New Toys: Samsung HLN-567W & Denon DVD-2200

Discussion in 'Displays' started by Scott Wong, Dec 3, 2003.

  1. Scott Wong

    Scott Wong Second Unit

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    My girlfriend and I got both of these at Ultimate Electronics yesterday. They'll be delivered on Saturday along with a new Bell'ogetti stand for the Samsung.

    I currently just have a Sony WEGA 36-inch set (KV36FV15) along with a Toshiba SD-6200 player. I regret having ever purchased the Tosh DVD player because I never really used it to its full potential. My Sony set is non-HD. My friend who works at Ultimate Eletronics advised me the new Burr Brown D/A converters in Denon's new progressive scan DVD players are much more advanced than my Tosh. *shrug* He gave me a good deal on both products so I decided to go with that, too.

    It's all being delivered on Saturday. I'm chompin' at the bit right now since it's only Wednesday. [​IMG] I'll certainly write back with my comments once it's all hooked up. I am also contemplating Time Warner Digital Cable since they are steadily increasing their HD-content. I believe they currently have ten channels.

    Just curious... I currently have the AVIA DVD for calibration purposes. This worked excellent on my Sony. Realistically, is there anything else I need to do? Should I pay for professional calibration? I know that the Samsung DLP's are supposed to be pretty well set outta the box. If anyone has this set or the "little brother" to my HLN-567W, I'd appreciate your comments and input.

    Thanks...

    Scott.
     
  2. Scott Wong

    Scott Wong Second Unit

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    I ended up getting both of these delivered on Saturday.

    As of the moment, I'm just overall pretty disappointed. I don't know if it's a matter of the DVD player, the fact that the TV needs to be calibrated, or a multitude of other things.

    First, I am disappointed with the way my DVD's look. I did give my Avia DVD a spin, however, because of the DLP display (and Avia being for normal 'electron beam'/CRT televisions?) it was difficult for me to calibrate. Each and every test pattern just seemed to blend together and look the same. So I'm definitely not comfortable in my calibration.

    The Denon DVD-2200 is an impressive unit with a lot of features. I watched several high quality DVD's using progressive scan and also with the progressive scan mode turned off. Several people on other home theater forums have suggested I actually manually turn the progressive scan OFF on my Denon DVD-2200 because the scaler in my TV is far better than the one offered in my DVD player. This bothers me. Why in the hell did I just spend $500+ on a DVD player only to be 'turning off' one of its main features.

    So, I packed up the Denon last nite and hooked back up my Toshiba SD-6200. With the progressive scan mode turned OFF, my older Toshiba looked way beter. Still nothing that blew me away, but I was moderately impressed.

    With that said, I am definitely going to be returning the Denon DVD-2200 and holding onto my Toshiba SD-6200. There are a few DVI-capable DVD players on the market right now but two of the three seem to be having issues. The Samsung HD-931 looked to be an impressive contender. However, several others at various other forusm have mentioned issues about watching 4:3 DVD material with the Samsung via the DVI output... and then the player forcing the picture to stretch. As though, you cannot view it in it's native 4:3 ratio. Not that I have a lot of 4:3 ratio DVD's, but it still seems to be an issue. It also uses a PC colorspace instead of a video colorspace so it tends to crush blacks and whites. Again, I've not seen this in person. These are just the two main issues I have seen discussed regarding the Samsung HD-931. You can get the Samsung player for about $299.

    There is also the Bravo D1 player with a DVI output. This player has an intermittent power supply issue. I've noticed several people complaining about it while others have had no issues at all. Bravo is supposedly aware of the issue and players are still backordered for three weeks on their website. It doesn't seem as though a lot of people are all that concerned with it... but I am. You can get the Bravo player for $199 at their website.

    There is also the Denon DVD-5900 which is way outta my league so I won't even bother commenting on it even though it has a DVI output. But, I'm sure it's phenomenal... probably because it's, like, $2,000.00. heh heh.

    Finally, the last one I'm aware of is the LG LST-3510A. LG supposedly is a subsidiary of Zenith and makes other manufacturers HDTV OTA tuners, as well. (or at least some parts for them) The cool thing about the LG player is it's a DVD player with a DVI output but it also has an HDTV OTA tuner built in!! Have any of you guys seen this thing?? It's so awesome! This means only one DVI connection is needed for both DVD playback as well as HD viewing!! [​IMG] It's still fairly new so I've not yet read about any issues. I've seen it online for as low as $425.

    With that said, I'm not sure what to do at this point except know that I messed up by getting a progressive scan DVD player with standard component video inputs. I'm sure that even the Denon DVD-2200 is a great player... it just fails to look all that great on my Samsung HLN-567W.

    I currently have standard cable going into it and yes, that sucks, too. Certain channels are simply OK. Others are downright unwatchable. Talk about bringing out all of the impurities... the Samsung DLP certainly has no problem doing that. Any artifacts at all, and you're doomed. The Samsung proudly displays any artifact and well, standard cable television has quite a few of those.

    Time Warner cable will be here later on to install HD service. My association already pays for standard basic extended service so I merely have to pay the difference each month for the HD service. This turns out to be well worth it. Hopefully *crosses fingers* I will be blown away when I get an actual HD signal going through my new Samsung.

    Overall, I am disappointed at the moment. But that isn't because the Samsung isn't a phenomenal TV... because it is. I just don't think I'm doing the TV justice right now by feeding it all of these shitty sources. I know this TV is capable of so much more than I've currently been able to give it these last couple of days. I think two things need to happen:

    1. I need to obtain a DVI output capable DVD player for this particular television. I initially walked into the store the day I bought these with the Samsung HD-931 in mind. I have heard that DVI does output a bit more detail and less saturation than component video. I, however, did not personally see that large of a difference when viewed side by side. Evidently, it must be there.? I am unsure of what player to get but only hope that other manufacturers will soon hop on the bandwagon.

    2. I need to get an actual HD signal going into this thing and that will happen later today. Just as soon as I run out and drop more money and buy another component video cable and another set of audio cables for the HD tuner. (thanks, Jeffrey!!)

    I suppose I'll post more later once I get the HD signal going into it.

    Also, if any of you have this same set and might be able to share some 'settings' with me, I would greatly appreciate any suggestions or tips you might have. I know each set varies from another but I am curious to know how your settings look for DVD viewing and personal TV viewing.

    Thanks...

    Scott.
     
  3. Scott Dautel

    Scott Dautel Second Unit

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    Scott ... regarding image calibration of your Sammy DLP ....

    I was using the orig version of VE to calibrate my InFocus X1 DLP. I found basically the same problem you mentioned. That is, the TV controls don't seem to have much ability to alter the test patterns. I'm still not sure if this is a DLP issue or a component video/DLP issue.

    However, someone gave me a simple tip that made a quite amazing improvement. Now don't laugh but ... forget Avia & VE for the moment and simply use the image calibration section on the latest version of "THX Optimizer" You'll find THX Optimizer on many recent discs, I used the new version on "Nemo". You'll also find it on "Pirates of the Caribbean".

    It just seems that the contrast & brightness test patterns on THX Optimizer are perfectly suited to DLP. I really was surprised at the significant improvement it provided on shadow detail for my X1.

    This is all just temporary .. I fully expect the new Digital Video Essentials to offer even better calibration tools for DLP. I'll order it this week.

    Good luck & I'm anxiously awaiting your next report, since I'm considering the Sammy 50" DLP for my family room after the holidays ... to be used with std. cable (Comcast), VHS & DVD.

    Scott
     
  4. BrianMagog

    BrianMagog Stunt Coordinator

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    If you're not going to use the SACD/DVD-A functions of the 2200, then you are probably better off with a DVI-capable DVD player.
     
  5. Scott Wong

    Scott Wong Second Unit

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    Scott: I will try the THX Optimizer method you mentioned. Now you've got me intrigued so I'll give that a whirl later on this evening...

    In the meantime...

    I returned my Denon DVD-2200 earlier this morning. I mentioned to my salesperson that I definitely want to go with a DVD utilizing a DVI ouput. I advised I wasn't comfortable in going with the Samsung HD-931 but to let me know if/when: a.) Samsung releases some kind of firmware upgrade to take care of their issues. b.) Another manufacturer releases a DVD player with a DVI output.

    The Time Warner cable guy stopped by earlier this afternoon and he was my savior. Okay, maybe that's a bit extreme but let's just say I'm no longer disappointed at all.

    I now have High Definition television service in full. And it is nothing short of breath taking on my Samsung HLN-567W. I'm now remembering why I bought this TV in the first place. [​IMG] I cannot even begin to tell you how pleased I am with the results. I don't even care what I'm watching... I've spent the last six hours or so on my couch flipping thru the various channels broadcasted in HD. The DiscoveryHD channel is amazing!! Even my girlfriend who usually doesn't utter a word about "quality" and stuff like that... even she could not stop talking about it. So you know that's saying something. [​IMG] There are even a few 'promotional' channels that Time Warner cable broadcasts in HD as well as some local programming. INHD and INHD2 both seem to be promotional... whereas, the content seems to fluctuate between sports, then they'll toss in an old movie, then some old TV programs, then some nature scenery, etc, etc. Those are also brilliant... heck, anything in HD has been spectacular. OK, I think I've used every adjective I could think of to describe the HD broadcasts. I think you get the picture (umm, no pun intended).

    One other thing I noticed, the HD Tuner/cable box that Time Warner brought over this afternoon has your basic component video output that I am running to my TV's HD component input. But get this: There is also a DVI out put on the cable box!!! I'm not sure if I'd ever use this because the future DVD player I plan on purchasing will be DVI equipped. However, I was just shocked when I looked behind the unit and saw a DVI output. In the manual they gave me of the cable box, it currently states that the "DVI output of your cable box is for future use". So I'm wondering if they're even sending a signal from that output?? I don't have a DVI cable otherwise I'd certainly try it. Still, I am impressed with the component video output of the cable box/HD tuner.

    In the meantime, I plan on using my Toshiba SD-6200 until I find a DVI capable DVD player that I like.

    Scott.
     
  6. John S

    John S Producer

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    Do you have any what they call full frame DVD's???

    I just bought T3 in full frame, and man, I'll bet it would go along way on an HDTV set. I am expecting mine any day now, being shipped trucking line.

    But I did watch it on a 36" CRT non-hd Mitsubishi and even on that set, fed by svideo, it was way impressive.
     
  7. John_Bonner

    John_Bonner Supporting Actor

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  8. Joe Hsu

    Joe Hsu Supporting Actor

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    whoops, I was wrong. doh.

    Other than that...the Samsung is gorgeous! Hopefully all your woes will be solved with the right player, as I know for a fact that the display is great...we have a 46 and 56" in the store, they produce some of the best images we have, and we sell Pioneer Elite, Sony XBR/Grand Wegas and Loewes.

    Congrats [​IMG]
     
  9. Scott Wong

    Scott Wong Second Unit

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