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Home Theater, hugh, What's it really good for? (1 Viewer)

Jul 9, 2001
I hope this was catchy enough to get a few of you experts in her because I've got some hard decisions to make and I do not as yet have enough information. Here goes.
My friend had me over some time ago, and we watch Jurasic Park on his Home Theater System. It was great! but as I am beginning my foray into Home Theater, I spend most of the time watching cable and old movies, and I will watch DVD only occasionally. I have a 36 inch Mitsubishi from 1995, and it has a S-video connection and two external audio inputs and outputs. Now, if I purchase the onkyo 595, and the Sony 670D DVD changer, and it is all connected to a 5.1 channel Ascend Acoustics speaker surround sound package, will I get great sound from my DVD and not so great a picture because it is not a HDTV? Also, when I watch Jurasic Park over the cable, do they send over the 5.1 sound and only those so equipped can pick it up, or is the sound coming through cable coded differently that that from the DVD.
Basicly, can I get a more realistic sound coming from my old TV system if I add these components?


Stunt Coordinator
Mar 17, 1999
. . . and I will watch DVD only occasionally
MMhmmm . . . this is always how it starts

Welcome to our addiction!!

Yohan Pamudji

Supporting Actor
Apr 3, 2001
With the setup you describe, you will get a great picture and great sound. Obviously a widescreen TV will be able to take advantage of anamorphic DVDs and will be able to display even better images, but it sounds like you're trying to get the most out of your current TV and I doubt you'll be disappointed with the picture quality of DVD. You'll never be able to watch VHS without cringing afterward.
As for 5.1 over cable, the 5.1 I've experienced over cable has all been Dolby Digital encoded, just like the majority of DVDs. As long as you have a cable box capable of passing the digital audio stream to your receiver you'll be able to hear 5.1 over cable also.
So yes, the sound with these new components should be worlds ahead of TV speaker sound.
This screen has been formatted to fit your movie.


Senior HTF Member
Sep 28, 1998
Real Name
You won't get 5.1 audio on normal TV broadcasts, satellite, or cable. Only a few satellite pay-per-view movies have had it as far as I know.
Here is an article stating that HBO is set to begin sending 5.1 on movies, which you can enjoy only if your satellite or cable box can decode it.
You should also consider that most "older" movies don't have 5.1 sound anyway.
Regarding DVDs, your picture will be good on your TV via S-video, better than any other source, but not as good as it would be on an HDTV-ready monitor with built-in line-doubler or progressive-scan capability.

John Chow

Second Unit
Sep 18, 1998
Ok, I'll attempt a constructive reply...
Cable only (unless something is different with digital cable) transmits stuff in Dolby Pro-Logic. Therefore, you will probably want to get a receiver that supports Dolby Pro Logic 2 (DPL2) which supposedly (i say that 'cuz i haven't experienced it) is much better than the original Dolby Pro Logic.
I believe some satellite stations will broacast in 5.1, but I'm not absolutely sure about that.
I think you'll still get a great picture even without an HDTV set, either way, it should be better than what you're experiencing now. The larger and better the set you have, the more you'll tend to notice flaws in the source material. i.e. all dvds would probably look close to perfect on a 5" screen, since it would be too small to discern any imperfections.


Second Unit
Jul 31, 2000
You'll love the system just as you described it! :)
.... "just me up on my pony on my boat".

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