View Full Version : Back in the game with a new player

12-30-2013, 09:00 AM
My wife and I moved recently. I dragged along my last (albeit full) cube of laserdiscs with me. My wife asked what I planned to do with them and she suggested I save them to sell in the future as collectibles. I told her most were worthless and I wasn't sure what I was going to do with them. We are talking 30-40 lasers here. They are heavy, expensive to ship, etc. My player, a CLD-D604, is average but always got the job done. It makes a strange noise when starting up and puts an error code on the display. If you shut it off and turn it on, it works just fine. For now.

I'm part of the laserdisc forever group on facebook. It's fun. People that are simply in love with the format. I was once that way. Nostalgia has always played a strong role in my likes of various movies and what not.

I have been slowly eyeballing a new player to get. HLD-X9, the mother of all players, was out of the question. One just sold on ebay for $1600. Way out of my price range. Same for LD-S9, although that is $1000 or less. There is one other player, the CLD-R7G, that has the updated Japanese comb filter (though I'll just be using the RCA cables). A private seller offered me one for $900 delivered. Still too much.

I stumbled across Yahoo Auctions in Japan. Apparently it's pretty popular. I found a CLD-R7G for just over $200. Wow! Recently serviced and cleaned. I bit. Used a bidding service and it cost me just over $300. I'm likely to spend upwards of $200 on shipping, but I'm okay with that. I may even send it to a guy that does service on them in the States and updates some of the parts (better clamp).

Anyone interested in a kinda working CLD-D604?

12-30-2013, 09:11 AM
Funny you mention this, Dave. I just got my new 60" plasma screen today, and was doing all the setups, marveling at the way my Blus looked, etc. Then for grins, I decided to see how LD looked, and I have to say it's not bad! Oddly enough, they look better on my 60" 1080p screen than they did on my 42" 720p screen. I was not expecting that at all. I gotta do more testing, along with some calibration (this was just done on factory settings, haven't done my Video Essentials yet). Really though, LDs are still entirely watchable.

I don't know much about those Japanese players, Dave. How do they compare to some of the higher end American players like the CLD-D704, and Elite 79 and 99?

12-31-2013, 12:22 AM
That's encouraging news. This is often compared to the Elite 99 so it should hold its own pretty well. I too have a new TV that has never seen laser, so I'm anxious to see how it holds up.

I have a handful of the last batch of lasers - Deep Blue Sea, Iron Giant, and a few others. I'll let everyone know how it holds up.

12-31-2013, 12:37 AM
Dave, another suggestion is to get a Faroudja NRS scaler. These used to go for several thousand, now you shouldn't pay more than $200.

12-31-2013, 05:10 PM
I'll loom into a scaler if it looks like crap. I have ready that all HD TVs have scalers built in and they will often do better than those older scalers. Wouldn't it be funny if it were new TVs that made lasers look a little better?

12-31-2013, 08:39 PM
After hearing Dave and Paff rave about LD for over a decade I finally decided to get on the bus earlier this month. So far I've watched a couple discs on my cheapy player, but have since bought a bunch more discs that I'm looking forward to check out. Gotta say, it's a pretty fun little format and the picture quality is better than I expected.

12-31-2013, 10:07 PM
I'll loom into a scaler if it looks like crap. I have ready that all HD TVs have scalers built in and they will often do better than those older scalers.

Not Faroudja. Those things were around $5K when they were first manufactured, in a time when there were no HD sources (Blu, etc) but people had HD screens anyway. They were designed to get the maximum performance out of SD sources. There's on-board de-interlacing, where they interpolate the signal to fill in the missing info. Oh, you'll still see the jaggies if you get close enough to the screen, but from 10' away it's entirely watchable.

I mean, think about it. If you're in charge of R&D at Samsung, LG, Panasonic, whatever, how much are you going to invest in your HDTVs' upscaling ability of SD signals? All OTA signals have to be digital now, and almost all inputs are hi-def. I got a near top of the line plasma, and there's only two non-HDMI inputs (and the composite and component are actually combined, so it's really only one). My last HD screen had SIX! So I'm not thinking the upscaling ability of today's screens will be all that special.

I'm gonna give it a real workout tonight with my first viewing of a Laser I picked up years ago but never got a chance to watch: It's a Mad Mad Mad Mad World. At the time, it was the only complete, proper aspect ratio of the film (and actually still is until Criterion's Blu Ray edition comes out in a few weeks)

01-01-2014, 11:51 PM
I'll look into it for sure, Paff. I hooked up my 604 to test it out before it begins its journey up north in another week or two. It still works - has the same U1 error it has always had. Once it accepts the disc (takes one or two tries), it plays just fine until it is left alone for a few hours. Anyway, I threw in The Iron Giant and it looks like shiiiaaatttt on my new 60" TV. The encouraging news is that, zooming in didn't produce much of hit to the image quality. Surprising. I took a few pictures that I'll include here. Obviously a cell phone picture is not going to reproduce what I'm seeing in person. It's mostly just for fun. Oh, and I have to point out that I don't normally have cables exposed like you see in the pictures. That is because I was fucking around behind the TV (the whole 1-2" of space I get when I tilt it out) trying to get the composite cables plugged in.

If my new player looks 25% better, I'll probably be happy enough as is. If not, I'll look into the scaler. I have limited space as I wall mounted the TV and wall mounted two shelves underneath it for players and what not. I struggled with hooking up an LD player as it will consume a lot of space. As it is, I'm thinking about getting a 5.1 soundbar so I can eliminate the receiver out of my setup (it's not currently hooked up but will be soon if I don't get the bar). My TV is one of the few that will output a pure 5.1 signal to a soundbar. I could probably fit everything but all the clutter right under the display would drive me insane. In a few years when the babies are older I can get a nice stand for equipment and put it under the TV or something.

01-02-2014, 07:45 AM
Paff, do you have that Faroudja scaler? From what I can tell, there are two flavors. The most recent being a DVI output only. My TV doesn't have DVI so that scaler wouldn't work for me. Doing some research on lddb, it looks like another now lost cost scaler would be the DVDO Edge Green. It's definitely something I will consider if the image isn't where I would like it to be. I get a bonus at the end of Jan and might be able to squeeze one more purchase in if necessary.

01-02-2014, 05:31 PM
Dave, which ones were you looking at? Here's the two I know of:



Would you believe I actually own THREE of them? Here's the story. I bought an NRS from E-bay. It arrives, and it has the wrong output setting (it's a factory thing). E-bay guy won't take it back. So I buy another one. It works, and I'm impressed. However, it occasionally shuts down on its own. I contact Faroudja (actually, the company that bought them), and arrange to have the first one reprogrammed. They do it for $150.
Last year though, my film festival was trying to figure out a way to get our Blu-Ray players to interface with the DVI projectors at the theater, so we got the NRS-DVI. Works great, but only for SD sources. It was also an E-bay deal, no returns, so I buy it from the film festival.

This means I have three Faroudja scalers, two working, one a bit iffy. And here's my offer to you, Dave. I will GIVE you the iffy one, just pay me for shipping. If you like it, you can probably send it off to Faroudja for a tune-up (the flat rate on that is $150).

Oh, and just an FYI, if you get one of these, you'll need three BNC-RCA adapters (the composite outputs of the Faroujda are BNC). Get those at Monoprice for a couple of bucks. Radio Shack charges $5 EACH, Monoprice charges $0.95

01-02-2014, 08:44 PM
Done! Awesome, man. I appreciate it. I would love to try it out. You want to drum up some shipping charges to 02062 UPS Ground?

01-02-2014, 09:44 PM
Dave, just PM me your address, I'll hit up UPS this weekend and then tell you how much it was. I know you're good for it.

01-03-2014, 01:11 AM
I had a Pioneer Elite CLD99 and later an HLD-X9.

The CLD99 was great, much better than my previous player, but the HLD-X9 was a different level again. If a normal player is 5/10 then a CLD99 would be 7/10 and the X9 would be 10/10.

I paid about $2400 for the X9 when it was new and sold it about 6-7 years ago for $2200, so they do hold their value very well, being so rare.

I got rid of about 99% of my LD collection a few months later, but if you still have a big LD collection it's definitely worth tracking down an X9. With a good LD transfer it's very close quality wise to a non-anamorphic DVD, it really has that little video noise.

For a scaler you should be able to get an old Iscan VP50 or VP50 pro very cheap now. I've running a 20 year old NEC CRT projector (with a custom HDMI input board) with an Iscan VP50 at full 1080p to a 92" screen and it looks great. It has all the analogue inputs you'll ever need and outputs RGB or HDMI.

01-03-2014, 10:17 PM
I was thinking about buying this 60" LG one which many reviewers say it's great. Anyone here owns this? Model is 60PN6500:

I'd check Panasonic plasmas but they don't sell 'em here anymore.

Also, I was thinking about putting this one in my bedroom but was worried about how many meters away should I be to have a good view of a movie played in it.

01-04-2014, 12:33 AM
There's a good chart here, showing pic. size and viewing distance:


My mate just got the 50" version (50PN650) of that LG Plasma TV last week and it looks great to me. We compared it to the 60" version in the shop and it looked good too, but it was about double the price (950 here, the 50" was 470) so he just went with the 50 despite me doing my best to talk him into the 60. :)

01-04-2014, 01:39 AM
There's a good chart here, showing pic. size and viewing distance:


My mate just got the 50" version (50PN650) of that LG Plasma TV last week and it looks great to me. We compared it to the 60" version in the shop and it looked good too, but it was about double the price (950 here, the 50" was 470) so he just went with the 50 despite me doing my best to talk him into the 60. :)

Thanks for the chart!

Yeah, both are great, and there're models with and without Smart TV feature in those LGs! I guess I'll go for the one with 60". And will probably keep my 29" CRT for TV movies I have in DVD (4:3). It's just tube TVs occupy too much space. Hope it still fits here when I buy the plasma one.

01-15-2014, 05:31 AM
Paff I know we PM'd a bit on this, but I'll post this information here just to save it.

So Paff sent me a scaler; awfully kind of him. I just paid shipping.

Let me start by stating that I hooked up my 604 player last week to my 60" Vizio TV. TV is only several months old and it's a 2013 model, so it's NEW. I put in Iron Giant (a later release) and it looked like ass. I wasn't too surprised. That's part of the reason I got the Japanese player (shipping tomorrow).

Yesterday the scaler from Paff arrived. The 604 isn't hooked up anywhere. It as sitting in a closet. When I tested it last week, I just put it on the floor. I have a mount TV and mounted shelves, so to hook up the player permanently would require opening up the casing on the shelves and hiding the wires accordingly. I didn't want to do that with a new player on the way. After the test, the player went back to the closet. To test the scaler I decided to use the bedroom TV, a 55" Samsung plasma. This TV is from 2010, so it's ancient by TV standards. I plugged in the scaler, hooked up the player, and fired it up. Looked pretty good. Significantly better than how it looked on my 60" Vizio. I was impressed. FYI, I zoomed in to blow up the image on both tests. On the first test (no scaler), I used the TV zoom. On the second test, I used the scaler zoom. For comparison sake, I hooked up the player without the scaler to see how it looked on the Samsung. Here's the shocker. It looked just as good; perhaps even better. I was floored. Now I know most, if not all, modern HDTVs will scale analog sources. Does this mean the Samsung scaler simply beats the Faroudja scaler? It's possible. I need to test more. Try with S-Video, play with settings, etc.

I had originally planned to hook my new LD player up to my living room TV, but I'm starting to think it might end up in the bedroom. Not only because it looked better, but because I'll be able to watch more movies. I get out of work at 11am and typically go home to nap. My sister-in-law is there helping with the babies. I can't ever watch movies during the day - babies are watching their Yo Gabba Gabba and what not. So throwing a laser on the bedroom tv while I try to take a nap would make the most sense.

The test will continue but I'm going to wait until the new player arrives next week. I have a few pictures I'll post but they are from a cell phone so are hardly anything concrete in terms of what I'm actually seeing. They will give you a vague idea.

01-16-2014, 05:53 AM
So, if I'm reading this correctly, you haven't tried the scaler with the new Vizio, only the older Samsung? And that on the Samsung, the scaler performed about the same as hooking it up directly?

I'm sure you'll try this anyway, but make sure you try the scaler with the Vizio. It's very possible the new Vizio has minimal circuitry (comb filter) designed to improve the look of analog sources. After all, who uses analog sources anymore? (see my previous post on the subject). The 2010 Samsung still had some of that technology.

I have to admit, I haven't tried connecting my 704 directly to my new Plasma; I've only gone through the scaler. Unfortunately, with only one analog input on the plasma, I can't do a true A/B comparison. I have to run one test, change the cables, and run it again. It's a bit harder to see which option offers a better picture in that situation, unless the difference is really huge.

I do say that I was more impressed the way LDs looked on my 60" plasma (through the scaler) than I expected. At the very least, it certainly looked better than on my 42", which really threw me for a loop.

01-16-2014, 07:16 AM
Yup you are correct.

I will try it on the Vizio but I'll wait until my new player arrives. I'll try both players though, just to see.

I was very surprised how good it looked on my 55", but was more surprised that it looked a bit better w/o scaler.

New player should be here next week. I'll keep you posted.

02-02-2014, 12:13 AM
Any updates on your player/setup, Dave?

I haven't watched any all month. When I ran It's A Mad Mad Mad Mad World last month, I was getting a lot of squealing from my player. But for Chinese New Year, I decided to throw in one of my old kung-fu flicks, Dragon Lord from 1982 starring Jackie Chan. It really looked good (and no squealing from the player).

Oddly enough, I'm starting to think it's my discs with mediocre transfers that look best (Hong Kong discs were traditionally rather poor....often taken from theatrical prints, so the scratches, dirt, and cigarette burns are all visible).It's the discs from the late 90s, at the end of the format, that show the limitations. I'll have to check my copies of stuff like L.A. Confidential, Boogie Nights, Saving Private Ryan, The Matrix, etc to confirm my theory. One of the discs I originally checked for quality was the first Austin Powers movie, which was considered a "reference quality" disc back in the day. It really looked terrible (it didn't help that it was also showing in HD on the Encore channel, and comparing LD to HD isn't even in the same ballpark. It's not even the same fucking sport).

Luckily, the reason I'm still holding on to LD is the extensive collection of Hong Kong discs like I mentioned, and a ton of horror. Most of those got good transfers, but not exactly "reference" quality. They should be fine.

02-02-2014, 11:26 AM
Sadly, the player arrived damaged. As soon as I took it out of the box, you could hear a piece rolling around the inside of the player. As it turned out, there was a small transformer type piece and two small plastic gears. While the shipping box looked great, there was little padding on the inside to absorb shock. just a thin piece of bubble wrap around the player and some newspaper on the side of the box.

Have you used rinkya.com before, Paff? They are a third party. You can bid on yahoo.co.jp auctions and they'll get the winning item and send it to you. They charge a fee based on the amount of the auction. They are pretty popular. Google searches find good and bad things said about them, as to be expected.

I told Rinkya I want a claim filed but the reality is that would mean returning the player to Fedex. That's not happening (I haven't told them that yet). I'm going to dispute the charge with my credit card company too, just to get them involved. I'm not looking for a free player. If they refund all of their fees (~$100), I would be happy with that.

It's too bad, too, because the player looks mint.

I contacted two people regarding a repair. Kurtis Bahr (long involved in the LD community; I remember him on the newsgroups back in the 90s) and Duncan of laserdiscservice.com. I opened the player and sent them pictures of the part that broke off. Both believe they can repair without having to replace the part, but couldn't guarantee it. Kurtis quoted me a better price and he lives closer, so shipping is cheaper and turnaround time is quicker. He received it on Friday and told me he would have an initial look this weekend. Best case I'm out $100. Worse case I'm out $200 + return shipping. Considering how cheaper I got the player, I'm still ahead of what they typically sell for here in the States, but only by $100 or $200. The only plus is Kurtis will fully tune it up and replace any worn gears or belts. I had considered having that done anyway; I just wanted to wait until I had a little more free money.

Kurtis told me the plastic piece this component is attached to, the one that broke off during shipping, is very brittle and it is a common problem. He said Pioneer actually changed the plastic in the replacement part because of it. He has the replacement part in stock, too. That is where the $200+shipping price comes from; if he has to replace the entire part. So perhaps I'm blaming Rinkya more than I should. But considering this was traveling from Japan to the States, there's no arguing it was packaged poorly.

Another plus is this particular player does not need a voltage converter. So the one I bought is getting returned to Amazon for another $38.00 back in my pocket.

Best case I should get it back this week, though I suspect it will be the following week.

I've picked up probably 12 lasers over the past few weeks, too. I'm dying to give them a spin. I'm done buying, though. I'm officially broke.

02-02-2014, 11:54 AM
As for newer lasers, I have been listening to the commentary on the Elite Dawn box (a 1998 release) and think it looks great on my Samsung TV. And I've been looking at all the blu releases, too (got the Arrow and Happinet blus).

As for newer lasers and newer (late 90s) movies, well, I tried Iron Giant simply because it looked like shit on my new Vizio TV. It looks very good on my Samsung plasma.

These are with my old player, too. Who knows what they'll look like with the new player.

02-03-2014, 12:48 AM
That's one thing I don't miss about LD players, they were always quite fragile and prone to shipping damage.

The first HLD-X9 I bought was destroyed in transit. Took it to local repair shop and they said the transport mechanism was damaged beyond repair. In the end I had to involve my credit card company to get the shop I bought it from to replace it.

The replacement one arrived OK.

When I finally sold it years later I used loads of extra padding and double boxed it in a *huge* box filled with extra packing and it still arrived damaged. Luckily the damage was minor and the buyer was able to have it repaired locally.

So that was 2 out of 3 times shipping an X9 and it was damaged in transit. It was a really big and very heavy player though.

Hope you can get your new player running OK.

02-08-2014, 07:23 PM
I got the repaired player back. It's working great now. More importantly, it looks as if Rinkya is going to foot the repair bill. I paid it but should get reimbursed.

I tested it this weekend with the scaler and straight composite connection to the TV. While the image is slightly better than my 604, it's not significant. As for the scaler, I tested with svideo too but I'm still not impressed. Paff, I'm seeing artifacts on the screen. I played with detail settings and what not but I can't find any balance that I like. I find myself going back to straight composite to the TV.

I'm not convinced a scaler cant improve the image but perhaps because this NRS has issues I'm just not seeing it. I do like some of the features, such as the ability to put a black bar over Japanese subtitles. Awesome!

I may get an IScan HD+ in the near future. While I'm locking up the wallet, I do have some stuff I'm selling on ebay and wouldn't be opposed to using those funds buy it. As for now, I'll be enjoying the CLD-R7G with a straight composite connection to the TV.

02-09-2014, 02:30 AM
Black bar over the subtitles?? I didn't even know about that function, Dave! Unless you're talking about the "Letterbox" setting, which is pretty much the same as zooming in on your TV.

I'll have to try connecting my 704 directly to the TV with a composite cable and see if I prefer the look without using the scaler.

Last night I watched my HK LD of Executioners, the 1993 sequel to The Heroic Trio, starring Anita Mui, Michelle Yeoh, and Maggie Cheung. I have the Tai Seng American release of the movie too, but I hate their LDs as they put the subs in the letterboxed area so you can't zoom in. The HK discs have the subs in the picture. I have to say, it was quite watchable, and only a couple of scenes really made me aware that it was a laserdisc. Well, that and the side flip of course!

02-09-2014, 12:01 PM
No it has a feature that allows you to raise a black bar and it will cover the subtitles. I read about some other scalers having that feature, too. Pretty cool feature.

I'll post back again when/if I get a HD+. I found a used one I would buy if he still has it.

02-10-2014, 11:56 PM
Ah, the bottom blanking. I just ignored that, as I'm more concerned with the picture and not the letterboxed area. I think I have only one disc where that would be handy, the Japanese release of Phantom Menace.

02-11-2014, 12:19 AM
Oh, and I can't imagine that the HD+ would be significantly better (or better at all for that matter) than the Faroudja.

02-23-2014, 01:24 PM
The HD+ definitely edges out the Faroudja. It's not night and day better but it's superior to the TV, which the Faroudja is not. And I'm not seeing the MPEG artifacts. In fairness, I haven't toyed with the settings too much on either one (besides setting the HD+ to 1080). But with default settings, the HD+ wins out. Not to mention the remote, onscreen settings, etc.

Anyway, it's been fun revisiting it and I'm now ready to actually start watching lasers again. I'm more excited that they are completely watchable now on my 55" TV, even when zoomed in on.

02-23-2014, 07:24 PM
Dammit Dave, you're making me consider the HD+ now.

Can you take some screenshots of all three setups? I might also have to try connecting my 704 directly to the TV and comparing that vs. the Faroudja. If it looks the same to me (like you're experiencing), I might have to look into an HD+

Hey, do you have the Video Essentials LD? They've got that Snell & Willcox pattern, the one with the bouncing ball. I always get a color smear on that ball (It's black and white), and if that could ever be shown right, that would be the definitive "best way" of connecting LD to HDTV

02-23-2014, 08:24 PM
HD+ I found used for $130. No brainer.

At some point I'll be hooking the player up to the computer to capture Dawn. I'll do comparison shots then.

I don't have the disc but I've seen the smearing in many discs. Doesn't happen on the CLD-R7G

02-23-2014, 08:54 PM
You should find a copy of the Video Essentials LD just to have. I've always sworn by the calibration procedures done with that disc.

Here's the Snell & Wilcox pattern:

That big ball in the middle moves around, and on the best configuration it will look black and white like in the picture. But if you get color smears in it, then it's not ideal. I've never gotten it without the color smears on LD (DVD and Blu have always been fine)

02-23-2014, 08:58 PM
Holy shitsnacks. There was one (HD+) on E-bay for $150 obo, I offered $125 and they took it.

02-24-2014, 08:57 PM
I hope you like it Paff and see the difference I saw. I was wondering if perhaps that Faroudja just had some faulty hardware leading to poorer image and the shutoff issues...

Here are a few cell phone shots. Some observations:

1) Not as good, or accurate, as feeding through a computer. I will do those someday some Dawn reviews I'm working on.

2) American Pie is a 2000 release so we are obviously talking about a top notch presentation on the disc itself.

3) CLD-R7G player; one of the higher end Japanese players. You got the Muse players (HLD-X9, etc., LD-S9, and then probably this one I got).

Even with those factors, when you figure I'm zooming in on the image and taking the shots from a cell phone, they look pretty damn good (no pun intended). I am playing with all sorts of color, brightness, and contrast settings. Though I went back to default for these shots and just fine tuned minimally to try and get it close to default settings on TV and scaler.

I get giddy looking at these shots and want to run into the bedroom to watch a disc. Actually, I'm going to do that. Giving my new Caddyshack purchase a spin to celebrate the life of Harold Ramis.

02-24-2014, 10:08 PM
Those do look pretty good Dave, but I do think you need to do some calibrating of your screen (cell phone camera or not). Seriously, get a copy of Video Essentials.

I'll be getting my HD+ this week, so I'll try doing a similar comparison. I'll find a CAV disc so I can get that perfect pause, and literally have the exact same frame up.

02-24-2014, 10:22 PM
Looking forward to your thoughts.

I agree on the calibration and I will look into that disc. The defaults on this TV are dreadful so calibration discs are a good idea.

02-24-2014, 11:16 PM
A few Video Essentials on eBay. One solo for 17 and one in a lot of 4 discs - video, MTV disc, karaoke 8", and Heavy Metal. Offered 17 and they accepted. Maybe this Heavy Metal won't be rotted? Worth a shot. As for Video, there is one version with an AC3 issue but I'm not doing AC3 on this setup.

02-24-2014, 11:45 PM
Did you see if it has the filter for the color calibration? It's a little strip of dark blue film that you look through when you have color bars up. You adjust the color and tint, until the top bars match the bottom ones.

02-25-2014, 12:32 AM
Probably should have checked that. From what I just googled, if your TV allows you yo turn off R G B individually (mine does), you don't need it. But being a completionist with stuff like that, I will probably get the DVD for a few bucks (same strip) if mine doesn't have it.

02-25-2014, 12:38 AM
Yeah, it's the same thing. I bought VE copies on LD and DVD I lent out my DVD copy, and the idiot lost the strip. So I just use the one remaining strip for both formats.

02-25-2014, 12:52 AM
It seems like the type of thing people (not me) would lose a lot.

Rhett and In were chatting about how so many used LD players don't have remotes. I think many end up in closets and those remotes just end up in sock world.

02-25-2014, 07:44 PM
Remotes easily get forgotten. Hell, last month I sold my old plasma 42" to a good friend. We took all the time to pack it in his car securely, etc etc, then 4 hours later he calls and says "you never gave me the remote". Sure enough, I didn't.

Then there's the rather ugly truth that a lot of the electronic goods we're buying on E-bay may very well be stolen. Most thieves don't take the time to find the remote when they're stealing A/V gear.

02-27-2014, 04:48 AM
Ack! I should have paid closer attention to the connections of the HD+. The output to the television is that weird VGA (but not VGA) to component cable. I don't have one. Sure, it was only 3 bucks at Monoprice, but I bumped up the shipping to overnight so I have it before the weekend (had I known I'd need it, I'd have ordered one on Sunday but could have chosen normal shipping). Oh well, I'm only out an extra 3 bucks on the overnight. But I can't check it out till Friday now.

03-04-2014, 11:05 PM
What's the verdict Paffendorf???

03-04-2014, 11:54 PM
Going to do some comparison testing tonight. I've got the HD+ connected, and it did not wow me. I do like the user interface and remote (WAY better than the Faroudja), but I don't know if I like the picture. I watched Fall of the House of Usher over the weekend, and there was one scene where Vincent Price was playing the lute. He held the lute at an angle, and the strings were like stairsteps. That might be a good scene to do a A/B comparison to, unfortunately I only have one component in on my Plasma, so I'll have to unplug cables to do it. I'm thinking of using my phone (a Nokia Lumia with HD) to do the screenshots.

03-07-2014, 10:31 PM
I definitely find it superior but clearly there are issues with the one you sent to me. HD+ wins on default settings in my Samsung plasma. I have been enjoying discs everyday. I got the Video Essentials yesterday too, and the DVD today with filter.

03-13-2014, 06:31 AM
Dave, here's a side-by-side comparison of the Iscan and the Faroudja. I think there's a very, very slight improvement with the Faroudja. Look at the lettering of "Snell & Wilcox". It's slightly finer with the Faroudja. I think the Iscan has a little more blooming (a term you're probably very familiar with if you went through the Video Essentials disc). I might be able to dial it down a bit.

Either way, I don't think there's a clear-cut better solution. I'll probably keep the Iscan and the Faroudja, and sell my other Faroudja.

04-24-2014, 07:06 AM
The jury is still out how the Iscan handles LD, but I used it this weekend to scale an HD signal for a film festival. It was amazing.

We have a hard drive that we got from overseas that contains a thousand or so old Chinese movies. The output is HDMI. In the past, I used an old Gefen scaler but the picture was total ass. We had to though, as the projector doesn't have HDMI inputs, and it's not HDCP compliant (meaning when I try to send it an HD signal, the hard drive will shut down the output due to the non-HDCP compliance).

I've since acquired some HDCP-removing hardware, but there ended up being a sizing problem. It was only putting out an image that was a quarter of the size of the screen. No one in their right mind would pay to watch a movie in a theater like that. So I went home and got my Iscan, and with a little tweaking I got a gorgeous image that filled up the screen. In scope, no less!

I don't know if I'll make it a part of my HT, but it will definitely be used in future film festivals!