360 720p DVD output via VGA.. - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 22 Old 06-11-2006, 06:06 AM - Thread Starter
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I am testing an xbox 360 on my system and noticed that you can get 720p DVD output via the VGA dongle....is this possible with the component dongle too?

BTW..the dvd output looks pretty lousy...
-Alex-
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post #2 of 22 Old 06-11-2006, 07:00 AM
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No - it's not allowed for legal reasons.
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post #3 of 22 Old 06-11-2006, 10:54 AM - Thread Starter
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This seems a little odd as the component HD connection is analog like the VGA....I wonder why the VGA can output at 720p and the component is forced to 480p. Does anyone have any experience with using the DVD output with an external scaler?

The 360 has so much potential as a media center. It is a great shame that they have hamstrung it like this. I specifically wish that it had:
  • an HDMI connection
  • ability to play or stream vob and ifo files
  • some form of basic color and aspect control in the DVD player
  • ability to use 3rd party filters

I am sure many others have brought this up.
-Alex-
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post #4 of 22 Old 06-11-2006, 10:54 AM
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They will output 720p and 1080i over component when the HD-DVD add-on arrives so the legal issues are not the reason. Maybe they will include component SD-DVD upconversion with the fall update.

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post #5 of 22 Old 06-11-2006, 12:23 PM
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Are they going to update it for free to allow it to play HD-DVD? I'd love more info on the 360's upgrade to HD-DVD!

So, is the overall quality for everything better with the VGA cable? If everything else is 100% equal, but DVD playback is better, I will switch to the VGA cable. I currently am using the component cables, but my Samsung LN-S3252D LCD takes VGA.
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post #6 of 22 Old 06-11-2006, 12:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Noose
They will output 720p and 1080i over component when the HD-DVD add-on arrives so the legal issues are not the reason. Maybe they will include component SD-DVD upconversion with the fall update.
The hd-dvd drive will output high res for HD-DVD formatted disks not for commercial DVD disks. HD-DVD will fall under different licensing agreements than DVD where analog high def has different rules.

Licensing is the reason the component is excluded but as explained by another poster VGA being the older analog connection type was "grandfathered" and thus avoids the licensing restrictions. Notice also how few upconverting DVD players do it over component connections.


Quote:
So, is the overall quality for everything better with the VGA cable? If everything else is 100% equal, but DVD playback is better, I will switch to the VGA cable. I currently am using the component cables, but my Samsung LN-S3252D LCD takes VGA.
I switched to VGA on one of my displays for that exact reason, because pretty much everything else was equal, but that is certainly specific display and calibration dependant.

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post #7 of 22 Old 06-11-2006, 01:05 PM
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Ok cool. I'll grab the VGA cable when out today then.

Is MSFT going to just release an update for the software to allow for HD-DVD or will it be a purchased thing?
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post #8 of 22 Old 06-11-2006, 01:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mabelrode
No - it's not allowed for legal reasons.
There are no legal reasons relevant to any law I have ever seen.
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post #9 of 22 Old 06-11-2006, 01:07 PM
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Quote:
Is MSFT going to just release an update for the software to allow for HD-DVD or will it be a purchased thing?
It'll certainly require an update but most details are unknown at this point.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kylebisme
There are no legal reasons relevant to any law I have ever seen.
Reportedly it's in the DVD licensing agreement, assuming a company has agreed to abide by the license.

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post #10 of 22 Old 06-11-2006, 01:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dahlsim
Reportedly it's in the DVD licensing agreement, assuming a company has agreed to abide by the license.
I have heard that from others as well, but I have yet to see any such restriction actually sighted.
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post #11 of 22 Old 06-11-2006, 02:03 PM
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I picked up one of these today. Yes, it will do 720P for DVD playback but after doing some A/B comparisons with my HTPC the VGA dongle will be returned. Not even close to the HTPC, albeit a bit of a unfair comparison as I use ffdshow and such. Although even with my ffdshow turned off the HTPC still looked much better...just my .02$

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post #12 of 22 Old 06-11-2006, 02:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kylebisme
I have heard that from others as well, but I have yet to see any such restriction actually sighted.
I have seen it actually posted and linked to on these boards but that's for someone that care's enough to go search for it.

In all honesty though the fact that almost every manufacturer of upscaling DVD players does it over HDMI but specifically excludes doing it over component should really tell the story shouldn't it?

Just look at the 360 itself which will upscale over component using the same DVD files streamed over a network connection but not of those files are contained on a DVD formatted disk. Seems pretty obvious...

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post #13 of 22 Old 06-11-2006, 02:13 PM
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There are some confusing laws involving DVDs and HDCP. If there was nothing holding back component upconverting then we should be able to walk into Fry's or Best Buy and buy a DVD player that does that. I got yelled at posting something similar in the Teamxbox forums because someone didn't understand why Microsoft didn't allow upconverting over component.
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post #14 of 22 Old 06-11-2006, 03:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dahlsim
I have seen it actually posted and linked to on these boards but that's for someone that care's enough to go search for it.
It's for anyone who cares to back the claim with fact rather than:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dahlsim
In all honesty though the fact that almost every manufacturer of upscaling DVD players does it over HDMI but specifically excludes doing it over component should really tell the story shouldn't it?

Just look at the 360 itself which will upscale over component using the same DVD files streamed over a network connection but not of those files are contained on a DVD formatted disk. Seems pretty obvious...
Circumstantial evidence.
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post #15 of 22 Old 06-11-2006, 05:17 PM
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Here is the documentation (get the original from the DVD CCA if you think this is an altered version, although I believe you have to be a licensee to get a copy directly):

http://cyber.law.harvard.edu/seminar...2/02-08CSS.pdf

This is the DVD CCA Procedural Specification. The relevant section is 6.2.1.1(2), which states

Quote:
(2) Higher Resolution Outputs. Absent an amendment to these CSS
Procedural Specifications, DVD Player analog outputs with higher
resolution than standard definition are not authorized to be used for CSS
Video Data, except to the extent that the content encrypted using CSS that
is contained on a particular DVD Disc is itself recorded on that DVD Disc
in a higher resolution and the copy protection information in the data
recorded onto the disc (in the form of CGMS information or information
to trigger the use of the Automatic Gain Control copy protection
technology) affirmatively indicates that no analog copy protection is
intended to be invoked by the content provider, in which case outputs with
resolution equivalent to that recorded onto the DVD Disc are authorized
for such content. Licensee should be aware that copy protection
technologies and related requirements for higher resolution outputs may
be adopted in the future. At that time, appropriate requirements will be
added to these CSS Procedural Specifications.
So upconverting over component would violate the DVD CCA License. The legal issue is one of contract law, given the contract signed to get a CCA License.
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post #16 of 22 Old 06-11-2006, 05:44 PM
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I have an Oppo upconverting player and it does wonders...I just purchased the VGA cable and wasnt really impressed it didnt look that much better (if at all)....I am satisfied with using Media Center and streaming the movies over to the 360 upconverted.
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post #17 of 22 Old 06-12-2006, 09:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ferrisg
Here is the documentation (get the original from the DVD CCA if you think this is an altered version, although I believe you have to be a licensee to get a copy directly):

http://cyber.law.harvard.edu/seminar...2/02-08CSS.pdf

This is the DVD CCA Procedural Specification. The relevant section is 6.2.1.1(2), which states



So upconverting over component would violate the DVD CCA License. The legal issue is one of contract law, given the contract signed to get a CCA License.
Thank you Ferrisg, I've also around on this subject many times but you are the first to acutally sight the relevent part of the agreement.

However, that agreement brings question to why MS upscaling DVDs over VGA but not component as they are both analog connections and hence equality applicable to what you quoted above.
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post #18 of 22 Old 06-12-2006, 12:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kylebisme
However, that agreement brings question to why MS upscaling DVDs over VGA but not component as they are both analog connections and hence equality applicable to what you quoted above.
I'm not sure if it answers your question, but I've yet to see a DVD player with VGA out instead of component... *shrug*
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post #19 of 22 Old 06-12-2006, 03:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kylebisme
Thank you Ferrisg, I've also around on this subject many times but you are the first to acutally sight the relevent part of the agreement.

However, that agreement brings question to why MS upscaling DVDs over VGA but not component as they are both analog connections and hence equality applicable to what you quoted above.
Section 6.2.8.2(2)(c) covers this, with the following

Quote:
No provision of this Section 6.2 shall be interpreted
to limit the ability of Integrated Products to be connected,
through analog interfaces, with computer monitor display
devices, for example, using RGB, SVGA, VGA, or similar
proprietary video signals, or the ability of Integrated Products
that are in compliance with this Agreement to display on
such monitor display devices content originally encrypted
using CSS.
This basically says that integrated products (which contains "a DVD Player, DVD Drive, Authenticator, Descrambler, or CSS Decryption Module") can be connected using VGA (or some similar proprietary connection excluding SCART) and display the originally encrypted content.

I originally quoted the clause from 6.2.1 "DVD Players". The "Higher Resolution" clause in 6.2.8.2(2)(b) for "Integrated Products" (which the Xbox 360 would be considered) is very similar, but notes the exception provided in (c) quoted above.
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post #20 of 22 Old 06-12-2006, 07:55 PM
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I found this quote online online to be quite interesting from David Fleischman (Program Manager/Project Manager at Microsoft)



Quote:
For example: With the recent Update Rollup 2 release I got a last minute request from one of our PMs to add functionality to down sample DVD playback to 480p when media center is hooked up via component connections. The basic problem we face is that macrovision (the DVD copy protection program) invokes when a DVD is played back at too high a resolution over an analog connection (this doesn't apply to VGA or DVI or HDMI).
he was talking about change request for media center edition and how CR are handled, but the quote about VGA from a PM made me think the same logic may be applied to the 360
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post #21 of 22 Old 06-12-2006, 09:34 PM
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Thank you Admonish and Ferrisg, interesting info there from both of you. I have known that my HTPC can output up to 1080i over component which was one of the reasons I doubted that DVD players would be restricted from doing exactly the same, but I use VGA and never bothered to check DVD playback quality over component. Seems that while a computer would fall under the "Integrated Products" standards as well, the functionality is crippled for component output by the copy protection anyway.
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post #22 of 22 Old 06-12-2006, 10:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kylebisme
Thank you Admonish and Ferrisg, interesting info there from both of you. I have known that my HTPC can output up to 1080i over component which was one of the reasons I doubted that DVD players would be restricted from doing exactly the same, but I use VGA and never bothered to check DVD playback quality over component. Seems that while a computer would fall under the "Integrated Products" standards as well, the functionality is crippled for component output by the copy protection anyway.

I tested out Batman Begins on my upconverting player via components and then did a comparison running from my pc to my lcd tv via VGA and the component connection looks so grainy and seriously looks like crap......I had it set to 1280x720 but my video card actually will do 1920x1080 but I am a bit reluctant to try that out...But I dont think I will ever go to components again when watching standard dvds.
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