Hi, Just replaced my Sony HS 20 projector with an Epson 9700. Awesome Blu Ray & 720 imaging. However 1080i is borderline bad with image noise, image trails, especially during sports or live concerts. I spoke with the North American rep for Epson and he's basically telling me that the projector is so good that it's exposing the over compression and down right dirty cable send from my cable provider. I've been told that the DTV send is less compressed and overall better with regard to overall image quality.
Can anyone here provide me with a comparison chart of signal strength, etc... I need to do something to justify to my wife my recent expenditures. She basically can't comprehend how the projector is so good that it exposes bad 1080i cable image...
I have DIRECTV and I had TWC (and we have it work) and DTV is WAAYYYYY better than TWC. However, I still don't think 1080i should look that bad even with TWC so I'm not sure I'm buying their story either to be honest.
I don't buy the Epson rep's explanation. I've had a 1080p Sanyo projector for a couple years now and watch TW cable all the time. Granted my receiver upscales everything to 1080p but I've rarely seen any picture issues ... it mostly looks great. I've seen other cable systems (non-satellite) and TW is better than any others I've seen as far as raw quality. A well-calibrated projector should make TW cable look pretty good (the HD stuff at least).
I had initially purchased the Epson 9350 and had the same issue with noise @ 1080i. Blu Ray and 720p looked great. I flipped it out for the next model up (Epson Pro Cinema 9700) which was just released a few months ago, Same issue with 1080i. Over at the AVS forum there is a dedicated thread with regard to this model. The guy who started it has DTV and claims he's never had an issue like I've described. He was the one who initially spoke of the issue of picture noise with cable. I also spoke with a TWC tech rep and he basically admitted to me that it was becoming an issue as displays became better and bigger. I have also tried every setting my pre-pro offers. 1080i, 1080p, passthrough, auto, and now 720p. Now, 720p solved my issue and cleaned things up visually but I am perplexed mentally if you know what I mean. To the above poster speaking of OTA, does that mean Over The Air? What is it exactly and how do I get it? Hit the link below and scroll down a bit till you see the screenshots of halftime. This was a setting called Vivid which was also calibrated by me to an extent.
To the above poster speaking of OTA, does that mean Over The Air? What is it exactly and how do I get it?
Yes, OTA=Over The Air. You would need an OTA digital (often called ATSC) tuner that would output in HD to your projector (over HDMI, DVI or component), since the projector doesn't have a tuner built in. Although there have been a few standalone tuners produced, they're hard to find. It's better to get one that works with a computer and use the computer to send the video to the projector. You'll also need a fairly good all-channel outdoor antenna to get the major Albany channels, which are about 28 miles SSW from you and not quite line-of-sight (LOS). WNYT has a repeater on ch. 18 which is only 15 miles SSE and LOS from you, and WYPX on ch. 50 is 22 miles W and also LOS. Plug in your location (Zip+4 should do) at www.tvfool.com to see details; I used 12866 for the figures above.
If you have another TV with a digital tuner or even one of the digital converters that the government was giving out coupons for a while back, you can use it with an antenna to see what you can get before spending a lot on a tuner. If you do buy a tuner, look for one that does both OTA or ATSC (the correct term is 8VSB but you'll never see that in the ads) and clear QAM (for the unencrypted digital channels on cable). You might find that you get a better quality picture on the broadcast channels that your cable carries by connecting such a tuner directly to your cable than your company-provided tuner gives you. And you have the advantage that all computer-based tuners allow you to record programs on the computer's hard drive in full HD quality. Just don't expect to get more than the broadcast channels from cable that way. Most cable companies encrypt almost everything else.