AVS Forum banner

Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 7 of 7 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I wanted to provide this information to the forum in return for helpful info I've gotten by lurking on the forums here. I originally found these forums seeking the very information I'm providing now.


I have the 42" Daewoo flat panel (DP42SM), which I bought about 3 weeks ago. The picture from a progressive DVD player and with the HD signal at the store was very nice (It's nice at home, also). I had read about the poor de-interlacing on Cable and VHS signals that some of the flat panels provided but was unable to look at an ordinary signal in the showroom because all the local stores claimed that they don't get ordinary cable and couldn't provide the signal. I can see why they don't do it; They don't want customers to be discouraged by the lousy picture.


In my particular case the Daewoo was certainly disappointing on Cox digital cable and with VHS signals. Not all channels were poor but in general it was pretty ugly. The best picture of course is provided when you view these signals in their native (4:3) aspect ratio. The problem with this is that you then risk burn-in from the black bars on the side. I was thinking about keeping the old 32" set in the den side by side with the flat panel just to watch interlaced signals. This would crowd the den badly but I wasn't sure what else to do.


I started wondering if an external line-doubler would help, and that's what brought me here. It seems to be a common problem but I didn't find any clear cut posts on how to address it. I ended up taking a chance and bought a used DVDO Iscan Pro on ebay for $300.


The good news: It works! The de-interlaced picture on most cable channels is excellent. In the case of most movies it looks almost as clean and pretty as a progressive DVD signal. Instead of being inferior to the interlaced TV it is actually superior. I'm very pleased with the picture quality.


There are a couple of flies in the ointment. One is that on at least one station (TNT) the Iscan is unable to detect the need for 3:2 pulldown, and so doesn't kick in to film mode. I don't know why it doesn't on this one channel but it doesn't. The result is that there are tiny "jumps" in the motion for film content. I watched the same channel on an analog TV just to be sure and the jumps were not evident so they were not part of the broadcast. Another problem is that the Daewoo TV will give you a "no signal" screen when there is a weak or momentary signal loss. This sometimes happens when transitioning from a commercial back to a movie, and you get that momentary black screen as a result. It also will do it every now and then for no apparent reason when watching a VHS tape (could this be a fault with my particular Iscan unit?). It's a little annoying, but far less so than the poor picture from the onboard de-interlacer.


I watch mostly in the 4:3 aspect ratio, because this still gives easily the highest quality picture. The unit puts up gray bars on the sides, and also creeps the 4:3 picture almost imperceptably back and forth so that there is no chance of a single clean line to establish a burn-in point. The gray bars do take some getting used to, but I've watched it for several hours straight and seen no sign of the lingering bar images when I go to a black screen.


Another minor point. I don't yet have a dedicated audio receiver so I use the audio output from the TV directly to a pair of speakers. Since both cable and VCR now go to the Iscan and therefore to a single connection on the display (the VGA port), you have to be sure that when you switch the video you also switch the audio which accompanies the video signal to the VGA port, or you'll have cable TV sound when you're trying to watch a VHS tape.


I wanted to provide this information for people who might have the same issue that I did when watching cable and VHS on their flat-panel TVs. If anyone has specific questions about how these two items perform (Daewoo with the Iscan Pro) just ask and I'll try to provide an answer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
307 Posts
Thanks for sharing your experience with the DVDO scaler. Yesterday, I visited a local Good Guys store to take another look at the Sharp 37" LCD which I've been considering. Not unlike your experience, they did not have a cable feed, but after some haggling and looking for remotes, etc., they were able to show me OTA SD channels through a rooftop antenna connected to a Hughes DirecTV receiver. The image quality was abysmal, with muted colors and complete lack of definition in any area darker than neutral gray. Since I'm planning to make this the "official" TV in the den as well, PQ for SD programming is a real concern. Perhaps I'll wait for the new iScan HD, which would be an ideal complement to the Sharp LCD.


Spaeking of which, does anyone know a dealership in the Peninsula/South Bay (SF Bay Area) where I can demo a Sharp LCD through a DVDO video processor? Magnolia doesn't seem to carry the Sharp, and neither does Century Stereo at Saratoga. Best Buy, GG, and CC don't carry scalers as far as I can tell.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
590 Posts
I often wondered how an external processor might help alleviate the SD problems that seem to plague flat panel displays---thanks for the report!


Robin
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,505 Posts
I am hoping that a true technology guy member here on the forum will help me understand something. And please don't anyone think I am disrespecting their sets or purchases of those sets by this question.


Does the IScan help in this case because the sets in question lack a quality internal scaler? In a hypothetical world, I have a hard time imagining a $800 line doubler will help the SD PQ on a $8000 P50 fujitsu plasma.


Just wondering at the application design of this level of scaler.


Thanks,


E. J.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
23 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
E J


I suspect the internal line-doublers on such a set would be far better than that on the set that I've got. The Daewoo constitutes the low end of the 42" plasma displays, at least in price. So I would guess the answer to your question would be that it helps because the line-doubler on my set is inferior. I don't think it would improve a typical $5000 display much, but I could be wrong. All I know is it was clearly better for mine.


BTW, the Iscan Pro is $395 brand new from certain dealers on the web, not $800. There are at least two more updated Iscan models that are sure to be superior to it in most respects. They are more likely to be priced in the $800 range.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
105 Posts
Thank you Uncle for the very interesting post. I am continuing my endless research on plasma and am often frustrated by not being able to see over the air signals on store displays. My situation is pretty specific. I have a Linn Classik Movie system that only outputs 480i and the only TV I watch is through Comcast basic NTSC cable. Of course I could replace the Linn system but don't want to as I really like the two channel performance for music.


You post encouraged me to continue a little research on outboard line doubling and scaling in general. A nice overview and review of one of the iScan products can be found here:

http://www.audiorevolution.com/equip/iscanpro/
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
121 Posts
Quote:
Originally posted by uncle_bent
I watch mostly in the 4:3 aspect ratio, because this still gives easily the highest quality picture. The unit puts up gray bars on the sides, and also creeps the 4:3 picture almost imperceptably back and forth so that there is no chance of a single clean line to establish a burn-in point. The gray bars do take some getting used to, but I've watched it for several hours straight and seen no sign of the lingering bar images when I go to a black screen.
Im assuming you connect from the Iscan pro 15-pin out to the daewoo's 15-pin input, correct?

If so, do the strecth modes still work, or are you limited to only the 16:9 and normal aspect ratios?
 
1 - 7 of 7 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top