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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'll probably purchase an LT 150 in the next few weeks and I'm giving a lot of thought about how to feed it. I've considered HTPC, but it has real drawbacks when it comes to using it to scale OTA and cable/DSS. I've considered using a progressive DVD player (I've currently got a interlaced Panasonic DVD) and DSS upconverted from one of the new generation of DSS HDTV receivers (such as the Panasonic). My final option is to stay with my current DVD player, and get an outboard scaler, such as the Crystal Image or Quadscan. A big plus would be that I could use this as a video switcher, which is important with the LT150's single input, and also pass through HDTV (when I get it). Has anyone tried an outboard scaler with the LT150? Is it much of a step down from an HTPC? Is it much of a step up from externally deinterlaced signals (which I could get from a DVDO)?
 

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Step down from an HTPC??? Some would disagree.


As for using an iScan you have to consider the end result.


480i signal that gets A/D to be doubled to 480P. D/A Then it can be passed on to the LT150. Then the LT150 will A/D the signal and take the 480P signal and scale it up to 1024x768.


A CrystalImage could at least get the signal to the rate of the projector. Plus it includes HD passthrough.


My plan has always been to combine my LT150 with a Vigatec Dune. Toss in SDI on the DVD player and Sat. Ooooo then I could have properly scaled and deinterlaced singals direct to the LT150s resolution. Plus HDTV can not only be passed through but it can be scaled at the Vigatec.


I WANT MY VIGATEC NOW!!! I have been informed by Uwe that my unit is still a good month away.
 

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I bought a used DVDo Plus (the original V1 version) from a friend for <$200. I wanted something as I regularly use the LT150 to watch normal TV off satellite, local, or Tivo. The internal scaler of the LT150 was passable, but the DVDO (even this old model) is a dramatic improvement. Colors, detail, and sharpness are much improved.


That being said, my progressive scan DVD player (JVC XVD723 for $315) looks better going 480p straight to the LT150 than it does going Svideo 480i into the DVDo first. I did an A/B on them and both my wife and I agreed the DVD player does a noticeably better job.


But, you can find old DVDo iscans cheap on ebay. I think an old DVDo is fine for any Svideo signal, and still works very good on a 480i DVD player. But you'll still want to upgrade to a progressive scan.


So, for <$600 or so, you should be able to find a used DVDo and a decent progressive scan dvd player. Thats less than a Quadscan or Crystal Image. While they are certainly more versatile processors, I think it might be a better than buying one of them now and not using it when you upgrade to progressive scan DVD or HDTV tuner.


Granted, I have to unplug a cable to switch, but thats no big deal to me.


Just my $.02 ....I still want a Crystal Image myself....


-Dave
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Darian, you seem to be really high on the CI. Have you seen it on the LT150?


My comments about wondering if a CI or Quadscan is up to the quality of an HTPC is based on a lot of talk on the HTPC and Video Processor forums; there seems to be a consensus that a decent HTPC performs better than either of these mid-level scalers. I'm just wondering if that is true, particularly when you're only scaling to XGA, rather than 1920x1080, as is often done for CRTs, or other high resolutions.


You're right about spending the money saved on the projector on video processing. I have no problem at all dropping $1200 on external processing; it's not a money issue for me, it's a quality and ease of use issue. If you think a CI or Quadscan would present the same type of picture that people have been reporting from HTPCs, then I guess my decision is pretty clear. Used CI's can be picked up for under $1,000, and a new Quadscan Elite can be had for under $1,200. Either way, you could have an excellent scaler, screen, projector combo for $4,000.
 

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I am not that high on the CrystalImage. After all I bought a Vigatec.


As for performance.. you have too concider a few things. HTPCS are still behind scalers for EXTERNALLY SCALED SIGNALS. Keep in mind that you will be watching more than DVDs on your system. VHS (ick), Sat / Cable, LDs and HDTV.


HTPCs can be assembled pretty cheaply and can make a great image from DVDs that are played in the internal drive. Once you start talking about the other signals that would have to pass into a capture card...

Also you need to be able to get your HD signals to the projector.


The CrystalImage is one of the cheapest ways to get to the native rate of the projector. 1 composite, 1 S-Video, 1 component and one pass. DVDs can be done better by a HTPC. Its all a trade off.


I want the Vigatec. Hopefully I will get my unit one day and be able to give a solid answer about actuall perforamnce of the combo.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Frankly, I love movies, but I'm a sports NUT, so I suspect I'll have 50% DSS sports and 50% movies (although the movies are the critical viewing). I'm actually more interested in the Quadscan Elite than the CI, in part because of price, but also b/c of good things I've heard. I also like the fact that the Quadscan makes it VERY easy to use a 4:3 projector with a 16:9 screen. Have you seen both an HTPC and a CI and/or Quad with the LT150 when you were deciding on the Vigatech? How significant was the differance. How much was the price increase to the Vigatech? Obviously, if the price is worth the performance increase (as you obviously think it is, since you went that route) it would warrant significant consideration. Any other opinions?


[This message has been edited by lmo (edited 07-14-2001).]
 
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