It could be relevant, but not in all cases. For example, if you have a Panasonic HDTV monitor that accepts 720p, the Panasonic stb has 720p output. There are a few other examples too, but for the most part it's a preference as opposed to a must.
I agree with Ken. The answer is a definite MAYBE. When the RCA STB first came out, it was basically proprietary to the RCA TV's. It had a non-standard scan rate, and a VGA output. Eventually a VGA to Component adapter was created. This still left the scan rate issue. Some people were able to make Service mode adjustment sets to account for this. Then RCA came up with a firmware upgrade which made it more compatible with other sets.
I believe the early Mitsubishi's had a proprietary connection and therefore have some issues. As Ken pointed out the Panasonic TV does 720p, therefore an STB that does 720p is a good idea.
Since many of the new boxes are essentially the same box, being made by the same company (Hughes), mixing and matching doesn't really matter if you buy the Toshiba, Mitsubishi or Hughes STB.
As a generality, one is often better off to be using equipment from the same manufacturer "intended" for use together. Then, when things go wrong, one doesn't get into the multi-vendor finger pointing game.
We have been accustomed to connecting any kinds of AV equipment and to having them basically work. Doesn't play yet in the world of HDTV.
I bought a Sony XBR hi-def monitor over 9 months ago and was very tempted to purchase either the RCA or some other vendor's STB mainly because Sony had not yet released the HD-100. I'm glad I waited because the HD-100 and its remote are truly made to work with Sony monitors. The Variable 3 output mode alone makes the STB virtually a must for anyone with an XBR. Also, the remote with this unit is outstanding, allowing me to "retire" the remotes for the XBR, and for the VCR, DVD player and receiver (which are non-Sony!). The only feature NOT on the HD-100 remote which I would have liked is the XBR PIP feature. Other than that, this was a match worth waiting for.
I'm considering the Mitsubishi WS-55907 and the salesperson at Good Guys strongly recommended purchasing the Mitsubishi SR-HD400 rather than the Sony HD satellite receiver (I currently have a regular Sony sat receiver) because of the integration of both components. He said that they work together so that you never have to manually change inputs and that everything just works together better.
I currently have a Mitsubishi TV and S-VHS VCR and there is some integration between these two components that makes life a little easier. Pressing "Play" on either remote will automatically turn on both the TV and VCR, and switch the TV to the correct input.
I can attest to the compatibility between the Sony RPTV's and the HD100. The HD100 works very well with my KP-61HS10 and was obviously designed to do just that.
If you are considering the Sony HD100, I would wait until Sony gets the bugs out before buying. It has some definite problems, all of which I'm sure will be resolved, but I would be hard pressed to buy one before they are. The Sony has some very nice features, IMHO one of the best guide/surf indexes and a very good picture quality. It also has a variable mode on the component outs that detects the source signal and outputs 480i or 1080i accordingly.
When the bugs are resolved, I think it will be one of the nicest STB's on the market.
thanks for all the replies.. i also read in this month's sound & vision that the sony only has 1 HDTV input (hig bandwidth), so if you have HDTV and progressive scan you need a switcher. but a close look at the mitsu web site shows they, too, only have 1 HDTV input.. shoot!
do any sets have 2, one for HDTV and one for progressive scan?
The new Sony models coming out later this year have 2 component inputs. You can also use a AVR that does component switching. This was my choice since it allows me to select any of the input devices and switch the audio and video with the push of 1 button.
Regarding mixing & matching various brands, I don't really like it when the companies destroy standards by making their systems work better together than mixed brand combinations. Standard interfaces should allow different brands of equipment to work together seamlessly.
I have a 1.5 year-old Mits VS-50805 RPTV and a Mits HD-5 STB. The Mits/Mits thing is convenient because it automagically switches the TV from Input-2 to DTV when you switch the HD-5 from s-video (480i) to component (1080i) output. Unfortunately, this means I need TWO inputs to use this STB because I think the 480i content from DirecTV, cable, etc. look LOUSY when converted to 1080i and 16x9AR (I'm keeping my Sony A55 DirecTV receiver).
I'm returning the Mits HD-5 and waiting for the new Zenith STB because I think I heard it will output either 480i or 1080i on the component outputs.
"The VCR will bankrupt the movie undustry!" -- MPAA
My Denon 3801 does a great job on HDTV. So does the Denon 4800 & 5800.
Just about every major brand of AVR that has component switching will handle todays HDTV bandwidth.
Do some research on this forum and some others and you will find that there are plenty of reasonably priced mid-range AVR's that do well with all aspects of HT. The one you chose will most likely be a matter of personal taste as far as which features are important to you.
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