Toshiba A1 SD-DVD Upconversion - Opinions?

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Currently I own a Samsung DVD-HD841 that upconverts standard DVD via DVI-to-HDMI output. I am running it into a JVC LCoS set at 720p (the set's native resolution).

I am seriously considering a Toshiba A1 HD-DVD player and was wondering if you think the standard DVD upconversion to 720p would be better handled by the Toshiba and ultimately look sharper than what the Samsung provides. Any opinions would be appreciated; I'm thinking of getting the A1 on Friday.
 

RobertDW

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All i can tell you is I have a SDI modified Oppo player runing to a DVDO HD+ video processor/scaler and since I bought the Toshiba HD-XA1 in May this year the Oppo and processor have not even been powered on.
 
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WOW! Now, that is impressive.

I've had the Samsung for almost two years now. It does a pretty good job with upconversion, but I've always thought that it could do better. Of course, I base that on no experience with any other upconverting DVD player on my TV, but the Samsung unit seems to add a slight level of noise to the picture. It could be my imagination, or it could be normal for the upconverting process, but I seem to recall reading somewhere a while back that converting DVI to HDMI (as I have to do given the output of the player and the input of my TV) is an inferior delivery method versus using HDMI for the entire process.
 

Stevepro1

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Gregory, get A1 while you can. It will be discontinued shortly in favor of the A2.

I too am running a HDMI > DVI on a Toshiba 1080i resoultion tv [I can't recall the mod# right now]. The picture is FANTASTIC. Some standard DVDs come so close to HD that its difficult to tell that they aren't, e.g., T2, Extreme Edition. With the A1, I find myself buying more standard DVDs as well as HD and enjoying them a LOT more.

The connecting wire is very high quality [ramelectronics.com] and has dedicated ends, not an adaptor. I originally had a wire with an adaptor, but I was getting occasional video drop-outs in the form of shooting blue or white horizontal lines. Changing the wire solved that problem.

Make sure that the A1 has version 2.0 software which contains a fix for a video softness problem in 720p. Even though the tv is 720p, try keeping the A1 at 1080i. I think you wioll find that this gives you the best results.
 

Chris Dugger

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I second that.....

and on a second note.....

I converted a HD episode of LOST from and XVID file to DVD....

Played it on the A1 (upconverted 480p to 1080i) to a 12 foot screen and the results were INCREDIBLE.

Dugger
 

Bob_L

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The A1 is easily the best quality upconverting DVD player and CD player that I've ever owned.
 
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Thanks for all of the replies. You guys have really helped me make the most informed decision.

I did spring for the A1 this morning. I also just got off the phone with Toshiba and they're sending out the v2.0 firmware disc. I probably won't hook up the player until I get the disc, but I might end up giving in. I also picked up Sleepy Hollow, Swordfish and Fast and the Furious as my first HD-DVD discs (I wanted one from each studio). My birthday and Christmas are right around the corner, and HD-DVDs are basically all I'm asking for.

Thanks again!
 

Michael TLV

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Greetings

A couple of things ...

The SD upscaling uses the wrong colorspace which means errors.

Deinterlacing is not the best from this unit.

Upscaled images are pleasing to look at though, but you give up speed and good remote interactivity to the player.

Regards
 

Paul Arnette

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I'd like to hear a bit more about this too, if you don't mind? I assume you are talking about the HD-A1, correct?

I thought that the colorspace issue with HDMI was addressed in firmware version 2.0, and that the only colorspace issues that currectly exist are going from HDMI -> DVI.

So you are saying that even with the firmware upgrade the colorspace on SD DVD is incorrect?

I haven't had a chance to do any A/B comparisons between my HD-A1 and my Oppo 971, but I did upconvert X-Men: The Last Stand via my HD-A1 and it looked near-HD. It was pretty amazing. I'd have a hard time believing the Oppo could surpass it. Nevertheless, the Oppo has its purposes too, namely PAL-to-NTSC conversion, region-free capability, and 'stretching' non-anamorphic DVDs. Although the Oppo doesn't really handle the latter all that well, and my new display has that capability, so I may try doing that with the HD-A1 this weekend.
 

Chris Dugger

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Well...

Let me say that I am using HDMI - DVI-D.

I am projecting onto a 12 foot screen...

The upconversion has been nothing less than spectacular.....

No color space issues (except Transporter 2) and de-interlace hasn't shown issues....

Using firmware 2.0.....

Dugger
 

Michael TLV

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Greetings

Color space thing is an SD issue on the Toshiba. When outputting 480 ... it uses 601 color space and when it goes to HD res ... it choses 709 color space. The HD DVD stuff gets real 709 color space as intended.

So it might be a programming choice or oversight. The player can clearly do 601 ... and 709.

Something Joe Kane discovered and tested for at the Advanced Seminar in Denver during Cedia ... (2.0 firmware ... they upgraded the player on the spot there.)

Upconverting SD to an HD signal type does not give it an HD color palette all of a sudden. It still has an SD color palette.

Bottom line ... annoying ... but if you don't know what to look for ... you may never notice. Does green look green to you or yellow green? (Joe was feeding it the proper test patterns and he had a DLP projector that could manually switch between the two color spaces ...)

(oh yes ... chroma bug ... here too.)

All this in no way says anything about the image not being pleasing to the eye ... heck even a super blue uncalibrated image can look pleasing to the eye of the uninitiated.

Regards
 

Dave H

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Michael,

The HD-A1 does not have color space issues when upscaling using HDMI to HDMI. There have been issues with DVI. This has been confirmed by Stacy Spears and others actually. You can even see it doesn't when comparing the DVE color bars at 480p component to 1080i HDMI....they are of identical color.
 

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