XD-E500 Owners thread. - Page 4 - AVS Forum
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post #91 of 1830 Old 08-24-2008, 06:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Star56 View Post

Why do you promote these false notions? I have three HD set ups and none of them are set to vivid. I have hundreds of HD source materials. I know what EE ringing looks like. I really hate DNR.

I like what the E500 does for DVDS.

And I am viewing on an ISF calibrated FP, and a properly (Avia) calibrated Panny plasma. Vivid doesn't exist in my world.

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post #92 of 1830 Old 08-24-2008, 06:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Blacklac View Post

No offense, but I don't think you are going to get much differences from any player on a 37" screen.

I dragged the E500 into my family room and connected it to my 32" Philips- there is little differentiation between it and the Sherwood HTiB connected to it now. Size does matter in these things, I guess.

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post #93 of 1830 Old 08-24-2008, 06:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Kage View Post

I bought this dvd player today to compare it to my Samsung BD-P2550 which has the HQV processor in it. The XD-E500 is not any good. I prefer the DVD playback on the P2550. These are the reasons why that I'm going to return it the XD-E500:
1. No dvd resume (which is very important to me)
2. No time reading on the LED display.
3. I feel that the pic mode settings makes the dvd pq detail worse. The sharp mode causes to much sharpness. The color mode adds too much color. The contrast mode makes the image more gray.
4. I hate it when I have to change pic modes in different scences in the same movie.
5. No pillerboxing for 4x3 dvds.

Mine does resume. I tried it this morning. Interesting.

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post #94 of 1830 Old 08-24-2008, 06:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Goatse View Post

those of you enchanted by the XDE... you realize you can get the same results by buying a el cheapo dvd player than adding sharpness on your tv, noise reduction and contrast enhancer right?? XDE dvd player does not have any new magic pq enhancement. I feel sorry for you for some of the suckers that actually thing this thing makes a sharper picture than your oppo.

I have both and we'll agree to disagree. Turning up the sharpness on any of my displays does nothing like this. It is a mess.

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post #95 of 1830 Old 08-24-2008, 08:31 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by larrimore View Post

I have both and we'll agree to disagree. Turning up the sharpness on any of my displays does nothing like this. It is a mess.

turn up the sharpness with noise reduction. On my tv I can replicate the XDE by upping the detail enhancer on the 60A2000 and pumping up the NR .
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post #96 of 1830 Old 08-24-2008, 11:18 AM
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I still don't understand why the majority of you guys that are not liking it are comparing it to $400 DVD or Blu Ray players. I really think this thing needs to be compared to a cheap player, which is the market that Toshiba is going after. They aren't trying to convince people that Blu Ray isn't necessary. Just that a slightly more expensive DVD player can bring new life to your collection.

Either way, I'll pick one of these up to make my own conclusions as soon as Best Buy carries it.
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post #97 of 1830 Old 08-24-2008, 01:10 PM
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Originally Posted by cbacklund View Post

I still don't understand why the majority of you guys that are not liking it are comparing it to $400 DVD or Blu Ray players. I really think this thing needs to be compared to a cheap player, which is the market that Toshiba is going after. They aren't trying to convince people that Blu Ray isn't necessary. Just that a slightly more expensive DVD player can bring new life to your collection.

Either way, I'll pick one of these up to make my own conclusions as soon as Best Buy carries it.

My thoughts exactly.
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post #98 of 1830 Old 08-24-2008, 04:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cbacklund View Post

I still don't understand why the majority of you guys that are not liking it are comparing it to $400 DVD or Blu Ray players. I really think this thing needs to be compared to a cheap player, which is the market that Toshiba is going after. They aren't trying to convince people that Blu Ray isn't necessary. Just that a slightly more expensive DVD player can bring new life to your collection.

Either way, I'll pick one of these up to make my own conclusions as soon as Best Buy carries it.

I think the problem was that Toshiba marketed its new upconversion technology as a potential Blu-ray killer. With discussions of the cell processor and a "revolutionary" technique to analyze multiple frames, expectation were very high -- that it could potentially beat the best upconversion currently available. However, at least with the current XDE model, these expectation were apparently unrealistic as of right now.
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post #99 of 1830 Old 08-24-2008, 06:10 PM
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Originally Posted by HD_Lantern View Post

I think the problem was that Toshiba marketed its new upconversion technology as a potential Blu-ray killer. With discussions of the cell processor and a "revolutionary" technique to analyze multiple frames, expectation were very high -- that it could potentially beat the best upconversion currently available. However, at least with the current XDE model, these expectation were apparently unrealistic as of right now.

I am not sure that Toshiba ever actually used that term. I think it was a reporter who took that liberty and it stuck for a while. Maybe that is why SOME hate it so much and have bad mouthed it and any possible future actual SRT player that may (or not) come without seeing it.

I never expected this or possibly some even future SRT player to EVER be able to have near equal PQ with BD or HD DVD. It would be nice to get better processing in the displays to handle the 30:1+ SD channels we will still have to watch over the limited HD content still. If they (or anyone else) can do something like that cheap enough for players also I would be interested IF it actually is a decent improvement.

Right now I am unconvinced if it is worth the money for me yet. I have over 350 SD DVDs so on all but my most favored DVDs I likely will not double format dip to BD. I surprisingly have double format dipped about 15+ movies with another 10-20 more out of the 350+ on SD DVD, but in all honesty, if I had to do it all over again, I would probably only have bought about 200 SD DVDs with Netflix now.

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post #100 of 1830 Old 08-24-2008, 06:29 PM
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I am really intrigue by this player and what it may be capable of doing for my 1700+ DVD collection but alas I need to have a player that can also do SACDs and DVD-As and unfortunately the Tosh is unable. Due to my limited number of HDMI connections (4 only) I cannot simply just add this player to my theater without it replacing the Oppo... which does do SACD and DVD-A. The $150 is chump change to me and if it will improve the 'look' of my DVDs compared to my Oppo I definitely would purchase but its got to play my music collection as well... and that's my problem.

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post #101 of 1830 Old 08-24-2008, 06:31 PM
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I've been playing with the XDE500 for a few days. I'm not a "big gun" home theater enthusiast by any means, so I figure this thread can use an opinion from someone with lower end equipment.

I use a Sammy 720p 32" A450 LCD and a Sony NS700H. Since I can't afford an ISF calibrator, I use a variant of clicq's popular calibration settings (found under "LCD Flat Panel Displays->Official LNXXA550 Calibration/Settings Thread->post#995").

The XDE500 is a mixed bag. Improvement is very dependent on the DVD you're playing. A great DVD transfer like Stranger than Fiction is definitely enhanced with Sharp on. However, if your DVD source material has any EE halos, expect the XDE modes to accentuate those artifacts as well. This is very noticeable on superimposed titles and text such as on Gattaca and Fearless Director's Cut.

I would say the $150 XDE500 does look slightly better than my $60 NS700 overall when Sharp/Color is on. The improvement though is not worth the extra $90 especially with the lack of disc resume, so I returned mine.

My hope is that Toshiba releases a true SRT DVD player in the near future, but all that is unfortunately speculation.
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post #102 of 1830 Old 08-24-2008, 06:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by massives View Post

...My hope is that Toshiba releases a true SRT DVD player in the near future, but all that is unfortunately speculation.

Well, expect to pay a far greater premium than a mere $90. BTW, thanks for the honest review...

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post #103 of 1830 Old 08-24-2008, 07:26 PM
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Originally Posted by monomer View Post

Well, expect to pay a far greater premium than a mere $90. BTW, thanks for the honest review...

i'm willing to pay for it if the improvement is huge.
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post #104 of 1830 Old 08-24-2008, 07:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Goatse View Post

turn up the sharpness with noise reduction. On my tv I can replicate the XDE by upping the detail enhancer on the 60A2000 and pumping up the NR .

I highly doubt the TV Sharpness and noise reduction can achieve this. For Noise reduction I can see how there may be similarities since since the image is being processed to get to a result. But TVS usually don't use any algorithms when you manually adjust color, sharpness or contrast. What the Toshiba is doing is similar to what WinDVD 9 or FFDShow or Nvidia PureVideo HD does when it enhances and upconverts DVD by working on the color, edges and contrast. If someone wants to see how to manually set these to see how they impact picture quality just get ffdshow and try it out!

What we are seeing is a new generation of hardware and software that can improve video and audio quality. I am guessing the next step will be for Toshiba to use this algorithm with a better processor like their cell (or whatever they are branding it as).

There is no way that standard TV colors contrast and sharpness controls can achieve this. This is nothing new. Perhaps new in a set top box, but not in the PC world.
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post #105 of 1830 Old 08-24-2008, 07:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by massives View Post

I've been playing with the XDE500 for a few days. I'm not a "big gun" home theater enthusiast by any means, so I figure this thread can use an opinion from someone with lower end equipment.

I use a Sammy 720p 32" A450 LCD and a Sony NS700H. Since I can't afford an ISF calibrator, I use a variant of clicq's popular calibration settings (found under "LCD Flat Panel Displays->Official LNXXA550 Calibration/Settings Thread->post#995").

The XDE500 is a mixed bag. Improvement is very dependent on the DVD you're playing. A great DVD transfer like Stranger than Fiction is definitely enhanced with Sharp on. However, if your DVD source material has any EE halos, expect the XDE modes to accentuate those artifacts as well. This is very noticeable on superimposed titles and text such as on Gattaca and Fearless Director's Cut.

I would say the $150 XDE500 does look slightly better than my $60 NS700 overall when Sharp/Color is on. The improvement though is not worth the extra $90 especially with the lack of disc resume, so I returned mine.

My hope is that Toshiba releases a true SRT DVD player in the near future, but all that is unfortunately speculation.

Same experience here with my 37A450 and NS700. I also returned mine. I would have kept it if the user interface was any good, but it did not come close to the Sony. Maybe it just needs a much bigger screen size to notice any improvements.
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post #106 of 1830 Old 08-24-2008, 09:02 PM
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Originally Posted by keyoctave View Post

Same experience here with my 37A450 and NS700. I also returned mine. I would have kept it if the user interface was any good, but it did not come close to the Sony. Maybe it just needs a much bigger screen size to notice any improvements.

Actually I would expect a bigger screen would only make the flaws of EE, DNR, color boosting, contrast boosting, etc all the more apparent. I suspect the XDE would give the best experience on a smaller screen and sitting not too close to the screen.
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post #107 of 1830 Old 08-25-2008, 04:56 AM
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After a weekend of movies with this player, I am having a hard time returning it even though I also really like my Oppo for SACD/DVDA. I spent time in my theater last night watching movies and doing an improvised shoot out with other players I own. I'll agree with a previous poster that the XDE is a mixed bag. The performance is not in doubt in my (and members of my family's) eyes and that is really what matters. However, here is the caveat: there are some fairly strict limitations to get the picture that blows you away. In my theater with my 100" screen, the only watchable mode is forced 1080/24. When set to AUTO, I get 720P on my Panny (native rate) and the sharpness makes the XDE look nowhere near as good. In fact, I can see at this setting why some would compare this to setting sharpness higher on the TV. On my 50" Pannasonic plasma, it looks great at 720 and 1080/24, maybe it is the smaller size.

I can say this, I spent about three hours comparing the following and I can rank them accordingly. Of course, YMMV.

A BD played on the PS3 or Sammy 5000 or an HD DVD on the A35 is easily a 10 out of 10 with a properly mastered newer movie. On older films or poor mastering, it can slip anywhere from an 8.5 to a 9.5.

An SD DVD played on the PS3 garners a 5-6

SD on the Samy with Reon 6-7

SD on the Oppo with DCDi (981) 6-7.5

SD on the Toshiba at 720P 5.5-6.5 (on my PJ, not applicable on my plasma where it gets higher scores)

SD on the Toshiba at 1080/24 7.5-8.0

The bottom line on the Tosh from me is that the sharpness at 1080/24 seems to add perceived detail even though that is not really possible- it is a very cool mind trick to add it without any adverse affects. Also, the color setting adds a vibrancy to the picture that rivals the color pallette of HD media but doesn't "blow out the colors like turning the color setting higher on a TV. When the others are compared directly with the Toshiba by switching back and forth, they look blurry by comparison and flat and washed out in the color department-and that was easily recognized by everyone who took part in my little experiment over the weekend.

Perfect, no- but worth at least its asking price and a steal at the $100-129 point it most likely will head to soon.

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post #108 of 1830 Old 08-25-2008, 05:32 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by av.pallino View Post

There is no way that standard TV colors contrast and sharpness controls can achieve this. This is nothing new. Perhaps new in a set top box, but not in the PC world.

well your completely wrong because I tried it on the oppo to replicate it. I don't know what the Sony tv does but "detail enhancer" does the same thing, also to get that boosted color, turn on "live color" and to flatten the picture out I use DNR.
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post #109 of 1830 Old 08-25-2008, 06:14 AM
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All these controls are designed to fool the mind into believing the video is enhanced. That is where the 'science' comes in. After all, a 3D movie isn't really 3D!

Also, the way this player applies the enhancements are very similar to the PC based algorithms such as All2HD that is based off of Nivia PureVideo HD. I can't post a link with my PDA, but you can check out exactly how the sharpness works with images with and without processing directly on top of each other. Some of the WinDVD9 reviews should also have some of those comparisons.

I have an Oppo 970 and I know what it can do in terms of noise reduction and it is not the same as what happens with the latest software products. I checked out the Toshiba last night for an hour or so and I was looking mainly for how the picture was being enhanced. I could easily tell that it was different from the other upconverters since it treated different parts of the picture differently. The sharpness control was identical to what I see in All2HD on WinDVD9.

Whether someone likes the end result or not, is another matter. Whether the Oppo is better or not is also another matter. But the enhancements and controls here work differently and I am guessing with better hardware we will see more and more of this type of implementations. However, I was a little disappointed with the usability. It was too complex for a novice (i.e. which 2 modes to select and different movies benefit from different combinations etc, an Optimized mode - ala QDEO in LG BH 200 would have been nice for the typical end user) and too basic for an advanced user in my opinion. Perhaps they are targeting the middle of the road folks. More likely, Toshiba wanted to play it safe and as a first implementation deliberately kept it sparce.

FWIW, this type of control may be good as a default control in a TV and not just a DVD player.
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post #110 of 1830 Old 08-25-2008, 06:15 AM
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larrimore - great comments and analysis. My wife and I watched the movie Conspiracy Theory (she put it the Netflix queue) and aside from the fact that it was a lousy movie, the transfer was excellent. Its an older DVD, no menus or other foolishness eating up space, therefore all space can be devoted to the film. Some of the scenes were as close to HD quality as I've ever seen from a non-HD/BD player. I also viewed some scenes from Back to the Future III, which was a dissapointing transfer, but still managed to look OK, and certainly better with the sharp mode on than off.

On my setup (RS1x onto SeymourAV CenterStage 104" screen) I found the settings we made at Ron's were correct - Sharp mode enabled and PJ sharpness down to -2. I also ended up turning a very slight amount of DNR on (2 out for 30) which seemed to clean up the picture nicely and didn't noticeably soften the picture. Now I wonder if this noise was due to the poor quality transfer of BTTF III which I was using while tweaking around. The color mode was very effective and the scenes at the end of that movie looked great - Clara's bright purple dress and the colored smoke from the smokestack - without affecting fleshtones. I used Avia to due a rough color cal (using the blue view strip) and wouldn't you know it when I turned the color mode on the blue bars went to perfect levels. The RS1 has over saturated colors so without gamut corrections the remedy is to turn the color control down to avoid that sunburned look and artificial colors. For me about -12 works best at retaining enough color while mitigating flesh tones. But this is obviously far from perfect using the flashing blue bars thru the blue filter. When I enabled color mode, the saturation bars went to near perfect levels while maintaining the proper flesh and other neutral tones so I found it to be pretty effective.

I agree the menus are very limited, but in all honesty I hardly ever use them on my existing player. I also don't have any DVD-A or SACDs, so that's not a concern. All I need is a bare-bones video player with good up-conversion and 24fps output and the XDE500 is that. I am happy to report that the player does output 96kHz digital audio from DAD discs. Also, I'm using it no problem on port 1 of the monoprice 5x1 HDMI switcher.

I did have one or two small problems, though. First, while viewing scenes from BTTF III, I somehow got the player stuck in a mode where the picture got shifted to the left about 15%, and the missing part mysteriously appeared on the right hand side separated by a thin vertical black strip. Stopping and re-starting, going to menus, even the stop mode splash screen all continued to display this problem, I had to power cycle to clear it. Anyone ever seen this on this or another Zoran based player? Also, I noticed during several scene cuts, probably near chapter points, that the appearance of some aliasing was obvious for a second or two, probably due to bad flags and it dropping back to video mode (which is a bit disastrous when in 24fps mode, its also creates a very juddery motion.) Both of these discs are on the older side. I found it mildly annoying, but I can probably live with it. For me the benefits outweigh the small issues, certainly at this price point.
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post #111 of 1830 Old 08-25-2008, 07:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ack_bk View Post

Actually I would expect a bigger screen would only make the flaws of EE, DNR, color boosting, contrast boosting, etc all the more apparent. I suspect the XDE would give the best experience on a smaller screen and sitting not too close to the screen.

I would say the differences would be more noticeable on a bigger screen. As the screen goes smaller the less noticeable any post processing gets, as long as the content is decent and free from major problems (i.e. most DVD movie releases would fit the bill of content without major problems) - based on my experience.

Also, the overall quality is going to depend on the quality of the source + the decoder (player) + display. The picture is going to be limited by your weakest link in the chain. Products like the Toshiba operate on the source, they have no control on what the display does with the decoded content
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post #112 of 1830 Old 08-25-2008, 08:00 AM
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Has anyone done a comparison of XDE vs upconversion on the Sony S350 BD player? With the rumored $100 price drop on the S350 that puts a very good BD player only $150 more than the XDE. Maybe Sony is just responding to Toshiba's continued attempts to breath life into SD DVD but I don't know why one would keep investing in stand alone SD players unless they held a significant performance advantage over a BD players SD performance.

I've tried a number of SD upconverters (and considered this one) only to return them all thinking that I'd rather have invested that money in BD - effectively reducing its cost to me.
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post #113 of 1830 Old 08-25-2008, 08:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eganov View Post

Has anyone done a comparison of XDE vs upconversion on the Sony S350 BD player? With the rumored $100 price drop on the S350 that puts a very good BD player only $150 more than the XDE. Maybe Sony is just responding to Toshiba's continued attempts to breath life into SD DVD but I don't know why one would keep investing in stand alone SD players unless they held a significant performance advantage over a BD players SD performance.

I've tried a number of SD upconverters (and considered this one) only to return them all thinking that I'd rather have invested that money in BD - effectively reducing its cost to me.

From what I saw, the Sony 350 is a very poor upscaler. You are much better off with the PS3. The Sony and the Panasonic Blu Ray players are some of the worst DVD upscalers in the market. The Pioneer with the QDEO has the potential to be at least as good as the LG BH 200 (which in my opinion is for now the best DVD upscaler + Blu Ray combo player).

Having said that. At $299 I would rather have a Blu Ray player with a poor DVD upscaler v. just an excellent DVD player in terms of value. But that is just my perspective. Even the best DVD upscalers today can't match true HD and the title catalogs are improving on Blu Ray. There is going to have to be a huge jump in technology for DVD post processing to be able to compete with Blu Ray.

One idea I have is, since the studios are so loathe to allow us to copy a Blu Ray title, how about allow people to create a DVD version for those who want to copy.
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post #114 of 1830 Old 08-25-2008, 08:51 AM
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I have read a couple of comments that this player does not have a resume function and I am a little confused. Is the resume feature when you stop the player "pressing stop button" and then without powering off later pressing the play button and the movie will resume at the same spot where you pressed the stop button? My player has this type of resume function. Can someone who is saying it does not have the resume feature please explain what you are referring too? Just curious if there is some other type of resume feature out there.
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post #115 of 1830 Old 08-25-2008, 09:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by av.pallino View Post

One idea I have is, since the studios are so loathe to allow us to copy a Blu Ray title, how about allow people to create a DVD version for those who want to copy.

That would lead to a very good copy!

Another idea is to let us trade in our store bought DVD's for the same BD title at a discount price. How many times must we purchase the same movie because of different formats. I have been through Beta, VHS, S-VHS, Laser Disc, DVD and now they want me to buy Blu Ray? That's why I hope players like this can succeed (even though it didn't work for me).
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post #116 of 1830 Old 08-25-2008, 09:35 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by keyoctave View Post

That would lead to a very good copy!

Another idea is to let us trade in our store bought DVD's for the same BD title at a discount price. How many times must we purchase the same movie because of different formats. I have been through Beta, VHS, S-VHS, Laser Disc, DVD and now they want me to buy Blu Ray? That's why I hope players like this can succeed (even though it didn't work for me).

Using modern encoders and codecs, going from 25 or 50 GB Blu Ray to 9GB DVD would do the job and you'd preserve the premium of Blu Ray and it's DRM restrictions while offering the flexibility of DVD.
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post #117 of 1830 Old 08-25-2008, 09:55 AM
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Here's something that may mean there may be more going on under the hood of the XDE-500 than traditional upscaling.

Has anybody checked out the bit rate meter in the XDE? If you press display on the remote twice the bit rate meter shows up. When I compared it to another upscaling DVD player the results were interesting.

In short the Philips 5960 when playing Gladiator (EE) shows bit rates typically in the low to mid single digit range. It will peak close to 10 mbps but that is about it. With the XDE the bit rate meter shows mbps peaks in the mid to high teens. Readings in the peak range of 14 mbps - 18 mbps show up depending on the scene.

Has anybody else checked this out?
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post #118 of 1830 Old 08-25-2008, 09:58 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nextoo View Post

Here's something that may mean there may be more going on under the hood of the XDE-500 than traditional upscaling.

Has anybody checked out the bit rate meter in the XDE? If you press display on the remote twice the bit rate meter shows up. When I compared it to another upscaling DVD player the results were interesting.

In short the Philips 5960 when playing Gladiator (EE) shows bit rates typically in the low to mid single digit range. It will peak close to 10 mbps but that is about it. With the XDE the bit rate meter shows mbps peaks in the mid to high teens. Readings in the peak range of 14 mbps - 18 mbps show up depending on the scene.

Has anybody else checked this out?

wouldn't put much faith in to these "bit rate" meters, especially ones that read higher then spec. Only one that seems accurate is the ps3.
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post #119 of 1830 Old 08-25-2008, 10:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nextoo View Post

Here's something that may mean there may be more going on under the hood of the XDE-500 than traditional upscaling.

Has anybody checked out the bit rate meter in the XDE? If you press display on the remote twice the bit rate meter shows up. When I compared it to another upscaling DVD player the results were interesting.

In short the Philips 5960 when playing Gladiator (EE) shows bit rates typically in the low to mid single digit range. It will peak close to 10 mbps but that is about it. With the XDE the bit rate meter shows mbps peaks in the mid to high teens. Readings in the peak range of 14 mbps - 18 mbps show up depending on the scene.

Has anybody else checked this out?

I wonder if this has anything to do with the scaling filter. According to Amazons product description when the picture mode is set to off scaling is set to Mid and when any of the other three picture modes are activated (sharp, color or contrast) the scaling is set at high. I havent really paid attention to the bit rate but now I am gonna play around with it when I get home
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post #120 of 1830 Old 08-25-2008, 10:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by keyoctave View Post

That would lead to a very good copy!

Another idea is to let us trade in our store bought DVD's for the same BD title at a discount price. How many times must we purchase the same movie because of different formats. I have been through Beta, VHS, S-VHS, Laser Disc, DVD and now they want me to buy Blu Ray? That's why I hope players like this can succeed (even though it didn't work for me).


Retailers and the studios would never let this happen...never in a million years.
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