Using HDFury devices to manage CIH - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 26 Old 01-31-2020, 10:18 AM - Thread Starter
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Using HDFury devices to manage CIH

Several months ago I inquired in the Diva thread whether it could detect and report aspect ratios, hoping to use it in web services or to call macros to control a JVC projector. As you will see, the answer is currently "no," but @HDfury says it is a possibility and they could pursue it if there is demand. Original inquiry: https://www.avsforum.com/forum/37-vi...l#post58730712

I was initially wanting to use it to select lens memory settings and control masking, but you'll notice that post was asked while the 2019 World Series was being played and I briefly lost interest in automating AR changes when seemingly every commercial shown during the Series broadcast changed aspect ratios. They were all over the place! I did end up getting an HDFury Vertex2 to help with HDCP handshake problems and am also getting the benefit of Dolby Vision enabled on my projector.

Now I'm back to investigating control options, so I would like to start a discussion to gauge interest and perhaps gather some requirements to provide HDFury. I suspect many of you may be craving the old Panasonic automated AR change, or Lumagen's AR features, in a cheaper package. So if you have ideas, please chime in!

Here are my initial thoughts on the things we want to accomplish and how the HDFury Device can help:

Customer Requirements (Use Cases - what we want to accomplish in our theater)
  1. Automatically trigger activity on Aspect Ratio change
  2. Option to NOT automatically change, but still calculate the AR and make available
  3. Move motorized masking
  4. Switch motorized screens
  5. Change projector settings (lamp setting, Anamorphic setting, picture mode, etc.)
  6. Change lens memory
  7. Call any arbitrary automation tool
  8. Call an HTPC or scaler
  9. Trigger lens transport
  10. Perform CIH scaling (Linear scaling) to fit narrower content into a fixed scope screen height.

Technical Requirements (What we want from the HDFury Device)
  1. Calculate the Aspect Ratio of the content passing through the device
  2. Make the aspect ratio available as a variable for use in macros
  3. Make the aspect ratio available as a variable for use in arbitrarily defined http calls (e.g., SOAP interface)
  4. Make the aspect ratio available to query through the web interface
  5. Related: Support https and security tokens as necessary for use in calling other devices
  6. Support using the AR in a range (e.g., treat 2.35, 2.39, 2.4, and everything in between, as the same)
  7. Support multiple independent actions (e.g., ratios below 1.78 may not change projector settings but may still need to change masking)
  8. Optionally make an immediate macro call on any AR change
  9. Optionally make a one-time change for current AR only at, for example, 30 seconds after a content change (e.g. frame rate goes to 24fps)
  10. Accept a remote call to the HDFury device to execute the configured triggers for the currently calculated AR
  11. Optionally scale input down linearly and apply pillar boxing and letterboxing such that content can be displayed at a Constant Image Height, targeting a user-defined screen aspect ratio.
  12. *wish list* Anamorphic stretch to a user-defined ratio
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post #2 of 26 Old 01-31-2020, 10:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ScottAvery View Post
Several months ago I inquired in the Diva thread whether it could detect and report aspect ratios, hoping to use it in web services or to call macros to control a JVC projector. As you will see, the answer is currently "no," but @HDfury says it is a possibility and they could pursue it if there is demand. Original inquiry: https://www.avsforum.com/forum/37-vi...l#post58730712

I was initially wanting to use it to select lens memory settings and control masking, but you'll notice that post was asked while the 2019 World Series was being played and I briefly lost interest in automating AR changes when seemingly every commercial shown during the Series broadcast changed aspect ratios. They were all over the place! I did end up getting an HDFUry Vertex2 to help with HDCP handshake problems and am also getting the benefit of Dolby Vision enabled on my projector.

Now I'm back to investigating control options, so I would like to start a discussion to gauge interest and perhaps gather some requirements to provide HDFury. I suspect many of you may be craving the old Panasonic automated AR change, or Lumagen's AR features, in a cheaper package. So if you have ideas, please chime in!

Here are my initial thoughts:

Customer Needs
  1. Automatically trigger activity on Aspect Ratio change
  2. Option to NOT automatically change, but still calculate the AR and make available
  3. Move motorized masking
  4. Switch motorized screens
  5. Change projector settings (lamp setting, Anamorphic setting, picture mode, etc.)
  6. Change lens memory
  7. Call any arbitrary automation tool
  8. Call an HTPC or scaler
  9. Trigger lens transport

Technical Requirements
  1. Calculate the Aspect Ratio of the content passing through the device
  2. Make the aspect ratio available as a variable for use in macros
  3. Make the aspect ratio available as a variable for use in arbitrarily defined http calls (e.g., SOAP interface)
  4. Related: Support https and security tokens as necessary for use in calling other devices
  5. Support using the AR in a range (e.g., treat 2.35, 2.39, 2.4 as the same (or not))
  6. Support multiple independent actions (e.g., ratios below 1.78 may not change projector settings but may still need to change masking)
  7. Optionally make an immediate macro call on any AR change
  8. Optionally make a one-time change for current AR only at, for example, 30 seconds after a content change (e.g. frame rate goes to 24fps)
  9. Accept a remote call to the HDFury device to execute the configured triggers for the currently calculated AR

Very good idea - something I'd be extremely interested in implementing.

My preference would be the HDFury device to simply report an aspect ratio or frame dimensions as a serial string so I can then decide programatically what to do with that. If hard coded decisions are made by the device then I think that dramatically reduces it's usefulness.

As an example I'd want to disable aspect changes on DTH sources since with adverts and wild aspect ratios used in some programs, the masks would be flying around the room!

I'd also like to make programatical decisions on how to handle multi-aspect presentations.

There would also have to be the ability to decide on AR due to either video dimensions or letter boxing in full frame - I initially remux discs without compression at full resolution but once watched, depending on my opinion of the worth of the film, I will often then compress down to about 30Gigs (for UHD) and also crop to the aspect ratio of the presentation for space considerations.

I think the ideal scenario would be a string giving the actual realtime active video dimensions since you can make any programatical decision you want from there...

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post #3 of 26 Old 01-31-2020, 10:53 AM
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It seems that what you're looking for is the HDFury to trigger your projector's lens memory and your automated masking system. Even in a best case scenario, that's going to take time for all the components to move at each change.

I'd much rather prioritize implementing a "21:9" mode similar to OPPO's or Lumagen's, which scales all video to fit constant-height within the 2.35:1 frame area when the projector is zoomed up to fill the 2.35:1 screen.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but right now no HDFury device even offers vertical stretch scaling for anamorphic lens support, do they? At the very least, that should be pretty simple to implement as a first step.

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post #4 of 26 Old 01-31-2020, 11:17 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh Z View Post
It seems that what you're looking for is the HDFury to trigger your projector's lens memory and your automated masking system. Even in a best case scenario, that's going to take time for all the components to move at each change.

I'd much rather prioritize implementing a "21:9" mode similar to OPPO's or Lumagen's, which scales all video to fit constant-height within the 2.35:1 frame area when the projector is zoomed up to fill the 2.35:1 screen.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but right now no HDFury device even offers vertical stretch scaling for anamorphic lens support, do they? At the very least, that should be pretty simple to implement as a first step.
I assure you, I went after that, too, but HDFury said they don't have the horsepower to do anamorphic scaling. I'm not sure how exactly that is the case given that they can do linear scaling, but that was the answer. I pointed out that an Oppo203 could do it at a comparable price point, but you'll see what that sparked.

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/37-vi...l#post58979862
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post #5 of 26 Old 01-31-2020, 11:43 AM
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Originally Posted by ScottAvery View Post
I assure you, I went after that, too, but HDFury said they don't have the horsepower to do anamorphic scaling. I'm not sure how exactly that is the case given that they can do linear scaling, but that was the answer. I pointed out that an Oppo203 could do it at a comparable price point, but you'll see what that sparked.

https://www.avsforum.com/forum/37-vi...l#post58979862
Well, that's disappointing. Thanks for trying, at least.

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post #6 of 26 Old 01-31-2020, 12:37 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by markswift2003 View Post
I'd want to disable aspect changes on DTH sources

I'd also like to make programatical decisions on how to handle multi-aspect presentations.
I don't know what DTH means, but would having different settings for each HDFury input port satisfy this?


Give me more on how you want to deal with multi-aspect and how might HDfury distinguish a Nolan film from a TV show with weird commercials.

Quote:
There would also have to be the ability to decide on AR due to either video dimensions or letter boxing in full frame
Isn't this taken care of by the player? Please explain more what is needed out of the HDFury device.
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post #7 of 26 Old 01-31-2020, 12:40 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Josh Z View Post
Well, that's disappointing. Thanks for trying, at least.
Let me clarify I was looking for anamorphic stretch. Maybe there is a possibility of pillarboxing, so I am including that as I agree that could help in some installs.

edit: Thinking on it, I have to jump through hoops to hit 2.2:1, so this scaling would make life a lot easier for me, too, as I could have the projector do anamorphic stretch to put it in the 2.37 frame and not have to change anything else. The double processing would cost some resolution for the convenience, though.

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post #8 of 26 Old 01-31-2020, 01:46 PM
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Originally Posted by ScottAvery View Post
I don't know what DTH means, but would having different settings for each HDFury input port satisfy this?
Sorry - it may be a UK thing - DTH = Direct to Home Satellite TX.

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Give me more on how you want to deal with multi-aspect and how might HDfury distinguish a Nolan film from a TV show with weird commercials.
So my background (or one of them!!) is Crestron programming, so I'd be looking for a status output from the HDFury device which I can then deal with externally - so the HDFury device simply reports in real time what the current aspect/frame dimension is and then it's down to the user or programmer to decide what they do with that.

Maybe in the case of a Nolan film, you choose to take the first aspect presented and stick to that. Or you set a time limit between aspect changes, or maybe some other logic - my current way of dealing with Nolan films is to mask both mechanically and electronically to 2.35 or 2.20 so I don't have to deal with the crazy and distracting (IMO) aspect changes during a movie since the movie will be framed such that a 2.35 presentation is acceptable.

The point is if you can simply get an aspect status from the HDFury device, you can then choose how your system deals with it.

Now obviously this assumes a certain level of automation and programming flexibility/ability, but I think trying to provide a "baked in" hard coded solution within the HDFury is a bit restrictive.

But again, not totally prohibitive, since even if that was the case, it's no great issue to parse for example a macro output and make programatical decisions from there. I'll take what I can get

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post #9 of 26 Old 01-31-2020, 07:15 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by markswift2003 View Post
So my background (or one of them!!) is Crestron programming, so I'd be looking for a status output from the HDFury device which I can then deal with externally - so the HDFury device simply reports in real time what the current aspect/frame dimension is and then it's down to the user or programmer to decide what they do with that.
I do not have Crestron in my near future but I do use a Universal Devices ISY-994i as an automation controller and would also want the HDFuryto be able to send messages to the ISY as well as receive queries from it. Is there a certain protocol needed for Crestron integration? Is that a new requirement over sending http messages?

The reason I speak to having the HDFury device itself drive automation is that it already does this, and some customers may not want another controller. You may not be aware that HDFury devices have been used to automatically change the gamma for HDR content on JVC projectors by sending RS232 control messages in response to content metadata. They've built in the ability to evaluate and react to content parameters. It should not be terribly difficult to extend that control if the Aspect Ratio calculations are made. edit: Do you use that on your x7000?
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post #10 of 26 Old 02-01-2020, 02:26 AM
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Originally Posted by ScottAvery View Post
I do not have Crestron in my near future but I do use a Universal Devices ISY-994i as an automation controller and would also want the HDFuryto be able to send messages to the ISY as well as receive queries from it. Is there a certain protocol needed for Crestron integration? Is that a new requirement over sending http messages?

The reason I speak to having the HDFury device itself drive automation is that it already does this, and some customers may not want another controller. You may not be aware that HDFury devices have been used to automatically change the gamma for HDR content on JVC projectors by sending RS232 control messages in response to content metadata. They've built in the ability to evaluate and react to content parameters. It should not be terribly difficult to extend that control if the Aspect Ratio calculations are made. edit: Do you use that on your x7000?

You hit the first implementation issue there - unlike the JVC macros which were originally specifically requested and implemented for JVC projectors to overcome their HDR issues, the issue of AR automation is much broader and the hardware to which it will interface varied so the answer would perhaps be for the HDFury to simply issue an AR status string in some form or other - maybe user definable as the current macros are. (I'm using the term macros here a bit loosely since that's how HDFury refer to them - they're really just serial strings)

HDFury recognised the shortcomings of the original macros and then in the Vertex 2 (which I have and am very familiar with) they provided the ability to squirt out custom strings rather than the baked in JVC ones.

With the original Vertex I took the fixed JVC strings and parsed them in a Crestron program in which I then wrote logic to control the projector rather than the Vertex doing it directly - much more flexible.

I can envisage a similar system for AR recognition, but as I say, a realtime output of AR status, whether that be dimensions or ratios, would then allow the logic to be written by the user or the system integrator in time honoured "if this then that else this" form within the control system.

There are many runtime decisions to be made over AR automation (The Nolan factor, source choices, peculiar aspect ratios etc etc) and the logic required would be different in every installation so trying to second guess that in an HDFury device would be well beyond the device's scope.

I'm not familiar with ISY but I'd assume it has the ability to take in a serial string over RS-232 or TCP/IP or HTTP etc and then you decide what the system does with that?

As far as Crestron or AMX etc go, there is no fixed protocol as such - that resides in the client it's talking to - you take serial inputs from RS-232 etc (which is my preference for robustness) or over IP in whatever protocol whether over TCP or UDP in HTTP, HTTPS etc.

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What I would like in a device is the capability to support a fixed horizontal expansion A lens pointed at a 2.4:1 screen on a 16:9 projector. I would never want to move the lens and never want to use lens memory.

It seems that a good scaler would be able to fill this need.

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post #12 of 26 Old 02-02-2020, 06:17 PM - Thread Starter
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What I would like in a device is the capability to support a fixed horizontal expansion A lens pointed at a 2.4:1 screen on a 16:9 projector. I would never want to move the lens and never want to use lens memory.

It seems that a good scaler would be able to fill this need.
As mentioned to Josh above, HDFury says they can't handle anamorphic stretch, but I think we can still ask about scaling for CIH without a lens, in which case you could still accomplish the stretch with another device, like an OPPO or the projector itself.
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As mentioned to Josh above, HDFury says they can't handle anamorphic stretch, but I think we can still ask about scaling for CIH without a lens, in which case you could still accomplish the stretch with another device, like an OPPO or the projector itself.
Right on.

So using this as the working environment:
2.4:1 screen
Optoma UHD 65 (No lens memory)
ISCO IIIL (No sled at this point)

(The goal is to be able to watch scope movies with all my pixels being used. 16:9 content is a lower priority.)

I could fix mount the lens, use the projector to do the vertical stretch, and have fun with scope movies. When 16:9 comes on this setting would chop the top and bottom of the screen I believe.

With a Lumigen I could leave the lens in place and that box would handle all the scaling I need to have full screen scope movies and appropriate aspect ration 16:9 with black bars on the side.

Or I can find a sled and watch 16:9 with everything native, no lens, and slide the lens in place and use the projector scaler to do the appropriate stretch for scope movies.

Am I missing any options for my limited feature set projector?

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post #14 of 26 Old 02-02-2020, 09:40 PM - Thread Starter
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Right on.

So using this as the working environment:
2.4:1 screen
Optoma UHD 65 (No lens memory)
ISCO IIIL (No sled at this point)

(The goal is to be able to watch scope movies with all my pixels being used. 16:9 content is a lower priority.)

I could fix mount the lens, use the projector to do the vertical stretch, and have fun with scope movies. When 16:9 comes on this setting would chop the top and bottom of the screen I believe.

With a Lumigen I could leave the lens in place and that box would handle all the scaling I need to have full screen scope movies and appropriate aspect ration 16:9 with black bars on the side.

Or I can find a sled and watch 16:9 with everything native, no lens, and slide the lens in place and use the projector scaler to do the appropriate stretch for scope movies.

Am I missing any options for my limited feature set projector?
As mentioned in your other thread, you can substitute an Oppo203 for the Lumagen if you only care about two ratios, 16x9 and scope. You will have to pay a premium for it used, but it is still less than a Lumagen.

The Lumagen, however, would do any arbitrary ratio you need, so certainly more powerful.

What stretch modes does the UHD 65 have? A JVC projector, for example, can do 16x9 pass through, 2.35 stretch, and 16x9 pillarboxed into 2.35 stretch. That last one lets you watch 16x9 with a lens in place without cropping off the top.
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post #15 of 26 Old 02-03-2020, 09:10 AM
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Or I can find a sled and watch 16:9 with everything native, no lens, and slide the lens in place and use the projector scaler to do the appropriate stretch for scope movies.
This isn't really an option, unfortunately. Older anamorphic lenses will not pass 4k detail. You need a Panamorph Paladin lens. The Paladin line are designed for permanent installation. Panamorph does not make a lens sled for them, and the lens will not mount to older sleds. (Believe me, I tried.)

I suppose if you're handy you could custom build something.
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This isn't really an option, unfortunately. Older anamorphic lenses will not pass 4k detail. You need a Panamorph Paladin lens. The Paladin line are designed for permanent installation. Panamorph does not make a lens sled for them, and the lens will not mount to older sleds. (Believe me, I tried.)

I suppose if you're handy you could custom build something.
Josh, you did your 4k test with a UH480, right? Not really in the same league as the ISCO IIIL nexus99 is planning to use.

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post #17 of 26 Old 02-03-2020, 11:25 AM
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Josh, you did your 4k test with a UH480, right? Not really in the same league as the ISCO IIIL nexus99 is planning to use.
Fair enough. But I still wouldn't take it on faith that it will work.

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Anyone else have thoughts on CIH management through HDFury? I saw a comment on digital masking in another thread and am following up on that.
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post #19 of 26 Old 02-10-2020, 11:21 AM
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Fair enough. But I still wouldn't take it on faith that it will work.
Ive seen numerous posts that claim a IIIL is fine with 4k. I will know soon enough I suppose and can report back :-)

My room has a short throw (13'), 4k, etc... so if it can work in my room it should be able to work in many other 'easier' to support scenarios.

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post #20 of 26 Old 02-19-2020, 09:42 AM - Thread Starter
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So, I broached the subject with HDFury again and the answer was a little disheartening. Apparently only the Diva might have the processing power for it and they would not consider the project without 100 or more customers expressing interest. Only 6 have chimed in so far, but I have not made a real campaign of it.


I'm very frustrated hearing this as I only bought an HDFury device after discussing this feature option with them, and I chose the Vertex 2 for input/output flexibility, which turns out is not helpful in my install as I am only passing through a single input/output. In the meantime I may be able to use the secondary output to send a signal to a secondary monitor with light sensors attached that could determine aspect ratio. Perhaps that requires another thread in the DIY section...
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post #21 of 26 Old 02-20-2020, 12:04 AM
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Hi Scott

I’m researching whether to get a Vertex2 or a Diva or keep my Vertex to enable lldv control a jvc x7000 maybe drive a second projector.

Maybe I was the one asking about masking for “Nolanesque” movies, it might be a reason to upgrade.

Put me down as an interested party for CIH automation. Ideally I would want to run 2.35:1 zoomed overscan and fit everything within that but I’d be interested in anything that might work with lens memories too. Masking tied to it would be interesting too.

Looks like I should order a Diva to be on the safe side.

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post #22 of 26 Old 02-20-2020, 09:55 AM - Thread Starter
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Hi Scott

I’m researching whether to get a Vertex2 or a Diva or keep my Vertex to enable lldv control a jvc x7000 maybe drive a second projector.

Maybe I was the one asking about masking for “Nolanesque” movies, it might be a reason to upgrade.

Put me down as an interested party for CIH automation. Ideally I would want to run 2.35:1 zoomed overscan and fit everything within that but I’d be interested in anything that might work with lens memories too. Masking tied to it would be interesting too.

Looks like I should order a Diva to be on the safe side.
I confirmed with HDFury today that the key difference in Diva and Vertex 2 is that the Diva is configured to always downscale the second output to 1080p where the Vertex2 can output 18Ghz 4K on both outputs. The Vertex2 can optionally downscale the second output to 1080p but if the source is HDR, it stays HDR, because the Vertex2 does not have the extra processor that does HDR->SDR conversion in the Diva.


I originally wanted to loopback through the Vertex but I recently had the idea to run a second screen either at the rack as a monitor or outside the theater as a preview/bar screen. If it is a small screen I would not need/want 4k HDR, when 1080p SDR will look just as good.


Does the original Vertex do LLDV? You may find that you need both depending on your config. I could benefit from a second HDFury device to avoid the loopback, but I don't really need two of their high end units.



HDFury is looking for Likes of the top post to gauge interest. I may end up making a duplicate thread over in the Video Processor forum to broaden the audience as this forum is a smaller community.
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post #23 of 26 Old 02-20-2020, 12:38 PM
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Originally Posted by ScottAvery View Post





Does the original Vertex do LLDV? You may find that you need both depending on your config. I could benefit from a second HDFury device to avoid the loopback, but I don't really need two of their high end units.







HDFury is looking for Likes of the top post to gauge interest. I may end up making a duplicate thread over in the Video Processor forum to broaden the audience as this forum is a smaller community.


I can do lldv with the vertex I have already but my AVR doesn’t pass DV (even lldv) so I need the vertex before the avr which means I can only use it for two inputs. That might be enough but maybe it’s time to upgrade, six hours of train travel today seemed a good time to read up.

I’ve added my like but having read all of the vertex2 and Diva threads they don’t seem particularly keen on doing this.

Hoping to have some time tomorrow to try some different configurations with the vertex so I can work out what I really need.

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post #24 of 26 Old 02-20-2020, 01:46 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by AndreNewman View Post
I can do lldv with the vertex I have already but my AVR doesn’t pass DV (even lldv) so I need the vertex before the avr which means I can only use it for two inputs. That might be enough but maybe it’s time to upgrade, six hours of train travel today seemed a good time to read up.

I’ve added my like but having read all of the vertex2 and Diva threads they don’t seem particularly keen on doing this.

Hoping to have some time tomorrow to try some different configurations with the vertex so I can work out what I really need.
I have to ask how many DV capable sources do you plan to use? A streamer and a disc player should cover you.
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post #25 of 26 Old 02-20-2020, 03:11 PM
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This isn't really an option, unfortunately. Older anamorphic lenses will not pass 4k detail. You need a Panamorph Paladin lens. The Paladin line are designed for permanent installation. Panamorph does not make a lens sled for them, and the lens will not mount to older sleds. (Believe me, I tried.)



I suppose if you're handy you could custom build something.
If I may chime in, older prism based adapters (even with a correction element) will struggle with 4k but a cylindrical lens has the ability to resolve beyond 4K because the adjustmentable lens design where you are able to change the spacing between the lenses.
My lens resolves true 4k to the point where the interpixek gaps can be see resulting in jaggies on text.
The only problem is short throws where the lens may suffer vignetting.

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post #26 of 26 Old 02-21-2020, 07:41 AM
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I have to ask how many DV capable sources do you plan to use? A streamer and a disc player should cover you.


It’s just an apple tv for dv, a uhd bluray player which needs the vertex to block hdr flag and tell the jvc projector what profile to load. That all fits but I have a htpc running madvr for hdr tone mapping and that needs to signal bt2020 or bt709 as appropriate, probably I can do the htpc another way, just need to experiment a little.

For now I’m working abroad for a couple of weeks so I’d rather leave everything working smoothly for my wife while I’m away.

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