Really Big Screens and the Need for HiDef Media

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Bryant Trew, Aug 11, 2002.

  1. Bryant Trew

    Bryant Trew Second Unit

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    Hi Everyone,

    I just had to share this with you, because I'm kind of excited. I was in NYC this weekend and went to Cosmophonic Sound to see the new Piano Plus Avanti. I saw the unit, and despite that the unit wasn't color, contrast or sharpness calibrated, and the unit was in a temporary position requiring keystoning, I was really, REALLY, REALLY impressed.

    It's hard to believe that a unit so small, and costing relatively so few dollars, has such a great picture. I mean, the value was truly there, and I can't see how anyone would spend double and triple the price for other DLP units. However; and hence the reason why I'm posting in the Software forum, watching DVD on a 100" screen really demonstrated the need for high definition media. While the picture looked great, it did not look as good as my 58" Elite, primarily because the perception of sharpness in the image was lowered so much (by the larger screen). The problem was so obvious that I actually was turned off adding DLP to my home theatre.

    DVD just isn't good enough for images that large IMO. Mind you, if I had never seen how good DVD could looked on my 58", I would be UTTERLY BLOWN AWAY by the Piano Avanti. That is, I would never have felt the loss of sharpness and would be content with the Piano's picture.

    There's still a good chance that I might pick one up, but I'll definitely be longing for high definition media. For images that large it is an absolute requirement!
     
  2. DaViD Boulet

    DaViD Boulet Lead Actor

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    I still find that the impact of a 30 degree viewing angle makes a front-projection system worth-while even with DVD media...although as you say obviously at that scale/size DVDs don't have the quite the sharpness that they have on a RP set. Anyone else reading this who hasn't seen a good front-projection setup do not be discouraged...trust me...the image that most of these *affordable* little digital projectors can put out on a large screen is awesome and I will *not* buy another "TV" for my movies...I'm saving for front projection myself.
    Despite the somewhat softer appearance at these large screen sizes, at the same time I notice that you can discern much finer details and content in the DVD image than you can on a RP set seated far enough away to keep it "sharp". How close were you to the screen? The Piano typically has a pretty sharp picture but it's image can vary based on input connection...DVI and SVGA in look the best, with component next and S/Composite last. Also, the digital keystoning may soften the picture too given that it recalculates all the pixels. After all, the Piano's strength was that it shouldn't *need* to do any scaling if set up properly.
    BTW the Piano (in 16x9 mode) only has 480 vertical resolution...so any benefit it would have with displaying a downconvtered (internally) HD image would be that it could avoid over-filtering and display the image in pure 480P (most movies on DVD are "filtered" for 480I to minimize aliasing...so when we display them back as 480P we're not quite getting all the vertical resolution we would have if the studio hadn't done us the "favor" of filtering during disc mastering).
    -dave [​IMG]
    p.s. if you haven't already, visit the avs form:
    http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/
    check out the digital projectors forums (2, one < $5000 and one > ).
     
  3. Bryant Trew

    Bryant Trew Second Unit

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    Quite true. The unit had an awesome picture for not being calibrated AND being run through s-video instead of component. If I had not already purchased my Elite RPTV, I quite probably would go with the DLP. That is, if I had not made such a large investment in the RPTV and if I had not seen how good DVD looks on my RPTV.

    If I was just moving up from a 32inch screen, I would know no better.

    I cannot emphasize enough that the Plus is totally fantastic. I would love to see one calibrated!
     
  4. Paul_Scott

    Paul_Scott Lead Actor

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    Bryant,
    i haven't seen the Plus, but you have to realize that an using s-video connection is a poor second to using a breakout component cable to run 480p- or if inclined, using an HTPC to scale the image.
    when i first got my LT150 last year (happy anniversary!), all i had for several week was the s-video connection.
    and i was arriving at the same conclusions you did.
    then i got a breakout cable and a prog scan player.

    in the last year, i've done some critical viewing of this pj and rp's like the pioneer elite.
    throwing the same size image, i would expect them to look VERY equivilent. the higher end elite is still far from perfect, even with hi-def feeds...IF you look close enough.
    but that applies to everything.
    you may be impressed now, but you would be surprised to see just how incredible a $20 dvd playing on a $200 dvd player connected to a $2000 projector and thrown on a $40 DIY screen can look.
    not good for the money, just flat out incredible.

    i'd love to see hi-def content expand as fast as possible, but as long as the print, transfer and authoring of a dvd are well done, I'm very satisfied.
     
  5. DaViD Boulet

    DaViD Boulet Lead Actor

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    I've seen the LT150 in action too (HTPC) and was blown away. The rainbows were a problem for me so it's not an option in my HT, but I keep waiting for an affordable "rainbow free" version to appear!

    Regarding the quality or perceived quality of DVD vs HDTV...yes...I totally agree that the S-Video connection is a huge thorn in the side of the Piano demonstration that was hosted. Properly displayed (I've seen these on the Sharp 9000, Hitachi 5500, and LT150) with 480P or HTPC there are some DVDs that "push the limits" and, without direct comparison, make you think that you're almost watching an HD signal:

    Training Day
    5th Element (super bit)
    Dinosaur
    Toy Story

    They literally look so good that you keep saying to yourself "it looks like HD it looks like HD". Naturally, I'm sure if we had a boni-fide HD transfer to watch of these films it would look distinctly better...but the DVD is good enough that without such a comparison you can't imagine what you're missing!

    -dave
     

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