High Def Forum
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HDTV vs DVD picture

avigh
07-07-2005, 11:26 AM
Dear friends:
As I contemplate a purchase of HDTV with direct TV I am curious if I could get some opinions regarding picture quality of HD vs DVD. Is the picture incrementally better in which one has to look somewhat closely to notice the differences or is it obviously superior? Try to be honest realizing you have already spent big $ for HD. Obviously sports channels and OTA broadcasts are exempt.
THanks,
AV

gnichola
07-07-2005, 11:31 AM
Hands down HD wins.. Thats my 2 cents.

Scuby
07-07-2005, 12:01 PM
Yes, the HD has a much higher resolution than a progressive scan DVD. They do make some DVD players that have up-conversion capability. These scale up the resolution to HD standards (on an HD capable television). DVD's offer a nice picture, but HD is so crisp and clear its like looking out a window...

grb
07-07-2005, 02:05 PM
To me, the big difference between DVD PQ and HD PQ is that images (including people) appear to be almost 3-dimensional in HD. And the colors are deeper, truer and more lifelike. DVD PQ can be very good with upconversion, etc., but a good HD picture is definitely better.

I have a 60" Sony RP LCD and I think that the differences are more noticeable on a larger screen. My $.02...

holtzd
07-07-2005, 02:43 PM
From what Iíve seen when comparing movies broadcast in HD to a progressive scan DVD player I donít see a huge difference. I know that HD has more lines of resolution but the difference just doesnít show through when watching movies. Most of the time I donít see any difference. Iím only speaking of movies here. Discovery HD does look breathtaking compared to DVD.

brismit
07-07-2005, 03:17 PM
From what Iíve seen when comparing movies broadcast in HD to a progressive scan DVD player I donít see a huge difference. I know that HD has more lines of resolution but the difference just doesnít show through when watching movies. Most of the time I donít see any difference. Iím only speaking of movies here. Discovery HD does look breathtaking compared to DVD.
Most (probably all) the movies that are being broadcast in HD are just being upconverted. Until they start releasing HD DVD/Blu-Ray, ect, they will be standard resolution, upconverted to HD res. You won't see much difference between that and a progressive or upconverting dvd player. Now Discovery HD, that is TRUE HD. Filmed with HD cameras and broadcast in 1080i :D

LJeziak
07-07-2005, 03:33 PM
I have a Sony 46" HDTV and a Toshiba DVD with HDMI that upconverts images to "simulated" HD quality. I watch a LOT of movies and I believe the picture quality is excellent. My HDTV signals come from Comcast; cable movies and sports are excellent, too.

Enjoy

StereodB
07-07-2005, 04:07 PM
I agree that movies dont look as good as Discovery HD, but IMO HDNet movies are far supierior to 480P DVDs. Better color saturation and generally smoother image. I use a highly recommended (DVD Shoot Out)Panasonic progressive through Component cables. DVDs look good but lack realism... HD movies remind me more of film than video... but I am sure that it is also a function of the transfer to HD. my two bits... :hithere:

mirwin101
07-07-2005, 05:32 PM
I figured they were creating an HD master from the original 35 mm film....

pmbtv
07-07-2005, 10:07 PM
It can depend on the source material. I'm a big HD supporter. Bought my Mits 55WS with integrated tuner almost three years ago. It's a big ol CRT, which usually has the truest color of the various displays but a somewhat softer picure. I get my hidef free, from rooftop antenna. Instead of the local PBS channel, we receive the PBS national feed, which is all HD all the time. And most of it is terrific. So is Discovery-HD on Dish Network, which I've seen in several stores. That said, a well-mastered DVD of a movie made in recent years ... or even an older movie ... is going to look pretty darn good when played on an HDTV. In those cases, the average TV watcher isn't going to notice the difference. And, sometimes, even the most critical eye may not be able to notice a significant difference. So, I'm wondering just how good hidef DVDs are gonna look once they hit the market.

couchnit
07-07-2005, 10:13 PM
mirwin is right-- mastering in HD is the common method. For feature films, dramatic episodic TV, what you're more often seeing on SD channels is down-conversion, rather than upconversion on HD channels.

I agree with holtzd. The difference between the overall look of a feature film seen on today's compression artifact-ridden HD broadcast, and a nice progressive-scan DVD (especially one encoded on top-notch equipment, with the variable bit rate having been appropriately tweaked) isn't huge. I also agree with everyone that the travelogue/Discovery stuff shot in native HD is what really shows off the format(s). That's why they always pick that stuff to demo in the stores, rather than running the movie channels. Features/movies are going to be a tougher sell for HD DVD/BluRay.

Try something that I tried-- next time you see a movie on HDNet or HBOHD that you also own on DVD, throw the disc in, sync it up with the broadcast as best you can, and toggle your inputs. You may be surprised how well standard DVD holds up in comparison on many monitors. And more than likely, your DVD was done from a down-conversion of the same HD master.

I think the bottom line is that the next disc format will need to look noticeably BETTER than features seen on HD broadcast to really sell it, rather than "just as good." I'll be first in line to plunk down my $, regardless...

borromini
07-08-2005, 06:37 AM
I've been watching DirecTV's Showtime HD, HBO HD and HDNet Movies for over a year now and on my Sony HS-20's 1386x788-100" diagonal image, you definitely see a difference between those channels and a progressive-scan DVD movie. The resolution increase becomes significant on images projected that large. I agree that HDNet movies look better than Showtime and HBO. However the difference between Showtime/HBO HD and DVDs is still significant. It appears that these differences depend on the display as much as the source signal. Folks with 34" CRT HDTV's don't see as much a difference. The larger the screen, the more noticeable the difference.

RSawdey
07-08-2005, 11:48 AM
I think the bottom line is that the next disc format will need to look noticeably BETTER than features seen on HD broadcast to really sell it, rather than "just as good." I'll be first in line to plunk down my $, regardless...

With broadcast, the bandwidth is limited to 19.3 Mb/s, and a lot of those bits need assigned to Error Correction because of the unrelaiable nature of the transmission. With BluRay, the bandwidth is nearly doubled at 36 Mb/s, and fewer bits of ECC will be needed. :yippee: