Newbie advice - upscaling AV receivers

T

tallbloke

Guest
Hi there, a few quick questions for you all. I'm looking at an almost total home cinema system upgrade in the next year, but I'm a little confused about HDMI, resolution and particularly "upscaling".

1. I'm thinking of getting the Samsung LE40R51B - any comments on this? Seems to be excellent for value at around £1200

2. Are HD TVs such as this generally capable of upscaling analogue sources to HD (ish) quality, or do they just revert to the source signal's resolution?

3. If they can, are AV receivers such as the Yamaha RXV1600 capable of doing the job better?

4. At around £600-£700, the Yamaha seems to be the only receiver capable of doing this (using HDMI, I appreciate some cheaper ones can upscale to component) Are there any others out there I should look at?

5. Is upscaling such a big deal anyway? I'm drawn to it because my DVD player is a little old and therefore has no HDMI out, plus I like the idea of having just one HDMI cable to feed the TV with all its data (easier to wallmount).

Sorry to waffle, hope somebody can be of assistance. My brain hurts :confused:
 

Knyght_byte

Distinguished Member
ok, firstly reading your post you seem to be a bit confused over something you may not be aware of......you are mixing together both upconverting (taking a cable signal such as s-video and turning it in to a component signal) and upscaling (taking a film/programme of a certain resolution, say 576p for standard DVD and then using a computer chip to increase the resolution by guessing certain extra information and adding it to create a 720p picture)

the difference between the two is that upconverting simply applies to what kind of cable you are using.......upscaling applies to trying to make the picture more suitable for a display capable of higher definition....modern technologies such as LCD and Plasma have a 'native' resolution, a scaler takes any resolution and turns it in to the one suitable for the particular display screen.

most av amps now will upconvert signals to component and in the slightly more expensive ones they will upconvert to HDMI......however the signal is still only being passed along in the original resolution, so if you have a Nintendo Gamecube plugged in to your av amp, this has a 480i resolution, you plug it in via composite connection (lowest quality form of cable for video).....you can in the right receiver upconvert this to say HDMI....but its still the same quality.....

some av amps will now upscale the picture being sent through the amp....altho this is mostly the more expensive ones, say around £800 and up i think.......this will take say a DVD signal input by component in to the amp at 576p and upscale it to 720p so when you pass it to the display screen its at the closest native to the display (assuming you have a 720p HD LCD screen).......

being honest the upscalers in a receiver arnt likely to be much cop because there isnt exactly a lot of money to spend on it....given how much else in there.....you may find the scaler in your display will do a better job, or the scaler in a DVD player etc.....all you need really if this is the case is an av amp that can upconvert signal to HDMI, then let the displays scaler do the work......but if you demo first to see which does the better job it would be a good idea....

i dont know the models you list so i cant comment....all i can say is go check them out at the store, then ask to borrow one for a home demo, see how happy you are with its abilities and if it seems good, then go for it, if not go abck and borrow a different one....simple :)
(you will find they probably want a credit card swipe for the full amount as a precaution, its perfectly natural....)

hope this has been of help and not too long....lol...
 

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