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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Thanks for all the help I have received in viewing threads. I am about to get the 503 CMX w/5002 card from Dell and now am looking at the final hardware I want. I have Timewarner digital cable in Houston and plan to get Timewarner HD. Due to various things I have read here (of which I probably am confused on some) I want to get a new Sony HD200 for OTA and SD cable (mainly for the display options i.e. no side bars). I also will probably get a new DVD player and then of course the Timewarner HD box. Also I will still have to hook up the VCR due to kids old movies.


Does this setup make sense? Is there an easier or better way? And will all that hardware fit into the 5002 ?


Thanks in advance.
 

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If you are not going to get DirecTV, you probably don't need the HD200. You can get the exact same ATSC/OTA circuitry in the Zenith HDV-420. Both units, and the HD200's "twin", the Zenith SAT-520, are made by LG in Korea (LG owns the Zenith brand now...). The 420 will also accept basic cable but since you already have digital cable you have a separate STB anyway.


You can hook the 420 (or the HD200, if you go that route...) into Input 1 with a standard VGA monitor cable. You can plug either a new DVD player or the HD TW box into Input 2 using a component cable set with BNC connectors on one end. If you want to use both, you'll need an external component switcher. Key Digital, Inday and others make suitable units. The VCR can "eventually" go into the s-video connector on the 5002 card but you may have to use the composite input on the card for now as you will probably need the s-video connection for your existing digital cable STB.


-- Gary
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the reply. I guess I thought I could avoid the external switcher with the HD200. My goal was to make the system more kid/wife friendly.


Any way to do that? While money is always an issue, I only get to make the purchase if they don't have to understand the setups to make it work, so I am willing to buy almost anything.


Any recomendations?
 

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What are you using for audio? Denon and others make home theater receivers that are video switchers. If you spring for the Denon AVR 5803, you can input all video sources into the Denon via composite, s video or component (3 inputs) and output everything to the Pio via the component out (Denon) to component in (Pio), so that you never have to change the Pio input mode. The Denon transcodes non-component signals to component. All you need to do is 1. turn on the Pioneer, 2. turn on the Denon and 3. change Denon to source you want to watch. the 5803 will also let you set different audio delay times for each source if you are getting lip-sync problems with any of the signals.
 

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I have the KD 2-1 component switcher which runs about $200. It is fully automatic and works by detecting an active signal on the "other" input so you could have the TW HD box and the DVD player hooked into switcher and normally leave the DVD unit off. As soon as you turn on the DVD player, it'll automatically switch the inputs. To go back to the TW HD you just have to turn off the DVD unit. There's also a manual set of buttons but I've never used them.


The Denen 5803 may be the ultimate solution, in terms of WAF, but last time I checked these units were over $4k (!).


-- Gary
 

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I paid $3100. The new AVR-3803 ($900) has 2 sets of component inputs and will upconvert s and composite to component. The older AVR-4802 ($1400) has 3 sets of component inputs but does not upconvert.
 

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I just checked out the 3803 on Denon's website. Looks like a winner. I may go for one of these myself!


I have a question, though, about how these units handle the up-conversion of s-video/composite to component. Can you select the output format (i.e. -- 480i/p, 720p, 1080i, etc.) for the conversion? What I'm concerned about is getting in the same situation where you have to watch 4:3-based material with sidebars that I originally experienced with my old E86.


-- Gary
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for the great options. I currently have a Denon A/V receiver but it does not handle component switching only s-video. I looked at the web page and the ones with component switching look awesome. WAF is the most important part of this purchase and set up.


Thanks for the advise on the auto switchers too. I think that also would do the trick. No big deal to have to switch inputs for the DVD/TW HD. Just don't want her and kids to have to mess with too much stuff. They watch SD mainly, and would like to have a dedicated input for digital cable that can be stretched.


Thanks again, I'll let you know what the wife says.
 

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I just ordered the 503CMX from Dell as well. I already have the Denon 3803 and plan to hook it up to the monitor via comonent cables. I can then route all the Composite, S-Video, & Component devices through the receiver which will convert to component.


The 3803 does not alter the format of the video signal only the physical level. So Svideo & composite are not upgraded to anything. Finally, after all these yrs I'll be able to use just one input on the monitor. I still can't believe it. Very WAF.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
RJ that sounds like a plan. Let me know how it works out. I may finally be on my way. Now, if I understand it right, you will then be able to use the 5002's "stretch" features to watch SD cable (or whatever). No side bars to deal with and no wife screaming about complexity.
 
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