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On Projectors and Video Signal Formats...

So.. having bought a projector, and realizing Oh My God, I coulda done this sooner...
... and realizing that there were like two things that were bugging me about the BenQ PB6100, namely: I could see the pixels very clearly, and not quite so bright...
... i returned the one that I bought, and traded up for a more expensive model, which came in today. BenQ PB7200 -- more of the same goodness.

Compared to the 6100, I'm getting:
- 1024x768 instead of 800x600. at the lower res, i was VERY pixel conscious.
- Component input cable included.
- Brighter

I'm loosing:
- 2000 hrs/bulb instead of 3000. Equates to $0.25/hour or so instead of $0.20/hr.
- A simple remote that had what was needed on it. New remote is muy complex and all the commonly used buttons are akward.
- Picture In Picture.
- A Sizable Chunk of Money.

So, now that I had several options on how to get video signal from DVD to the projector, I started experimenting. (I actually took pictures of each of them.. if you want to see them, i can post somewhere. I have not yet looked at the pics to see if the differences are visible or not.)

Bottom of the List: Composite Video. Ye old standard Yellow RCA Plug. Does its job well. Not so great when projected onto a big screen. There's a complicated writeup somewhere on the internet that talks about what they've done to the video signal.. its honestly quite amazing that it looks even slightly recognizable. Didja know that only about 5-10% of the signal bandwidth is used for transmitting the color blue, if that? Mostly Green and Red are transmitted. Our eyes are built that way. Oh, found it .. poke around here.

S-Video. Better. Could see more picture definition, wasn't as smudged. seemed to be a pixel difference compared to composite, which didn't make sense, but i guess could be.

Component Video (YPbPr). Even Better. (Non-progressive-scan player)

What I saw as differences between Component and S-Video:
- no resolution difference. Same number of pixels rendered in the same places.
- definitely a color difference, especially when things were dark. I used LOTR Hobbits In Woods With Dark Rider scene.. the colors were more vivid with Component Video.

Then, I tried putting the DVD in the Laptop, and hooked the laptop's VGA to the projector.

Windows Media Player: pissed me off. It kept switching the resolution down to 800x600, probably because the video stream is like 720x480, so it figured: why overscale the resolution? Except, then the 800x600 signal gets reinterpretted at 1024x768. Better than Component video at this point, but I kept playing...

PowerDVD: Oooooh it was beautiful. PowerDVD went into fullscreen mode at 1024x768.. and it _appears_ to have intelligent video scaling algorithms built in! I LOOKED and LOOKED for source pixelation, and simply could not find any! .. well, okay, some of the hair was a little smudgy, but HEY.

So, if I have guests over... and I show a movie.. i'lll probably use PowerDVD on the Laptop to drive the show. Yep. For that i'll need to get a VGA extension cable.. not a problem

For just me at home, though -- Svideo is fine. heh, the PS-2 only does Composite out anyway. :]


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