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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Last week I got a chance to see a pre-production Marantz DLP in action. I only had a few minutes to check it out, but here's what I found:


- Native 16x9 DLP

- Native resolution of 1280x720 (I believe this uses the TI HD-1 DMD chip)

- S-vid, component (RCA) & RGB (HD-15) inputs

- RS-232 control port & 2 sets of contacts for screen control


Now here's the killer:


- Firewire in

- Toslink out


Although labeled "DV in", the Marantz technical reps (one was a developer) believed the Firewire port should work with DVHS. (Unfortunately, this was not active on the pre-production unit.) When decoding the MPEG stream from the Firewire port, the audio bitstream (be it DD, DTS, etc.) is passed through to the optical output.


I was able to see it in action for a few minutes with a Meridian DVD player feeding the S-video input & with Powerpoint @ 1024 x 768 via the RGB in. I must say the DVD looked terrific for an S-video feed without an external scaler.


Production models are due out around mid-October, but I am angling to get a repeat visit as that approaches. As soon as I can get near one with an active Firewire port, I'll be feeding D-VHS its way. Will report back then...





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Peter
 

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Peter,

Thank you for bringing this to our attention. It is very interesting to those of us who have Panasonic PV-HD1000 recorders. I do have a couple of questions about the advantages/disadvantages of the Firewire input:


1. Right now I have all my electronics in the front of my room and I run coaxial cable into the front wall,through the attic, and down the rear wall to my ceiling mounted Sony 10HT. Could I run such a length of Firewire, or would the electronic source have to be located near the projector?

2. If the decoded sound is only via optical output at the projector, I would now have the same problem running a very long optical cable to the front of the room where the processor is located.In other words, does this projector require that the audio/video electronics be located reasonably near the projector, with long runs for the speaker cables?

3. Am I correct in assuming that this projector would not meet the MPAA demands for a DVI interface, and therefore would be in that group of HD systems that might be "down-rezed" by DirectTV/Dish sometime in the future when that protocol is instituted?

Regards,

Chazz
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Chazz -


Your points about the cable lengths are well taken. Firewire cable runs can be extended through the use of a repeater (essentially a 2 port hub), but I'm not sure what the implications are when it comes to the optical cable. This would have implications in my planned setup as well, so I'll look into it further.


I thought it was very interesting that Marantz had chosen a firewire input rather than DVI or even SDI. I think the studios would be OK with it as long as it supports 5C (but no, I didn't get a chance to ask that). I suppose the risk of being "down-rezed" here is the same one as exists fundamentally with the 5000/Modulator setup.


Stephen -


I haven't gotten a projected cost yet. By size do you mean screen size (~ 120" diagonal), chip size (1280 x 720) or physical size (comparable to most XGA LCD projectors - definitely smaller than, say, a Sony 10HT)? I didn't get specs as to light output or contrast ratio (guess my mind was reeling from the possibilities afforded by the Firewire port http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/wink.gif ).


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Peter
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The black level looked pretty good during what I would term casual viewing. I wasn't able to put up any test material (e.g. V.E. or Avia), though.


One thing I should also mention is that the projector was fairly quiet. Again, no opportunity to take SPL readings, but I did get a look at a photo of the internal baffling. Obviously, quiet operation was a design goal for this unit.


One last little "nice touch" was that the recessed panel on the back of the unit where the cables connect has a light strip above it which can be switched on to allow connections to be made in a dark room. This may be more applicable to commercial or portable use than in a built-in scenario, but still struck me as a nice attention to usability details.



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Peter


[This message has been edited by peterd (edited 08-14-2001).]
 
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