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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i've been using composite video cables for a while, and today i bought an s-video cable because i've heard such great things about it.. i hooked it up to my dvd player and noticed a small difference in picture quality, but not as much as i expected.. :mad: so.. does s-video only make a big difference w/ HDTV's or just regular tv's also.. dont get me wrong, there was a difference, i think.. hehe.. also, would s-video make a difference w/ the sat. reciever since it come's in through coxial cable. i couldnt notice -any- difference.. but what do i know :confused: ..


any help would be appreciated.. thx :)
 

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I think you pretty well hit the nail on the head. "S" IS better! But it's not always dramatically so.


One of the best ways to tell the improvement is to watch a picture that has lots of closely spaced lines (like plaid neckties, clothing etc.) On a regular composite connection, you'll often notice a rainbow effect called moire. Once you notice it, it can be very distracting. An "S" connection, since the color and black and white are separate from each other, does not suffer from moire. (If you can track it down, watch the scene from the 1st Austin Powers where Mr. Powers is on his jet trying to score with Miss Kensington. Powers's shirt is a moire fest on composite. On S-Video, it just shows up as a "busy" shirt.)
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
ok, thanks..


just another quick question.. my TV doesnt have a digital comb filter, so wouldn't s-video make a dramatic difference from composite?
 

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The NTSC standard (TV signal) is composed of two signals, one that is black and white (luminance) and one that is colour (chrominence).


The colour signal is blurry and not well defined (it's job is to put color to the picture.


The B&W signal adds the dimension and sharpness to the picture.


the composite cable transmits one image that is created from the merger of the two images. So the two signals need to be combined to be transmitted by the composite cable and then they need to be separated to be used by the TV


the s-video cable (AKA Y/C) is composed of two wires that transmit an image, one that transmits the B&W and one that transmits the colour. Since there are two cables, it can transmit more information, and it does not need to drop anything it receives. (that is why if one of the wires or connectors is faulty on an S-video cable you might get a black and white image- happened to me)
 

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Quote:
... my TV doesnt have a digital comb filter, so wouldn't s-video make a dramatic difference from composite?
This is usually correct. A lower quality comb filter (glass, 1-line, 2-line) tends to introduce artifacts into the displayed image. If you look at the edges of lines you should see dot crawl with composite cables. Dot crawl will make a diagonal line look like a set of stairs or a checkerboard with dancing squares. This should be very obvious on text displayed on the screen like during the news. The S-video connection should eliminate the dot crawl and also give you a brighter picture.


There are many reasons why it wouldn't be a dramatic difference but usually it's related to one's expectation going in, not knowing what to look for, or looking for it on a moving picture. On a moving picture, the edge detail isn't as obvious. The easiest way to do a comparison is to use the S-video cable for a week, then switch back to the composite. Once your eyes have gotten used to the new picture, it's easier to see the difference when you change back. If you're looking for immediate proof, then again, look at the text on a screen or the boundaries of contrasting colors. You'll see that checkerboard pattern called dot-crawl pretty easily.
 

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Another consideration is the video source you are using. For example, over-the-air analog TV broadcasts use a composite video signal to modulate the TV transmitter, the best you can do at the TV receiver is to reconstruct a facsimilie of the original composite video signal.


Regular VHS VCRs use composite video, and S-VHS keeps the luminance and chrominance information seperate. But if the source material you are timeshifting is the over-the-air broadcast, the difference in quality between your S-VHS and regular VHS is minimal, because video quality was constrained by the over-the-air broadcast.


DVDs and HDTV receivers and DSS boxes are clearly cases where S-video would have advantages. However, if as you say the visible difference between the S-video and composite video is relatively small, that's a good thing - it indicates you have a good quality comb filter in your TV.


In my experience, the most visible differences between S-video and Composite video are in fine detail - like fine print in screen credits, for example.


Gary
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
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Originally posted by Gary McCoy
However, if as you say the visible difference between the S-video and composite video is relatively small, that's a good thing - it indicates you have a good quality comb filter in your TV.
i would like to think so, but its an Apex TV, hehe ($199 for 27").. so i dunno what to think? maybe the s-video isnt really s-video.. lol
 

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What really makes a hue difference is hooking up a DVD player via component, whether the tv is HD or NTSC.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by dylix
i would like to think so, but its an Apex TV, hehe ($199 for 27").. so i dunno what to think? maybe the s-video isnt really s-video.. lol
That is one reason why you are not seeing a big difference in quality, you have a small(used to be considered big) TV. When you go to larger TV's it becomes more evident.
 

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I notice a slight difference on my 32" TV between componsite and svideo. I noice a bigger difference on my moms 48". I notice an even bigger difference going from svideo to component on my moms tv.
 

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I notice moire even with "S vid" when viewing D* from either DTC 100 or DirecTivo on a Pioneer Elite 510.


None when viewing DVD over component or HD thru the 15 pin VGA.


Another thing I notice is when viewing white movie credits on black background is little hints of red/wht/ blue color in the white.


Not sure what the problem is there.


Using Better Cables Silver Serpent S Vid cables


Bruce
 
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