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Lumagen Processing is not Obsolete...Right?

1561 Views 6 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  Gordon Fraser
I came across a statement from someone who said the "...LumagenHDP scaling (I think he meant processing) is obsolete for HD." That's the first I've heard that opinion. Anyone in agreement or wish to otherwise comment?
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I think that you are referring to me. I said that based on the SD (not HD) deinterlacing tests we ran on one of the Lumagens, the DVDO VP50, Pixelworks Crystalio, and the Calibre VantageHD.

Using the test patterns in the Silicon Optics Benchmark DVD, the Lumagen did not do well. All of the others did fine, except the DVDO failed the noise reduction test.
The current Lumagens use the SIL504 chip for SD de-interlacing, the same chip that the pre-VP50 DVDO's without the new ABT102 board use. I think this chip is somewhere around 2002 vintage.

Back then, SIL504 equipment ranked very high in terms of quality. True, there is new technology that does even better, but the SIL504 did not suddenly get worse.

Are there any web published shootouts showing the strong points and weak points of the various HD video processors, similar to the reviews that Stacy Spears and Don Munsil did for DVD players?
Also the OP asked about scaling and well lumagen is still the topdog in many minds. Infact we would love to see their non ringing scaling on more brands...

The SO benchmarks are outlining a few particular problem - edge processing and cadence detection. In those two aspects of processing, Lumagen is far behind the competition.

Interestingly enough, most content fits right into the 3:2/2:2 cadence scope, in which case Lumagen matches or passes many other current processors...

So, in some respects they have an outdated processing chip, in others (like 11pt calibration, 1080 processing, scaling) they are at the forefront of current processing technology.
Thanks for you comments so far. An associate confirmed what I had also read elsewhere that Lumagen has very imaginatively found other ways to perform while still having the SIL504 chip. It is explained that older chip has limited function in their current models, with proprietary processor and software doing much of the work. Maybe others could expound.
The SIL504 part is a two piece chip. The main processor and a co-processor. In the development of the previous, original Lumagen range they realised that the co-processing chip from Silicon image had hardware bugs in it that caused artefacts on screen with certain material. So, in the current range they chose to not use the co-processor and do that work in their own code on the main fpga. The development of this code took A LONG time to do. I and many others now feel that the Lumagen implimentation of the 504 is superior to all others. The 504 is just used for SD material de-interlacing. It is also widely held that the ability of this chip is not as good as the best current chips with video source SD material (ie sports, news, or studio based material).

Of course, the de-interlacing is just one part of the processing puzzle. While others might have superior video source de-interlacing they can be worse with film detection or their scaling may in fact exacerbate other artefacts in the image. As a complete package I think the current Lumagens are actually formidable performers and will be for some time to come.

To say that Lumagen processing is obsolete for HD is incorrect as has already been mentioned.


P.S . I am the Lumagen distributor in the UK
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