XP21n - Quality of internal doubler/scaler?! - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 04-11-2001, 07:17 AM - Thread Starter
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When I ordered an XP21n last week, the dealer had none in stock, so he sent me an LT155 as a loaner until the Sanyo arrived. Earlier in my search, I thought the NEC was the unit I would purchase, so I was looking forward to a head-to-head comparison with the Sanyo. I moved into a new apartment last Friday, and unfortunately, the best I was able do for a source was my computer's DVD drive and the S-video from the decoder card (it's a Creative Labs drive and card).

I toyed with the LT155 for three days and found that I didn’t want to return it. It has the feel of a very well designed piece of equipment—-from its physical build to its great menu system. Its size/perfomance ratio is outstanding; if portability was my driving factor, I don't think I'd look any further than the NEC. Image quality was very good--the Creative DVD and card was obviously doing something right. My video experience is limited, but I didn't see major evidence of doubling or scaling artifacts.

Yesterday, I received the XP21n and couldn't wait to fire it up. I was expecting a revelation. I got great brightness, great color, great contrast... but no revelation! The video quality of the NEC was better. What?! I immediately noticed artifacts that were probably related to de-interlacing. (That's my best guess; I noticed that scan lines became painfully obvious during fast-action.) When I paused the player, the picture was atrocious.

This leaves me with an important question: If I use a progressive source or external doubler, how much will the Sanyo's video quality improve? Since I haven't read a single mention of unsatisfactory video quality regarding the Sanyo, I'm assuming it's just my source. What are your thoughts?

I have another issue with the Sanyo: it has no saturation control. If only I could turn it down juuuust a little bit! All the more reason for an external video processor--right?

As an aside... I looked for the new pad for several months. I specifically wanted a big living room with high ceilings (acoustics) and hardwood floors (they look so nice). When the property managers I spoke with asked why I wanted a big living room, I told them I simply enjoy a large living space. I don’t need to tell anybody here the ACTUAL reason! (I can report that the new room sounds great and is able to support low bass without boominess.)

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post #2 of 6 Old 04-11-2001, 07:36 AM
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Do you have any access to a HD signal. This would show you more of what the projector itself can do (sans too much scaling).
The Snayo XP21 looks incredible. Based on Wiggels head-to-head I would say the processing is your weak link here, and upgrading it will make the Sanyo a more impressive performer.
With a Quadscna I thought the Sanyo was near impeccable. With my Quadscan in the shop the Sanyo is a bit ofa pain for NTSC with motion.

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post #3 of 6 Old 04-11-2001, 09:13 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks, I'm hoping the source is the problem. It's too bad the Sanyo under-performs the NEC by such a large margin when fed a 480i signal. If only I could combine the electronics of the NEC with the optical system of the Sanyo!

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post #4 of 6 Old 04-11-2001, 09:39 PM
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Frank,

Are you sure you got a XP21n?

The reason I ask is it does have a saturation control for any video source.

Also, set the unit to progressive on the deinterlacer.

I only tested the 18n, but the 21n and the 18n have the same manual and electronics just different LCD panels (as people have been told).

In progressive mode with a film based source (Super Speedway), the 18n looked better than the LT155 which was pretty good in its own right.

Please note that I was using the component input on the 18n.

Good luck,

-Mr. Wigggles.

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post #5 of 6 Old 04-11-2001, 09:40 PM
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Technology advances so rapidly anyway, that you probably will find having an outboard scaler more versatile and more easily upgradeable anyway.
The Sanyo is a reall winner- Iam sure you will be pleased.

DG
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post #6 of 6 Old 04-16-2001, 06:35 AM - Thread Starter
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Wigggles,
Sorry I haven't posted since Wednesday, I've been busy adjusting my projector's saturation. Somehow, when I was adjusting "Color," I didn't realize I was adjusting saturation. Don't ask, it was a very long night. The blue-filter process was new to me, but the projector is now very well calibrated.

The Sanyo really needs an outboard processor. It lacks the capabilities that the LT155 has in that department, for example. If I ignore the projector's scaling artifacts, the picture is great. It was a pleasure to watch even while listening to music; the colors were simply beautiful to behold. I literally gave myself a headache watching films all weekend! After all, once the lamp is blazing, you might as well leave it on for a few hours. (Why didn't anybody tell ever me to see Killing Zoe?!)

My question is--do I need a doubler, a scaler, or something that does both? If I buy an iSCAN, will that eliminate my problems, or is the scaling function of the projector still going to create nasty artifacts? Basically, I don't know if I'm seeing a doubling or a scaling problem.

Power failures:
I was worried what a power failure might do to the lamp. My experience has been with slide projectors. If you cut power to a slide projector, the lamp WILL break, guaranteed (granted, it's a different lamp). Anyhow, I had an outage on Saturday afternoon. For a couple tense minutes, I was waiting to hear the unmistakable 'pop' of the lamp. IT DIDN'T BREAK!! I remember reading a thread on this newsgroup about lamps/power outages, and the consensus was that the lamps won't break. Nonetheless, I was a little nervous.

For the minority who have never used a slide projector, I recommend that you buy one... if you enjoy taking photographs, that is. They're an order of magnitude cheaper than their digital counterparts, and the images are outstanding. No digital projector can touch that kind of performance. If you want to see what excellent detail, brightess, contrast, and saturation look like, you should see a slide projector.

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