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Progressive Scan Player Question

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Bob Graham, Mar 4, 2002.

  1. Bob Graham

    Bob Graham Supporting Actor

    May 11, 2001
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    Bob Graham
    I have an RCA 16x9 Direct view HDTV. It does a great job on anamorphic encoded discs. When I play a disc that's letterboxed, but not anamorphic I use the zoom mode to eliminate or minimize the letterbox bars at the bottom of the screen (as well as the 4x3 gray area on the side of the screen). Naturally, there is some loss of clarity with the zoom mode. My DVD Player is a Pioneer, non-progressive scan. Will upgrading to a progressive scan player improve the clarity and sharpness of non-anamorphic DVDs played in the zoom mode? I haven't found a store in the area that has these the RCA set hooked up to a progressive scan player for demonstration.
  2. Allan Jayne

    Allan Jayne Cinematographer

    Nov 1, 1998
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    A progressive scan player gives you a better quality of picture (on average) for all DVD's but does not specifically improve the quality of zooming.
    If the TV uses optical zoom, all the scan lines are spaced out a bit more and there are fewer visible scan lines altoghether. There is no electronic content difference. Since the picture is larger overall, imperfections in the source will seem more obtrusive than before. Also the gaps between scan lines are now bigger and may seem more obtrusive too.
    Electronic zoom (which involves scaling) is actually better than optical zoom if done right, which includes de-interlacing thge video as a separate first stage. Electronic zoom of a progressive input will be somewhat better than of an interlaced input. I don't know of any electronic zoom expressly for non-anamorphic letterbox programs -- DVD player, TV, or stand-alone doulber -- but whoever comes out with this will have a big one-up on the competition.
    Caution: Some TV sets won't let you zoom progressive input or HDTV input.
    Video hints:

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