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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
First of all I have a Hitachi 65SWX20B HDTV Projection Television that has a DVI input. I'm assuming that I can connect that to my computer since it's video card (Gainward Geforce4 4600) has the DVI output on it.


My questions are:


1. Will the picture look as good as the one coming from my Panasonic XP50 DVD player?


2. What is the maximum length DVI cable that they make?



I'm interested in doing this because my Panasonic XP50 has problems with some of the disks that I've make with my Pioneer DVD burner.
 

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I'm not the expert, but I'll try to give you some basic answers...


1) Yes, it will look as good or better than the XP50. Even if that DVD player uses the FLI2200 (I don't remember if it does), a good software DVD decoder can best it. Prepare for some tweaking, though, to get the absolute best picture. If you have a fast processor (AthlonXP 2200+ or P42.4+) you can even use a filter called ffdshow to do some amazing sharpening of the picture. Do a search for dvd software programs, and you'll find tons of info. I will be using TheaterTek, which seems to offer the best out of the box performance, and a nice software front end. The main advantage is the use of DVI to keep a clean signal. If you Hitachi does a digital to analog conversion on the signal anyway, you may not notice as much as a change than you would using a digital set like a Samsung DLP.


2) DVI can be longer than most other cables, I have seen people using 25 feet or so. How long a run do you want?


Good luck!

RDaneel
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The XP 50 does look really good but it has problems with some of the DVD that I've made. For $300 you would think that it would play anything that I put in it. I am no thinking of returning the Panasonic and building a PC instead.
 

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I have read in a previous that some DVI connections on TVs donnot support computer connection. Anyway they only support PC if they clearly state it in their manual as there are different DVI timing connections. If they do this may also apply for certain resolutions!!! All cables under 5 meter give good quality but for more than 5 meter you want the expensive ones AND of course there is a limit beyound which you want a DVI amplifier... Check at Cablewholesale.com under DVI. The picture quality with DVI is MUCH BETTER than any analog connection PROVIDED THAT : 1. The signal stays digital all the way down to the Projector/TV panel. 2. You do 1:1 mapping to the panel's resolution otherwise the internal scaler resumes control of the signal..... Also even if your TV accepts DVI don't be sure that your Geforce can drive through DVI the panel (Try a search for Geforce and DVI in the forum..) I use an ATI AIW 8500 DVI with a HS 10 LCD in the panel's native resolution of 1368*768 56 Hz. The picture is clean!!!! (WinDVD platinum)
 

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Machine, I have the Hitachi 57SWX20B connected to my Radeon 9000 via a 3 metre (about 9 feet) DVI and can offer the following info:


- The Hitachi's most definitely accept DVI from the PC, even though the manual warns against this.


- I HAVE NOT seen any better DVD performance compared to my cheapo non-prog scan Pioneer 525 DVD player hooked up via S-video!! (however this player did get good reviews when I got it). After months and months of tickering with Powerstrip settings (recommended as the best settings for DVD viewing by other users here) and numerous DVD players (recommended as the best players by other users here) I have not been able to match the picture quality of my Pioneer DVD player. If you've seen some of the reviews on our TV's you'll notice that they've been given very good praise for the scalers, and in fact state that a progressive scan player isn't even necessary for them to look better.


- I have not tried any of the filters from ffdshow that RDaneel mentions, but with them I might be able to meet (not necessarily exceed) the picture quality I'm getting from my set-top player.


- I was annoyed with the odd stutters you'll get, and the amount of noise coming from the PC while watching a DVD. My Pioneer player never stuttered except on a bad or damaged disc.


- From the above you've probably guessed I no longer use my PC for watching DVD's.


- This may be slightly off topic but ... Do I have a thing against using my PC as part of my Home Theater? Absolutely not. I started out trying to get my rig working so I could avoid buying a progressive scan DVD player, however in the process I've given up on that and instead fell in love with using it for other purposes:

** Surfing the web, doing email, writing memos, working on spreadsheets, doing tax returns, etc all the while watching something in the little PIP box (with a 540p input you'll activate the HD resolutions so you'll be able to get the floating PIP box which can be moved to any of the 4 corners of your screen).

** playing games

** listening to downloaded music via 5.1 surround from my PC, so I'm able to check out the latest releases (or revisit some of the oldies I never bought on CD, or worse don't have the heart to plop on the LP and listen to the click and pop). I picked up a SB Audigy 2.

** edit personal DV from my camcorder. In your case you could watch your home made DVD's from your PC without even burning them first to DVD (if you got the HD space).


Search my name on this site for other tidbits on using DVI with my Hitachi.


Scott
 

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Scott, I have to disagree with you big time. I also have a Hitachi 57swx20b, and a Radeon 9700 pro. I use a DVI cable for my connection, and have Zoom player setup with FFDShow, and NVDVD decoder. I used standard configurations you se eon this forum, and the quality is amazing compared with a set top DVD. You really have to take the time to get everything working, but it is worth it in the end. I also use Powerstrip and run at 1920x540, which then gets upconverted automatically to 1080i. It looks unreal. I had a guy in here that works for a local electronics store, and said they would pay big time to have that setup to demo their in store TVs.

Trust me, if you have some technical background and can get everything working, its well worthwhile.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I have mine running at 1280x720p and it looks fantastic. When viewing the desktop the icon names are just slightly blurred but not much. The picture is very sharp and I have no stuttering. I also have the SB Audigy Platunum EX and the sound quality is awesome.
 

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Machine,

I used to run mine at 720p, but It is too blurry, I got a great resolution for you to try. Try 880x496, I have virtually no overscan, and a super clean picture. Switch to 1920x540 when watching movies, but if you use resize filters with ffdshow, I cant tell a difference, and I am now leaving it at 880x496. (Your TV will upscale it to 1080i)

Give it a try and tell me what you think.
 

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Scott,


How are you doing? I agree with Ben on this. Its come up in other threads before and I am telling you. If you see no difference between the HTPC and the DVDplayer somehting is wrong. I know you have tried the right resolutions and the hardware seems fine but the difference between an HTPC and a standalone DVD player should be night and day.



Machine,


If you are using 1280x720p most likely the TVs built in scalers are kicking in and degrading the PQ. Try 540p for 1:1 pixel mapping.


Cheers,
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Should I use 960 or 840 X 540p?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
960x540p does look pretty darn good. I do loose some of my picture on the right side. Will try the other resolutions tonight.


The only complaint is that on the 65" Hitachi on that low of a resolution I can almost see the horizontal lines of resolution. I will have to watch a couple more movies to decide wheather I like it better or not. It is a very sharp picture though. :cool:
 

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Don't forget to try 880x496, I have the exat same TV as you, just in the 57 inch model, and it is by far the best results I have seen. No overscan is nice when using the TV as your PC Monitor. Let us know!

Thanks
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I've only tried 540p and 720p because those are the only resolutions that my manual said would work besides 1080i.
 

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Machine,


You can try any resolution as long as they have 540p and 720p timings. Check out Karnis' guide for details.


Remember to try 1440x540p.


Ben: I can't wait to go home and try that resolution for the desktop.


Cheers,
 

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Have you tried 1940x540? It looks real nice, but I have found that by using the resize filters with FFDShow, there isnt much difference between 1940x540 and the one I am using now.
 

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I'm now using the ATi DVI-HDTV adapter w/ Radeon 9500pro connected to my Mits and playing back DVDs at 1920x1080i (actually, overscan corrected to 1920x960i with TheaterTek), still in SW mode with ffdshow/unsharp mask=18, and the results are stunning. The extra vertical resolution virtually eliminates aliasing on diagonal and curved objects. I happened to do an A/B comparison with SHREK on HBO and it paled in comparison to my HTPC. Colors were darker, cooler, and had less shadow detail. The TT image @960i was sharper, more detailed and had more accurate color fidelity. However, it also had a bit more ringing around some edges and compression artifacts then the HD version. That being said, I found the HTPC version more pleasurable to watch. You must use MV-defeating SW to get DVD playback >480p. I use DVD Region Free from www.dvdidle.com.

I also get an 856x480p for desktop work, 640x480p, 720x480p and 1776x1000i for fullscreen playback with other apps. All are running with Powerstrip 540p timings.


Anything you can do to increase the vertical resolution for DVD playback you should do. It makes a much bigger difference than increasing the horizontal resolution.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Everything is tall and skinny at 1940x540p. :confused:
 
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