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Why is CRT SD pic clear compared to Plasma,LED

ALIEN1X

Active Member
Hi, I'm looking to upgrade my sony triniton wide screen tv for an HD screen.

I have been looking at the new Panosonic VT30 and Samsung 8000 series Plasma/LED tvs.

I have been down to some show rooms to view (Currys, John Lewis, House of Frazer and my brother inn laws plasma at home. I noted that for Blue Ray/HD-DVD movies, these new HD screens are very good.

However, I have noted that CRT looks much better, clearer, sharp and crystal clear when watching broadcast Freview SD channels in comparrison with Plasma/LED tvs which apear bluered, juder edges, over saturated colours,motion blur,pixelation etc. Even the HD channels are not as good as my CRT.

Can someone kindly explain why? I get the feeling that these new TVS are only designed for HD- DVD/blueray discs and not broadcast material?
 

Matt_C

Distinguished Member
CRT are without a doubt, better for SD material than any other TV type on the market. And the main reason is resolution. SD TV in the UK is broadcast at 576i - that means it has 576 horizontal lines (line 1 at the top, line 576 at the bottom of the screen). CRT TV's, in the UK, are geared for 576i - thats the resolution they support.

99% of plasmas, LCD and LED TV's have a much higher resolution, minimum is usually 720p, but nearly all TV's now have a native resolution of 1080p - this means they have 1080 lines top to bottom. So naturally, the 576 line SD TV broadcast needs to be enlarged to 1080 lines to fit the screen. This is called scaling. All TV's with a higher, or lower, res than the feed they are being given, be it broadcast TV or DVD, Freeview etc, have to scale the image to fit the screen, whether the feed is larger or smaller than the TV's resolution; ie, 576 needs to be enlarged to 1080 (on a 1080p TV) and a 1080p BluRay needs to be shrunk to fit a 720p display.

Enlarging always degrades quality, no matter how good the scaler is. It's just what happens to an image when it's blown up. Take a video on your computer (say, from YouTube). It might be 360p, and look perfect in it's natural resolution of 360p. But blow it up to full screen, it doesn't look quite as good. Same thing.

Blurring and judder is down to frame rates, over saturated colours is down to how the TV is set up/configured in it's colour and brightness/contrast settings. By default, in the TV shop, such as Currys, etc, these settings are awful, and can be vastly improved upon
 

ALIEN1X

Active Member
oK I'm begining to understand better now.

However, it has not amswered why CRT freview SD channels look better than HD freview on these new tvs? Or is this back to your answer on 576i broadcasts?

I have also compared SD V HD channell on plasma/LED, and I could not see much diffrence .ie BBC, E4, ITV

Can the Plasma/led down scale to 576i SD material so it looks as good or better than CRT?
 

Matt_C

Distinguished Member
You last line makes no sense. The panel in the plasma/LED is most likely 1080. You can't change this to 576. It is how many physical pixels are in the screen panel. Downscaling means taking a video feed of a higher resolution and making it a smaller resolution - for example taking a 1080p BluRay and downscaling it to fit a 720p screen : reducing the resolution of the video feed to that of the panel. You cannot reduce the physical panel resolution to match a video resolution.

Take a can of coke. It's what, 10cm tall? You can't make that fit in a 4cm hole without breaking it
 

AlandEi

Active Member
However, it has not amswered why CRT freview SD channels look better than HD freview on these new tvs?

Do you mean that Freeview SD on a CRT, looks better than Freeview HD on a plasma or LCD set ?

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, I suppose a lot depends on how the TV is set up, I like the softness of my old Philips CRT, but am blown away by the HD picture on both of my neighbours LCD sets, and SD is very good on theirs also... whether I will be able to live with a sharper picture, or soften it eventually, I am not sure, but at least I will be able to see all of the widescreen picture on the new set... :)

Alan.
 

Matt_C

Distinguished Member
Can't answer the question about Freeview HD asI don't have it - the only HD stuff I play back through my (1080p) plasma are HD video files, and those are nearly always 720p (so upscaled by the TV to fill the 1920x1080 panel)
 

russ331

Active Member
However, it has not amswered why CRT freview SD channels look better than HD freview on these new tvs? Or is this back to your answer on 576i broadcasts?

I have also compared SD V HD channell on plasma/LED, and I could not see much diffrence .ie BBC, E4, ITV

I couldn't disagree more. My TV is fairly modest (Samsung LE40C580), however, I prefer it's SD picture quality (Freeview source) to that of any CRT I've ever seen, including Sony Trinitron. HD Freeview is up to 5 times the picture quality of SD Freeview, & the difference is clear on my TV.
 

giangdarookie2

Active Member
oK I'm begining to understand better now.

However, it has not amswered why CRT freview SD channels look better than HD freview on these new tvs? Or is this back to your answer on 576i broadcasts?

I have also compared SD V HD channell on plasma/LED, and I could not see much diffrence .ie BBC, E4, ITV

Can the Plasma/led down scale to 576i SD material so it looks as good or better than CRT?

you can only upscale in this case :) scaling is something you do to fit the image to the panel native resolution. In this case 1980 x 1080.

if its smaller u up scale if its bigger you down scale.

please keep in mind that SD is starting to be less and less the purchasing point. so if i buy an HD TV i wanna make sure HD material look the best on it SD is secondary now. U might still watch it from time to time. but once u put a blu ray in, theres no turning back :)
 
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ALIEN1X

Active Member
I can not see any diffrence on the LED/Plasmas when watching BBC etc in HD or SD mode? I have tried this on my sisters Panosonic G20 with Virgin Media Cable TV, Currys show rooms, John Lewis etc


I do feel that the public are miss lead in buying these new tv's
that are designed for HD DVD/Blue Ray only, and I can see the big improvement from that perspective.

But for broadcast material CRT sd freeview appears better than HD Broadcast on plasma/LED.

Sorry for repeating my self, just thought I may have not made my question original clear? Unless I'm miss understanding something.

I'm trying to find out as much as I can from people who may have had tested this before I purchase a plasma? or It may mean sticking to CRT and the digi-box untill the technology improves on broadcst material?
 

Matt_C

Distinguished Member
I'd stick with your CRT then, because if you can't see a difference between BBC HD and BBC SD, you're wasting your money buying a HDTV
 

giangdarookie2

Active Member
I can not see any diffrence on the LED/Plasmas when watching BBC etc in HD or SD mode? I have tried this on my sisters Panosonic G20 with Virgin Media Cable TV, Currys show rooms, John Lewis etc


I do feel that the public are miss lead in buying these new tv's
that are designed for HD DVD/Blue Ray only, and I can see the big improvement from that perspective.

But for broadcast material CRT sd freeview appears better than HD Broadcast on plasma/LED.

Sorry for repeating my self, just thought I may have not made my question original clear? Unless I'm miss understanding something.

I'm trying to find out as much as I can from people who may have had tested this before I purchase a plasma? or It may mean sticking to CRT and the digi-box untill the technology improves on broadcst material?

ok be more specific, how big is the CRT and how big was a LED?

in order to see the HD "thing" you have to have atleast 42 inch and more.

if u are comparing an sd pic with a 28 CRT with an HD 40 inch LED it migh not be as night and day :)
 

AlandEi

Active Member
I have have just taken delivery of our Panasonic TX-L37E30B a couple of hours ago, and after setting up, then switching to Cinema mode and turning off CATS, IFC ect, as recommended by other Panasonic owners, find that the upscaling of Freeview SD content remarkable on this set, even the notoriously poor Bid TV channels ect., are a great improvement on our old Philips 28" CRT, though I must admit, that set may be getting tired.

Definitely a difference in quality between HD (BBC1, ITV1) content and SD content, HD "shines", but SD is also excellent, on this particular set.

Early days, but these are my first impressions.

Alan.
 

ALIEN1X

Active Member
My tv is a CRT 24'' wide screen Sony Triniton with a Topfield 5800 pvr freeview box. I have had this TV since approx 1995 and still going strong.

I would like to upgrade for a HD TV that can output excellent broadcasted tv channels, so far I have not seen any.

The HD TVS I have seen are Panasonic g20+vt30 - 42 inch and bigger, samsung 8000 series plasma + 7000/8000 series LED 40'' and bigger.

Could it be something to do with how its setup/calibrated?
 
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ALIEN1X

Active Member
I'd stick with your CRT then, because if you can't see a difference between BBC HD and BBC SD, you're wasting your money buying a HDTV

Only difffence I can see is when you watch HD DVD/Blur ray films, not on broadcasted matererial as mentioned.No problems with my eyes either, I have a sharp eye for detail.

Unless theres somthing odd about my CRT being super duper. I have heard that the triniton/wega series by Sony was the best crt ever made. My sister has the 28'' version + Pany G20 plasma and noted the same as I had mentioned. Just trying to get my head round it.
 

AlandEi

Active Member
I believe that in store settings, are not really representative of how we would set up in the home environment, usually garish and brash, to compensate for in store lighting, and many sets benefit from the "tweaks" recommended in the various makes/models toics on here.
I can only say as I have found, though admit that my old Philips was not to the standard of your current CRT, the picture always on the soft side.

Alan.
 

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