Switch all video thru receiver - to switch or not? That's the question.

Discussion in 'AV Receivers' started by MichaelDDD, Oct 30, 2003.

  1. MichaelDDD

    MichaelDDD Supporting Actor

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    Getting ready to order some cables from BlueJeans. Want to know how many sets to order. Ergo this thread.

    My next receiver will the the Denon 3803, which does video-upconversion as well as component switching.

    I plan on having the following video sources all connected to the receiver, and a single set of component outs to the TV. The receiver will be doing all the switching so I can just leave the TV set on "Input 1" or whatever instead of having to switch inputs when I switch sources.

    1. Progressive Scan DVD - via component cables
    2. VCR used as tuner - via RCA composite video
    3. Other VCR...for playback/recording via composite video
    4. HTPC - via S-Video and optical digital for audio

    I'm thinking that the picture will be marginally better for the non-component inputs if I let the receiver do it's upconversion thing.

    There's an HDTV tuner down the road...way down the road, so component switching isn't an issue right now...but I'll throw that into the mix as well.

    What's your opinion on this dilemma, please?
     
  2. Tim K

    Tim K Second Unit

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    From Denon's site: "Video Conversion of Composite to S-Video and/or to Component"

    According to Denon's site, all it does is convert the video transmission format from composite to component. But that shouldn't give you a better picture at all. The source material is output in composite which is the lowest "quality" transmission. Once the signal has been output as composite, some of the information has already been "lost". All the receiver is going to do is seperate that transmission into component and pass it to your TV. So really all you are doing is converting a bad signal into a different type of signal, you are not adding lines of resolution. Personally, I think you stand a better chance of introducing more imperfections by converting the stream. The only purpose for this would be if your TV lacked composite inputs.

    This is not to be confused with "upconversion" where a 480i signal is upconverted to 480p or even 1080i, where the picture could be considered "better". There are some DVD players that do this, and some external line doublers available, but not this receiver.

    In my opinion, Video Switching can be convenient or in some cases necessary. If you have more video equipment than you have inputs on your TV, then you have no choice. But I think the more "pieces" you pass a signal through, the more opportunity you have to introduce problems into that signal. Personally, I only have 3 video sources in my HT. Each one gets its own input on the TV and I still have a 4th available. The advantage of not switching video is CABLES. To use the switching means you have to buy extra cables, and when you are talking about quality component cables, that can get expensive.

    I think people think that switching video inputs needs to be harder than it is. Most of us who have dealt with having 5 remotes on the table have gone to a universal/learning remote. Many of these remotes offer "macros" or stored multi-step procedures. Switching video inputs is as simple as pressing a button when you set up macros. When I want to turn off a DVD and turn to cable I simply press "Watch TV". The remote then stops the DVD, switched the receiver to "TV", The RPTV to "input 2", and jumps to the "cable" device screen. No getting up, no extra buttons to push.
     
  3. MichaelDDD

    MichaelDDD Supporting Actor

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    Nice post, Tim. [​IMG] I know Macros. Macros is Mike's friend. [​IMG]

    You did educate me on the diff b/t the switching and upconversion...I was a little confused there.

    I agree on the number of cables thing! I started doing the basic math over on the Bluejeans site...my CC was screaming at me from the confines of my wallet. [​IMG]

    So, basically, you've got all the video signals running to the TV and all the audio to the receiver, right?
     
  4. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Studio Mogul

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  5. Tim K

    Tim K Second Unit

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    Yes. My connections are as follows...

    Video:
    Std Cable from box via s-video to TV input 1
    HD cable from box via component to TV input 2
    DVD via component to TV input 3

    Audio:
    Std Cable from box via Digital Coax to Receiver's TV input
    HD cable from box uses above connection as well
    DVD via Digital Optical Cable to Receiver's DVD input
    CD via Digital Optical Cable to Receiver's CD input

    I have macros to switch to any of my 4 main options:
    Watch TV: TV to 1, Recv to TV, remote to cable screen
    Watch HDTV: TV to 2, Recv to TV, remote to HDTV screen
    Watch DVD: TV to 3, Recv to DVD, remote to DVD screen
    Listen to Music: CD or Radio? > Recv to CD, Remote to CD
     
  6. MichaelDDD

    MichaelDDD Supporting Actor

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    Thanks guys. [​IMG] My IQ just went up a few points. [​IMG]

    MIKE - so you still have to switch inputs at the TV when you change signals, correct? I can understand the "purist" approach you've taken though. I.E. all S-video sources, go via S-video to TV. Same for Composite and Component.

    TIM - Thanks for the breakdown
     
  7. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Studio Mogul

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