A few comments about my upconversion test of Sammy against Toshiba.
The difference between these two sets is not great enough to easily tell from memory. Playing a movie on one and then the other will be challenging as far as telling which is better. After all, both are working from pretty low-res SD sources, upsampling nearly 6X.
I did not have enough time to do full tests. Sspears is doing that (and so far, based on his early tests, he is less happy with the Sammy than I was!). Anyway, pausing does not work because of field vs frame freeze. So we did a simple test. We put in a DVD that had fine text/graphics as its start-up menu. We then let both players get to that point and sit there (we had two of the same title). We then compared the two units using two HDMI inputs on the Sony Qualia 1080 LCD. The Sammy was softer but we noticed that the Sony LCD has different set up for each HDMI input as the colors were not the same. If sharpness was set up different for the two inputs, that would nullify the test. This being a Japanese set, with Japanese menus, it is a pain to navigate the menus. So fixing the setup was not a practical option.
So we did the test the old fashion way. We got someone to sit behind the sets and switch from one player to the other on the same HDMI input on the Sony. Here, it was clear that the Sammy's interpolator is softer. The Toshiba was sharper, without a hint of ringing or over-sharpening. It simply had a cleaner, more defined look.
Mind you, we are still talking about rather horrible pictures compared to HD (those who think SD and HD should come and see this demo
). Both sets were soft, very soft in grand scheme of things on above material (i.e. text and graphics). But relative to each other, the Sammy, in 1080i upsampling mode, loses to Toshiba.
Plazman, do you happen to have two of the same SD DVD? If not, it would be great to go and buy one with the above characteristics and give it a try. Also let us know the resolution of your display. Ours was 1920x1080 so it could resolve everything that could be there.
And per my hint above, sspears is doing more scientific testing and I am sure will report back soon