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Master Geek


Topic # 123299 2-Jul-2013 17:42
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Hi
I do not get DVB-T reception where I live so currently rely on Sky HD for all our TV viewing.   I am looking at getting a DVB-S Receiver so that I can use this to watch the free to view channels when the kids a watching something on Sky.   I know that Freeview DVB-S is only 576i however I have seen some receivers advertised such as the DishTV Satbox Ultra S7090 which say that they upscale the picture to 1080p.  Can anyone who has tried one of these boxes or something similar comment on how good the upscaled picture is.

The other thing that I was looking at was TV streaming boxes.  I have seen the HDHomeRun boxes and have only seen a DVB-T version for NZ.   I came across the MOI Sat TV Streaming Box from TBS http://www.tbsdtv.com/launch/moi-dvb-s2-streaming-box.html.    It says that you can connect this to your satellite connection and connect it to your router to stream live TV to your PC, iPad, iPhone, Mac book, Notebook, Sony Playstation 3, Smartphone etc.  It can also be set up to work with XBMC.    Has anyone tried one of these and can confirm whether this would work here in NZ.
Cheers
Richard

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  Reply # 848376 2-Jul-2013 18:31
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Don't waste your time.

The picture quality on Freeview DVB-S is average at best. Upscaling will make very little difference.


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Reply # 848379 2-Jul-2013 18:38
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you wont get the same answer from many people.  I have the S7090pvr and an Ultraplus x-9200hd.  Both do an excellent job of upscaling to a full HD Sony 32inch tv.  Honestly cant see the difference betwween those and the MagicTV 3700.  I cant say for anything larger than 32 inch but its highly likely there will be a noticeable difference on larger screens.  A lot of it is personal preference so no two people will have the same perceptions.




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  Reply # 848565 3-Jul-2013 09:34
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I have installed a dozen or so satellite set top boxes for family and friends, and not one of them has produced as good a picture as my Home Theatre PC. If you have a quality graphics card and use a quality program like DVBViewer, with DVBViewer Recording Service, it automatically upscales to the resolution of your screen. What's more, if you install a twin DVB-S card, or two single DVB-S cards, it is possible to record all Freeview channels simultaneously with DVBViewer. Of course, with NZ programing, I can't imagine why anybody could possibly want to do that, but at least you have the capacity to! I can't think of a single dual tuner set top box PVR that can do that. On top of that, you can have access to all the streaming video resources of the internet.

Tim
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  Reply # 848567 3-Jul-2013 09:35
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Your TV will upscale the picture to match its resolution anyway.

Which do you think will upscale better, your expensive TV or cheap satellite receiver....?

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  Reply # 848586 3-Jul-2013 10:04
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illicit: Your TV will upscale the picture to match its resolution anyway.

Which do you think will upscale better, your expensive TV or cheap satellite receiver....?


As far as I am aware, and correct me please if I am wrong. The TV will generally display the picture from the HDMI "as it comes". All the TV will do is upscale (re-size) the picture to fit on the screen. It will not do any sort of magic by inserting missing pixels.

DVD's in a standard DVD player for example will play at their original resolution. Your TV will not convert them to 1080p or even 720p. Maybe the newer TV's now have up scaling?

A device which is advertised as "up scaling", generally has a chip which converts the picture signal to a higher resolution like 1080p,

We have a DVD player which "upscales" to 1080p. There is a huge difference when watching the same DVD on the same TV with upscaling turned on/off on the DVD player. I have tested it.



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  Reply # 848724 3-Jul-2013 13:22
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You cant 'insert' pixels that weren't there to begin with - that would indeed be 'magic'.

If your TV is 1080 - it will upscale all input signals that are of a lower resolution, otherwise they wouldn't fill the screen.

I install AV equipment all every day - nine times out of ten, your TV will perform better upscaling than a STB or DVD etc

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  Reply # 848734 3-Jul-2013 13:35
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illicit: You cant 'insert' pixels that weren't there to begin with - that would indeed be 'magic'.

If your TV is 1080 - it will upscale all input signals that are of a lower resolution, otherwise they wouldn't fill the screen.

I install AV equipment all every day - nine times out of ten, your TV will perform better upscaling than a STB or DVD etc


I think you getting mixed up between up scaling and resizing.

My TV (2012 Sony Bravia) will re size an image to fit on the screen. It will do nothing to improve the resolution of the picture. Ie, a 480p image will still be displayed as 480p (just full screen).

But, when using the upscaling feature on the DVD player, the image is upscaled to 1080p.

Here is an example as to how I understand it works.



Image at the bottom is what will be displayed on your High Definition TV if playing it through a standard DVD player.

Image at the top has been manipulated to HD-1080i. You can see the difference.

My Sony Bravia does not do this. Unless I am missing something and there is a hided setting somewhere that enables the up scaling via the HDMI port?

Sony PS3 also does fantastic up scaling to DVD's.

But Im no expert. I can however see the difference on my TV between 480p and 1080p.

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  Reply # 848755 3-Jul-2013 13:44
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Hi,

I used to work with satellite images. You can enhance satellite images by up scaling to make a smoother image. Mathematical algorithms are used to calculate a pixel's value based on the value of those pixels in a certain surrounding neighbourhood. You can't add new information to the picture, you are just reprocessing it based on existing  information, using an "averaging" process. It makes a smoother, less jagged looking picture. Nothing magic about it. It's all based on some fairly simple mathematics.

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  Reply # 849051 4-Jul-2013 08:20
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Klipspringer:

I think you getting mixed up between up scaling and resizing.

My TV (2012 Sony Bravia) will re size an image to fit on the screen. It will do nothing to improve the resolution of the picture. Ie, a 480p image will still be displayed as 480p (just full screen).


You cant 'resize' a 480 picture to fill a 1080 screen without upscaling it - basically it is being 'chopped' into smaller pieces (pixels) to match the screen it is on.

Your graphic is misleading also - it shows two very different image qualities, no upscaling on earth could produce the top picture if given the bottom one as a source.

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  Reply # 849055 4-Jul-2013 08:33
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You can't polish a turd.

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  Reply # 849081 4-Jul-2013 09:19
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Sorry, rather blunt response there, but to expand on this:

1) Yes there is a difference between upscaling and resizing but also fundamentally they are the same thing.
Resizing is the most basic form of upscaling. The nicest way to do it is to use some mathematics algorithms to try and interpolate what the natural pixel betwen these two would have been, taking into account colour and 'brightness' values.

2) Your TV can only ever display one resolution physically. As in it has so many pixel on the screen, so no matter what you feed it, it will scale it to fit the available pixels it has to play with. The big question is, will it stretch your image nicely or not.

3) Freeview is broadcast fairly roughly via satellite, meaning there's not actually a lot of information (low bit rate) to play with. Whilst there is always opportunities to try and improve the picture, in my experience you suffer all the negative effects of over sharpening.  For a quick example of this, take a look here

Your results may vary, and as I usually say on this topic, if you buy a freeview box that offers sharpening then try it out. It's your TV and your eyes, so there's nothing wrong with settling with whichever settings you want to use. However, I personally wouldn't pay more for a box simply to obtain upscaling functionality, as I envariably turn it off and use the picture controls within the TV to improve the picture instead.

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  Reply # 849084 4-Jul-2013 09:27
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Jaxson: You can't polish a turd.


Sorry, not related to original post but re polishing a turd, check this out.


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  Reply # 849093 4-Jul-2013 09:36

Either the satellite box has to up convert the 576i to 1080i/1080p or the tv does the job.
Personally, I would get the satellite box with HDMI out. My reasons are:

- Digital connection to the tv (avoids the D-A and A-D on the way).

- Sharper menu/graphics from the HD satellite decoder (HD created graphics look better than SD ones).

- Future proofed. If NZ ever adopts better tech for satellite transmission of Freeview, or Sky unencrypt the FTA HD channels, you will be able to get them with a DVB-S2/HD/MPEG4 box. (Or if an Australian channel accidentally ends up on a NZ satellite beam again).

Edit: so you can polish a turd, (still a turd though!), awesome.




don't mess with me.... i'm the hd insider....

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  Reply # 849117 4-Jul-2013 10:13
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illicit:
You cant 'resize' a 480 picture to fill a 1080 screen without upscaling it - basically it is being 'chopped' into smaller pieces (pixels) to match the screen it is on.


The resizing you are talking about does nothing to try and improve the image quality. If you can’t resize a picture without up scaling it? How come I can upscale a picture without changing its size? Surely both should be the same?

Obviously you can’t really create a better picture from nothing. But the upscaling techniques in these devices all differ. They all aim to try and better the image quality by mathematically creating estimates. Sometimes it works, sometimes not. Sometimes all it will do is improve the flaws in a picture, ie make it look more grainier. This process will never be as good as true recorded 1080p, and it may look better on some picture types than others (ie. Works really well for games which play at 480, cartoons are another example where the up scaling techniques can work really well). Some DVD’s will look worse. But it depends on the content. Something like Shrek works really well upscaled. And the difference is huge when watching it upscale to 1080p (upscaling by the DVD player) compared to native DVD resolution just plugged into the TV.

Overall however. I find it works most of the time. And personally I would rather have it than not have it. There is a reason why up scaling is put into DVD players today, and why the PS3 for example has it.

So coming back to your point. Yes I think you can re-size a picture without up scaling it. But I think we just have different definitions of what upscaling is. (and actually Im not sure anymore myself) I see it as resizing if necessary, but at the same time its a process which mathematically tries to improve image quality. Up scaling can work without increasing the size of the image too (resizing). I can run an up scaled DVD 1080p on my TV, and I can run it on my TV at 480p. Both full screen. Only one is up scaled.


illicit:
Your graphic is misleading also - it shows two very different image qualities, no upscaling on earth could produce the top picture if given the bottom one as a source.


It was an example. Showing the size of the different pictures (same size), different resolutions.

There are plenty of other side by side comparisons on the web.

Interesting discussion this.

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