DVD Picture quality nitpicks - advice requested

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by Steve Griswold, Jan 16, 2004.

  1. Steve Griswold

    Steve Griswold Stunt Coordinator

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    I have a couple of questions regarding PQ of certain DVDs and am hoping to find out if they're source material based or if there's something in my setup that needs to be fixed.

    Relevant equipment:
    Panasonic PT-47WX53 (calibrated w/ DVE + 64 point convergence)
    Denon DVD-1600
    Blue Jeans Cables component cable


    Specific Nitpicks - these may or may not be related to each specific disc, but these are where I noticed the anomalies:

    1. A Bug's Life
    - Panning at the beginning is choppy
    - In scenes with a lot of flat color (esp. the green notice screen before the movie) I notice waviness/jitters in the picture going across a strip in the center only

    2. Band of Brothers (Disc 1)
    - In indoor/low light scenes there is a LOT of graininess.

    3. Most film-based material
    - Some jagginess and non-fluid motion

    4. Any disc
    - When in serviceman convergence mode, and DVD player is on, the convergence lines start to waver and spike (almost like an oscilloscope but not as bad)


    If any of this is normal, that's fine. I just want to know if I have anything set correctly or if there's a specific cause + solution for any of the problems.

    Panny settings:
    Color Temp: Normal
    Natural Color: Off
    Video NR: Off
    3D Y/C Filter: Off (This is greyed out -- normal?)
    Color Matrix: HD
    VM: Off

    Thanks for any help.
     
  2. Mark Murphy

    Mark Murphy Supporting Actor

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    I can only speak for Band of Brothers and I get lots of grain in dark scenes. Your player is a step up from mine as well (Mits DD-6030) but I did just pick up a Mits DD-8040 w/DCDI deinterlacer so I'll see if it makes a difference.
     
  3. Jeff Gatie

    Jeff Gatie Lead Actor

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    Band of Brothers was meant to have a lot of excessive film grain. Grain is often confused with a bad picture and mistaken for artifacting. Grain is a product of the original film stock (for example The Godfather) or is a specific technique (can be film stock, low light filming or digital post processing) used by the director (eg. SPR, Band of Brothers, Oh Brother Where Art Thou). What it is not is a bad DVD master or a bad player/cable/display.

    As to the other problems, I cannot speak to these specific disks, but it sounds like you may be watching in "Video" mode when you want to be in "Film" mode. Try switching the Denon to "Auto" or "Film" or turning on the 3:2 pulldown.
     
  4. Steve Griswold

    Steve Griswold Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm looking at the DVD-1600 menus and see no option to enable film/3:2 mode if it's currently disabled. ?
     
  5. Anthony_J

    Anthony_J Stunt Coordinator

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    It might not be your player...I get some of the same symptoms on my setup, a 53WX53 with a Sony NSP725 player hooked up via AR component cables.

    I get flickering and unstability in really saturated color situations for most film based materials. It only shows up in the top right corner of the screen, but it sounds similar to what you're seeing in the middle of the picture.

    I think it's an inherent weakness in the display when it receives a 480p signal, and not the DVD player. I've tried using a Denon 910 and saw the same thing. If I output an interlaced signal from the player and let the TV do the deinterlacing, the flicker goes away but PQ suffers.

    Check out "XXX" when Vin Diesel is jumping out of the plane and see if that triggers any unsteadiness in your picture. The blue sky drives my monitor crazy.

    The graininess thing seems to be more due to the original source material. I haven't viewed the discs, but "Band of Brothers" sounds like something that would have been shot a bit more grainy for effect.
     
  6. Steve Griswold

    Steve Griswold Stunt Coordinator

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    Yeah I had forgotten to mention that I guessed it was probably the high grain film used for shooting it. They use what looks like the same film in Gladiator too.

    Anyway that doesn't bother me because the sound and motion are phenomenal.

    I'm just wondering how to increase the PQ of film material on my monitor.

    I am wondering, however, how some monitors I've seen -- specifically the Loewe Aconda and B&O DVTV -- manage such smooth images from source film material. I was under the impression they were due to the DCDi decoder but I have yet to see that smoothness from my DVD-1600.
     
  7. Danny Beck

    Danny Beck Stunt Coordinator

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    I've aboslutely seen that stutter in "a bug's life" before. With various players as well so you know it's not your setup.


    Danny
     
  8. Anthony_J

    Anthony_J Stunt Coordinator

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    Non-graininess not intended by the director should depend solely on the DVD transfer source...digital movies (e.g. "Attack of the Clones") should have no grain if the DVD was sourced directly from the master and not from a film transfer. Real film grain isn't really a deinterlacing artifact and I haven't yet been exposed to a player that makes supposedly clear images grainy (although I hear the Samsung 931 is supposed to do just that.)

    Check out "X-2" for a great transfer. The movie is film based (non-digital), but there's not much graininess to be found.
     
  9. Danny Beck

    Danny Beck Stunt Coordinator

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    I've noticed grain before in Attack of the Clones. It's usually in distant background colors. I've never got a clear answer as to why but it's been noticable with various dvd players i've tried out.



    Danny
     
  10. Don_Berg

    Don_Berg Supporting Actor

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    The grainess in low light on film is due to the faster film speed used, its in the source material - usually desired by the director. So if you see the grain your DVD Player and TV are actually correct, thats what the director wanted. Color flicker is caused by the Faroudja chip being setup with CSS=on. The better faroudja-based models like the Panasonic RP82,XP30,XP50 have CSS=off which has no color flicker issues. The CSS was a color filter feature really meant for composite video where luminance and chroma signals are combined, but thats not the case with the modern DVD video from s-video or component connections. So CSS=off is prefered.
     
  11. Steve Griswold

    Steve Griswold Stunt Coordinator

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    Is there a way to turn CSS=off on the DVD-1600?
     
  12. greg_t

    greg_t Screenwriter

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    If I'm not mistaken, there was a firmware update from Denon that turned the CSS to off. I'm not sure if these were something that Denon released or if you had to send in the player or what. You might want to search over on the AVS forum because I think that is where I read it. I didn't see this answered yet, but the 3D Y/C filter will be greyed out with both component and S-video sources. If you input composite, it will then come into use.

    Edit: Apparently, Denon did make the firmware to turn CSS off available. Here are a couple of links on the AVS forum for some better information.

    http://archive.avsforum.com/avs-vb/s...hreadid=155397

    http://archive.avsforum.com/avs-vb/s...&highlight=CSS
     
  13. Don_Berg

    Don_Berg Supporting Actor

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    Yes only the factory thru the firmware can setup CSS=off.
     
  14. Jeff W.

    Jeff W. Stunt Coordinator

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    To answer one of your questions - the Comb/3D filter will be disabled on the Component input.
     
  15. Steve Griswold

    Steve Griswold Stunt Coordinator

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    Thanks for the links, greg_t

    Also thanks for the reminder, Jeff W - I had forgotten that the comb filter was for composite inputs only.
     
  16. Steve Griswold

    Steve Griswold Stunt Coordinator

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    After careful viewing, I have decided that the choppiness and jitteriness is disc-dependent. I don't know if it's a transfer issue or a problem with the disc itself, but after viewing a few DVDs with KNOWN "near-perfect" transfers (Freddy Vs. Jason, Finding Nemo, etc.) which exhibited zero PQ problems mentioned above, I guess I'll just have to live with the imperfections or only buy DVDs with awesome transfers. [​IMG]
     
  17. Jeff Gatie

    Jeff Gatie Lead Actor

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    I don't know about perfect picture on Finding Nemo. I keep seeing this fuzzy halo around the fish, like they are in water or something. I wish I could get rid of this, along with those streaks of light in Saving Private Ryan[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] !
     
  18. John S

    John S Producer

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    LMAO Jeff Gatie.. Good one..
     

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