TEST RESULTS ON UPSCALING: XA2 vs. SDI+Crystallio 2 - Page 2 - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #31 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 06:10 PM
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Thank you for all your efforts, lorelevitt!

Please tell us about the "Edge Enhancement" feature! Despite the dreadful labeling I assume it is in fact HQV's quite decent "detail enhancement" filter - therefor it's use should be without exessive and horrible ringing/halo artifacts. Would you mind taking a look?
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post #32 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 06:17 PM
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Actually, I agreed with Lore on the second jaggies test. I thought that the xa2 performed a little better--not a lot, but perceptible.

On the Detail test, I thought that the CII did look better--sharper and more clearly defined. Also, on the Film Detail test (the racetrack) the CII locked on quicker than the xa2.

The noise eduction test was one area in which I thought that the xa2 was clearly superior. This confirmed our earlier tests with various video processors. The HQV algorithms are exceptional in their ability to reduce noise without reducing detail.

With SD program material I preferred the xa2. It's hard to explain but the image was smooth yet very detailed, with exceptional color saturation and depth. The objective tests suggested that this was due the the Reon's superior noise reduction, but I suspect there was something else going on as well.

The HD DVD material was stunning, though I could not evaluate this because I was not familiar with what HD DVD looked like on Lore's display with the A1.

I hadn't planned on buying this unit, but this experience has caused me to reevaluate.

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post #33 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 06:19 PM
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The reason the Toshiba is so much more expensive is that it is a high-def DVD player, not because it was designed to upconvert SD discs better than any other DVD player.

That's exactly what everyone is raving about. It uses the same chip (Silicon Optix) for upconverting SD DVDs that many higher priced/ high performance players use.
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post #34 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 06:20 PM
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The Oppo 970 outclassed ALL DVD players, many costing MANY hundreds of dollars more. Unless you actually have seen the image of the 980, I wouldn't just dismiss it out of hand. The reason the Toshiba is so much more expensive is that it is a high-def DVD player, not because it was designed to upconvert SD discs better than any other DVD player.

The Crystalio II Video Processor he used for upconversion is a $5k piece of equipment. The Oppo can't touch it.
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post #35 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 06:27 PM
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The XA2 is amazing just as I originally reported. It's easily the best player visually on the market. We compared it with Meridian units and it was superior.

That says a lot.
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post #36 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 06:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dschuman View Post

The Oppo 970 outclassed ALL DVD players, many costing MANY hundreds of dollars more. Unless you actually have seen the image of the 980, I wouldn't just dismiss it out of hand. The reason the Toshiba is so much more expensive is that it is a high-def DVD player, not because it was designed to upconvert SD discs better than any other DVD player.

No one questions that this is an HD DVD player. It just turns out to be an unexpected bonus is that is a first class upscaling DVD player.

Since I was hoping for something that would do a passable job at just that task, so that I could replace my existing player instead of having to add yet another box to the rack, this is awesome news.
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post #37 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 06:32 PM
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To bad I still have to solve the upscaling problem for D* and OTA SD. I'm not real hopeful about the capability of the 70XBR2 in that area.
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post #38 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 06:57 PM
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When upscaling std DVDs... does the XA2 give the flexibility of moving the sub-titles inside the viewing area? This feature would be great for 2.35:1 screens in a constant image height set up.
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post #39 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 06:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boxwes View Post

The Crystalio II Video Processor he used for upconversion is a $5k piece of equipment. The Oppo can't touch it.

So, a $1k piece of equipment beat out a $5k piece, yet you out of hand dismiss the Oppo? Would I be correct in assuming that you have not seen the Oppo HD-980 in action as yet?
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post #40 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 07:10 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheLion View Post

Thank you for all your efforts, lorelevitt!

Please tell us about the "Edge Enhancement" feature! Despite the dreadful labeling I assume it is in fact HQV's quite decent "detail enhancement" filter - therefor it's use should be without exessive and horrible ringing/halo artifacts. Would you mind taking a look?

You know there was never any reason to turn on the edge enhancement because the natural image was so sharp both for DVD's and HD-DVD's. But I'll take a look at it tomorrow evening and report back. I generally like to do these qualitative tests with a second pair of impartial eyes so that it just isn't "my" opinion alone.
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post #41 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 07:26 PM
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Lore and Tom,
Thank you for the insightful review! I am going to order an HD-XA2 tomorrow. I was already happy with my HD-XA1 but this thing sounds fantastic! I concur with your idea about someone releasing a Reon VX processor. It would be great, as noted, for DirecTV and other stuff.

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post #42 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 07:29 PM
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How much of a difference is the xa2 to the xa1, could I visibly notice a difference without running tests?
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post #43 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 07:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dschuman View Post

So, a $1k piece of equipment beat out a $5k piece, yet you out of hand dismiss the Oppo? Would I be correct in assuming that you have not seen the Oppo HD-980 in action as yet?

Jeez...what is with all the Oppo freaks around here. It is a great upconverting DVD player for sure, but it is not in the same league as the XA2 or the Crystallio II. Why doesn't one of you 980 owners offer to lend it to the OP so he can test it? I assure you it score one point lower in almost every category.

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post #44 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 07:31 PM
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You've sold me. Looks like I'll be buying an HD-XA2 mainly for use as an upscaling SD player (I was considering the $1,500. Denon 3930) and for use secondly ...as an HD-DVD player.
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post #45 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 07:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Murilo View Post

How much of a difference is the xa2 to the xa1, could I visibly notice a difference without running tests?

Yes, has anyone compared the gen1 units yet? The SD playback on my A1 is bafflingly good.

I don't know how they do it.
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post #46 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 07:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Murilo View Post

How much of a difference is the xa2 to the xa1, could I visibly notice a difference without running tests?

There would be a significant difference because the A1 doesn't have the ReonVX processor.
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post #47 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 07:40 PM
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Great work, lorelevitt; and thanks! This erases any lingering misgivings I had about having returned an XA1 for a pre-order on the XA2. I hope you'll follow up with your impressions of the on-board video enhancements; particularly on less than stellar transfers.
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post #48 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 07:44 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by rto View Post

Great work, lorelevitt; and thanks! This erases any lingering misgivings I had about having returned an XA1 for a pre-order on the XA2. I hope you'll follow up with your impressions of the on-board video enhancements; particularly on less than stellar transfers.

It would be useful if anyone has any suggestions of scenes from SD DVD's I should look at with the XA2. Hopefully I'll have a copy of that DVD in my collection.
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post #49 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 07:51 PM
 
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Please tell us about the "Edge Enhancement" feature! Despite the dreadful labeling I assume it is in fact HQV's quite decent "detail enhancement" filter - therefor it's use should be without excessive and horrible ringing/halo artifacts. Would you mind taking a look?

I have been testing using various settings, including the "Edge Enhancement" feature. You are right, the name Toshiba chose for this is terrible, especially around this forum, but fortunately, what this feature does is anything but terrible. This appears to be a detail enhancement tool that actually enhances detail without inducing any visible ringing. I have my player set with this setting at "1" (selections are off, 1, 2) and block noise reduction on. SD DVD looks the best I have ever seen. Perhaps even as good as what the Anthem D-2 does with SD DVD.
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post #50 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 08:07 PM
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*drools*
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post #51 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 08:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KramerTC View Post

When upscaling std DVDs... does the XA2 give the flexibility of moving the sub-titles inside the viewing area? This feature would be great for 2.35:1 screens in a constant image height set up.


I do not think so....In LOTR, the subtitles are at the bottom of the viewing area, can't move them, and no zoom on SD DVD.

It's all about 1080P/24 & HD audio
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post #52 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 08:12 PM
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I'm sure when you get the firmware that enables 1080p24 on the XA2, you'll compare that to the Crystallio II taking 1080i60 (say, from an A1 or A2) and outputting it at 1080p24 as well?

Won't you?

Excellent writeup, thanks for sharing your test results.

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post #53 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 08:16 PM
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well, I'm not that surprised. The HQV test disk is, well, designed to show off HQV algos. (ok granted most of them are quite objective). So a HQV player ought to pass all of them. Do u also have the DVDO test disc ? The HQV doesn't do too well there. The real life performance therefore will be much different. And for that, unfortunately there will never be a "benchmark" for it. (for the record I have some material the HQV performs very poorly, whereas an ordinary dvdp/PJ performs better)

..although I certainly agree the video processor nowadays is getting harder to sell once you see HQV/VXP chips going mainstream. 8 yrs ago the 1st Faroudja equipped dvdp sells for $800, today it's like $100. Will we see $200 HQV players ? When that happens VPs better sell for <1k.
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post #54 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 08:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by azmodien View Post

Yes, has anyone compared the gen1 units yet? The SD playback on my A1 is bafflingly good.

I don't know how they do it.

How about comparing the A2/XA2 to a MCE 2005 HTPC using NVidia Purevideo decoder?
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post #55 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 08:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HPforMe View Post

There would be a significant difference because the A1 doesn't have the ReonVX processor.


I dont know how significant it could possibly be to the human eye, yes as someone said running an hqv test of course the hqv equipment will yeild great results. This is like ati when using my htpc, does great on hqv tests but real time real world situations, I dont find it to be as great even though when i did the test ati beat purevideo in hqv tests, real time i didnt see it the same.

I know pictures dont tell the entire story, but if someone can post non doctored comparison shots i would like to see how dramtic of difference it is to the human eye with real material.
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post #56 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 09:22 PM
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Lorelevitt, thanks for posting your comparisions.

I do have one critical question: How does the XA2 handle the colorspace conversion of SD DVDs? Does it transform Rec.601 SD colorspace to HD Rec.709 spec?
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post #57 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 09:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Murilo View Post

I dont know how significant it could possibly be to the human eye, yes as someone said running an hqv test of course the hqv equipment will yeild great results. This is like ati when using my htpc, does great on hqv tests but real time real world situations, I dont find it to be as great even though when i did the test ati beat purevideo in hqv tests, real time i didnt see it the same.

I know pictures dont tell the entire story, but if someone can post non doctored comparison shots i would like to see how dramtic of difference it is to the human eye with real material.

It's true eyeballing is going to have to be the final test. Comparative pics are also important. But I trust the OP's judgment here.
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post #58 of 291 Old 01-07-2007, 10:00 PM
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So, a $1k piece of equipment beat out a $5k piece, yet you out of hand dismiss the Oppo? Would I be correct in assuming that you have not seen the Oppo HD-980 in action as yet?

I have not seen the 980, but have a 970HD that was my primary player before I bought my A1. Oppo makes a mighty fine player, especially for the price. But, I do not pretend that they compete with the ultra high end video processors, nor are they intended to.
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post #59 of 291 Old 01-08-2007, 03:50 AM
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The HQV test disk is, well, designed to show off HQV algos. (ok granted most of them are quite objective). So a HQV player ought to pass all of them. Do u also have the DVDO test disc ? The HQV doesn't do too well there.

This is just silly.

First, it is misleading at best to suggest that these are two entirely different test discs. They share many of the same tests in common.

Second, the VP50 does as well or better than HQV processors on the HQV test disc on every test, except the noise reduction test. This is not surprising since the VP50 doesn't have noise reduction.

Note: The HQV discs may reveal some minor differences between DVDO processors and Realta-based processors on some of the weird cadences, which is of little consequence to the overwhelming majority of users. However, Gennum processors do just as well here.

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post #60 of 291 Old 01-08-2007, 03:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TomHuffman View Post

This is just silly.

First, it is misleading at best to suggest that these are two entirely different test discs. They share many of the same tests in common.

Second, the VP50 does as well or better than HQV processors on the HQV test disc on every test, except the noise reduction test. This is not surprising since the VP50 doesn't have noise reduction.

Note: The HQV discs may reveal some minor differences between DVDO processors and Realta-based processors on some of the weird cadences, which is of little consequence to the overwhelming majority of users. However, Gennum processors do just as well here.

I don't disagree with you. However, it should be noted that the HQV test disc surely doesn't contain any sequences which could put any HQV processor into bad light. HQV would be stupid to release such a disc. So an independent disc could possibly show some shortcomings of HQV processors which Gennum processors might not have. I'm NOT saying that this will actually be the case. I'm just saying that it's no surprise that a HQV processor never totally slips with a HQV test disc.
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