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To scale or not to scale

Discussion in 'TAG McLaren Audio Owners' Forum' started by Thunder, Sep 15, 2004.

  1. Thunder

    Thunder
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    Next on my upgrade list is a new projector( to make more use of my newly aquired DVD32Rs video abilities) and I have a budget of roughly 3K. The question is should I spend about 1500 to 2000 on a projector like the new Panny AE700/Sony HS51 and get a dedicated scaler like a I scan HD or Lumagen or PSM. Or should I spend all 3K on a projector will half decent internal scaling :confused: What are peoples opinions on the PSM considering it now costs 1500? How does it compare to offboard solutions like I scan HD which scale as well as deinterlace for less cash?
     
  2. Laingy

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    I cannot comment on a projector (I have the series 4 panasonic plasma), but I have just bought a lumagen pro to scale my DV27 and digibox and the difference has been most impressive, on close inspection of the plasma picture there is a distinct lack of artifacts and the picture is 'more pleasant' to watch. I even ended up watching loads of my favourite films again. So I would definitely recommend going for a dedicated scaler, one of my best purchases.
     
  3. lenny

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    Actually the PSM is a progressive scan module. Its output has the standard resolution for PAL or NTSC.

    The Tag Scaler is the VM2048. It is a fantastic piece of hardware but its price is "only" 5k.

    Regards, Lenny
     
  4. Thunder

    Thunder
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    As I said in my post Lenny, I am aware that the PSM only deinterlaces. Which is why I asked the question about the value it offers compared to offboard solutions that scale and deinterlace for less money. If I could afford the upgrade to AV192 and the VSM then I think id be looking at the Barco cine 8 rather than 3K designs :laugh: But I guess I can always dream :D
     
  5. Barry.NI

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    Has anyone got a VSM2048 scaler, especially one that has been fitted since TMA proper demised? As my AV192R is in for a Six Week rpair, it might be an idea to get it upgraded at the same time. Is there a chance that IAG might reduce the cost, if they only have a few boards left in stock, and they did not have to pay for the development costs. I am presently running a Panny 43 Plasma and a Barco 7LT, with a PSM on the processor. At normal viewing distance (3M) the picture looks superb, but the Barco is set up for Line Doubling only. I tried a Crystalio 2300, but it did not like working with an RGBHV distributor box 1 in 3 out, giving a very distorted icture, yet is happy with the PSM output of the TAG AV192R. A TAG onboard scaler might work better.
     
  6. Joelc

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    Thunder:

    Can you either provide a link to the Sony HS51 or explain how the HS51 compares to the HS20.

    Many thanks,

    Joel
     
  7. jbm007

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    The Sony HS 51 stole the show @ CEDIA in Indianapolis, IN USA last week.
    Hands down by all installers THE BEST FOR "THE MONEY" PROJECTOR ON THE PLANET.
    checkout http://www.avsforum.com for the lowdown.
     
  8. Thunder

    Thunder
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    I think you will find they are still building the scalers to order in Woking as Barry told me he has to drop off the components there. Also IAG have actually put the upgrade prices up ;)
     
  9. bryeden

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    The Iscan HD deinterlaces as well as scales and at about £900 is reasonable value for an external scaler.
    There is a new model due out soon the Iscan HD+ which will scale 720p and 1080p inputs, worth investigating.
     
  10. jbm007

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    Personally I don't think a scaler of this quality will improve much as it relates to cost.
    Its like using a cannon to kill a fly; on any tv or projector under 60inches in size its overkill.
    I am using it with a 123 inch screen and a Sony qualia 004. Now thats worth coming home for more than the wife.
     
  11. Joelc

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    Barry.NI

    I have a VSM2048 that was fitted by TMA before their (unfortunate and uintimely) demise. If you were a reader of the TMA forun you may recall that my scaler had a compatibility issue with my display unit... then a Toshiba 57HDX82.

    And yes... it was overkill. But as I live in Canada I did not want to have to sned my AV192 back to the UK twice as I was, at the time, planning on going with a FP. I will have a FP installed within the next 4 to 6 weeks and will be able to provide more details at that time -- hopefully the scaler will work with the FP. I will note that the dealer/installer who is doing the system played with the scaler at his shop and thought that the results were tremendous. I hope they are given what the bloody thing costs!

    And no... I am not going super high end or DLP re: projector. I feel that the price/quality of FP will cotinue to drop/improve rapidly and, for that reason, view the projector as somewhat "disposable". I will therefore be sticking with LCD and getting one of:

    -- Hitachi PJ-TX100 which Thunder has;
    -- Sony VPL-HS20; or
    -- Sony VPL-HS51.

    Hope the above helped.

    Joel
     
  12. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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    JBM: I think you'll find that even some low cost scalers can make a big difference in quality on some displays. Do not assume that just because something is expensive it's good.

    Incidentally have you spoken to Lumagen about the possibility of trying one of their scalers on your Qualia. I know that some very limited testing went on recently and that Sony themselves are now wanting to get hold of one. The Lumagens, even the £1200 HDP unit, are able to create a 108024SPF signal that removes the motion judder associated with 24 to 60 telecine, something Sony's own processing cannot......

    Having seen a Qualia yet again on this last trip to USA I am still very, very jealous of you though!

    Gordon
     
  13. jbm007

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    Gordon

    I think you misunderstood my comment. Given the high cost of the TAG scaler I felt that there was a diminising return. Hence my comment regarding a cannon to kill a fly. Spending 10,000US dollars for a scaler to upscale to a 3000US dollars plasma tv is overkill. You are right there are several very good lower cost scalers that can do an excellant job at helping improve an image on a smaller "under 60 inch tv or pj". And no I have not directly talked to them, but I have feelers out. Will keep you posted. Maybe I can do a side by side comparison with the TAG scaler.
     
  14. Gordon @ Convergent AV

    Gordon @ Convergent AV
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  15. GrahamMG

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    Hi JBM.

    Yep I have always said that the VSM needs a quality display to justify its expense, sure it does make a difference on cheaper kit but I've always fell off my chair when people hook it up to a £2-3k standard res display.
     
  16. Kenny Glasgow

    Kenny Glasgow
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    Gordon

    You cut a fine dash in yer kilt :thumbsup:
     
  17. Barry.NI

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    Joel,

    Yes I followed your scaler problems with great interest, like you I feel that a window of opportunity has opened up, as the processor is to be away for six weeks anyway, for what may well only prove to be a simple fault! It might therefore, be a good time to get the scaler fitted. I am quite surprised to hear that so many people are having the AV192R upgraded with a VSM2048 , to equipment which at best could well have an uncertain future. The six weeks turn round. for repairs is a case in point. I seem to remember that the CEO of TMA communicated with you over a weekend in order to try to sort out the problems with your display versus VSM 2048, far cry from now, when the Helpline shuts down whilst Barry is on leave. We did not appreciate how lucky we were.
    I was advised that IAG inherited 14 scaler boards from TMA, at the time of the buy out, (unconfirmed info from dealer who telephoned them whilst I was in the shop). Using an onboard scaler, such as the VSM2048 with an AV192R, is a better option for me than a separate unit, apart from the cost, as a separate scaler requires bypassing the PSM switching facility, (switching off the PSM also deactivates the switching facility). and doing the progressive scan and scaling in the one unit, thus losing the versatility of the abilty of the AV192R, to convert a variety of inputs, S-video, component, RGBs to a common output RGBHV, feeding two displays, Plasma and CRT PJ. I tried feeding the CRT RGBHV with the SKY+ connected to the HDTV input of the PSM, which is supposed to pass the signal through the AV192R, unprocessed, but it still turned off the Line Multiplier in the Barco 7LT, which implies some form of processing.
    It is only a week or so ago that I posted a thread, how beautifully TMA equipment worked so seamlessly together, now without the processor, nothing works, not even the TV., and there is just a big hole in the display cabinet.

    Would still be nice to hear from anyone who has recently had a scaler from IAG fitted!
     
  18. Joelc

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    Barry.NI:

    Please note the following in response to your post:

    1. From everything I have heard the VSM 2048 is truely top drawer -- I wish that I could let you know via first hand exeperience but alas, I do not have my new display.

    2. I would, assuming you are comfortable with cost, purchase the scaler based on its performance, its "integration" (as you note), etc.

    3. The support I received from Udo and John re: VSM 2048 issues was unbelievable. I do not believe that another either exists today or ever will exist with that level of dedication/support. It is simply a fact of life!! It is most unfortunate how IAG has dropped the ball in Barry's abscence.

    4. Why can you not get your dealer to lend you a pre/pro in the meantime so that your kit will function... at least in some level?

    5. Why do you say that the AV192R and VSM 2048 have an uncertain future. Their future is that if any technology that exists today... it is aging. That said.. it is state-of-the-art technology which should remain "competitive or better" for some years to come.

    And lastly... I am hoping to have my new display device within the next month or two and will advise you then wrt the quality of the scaler.

    Cheers,

    Joel
     
  19. Barry.NI

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    Hi Joel,

    4. My dealer has stopped selling TAG equipment, and has sold off all his stock

    5. Probably just me being cynical! I am sure that the AV192R is competitive, for some time, but things move very fast in the AV business, it looks like we may get HDTV next year from SKY, and many of the new Plasmas are incorporating progressive scan and scaling into their new displays. It is just the general lack of interest from IAG, that is evident on this side of the pond; The six week turn around on repairs and upgrades is a case in point.

    I look forward to hearing how you get on with the new display, and no I am not too happy about the price for the VSM2048, but having tried cheaper versions without success, I do not really have any option, if as we all do, I want to chase the holy grail of perfection.

    Cheers
     
  20. Joelc

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    Barry:

    4. Time for a new dealer. My local dealer does not carry TMA (i.e. TMA is not even sold in Canada) yet when I sent my AV32R to TMA for conversion/upgrade to an AV192R my local dealer lent me a Bryston pre/pro for the better part of two months. I guess that your dealer does not want any more money from you!!!

    5. While I agree that disaplys are continuing to include both deinterlacers and scaler I think that the question that needs to be asked is this -- what is their quality relative to that of the PSM192 and VSM2048. Perhaps Graham, John, Udo or others could anser but I suspect those from TMA are far advanced relative to those currently (or even in the near future) "built in".

    And yes... no one is looking more forward to my new display than me. I will most assuredly keep you well advised as I get along.

    Cheers,

    Joel
     
  21. GrahamMG

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    You really cannot expect any "built-in" scaler/deinterlacer within the display to be of the same quality as a VSM/PSM module combination (which naturally should survive a few display upgrades), however because the display manufacturer only needs to design something for the screen it will always be nailed to does make it cheaper (fixed panel res, no setup menu programming etc......) And mass market product will always be churned out cheaper than small volume high cost product........Having said that I personally haven't seen a built in solution to worry the VSM/PSM.....
     

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