Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 24th Feb 2012 21:59 UTC
Multimedia, AV An interesting anecdote at MinimalMac about television being broken. The author's young daughter, who is growing up in a Netflix/Hulu/iTunes/etc. household, was confronted with actual TV for the first time, and wonders why she can't pick what to watch, why the shows are being interrupted all the time, and so on. Clearly - TV is broken.
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RE: DVD Quality
by ilovebeer on Sat 25th Feb 2012 19:57 UTC in reply to "DVD Quality"
ilovebeer
Member since:
2011-08-08

If you have a decent upscaler in your TV (like I do), you can barely see the difference between 1080 and DVD.

You should know there's a massive difference between upscaling something and comparing it against the source you upscaled from, and comparing DVD with native 1080p...

Upscaling (and for that matter, transcoding anything to higher bitrates) will _never_ improve quality. The absolute best you can hope for is the same as your source.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: DVD Quality
by galvanash on Sat 25th Feb 2012 20:34 in reply to "RE: DVD Quality"
galvanash Member since:
2006-01-25

Upscaling (and for that matter, transcoding anything to higher bitrates) will _never_ improve quality. The absolute best you can hope for is the same as your source.


Sorry, but that is simply not true in all cases. Upscaling (as the OP was using the term) has nothing at all to do with bitrate or improving the quality of the source material - it is about preparing it as best as possible for the screen it will be presented on.

Most older HD TVs simply enlarge the lower resolution image of a DVD to fit the screen size by performing simple block scaling. This works but generally looks horrible, and the larger the screen the worse it looks.

TVs or DVD players that perform "upscaling" are using much more sophisticated interpolation algorithms to perform the scaling, as well as usually performing motion compensation to correct issues that arise during scene transitions, etc.

Also, if you are preparing DVD material for display on a 1080p screen, transcoding it to 1080p resolution can improve the picture quality relative to the original DVD - it depends on the TV it will be displayed on. It isn't a matter of bitrate, it is simply compensating for poor scaling circuitry in the TV. Granted, most current HDTVs have very good scaling performance - but if you have an older one the difference can be quite dramatic.

Just saying, it is not always pointless.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: DVD Quality
by ilovebeer on Sun 26th Feb 2012 07:50 in reply to "RE[2]: DVD Quality"
ilovebeer Member since:
2011-08-08

Upscaling (and for that matter, transcoding anything to higher bitrates) will _never_ improve quality. The absolute best you can hope for is the same as your source.

Sorry, but that is simply not true in all cases. Upscaling (as the OP was using the term) has nothing at all to do with bitrate or improving the quality of the source material - it is about preparing it as best as possible for the screen it will be presented on.

Any time you have movement, bitrate becomes a factor (as done a number of other things). The OP suggested there's no difference between his source material, and his upscaled version. The only problem is that it's not possible. Quality can be presented in two ways -- as interpreted by the viewer, and mathematically. Maybe the OP really can't see any difference due to poor eyesight. But, mathematically the statement is false.

Most older HD TVs simply enlarge the lower resolution image of a DVD to fit the screen size by performing simple block scaling. This works but generally looks horrible, and the larger the screen the worse it looks.

This is correct.

TVs or DVD players that perform "upscaling" are using much more sophisticated interpolation algorithms to perform the scaling, as well as usually performing motion compensation to correct issues that arise during scene transitions, etc.

Some do, most don't. Regardless of the scaling method used, there are none which don't degrade or malform the image in some way. The absolute best scalers available are not immune to this.

Also, if you are preparing DVD material for display on a 1080p screen, transcoding it to 1080p resolution can improve the picture quality relative to the original DVD - it depends on the TV it will be displayed on.

The above is both a common misconception, and complete rubbish. There is no magic algorithm by which otherwise absent quality appears out of thin air. Some people fool themselves into believing what you've suggested, but as I've stated earlier the math always proves false.

It isn't a matter of bitrate, it is simply compensating for poor scaling circuitry in the TV. Granted, most current HDTVs have very good scaling performance - but if you have an older one the difference can be quite dramatic.

We're not talking about a single still frame so yes, bitrate is most certainly one of many determining factors in quality here. It's not as if any of this is a secret. No two people see the exact same image. No two people see exactly the same colors. As you can guess the differences can greatly vary. When someone says there's no visible difference, they should acknowledge it's from their perspective only.

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: DVD Quality
by lucas_maximus on Mon 27th Feb 2012 11:48 in reply to "RE: DVD Quality"
lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

I appreciate it doesn't improve the actual quality. However it improved the perceivable quality.

i.e. if the DVD was merely stretched to fit, it would look terrible, However the upscaler makes it look almost as good as Hi-Def. I can barely see the difference between DVD of Predator and Predator Blu-ray ... I was quite surprised.

While it isn't better quality in a mathematical sense this fact is simply academic.

My existing DVD media looks more than good enough on my Hi-Definition TV ... so I get the best of both worlds.

1) I don't have to replace my existing DVDs (since they look more than good enough).
2) I can enjoy Hi-def content.

Edited 2012-02-27 11:55 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: DVD Quality
by ilovebeer on Mon 27th Feb 2012 16:47 in reply to "RE[2]: DVD Quality"
ilovebeer Member since:
2011-08-08

I can barely see the difference between DVD of Predator and Predator Blu-ray ... I was quite surprised.

You do realize that Predator isn't exactly a great movie to use for reference or comparison right? The absolute best version of Predator available is the Hunter digital remaster and even that doesn't provide any huge leaps in quality.

There are a number of far better sources to use (the Lost tv series for example). This is a heavily discussed topic, it would be interesting to see how great you think your upscaler does when you're comparing material with significant difference in quality.

No I didn't, I said I couldn't see the difference, this is a massive difference from there actually being a difference.

See my comments about perceived quality, and note "There is no magic algorithm by which otherwise absent quality appears out of thin air.".

If you see no difference between an upscaled DVD and the bluray counterpart, you need to pick better quality material for comparison. As mentioned earlier, Predator is known to have less than stellar quality on bluray.

Reply Parent Score: 2