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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm thinking about making the leap and spending the money I would have spent on a screen on either a Hi Def STB/receiver or a Nintendo gamecube (I know there is a big price difference but that isn't really the issue). Any opinions as to which I should go with and if I go with the STB which brand would be greatly appreciated. I live in Northern Virginia and should get some nice variety of signals. Unfortunately I rent so this will be for OTA only. Thanks,
 

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I am not sure you have a computer, but if you do, you could either go with the Hipix mentioned above, or the MyHD which cost 50 bucks less, and with some interesting features. First, the good point for Hipix is they have an "open source (not quite, the members must sign a nda) project" that has been improving the software. The MyHD is rumored to have a slightly better reception, it can playback vob files (un-encrypted dvd's, or ripped dvd's to harddrive), and playback of dvd's/recording of ntsc seems to be in the works.
 

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I have the 711 and have a RCA DTC-100, and HD is great. My best advise to you is this... Do Not any any circumstances get a Toshiba/ Hughes receiver. This was the item that was causing the Vertical banding that I had so many problems with. The minute I changed over to the RCA, the banning was gone. I don't know what it is, but for some reason the Panny pj and the Toshiba/ Hughes receivers don't do well together.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
How much would it cost to get a HTPC with a High Def Tuner card? I was considering a HTPC in the future and if HDTV can be had using a HTPC maybe I should skip the STB and go with the HTPC instead. Is there any way to get a HTPC that does pretty much only HDTV so that I can upgrade the rest of the PC later? If so how much does something like that cost? Could I buy add on hardware/software for an old laptop I have to get HDTV?
 

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I'm watching HD through my AE100 daily using an Explorer 2000HD cable set-top. I'm amazed by the picture quality that these decidedly low-res LCD panels can generate. To my eyes, film-based HD looks considerably better than DVD but it really shouldn't considering DVD basically pushes the panel resolution to the max.
 

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You are getting a little better resolution with HDTV. Since a DVD's res. is 720x480 and the AE100 has 856x480 panels, a dvd isn't quite taking advantage of all the resolution of the AE100.
 

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Fredzy, don't agree with you on this. Anamorphic dvd's does output 480 lines, but remember that this is interlaced. The projector- and hdtv is capable of 480 lines "native" progressive, or more (540p,720p,1080i).


Even if you buy a progressive dvd player, this does not really increase resolution (in the sense of adding detail).
 

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Also, many DVD's are at least slightly filtered to reduce flicker on interlaced displays -- so downrezzing HDTV even to 720x480 can still look sharper than native DVD at 720x480. Also, fine detail may be filtered out of DVD, for easier compression. Next, many DVD's have edge enhancement, which can hurt fine detail, thus decreasing resolution. Also, the bandwidth of DVD is under 10 Mbps while HDTV is almost 20 Mbps -- so more fine detail is typically preserved on HDTV than on DVD.


There are many subtle factors, including this, that contributes to HDTV-downrezzed-to-DVD looking sharper than native-DVD.
 

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Got the AE100 and film-based HD sucks. I run my Mits SR-5 into an AA transcoder and then into the VGA port on the AE100. Whenever the AE100 is in "HDTV60" or "WIDE720" mode, the black levels suffer tremendously. I had to turn the brightness up to the max setting of 31 just to get a decent picture. DVDs is another story. They look pretty good. This projector is a great budget projector that gets the job done. Some reviews have been way too kind to it.
 

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Adebar,

I am using a htpc w/hipix for OTA HD, the picture is much better than it has a right to be for a projector with this res. Noticeably better than dvds. You are doing something wrong.


I am convinced that this pj is capable of showing sub-pixel detail and I started a thread on this:
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...ighlight=pixel

It is clear that I did not find a reasonable explanation for it, but the effect is still there.

If any AE owner with a digital camera could take some pixel level pics of the PowerDvd remote parts I indicate in that post and place them here I would be very gratefull. Thank you.


As far as reviewers being too kind to this pj I agree, the black levels are sub-par. You can't beat the colors and the price/convenience though.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by EdgyLyric
You are doing something wrong.... I agree, the black levels are sub-par.
:p
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by ADebar
Got the AE100 and film-based HD sucks.

/.../

DVDs is another story. They look pretty good.
The black level does not magically get better for dvds than it does for HD. If you think that DVDs look pretty good but HD sucks you are doing something wrong. HD looks significantly better than DVDs and the black levels for both "sucks".
 

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tomes -


Please correct me if I am wrong, but as I understand it, even though each DVD frame is capable of holding 720 x 480 pixels (1.5 aspect ratio) most televisions are only 1.33 (4:3) Thus, only 640 x 480 are "available." An anamorphic DVD is compressed horizontally 33%, however and is then unsqueezed on playback, thus 640 * 1.33 = 850. The vertical remains the same, 480. Therefore the PT-AE-100 SHOULD play anamorphic DVDs at their native resolution.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by EdgyLyric



The black level does not magically get better for dvds than it does for HD. If you think that DVDs look pretty good but HD sucks you are doing something wrong. HD looks significantly better than DVDs and the black levels for both "sucks".
much you have to learn, my young padawan.
 

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I have a DST3000 and a 711XU. The HDTV signal is simply stunning. I have yet to have a person in here that didn't just stare amazed when HDNet is playing a baseball game...
 

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Pay no attention to ADebar... the guy's a close-minded, trollish ingrate. Do a search on all of his posts and you'll see for yourselves...


Ken
 

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fredzy - i agree on the aspect ratio calculation you are referencing, but I do believe that you will find that when decoding a dvd stream, the output is inherently 60hz, meaning that only half of the lines are available in each 'frame'. This is the interlacing part, which is necessary for making it possible to watch dvd on a regular ntsc tv. Progressive dvd-players do exist, however what they do is taking to interlaced frames and creating a 'whole' frame. I am not being quite accurate in explaining this, but this is the simplified version. I have to admit that I do not remember the whole truth about the advanced version of the story :)
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by fredzy
tomes -


Please correct me if I am wrong, but as I understand it, even though each DVD frame is capable of holding 720 x 480 pixels (1.5 aspect ratio) most televisions are only 1.33 (4:3) Thus, only 640 x 480 are "available." An anamorphic DVD is compressed horizontally 33%, however and is then unsqueezed on playback, thus 640 * 1.33 = 850. The vertical remains the same, 480. Therefore the PT-AE-100 SHOULD play anamorphic DVDs at their native resolution.
DVD and standard definition digital TV use non-square (skinny) pixels. That's how you get 720x480 pixels in a 4:3 frame. Digital PAL uses non-square fat pixels to get 720x576 in a 4:3 frame.


NTSC CCIR-601 non-square pixels are 8:9.


Square pixels @ NTSC will give you 640x480, but you can fit a bit more horizontal bandwidth in a 6MHz carrier than that.


If you kept the pixels the same aspect ratio but did an anamorphic unsqueeze, you would end up with 960x480 pixels, but because the AE100 uses wider (square instead of skinny) pixels you only get 858.


Non-square pixels are a pain in the ass for graphics rendering which is why VGA is 640x480 (and 800x600, 1024x728). The only non-square computer resolution in common use is 1280x1024 and rendering is still done assuming square pixels so circles look squished.


-M
 
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