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Some general information please

billybug

Standard Member
I'm a newbie at this and have just bought a decent plasma tv, and the next step is to upgrade and get a better DVD player.

Firstly - whats the difference between Blu Ray or HD DVD and a standard DVD player that utilises HDMI - such as a top end panasonic one?
 

Bald Monkey

Distinguished Member
Blu-ray and HD DVD are both 'next gen' High Definition formats. Both have native 1080 HD images and the ability to include HD audio tracks too..

Standard Upscaling DVD players, offer a good picture from SD DVD's but it is still SD and will never equal HD quality in video or audio.

Most High Def players such as the PS3 (BR) and Toshiba XE1 (HD DVD) offer the same upscaling ability as upscaling SD players, in fact many offer very good SD upscaling.. at least equalling a SD player of a similar price or even more expensive ones.

However unlike SD DVD players, very few are capable of playing Sd DVD's from all regions and will be region coded for SD DVD's.
 

billybug

Standard Member
Right, so even with a very good upscaling DVD player, it will never match what a Blu ray or HD DVD player.

How far from that picture quality will it be?

Fianally - how much better will the upscalling DVD player be than a standard DVD player (with no upscalling)?
I.E. is it worth getting one?
 
tv's upscale any way so it would depend on the quality of both the dvd player and the tv. a good tv will upscale with better results than a bad dvd player would
 
The quick, and simple answer that I will give you is get a PS3. It does all that you are asking.
 

Avi

Distinguished Member
How far from that picture quality will it be?

Fianally - how much better will the upscalling DVD player be than a standard DVD player (with no upscalling)?
I.E. is it worth getting one?

There are a number of factors that come it to play. The main ones are display size, viewing distance (relative to display size) and display resolution. In general terms the bigger the screen and the closer you sit (within reason) the better the PQ relative to SD. As the size increases the resolution becomes a more important factor.

If your displays resolution is greater than 576x720 (PAL) then it will upscale the image even if the DVD player doesn't. The question is which device has the better quality video processing the player or the display. This varies from model to model.

There are also differences between the audio performance and supported standards of DVD versus the HD disc formats to add to the mix.

AVI
 

Bald Monkey

Distinguished Member
I agreee with qwerty you have to check out the quality of specific machines it hard to say that one technology is better than another when the implementation of that tech can vary so massivley between machines.

Again how much better HD is than SD (and it is ;) ) depends on the rest of your kit, and issues such as screen sizes and viewing distances etc.. . There is more to HD than resolution, better compression techniques have led to improvements in the quality for reasons other than just increased resolution.
 

billybug

Standard Member
Thanks guys.

As well as playing Blu Ray, does the PS3 play SD DVD's and if so, does it upscale the standard ones (provided of course that the TV is capable of showing the upscaled image)?

The TV in question is a 1080 Panasonic 42 inch viewed from about 10 feet.

Do you think I would benefit with from an upscaling DVD player, or do you think the TV would make just as good a job of upscaling the image sent by a standard poor dvd player?
 

Avi

Distinguished Member
Thanks guys.

As well as playing Blu Ray, does the PS3 play SD DVD's and if so, does it upscale the standard ones (provided of course that the TV is capable of showing the upscaled image)?

The TV in question is a 1080 Panasonic 42 inch viewed from about 10 feet.

Do you think I would benefit with from an upscaling DVD player, or do you think the TV would make just as good a job of upscaling the image sent by a standard poor dvd player?

The PS3 is a decent DVD player but at your viewing distance/screen size I doubt you will notice the subtle difference between a better quality upscaling DVD player v the display doing the upscaling. One consideration with the PS3 is that DVD playback is region locked as is Blu-ray so you can only play R2 DVD or region B Blu-ray discs on a UK machine. If you import a US PS3 it will only play R1 DVD and region A Blu-ray discs. Most DVD players are multiregion.

The optimum viewing distance for HD on a 1080 50" display is 8'. Beyond this the difference between HD and SD becomes less noticeable due to the limits of average human visual acuity.

What may be more noticeable is motion judder with film material on HD DVD or Blu-ray due to 60hz playback. This is different to 50hz PAL DVD and unlike resolution benefits this artefact can be noticeable from a distance. It looks like the image stutters and is most noticeable on scenes where the camera pans. It is possible to overcome this annoying issue if your display properly supports 24hz input.

AVI
 

KirkSi

Distinguished Member
The PS3 WILL upscale SD DVDs over HDMI and it does a very good job of it as well. Usually a decent upscaling DVD player will do a better job than the TV in upscaling (depends on the upscaling chip in the TV vs the DVD player, but I'd be pretty confident that a PS3 would beat your TVs upscaling). The good thing about the PS3 is you get a decent Blu Ray player & upscaling DVD player & games console all in one neat package.

Edit: you beat me too it AVI
 

Avi

Distinguished Member
The PS3 WILL upscale SD DVDs over HDMI and it does a very good job of it as well. Usually a decent upscaling DVD player will do a better job than the TV in upscaling (depends on the upscaling chip in the TV vs the DVD player, but I'd be pretty confident that a PS3 would beat your TVs upscaling). The good thing about the PS3 is you get a decent Blu Ray player & upscaling DVD player & games console all in one neat package.

Edit: you beat me too it AVI

It really is a bit sad when a games console puts most of the "dediacted" standalones to shame. :( The PS3 has it's own set of issues and audio is a weakness compared to some players but it does the basics well. Plus its speed of operation across BD-J heavy and 1.1 discs it's in a league of it's own currently.

AVI
 

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