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Sky HD Solution for non HD Ready TV ?

Discussion in 'Sky Digital TV Forum' started by HeweyBoy101, Oct 29, 2005.

  1. HeweyBoy101

    HeweyBoy101
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    I have been pondering recently how to get Sky HD (at launch) without having to upgrade my TV straight away. I have a Philips 37PF9965 Plasma (non HD ready). This is an HD Alis panel (1024*1024 pixels). It has component inputs, but Philips (in their infinite wisdom) have restricted this to interlaced inputs only (no progressive signal will work at all). So, 1080i might work (haven't tried it), but 720p is a definite no-no (I know this having tried an upscaling DVD player at 720p).

    The Philips however does have a VGA input which accepts RGBHV signals. I've tested this in the past with a borrowed scaler (Iscan HD), and found that it would work with every conceivable input resolution, except 1080p.

    One (very expensive) way to get Sky HD (via analogue component) would be to buy an iscan scaler. However, this won't work unless I buy the very latest version, as the HD+ (and previous models) will only "pass-through" the 720p or 1080i signals, they will not transcode to RGBHV.

    Another (cheaper) option I've identified is to buy a converter unit to accept component input, and output as RGBHV. This would cost approx £140, including shipping. The model I'm looking at is as follows:-

    https://www.audioauthority.com/inde....audioauthority.com/?p=productMore&iProduct=1

    I know you guys have vast experience, and would welcom any feedback / guidance before I place an order.

    Thanks.
     
  2. Stephen Neal

    Stephen Neal
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    It is entirely conceivable that you will be able to watch Sky HD with no extra kit - if Sky offer a "fixed output resolution" option - as many HD STBs in the US offer.

    This allows you to force the box output to 1080i, with 1080i signals passed through, and 720p broadcasts cross-converted in the box to 1080i. This would allow you to permanently feed your display with 1080i, irrespective of the broadcast being in 720p or 1080i. (Assuming it is happy with 50i)

    Until Sky boxes arrive and this can be confirmed or proved not to be the case - I'd wait and see.
     
  3. jont

    jont
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    I'd check out John Sims' converters ... long-time forum supporter and good guy, many of the plasma users have got his boxes - including me ... www.js-technology.com/

    HTH

    Jon
     
  4. gizlaroc

    gizlaroc
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  5. johnnyw2k5

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    Sky HD for a non HD TV.............how stupid can you get.

    Whats the point in that
     
  6. Stephen Neal

    Stephen Neal
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    Yep - JS Tech has a good reputation. However looking at his site, I think he mainly deals in format converters (i.e. RGB to component, RGB to S-video etc.) not line-standard converters - which require digital framestore technology and interlacing and de-interlacing circuitry. That won't solve the OPs problem if the Sky box is only outputting 720/50p on 720/50p broadcasts, and his display only accepts 1080/50i. That is a different problem.

    John's stuff would convert a display that accepted 720/50p via RGB VGA, to work with a receiver that outputted 720/50p via HD component outputs for example. (It changes the signal format, not the signal line or field standard)
     
  7. gizlaroc

    gizlaroc
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    Sorry???
     
  8. gizlaroc

    gizlaroc
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    I am going to have to guess what your comment was refering to here........

    His TV is cabable of accepting and displaying HDTV, however it will not accept it over component, only over VGA, so if he buys a transcoder his display will be fine. So, not actually as stupid as some, it would seem! ;)
     
  9. gizlaroc

    gizlaroc
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    Going to have to pull you up on another thing here, have you seen HD being downconverted and running along side the same material on DVD??
    HD on an non HDTV is not that stupid at all.
     
  10. Stephen Neal

    Stephen Neal
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    The OP has posted not that his display ONLY has VGA inputs, but that it won't accept 720/50p via component HD inputs. If the Sky HD box supports permanent 1080/50i output then he can use HD component no problem.

    He doesn't state that his display ONLY has VGA inputs, just that it ALSO has a VGA input. I think he was asking if the VGA in would support 720/50p if the component HD inputs didn't?

    I guess using an HD component to VGA transcoder might help if the VGA input WILL accept 720/50p signals - the only thing is to test it with a 720/50p source and a transcoder I guess? (Or a PC running Powerstrip set up for 720/50p output)
     
  11. Tarbat

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    Yes, Sky's HD website states that "Provided you TV has a minimum native resolution of 720 lines and will support 720p/50 or 1080i/25". Note the OR, suggesting that the HD box will convert between the two formats.
     
  12. gizlaroc

    gizlaroc
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    I know he hasn't only got vga in, if you read his post he says that it won't accept all the signals over component, but he has tested the vga with a scaler and that is fine, therefore he has already worked out he just needs a transcoder and was asking for advice on the Audio Authority unit, hence my reccomendations for the other 2 which give better results.
     
  13. HeweyBoy101

    HeweyBoy101
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    I said NON HD READY, not NON HD!

    My Plasma has HD resolution, it's just not HD READY, in that it does not offer the required connection options. That's what I am trying to overcome.

    ... and don't call me stupid !

    PS - thanks Gizlaroc for the alternative suggestions - I'll look into these as well.
     
  14. Tarbat

    Tarbat
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    Why not just use the 1080i component input?
     
  15. HeweyBoy101

    HeweyBoy101
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    Yeah - I might still do that - I'm just considering options at this stage. I am not 100% sure if the component inputs will accept 1080i. I have not been able to test this - all I know is that it definately will not take any type of progressive input.
     
  16. HeweyBoy101

    HeweyBoy101
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    Having read more on these forums, and with an eye on my likely future needs, I am now leaning toward purchasing the Iscan Scaler (VP30). Although costly, this seems about as future proof as I can get. It will :

    1) Act as a single AV hub for all video switching and processing.
    2) Single cable connection from processor to screen.
    2) Enable me to use my current plasma panel with analogue VGA connection, to include processing and upscaling of component video signals, for DVD, Sky HD (when it arrives), and current Sky or Freeview (via RGBs connection).
    3) When I eventually upgrade to an HD Ready panel then I can simply swap VGA cable for HDMI, and utilise the HDMI inputs on the scaler for Sky HD / DVD / and even HD-DVD and / or Blu-ray in due course. The VP30 has 4 HDMI inputs.


    I was looking at HD Ready TV's recently, but was put off due to limited connectivity (HDMI). Not sure on price of VP30 at present, but I assume about £1,100. If I then go on to buy (say) a Pannasonic 37PV500 (or possibly PHD8 which I gather is the better option), then the total cost of the scaler + TV / panel will be no more than Philips are asking for their 37" LCD (37PF9830). I expect that their are some hidden costs (cables / input boards for panel etc. + possibly ISF calibration).

    Anyway, no rush to make a decision as yet, but this is definitely the route I am looking at. It solves my current problem, and provides a clear upgrade path for the future.
     
  17. HeweyBoy101

    HeweyBoy101
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    This information is wrong. I've just checked the Sky HD website - it clearly states that your TV must be able to accept both resolutions.

    It is "AND" not "OR".
     
  18. matt_p

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    It is and it isn't. One page says OR, another page says AND.

    The "What do I need?" section says 'AND', the "FAQ - I HAVE ALREADY GOT AN HD RESOLUTION TV BUT..." section says 'OR'.

    Rubbish quality of info from Sky!
     
  19. Tarbat

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    No, it's NOT wrong. The bit of the website you're referring to is under the heading "Is you TV HD-Ready", and the HD-Ready requirement is for it to handle both 720p and 1080i. But, the bit of the website under the heading "I have already got an HD resolution TV....", clearly states that if you've already got an HD resolution TV, as long as it can handle either 720p or 1080i over component, then you'll be able to use SkyHD. See attachment.
     
  20. james_19742000

    james_19742000
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    So in theory if this is what Sky are saying, then us owners of the compatible non compatible 42PD5200 we would be able to have the first generation Sky HD box and plug it into the componant input on our panels and have full Sky regardless of the fact that our panels dont support 720p/50 then? As in theory the box will convert it to a resolution the TV will accept then? Oh the joys of Sky HD!!! Why cant they just release the technical info on the box and have done with it all, that way would would know ehere we stand and what we have to do, personally I am not really too interested in Sky HD at the moment, but if the first generation Sky Box will get the best out of my panel without having to buy scalers etc then it coudl force my hand to do it, so who knows, hopefully Sky will release more details soon!

    James
     
  21. Welwynnick

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    That's a very good plan, but can I suggest something? If you want to make the most of Sky HD, currently available video processors are very good with SD sources, but not with HD. There will be processors available next month/year which work properly with HD, but they will be expensive.

    But there is an exception to this. The forum's favourite, the Lumagen Vision HDP, has extra hardware processing capability for HD inputs, and an imminent firmware upgrade will give it the long-awaited HD inverse telecine de-interlacing capability. This won't help with video, but if you are watching a film from Sky HD (or Blu-Ray....) it will de-interlace a 1080i signal properly. That's a big plus that you won't get anywhere else for the price. The Vision doesn't look great, or have lip-sync correction, but it does have very good connectivity. If I don't recommend it, somebody else will surely be along shortly to do so.....

    regards, Nick

    (No 720p on component? I ... don't ... belieeeeeeve it!)
     
  22. Welwynnick

    Welwynnick
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    Yup. That's the whole point of having component outputs on the first generation HD Sky box - so most people with HD panels will be able to use it. Only possible problem is that some programmes may only be available through the HDMi output, though. Anyway, I'm pretty sure that other manufacturers aren't as stupid as Philips in not giving their YUV inputs HD capability, though.

    Nick
     
  23. Tim_Q

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    Well I've just dug this old post out because I still have a Philips 37PF9965 and I'm looking at HD options without upgrading the screen for now....

    I'm thinking of using the HDFury http://www.hdfury.com/ to hook up a blu-ray player to the VGA port. I'm thinking this will give me a reasonable improvment on my standard DVD player through component inputs.

    Any thoughts from those in the know?! I'm still quite new to HD so I'm going to try and get hold of a blu-ray machine to test it out in this config. As the native resolution of the screen is 1024x1024 I'm of the belief this still classes as HD even if not into the realms of 1080p.

    Any opinions on this and the hdfury welcome!!!
     

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