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upscaling on DVD - advice please.

Discussion in 'Blu-ray & DVD Players & Recorders' started by wannabeav, Mar 17, 2005.

  1. wannabeav

    wannabeav
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    I am currently looking at a new DVD player, amp and Plsma and am trying to get some sort of budget together. :D Probably about £4K all in. Would be very grateful for any advice or a link to a similar thread (not found it yet though)

    Questions are:
    1)a number of less expensive DVD players (Panasonic S97, Samsung HD945) feature upscaling, however some more expensive models (Pioneer 668AV) dont seem to mention this. Is this due to the Pany and Samsugn being newer models or do some higher priced units leave the scaling to the plasma? Is the upscaling any good on these entry level units?
    2)Plasma will have a DVI / HDMI connection. Is a medium priced DVD player (£4-500) better with a good set of component leads or is a cheapy HDMI/DVI DVD player going to win everytime?
    3)Should I just go for one of the cheaper options with HDMI for now and await HD-DVD / Blu Ray when that becomes affordable in 2/3/x years time?

    Thanks for any thoughts :)
     
  2. KraGorn

    KraGorn
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    Upscaling players are really only useful if you have a display (plasma, projector etc.) with a high(ish) resolution such as 1280x720, so before deciding on the player you need to decide on the plasma you're getting.

    That said, to answer your questions:

    1) there are now several cheap scaling projectors, those you list together with the Momitsu V880 which I have, and they all produce good results for the price. You're right that the 668 doesn't scale, the 868 does and is very good (but at a price).

    2) An HDMI/DVI is not guaranteed to be better than component.

    3) Hard to answer, it depends on the display you choose as to whether it's worth going HDMI at all and then whether scaling is useful. My experience is that the V880N gives the Pioneer 868 a good run for its' money (£200 vs. £800) and with a lowish res. projector such as a Panny then the difference would probably be nigh on impossible to see. IMX, differences become more apparent the larger the screen and higher the resolution.
     
  3. wannabeav

    wannabeav
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    Thanks, Jury still out on all kit but Plasma will either be Pioneer 435XDE, Panasonic Viera 500 or Panasonic PHD7 (a headache in it's own right!) so res is the same across the board (1024*768) therefore, would scaling to 768p work the best? (is this even an option), If this is possible would you know if the plasma scaling is then avoided or would it be best to just pass these plasmas a signal and let them take care of business? (if I go with the HD7 chaces are I'll get a scaler). Sorry for the basic questions, want to make sure I have the base covered before demoing.

    Thanks.
    JP
     
  4. KraGorn

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    No problem with 'basic' questions, there are a lot of basics to covers. :smashin:

    With that resolution then scaling in the PC is certainly the preferred route, you'd just need to ensure the plasma you choose will accept 'native resolution' input via either DVI or RGB/VGA .. I'm not a plasma owner but do know there's at least one plasma that won't, could be a Hitachi, you'd find mention of it over in the 'Processors' forum where scalers are discussed.

    The point at issue is which device is better at scaling, the source or the display, in this case the PC will easily out-perform the plasma in terms of PQ.

    Just one thing, you say "I'll get a scaler", that won't be necessary or indeed too useful, the PC itself will do the scaling.
     
  5. wannabeav

    wannabeav
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    Cheers again, this will be a stand alone setup though, no PC (at this stage anyway - that'll be the next upgrade :D ). Think I've got a shortlist now on players:
    Small £:
    Samsung HD945, Panasonic S97, Denon 1910
    Big £:
    Pioneer 668, Denon 2910, Marantz DV6500
    Might as well have a look at the 868 too - might even be able to ditch the seperate CD player then.
    Thanks :smashin:
     
  6. KraGorn

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    :oops: .. sorry, confused you with someone else asking similar questions to use with an HTPC.

    There are very few players with the ability to define a custom resolution (none of those you list can, not even the 868) and so a scaler like the Lumagen DVI would be your best solution I think, in which case you'd be looking for the best quality component as none of those feed interlaced via digital so you'd not benefit from the scaler's deinterlacer.

    Also be aware that if you feed HDMI into the scaler it won't output via component, only DVI/HDCP .. which means your display had better support HDCP.

    I run an 868 into an HDP and the PQ is stunning, better than the best HTPC PQ I was able to achieve after much playing .. not a cheap solution but damned impressive. My only doubt about it in your case is whether the resolution/size of the plasma would show it to best effect or whether a cheaper solution would be nearly as good.
     
  7. wannabeav

    wannabeav
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    No problem and thanks for the advice. I'm probably with you on the cheaper solution being as good, had a demo of the plasmas but that just gave me the bug to upgrade everything so need to look at the above players with the screens (and if poss using the scaler on the HD panel). Interestingly the cheapy Samsung seems to be able to output at 768p so that could be a good option until HD-DVD becomes afforadable. Thanks again
     
  8. stormjai

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    Slightly off topic, but is it possible to loop sky+ through these players, and will they upscale the picture? I have Pio 434, but sky+ not great on this!!

    New panasonic s97 ( see other thread) has upscaling and HDMI ( which Pio 434 has, but never used) - would this fit the bill??

    thanks for any advice
     
  9. KraGorn

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    No DVD player I am aware of will scale an input signal .. the Momitsu V880 has been rumoured for a long time to be going to have an external input scaling ability but nothing's come of it .. you'd need an external scaler such as the Lumagen for that.
     

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