Problem with Pio868 and HDMI on Sanyo Z2


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Aug 30, 2003
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I've just bought a Pio868 off the forums here from someone who had it working perfectly with a Sony HS20. According to the player/projector matrix on the French web board I've posted links to in the past this combination should work with firmware version 103, at present I can find no way of discovering the firmware I have.

However, maybe the symptoms of my problem could ring bells with someone ...

The 868 is sending video to the Z2 via the HDMI->DVI cable, evidenced by ( a ) I have a picture :D and ( b ) the Z2 says it's getting D-525p input.

However, the 868 is not allowing me to get to the HDMI settings, in the "Initial Settings" menu there's the "Options" sub-menu and in there is an "HDMI" sub-menu which is always greyed out. Also greyed out are the HDMI settings in the "Video" menu tree.

Basically, the part of the 868 knows it's connected to an HDMI-compliant device but the other part doesn't ... it makes no sense to me and as usual with user manuals the 'troubleshooting' section is utterless useless.

Does anyone have any ideas? I'll try calling Pioneer on Monday but it'd be nice if I could sort this out sooner. :)

As far as i'm aware the Z2 will take a dvi feed, but it can't handle / isn't hdmi compliant.


Chris l.
Well according to the Sanyo's specs and technical manuals it is HDCP compliant .. and as I say the 868 is happily sending it digital video which it wouldn't do if it [the 868] didn't think it was talking to an HDCP-capable device.

AFAIK HDMI uses DVI as the video connection and HDCP as the data transfer, therefore if the player is sending digital data why wouldn't it let me set, for example, the output resolution? Basically, would it REALLY want to be talking to an HDMI-equipped device in order to allow configuration of the output signal, even though that signal IS being sent?

Me confused. :confused:
I thought HDMI = DVI + HDCP + audio I must say, from that Baumann link which I've read before .. still, I guess the 868 is telling me that I'm wrong, though I still don't understand why it's happy send a signal yet not let me tailor it.

Tnanks for that other link, I'll go peruse it and see if it clarifies things.
Yes HDMI is DVI-D, but with HDCP protection (with present dvd format both are fully compatable, as current dvd only sends out an 8bit signal anyway)

Have you made sure your sending a progressive signal to the Z2
im not sure but i thoght u could also send an interlaced signal via HDMI with the 868i

Failing that you may of just found out why it was been sold....

Quote from said links

Through the use of an adaptor cable, HDMI will be backwards compatible with equipment using DVI and the EIA-861 DTV profile. However, the advanced features of HDMI, such as digital audio and, will not be available

Might i advice you send fulabeer a pm as i know he uses the 868i with an S3
The guy I bought off used it with an HS20 which is of course an HDMI beast and he had full access to the HDMI settings.

I'm as sure as I can be it's sending progressive, that's what it's set up for, and the Z2 is showing it's receiving a 525P signal. I've also noticed ther HDMI indicator on the 868 isn't lit, so clearly it is making some distinction between HDMI and DVI/HDCP even though the manual is less than explicit.

I won't actually be using it with the Z2, I've got a Z200 on its' way and since that's only 1024x576 then the scaling ability of the 868 isn't going to be useful anyway. I'm really just trying to understand why I'm seeing what I'm seeing in terms of the 868's view of the Z2.
yeah seems strange. as far as i remember the other guys when using a none HDMI PJ were still getting acces to the hdmi menu when using dvi

to find your firmware, press menu and select together and hold..... there will be a menu system appears and it will display 101/103 etc.....

I dont know, but my first impression would be that the Z2 is reporting back as non compliant

Thanks for that info buns, I'll try it when I've finished re-siting my equipment ... in preparation for the arrival of the Z200 which was for Saturday delivery, I never realised such delievery is NOT guaranteed even though you pay a premium ... damned City Link. :mad:
you must have missed mcmullanbrush (bet i have that name all wrong!) and his citylink adventures!

are you selling your Z2? what are you selling for? £1150? £1200?

Will be selling the Sanyo yes, hadn't decided on a price, I'll need to see what it retails at .. something around £1000 is my initial thought, depending on close examination of things like dead/stuck pixels and blobs.

As far as City Link are concerned, Russell at Nexnix did warn me that successful Saturday delivery is only about 90%, I'm not that fussed not having it just the hassle of getting it redirected ... and I'm sure the premium I paid will be refunded. ;)
Thanks Sneaky .. that's not directly related to my problem but there's some very interesting observations being discussed there, more general than just the HS20.

In the final analysis if I have to use component feed then it won't be the end of the world, if I'd gone the Denon 2900 route that's what I'd have done in any case .. and at some time I'm bound to get an HDMI-equipped projector. :D
As mentioned i have the 868i, connected via HDMI->DVI to my S3 DLP.
I have full access to the HDMI menu.
When i connect via DVI(HDMI), the blue HDMI light comes on (on the 868i).
I notice if i switch the projector to another input, the HDCP handshake breaksdown and the DVI(HDMI) connect light goes out.
It is mentioned in my S3 manual that the projector is switched on first, and switched to DVI etc.
The Pioneer is then switched on.

However i have found it works no matter which way i switch things on.
I wasn't initially impressed by DVI(HDMI).
But after some tweaking i have the picture which exceeds the component ouput.(The component is just so good!)

Hi Fulabeer thanks for those comments. Apologies for not replying earlier but I've been discussing the issue with a Pioneer tech. on their support site and doing some playing. Bottom line is that the 868 doesn't recognise the Z2 as being full DVI/HDCP .. no matter what I do the blue light doesn't light up, which seems to be the key indicator, which also reflects the unavailability of the HDMI options, even though the 868 is happy to output digital video.

However, the point's moot because I've just connected the 868 to my new Sharp Z200E and YES, it works ... the blue light is on and I have access to the HDMI scaling options and image tweaks. :clap:

Running at 1280x720P, even though the Sharp is only 1024x576, generates a stunning image which is noticeably cleaner and sharper than the component running at a native 1024x576P (on a PAL FoTR:EE).

This is my first DLP and I'm seeing a lot of rainbows on Component, more a curiosity than an annoyance and a price well worth paying for the better colour rendering than the Z2, these are especially noticeable of course on the battle scene of the FoTR prolog. Playing via HDMI though the rainbows occur less frequently, or at least they seem to. Can this be a REAL effect or is it a placebo, I expect better images with HDMI so I get them? I know I'm not imagining the better clarity and detail but could rainbows also be affected?

Real or not, the combination of the 868 and the Z200 are producing an absolutely amazing picture ... Middle Earth has never looked so good. :smashin:
so your take on the black level is??? :D

Originally posted by buns
so your take on the black level is??? :D
Actually, not what you're expecting. :)

The Sharp's blacks are a bit blacker that the Z2's but not by a large amount, leastwise, not out of the box, so far all I've done is select 'Eco', twiddle Colour Temp. to 65K and select Cinema1 Gamma. It'll never be up to NEC HT's standard, the NEC is in a league of its' own pretty much and I didn't expect to get stunning blacks with the Sharp from the little I've read. In reality, the Z2's black level generally was okay as far as I'm concerned, it was the shadow detail which I found lacking.

However, from a couple of hours viewing it's clear that blacks per se are only part of the equation, it's what the Sharp does with them. Whether this is the Sharp or standard for DLPs I don't know, but the shadow detail and indeed clarity in general is so much better .. and the colours are out of this world compared to the Z2.

I was happy with the Z2 in all departments except for detail and colour. I watched FoTR up to the Black Rider bit and toggled between the Z200 and the Z2 and I was amazed at the difference in the colour rendition, while the Z2 gives a perfectly watchable image the Z200 makes it look photo-quality.

The Z200 is not the pinnacle by any stretch of the imagination, better black level would be nice and 1280x720 would no doubt be nicer still .. on my 92" at 10' distance SDE was just noticeable, so I moved my viewing position back a couple of feet and that pretty much dealt with that. However, the greatly enhanced, more natural colour rendering coupled with lack of VB/FPN makes it a major upgrade.

I know you're contemplating an HT1100 and there's no doubt that it's picture would be an improvement over the Sharp, however it's also £700+ more and even though I did set out to buy an 1100 I'm not at all unhappy, the price difference paid for the 868 which is definitely a match for my HTPC which I intend to sideline.

I'm happy .. until I can afford an HDMI-equipped D30. ;)
Just a side note, for other 868i->Z2 (Toshiba etc etc) owners.
Pioneer have started shipping the 868i with upgraded firmware, which is supposed to fix these DVI(HDMI) problems.

It was 1.306.
Newer units are shipping with 1.406

How to find Firmware version:

Open player menu
go to "Initial" Settings
Highlight "Option" (do not press enter)
press DISPLAY on remote
and player will display FW version.

I have no idea if Pioneer will be upgrading older players with this firmware. If you have problems with any DVI projectors, contact Pioneer.
It might be a simple CDRom flash etc.
Interesting .. the tech I've been exchanging messages with for the last 3/4 days hasn't once mentioned a firmware update! The 868 I have is from November, still haven't checked the firmware but obviosuly it'll be older than this.
Thanks for the info KraGorn. It is interesting that our feelings of the Z2's strengths and weaknesses differ, i actually though detail reproduction was very strong! :)

Glad to hear you are happy with sharp, i have to admit that i too have been looking a bit further afield and have checked it out along side similar infocus models. In any case, its just a case of getting my Z2 sold and clearing the credit card bill, then i will have the ht1100 (still possibly with lens) on its way to me!

The HDMI player will have to wait, looks like im sticking with sdi for now! :D

all the best

Originally posted by buns
Thanks for the info KraGorn. It is interesting that our feelings of the Z2's strengths and weaknesses differ, i actually though detail reproduction was very strong! :)
Well you did spend a lot of time tweaking, I didn't. :)

One example which sticks in my mind at first viewing of the Z200 ...

In FoTR, when the 'dragon' firework shoots off over the lake after dive-bombing the guests, I saw on the Z200 the smoke as it sped away and then exploded in the final display .. I had never seen that smoke on the Z2, or at least it had never been so clear as to actually stand out, I was amazed. Also, in the sequence in the prolog battle when the camera pulls back as Sauron explodes, I noticed a lot more detail in the far distance of the landscape.

Again, it may be that it's not the Z2 per se but my lack of tweaking, however both these and some other 'wow, never saw that before' moments were enough to convince me that I am definitely seeing more than before.
Originally posted by fulabeer
Pioneer have started shipping the 868i with upgraded firmware, which is supposed to fix these DVI(HDMI) problems.
Do you by any chance have a source for this information? Pioneer 'tech support' are categorically denying this (you need to read this bottom to top, the last repsonse goes at the top):

Response (JDLCS) 02/03/2004 10:15 AM

Thanks for your email and I can confirm that there is no firmware revision for the DV-868.

Customer Relations.

Customer (Robin Collins) 01/03/2004 11:14 PM
I believe what I'm told elsewhere .. you say you're not aware of it, did you actually ask?

Response (JDLCS) 27/02/2004 09:59 AM

We are unaware of any firmware revision for the DV-868.

Customer Relations.

Customer (Robin Collins) 26/02/2004 11:35 AM
Actually, I think the 868 DID have a problem which you didn't mention.

I've been told on an A/V web board that 868's leaving the factory recently had a new firware version:

"Pioneer have started shipping the 868i with upgraded firmware, which is supposed to fix these DVI(HDMI) problems.

It was 1.306.
Newer units are shipping with 1.406"

If this is the case then it would appear my 868 is probably faulty after all, otherwise Pioneer wouldn't have had to update the firmware in new machines.

Naturally I believe you :), it'd be nice to toss these muppets some proof.

Thanks, I've passed that on to the Pioneer tech who refuses to believe new firmware has been released. :mad:

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