Will Video Adjustments in My Surround Processor and TV Conflict?

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Q Both my TV and Marantz AV8801 surround processor provide video adjustments. If I tweak the settings for both, will they conflict with each other? Also, if the Marantz does a good job handling video processing, will there be any advantage to using a high-end player like the Oppo BDP-93 instead of a PS3 for Blu-ray playback?—Michael McGehee / Macon, GA

A Adjusting picture settings on both your TV and surround processor can definitely have a cumulative effect: You could end up with a too-high black level, overly saturated color, etc. When using an AV processer for video switching, what I’d recommend is to adjust the TV’s picture settings for your primary source (presumably Blu-ray) and then make minor picture tweaks (brightness, noise reduction, etc.) for additional sources such as a DVR or media streamer using the settings provided on the processor. (An alternative would be to make adjustments to the TV’s preset picture modes for each source and manually switch them, but that routine can be a hassle.)

As for the Oppo versus PS3 question, here’s the deal: Pre/pros simply pass through a 1080p signal coming from a Blu-ray player via HDMI without performing any additional processing, so your Marantz’s video capabilities won’t matter for Blu-ray playback. They could make a difference with DVDs, though. When Sound & Vision reviewed the Marantz AV8801, we found its video processing and passthrough to be excellent (post-firmware upgrade, that is), so you could very well lean on it to improve picture quality for DVD playback with a PS3.