I know nothing about DVD's

Discussion in 'The Barracks' started by Fox, Dec 5, 2003.

  1. Renegade

    Renegade Retired Captain

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2003
    Messages:
    656
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    Berwick, Victoria, Australia
    I don't have any problems with Macrovision encoding as i don't run the DVD player through the VCR.
     
  2. Fox

    Fox Clown Administrator Administrator Moderator

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2003
    Messages:
    12,447
    Likes Received:
    578
    Location:
    Brisbane, Australia
    I'm very happy with it. I've watched a few rental DVD's and "The Two Towers" plus a less-than-legit DVD from Asia but don't tell anyone I said that.

    Macrovision - without me going back through this thread, how can I tell? I have my DVD player hooked up to my VCR and to watch a movie, I need to press the AV button on my VCR to switch to the DVD channel. Quality is perfect. Does that help?

    Region Free - I'm told it's mulit-region but I haven't tested it. I've only played region 4 plus the less-than-legit. It claims to be region 1 but with those discs, you can never be sure what they've done to it. RCE disks - I can't say I've seen one. Soz. Ask me again in 6 months. :roll:

    Bad CD's - I've got one with light surface scratches and I don't have any issues with it. The rentals are usually less than perfect but they've been faultless. I haven't seen a single pixellation or freeze yet.

    Layers - This depends on the DVD so yeh - I've noticed but only just. I don't need to tell you that where that cut is made can make a difference on how much it is noticed. It is so miniscule on my Sony that I don't even talk about it.

    If you have a 51cm in the bedroom, what do you use in your living room? :)
     
  3. Derelict

    Derelict Retired Administrator

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2002
    Messages:
    7,815
    Likes Received:
    167
    Location:
    Brisbane, Australia
    I bought an LG LH-C6231 All-in-one super cappuchino machine in the post Christmas Sales.

    It does:
    - CD
    - VCD
    - DVD
    - VHS
    - Radio
    - MP3
    - JPEG
    - all in "glorious" 5.1 DTS Dolby Digital Surround Sound...

    Not bad huh? :)
     
  4. Quant

    Quant Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2003
    Messages:
    476
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Melbourne, VIC, Australia
    LotR Two Towers is encoded in Macrovision.

    If your DVD plays THROUGH your VCR (ie. L-1 or Video-1 on your VCR input selector) into the back of your TV, stick a blank video tape in your VCR and press record for about a minute some scenery from Middle Earth.

    Then replay the recorded footage on your VCR.

    If the picture pulses light and dark, you are witnessing the magic of Macrovision!

    Basically it tweaks your Automatic gain control up and down. Your TV ignores it, but the VCR locks onto the pulsing signal automatically tries to adjust to maintain optimal picture brightness as it records it onto the magnetic tape.

    This changing signal is injected into the video feed by your DVD player, it is NOT encoded in your disk.

    So having a player Macrovision free is a must if you ever want to play through your VCR or through a TV Projector.

    I think they have stopped using RCE encoding, but there is no way to tell. Interestingly enough, there are a fair number of Region 4 NTSC disks (eg. Clash of the Titans) released in Australia and the ability to cope with NTSC (Never Twice the Same Colour) video standard is an important feature.

    My living room has the Panasonic 76cm 100Hz Widescreen TV.

    Was my big purchase of 2002 after living with the 34cm Kitchen TV for six months after the Sharp 63cm TV finally died.

    I expect my next TV to be a Plasma screen. :)
     
  5. Quant

    Quant Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2003
    Messages:
    476
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Melbourne, VIC, Australia
    And the price?
     
  6. Derelict

    Derelict Retired Administrator

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2002
    Messages:
    7,815
    Likes Received:
    167
    Location:
    Brisbane, Australia
    $570 I seem to recall...
     
  7. Quant

    Quant Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2003
    Messages:
    476
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Melbourne, VIC, Australia
    Anyone have any experience or thoughts on the following Sony player?

    Sony DVPNC615 for A$250-00.
    (Clearance Price - was $499 save 50%)

    Features include MP3 Playback, with Twin Laser Pick-Up provides the sharpest picture and clearest sound, Multi Disc Resume (memory to 6 discs) and Dynamic Tilt Compensation ensures exceptional laser accuracy for the clearest RF Signal, even with warped or scratched discs
    5 Disc DVD Player

    Colour: Black

    - DVD Video, DVD+R, Video CD, DVD-R/RW (Video Mode)
    - CD, CD-R/RW & MP3 Playback
    - Digital Video Enhancer
    - Multi Disc Resume
    - Precision Drive 2 Mechanism
    - Twin Laser Pick up
    - Dynamic Tilt Compensation
    - Block Noise Reduction
    - Custom Picture Modes
    - Advanced Smooth Scan
    - Multi Mode Playback Dial on Front Panel
    - Multi Brand TV Remote Control
    - Control Bar
    - Instant Replay
    - Quick Set Up

    The only difference I can see is the new model Sony DVPNC625B for A$349-00. (Was RRP $429 Save $80-00) has DTS output.

    Is DTS worth the extra A$99?
     
  8. Renegade

    Renegade Retired Captain

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2003
    Messages:
    656
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    Berwick, Victoria, Australia
    DTS

    Only the fact that a lot of movies and Music Videos are coming out with DTS.

    Eagles - Hell Freezes Over is only in stereo or DTS. (I have Dolby Digital so can only play in stereo :cry: )
     
  9. Quant

    Quant Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2003
    Messages:
    476
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Melbourne, VIC, Australia
    Good Point.

    My existing Hitekker DVD player has DTS, so if I buy a more expensive branded DVD player it should also be able to decode DTS.

    I might have to think about buying a Home Theatre System so I have the speakers to benefit from DTS, although this is starting to get expensive for a bedroom system. :?
     
  10. Fox

    Fox Clown Administrator Administrator Moderator

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2003
    Messages:
    12,447
    Likes Received:
    578
    Location:
    Brisbane, Australia
    For the record, I tried to record a dvd through my VCR and it didn't work.

    That's a Sony model. :cry:

    I think that means it has Macrovision. The screen flickered and went bright and dark and black and static and back to bright and all over the place.

    I'm cool with that though.
     
  11. Renegade

    Renegade Retired Captain

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2003
    Messages:
    656
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    Berwick, Victoria, Australia
    Hey,

    welcome to the world of macrovision.

    I wonder if you can record on a VCR that came out before all the anti pirating software got stuffed into these things. (not that i would break the law, nor condone it)
     
  12. Dars183

    Dars183 Retired Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 18, 2003
    Messages:
    4,235
    Likes Received:
    84
    Location:
    Perth W. Aust
    Find yourself a nice little Digitial Time Base Corrector and your worries will be over :) or if you have another VHS machine loop it through that and it will sometimes fix the problem.
    This is only for making VHS back up copies of your DVDs of course.
     
  13. Quant

    Quant Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2003
    Messages:
    476
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Melbourne, VIC, Australia
    The corrector boxes cost about $100, so its not a great solution for the occasional connection through the VCR.

    Will have to try the double VCR Trick to see if it makes a difference.

    Interesting thing is Dick Smith Electronics (aka Woolworths) is selling their own branded DSE DVD/VCR/Home Theatre 3in1 for $497

    (Slightly different from Dero's in that it includes the Suround Sound Speakers as well as the receiver)

    It has clearly on the box you can dub DVD to VCR with Macrovision off!

    Features are:
    50W x 6 to 5 speakers and 1 passive subwoofer
    5.1channel DVD, HiFi Stereo VCR, FM Tuner
    DTS digital surround, 5.1 Dolby Digital⁄Pro-Logic II, Digital Amplifier
    Component Video output (Y, Cr, Cb) for best connection to component video compatible TV
    2 Digital inputs (STB, PS2 etc)
    1 Digital output
    2 Audio⁄Video inputs, 1 Audio⁄Video output
    FM Tuner
    Hi-Fi Stereo VCR with built in TV tuner
    Timer Recording
    Digital Zoom function
    10bit, 27MHz video DAC
    Plays DVD+R, DVD+RW, DVD-R, DVD-RW, CD-R, CD-RW, MP3, WMA, and VHS
    Multi Zone (Regional code free) Solution is very simple as follows : -

    By using Remote control,

    1.Push Open button
    2.Push Clear button
    3.Push digit 4577
    4.Push Clear button
    5.Push Close button

    This maybe the thing to buy! Comments?
     
  14. Quant

    Quant Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2003
    Messages:
    476
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Melbourne, VIC, Australia
    They haven't made VCRs without Automatic Gain Control for over twenty years, so getting a VCR which is immune to Macrovision is pretty much impossible.

    It would be easier to buy the box which suppresses the varying brightness pulse injected by Macrovision.
     
  15. Major_Mess

    Major_Mess Retired Captain

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2003
    Messages:
    762
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    Oatley, Sydney
    Quant, what are you going to use for sound instead? The TV?

    If you have an amp/receiver with dts(or Dolby Digital) decoding you don't need it on a DVD player, the stream is simply passed via digital to the amp for processing.

    The decoding on a DVD Player gives 6 Audio outs requiring 3 stereo amps, or an analogue amp with 5 or 6 analog inputs on the amp.

    I scored a set of Logitech Z680(505watt true RMS) 5.1 speakers/amp for Christmas. They are awsome, with a very flat frequency response. They have full Dobly digital and DTS decoding along with an optical and a digital input, 6 channel analogue input and one stereo input. I have them on my main PC, but they would be a great result for the bedroom system, or for any home theatre setup (Tho, after hearing them they would probably end up on your PC, and not in the bedroom :wink: ).

    I am not sure of the retail (I got them wholesale). If you are interested do a search and there are heaps of reviews. Ring around for pricing in Melbourne. If they are too much, I could probably get you a set for about $600, though there would be freight and the box is heavy.

    As for buying a DVD player I advise people to get one of the cheaper brands. There used to be a difference in the video out of the cheaper ones but they all have the same 27MHz DAC for video output (though top end and progressive scan sets use 54MHz). To see any real difference in the players you would need to go to a high end $800+ unit, but you would need a high quality display device as well. The cheaper ones usually handle more non standard mpeg resolutions and formats as well. Something else I highly recommend is MPEG4(Divx) decoding. You can then play back ripped DVD's ect from CD, or several divx movies on one DVDR if you have access to a burner. There are quite a few MPEG4 compatible units now(Strathfield car Radio have one for $188 at the moment, which is the cheapest I have seen). Also there are a lot of oem hardware encoding/decoding chips around now which will start to become common in consumer devices. I think JVC have a camcorder recording in MPEG4, out at the moment.

    For my puchase a couple of years ago, the ability to disable Macrovision was a priority (Old CRT Projector which is non Macrovision friendly). I searched on the web for a unit with hacked firmware and settled on the Magnavox MDVD100 from KMart, which uses a standard IDE DVD rom interface and has lots of custom work done on the firmware(There is a Yahoo group - One Firmware for all). Just burn the firmware to a CDRW and boot the unit from it

    When I bought the unit it was capable of DVD, VCD, MP3 with composite, svideo, and a scart plug supplying RGB to my projector. Since all the firmware upgrades it now also handles Kodak PhotoCD and Jpegs, is Macrovision free, now has component out via scart, and you can load your own background wallpapers.

    This old article was that lead me to the unit.http://www.nerd-out.com/darrenk/magnavox_mdvd-100/MDVD-100.htm

    I am not sure of any current DVD players that have customised firmware like this, but there probably is.

    Another option for the bedroom (and the one I use) is a networked PC beside the bed. I have been recording TV for ages via a capture card, and have now just added a Digital TV PC card to the lounge room HTPC. This, along with ripped DVD's etc is all viewable from the bedroom PC. A pair of ear bud headphones and I am not disturbing my partner. The bedroom PC has a $30 6channel sound card and VGA with good quality composite video out to the TV in the room. The sound is only hooked up to four speakers via two hifi amps. One of which has the old analog Dolby Surround, which is shared by the rear speakers on either side of the bed and is all that is needed for stereo only sources. The advantages of this setup are access to all the various audio and video formats, the web, and anything you normally do on a PC. :)

    To control it I have the keyboard beside the bed and the mouse and monitor on the beside table. generally the keyboard is not used and I have setup an internal web site with links to most places I want to surf to. Another option for control is to use a remote via a frontend such as myHTPC. Having a HTPC frontend also makes it easy to use without a monitor and just the TV.
     
  16. HellDad

    HellDad Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 4, 2003
    Messages:
    1,574
    Likes Received:
    48
    Location:
    Como.Sydney.NSW.Australia
    MM, have you scheduled the operation yet? You know the one I mean, where you have an optical decoder chip surgically implanted in the back of your skull, hook up the optical cable to your bedside interface box, then just lay back, close your eyes, think your code phrase (eg "England") and get high quality video and audio on the direct brain link. Gets rid of all that stuff cluttering up your bedroom. :)

    OK so maybe I'm a bit jealous
     
  17. Major_Mess

    Major_Mess Retired Captain

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2003
    Messages:
    762
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    Oatley, Sydney
    Of course I have! But its only coaxial SPDIF, the Toslink interface was unavailable at the time. :p
     
  18. Zlipzlop

    Zlipzlop Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2003
    Messages:
    627
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    Aldebaran system
    I guess reading a book before crashing out is just so passe! :D
     

Share This Page