XD-E500 Owners thread. - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 1830 Old 08-21-2008, 06:15 PM - Thread Starter
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Heres a few comparison shots some of you guys asked for. Sorry but my digicam isn't that great.

Oppo 980h



Sharpness off XDE



Sharpness



Color + sharpness



Contrast

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post #2 of 1830 Old 08-21-2008, 06:28 PM
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The XD looks better than the oppo when are the xd's rolling out?

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post #3 of 1830 Old 08-21-2008, 06:50 PM
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The real question is when we'll we get comparisons between this and the OPPO 983!
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post #4 of 1830 Old 08-21-2008, 06:52 PM - Thread Starter
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heres few more

Oppo



XDE all off



Sharpness



Color



Contrast




HD DVD

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post #5 of 1830 Old 08-21-2008, 07:11 PM
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Thanks for the comparisons and I read that you tried Jurassic Park on it and could you post a comparison with an outdoor shot from it?
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post #6 of 1830 Old 08-21-2008, 07:25 PM - Thread Starter
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Okay I just watched bunch of scenes back to back with the oppo. I can't describe it but I don't like the XDE, its adding too much sharpness and making the edges pixalated when there is motion. Oppo looks more like a film thats smoother but not any less detailed than the XDE.

XDE off



Sharpness



Color



Contrast

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post #7 of 1830 Old 08-21-2008, 08:11 PM
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Goatse, check out the XDE example of the lose hair. It's dashed in all the XDE examples instead of continuous in the Oppo and HD DVD examples. Jaggies?? Anyway, it looks otherwise impressive IMO. But it would be nice to see other examples... more difficult ones. Also to see how it does in the deinterlacing patterns.

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post #8 of 1830 Old 08-21-2008, 08:34 PM
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In terms of features how does the Toshiba XD-E500 compare to the Oppo DV-980H?
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post #9 of 1830 Old 08-21-2008, 08:43 PM
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I'm not really familiar with the new Toshiba...how does it compare to the HD-XA2? In other words...does it have the HQV Reon VX chip?

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post #10 of 1830 Old 08-21-2008, 09:01 PM
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A quick review.

Have a XA2, several A2's, A3's and a PS3. Viewed on a 768 and 1080P 50" plasma. 9 feet viewing distance.

Looked at the Indy boxed series and Gladiator.

* Like the XA2, upscaled content does not look like HD. Nobody with any semi-critical eye is going to think that this is real HD. This goes for content upscaled on the XA2 and the E500. The claim that the E500 makes 480i content look like HD is false.

* The E500 does make 480 content look sharper without the classic sharpening artifacts one associates with sharpening. The effect is similar to applying a mild sharpening filter to a TIFF file. The color setting also does not "blow out" the curves to any noticable extent. The effect is mild-moderate.

* I like the look of 480 content playback on the E500 over the XA2. I don't see edge artifacts with sharpening and I find the E500 PQ to be sharper and to my eye more pleasing.

My feeling is that at a lower price point this will be a popular machine among standard DVD users. It does not perform magic. I was hoping for a pseudo-HD effect similar to what is produced when a 1080P signal is downscaled on a ED Plasma panel. It does NOT meet this standard.

I'll probably hang on to it for 480i disks that I own and are not available on BD. The E500 is not a BD killer. It is more like a Oppo assaulter

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post #11 of 1830 Old 08-21-2008, 10:18 PM
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I looked at a few older tranfers...The Man with the X Ray Eyes ( a classic B movie) and The Blue Max.

* The color mode DOES do some funky things on these disks and does not yield a realsitic result. Sharpness and Contrast appears to produce the most natural color/BL output.

* The more I watch the E500 the softer and less pleasing 480 content on the XA2 and PS3 look. Your brain gets use to the extra detail (pseudo-detail?) and the other machines PQ look a tad mushy. The X-Ray eyes DVD is really mediocre in the PQ department. Soft and fairly noisy. The E500 recovers the PQ to a level that I could at least watch it. I immediatly noticed details that I had not in previous viewings.

The E500 will be a keeper. If only to watch more obscure titles not likely to hit BD anytime soon.

One note...I cannot get 4:3 content to display properly. No matter how much twiddling in the menu...it stretches 4:3. Perhaps someone else has a solution.

Another note...The enhancements are only available in 1080. No extended details with 720P.

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post #12 of 1830 Old 08-21-2008, 10:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Star56 View Post

Another note...The enhancements are only available in 1080. No extended details with 720P.

Thanks for noting that. I guess it's useless to have an XDE player if you have a 720p display.
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post #13 of 1830 Old 08-21-2008, 10:56 PM
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I was planning to get the XD-E500 to do a comparison with my Oppo DV-983H, but I decided not to do it, because I feel it might be a waste of time.
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post #14 of 1830 Old 08-21-2008, 11:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Main Event View Post

Thanks for noting that. I guess it's useless to have an XDE player if you have a 720p display.

No this is not true. One of my panels is a 768P. Feeding it 1080P24 with sharpness+contrast results in better PQ than my other options. Your display will scale it to 720P.

42" in the dining room.
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post #15 of 1830 Old 08-22-2008, 02:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Star56 View Post

Another note...The enhancements are only available in 1080. No extended details with 720P.

Blah, so much for that. Plus I assume no PAL or multi-region ability, which is absolutely vital to me. My 980H is safe.

Also, why do I see stair-stepping artifacts on the XDE shots?
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post #16 of 1830 Old 08-22-2008, 02:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Damnationdoormat View Post

Blah, so much for that. Plus I assume no PAL or multi-region ability, which is absolutely vital to me. My 980H is safe.

Also, why do I see stair-stepping artifacts on the XDE shots?

The manual states that the Pic modes will not work with 720P and 480P. At first this appeared to be correct...set the mode to Sharp and 480p/720p will not illuminate...only 1080i/1080p.

BUT I discovered a way around it. If you set the resolution mode to Auto...and connect it to a 768 panel....it outputs 720p AND the pic modes work. I have found that 720P is superior to everything else for 768
(not intuitive..downscaling from 1080i can produce good results with other machines)

I do see the stairstepping in those photos...however in actual viewing from 8-9 feet I can't see them...despite peering closely and looking for them. I didn't pause the video...just playing back...I can't see anything.

I just watched a bit of a few more DVD's ( Lolita, Gattica) and the E500 PQ is better than the upscaling from the XA2 ( at least in my subjective view on my panels and my distance).

My wife has slowly become a PQ snob after years of watching HD. She walked in when I was demoing Gladiator. She spontaneously said
" boy that looks good". There is no question that the E500 does some nice things to many scenes. It just is NOT HD PQ.

When the price gets to the $79-99 range more folks may jump on these.

One other poster said the E500 produced a sharper Pic than the Oppo. Of course there is more to PQ than sharpness.

42" in the dining room.
50" in the bedroom
80" in the living room

65" in the family room
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"There is another system"

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post #17 of 1830 Old 08-22-2008, 03:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Star56 View Post

I just watched a bit of a few more DVD's ( Lolita, Gattica) and the E500 PQ is better than the upscaling from the XA2 ( at least in my subjective view on my panels and my distance).

Lolita is non-anamorphic letterbox. With no in-player zoom mode like the Oppo, how did you manage to display it properly?

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post #18 of 1830 Old 08-22-2008, 04:51 AM
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I had a top end Denon Player that got struck by lightning and the video section needs to be repaired. I went to CC and bought a Onkyo DV-SP405(b). I read the posts about Toshiba's new player so I returned the Onkyo and picked up the XDE, Twice. I have a Samsung 720p DLP from 2004. During set up on the HDMI resolution I accidently hit the 24/1080p and my screen of course went black with "No Signal" bar across. I took it back and got another one.

I only got to watch a little of a film "Alone in the Dark" a B movie with a miss cast Tara Reid as a scientist and Stephen Dourif miss cast as a bureacrat Jack Bauer type. This unit does not compete with Silicon Optix/Silicon Image/ABT in my experience but does not cost anywhere as near. I haven't seen the Oppo's but I think they must still be the Batman in Gotham City.

I feel Toshiba has some new technology and this is just the watered down Kool Aid for now.
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post #19 of 1830 Old 08-22-2008, 04:52 AM
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So am I the only one who see the Oppo spanking the Toshiba XDE? Look at the aliasing on the stray strands of her hair with the Toshiba XDE that is not in the Oppo.

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post #20 of 1830 Old 08-22-2008, 05:08 AM
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Originally Posted by Stereodude View Post

So am I the only one who see the Oppo spanking the Toshiba XDE? Look at the aliasing on the stray strands of her hair with the Toshiba XDE that is not in the Oppo.


I would have to concur (at least from the screenshots).

I mean, even though we are talking about a strand of hair (in this occasion), where else (and how often) will this show up? You never know.

Is Toshiba expecting people to pay 2x money to add problems to their picture, instead of remove them with their "smart" filters?
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post #21 of 1830 Old 08-22-2008, 05:10 AM - Thread Starter
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Well I got a good 5 hours back to back with the Oppo 980H. XDE is sharper at first but after having a good comparison it has a unnaturally sharp picture I didn't like. I can mimic the XDE with the Oppo by turning on the detail enhancer, noise reduction to full and color enhancing on my 60A2000. The Oppo is softer but looks more film like to my eyes. Because the edges are sharper on the XDE, I can see why some would find this player more pleasing. XDE is overtly sharp and at times especially at motion, seems like sharpness turns on and off making the picture soft and sharp every few seconds.
I really wanted to believe that Toshiba came up with something to really improve my DVD collection. This player is not it, "As seen on TV" gimic at best. Mines going back, with no resume, HDMI handshake issues and choking on home made dvds this is useless for me.
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post #22 of 1830 Old 08-22-2008, 05:18 AM
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Brought my new XDE over to a fellow AVSer's theater last night to do some comparisons against his XA2 using his RS1 on a 120" screen. At this size, any issues should be obvious. We mainly used WOTW and POTC. We didn't perform and calibration and all noise filtering options on all equipment was disabled.

Overall, we were definitely impressed! The XDE does significantly sharpen up the picture without adding any serious or distracting artifacts. It was very natural looking for the most part and did add both perceived detail and depth to the picture. I would liken the sharpening to a very well done unsharp mask in photoshop, when done properly it only sharpens areas that need it resulting in only enhancement to the picture. Compared directly against the XA2, we found that the XDE sharpened somewhere between the "1" and "2" settings, where "2" did tend to look slightly over-sharpened while "1" was much more natural. However, we were able to mitigate this and essentially reduce the XDE to being equivalent with the XA2 "1" setting by turning down the sharpness control a few clicks on the RS1. This really cleaned up some of the noise and slight over enhancement to make the picture as watchable as the XA2. After having made these tweaks, the two players were indistinguishable from one another at this large size. Considering this player costs as little as it does, the performance was simply amazing. HD? No. But pretty darn close and makes regular DVD immensely watchable at large screen sizes. I wonder if those posters who commented it looked over-sharpened might need to similarly reduce their sharpness settings on their displays as we did to achieve a more natural picture.

There was judder evident when the 24fps setting wasn't in use in both 1080p and 1080i modes. We were unable to tell what mode "Auto" used since his version of the RS1 doesn't report the vertical refresh rate (my RS1x does.) But based on a few wide panning shots we watched it didn't appear to be the 24fps option. When enabled, though, the magic of 24fps was clearly evident as there was no judder in any panning shots or during quick action shots - all motion was smooth and extremely fluid. Again, at large screen sizes like this judder is much more of an issue. So the 24fps mode is very effective and worked without any hiccups in the parts we watched from both these two discs.

We did briefly play around with the "color" and "contrast" settings, but mostly just left it on the "sharp" setting. The contrast setting does appear to change the gamma to a lower value which brings out more shadow detail in dark scenes, and the color option definitely accentuates the greens and blues without messing with flesh tones and keeping the appearance of most things fairly normal. For example, in Pirates, the scene with the green apple in the shots on the Black Pearl, the apple would appear almost neon when the color mode was turned on. Again, we hadn't performed any calibration at all. It would probably take some trial and error to see if calibrating it in this color mode would reduce the tendency to over saturate some of the colors to the point where they had more pop without looking artificial. I'll have to play around with this a bit more over the weekend once I get it hooked up to my setup (RS1x with a slightly smaller 104" screen.)

The settings are fairly limited as others have commented. Also, we found the tray design completely ridiculous - there are no cutouts on the side for you to be able to grab the disc out of the player, you have to either push it up from the bottom of use your finger in the hole to pull it out.

Considering how inexpensive this player is, that if offers a true 24fps mode, and that the sharpening can be made equivalent to the XA2 whose initial cost was almost 5x what this player is, I'd say it makes a very good choice for anyone looking for an excellent upconverting player with 24fps capability without breaking the bank. Definitely recommended. I'll be keeping mine!

p.s. I just saw the comments regarding the aliasing in the hair strands above, and while I do agree they're visible in these still shots, we didn't notice anything like this to be evident or obvious during our viewing session. You can see this is visible in all the XDE shots, even the one with all enhancements disabled, and so its clearly an artifact of the budget deinterlacer in the Toshiba and not a result of any of the image processing. For me, unless I can see it during motion video, its really not a big enough issue to make me give up the very good upconversion and 24fps capability.
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post #23 of 1830 Old 08-22-2008, 06:22 AM
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Doug G. Thanks for a detailed and honest level-headed review. Based on your review I've decided to pick one up and give it try. If DVD does well on my 92" (diagonal) screen I'll keep it. The fact that you think the XDE looks as good as your much more expensive XA2 is encouraging. In the shots shown above I was discouraged about the XDE's performance against the Oppo until I saw the HD DVD shot. The HD DVD shot didn't look much better than the DVD shots so I now realize these shots are virtually meaningless. I am well aware of the differences between HD DVD and upscaled DVD!
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post #24 of 1830 Old 08-22-2008, 06:47 AM
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Sounds to me that if you already have an Oppo or Silicon Optix player then it is most likely not worth it to get an XDE. But if you are in the market for a good upscaling player the XDE should be on your list. If this thing were $79-99 I would most likely grab one, but I am slowly moving away from DVD to HD content and I would have to retire my HD DVD player to make room for this player in my HT setup. So I will pass. But I don't think I could stop myself if this thing is $79-99 in Q4...
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post #25 of 1830 Old 08-22-2008, 06:56 AM
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Thanks for the reviews Doug & Goatse.

Has anyone tried any video based material? Or, the HQV disc to see how it does with bad edits and jaggies?
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post #26 of 1830 Old 08-22-2008, 07:22 AM
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So is the XA2 the holy grail of upscaling? I use the A35 and am pleased. However, it appears the XDE will be better? The users complaining about the XDE sharpening and DNR, let's get real. It's 480 content...what else are they going to do. It is peusoHD at best. However, if it is more pleasing to the eye, I'm in!
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post #27 of 1830 Old 08-22-2008, 07:35 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rach View Post

So is the XA2 the holy grail of upscaling? I use the A35 and am pleased. However, it appears the XDE will be better? The users complaining about the XDE sharpening and DNR, let's get real. It's 480 content...what else are they going to do. It is peusoHD at best. However, if it is more pleasing to the eye, I'm in!

Well so is the store display torch mode on TV's, XDE is like a butterface. Good from far but far from good. However I do realize that some people do like DNR and Edgy picture so should try it out than to take others opinions.
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post #28 of 1830 Old 08-22-2008, 07:40 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Goatse View Post

Well so is the store display torch mode on TV's, XDE is like a butterface. Good from far but far from good. However I do realize that some people do like DNR and Edgy picture so its good try it out than take others opinions.


I like that quote!

That probably is the best you will do with 480. If BDs look like this, that is a different story altogether. Don't misunderstand. I want something that will make the DVD experience better. I'm not expecting BD quality. If Newline's BD releases especially Pan's L are the BD standard, we have a problem...but for 480 content I guess I'm not as picky. So Goatse, would you say it is better than the A35 or the third HDDVD series from Tosh?
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post #29 of 1830 Old 08-22-2008, 07:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rach View Post

I use the A35 and am pleased. However, it appears the XDE will be better? The users complaining about the XDE sharpening and DNR, let's get real. It's 480 content...what else are they going to do. It is peusoHD at best. However, if it is more pleasing to the eye, I'm in!

I replaced my A35 with the XDE (I still have an Xbox HD DVD drive) and I'm happy with the decision. For one thing, the time saved by no longer having to wait 20 seconds for a DVD to eject!

I watched a good part of SW Episode III last night and it really benefited from the contrast mode. LOTR’s outdoor scenes really benefited from the color mode. The next step in the evolution of the XDE line is for the player to calculate which mode is better for each frame and switch automatically.
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post #30 of 1830 Old 08-22-2008, 07:53 AM
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cdzie1,

Was it sharper than the A35? Did it appear to have more resolution? If so, by how much?
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