Pioneer HDMI D>A>D Conversion??

Discussion in 'Plasma TVs Forum' started by togad, Dec 30, 2003.

  1. togad

    togad
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    I read in a thread on another forum that the Pioneer Plasmas do an internal Digital to Analogue to Digital conversion when fed with an HDMI signal. Anyone else heard anything about this?
     
  2. bobbypunk

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    they state that the technology involves no conversions, thats what the whole principle is based on!!
    I suppose it's possible but would defeat the object.
     
  3. togad

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    My views exactly - hence my post here to see if anyone else had heard about it. The comment is from a very knowledgeable source though (Stacey Spears).
     
  4. gandley

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    i thought the only variable in the chain was that the pic is still scaled and this effects pic quality. considering if you let the dvd scale and then the panel scales as well.
    i guess the question is, is the scaling done in the digital domain or not?
     
  5. Chris Muriel

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    There should indeed be no ADC (Analogue to Digital Converter) required if the source is HDMI or (digital) DVI.
    RGB , VGA etc. are , of course, analogue so these require an ADC
    to be implemented into any flatpanel display.
    My employer does well out this (see www.analog.com/flatpanel )
    as plasma screens etc. need all these "legacy" inputs to deal with like RGB, s-video, composite and VGA.
    It will take many years before the ADC disappears as a requirement.

    Chris Muriel, Manchester.
     
  6. togad

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    Hi Chris -

    I'm aware that there isn't a requirement for any D>A>D conversion for an HDMI signal, but there are claims that this is exactly what the panel does:

     
  7. Brogan

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    Well if Pioneer have already admitted to Stacey Spears (whoever he/she is) then they already have a problem as I for one will be contacting them asking them to "correct the error via software" and I suggest that everyone else with a 434/504 does the same.
    It will only be a matter of time before Pioneer have to do something about it.

    Think of the resale value of these 1st gen' units if this is true...
     
  8. togad

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    FWIW, Stacey Spears is a highly respected US writer on all things hi-fi and home "theater". If he's saying that the panels do a D>A>D conversion when fed with an HDMI signal, I believe it.

    I agree with you Brogan - some sort of "formal" approach to Pioneer UK needs to be made regarding this to get to the bottom of the issue.
     
  9. Brogan

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    I will be contacting Pioneer tomorrow to try and verify whether there is an issue although I doubt very much they will admit as much as it is potentially a serious issue falsely advertising the specification of a product.
    I may also contact the Office of Fair Trading or whichever government body is responsible for this sort of thing.

    I can't imagine it would be too difficult for Pioneer to resolve if it is true as it will just be an upgrade or replacement of the media receiver. Granted it won't be cheap to do a product recall but it's the only real option they have. As soon as they admitted the problem whether officially or not they pretty much committed themselves to this action.
     
  10. togad

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    Hmm.. my reading of it was that it was the panel itself doing the conversion, not the media box. I see now though that it's not particularly explicit. I'll try contacting Stacey to see if he can expand on his comments.
     
  11. Brogan

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    That would be useful as it would be good to have some "ammunition" to fire at Pioneer.
    Perhaps I am mistaken about the media receiver's involvement but I just assumed all processing would be done there and the panel would just display whatever it is fed.
     
  12. togad

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    I think the panel must do quite a lot of processing (if not all of it?) - after all, it tells you what signal is being input (1080i, 750p etc), and must then process that signal in order to display it on its 1280*768 resolution.
     
  13. Brogan

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    Just read through all the posts on the other forum and it seems to be a bigger issue over there.
    Perhaps because there aren't many 434/504 owners over here yet?
    Anyway it looks like Pioneer will have to answer to their actions as they continued to market the products as having "all digital signal paths" knowing full well that wasn't the case...
     
  14. Billilu

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    Hmmm, just read through it as well. This Spears chap seems to have said this without providing any evidence to back it up, and then disappeared leaving everyone else to worry about it. Until some hard evidence is provided, rather than speculation from a singular source, however 'reliable', Pioneer may feel they don't have a case to answer.
     
  15. Brogan

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    Perhaps not but if you ask them to formally respond with regards to the functionality then they are obliged to answer yes or no.
    I've just fired off a letter to them asking them to confirm either way.
    I'll update the thread if and when they reply.
     
  16. joys_R_us

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    I will contact the German Pioneer org. and ask the same question.

    Stacey Spears is indeed a very knowledgeable person and knows a lot of details about scalers etc. This is why this issue really makes me angry (I believe Stacey).

    BTW: All plasma panels (the panel drivers as the last element in the chain) are fed (to my knowledge) analogue. Whatever you feed into the box. But the HDMI really should save one conversion step (into analogue in the DVD player and then digital for scaling in the plasma box) ...
     
  17. Brogan

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    Nice one.
    Let us know how you get on.
     
  18. Brogan

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    According to Pioneer it really is a pure digital path all the way.
    This image is taken directly from their PureVision brochure.
     

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  19. joys_R_us

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    Having thought a few minutes more about this shocking news I came to the conclusion that this can't be a simple "mistake". You don't program such complicated steps (if it is not done by hardware) like digital-analog conversion by mistake. My guess is they tried to circumvent the HDCP problems they had at the introduction of the plasmas (these problems were mentioned to me by their German hotline as the reason for the delay bringing the panels to the market) and sold the panels KNOWING that HDMI wasn't working properly. Even worse, the demo units were different to misguide the public.

    This smells of CLASS action suit in the USA.
     
  20. Brogan

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    I made similar comments yesterday.
    If it is true and Pioneer were aware of it then they are guilty of false advertising/marketing at the very least and to mislead the public in this way is suicide for a major electronics manufacturer.

    Based on their response to my formal letter I will consider the next action to take but this will depend on whether:
    a) It's true
    b) Pioneer admit it
    c) Pioneer are willing to rectify the problem (after admitting it)

    I suspect the Office of Fair Trading here in the UK will be getting involved at some point too...
     
  21. togad

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    Just a quick addendum. The thread I alluded to in my original post wasn't the one on avsforum (but thanks for pointing that one out chaps). The original thread was over on the Meridian forum. To save you the link, here's the relevant quotes:

    sspears
    posted 12-20-2003 12:30 PM
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    First gen HDMI plasmas from Pioneer convert the HDMI to analog and then back to digital. 2nd gen will fix the mistake.

    posted 12-21-2003 11:45 AM
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
     
  22. MAW

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    If true this is shocking! Has anyone phoned pioneer technical? You might just catch them on the hop unless they are either in ignorance or been briefed. You are right, it contravenes the sale of goods act. However, most people who've bought them are in ignorance of too much else to take this on board. Most of my customers blank out when I tell them sky digital has an analogue video output, and as for telling them about how many processes the signal goes through, you must be joking. The bottom line for most is that it's the best integrated plasma tv on the market. Though in my view that's not saying much.
     
  23. gandley

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    I have seen this before on a german website, but i thought it was the translation page gone weird. they claimed also that there was an issue with digital pathway. it was about a mth ago, but ill try and find it and dig out the thread.
    This would mean 2 sources have reported this issue
     
  24. Arshad

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    There is an interesting demo, check out the demo on "keeping the signal digital". its very specific about HDMI going direct to the Digital Selector bypassing the D to A conversion steps used when employing the other connection methods.

    http://pioneerpurevision.com/?pioneer=purevision
     
  25. Brogan

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    I called the Pioneer UK CS number on Friday and specifically asked them whether there is any D-A-D conversion on the HDMI path.
    The guy I spoke to said "as far as I am aware it is all digital".
    I have since sent a letter to Pioneer GB asking them to formally respond to the rumours that there is a stage of analogue conversion and to confirm whether the panel I have bought has this "fault" and what they intend to do about it if it does.
    I will not accept anything less than a software upgrade (if possible) to correct the problem or a full refund for both my 504 and 868.
     
  26. joys_R_us

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    I sent an email to Pio Germany. We will see what they answer.

    The only thing they have to correct is the bloody media box. They should just replace it.

    BTW: My plasma is having dropouts (again or still ?) -approx. once every few hours...-
     
  27. MAW

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    Not so surely. The connection between media box and screen is digital, and there's no reason why the screen does any D-A converting, DVI on plasmas is almost old hat. Even Pioneer's own, which incidentally is excellent, on the MXE. No, it's the accursed media box that does all that.

    Having re-read and thought about that though, I see what you are saying properly. The actual panel drivers are analogue? Seems barmy! But I've heard more bizarre things, so I won't argue too much till I've found out the truth. Perhaps a new thread on that subject would be a good idea, unless Gordon or someone can wade in and give a definitive answer
     
  28. Timmy B

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    A bit is represented in a digital circuit by a voltage. Exciting plasma gas is an all or nothing matter. So, all it takes is an interface circuit to make the digital bit properly excite the gas.

    If anything converts something to analog, it's your eyes.
     
  29. MAW

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    That was my understanding too, though on a molecular level... all things are digital.
     
  30. joys_R_us

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    Yes, I was talking about the circuits driving the single cells of the panel. Although I am not totally sure, these high voltage driving circuits are analogue for practicability reasons.

    In the past I also read through some patent applications on the US patent site and there were patent applications referring to different voltage curves in the panel driving circuits to influence the specifications of plasma panels.

    It would be interesting to get an input from a real expert although this won't change the problem mentioned in this thread...
     

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