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Limit 9900SE v Philips 963

Discussion in 'Blu-ray & DVD Players & Recorders' started by Ekko Star, Jan 7, 2003.

  1. Ekko Star

    Ekko Star
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    I'm looking for a dedicated player with Prog Scan for my AE100.

    Which one of these two is the best and what would you recommend ?

    Not concerned about the difference in price between the two, only the quality.
     
  2. MartinCo

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  3. MontyUK

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    The only way to decide which has the best quality is to see them both yourself in my opinion . . . that article clearly states a preference, but am I right in thinking that the Arcam DV88 uses the same Zoran chipset as the Limit player ?

    Also, reviews of both these machines on this forum suggest they BOTH produce a wonderful picture . . . I'd try and get a demo if I were you, rather than relying on the opinions of others, as picture quality is such a subjective thing once you get up to the level of either of these players.

    Monty.
     
  4. Timh

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    Ekko

    The Limit has a dickie remote and no standbye button on the facia of the player, I would go for the Philips, made in the EU, the Limit is probably another Chinese brand, and they some times fit dodgey dvd drives, my Brother has had two chinese made players both differant makes, and both have had the drives fail.
     
  5. MartinCo

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    almost true, but you have to be careful with your wording here, Monty... there are many models of Arcam dv88.

    the current arcam dv88+ has the same mpeg encoder and progscan chipset, but the other older models do not...(dv88 is just the standard non progressive version, dv88p uses a Sil503 addon board).. being picky but these are entirely different models really.

    so yes its the same chipset on the dv88+ and limit only.

    anyway, the whole is a sum of its parts... there are a lot more differences between the arcam dv88+ and limit than just the chipset. apart the mpeg encoder, from a hardware and firmware point of view, the machines are really unrelated.

    and no, I haven't see a Limit yet.. interesting but the mentions of no on/ off on the remote and other problems are big Xs against it for me.

    its a bargain price for now until toshiba, pioneer etc put out new models at the same price very soon.

    as a comparison, the Sage/ Faroudja chip in the Philips is used in many projectors above £3k as the de-interlacer (progressively
    scanning every input)... very common chip for this usage and excellent quality.

    I have seen a dv88+ and a philips 962 demoed.

    Ekko Star you did say the price difference was unimportant so...

    rather than based on people's opinions as Monty puts it,
    have a search on the demos people did on the Philips 962sa.
    its the predecessor to the 963 and almost identical.

    look especially for the shootout between various progressive scan dvd players and people's HTPCs.. quite a few people actually bought 962s based on these demos and stopped using their PC altogether.

    the Limit is a bargain at £200 for now, but the Philips is probably the best ps player under £600, bar none.
     
  6. MontyUK

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    All fair points Martin . . .I wasn't for one minute suggesting that the Limit was the equal of an £800/900 Arcam player . . simply that for the price it's got some pretty good internals, and that of all the negative comments I've seen about the player on this board, none are concerning the quality of it's picture output.

    Monty.
     
  7. MartinCo

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    fair point Monty, others have been comparing them based only on the shared chipset...
    what about the chroma bug reports on the Limit then?:)

    as is, I noticed a few people have already returned their Limit players having being disappointed with at least build quality (and possibly picture too.)

    the zoran vaddis 5 is also in the tosh 510/ 520 also at £175-220 (and others), so it is in a similar price range... regardless of it being in the Arcam also.

    the Limit did sound good at first for the price when Jean-Paul and others posted, but the later reports are worrying of no on/off standby on the remote or player, and mentions of either overheating or lack of responsiveness to remote control commands over time.

    the Philips has none of these problems and no chroma bug, for just over £100 more - if its in stock.
     
  8. MontyUK

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    I ignored the Chroma bug, as I'm too much of a newbie to know what I'm talking about ;)

    The build issues with the Limit are certainly a little offputting, I guess I'll see what's about in 3-4 weeks time when I enter the world of Plasma / Prog Scan DVD owner :D
     
  9. GadgetObsessed

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    According to todays HCC news article for the Philips DVD player:
    "Progressive Scan is delivered via the RGB output on the SCART connection"

    I thought that progressive scan was only supported on component video connections on displays. Can anyone confirm if any existing plasmas or high end TVs support progressive scan over RGB? (Or will prog scan simply work on any TV with an RGB input when using this DVD player?)
     
  10. John Dawson

    John Dawson
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    Progressive scan video is only permitted over component video connections. RGB is not allowed under the CSS licence rules.

    Sounds to me like the PR people don't know what they are talking about. But I am always happy to be proved wrong :)

    John Dawson (Arcam)
     
  11. Ricky27

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    Hi,a few people have mentioned a problem with the remote for this limit player,cant say ive had any problems whatsoever with mine,thank goodness.

    As for better known brands being better i.e my ex Tosh 510e,well that kept freezing up on me on a number of occasions,had a 210e before that on which the drive went within a week and both those players didnt display any time,chapter information on certain discs,but my shiny new limit does.:)

    If that wasnt all bad enough and believe me it was! my toshiba TV broke down within 2 months.
    :(
     
  12. big_mark

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    John, re "Progressive scan video is only permitted over component video connections. RGB is not allowed under the CSS licence rules."

    The Philips DVDR1000 recorder has Progressive on its VGA output, which is basically RGB + sync. It is currently disabled on commercial DVDs. Are you saying that this recorder, or others that use RGB/VGA will never be allowed to output Progressive via VGA under CCC rules"?

    BTW, the manual for the 963SA clearly indicates component outputs and the Progressive/Interlace switch controls these outputs, so the PR guys need to go back to School!
     
  13. MartinCo

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    636SA?

    a typo, or are we talking about another model now?
     
  14. big_mark

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    thanks!
     
  15. Ekko Star

    Ekko Star
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    Ok looks like the Philips it'll be. But does anyone know if this player disables macrovision ?

    Not really interested in trying to save circa £100 if basics like standby switch and dodgy remote are in the equation as well as question marks over reliability.

    The Limit was beginning to sound too good to be true. Probably a very good player for the price but it sounds like it was also built to a price as well.

    Thanks for all the input.
     
  16. z5461313

    z5461313
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    Hi

    Before buying you really want to try and see the players with a number of DVD's. You do.

    I have a Philips 962sa Pal progressive and there are a couple of niggles I have with it with a Sanyo PLV30 projector

    1. I cannot seem to get the black level quite right ie black scenes are too dark. I've tried the gamma and brightness settings

    2. When a DVD has a slight grain the progressive mode makes the grain worse ( really worse )

    3. The progressive option seems to mute the colours ie they don't look as rich

    The Limit has an interlaced option that looks as good as progressive and does not mute the colours. I don't think the standby function is a great problem. You simply turn it on or off.

    I don't think people will complain about the picture of the Limit
     
  17. MartinCo

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    z,

    reading between the lines -
    you have both a philips 962sa non-european pal progressive and a limit 9900...but you now prefer to use the limit in interlaced mode? is that correct.

    do your progressive scan problems you list above happen with both the limit and the 962, or just the philips?

    preferring to use interlaced on the limit seems an odd thing to do... the opposite of why everyone is pushing for progressive scan.

    re: your questions

    1. black level.. not sure if there are any specific settings for this on the philips as on other players like denon and arcam. anyone?
    regardless it could be set differently on the limit from the 962.

    2. grain - that has been mentioned before quite a few times on denon 2800s/3800s and others - if a dvd's print has grain then a decent progressive scan player will show more detail and make this more evident.

    I can see grain in lots of films (Minority Report is a recent example) even via svideo... film does have a natural grain to it after all.

    if a player's output is slightly "softer" or less detail resolved then I guess this may be hidden to some extent.

    3. progressive scan muting the colours -
    it should be the exact opposite.. the picture should be far brighter than when interlaced.

    Martin
     
  18. Underscore

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    Well, my component cable arrived yesterday so I was able to hook my Limit 9900SE up to my Sanyo PLV-Z1 and try ProgScan. Firstly, the picture quality: Can't say I could see any difference in the basic picture quality. Since the eye is more sensitive to luma than chroma and both component and S-video both send luma down a single coax, I wasn't expecting much improvement due to sending chroma down two coaxes rather than one. The difference between interlaced and ProgScan component was also not noticable - as others here with the Z1 have said. However, the deinterlacing artifacts - line twitter and moire - are hugely improved in ProgScan. Some moire remains, as one would expect due to the limited resolution, but at a much reduced level over interlaced. The film that got me thinking about ProgScan was Thelma & Louise. I watched it last week and was constantly finding myself distracted by the artifacts. Last night I watched it in interlaced until I saw a problem, when I went back, switched to progressive and rewatched. In almost every case the problem was cured or, at least, vastly reduced. If anyone has this disc, specifically the R2 non-SE, the most obvious instance is at the beginning of an early chapter, where Louise is leaving work to pick-up Thelma, the T-bird is just a mess of moire and jaggies. ProgScan doesn't completely remove it, but it is reduced to the level where you really have to be looking for the problem to see it.

    So, I'm sold on the idea of ProgScan, I just need to decide whether to keep the Limit or take it back and get a 963. I spent the extra £19.95 to get the 3-yr warranty plus 50% trade-in, so reliability is not a huge concern. I also played a bit of Moulin Rouge, which is supposed to show the Chroma bug quite badly, and didn't have a problem with it. I don't care about DVD-A or SACD. Has anyone seen both? If the 963 picture quality is significantly better, it may be worth spending the extra £100. However, flicking through the manual, it appear that the Philips cannot be made to output MPEG soundtracks as PCM and DD/dts as raw - which I need as I have an MPEG DVD but my amp doesn't, AFAIK, decode it. Thoughts?

    Cheers,

    _
     
  19. z5461313

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    I got my Philips 926sa from HiVi Zone PAL progressive

    I prefer using the Limit for now.

    1. Colours are better. The Limit gives me a colourful picture like I used to get with my Sony 7700 before I started to use Progressive scan DVD players. I think progressive does mute the colours.

    2. The Philips does not have a brightness setting like the limit. It just has a gamma control which only has about 5 settings. I could not adjust it correctly to get a bright enough image in black scenes. I also tried the setting with the projector but it was always too much

    3. More films are using grain now. Band of Brothers, any Spielberg film Minority Report. I found the Philips progressive scan made the grain worse. So much so you thought the picture was breaking up. Grain is really annoying and it comes and goes. One minute you have quite a decent picture and then the next it looks like its breaking up

    With the Limit its interlaced mode is practically the same as its progressive mode. It is very hard to tell the difference.

    So I can use interlaced mode to get my colours back and the grain is then not exagerrated when it happens. The Limit has a brightness control so I can adjust that so my Black detail is ok again

    But as I say you should try and get a demonstration of the Philips before buying or a home trial and check these things. Play some grainy dvd's to see if the grain looks worse, some really dark areas to see if you still have all the detail there, check the colours are still vibrant compared to interlaced mode. Check the surround sound steering to see if its improved or got worse
     
  20. richard plumb

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    try reducing the sharpness or truelife on the DVD player. Both can add 'noise' to a picture which might get confused with film grain.

    A progressive scan DVD player shouldn't make grain more noticable - its maybe that on an interlaced display its *less* noticable than it should be. Progressive scan should be as close to the original film stock as possible.
     
  21. MartinCo

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    z,

    so this is the 7.5 & 0 IRE PAL & NTSC different black level problem?

    never heard of this before with the 962,... could be that it was missing the feature since it was NTSC player in reality and never needed the feature.
    was sold in R4 aus/nz land so it should have the feature I've thought.

    however if you look at the 963 manual - obviously pal-based by default, it has a specific setting for black level output.

    this should allow you to have the correct black levels for pal and ntsc on the player and a perfect picture in very dark scenes in both.


    Underscore...
    there is mention of MPEG soundtracks but nothing specific.

    had a quick read, and unlike one of my previous players, it doesn't look like you can set dd & dts to their normal output, and mpeg to downmixed pcm.

    for that one disc (I have Fargo if memory serves), I guess you would have to go into the sound preferences and switch everything to being downmixed... unless the 963's internal decoder can do all with the phonos.

    By DD/DTS output as raw, what do you mean.. via the standard optical or coax sockets?
     
  22. Underscore

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    Exactly. The only audio connection from my DVD player to my amp is a digital one (coax). The way I set up both my old Pioneer player and the Limit is to output DD/dts as the raw multichannel data - which my Sony amp can decode - but to downmix MPEG to PCM - which my amp will then decode using ProLogic. As far as I could see from flicking through the manual, the Philips only offers a single menu item for all surround formats with raw/PCM/off options. True, I could change the setting for the single disc in question (R2 Nikita) or connect up the on-board decoder, but I would have to remember to do this and recall stories of damage caused by passing unsupported data streams (dts in those cases) into amps in the past...

    _
     
  23. MartinCo

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    since you're going to have to connect the phonos for SACD and MP3s, you may as well use the internal decoder then... guess it depends on the amp.

    for the sake of one disc, it does seem a little OTT though.

    haven't been any made since very early R2 days AFAIK, and even then a very small percentage.
     
  24. MartinCo

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    z, its not got quite the same range of settings as the 963 options but the aus 962 manual, refers to setting called black level shift.. should be a similar thing with the 0 or 7.5 IRE setting.

    "Black level shift (NTSC only)
    Select ON for adapting the colour dynamics to obtain
    richer contrasts."

    have you tried the philips with this either off or on? R1 only though remember.
     
  25. z5461313

    z5461313
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    Hi

    No I haven't tried that. I have mainly R2 so I did not think it would alter anything

    My remarks are with a Sanyo PLV30 projector and different projectors may work differently also
     
  26. MartinCo

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    that black level setting is for NTSC only, but if you didn't realise and were basing some of the comparisons using R1.. its worth a look.

    also, I dont know if this feature is available on all 962s or not.. the excerpt was from the australia manual.. not sure if it will be there on a different countries model.
     
  27. Ekko Star

    Ekko Star
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    Well it seems from other posts a lot of people have partnered the Limit with the Sanyo and seem to be having good results.

    I am currently using an AE100 and am thinking of the HS10 in the not too distant future. Also will be hooking it possibly to a Panny plasma.

    Does any one have experience of how good the 963 is in the above scenario ?

    The Limit has simply put me off on the grounds of the build quality etc, though it does sound intriguing on the quality of picture it delivers.
     
  28. MartinCo

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    Ekko, there have been quite a few threads on similar setups either using the philips 962sa and another similar philips model the q50 (no longer available). both are faroudja based and have been used by ae100 owners in the threads.

    Suggestions for DVD player for AE100 http://www.avforums.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=44647

    Progressive shootout http://www.avforums.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=53109

    Mini TW100/ AE100 shootout is on! http://www.avforums.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=38158

    should give you some reading to do!:)
     
  29. Ekko Star

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    MartinCo, Thanks for that.

    963SA it will be, unless there are any other models coming out shortly with similar capabilities in that sort of price range ?
     
  30. Goof

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    Could anyone please help me out with this query - posted it on its own thread but no-one seems to be able to help me :(

    I was planning to get the limit 9900SE Prog Scan player this week and hook up to my Pj with VGA-RCA leads (PJ doesn't have component :rolleyes: ) but on seeing the PJ's specs here and seeing that it is not 480P compatible, will I still get any benefits from a PS player?
     

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