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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everybody - I'm a deaf individual and rely heavily on close captioning.


I'm starting to wonder if using HDMI somehow disables the close captioning feature.


A bunch of us could not get the Pansonic 50u to display captioning with movies in a chain store so I didn't get it. I don't know that unit was hooked up and didn't think it mattered.


I ended up picking up two LCD's to compare side by side at home - A 37" Sharp Aquos (LC40C37U) and a 42" Sceptre (X42GV-NAGA). I've been using the 37" Aquos for the past week with my older Sony DVD player and regular analog TV with no captioning issues.


The Sceptre recently arrived and I went off to pick up two Sony HDMI dvd players (DVP-NS71HP) today so I could directly compare both displays side by side.


I hooked up the Aquos via HDMI, popped in a LOTR movie and... NO CAPTIONS! I tried a few other discs as well - nada. Captions show up fine when I switch the TV over to my old Sony dvd player at 480p hooked up via compoent inputs.


Right now I'm in the process of hooking up the new 42" Sceptre but I have a sinking feeling that I'm going to run into the same problem.


What's going on, and what can I do?


-Blesum
 

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Be aware you're probably more experienced in this area than most people here. I thought CC is generally for only broadcast systems -- don't you use subtitles in DVD's? CC information is encoded into the video of broadcast television, I'm not sure if this is the same on DVD's, but I guess it is if it's what you were using before. It is very possible that an upconverting player will lose this information when it upconverts a 480i signal into 1080i/720p. Did you try the new dvd player without upconverting enabled?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Sure enough - the Sceptre displayed captions while watching analog TV, but when we played a dvd via HDMI - No more captions...
I'm starting to think that this is not going to be a step forward for me, but a step backwards that I don't want to take.


-Blesum
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for chiming in Falser - I'll root through the manuals some and see about disabling the upconverting. Wouldn't that hurt the quality some and defeat the purpose of my getting these displays/dvd players though?


Captions are typically encoded into regular (mainstream popular movies) - Subtitles generally suck compared to closed captions - for example in an action movie using subtitles, I'll be wondering why everybody is diving to the ground (shots being fired offscreen), why people are reacting (screams somewhere, door opening or closing, clock ticking, phone ringing, explosions in the distance, etc). That's why I sneer at subtitles and go for captions every time out. Captions relay that kind of vital information to me. Once in a while, a movie will not have captions but say "Subtitles for the Hearing Imparied" - that means the subtitles also include this vital information but it's not common.


-Blesum
 

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Ah, I gotcha. I pointed out the upconverting, because I think I remember that CC data is encoded into a certain unused area of interlaced video -- meaning it may only be available when watching an interlaced signal, or a DVD player that properly handles the conversion from 480i to 480p. The FCC laws regarding CC are much more strict for broadcast signals, whereas for DVD players, and definitely for ones that do upconverting and so on, may not be manditory and not handle this stuff well.
 

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Blesum


Much of the time the receiver determines if the closed caption will be readable. For example the Sony HD 200 does CC on SD very well while in HD it garbles CBS and NBC and correctly shows ABC and Fox. Not much can be done about this.
 

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I cant say I know detaisl of CC, but you could try to use a player that outputs 480i over HDMI. Maybe that way the video is undisturbed so CC information can get to the TV, while at the same time the signal stays digital. You can rely on the internal scaler of the TV, it shouldnt be too far behind the scaler in the DVD player. This is just a geuss though.
 

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Discussion Starter #8

Quote:
Originally Posted by necrolop /forum/post/0


I cant say I know detaisl of CC, but you could try to use a player that outputs 480i over HDMI. Maybe that way the video is undisturbed so CC information can get to the TV, while at the same time the signal stays digital. You can rely on the internal scaler of the TV, it shouldnt be too far behind the scaler in the DVD player. This is just a geuss though.


If I used a player that outputs 480i over HDMI, doesn't it stand to reason that I would no longer be viewing 720p/1080i on the display, and down the line, not be able to view 1080p, defeating the whole point of getting these cutting edge LCD's?


Wouldn't I be better off returning everything and buying a older non-HDMI TV?


Or does the monitor somehow take the 480i signal and converts it back to 1080i?


Today I'm going to see what happens with the captioning when the players are hooked up via compoent cables.


-Blesum
 

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Does the manual say anything about how to use close captioning? I tend to think there is a way that you are not considering. Most TV's (all Sharp's and I'm sure others as well) allow you to select where the audio goes. It's selectable at the source (STB or DVR) and it's selectable at the display. If you run the audio via RCA output instead of through HDMI, I'll bet it would work.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Mike,


The Sceptre manual is very lacking in captioning information and troubleshooting or different ways to hook things up for captioning is not discussed anywhere in it. The Sony DVD player manual says nothing on this subject. The Sharp manual is more detailed, but only addresses how to use it with watching regular TV and VHS tapes.


I hooked up the compoent to the Sceptre where it then displayed 480p and still no captions. I then hooked it up to the Aquos where it also displayed 480p and still no captions.


I then rehooked my old sony DVD player to the Aquos like it has been all week. 480i and captions worked. I then hooked that up to the Sceptre and there's no captioning.


Fustrating.


-Blesum
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Found the DVD output options. Only three available - 1080i, 720p, 480p. Tried all of them on the Aquos and NO captioning got through.


I'm 95% sure I will be returning the 1080p Sceptre and 70% sure I will be returning the720p Aquos.


Probably look for a old, cheap Sony XBR, use it at 480i and write off the whole future HDDVD/BluRay/LCD/Plasma thing until they all sort themselves out.


Will check this thread throughout the day for any other possible solutions before starting to pack things up to be returned.


-Blesum
 

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Blesum, why did they start offering CC? I had thought it had been legally mandated (maybe by the ADA?) If so, then wouldn't the manufacturers have a legal responsibility to make CC available? Have you tried contacting Scepter and Sharp Customer Service to see if they can help?
 

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Since using the Aquos and your old dvd player at 480i worked, that's what I'd keep. You'd be missing out on the fancy HDMI cables, but in reality I bet the TV's internal scaler does a pretty good job in scaling up the images. I doubt there is that much improvement when using the HDMI dvd player. And this way you're set up for an HDDVD or BluRay player down the road (hopefully they have CC worked out a little better).
 

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Discussion Starter #14

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vashti /forum/post/0


Blesum, why did they start offering CC? I had thought it had been legally mandated (maybe by the ADA?) If so, then wouldn't the manufacturers have a legal responsibility to make CC available? Have you tried contacting Scepter and Sharp Customer Service to see if they can help?

Going from memory here... CC is required by law on all 27 inch or bigger TVs made after 1992. From what I understand, these plasmas/LCD's are techincally TVs so they are not required to have CC. However, both of these models have it for watching regular TV which is nice.


I'll try calling up Sharp and/or Sceptre but corporations usually have an automated system that requires navigating through before getting to an actual customer rep - very difficult to do when you have to do it through a painfully slow relaying service (remember I'm deaf) - At the end of each menu option on the phone, they hang up, type out what was said, ask if I want to select any of the options, I tell them I want... for example number 3. They redial, go through the whole process again, press 3, then they get another menu to choose from... On and on... Good thing I have the day off from work today.



-Blesum
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blesum /forum/post/0


Going from memory here... CC is required by law on all 27 inch or bigger TVs made after 1992. From what I understand, these plasmas/LCD's are techincally TVs so they are not required to have CC. However, both of these models have it for watching regular TV which is nice.


I'll try calling up Sharp and/or Sceptre but corporations usually have an automated system that requires navigating through before getting to an actual customer rep - very difficult to do when you have to do it through a painfully slow relaying service (remember I'm deaf) - At the end of each menu option on the phone, they hang up, type out what was said, ask if I want to select any of the options, I tell them I want... for example number 3. They redial, go through the whole process again, press 3, then they get another menu to choose from... On and on... Good thing I have the day off from work today.

AFAIK there is no standard to transmit CC information over 720p/1080i interconnects and that is why you are not seeing CC information.


The CC transmission AFAIK is just for NTSC compatible signals and is sent over line21 VBI vertical blanking interval. The equivalent for this doesn't exist for 720p/1080i interconnects.


By interconnect I mean the connection between your source (DVD player, HD tuner, STB, etc.) and your display. Interconnects are normally component or HDMI/DVI.


The solution for this for was to encode the CC information into the mpg stream itself but this has the side effect that only the device that decodes the mpg (in your case the DVD player or HD tuner) has access to the CC information. Once the mpg is decoded and then needs to be transmitted to the display using component or HDMI/DVI there is no way to transmit it (ie there is no standard for the CC transmission over component/HDMI/DVI) Thus if there is CC information the source device needs to overlay that CC info on the picture prior to transmitting to the display over the interconnect.


In the case of the upconverting DVD player, if the CC information exists, the DVD player will need to be responsible for overlaying the CC info if you want to set the output of the player to 720p/1080i.


If your TV has a builtin ATSC/QAM tuner, then it is the one doing the decoding of the mpg so it will have access to the CC info and should have the ability to display in that case.


In short, I don't think there is anything broken with your displays, they are functioning as designed. I can see how it would be inconvenient and hard to understand. There are so many moving parts with AV these days it takes a rocket scientist to understand why things don't work as expected.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Godfreyb, I've got some bad news for ya... Yer screwed as well.


Both displays are going back.


Sceptre's customer service led to an answering machine saying to leave a number for them to call ya back at.


Sharp's was a bit better. Took only 10 minutes to get to a live person.


Here's what the rep said:

u are not going to be able to get the close captioning at 720p ga


Basically, I'm (we're) SOL.


When I pressed for more information:


just one moment pls i m gonna put u on hd thk u

(HOLDING) (hd) (hd) (hd) (hd) (hd) (hd) (hd) (hd)

(hd) (hd) (hd)thk u for holding i m sorry about the

delay the only info regarding the close caption and

the 480 i signal for this television that i have is that

that s what it will display it doesn t do 720p or 1080i ga



Wait, are you saying that this TV won't display

720p or that it won't display captions at 720p q ga


it won t display captions at 720p from a dvd player

the only u can t upgrade the signal it s only going to

display the signal that is receiving from the dvd

player it won t upconvert it ga



why not, and how is sharp going to address this

shortcoming in the future q ga


i have no idea how sharp is planning on adjusting it

and the television is not made to upconvert ga


what do you suggest I do q ga


if you

re able to view it in the 480i format that s really the

only option that u have right now ga


even though I spent over two grand to have 720p

quality q ga


the tv won t display it from a dvd like that i m sorry it

s going to be an inconvenience for u but the tv won t

do what you re wanting it to do

i m sorry that that s we can t accommodate what

you re wanting the application that u want to have ga




I talked some more and asked if somebody at Sharp could contact me if they ever made a TV/DVD player set up that would allow for captions to come across. She instead suggested that I call back periodcally and check with them. I don't think I'm going to bother, but if anybody wants to pose as me, it'll go faster with my customer number - 3 1 3 4 5 1 5 so they can pull up the file about this and understand what you're trying to find out/ask.


Good riddance, future. Back to the stone age I go.



-Blesum
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Dear Rocket Scientist (Sfhub),


The Sceptre box has a ATSC port (screw-in, like with cable) in the back, so I assume it has this tuner. How do I get this TV to display 720p with captions from a DVD player? You make it sound like it's possible. Or is it just hopeless?


-Blesum
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blesum /forum/post/0


Dear Rocket Scientist (Sfhub),


The Sceptre box has a ATSC port (screw-in, like with cable) in the back, so I assume it has this tuner. How do I get this TV to display 720p with captions from a DVD player? You make it sound like it's possible. Or is it just hopeless?

I probably could have been clearer then. I didn't intend to give the impression you could get your DVD player to output over the ATSC port and get CC in that way.


When I said ATSC/QAM tuner, I mean if your TV is tuning in OTA HDTV using ATSC tuner or if it was tuning in HD channels from your cable company using the QAM tuner, then your TV is the one decoding the mpg and thus has access to the CC info and can display it.


In the case of your DVD player, the DVD player decodes the mpg and at that point has access to the CC info (if present). If the DVD player does not do something with the CC info (as in overlay it on the picture it sends out) then the CC info is lost (assuming 720p/1080i output from the DVD player) because there is no way (as in no standard) to transmit that info to the TV so that it can display the CC info.


Basically I'm saying investigate whether the upconverting DVD player has the ability to display the CC info in the picture it sends out and if not complain to them. Any TV you buy will have the same problem of not being able to display CC info for 720p/1080i signals it receives over the component or HDMI input ports.
 

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Ok, I tested on my setup. Like he said Deinterlacing destroys the CC information. So far the best way seems to be outputting 480i from the DVD player to the LCD over Component, this works fine on my setup. This shouldnt be toob bad, you have an added conversion but the scaling should be okay. I cant test HDMI, but I am somewhat convinced that if you send 480i over HDMI that you will be able to keep the CC info, wether the TV sees it or not is up in the air, but could be worth a try. Or maybe someone in the forum with a player that has 480i over HDMI would be so kind as to test for you.
 
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