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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Tonite I tried my 75U with HTPC (Dell laptop +WinDVD) and my Toshiba DVD player component output (few years old - non progressive) DVD player.


I have two identical Shrek DVDs and switched between the two.


Ok...Why is there no contest?


The HTPC blew away the component input.


Everything was better (both were initially set for Normal Picture, Std. color, bright/contrast pluge calibrated)


In sum, much wider color pallette, i.e., more vibrant colors of all types, seemingly much more pop, contrast, etc. Just more film like and better.

Not a tweak, big difference.


However, no real difference in motion artifacts or other scaler issues, both seemed very good.


If I set the component input at low color temperature and dynamic picture mode I could get it closer, but it still wasn't the same. Had more contrast and pop, but the overall ballance was off.


The oddest thing was the color temp setting, the HTPC was so much more on target. It had all the reds that the component input was missing, thus the color temp setting to account for the difference.


So....how can I get this without building an HTPC, or have I now learned what everone else with an HTPC knows?


Will a never, better DVD player fix this, will a transcoder, or should I order the motherboard and start building?
 

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NOTHING WILL COME CLOSE TO A HTPC.

the vga port is MUCH better than component.

the electronics, converters, etc are better

and the htpc does not have the "chroma bug!"
 

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Try a cheap Panny RP56. It's 95% of HTPC and I love my HTPC. avdoc, another member here, brought over 2 RP56's (open-boxes for $130 at Sears and $150 @ Circuit City) to demo my NEC LT150 vs. HTPC. HTPC is better slightly but RP56 is pretty darn close in progressive mode. Certainly quieter and less hassle than HTPC. I'll probably get me one if I can find an open box item. My local Best Buy has it for $185 but should drop as no more produced. RP56 has Faroudja deinterlacing chip (cheapest player with this feature). RP62 is its replacement with RP82 supporting DVD-Audio. Check DVD hardware forum for more details. Check HTPC forum if you want to build HTPC. I'll probably run both, for fun :D
 

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I bought a Panny RP56 just to compare it to my Radeon 7500-based HTPC when I had the Panasonic 711 projector. Yes, the RP56 is good. But the HTPC was clearly superior; a whole leap up in purity of image (the absence of any kind of electronic streak, line, noise, etc.), in stability, in sharpness. I took the RP56 back to Best Buy after running it through ten or twenty test discs, switching back and forth with the HTPC. Of course, if I had a projector with a top-notch internal scaler, like the PLV-60, the RP56 would be all I needed. Most business projectors, however, benefit hugely from HTPC or outboard scalers. And only the most expensive DVD players have anything like the tweakability of HTPC.


Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Huey,


So you think it's my DVD player (again, several year old Toshiba - really first generation available with component outputs - I paid a premium).


Have you tried a different (not as good) DVD player and found the same differences I described, but against the RP56?
 

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how does interlaced via iScan through VGA port compare? I saw that and have felt it was amazing.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by dxb
So you think it's my DVD player (again, several year old Toshiba - really first generation available with component outputs - I paid a premium).
I'm not Huey, but I can say that your player is very likely not progressive scan, and with almost all business presentation projectors, they do a heck of a lot better with progressive scan inputs.


The HTPC will likely still be better, but the difference won't be nearly so dramatic. I have both, that way people in the house that want simplicity of use can use the RP-56, those that prefer HTPC can still use that.
 

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I second that :D. Most builtin video processor of PJ is suboptimal due to size and cost constraint (especially for business, light weight, cheaper class of PJ).
 

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The color gamut of component video is going to be NTSC's limit, no matter what, bar none.


The color gamut of an HTPC will get close to 16.7 million colors, and even if the original NTSC data on the DVD is nowhere near that, it still outputs more realistic colors. Especially the reds.


Remember, component outputs of DVD players is not 4:4:4, I believe its 4:2:2 or 4:2:0 even, so you're there is some compression in the color spectra, but nonetheless, the HTPC's bring all the colors out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Dada:


Explain further:


How is a DVD encoded? I.e., is a DVD encoded with RGB data such that there is some form of loss outputing component?


I had thought DVD was encoded with component such that the RGB space ourput was limited to component data. Of course, my observations would suggest otherwise.


Any links to good information on this topic?
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by dada21
The color gamut of an HTPC will get close to 16.7 million colors, and even if the original NTSC data on the DVD is nowhere near that, it still outputs more realistic colors. Especially the reds.


Remember, component outputs of DVD players is not 4:4:4, I believe its 4:2:2 or 4:2:0 even, so you're there is some compression in the color spectra, but nonetheless, the HTPC's bring all the colors out.
I am not sure what you mean. As I understand it, MPEG-2 uses a 4:2:0 storage and compression scheme so I don't see how the PC can bring out color information that simply isn't there. Most people here are using HTPCs for their internal scaling on DVD to override the projector's internal scaler.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Agreed - that is, if DVD is encoded in component format, then my HTPC can only look better for a few reasons:


(i.e., there is only a limited color gammut to begin with in the component format no matter what the capabilities of the RGB interface are over the component interface)


1 - scaler is better in HTPC - I did not see any improvement here


2 - conversion to RGB in the pure digital domain yields less 'loss' than going analog to the projector in RGB, redigitizing and then converting to RGB for the LCD panels.


I suspect that my DVD player is suboptimal and I should try a better progressive unit (panasonic 56) which may get me 95% of the way there.
 
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