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What's my best add on?

282 Views 6 Replies 2 Participants Last post by  hroeder
Here's what I have:

An RCA 52xx Rear Projection TV. It has one component in, which RCA tells me is not progressive, but which is labeled as if it were. One S-Video In and one coaxial cable In. RCA's claim at the time I got this was that it could produce over 800 lines of resolution.

I have a Motorola cable box. Believe it's a 2000. Definitely has digital output. S-Video is the only output that I know of, but I'll have to look again.

I have a JVC Receiver, Panasonic DVD recorder, RePlay 4504.

So what should I add to get consistently highest video and sound? (I'm not one of those people who goes out to BestBuy buys something with the intention of returning it. )

It appears Motorola is coming out with better boxes. Should I petition my cable company with prayer. (Insight Communications). I know my analog channels will remain analog. They come in via the coaxial. Would any set top box improve my current situations? (I currently run the S-Video through a small amp to both the RePlay and the Panasonic DVD R. The Panasonic is connected via component video and gives the best picture. Use the Replay for regular viewing convenience.

It's going to be a while before I can afford another monitor. (Actually I won this one.)
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Does your TV have a built-in HD tuner? Which model # is it? Does it have a DB-25 RGB/VGA input jack?

You need to give more info about your TV before anyone here can give good advice.

You could look up your TV by model number at http://www.RCA.com and when you get to the page that describes your TV, copy the web address (url) and paste it into a post on this thread, then we can assess what you have to work with.

We are willing to help but need more info.
Model is 52950. No VGA input jack. There is one S-video. Currently connected to Replay. One coaxial, connected directly to cable, pulling in analog channels. And one set of component inputs labeled Y Pb and Pr. Currently connected to Panasonic DVDEM20.

I asked RCA whether these were progressive capable, because the manual makes it unclear. The tech support person said no. The documentation does talk about 800 or 900 lines of resolution.
More questions for you:

What model is your JVC receiver? Can it switch either composite video (yellow jacks) or S-video? Does it have optical and/or coax digital audio inputs?

Will you be using the JVC receiver for all audio? Will you ever want to use the TV audio?

What outputs does your DCT-2000 cable box have in addition to RF (coax) and composite video (yellow jack) and left and right audio? Does it have the optional S-video? Optical or coax digital audio? A second set of left and right audio output?

What do you want to be able to record on the Replay unit besides analog cable channels: Digital cable channels? DVDs?

What do you want to be able to record on the DVD recorder besides analog cable channels: Digital cable channels? Programs from Replay (e.g., to make archive copies)?

Your TV is described on this web site: http://www.rca.com/product/viewdetai...45005,00.html?

The TV is not a high definition-ready unit.

Does the TV have any A/V inputs on the front? The owners manual is not clear on this.

Answers to these questions will be needed to determine the optimum connection configuration for your equipment. Sorry I did not ask more questions before.
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Dave I don't remember the model number of the JVC., It has both an optical and coaxial digital input. Both are in use. One from the RePlay and one from the DVD Recorder. It has DTS sound. All appropriate speakers supported. Only one video out from the Receiver, but that doesn't matter, because the TV has three separate ins.

The Motorola has an SPDIF out, as well as an SVideo out. I'm not using the SPDIF. S-Video is split three ways through the splitter/amp. One to the Replay. One to the DVD Recorder and one to a JVC S-VHS recorder that I rarely use. (I tape things for my son on occassion.) The S-VHS out goes to the Panasonic DVDR, for occassional copies of tapes. The Panasonic goes, via component Video to the Component in on the RCA. The Replay SVideo out goes to the SVideo in on the RCA. (My JVC has a front panel display, so I don't need to have video throughput for settings.) Coaxial video from cable company is split, one to the decoder box, one to the RCA coaxial in, and one to the Panasonic Coaxial in.

RCA does not have front inputs. I do use Sound Out from the RCA and run it through my JVC so that if I'm watching the TV, the sound is still going through the receiver.

Replay records mostly analog cable, but an occassional film. If I don't want to keep it it goes to the replay. If I want to save a copy it goes to the DVD recorder. I can record up two different programs and watch a third if I wish.

What I'm hearing is everything's pretty well setup unless I want to invest in a new monitor.
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It sounds to me like you have already exploited your equipment well. Here are a few thoughts and possible suggestions ...

Does your cable TV provider offer Dolby Digital 5.1 sound with any premium or PPV movies? If so, you may want to use one of your JVC digital audio inputs for the cable box instead of the Replay. I can't think of a way that Replay could ever deliver Dolby Digital 5.1 sound. Analog audio should be just fine from the Replay.

What do you have connected to the S-video input of the TV? Again, depending on your cable TV provider, the digital channels might offer better color using the S-video connection.

I am not a cable TV expert, but I don't see any reason to upgrade your cable box until you get an HD-capable TV monitor. Your box already has S-video and digital audio, which most DCT-2000's lack. If anyone else disagrees, speak up.

TV Settings (things you may already know):

How do you have your brightness and contrast set on the TV? The normal tendency is to set them too high, causing bright parts of the picture to "bloom" and get a bit fuzzy. The brightness control should be used to set how dark the black portions of the picture are shown. Then the contrast should be set to get the whites bright enough but not overdone. I don't know how the DVD setup disks (Avia and Video Essentials) work with a non-HD TV (I've never tried), but it seems like they should. There is some limited free setup stuff on many THX DVDs, like some Disney-produced movies.

The sharpness control is an artificial enhancer of the horizontal edges of items in the picture. Lower settings keep the edges from being overdone.

Of course, all of these settings are personal preference and relative to room lighting conditions.

You also have a black level adjustment in your DVD recorder/player (0 or 7.5 IRE). You may want to set the TV brightness and contrast for everything else and then see which DVD setting is best, since your TV does not appear to have separate settings for each input.

Enjoy !!!
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Thanks Dave. (The Replay goes to the SVideo in. And my model allows me to bypass the encoding if I want to watch the best image rather than use pause, etc.)
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