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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a Mits with one HDTV input and I have two HD sources. One is STB which outputs HD component, the other is my HTPC which outputs RGBHV.


Is there a box that will take these two sources as inputs, transcode the RGBHV to Component, then auto switch one of them as HD component to my TV?


Or do I have to buy a transcoder and autoswitcher to do this?


Which transcoder is better, Audio Authority (9A60, $120) or KeyDigital (KDVTCA2, $200)? Is KeyDigital KDSW2X1 the best auto switch?


Thanks,

Kevin
 

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I was in your shoes about 1 month ago. I never found such a beast--I ended up buying an Extron RGBHV switcher and plan to add an Extron component-to-RGBHV transcoder to handle a JVC D-Theater deck. I have 3 sources (Radeon 7500, Hipix and the soon-to-be-added JVC deck) to switch.


There are scalers out there that support both transcoding and switching as you would desire (e.g., Vigatec Dune), but then again, you're paying for an expensive scaler you may not need.


I researched most of the key players--Key Digital, Extron, Miranda, Altinex, etc.--in selecting my equipment. Extron wins hands down in everything, but at a price. Altinex's high end stuff is very good too, but their more affordable stuff doesn't seem to cut the mustard.


IMHO:


The Key Digital is a better transcoder than the AA unit...Extron's CVC-200 is the "best," but it ought to be, it costs $800. Then again, I've read of problems the Key Digital has on locking in on some sources; never an issue with the Extron.


The "best" autoswitch is probably something along the lines of Extron's SW AR MX HV series, but they are very expensive and very high bandwidth (600 MHz)...a 4 way SW 4 AR MX HV with IR control runs about $1,600...on sale. Extron's SW 2 AR HVxi 2 way RGBHV switcher runs about $390-400 without IR control (but supports auto switching)...I think this is probably the best bang for the buck for the switching side of the equation.


Then again, we're talking about true 5 BNC RGBHV switchers here--if you're switching VGA sources (which it sounds like you are), you could look at something like Extron's SW 2 VGAxi for something like $320. Talk to Alan here at AVS and he can hook you up on Extron--my guess is that the Key Digital transcoder coupled with an Extron switcher is going to give you the best picture for the least amount of money...still, you're probably looking at $550 when all is said and done. Cheaper equipment is typically plagued with noise, ringing, ghosting, banding, etc.--high quality switchers are just expensive to manufacture.


If you aren't familiar with Extron switchers, read here:

http://www.extron.com/product/listbytype.asp?subtype=6


P.S. Almost forgot, if you want to go used, eBay does a brisk business in used Extron equipment--caveat emptor, mind you, and be sure you're buying *exactly* what you need...as you can see, Extron has about 15 models of switchers in their current lineup alone.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Cool, thanks for the great info. It looks like I will start researching scalers now :)


When I was reading up on HDTV's over a year ago, it seemed like the popular opinion was that the line-doubler(?) in most TV's (especially Mits?) were pretty weak.


So... would I benefit greatly from getter a scaler like this Extron USP 405 or ISS 408? I wish the USP405 had a couple more component inputs and didn't use BNC. I haven't seen the price yet either, but if it can make my DirecTivo output look like HDTV ;-)


My sources are:

1) Philips HD STB (HD component)

2) Philips DirecTivo (Svideo)

3) HTPC (RGBHV/Breakout cable)

4) DVD player (component)

5) VCR (composite)


My TV is Mitsubishi 55807. I probably watch the DirecTivo about 70% of the time. A lot of channels coming out of the DirecTivo box look pretty poor (overly compressed?), will the scaler help at all or make it worse (garbage in -> garbage out)?


If there is a FAQ for this type of stuff or a few threads that would answer all my questions, somebody point me that way. I haven't had time to search for anything too much yet.



Thanks again!
 
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