4K, Online Content, AVR Upgrade
When I got my first real job, I decided to buy a big TV, so I got a 65-inch Mitsubishi rear- projection TV that accepts 1080i signals. As the years have passed, 1080p showed up as well as HDMI and other features. I started looking around and decided I wanted a Pioneer Kuro, but then Pioneer stopped making them. From everything I've read, Panasonic plasmas can't match the Kuro in picture quality, and I couldn't care less about 3D.
So, here are my questions. Should I wait for 4K to become mainstream? Do you know when such TV sets might become available? Do you have any idea what the 2011 line of Panasonics will be?
I wouldn't wait for 4K. In my opinion, we won't see mainstream 4K displays for several years at least. Then there's the issue of 4K content, which will require a new disc format or a major increase in widely available online bandwidth. I'm not holding my breath for 4K in the home any time soon.
I agree that the Panasonic plasmas do not match the Kuro for picture quality, but the best from Panasonic is pretty darn good. And since Panasonic acquired Pioneer's plasma technology, I expect its plasmas to continue to improve as that technology is incorporated more and more into each generation of products. I have no idea what the 2011 line will look like, but we'll find out next month at CES. Of course, most of what we see in Las Vegas won't be commercially available until months later.
You Can't Always Get What You Want
I have a question about my new Sony BDP-S370 Wi-Fi Blu-ray player. I have found nothing in the menu that will let me watch podcasts on twit.tv, including yours; I can see them only on YouTube. Is there a way to download an app or something to watch the podcasts on TWiT?
Sadly, no. This is the problem with most Internet-enabled Blu-ray players and TVsthey offer access only to certain content providers with whom their manufacturers have established partnerships. In the case of the BDP-S370, those providers are Netflix, YouTube, and Pandora Internet radio. Other providers can sometimes be added by the manufacturer via firmware updates, but not by the user. I want an appliance-type device that allows access to any online content, but so far, the only thing that will do that is a full-blown computer.
I have an old 42-inch Fujitsu Plasmavision P42VHA20U that does not accept HDMI, but it does accept DVI. I am not ready to upgrade my TV, but I would like to upgrade my A/V receiver to one that accepts and outputs HDMI signals. My current receiver outputs component video.
Does it make sense to get an HDMI-equipped A/V receiver and buy an HDMI-to-DVI adaptor to connect the receiver to the TV? What kind of picture quality can I expect? 1080p? 720p? If the receiver can output 1080p via HDMI, will the TV receive 1080p and be able to display in 1080p, or will the picture quality suffer due to the conversion? If the picture quality will degrade, how will it compare to component-video quality? Should I connect the new receiver to the TV via component connections?
Ramon J. Terrazas
Let's start with the TV, which has a pixel resolution of 852x480in other words, it's standard definition. You're not going to see 1080p or 720p no matter what you do. The DVI input is intended to be used with a computer, not an A/V source, though there's no harm in using it that way. Neither is there any harm in using an HDMI-to-DVI adaptorthis won't degrade the signal at all.
However, I'd be very surprised if the TV can accept 1080p or even 720p signals via any connection. If it can, it must downscale the image to fit its native resolution; otherwise, any high-def source, such as a Blu-ray player or cable/satellite receiver, must downscale the image before it's sent to the TV. Either way, I don't think you'll see much difference between HDMI and component.
If your current receiver can handle high-def content via component, I recommend upgrading the TV first. That way, at least you'll be watching true high def, and you'll be ready for an HDMI-equipped receiver when you can afford it. If you upgrade the receiver first, you won't see any benefit until you upgrade the TV.
If you have a home-theater question, please send it to email@example.com.