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Old DVDs on new 4k TV

Old 01-12-19, 10:20 PM
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Old DVDs on new 4k TV

hi all. I posted this in the wrong section (HD Talk). Heck, I didn't even know about this one.

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Hi all, Long time member who finally upgraded to ye' ol BluRay a year or so ago. I had been playing them on a rear projection TV I'd had for a decade but I received a 4k TV for Christmas and since then have been basking in the glory of what I'd been missing. (Note: I don't actually have a 4k Player yet so still not getting all I'm missing but I do see some awesome 4k stuff on Youtube and Netflix) Then came today.I got a hankering to watch my DVD of Fight Club, popped it in, and...well, it looks like ass! Muddy image, crude around the edges of the characters, text somewhat pixalated. What the heck is going on? If it helps, I have a Sharp Roku 4K TV Model: LC-43LBU591C (https://www.bestbuy.ca/en-ca/product...B&gclsrc=aw.ds) / And LG 3D BluRay Home Theatre System Model: LG BH6420P. Considering the bulk of my 1000 flick + collection is still DVDs, is there any way to fix this? (As an aside, the surround on Fight Club sounded great on the player...just not so hot image to match)

A poster in HD Talk mentioned that this is pretty much akin to changing from VHS to BluRay. As I don't want to phase out my large collection of DVDs (most not available on Blu anyway), want to try to keep the sound from the surround system and maintain as much of the better picture from my old discs as possible, it was suggested I post here to see what a solution might be or ask about upscaling hardware that works better than perhaps mine does (though note, my player is also where the speakers connect for the surround so I'd want to maintain that surround sound).

What options do I have?
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Old 01-14-19, 06:48 PM
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Re: Old DVDs on new 4k TV

I'm interested in an answer to this as well. I mean, is it worth getting a 4K projector if most of what one is watching is SD or HD? One would hope the projectors or TVs have (upscaling?) settings that prevent SD material from looking like shit.
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Old 01-15-19, 09:21 AM
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Re: Old DVDs on new 4k TV

If you're playing SD on a bigger screen, it's not going to look great regardless. The example in the OP of Fight Club... the DVD looked like shit regardless of screen size. If the DVD doesn't have a good print, a remaster, etc. it's going to look even worse. Most DVDs are going to be worth upgrading. When I converted, I said I wouldn't do upgrades on everything. The more I go to watch a DVD on my 75" 4K TV, the more I upgrade. Sometimes it is fine, it is a small comedy, and I can deal with it. But most of the time I'll find the blu for $5 or less and upgrade it. If it includes a digital copy, I'll sell that and make back most of the money. My collection is too large, so I won't get to everything.

If you're going to invest in some high tech 4K projector and set up, know going in that if you're wanting to get the most of the system, you have to upgrade the content as well.

I use blu-ray.com for reviews (and to know what 4K discs are worth purchasing over a blu) and caps-a-holic.com for comparison of DVD to blu/4k.
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Old 01-15-19, 03:56 PM
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Re: Old DVDs on new 4k TV

Originally Posted by dex14 View Post
If you're going to invest in some high tech 4K projector and set up, know going in that if you're wanting to get the most of the system, you have to upgrade the content as well.
I was afraid of that. I have a 10-year-old+ Optoma EZPro 739 with a 120" screen. I am just fundamentally unwilling to replace all my DVDs or BDs. It never ends. Next it'll be 8k, then 16K, and so forth. It's idiotic.
The projector I have is OK, but I'd like to get one that satisfies me to a sufficient degree. One that approximates the viewing of a DVD or BD on a big old CRT TV. Deep contrast, full blacks, etc., etc. Frankly, I will never buy 4K media unless films are released that I can't get in any other format.
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Old 01-15-19, 05:23 PM
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Re: Old DVDs on new 4k TV

Given equal screen size, does BD(1080p), broadcast HD, cable HD, satellite HD all look worse on a 4K tv because the tv wants to display quality that just isn't there?
EDIT: Talked to some tech guys and DVD should look just as good, if not better on a 4K tv than regular HD tv. OP, is your new tv a larger screen size? No matter how bad the Fight Club DVD may be, it should look as good as it did on your old tv. Unless you've increased screen size.

Last edited by rw2516; 01-15-19 at 05:41 PM.
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Old 01-15-19, 06:43 PM
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Re: Old DVDs on new 4k TV

Upscaling wonít magically convert your DVDs to HD. It will smooth some stuff out, but theyíre going to look ďsoftĒ no matter what. Upscaling wonít add detail that isnít there.

Another issue, if your DVDs have compression artifacts (digital blocking, mosquito noise) or edge enhancement, the larger screen and sharper display will tend to amplify these things.

Itís just the nature of the beast. A 640x480 image blown up to 3840x2160 just isnít going to look as good as an image in that native resolution. Thereís just so much you can do. Itís like printing a low resolution JPG that looked fine on your old CRT monitor to an 8x10, and having it look blurry and blocky.

Last edited by Josh-da-man; 01-15-19 at 06:49 PM.
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Old 01-15-19, 10:18 PM
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Re: Old DVDs on new 4k TV

Originally Posted by Josh-da-man View Post
Itís like printing a low resolution JPG that looked fine on your old CRT monitor to an 8x10, and having it look blurry and blocky.
True, that's a cogent analogy.

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Old 01-16-19, 09:02 PM
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Re: Old DVDs on new 4k TV

But, it still helps to have a DVD which had a good transfer -- and also a great encode quality -- in the first place. Further, really does help to have a good upconverting player. To this day, I keep my old Toshiba XA-2 HD-DVD player around since it has the Reon chip which does a fantastic job at upconverting (to 1080p). Now, your 4k TV is going to upconvert *that* 1080p image to 4k, so it helps if the TV itself also has good upconverting ability.

So, that's 4 variables that help make a DVD look its best at 4k:

1. Source transfer of DVD most important
2. Quality of DVD encode
3. Upconverting ability of Blu-ray player (ie, quality of upconverting chip in that player)
4. Upconversion quality of 4k set.

As it goes, if you put kaka in you get Caca out. Try to maximize all 4 variables and you get a pretty good DVD result even on large monitors / projectors.
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Old 01-16-19, 10:23 PM
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Re: Old DVDs on new 4k TV

^Good advice to remember if I decide to get a 4K projector after all. I'll have to do a lot of research at avsforum.
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Old 01-18-19, 07:11 PM
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Re: Old DVDs on new 4k TV

Originally Posted by rw2516 View Post
Given equal screen size, does BD(1080p), broadcast HD, cable HD, satellite HD all look worse on a 4K tv because the tv wants to display quality that just isn't there?
EDIT: Talked to some tech guys and DVD should look just as good, if not better on a 4K tv than regular HD tv. OP, is your new tv a larger screen size? No matter how bad the Fight Club DVD may be, it should look as good as it did on your old tv. Unless you've increased screen size.
It's about the same size as my rear projection set I was using before. Maybe an inch bigger the new set is. To be honest, I don't think I've yanked Fight Club out in many years so could be I never watched it on the other set and the biggest I had prior was 30" or so square TV

I mean, Fight Club was the first DVD I ever bought back in 2000 perhaps so I imagine, say, the DVD that came with Ant Man and The Wasp would look fine on the 4k.

I guess what I am driving at is, really, I am not looking to spend a whack of cash to upgrade a whack o'flicks I already upgraded from VHS starting in 1999. :P

That said, I've already upgraded a bunch so maybe that inevitable. Perhaps the key now is to buy 4k with regular blu in it for certain flicks despite not currently having a 4k player just so I am on par with things.

Then again, I am interested in what my DVDs of Baraka and Samsara will look like given the packaging says they are 8k transfers.

To be honest, it's all just Greek to me. I just want to watch good movies.
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Old 01-18-19, 07:15 PM
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Re: Old DVDs on new 4k TV

As a reverse kinda' aside, I did upgrade Jurassic Park this week (mainly because the set had the two recent films and I only had the trilogy) and at first was thrown back because of how much grain was visible in the film on the set. I thought something was wrong until I did a search and learned that, yeah, it's supposed to be there. It's just these new sets are so sharp it amplifies what we didn't see before in many ways, including the grain. I liken it to having to get used to, say, the black bars at first on Widescreen flicks for many people. I guess so long as it is not too distracting (as it wasn't really in Jurassic Park), it's ok. But then I popped in Robin Hood Prince of Thieves and it looked terrible.

Well, still, I prefer it to the scrubbing some discs get that make everything look plastic.
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Old 01-19-19, 08:10 AM
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Re: Old DVDs on new 4k TV

Originally Posted by ViewAskewbian View Post
As a reverse kinda' aside, I did upgrade Jurassic Park this week (mainly because the set had the two recent films and I only had the trilogy) and at first was thrown back because of how much grain was visible in the film on the set. I thought something was wrong until I did a search and learned that, yeah, it's supposed to be there. It's just these new sets are so sharp it amplifies what we didn't see before in many ways, including the grain. I liken it to having to get used to, say, the black bars at first on Widescreen flicks for many people. I guess so long as it is not too distracting (as it wasn't really in Jurassic Park), it's ok. But then I popped in Robin Hood Prince of Thieves and it looked terrible.

Well, still, I prefer it to the scrubbing some discs get that make everything look plastic.
Look at it this way. You haven't lost anything. The DVDs looked just as bad before, you just weren't realizing it. Now you are realizing what was always there. Any DVD you watch on the new set looks as it did on the old one. Your DVD hasn't suddenly turned to crap. You just have to adjust.
You could watch a DVD and think it looks good. You could watch the same DVD immediately after watching a BD and think the DVD looks awful. In reality the DVD looks identical in both situations.
Don't obsess over it. Don't be like the person who constantly has to adjust settings because they just can't get it in their head it's right. Don't constantly put in DVDs to see how bad they look or they'll always look bad.

When I upgraded my tv I was still DVD only. I had never seen blu-ray or had HD tv. The DVDs looked so good I wanted to rewatch everything because these old DVDs looked better than they ever had before. Six months later I got BD player. I loved the increase in quality with BD but the DVDs still looked better than they had ever looked before. I'd been watching DVDs for six months on a 1080p display so I didn't notice a drop in DVD quality when I switched to BD, only a increase in quality with BD.
It's mostly in our heads, perception vs reality.
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Old 01-19-19, 01:11 PM
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Re: Old DVDs on new 4k TV

Originally Posted by rw2516 View Post
Look at it this way. You haven't lost anything. The DVDs looked just as bad before, you just weren't realizing it. Now you are realizing what was always there. Any DVD you watch on the new set looks as it did on the old one. Your DVD hasn't suddenly turned to crap. You just have to adjust.
You could watch a DVD and think it looks good. You could watch the same DVD immediately after watching a BD and think the DVD looks awful. In reality the DVD looks identical in both situations.
Don't obsess over it. Don't be like the person who constantly has to adjust settings because they just can't get it in their head it's right. Don't constantly put in DVDs to see how bad they look or they'll always look bad.

When I upgraded my tv I was still DVD only. I had never seen blu-ray or had HD tv. The DVDs looked so good I wanted to rewatch everything because these old DVDs looked better than they ever had before. Six months later I got BD player. I loved the increase in quality with BD but the DVDs still looked better than they had ever looked before. I'd been watching DVDs for six months on a 1080p display so I didn't notice a drop in DVD quality when I switched to BD, only a increase in quality with BD.
It's mostly in our heads, perception vs reality.
Thank you. That makes total sense.
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