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Gefen Set to Launch SD to HD Home Theater Scaler for $399

post #1 of 214
Thread Starter 
At first glance, the Gefen Home Theater Scaler looks like just another cheap Mac mini knock-off, but it's so much more than that. Assuming that it works as advertised, the HTS will upconvert your standard-definition video to high-definition, all the way up to 1080p.

info pages:
http://www.gefen.com/kvm/product.jsp?prod_id=4174
http://www.ehomeupgrade.com/entry/3240/gefen_set_to

Mmm, I wonder how this will preform. Maybe it will usher in an era of ultra-cheap video processors...
post #2 of 214
I think scaling is not as big an issue or as difficult a process as proper de-interlacing of SD and HD.
post #3 of 214
I think this is interesting...lets see how it really performs...
post #4 of 214
There is already a thread opened few days ago please follow this one
post #5 of 214
Gefen has a pretty good reputation. Still, I doubt that something like this can do what the VP30/ABT102, CII or Lumagen scalers do.
post #6 of 214
Well ofcourse not, but the question is what can it do at this entry level price point??
post #7 of 214
http://www.mstarsemi.com/

any ideas about them?
post #8 of 214
i did a little more research and i'll bet that this is the chip....but it's just a guess.

Mstar announces MST5251A UXGA LCD TV controller

Chris Hall, DigiTimes.com, Taipei [Thursday 2 June 2005]

As a number of Taiwan companies have learned, LCD controllers are a brutally competitive segment, subject to extreme downward pressure on pricing. That isn't stopping Mstar Semiconductor from offering advanced designs, and on day one of Computex, Mstar announced its MST5251A UXGA LCD TV controller.

This LCD controller features an integrated HDMI 1.0 receiver at up to UXGA resolution and targets the North American market for digital TV. Mstar's MST5251A controller also incorporates a dual high-performance 3D motion adaptive video de-interlacer. This feature, commented company executive Kakuc Chen, enables the MST5251A to compete directly with Genesys Logic's current HDTV solution.

Cost reduction is always a design imperative for this type of controller, and the MST5251A product integrates the MstarACE-2 advanced picture/color processing engine, enabling TV manufacturers to save on the cost of a separate picture/color processing chip. Other leading features of this controller include enhanced 3D noise reduction, as well as dual high-quality non-linear scaling engines.

The MST5251A UXGA LCD TV controller is in mass production now. "We have the ability to help our customers get their TV products into mass production quickly, enabling fast time to market," emphasized Chen.

Mstar, headquartered in Hsinchu, Taiwan, is a relatively young company. Since it started out in 2002, Mstar has focused on the development of highly integrated flat-panel display ICs and mixed signal ASIC solutions.
post #9 of 214
Hi Guys,
Does anyone know if this box can do vertical stretch on 1080i/p 24/60 material ? There's not much info yet on this scaler yet since it's not available... I sent an email to Geffen asking them for more vertical stretch info.
-bert
post #10 of 214
I'd really like to know if it'll take the 1080p output of the PS3 and pass that through to my display, as well as upconverting the games that only run in 720p. Sounds too good to be true at that price.
post #11 of 214
How much do Realta or HQV (just the) chips cost?

Maybe someone can build a video processor with one of those chips for $399, perhaps without so many HDMI inputs and perhaps without a composite input that needs a comb filter, and blow away the internal processing (picture quality wise) of more than 90% of the HDTV's currently being sold.

Wait a minute! The thread title says SD to HD scaling. You only need a SIL504 or equivalent (there's your motion adaptiveness) and some inexpensive already ubiquitous scaling to do that. Even SD to SD units (de-interlacing only) are hard to come by at low prices other than secondhand and this Gefen unit may fill that niche too.

Video hints:
http://members.aol.com/ajaynejr/viddoubl.htm
post #12 of 214
They dont cost as much as the processors they appear in would have you believe. There have been tech articles recently that note many of the LCD and plasma siplay manufacturers are starting to look at these processors for inclusion in their upcoming lines of displays to increase picture quality advert that as a value add feature to distinguish themselves. A 42 LCD that sells for $2500 will not all of a sudden cost $3500 because they added advanced processing. It may cost another $200. The days of $3000 Video scalers are numbered.

for example, Syntax Olevia (not a high-end or boutique brand) is already starting to include HQV class processing in their LCD panels for a pretty small premium:
http://www.olevia.com/jsp/products/f...s.jsp?pid=747i
post #13 of 214
Stop the PRESSES!!!

Just called Gefen about the delay to the HD TH Scaler. The sales rep mentioned that the first designs weren't up to specs and that Gefen was going to change to the Gennum chipset!!! Plus, the new price was $450, but they would be honoring the initial $400 pre-order price for early adopters. Way to go Gefen!!!!
post #14 of 214
Is there a release date?
post #15 of 214
I called them and they mentioned end of january if my memory serves me correctly
post #16 of 214
Don't Gennum have an entry-level chip as well as the VXP?
post #17 of 214
good question....choddp2006

that's immediately what i looked for on the website, but the only one mentioned was the VXP.
i guess we won't know until the release of the product.
post #18 of 214
very interesting, but Gennum doesn't necessarily mean VXP.

Also, we need to know what else is going in there. If there's minimal features, it might not be relevant to many people here.
post #19 of 214
Could anyone explain the difference between *upconverting* and *upscaling*?

I'd like to get the best PQ possible from my 1080p set and want an unscaler to attach to my cable TV, Bluray player, and PS3, but am unclear as to what I need to do so.
post #20 of 214
Quote:
Just called Gefen about the delay to the HD TH Scaler. The sales rep mentioned that the first designs weren't up to specs and that Gefen was going to change to the Gennum chipset!!! Plus, the new price was $450, but they would be honoring the initial $400 pre-order price for early adopters. Way to go Gefen!!!!

Excellent news, if true. If they are using Gennum, they'll have a giant-killer on their hands. They could sell tens of thousands with the right press...

Quote:
very interesting, but Gennum doesn't necessarily mean VXP.

Also, we need to know what else is going in there. If there's minimal features, it might not be relevant to many people here.

AFAIK, Gennum doesn't offer any scaling solutions outside of the VXP. Gennum's new GF9450 is more featured and less expensive than their previous solutions, so that's a possibility. Another possibility is that Gefen got an excellent price on an earlier version of the VXP that Gennum is clearing out with the release of the GF9450 now imminent. Once the new GF9450 is shipping, there probably won't be much demand for their older, less capable solutions that may still be sitting in a warehouse somewhere. It's not like these chips were expensive new, just a bit over $30 in quantity.

Either way, you can't expect Gefen to support all the advanced functionality of $2000+ scalers, even those that might be using the same chip. The Gennum VXP itself was never in line with the cost of the products that used it; it's always been the software and implementation R&D that was expensive. If Gefen is using VXP, I would expect a very basic feature set to minimize R&D cost.
post #21 of 214
Quote:
Could anyone explain the difference between *upconverting* and *upscaling*?

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=769171
post #22 of 214
If this product provides what it claims to, this will be a revolutionary product at this price point.

- Motion adaptive, inverse telecine for 1080i sources
- noise reduction
- full transcoding of all inputs to HDMI

At $449 this is simply amazing.
post #23 of 214
Tom,

Don't get ahead of yourself. Lets wait and see and then we can see if this product really does it all.
post #24 of 214
On a side note of Manufacturers adding processors it was mentioned to me by SharpUSA Rep shared future info until Sharp forbid him from sharing here since CEDIA, he had hinted before CEDIA that the next Gen D92 Sharps may incorporate the Micronas TruD Chip added to the 120Hz of that panel.

The Website demo's the Micronas TruD HD and looks impressive for Manufacturers inclusion but I don't recall this ever being discussed in the VP section.

He hinted the D92's would have an additional $1K added for the improved featureset over the D62 units but of course that was before all the recent price drops and QC issues with the D62's that I would guess would slice that in half.

Below is a page of Flash Demo's or perhaps these are just enhancements to bring LCD a few steps further? Looks great if it delivers and they will have a booth at CES - just along the thoughts of Manu's adding advance processing to separate one's quality from the pack and at a much lower cost we can hope.

http://www.micronas.com/products/tru...ex.html#145752
post #25 of 214
Quote:
Originally Posted by westa6969 View Post

The Website demo's the Micronas TruD HD and looks impressive for Manufacturers inclusion but I don't recall this ever being discussed in the VP section.

I had asked in the PixelMagic forum about Micronas TruD HD. They've seen it at some show but they didn't like it too much. They said it's their impression that the technology isn't far enough yet.
post #26 of 214
Quote:


On a side note of Manufacturers adding processors it was mentioned to me by SharpUSA Rep shared future info until Sharp forbid him from sharing here since CEDIA, he had hinted before CEDIA that the next Gen D92 Sharps may incorporate the Micronas TruD Chip added to the 120Hz of that panel.

The Website demo's the Micronas TruD HD and looks impressive for Manufacturers inclusion but I don't recall this ever being discussed in the VP section.

He hinted the D92's would have an additional $1K added for the improved featureset over the D62 units but of course that was before all the recent price drops and QC issues with the D62's that I would guess would slice that in half.

Below is a page of Flash Demo's or perhaps these are just enhancements to bring LCD a few steps further? Looks great if it delivers and they will have a booth at CES - just along the thoughts of Manu's adding advance processing to separate one's quality from the pack and at a much lower cost we can hope.

I usually refrain from being a wise ass, but what does this have to do with the new Gefen Home Theater Scaler?
post #27 of 214
fellas, please stick to the subject at hand
post #28 of 214
Quote:
Originally Posted by bri1270 View Post

what does this have to do with the new Gefen Home Theater Scaler?

I think what this means is that along with the Gefen many Display manufactures will be incorporating cost effective and much improved scaling solutions thus eliminating the need for the likes of DVDO, Lumagen etc. These companies will either have to reduce their prices or disappear.

CD
post #29 of 214
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cattledog View Post

I think what this means is that along with the Gefen many Display manufactures will be incorporating cost effective and much improved scaling solutions thus eliminating the need for the likes of DVDO, Lumagen etc. These companies will either have to reduce their prices or disappear.

CD

A sub $500 processor with no reviews? Until I hear more I have serious doubts of it replacing anything in the VP foodchain.
post #30 of 214
Here is the response I received from Gefen on this product:

Quote:


Thank you for your suggestions and recommendations concerning the processor to be used in the Home Theatre Scaler.

We use Gennum VXP processors in our HDSDI/DVI scaler products (two of them), but not in the HTS at this time. To do so would drive the retail price unrealistically high for the average home consumer, who simply wishes to hook up an Xbox360 or PS3 (or DVD player) to a large video display. As it stands now, the retail price is going to be $449. Should we put a Gennum processor into the device, the retail price would climb drastically, probably over $1000. I don't think many home consumers would think of buying the unit at that price.


Regards,

Robert Van
Technical Support Engineer
818-8xx-6xxx / Los Angeles, CA, USACC: AH

It looks like some of the recent excitement over Gefen's $399 HTS was unjustified, as Mr. Van of Gefen confirmed yesterday that the HTS will not use technology from Gennum.

The following two products do use Gennum VXP processing:

Gefen HDSDI to DVI Scaler ($1049)
Gefen DVI to HDSDI Scaler ($1299)
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