ReplayTV - RF or Composite????

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by MarkHastings, Feb 2, 2003.

  1. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    I just bought/hooked up my ReplayTV. I am using the Component out to my tv and I have a Digital Cable box. Here's a diagram of both scenarios below: ReplayTV Scenarios #1 & #2

    Scenarios #1
    I am taking the cable source (RF) and I'm going into the D.Cable Box first, then came out the D.Cable Box's RF and connected it to the RF input on the ReplayTV. Finally, I'm going to the TV via a Component Cable. The ReplayTV menus look amazingly clear so I know there isn't any problems with my component connection, but the cable connection looks slightly fuzzy.

    Scenarios #2
    I've also done this route. The cable source (RF) into the D.Cable Box first, then I came out of the D.Cable Box via the composite (red, white, & yellow RCA cable) and went into the ReplayTV via the composite input, then I go to the TV through the Component cable. The image looks EXACTLY the same as scenario #1.

    I figured Scenario #2 wouldn't look too clean, but I figured Scenario #1 would look better, but it doesn't.

    My component cable is a brand new Monster cable. My RF cables are basic cables that I got from the cable company. I know they are all ok because I've checked each one by only using them with my cable box and the signal looks fine for each one. My Digital Cable has always looked great, in fact, when I switch between the output of the Digital Cable box and the ReplayTV, there's an amazing difference in quality. YOu can especially notice it in the station ID logos (in the bottom right of the screen).

    Thoughts??????
     
  2. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    Bumping my thread
    Now that I'm a bit more familiar with the ReplayTV process, could my slightly blurred tv image be because of the compression used in the ReplayTV? I assume I'm correct in thinking that the signal I am watching is being recorded/buffered so that I can do the pause and rewind live TV thing. I also assume that this function records in high quality. I have my default recording set to high...

    Is this blurry effect just something that comes with this sort of technology?

    Anyone????
     
  3. Patrick Sun

    Patrick Sun Studio Mogul

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    You're most likely watching buffered data, I see the same lack of quality watching in 'real time'.
     
  4. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    Patrick,

    Excuse the dumb question, When you say 'real time' do you mean the 'live' signal (i.e. when the LIVE graphic is displayed in the lower right hand corner)? Am I correct in assuming that the LIVE signal is still buffered (by a few seconds)? And if so...is there a way to not watch the buffered way?

    It makes sense that I am watching a slightly buffered signal (for the whole ability to pause and rewind), but I just want to know if I can watch the signal without it buffering? I realize I won't be able to pause or rewind, but my Digital Cable doesn't have Component and Optical outputs (like the ReplayTV does) and I want to be able to watch tv using these connections.

    If the answer is "no, I can't" than I'm fine enough to watch the RF output of my cable box. What I've done is split the output of my cable box and ran one RF to the TV (so I can bypass the ReplayTV and watch the cable box directly). And ran the other RF to the ReplayTV, where I then come out the component connection. New ReplayTV setup Diagram

    Which is fine for me at the moment, unless there's a way to clean up the ReplayTV signal?

    p.s. The reason why I want to bypass the ReplayTV altogether and not use the ReplayTV's RF out is because I don't like the delay when I change channels...When I'm watching tv normally, I just want to be able to use the digital cable box directly. (Hopefully that made sense) [​IMG]
     
  5. Chad Parks

    Chad Parks Stunt Coordinator

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    I think it just assumes you WANT to buffer the data always (so you can pause live TV, etc). It is about 3 seconds behind truly LIVE broadcasting.

    There's no way to disable this that I know of.

    As far as the delay, I've just gotten used to surfing the channel grid, and THEN going to a program I want to watch. I think it's much more efficient myself.
     
  6. Andy_SB

    Andy_SB Agent

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    Mark, I have an older Replay, but I'll answer with the way my unit works.

    Yes, when you are watching "live" TV, it is buffered by about a second or two. You'll notice this if you turn the same channel on in another room - the sound coming from each room will not be in sync.

    The unit does "buffer" at the highest possible quality. On most channels, I can't tell any difference between the "buffered" picture and direct connections on my system, however, I have regular cable and only a 27" analog TV. There are limitations to the recording compression used by the Replay so it's not entirely unusual for you to see some softening of the picture through the unit, especially if you have a nice/large TV.

    On my unit, there is no way to watch "unbuffered" TV, as you put it, because you're correct in surmising that it's necessary to do this for the pause/instant replay type features.

    So, if you want to watch "unbuffered" TV, you have to bypass the Replay. [​IMG]

    As for the delay in changing channels, most people get used to that. Personally, it doesn't bother me at all because I don't have to channel surf since I always have recorded material to watch, and even if I don't, the Channel Guide is a very useful tool.

    Good luck, and if you have more questions, check out http://replayfaq.leavensfamily.com/ - a very good source of info. [​IMG]

    - Andy

    Edit: Chad covered most of what I said, much more succinctly I might add. [​IMG]
     
  7. Doug_B

    Doug_B Screenwriter

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  8. David Judah

    David Judah Screenwriter

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    Unfortunately, the Replay units only send progressive component output for the menu system and the picture viewer, not for the channels.

    When I called Sonic Blue's customer support number for clarification on that issue, they told me they might offer an upgrade sometime later this year.

    DJ
     
  9. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    Thanks all for the info. I guess I've got mine setup the best possible way.

    There is a definite difference in quality on my 46" (16x9) Mitsubishi RPTV between the ReplayTV signal and the direct Cable box signal, but by splitting the RF connection, I guess I have a choice on how to watch tv.

    Thanks again.
    -Mark
     

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