Progressive Scan Shootout # 3 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 04:00 PM - Thread Starter
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http://www.hometheaterhifi.com/volum...ut-1-2003.html

We have published shootout # 3. Before you look at the results, you need to read the guide. The guide explains the new look, testing, and reporting.

Shootouts 1 and 2 have also been ported over to the new look. We are still making sure it is all correct so if you see any errors, please let us know.

The guide is a work-in-progress. We will continue to work on it to make it easier for everyone to run the same tests that we do and to understand what a pass/fail is.
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post #2 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 04:08 PM
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WooHoo!!! Thanks for all of your hard work and especially for sharing your knowledge! MUCH APPRECIATED.

:)
Ken
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post #3 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 04:10 PM
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Excellent Shootout...Thank you so much....
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post #4 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 04:39 PM
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Yes, thank you! And it's great to see my little $200 PR82 on top with a score of 91. Amazing.

Aaron
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post #5 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 04:42 PM - Thread Starter
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We really wanted to post sooner, but getting it all working was a chore. That along with Thanksgiving and Christmas just got in the way.
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post #6 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 04:46 PM
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Plus all the skiing you had to do over the holidays.:)Whistler cause a lift ticket is $1.US.

Ron
"Your priorities will be different-its the weighting that counts!-only if its done by FET!"

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post #7 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 05:08 PM
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HI Stacey. Thanks a lot for the shootout 2! Any reason why the Denon 1600 was not included in #3?
FREAK!

4X SUPERBOWL CHAMPION PATRIOTS!
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post #8 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 05:10 PM
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I can't believe how good the RP-82 is compared to the more expensive players, and I agree that if they made the layer changes faster then this player would truly be amazing for its price.

Great review, thank you and everybody else involved in the shoot-out, this is great info.

Juan

My HT
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post #9 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 05:13 PM
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This test is a benchmark for similar testing.
Dont know why you didnt just go to CES and make a call by seeing/hearing them in all different rooms-tons of people do!

You have achieved immortality!(not easy.)
Any person who has said/believed/uttered the canard "you get what you paid for"deserves to be in prison with this report carved in stone over his/her head where they have to read it every day until the canard is toast!:)

Ron
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post #10 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 05:37 PM
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All I can say is "way to go Pioneer" :D

Can you believe the comments about the DV-45a? A "step backward"? Wow..... unbelievable... oh well.... :)

Peace....
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post #11 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 05:43 PM
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I would have loved to see the JVC XV-SA600 in the shootout as some have chosen it over the RP82 for various reasons.
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post #12 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 05:49 PM
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Great job guys!!

It's obvious you just radically raised the price on eBay pre-owned RP82's!

BTW #1, will that Denon 3800/9000 1/2 pixel Y/C delay show up in the component output .... or only when using Y/C output?

BTW #2, what does the untitled "DVD Player Results" column on the far right represent?

BTW #3, what is the significance of video bandwidth response beyond 6.75MHz - as shown on your curves? ;)

Phil
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post #13 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 05:51 PM - Thread Starter
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We did not have a 1600 to look at. I know where one is and if we get a chance, we will collect the data and publish it. It may be just like the RP82, but I don't really know for sure. (I hope it is because the 82 is nearly impossible to find.)

Philips 963 and Pan CP72 will be added to shootout 3 when we get them. Local AVS member has a CP72 and Philips is sending a 963.

While the 45A stepped back, the 47Ai stepped forward. 47Ai does improve upon 47A, which seems to be what Marantz and Onkyo are based on.

I was told at CES by another manufacturer (not Pioneer) that they have asked Mitsubishi to fix their MPEG decoder and they said ok. I hope this is true.
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post #14 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 05:56 PM - Thread Starter
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Phil

YC is also YPbPr. If the delay is in either Y-Pb or Y-Pr, we fail it. We count it as one test.

I am not sure what you mean by #2. If you mean the very far right where there is a lot of blue, that is response. ie how faster a player navigates chapters and menus and responds to your commands. If you don't see a title above, it might not have loaded yet.

Some little details.

If you mouse over test titles, the tooltip will include the weight of the test.

If you mouse over model, the tooltip will show full player name.
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post #15 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 05:58 PM
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After reading the 'shootout' it confirms to me that, after evaluating at least half of the players from the shootout, that technical measurements are not the benchmark from which to draw conclusions about which to purchase.

My in-home findings so far have shown me that the Panasonic RP82 (which is tops on your list) is at the bottom of mine for PQ and audio performance. The Marantz DV8300, Pioneer 47Ai and Sony 999ES are top on my list for PQ and audio, Sony being the leader so far.

I equate this to the tube vs solid state debate. When solid state output transistors were first introduced, they measured orders of magnatude better than tube based designs yet they sounded horrible. Some might argue that tube is still best. Most would agree that 'tube' sound is more pleasing and enjoyable. The same holds true for video performance. A given player may measure sub-par thus produce a 'soft' image that is perceived as film-like. This is more pleasing to me than a player that produces razor sharp images that reveal every defect and edge enhancement faults.

My point is, an in-home evaluation should be at the top of your priority and one should never base their purchase on technical measurements.
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post #16 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 06:02 PM
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Stacey,

The farthest right column on the summary table has no title - what do the colors and numbers in this column mean?

Please note my BTW #3 I added to my post above: "BTW #3, what is the significance of video bandwidth response beyond 6.75MHz - as shown on your curves?"

Phil
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post #17 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 06:06 PM - Thread Starter
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Phil, 6.75 is explained in the "guide to" under freq response. 480i goes to 6.75 MHz while 480p goes to 13.5 MHz. (All frequencies are doubled at 480p.)

Press F5 and it should grab the image for that far right column.
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post #18 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 06:20 PM
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Thanks for all the hard work and the great site update. It would be interesting to see Panasonic's reaction if the RP-82 earned the Best of 2002 DVD Player reward from Secrets of Home Theater and High Fidelity. ;)
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post #19 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 06:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by newmembertoday
My point is, an in-home evaluation should be at the top of your priority and one should never base their purchase on technical measurements.
Your point is a very good one and one that I certainly hope people consider when making DVD player purchase plans. Still, I really do value the Secrets reports, despite Pioneer players performing so poorly when analyzed technically.

One of the main reasons I like Pioneer "gear" is the reliability factor, something the Denon DVD-3800 owners suddenly became VERY interested in when they had problems with their DVD players. There are DVD players out there that produce a much better video picture than the Pioneer players, but to match the video performance of Pioneer players (even with the flaws) along with the reliability of Pioneer players is a little harder to do. Of course, I'm not saying that is IMPOSSIBLE, but generally speaking it's harder to do.

When you (any reader of this forum) have time, cruise through the DVD Software forum and check out the problem reports people have with various DVDs "misbehaving" in several different ways and tally up the makes/models of the players involved. Some players are older.. some are newer. Some brands get mentioned a LOT more than others, but Pioneer gets mentioned about the least frequently.

At this point in time, I'm just baffled that we have to go through SOO many different motions to make, what you would think would be, a "simple" purchase for a Home Theater. You find a DVD player that offers video and audio performance to suit your needs only to find it only has toslink audio outputs and no coax digital outputs when you have a coax digital input on your receiver. Or you find that the FF or REW buttons don't work on that DVD you're trying to watch. Or there is NO time display showing how much time has elapsed during DVD playback and how much time is remaining, both in the current chapter as well as for the title itself.

Why can't someone make a DVD player that offers ALL of the _basic_ features that "make sense", that offers optimal video and audio performance, and that is just as reliable as my 10 yr old VCR. I can pop in Monster's Inc and not worry about any playback problems, etc., like I can't do with my Pioneer DVL-919 and Pioneer PDV-LC10 which both "hang" at the layer change (along with several other DVD player makes/models and some PC DVD player software).

I use the Secrets reports as a way to learn more about the technology and to help "train" my eye as to kinds of things to look for so I can help make _better_ DVD player recommendations to family, friends, and my "e-friends" (those I interact with on sites like AVS Forum and DVD File :)).

Many Thanks to Mr Spears and Mr Munsil for yet ANOTHER job well done! :)

I think next year, we should organize an "anti-CUE" movement and "crash" CES and DEMAND this problem get fixed! :D

(Ok, so I'm only joking.... :))

Peace......
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post #20 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 06:27 PM
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Which tests are irrelevant if one were to get a player modded for SDI output? E.g., would a SDI modded RP62 be equal to a SDI modded RP82 as far as picture quality is concerned?
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post #21 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 06:41 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
I think next year, we should organize an "anti-CUE" movement and "crash" CES and DEMAND this problem get fixed!
Funny you mention that. Someone was going around with a list of players and asking each manufacturer if they had the chroma error or not. I did not meet this person but some of our other writers did.

I fell out of my chair laughing when I heard this. :)

Jin

If you watch subtitled movies, then the RP82 would be better. For SDI, look at layer change, response, image cropping (possible), sync subtitle to frames, and the 3 CUE tests. For SDI, RP82, CP72, XP50, Denon 1600, Yam CX1, and Yam 2300 would all look the same.

Reliability is difficult to test. I do have a scratched up DVD and some specific CDs that help with error correction but that is a lot of work. :) The music on the Philips disc with fingerprints is enough to drive you insane. When we used for B2, Kotches did all of that along with subjective listening. I thought he just had really bad taste in music until he told me that was the Philips disc. :)
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post #22 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 06:46 PM
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Jeff, The JVC XV-SA600 is very similar to the XV-S60 and the 723GD, both of which were covered in previous shootouts. If you view "all players", you'll see how they compare in our ratings.

It's worth noting (again) that we specifically designed our tests to isolate and magnify small differences between players that we think are important. If you look at the lowest rated players and the highest rated side-by-side playing a high quality, properly flagged movie (Superbit Fifth Element, anyone?), the differences will be subtle. This is the way most reviewers evaluate players, and we think it's a worthless technique.

What makes the most difference, in our opinion, is when the player screws up. How often does it screw up? Under what circumstances? What kind of material does it handle poorly? How bad does it look when it screws up?

We basically think that's it's reasonable to expect your player to perform well on all discs, not just many discs.

To respond specifically to the poster who thinks the 999ES is the best player he's looked at: the 999ES has a deinterlacer that goes into video mode at the drop of a hat on material that really looks lousy in video mode. We had no trouble reproducing this effect on a wide variety of discs, several of which we specifically called out in the text. If that's not an important video quality issue, I don't really know what is. It's issues like that that got the 999ES a bad score, not bench tests. We didn't even score frequency response - we only scored issues that we think have a significant effect on usability or picture quality.

Don
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post #23 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 06:55 PM
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Since the rp-82 is impossible to get now the test becomes very depressing.What about the jvc 500 which has received lots of reviewers praise?

Matt
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post #24 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 07:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by dmunsil

What makes the most difference, in our opinion, is when the player screws up. How often does it screw up? Under what circumstances? What kind of material does it handle poorly? How bad does it look when it screws up?

We basically think that's it's reasonable to expect your player to perform well on all discs, not just many discs.

This is why I soooo love you guys. :D

It's like I tell my friends-it's hard to make a good disc look bad, but it's not easy to make a bad disc look good. This is where a better dvd player shines.

Quote:
Originally posted by dmunsil

To respond specifically to the poster who thinks the 999ES is the best player he's looked at: the 999ES has a deinterlacer that goes into video mode at the drop of a hat on material that really looks lousy in video mode. We had no trouble reproducing this effect on a wide variety of discs, several of which we specifically called out in the text. If that's not an important video quality issue, I don't really know what is. It's issues like that that got the 999ES a bad score, not bench tests. We didn't even score frequency response - we only scored issues that we think have a significant effect on usability or picture quality.
One of my dealers was using the 999ES as a demo unit for a display I was looking at and my test material was playing so poorly that he thought my dvd was either "defective" or the 999 needed repair. I had him hook up a XP-50 and his jaw dropped to the floor. :)
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post #25 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 07:17 PM - Thread Starter
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If you have a digital display, the 999 will cause some problems for you. The voltage is so hot coming out that all whites will be crushed. This is a pretty big problem and the only way to really correct while getting the best image is with an external proc amp. There is one for around $200 from ADA. As soon as I can find a link, I am going to recommend it in the guide.
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post #26 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 07:41 PM
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Stacey said this:

Quote:
The music on the Philips disc with fingerprints is enough to drive you insane. When we used for B2, Kotches did all of that along with subjective listening. I thought he just had really bad taste in music until he told me that was the Philips disc.
It is possible for me to have really bad taste in music, aside from the required usage of the Philips test disc ;)

Great work from you, Don and Brian on the graphics too!

Regards,

Contributing Editor & Surround Music Reviewer Widescreen Review
Opinions are mine, not the publication I write for.
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post #27 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 08:22 PM
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Stacey, as I told you before privately (and this goes for Don and Brian too), "I'm in awer of yez!"

Steve Goff
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post #28 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 08:37 PM
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Thanks for another great roundup of DVD players. Hard to beleive that a $200 Panasonic does so well compared to the megabuck players. Sony should really be ashamed of themselves for selling the 999ES for $1200. So should Denon, the pixel cropping and chroma delay are in-excusable in a $1200 and worse still a $3500 player.
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post #29 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 09:11 PM
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My beloved Lexicon just released a universal DVD-Audio/DVD-Video/SACD player. Has a great cosmetic look, but I fear that it will have the chroma bug. It's based on a pioneer platform.

Does anyone know of a transport based on a Pioneer platform that does not have the bug?

Nick :cool:
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post #30 of 230 Old 01-14-2003, 09:33 PM
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Stacey or Don,

I lifted this quote from Kris Deering's Sept. 2002 review of the Denon 9000 and assume it applies to the 3800 also:

"Just a while after the first unit, Denon sent me a new one employing an updated MPEG decoder that did not have the chroma bug. Then they wrote a software fix for the MPEG decoder version in the 9000s already out there, which eliminates the bug. Therefore, anyone who has a 9000 with the bug can get the fix by contacting Denon. This is the route I would recommend, since the original player had absolutely no Y/C delay at all, while the new MPEG decoder introduced a full pixel (74ns) Y/C delay, which causes problems of its own."

So............. were the 3800 and 9000 you used for Shootout 3 of the earlier builds that took the firmware CUE fix or of the later builds that had the new decoder with the fix in the chip? Kris's comments above imply that those folks with "early" decoders who have also installed the firmware fix themselves have the best situation - no CUE and no Y/C delay ........ correct?

Phil
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