3D Projectors, HDMI Problems, Skipping Commercials

Projecting 3D
I know that this was the year of 3D displays at CES, but all of those were LCDs and plasmas. Has there been any word from projector manufacturers producing 3D-ready home-theater projectors? I'm sure the effect will be much more spectacular than any flat panel.

Trent Tunstell

There were some 3D front-projection demos at the show, but the ones I saw were not as impressive as many of the flat panels. For me, the biggest drawback of the front-projection systems being demonstrated at CES was that they used passive polarized glasses, which make the picture look significantly worse than the active shutter glasses used by virtually all direct-view displays, including LCDs, plasmas, and Mitsubishi's RPTVs. Plus, any such projection system needs a special silver screen that isn't ideal for 2D projected images.

At CES, Optoma showed a consumer-oriented, 3D-capable projector, and JVC demonstrated 3D from twin 4K projectors, but that system is prohibitively expensive for all but the most well-heeled consumers. Digital Projection has also demonstrated high-end 3D front projectors using both passive and active glasses, but not at CES. We should see more 3D projection systems at CEDIA in September.

HDMI Woes
I have a problem with my home theater system. My PS3 is connected via HDMI to a Pioneer Elite VSX-94TXH receiver, and the receiver connects via HDMI to a Pioneer Elite PRO-111FD TV. The PS3 won't do 1080p. I also have a TViX M6500 media player, which is capable of doing 1080p, but this causes small traces of "snow" on the screen, so I have to dumb it down to 1080i. My Pioneer Blu-ray player plays 1080p without any issues. Do you have any thoughts or suggestions on how I can fix this?

Robert Fazekas

I don't know why you say the PS3 won't do 1080p—it can output 1080p just fine. When you mention "snow" on the screen, my first thought is that one of the HDMI cables in the TViX signal chain is too long. Using HDMI cables that are too long can result in what I've heard called "sparklies," which I suppose could also be described as "snow." And you imply that setting the TViX box to 1080i solves the problem, which could support this notion, since 1080i sends only half as much information as 1080p/60 in a given time period, which does not push the bandwidth limits of a long cable as much as 1080p.

You say this problem does not occur when using the Pioneer Blu-ray player, so I wonder about the lengths of the cables from the player and TViX box to the AVR. Is the cable from the TViX box significantly longer than the one from the player? If so, that could well be the problem. In general, use the shortest possible HDMI cables in the system and see if that helps.

Skipping Commercials = Theft
My old Panasonic VCR has a Commercial Advance function. After a recording is complete, the VCR marks the tape with the commercial segments, and when you play the recording, it automatically fast-forwards through the commercials.

By contrast, I can skip one minute forward and 30 seconds backward on my Dish DVR, but I haven't heard of any DVR that can skip commercials automatically. Why can't the same principal be applied to DVRs? I guess this should not be difficult, since a DVR is basically a computer.

Larry Haskin

Actually, it's very easy for DVRs to skip commercials entirely; in fact, the old Replay DVRs used to do it until the broadcasters legally forced them remove this feature so people couldn't skip commercials so easily. After all, commercials are what pay for a fair chunk of TV programming, and according to Jamie Kellner, former CEO of Turner Broadcasting, "Any time you skip a commercial...you're actually stealing the programming." Now, DVRs are limited to skipping 30 seconds or a minute at a time.

If you have a home-theater question, please send it to scott.wilkinson@sorc.com.

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COMMENTS
KC VIEWER's picture

Regarding the commercial skip...The only thing that is stealing is the excessive cable/sat rates we are charged to watch television and then be bombarded incessantly with inane ads for products we already know are there...and are not buying at the time we are being advertised to...commercials should be bundled at the top and bottom of every hour to insure we are entertained by what we are tuned in for..and have the option of viewing the commercial if we so choose...I believe commercials/advertisers should concentrate on advertising in the actual buying environment..(Grocery store..Mall..Dept Store etc..) That way you can make your purchased based on the ad at the point of sale and not trying to remember some stupid jingle or less than clever mock societal gag ad...JMHO...

Peter Headland's picture

"Any time you skip a commercial...you're actually stealing the programming."Outrageous though that quote is, it gets worse. The broadcasters would like to make it impossible to fast forward during commercials - yes, they actually want to lock you out of your DVR while the commercials play: http://www.mediapost.com/publications/?fa=Articles.showArticle&art_aid=4... I hate most about th ever-increasing percentage of air time that is taken up by commercials is the way show are mutilated to reduce their length. We still remember the detective show that had a crucial scene chopped out so we were left wondering "WTF?" at the end.We now buy shows we really care about on DVD instead. How long before DVDs have uninterruptible commercials?

Bill's picture

ahhh, panasonic vcr with commercial advance. I remembered that good ol' piece of tech. I kept it for 2 weeks. that was when panasonic's VCR quality declined, as they became cheaper. but playback quality is not as good. I had to return that VCR because the playback is nowhere near my other 2 Panasonic VCRs.with regards to actual commercial advance, I assume more can be done on the computer side. but not on the DVR side anymore. On my MacMini home theater PC set up, there was additional software that one can install with the tuner software, so that when recordings are made, the commercial times gets flagged, and it skips for you automatically, and I love that feature. It is not 100% fool proof however, as sometimes it can be off. But since DVR are either tie in with cable or satellite companies, which have contracts with broadcast companies, I think that feature will not come by again. The best bet was Tivo. But since Replay TV lost that war to broadcasters, I think it's gone too. very sad i

james's picture

"How long before DVDs have uninterruptible commercials?"they're already here. I've run into numerous BD's where I can't FF or escape the brow-beating previews by attempting to hit the "menu" button.It's like the theater...show up 15 minutes "late" to enjoy the show!

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Home Theater Projectors wholesale's picture

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Home Theater Projectors wholesale's picture

Modern times need modern monitors. With a room, I bet you don’t want a small TV. Maybe you consider a 50 inch LCD TV is big, I don’t think so. You have a spacious room, big enough to make entire wall as a screen! So let’s choose home theater projectors. Think about it’s in the cinema, that’s the feeling of having a home theater projectors. With your powerful speaker, you can make your own room as a cinema. that’s cool~ why not try yourself?

Home Theater Projectors wholesale's picture

Modern times need modern monitors. With a room, I bet you don’t want a small TV. Maybe you consider a 50 inch LCD TV is big, I don’t think so. You have a spacious room, big enough to make entire wall as a screen! So let’s choose home theater projectors. Think about it’s in the cinema, that’s the feeling of having a home theater projectors. With your powerful speaker, you can make your own room as a cinema. that’s cool~ why not try yourself?

Home Theater Projectors wholesale's picture

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Home Theater Projectors wholesale's picture

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Home Theater Projectors wholesale's picture

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Home Theater Projectors wholesale's picture

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Lance Szela's picture

Thanks for the effort you took to expand upon this post so thoroughly.The top-notch of the home theaters experience has became possible by using the front projection tv

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