Originally Posted by xtrips
I am the fresh owner of a new D2 and have some issues with video.
Your help is much needed.
Before I go and read the extended articles written here about video I would like to ask a question to the more demanding users around here.
I have been using my HTPC connected straight to my projector via an HDMI <> HDMI cable and a DVI > HDMI adaptor on the HTPC's end.
The picture was noiseless, crisp, natural. And I spent some hours getting this result with calibration material.
Now, thru the D2, the picture is grainy, noisy, not natural. And the motions on screen are sometimes jerky and have jagged edges.
Before I go into reading and experiencing I have a question of principle:
- If you are a video purist that owns a D2 (and of course there must be some) did you manage to get an equally good or better picture through the D2 and how?
Just a few precisions.
- HTPC: using nVidia 8600GTS display adaptor, 1920x1080p/24fps output
- D2: set for 1920x1080p/24fps input and output
- HTPC to D2 connection: DVI <> HDMI high-grade 1080p compliant cable
- Projector: Sharp XV-Z20000 using HDMI input and 24 fps compliant firmware
P.S: Just noticed on the docs that I should only input Interlaced signals. Didn't succeed to set my nVidia to 1920x1080i/24 though. Only 1920x1080i/60.
It is not correct that you should send only interlaced signals to the D2. The rule of thumb is to send to the D2 as close as you can get to the original source content. I.e., let the D2 process it from there. For normal movies off a Blu-Ray disc, for example, that would be 1080p/24 (whether or not you also happen to have a to /24 capable display). For standard DVDs and SDTV broadcasts (in the US) that would be 480i. For HDTV broadcasts that would be either 720p or 1080i depending on what the channel is currently broadcasting.
The trick to using the D2 properly is to FIRST calibrate your display to best reproduce the video generated by the D2 (as shown by the D2's internally generated test patterns). After doing that, then refine the video with each source device using the input setting adjustments in the D2. It is the D2's job to convert all inputs to that one "best" output to your display.
[CAUTION: There is a bug in the current D2 software such that the Color and Tint controls for the currently selected input source (Video Source Adjust / Picture for each input) may *INCORRECTLY* alter the output of the D2's internally generated test patterns (Video Source Adjust / Patterns). When using the D2's test patterns to set up the levels in your display, you need to temporarily reset the D2's input Color and Tint controls for the currently selected D2 input to their default values (50). Also note that applying Gamma Correction inside the D2 (Video Source Adjust / Output) *CORRECTLY* alters the D2's test patterns. I.e., if you apply Gamma Correction inside the D2 then you must iterate back and re-adjust Brightness and Contrast in your display until you find the sweet spot setting for Brightness and Contrast in your display and Gamma in the D2. EXAMPLE: Raising Exponential Gamma in the D2 darkens the video output of the D2. You adjust for this by raising Brightness in your display, and then also refining Contrast as these 2 controls usually interact.]
If you have an HTPC you probably already know this, but just in case, 1080p/24 should only be used if the original source content is "film based", that is, if the original content was recorded at 24fps.
There is no good way to convert video based content -- shot with a video camera at 30 or 60fps, or computer animation generated at 30 or 60fps -- into 24fps. Doing so is guaranteed to produce jerky looking results.
[CAUTION: Please note that /24 is actually a short-hand for the TRUE frame rate used when film-based content is presented as video. The exact frame rate is actually 23.976 fps for technical reasons. Your HTPC, being a computer after all, may be able to send out both 24.000 fps and 23.976 fps. If so, 23.976 is the correct value to use. A similar thing is going on with 480i/60 broadcasts.]
"Film based" content coming off a normal, Blu-Ray, movie disc is 1080p/24 if your player allows that form of output. [More precisely, 1080p at 23.976 fps.]
Live TV Blu-Ray discs on the other hand -- typically live music concerts these days -- are captured with a video camera and come off the disc at 1080i/60. You must not try to convert such content to 1080p/24.
"Film based" content broadcast for TV (in the US) has been raised from its original 24 frames per second of film speed to 480i/60, 720p/60, or 1080i/60 via the telecine process that duplicates selected fields (interlaced half frames) of the video in a specific cadence. It is possible to detect and remove the repeated fields and retrieve the original /24 from that /60 stream but the Anthem does not currently do that. Unless your HTPC does that properly, you'll need to use 480i/60, 720p/60, 1080i/60 or 1080p/60 when sending such content to the Anthem. This would include playing movies off of standard DVDs for example -- which would then be sent to the Anthem as 480i/60 if the player allows, even when playing a film based standard DVD.
Normal TV shows on the other hand, are "video based" and must be left at /60. This would include regular TV shows sold on standard DVDs.
Notes on video calibration basics for the D2 can be found in the "Video Calibration for non-ISF Techs" post which is in the collection of links in the first post of this thread.
Notes on frame rates and such can also be found in those collected links.
Finally, be sure you have updated your D2 to the latest firmware (V1.33 at the moment) as there have been significant video imaging improvements compared to older firmware. The latest firmware can be downloaded from Anthem's D2 web page.