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Progressive Scan Freeview Boxes...

Discussion in 'Freeview & YouView' started by SquidMan, Jun 18, 2005.

  1. SquidMan

    SquidMan
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    Are there such things? Having just got my DVD player running a progressive scan signal through my component connection I can see what an LCD screen can truely look like, and I was wondering if there were any Freeview boxes which do this kind of processing that anyone could recommend?

    Picture quality being paramount, I've not been overly impressed by the current PQ I've got with Freeview. Can a Freeview picture be effected by the strength of the signal being recieved... the settings on my Freeview box indicate the sinal is poor, but I can still see a picture and hear sound fine... it does occationally mosaic or drop sound though :(

    Cheers

    SquidMan
     
  2. MarkE19

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    AFAIK there are no progressive Freeview boxes available. The problem being that the TV signal is transmitted as interlaced, but a DVD is recorded as progressive, so it takes more work to get a good progressive TV picture - This means more expensive, and Freeview boxes are being sold at very cheap prices so an expensive FV box is unlikely to sell well.

    Everything you watch on an LCD screen will actually be progresasive as the screen will have its own built in deinterlacer/scaler. As is always the case though it will only be a very basic deinterlacer/scaler to keep the price of the screen down. This is why the results are not that great.

    If PQ is that important to you then you should consider spending money on a good quality offboard deinterlacer/scaler such as a Lumagen HDP. Iscan HD etc, but this will set you back up to £1000 or more :eek: . If you go this route you should also put the DVD player into the unit with an interlaced signal as the off board processing should do a better job than that in the DVD player.

    Mark.
     
  3. Bernard Barnett

    Bernard Barnett
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    Good advice from Mark and you may also be interested to know that the Netgem iPlayer Freeview box can output component via its scart - it's the only one that does this. The iPlayer is not universally popular as it has some reliability and functionality issues (suggest you do a search) but it does give brilliant picture quality.
     
  4. Nick_UK

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    I think you are confusing RGB output with YUV (Y, Pr, Pb) component out. Progressive output is only possible with the latter. Your improved picture could be as a result of progressive scan output, but it's also possible that it's merely a result of viewing a higher bitrate picture.
     
  5. LV426

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    To answer your other question about signal strength; digital TV does not degrade, with weakening signals, like analog TV does. When it does degrade, blockiness (mosaic) and/or audio glitches occur. If or when this isn't happening at all, then your PQ will be as good as it will ever be - with the existing connections and hardware. What you are seeing may be, therefore:

    a) minor, less noticeable mosaic effects which do result from poor signal
    b) a result of the type of connection you are using - you don't say if you are using RGB between the Freeview box and TV - you should be. If you can't, then SVideo is a close second. If you are using composite (or RF even) then this will degrade your PQ markedly. Look for settings in the digibox, and check the capabilities of the input on the TV from the specs and pick the best signal protocol you can.
    c) The resolution of a Freeview TV signal is the same as DVD. But the digital compression used is greater, and varies between channels. Greater compression causes some blockiness/mosaic effects which for the most part are fairly unintrusive, but you may be seeing this. And there's nothing you can do except be happy in the knowledge that $ky uses greater compression for many of the channels.

    I'm going to hazard a guess that (b) is where you need to look.
     
  6. Richard46

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    The Topfield (which of course is a Freeview box but is also a PVR) can also output YUV from scart. In fact that is how mine is connected to my LCD panel. (Scart to 3 phono)

    Richard
     
  7. SquidMan

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    Wow!

    Thanks for the responses guys.

    MarkE19: Thanks for the info, it's a bit of a headache trying to get your head around all these conectivity options, and the associated technology they can support. However, you do mention that there are no progressive scan freeview boxes avaliable, I did find this little fella:

    Mustek DVB-T102: http://www.dabs.com/uk/productView.htm?quicklinx=3P7M&mc=3

    Which does say that it can do a Progressive Scan function... via SCART?! I think I'll stay with my current set up though rather than splashing out over a grand on scaler ;)

    Bernard Barnett: Thanks for the tip, I'll have a look into this one, you might want to have a look over the one I've linked to above, Progressive through SCART sounds a tall order, but it's a hell of a lot cheaper then the iPlayer ;)

    Nick_UK: I've managed to get my head around RGB and YUV component... my main interest is if there was a Freeview box which supports the latter connection (especially with progressive, if it could ever be possible).

    My Freeview box (Philips DTR500) is connected to my LCD TV (SONY KLV-L23M1) through a ProWire RGB Scart cable. My DVD player (Pioneer DV-470) is set to progressive and is running through the LCD screen via a component (Y, Pr, Pb) connection.

    LV426: Hopefully the above information should make things a little clearer on the old connection front (apologies for not listing it in my origional posting). Thanks for clearing things up on the signal/PQ front though, I think I just don't like to see that my signal is measured as 'poor' on the Freeview box's setup menu :( But I am using an enabled RGB connection through as s****y SCART cable I can afford, so hopefully all is covered on this front... I hope?!

    Great to hear that Freeview doesn't scrimp on the old resolution though.

    Richard46: I take it this Scart to 3 phono is similar to the Mustek DVB-T102 box? (link above)

    Thanks again guys, my main reason for persuing this line of inquiry is because my TV seems to suffer from a rather irritating habit of having high contrast colors (mainly black and white) flicker on the screen (eg a pin stripe suit will look fine in motion, but will suddenly 'flash' when the person stops moving) this problem did also seem to be present when watching DVD's (even through the component connection) but since I set the DVD player to progressive, the problem has vanished, and it would be great to eliminate this same problem I have watching Freeview (I've exhausted the various brightness/contrast/sharpness options already trying to minimalise/get rid of this problem) so the progressive option seemed like the best route ;)

    Cheers

    SquidMan
     
  8. bspks

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    You might be interested to know that the Setpal range of boxes are also capable of out putting component (but not progressive scan) video via their scart output.
    You need to go into the engineering menu by pressing "status, select, text, text, select" and changing the output from RGB to component and you need a SCART to Component lead connected as the attached diagram.
     
  9. 9761

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    But will the quality be reduce because its not component to component?

    Also Im thinking about not having my humax now as it was delivered last week damaged and thinking about getting a component out box if the quality is better.

    Thanks
     
  10. 9761

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    So will a Freeview box with component out will it look better than scart on the screen?

    Thanks
     
  11. Nick_UK

    Nick_UK
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    Marginally.
     
  12. MarkE19

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    Depends on how well your TV works with a component, compared to RGBcvS signal.
    In general I would say that there is going to be very little difference in PQ between the 2 signal types.

    Mark.
     
  13. hornydragon

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    the netgemIplayer component output i have been told by MAW is inferior to scart RGBcvS output, but that of courses will also depend on the display............. If you want the best output from FV to an LCD TV you have to spend ALOT of money depending on the TV you may or may not see any difference RGBcvS is theoretically superior to Y Pb Pr...............but implementation is often the deciding factor
     
  14. 9761

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    Well my TV is a Toshiba 32ZP48P and im using RGB atm and even when im I've switched to CVBS or whatever I cant see the difference.
     
  15. MartinImber

    MartinImber
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    Quite often setting composite leaves the RGB signal live but turns off the RGB is here signal
     
  16. Pat Marcus

    Pat Marcus
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  17. hornydragon

    hornydragon
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    not sure how good the De-interlacer would be in it Pat, I think the top combo at the moment is a topfield PVR feeding a scaler to de-interlace and scale
     
  18. 9761

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    Ive decided to buy the Pace twin for £115inc del and see how that goes.
     
  19. Bernard Barnett

    Bernard Barnett
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    I looked up the Topfield specs but it doesn't appear to have digital audio out.
     
  20. SquidMan

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    I'm very confused...

    If the Mustek is to have (and I quote) a 'Component video output with progressive scan function' why does it only list two SCART sockets as it's output sockets?! (see http://www.mustek.com.tw/html/prod_dvb/T300.html)

    All I'm after is something that will hopefully rid my LCD picture of this irritating 'strobing' effect which seems to be present through my current setup (see signature below) which I know is pretty much erradicated through using the progressive scan function on my DVD player...

    Would people generally suggest getting a Freeview box that is the same make as their television? I bought the Phillips DTR500 freeview box as I was intending to get a Phillips LCD TV origionally... but I opted for the Sony one in the end... the Sony Freview box has had very good reviews (despite it's quite bloated price tag) so I'm just weighing up my options... if only I could 'test' a selection of Freeview boxes eh?

    Any pearls of wisdom would be greatly appreciated... thanks to all who have posted so far :)

    Cheers

    Squiddy
     
  21. hornydragon

    hornydragon
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    scart can carry component, it uses the RGB lines used for RGB to carry the Y Pb Pr signals still quite rare tho

    Where is the twin available for £115???
     
  22. Mr.D

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    DVD can be encoded as frames but it rarely (never) is on commercially available discs. Its interlaced. Its contains video little different from that broadcast on freeview. The deinterlacing issues are practically identical.
     
  23. 9761

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    but sending Component through scart wont that be less quality than standard component?
     
  24. hornydragon

    hornydragon
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    not really
     
  25. 9761

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    The only thing that irratates me on RGB Scart is when in EPG or Switching channels the on screen display I find alot of fuzziness. Usally around the border of the menu box or where their is white writing you can notice it. Even with a quality scart I see it. Hopefully with my new Pace twin things might be different or maybe not.
     
  26. hornydragon

    hornydragon
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    twin is renowned for a "soft" picture so you may not see this improve much
     
  27. 9761

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    ok thanks,
     
  28. David Mackenzie

    David Mackenzie
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    Actually, there's one sad exception to this rule: E4. E4 is broadcasting at 512x384 is memory serves - AND it doesn't have much in the way of bit-rate either. The picture quality is abominable, as it so often is on Digital TV.

    Luckily though, E4+1, also on Freeview, has a much higher bit-rate and is full resolution.
     
  29. 9761

    9761
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    I thought E4=1 looked better than E4.
     
  30. Liam @ Prog AV

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    A 40 quid freeview box is not going to have better deinterlacing than your LCD TV. Progressive Scan is a nice buzzword, but unless it is actually done well it could just as easily be a backwards step. Unfortunately (for your wallet) the only way you are going to see significant improvement is to invest in a dedicated video processor. The Lumagen VisionDVI is very well priced at £695, otherwise you are looking at £1000+. Perhaps a second hand older Lumagen if you can find one

    However, Freeview is pants anyway. Sky seems to be the best of the Digital TV services, but is still highly compressed (much more than DVD) which is probably the cause of most of your woes. A dedicated scaler will improve things, but it may not be entirely down to deinterlacing that is giving you problems. You may find some success in turning down (or off) the noise reduction options in your TV. Also ensure you have colour and grayscales set, sharpness isn't to high etc etc. connectionwise ensure the Freeview box is actually sending an RGB signal, that you are using the TV scart socket (the other won't do RGB) and on the TV itself you are using an RGB specific scart socket, and have selected that correctly as an input.
     

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