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Perfect PAL to NTSC conversion is here. And it's region free!!

International DVD Talk Intl. DVDs, Region Free Players, RCE, Hong Kong DVDs & More

Perfect PAL to NTSC conversion is here. And it's region free!!

Old 07-27-01, 08:40 PM
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Perfect PAL to NTSC conversion is here. And it's region free!!

The MALATA DVD player. Same chip as the Panasonic 91 Progressive Scan, the best DVD player under 1 grand.

REGION SWITCHABLE with two presses of the remote!! OUR PRAYERS ARE ANSWERED!!

This actually works. "avsforum.com" (DVD LD Hardware section) has multiple posts from people who have confirmed this. I placed my order today. The player converts anamorphic PAL DVDs to NTSC properly about half the time. The other half, you use an XY scale adjustment to stretch the image horizontal or vertical, whichever is needed. Reports are it works perfectly, without any pixel distortion or loss in quality. And these are HDTV nuts singing the praises of this player! (My HDTV arrives in two weeks)

Weaknesses: Cheap remote and a manual that is written in the same kind of English as Hong Kong subtitles. However, web sites are being created as I write this and soon everything about it will be documented.

This is not a SAMPO/APEX clone. Otherwise, I'd say screw it.

http://www.avdeals.com/malata_dvd.htm
Old 07-27-01, 08:57 PM
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Time to take a closer look at region 2 dvd's.....
Old 07-27-01, 09:34 PM
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Looks interesting... but it is hard to decide which of these players/companies to actually trust...
Old 07-27-01, 09:36 PM
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query...

What about the infamous Macrovision?
Old 07-27-01, 11:40 PM
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Hmmm, I have a good PAL capable display, but that still is VERY interesting.
Old 07-28-01, 02:20 AM
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Good thing my Panasonic DVD player arrived today. GRRR
Old 07-28-01, 06:48 AM
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Matt,

Which of the two players did you buy?

Th R0 Default that is firmware upgradeable
or
The R1 Default that is not?

Thanks
-Brett
Old 07-28-01, 10:43 AM
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Originally posted by Matt Stevens
OUR PRAYERS ARE ANSWERED!!
Well, from what I've been reading about this player, mine aren't (yet). Perhaps I'm nitpicking, but wouldn't "Perfect PAL to NTSC conversion" require absolutely no tinkering with the image?

It could very well be that I'm not as technically proficient as many of the people on this forum, but how many people really trust themselves to get the geometry 100% perfect every time the picture needs to be manipulated? Breaking out a ruler half of the time seems kinda cumbersome, for me. I guess I'm picky on this issue.

Matt, thanks for the information. While I don't think "perfect" is here yet, this is certainly a huge leap in the right direction. I'll definitely try keep up on these kinds of developments from now on.
Old 07-28-01, 12:28 PM
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The player converts anamorphic PAL DVDs to NTSC properly about half the time. The other half, you use an XY scale adjustment to stretch the image horizontal or vertical, whichever is needed.
Still sounds like a halfass player to me!

There is no such thing as perfect PAL to NTSC conversion and your post proves it. You should have gotten a multisystem HDTV if you wanted perfection!

Last edited by codefree; 07-28-01 at 12:30 PM.
Old 07-29-01, 02:48 PM
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Originally posted by codefree
There is no such thing as perfect PAL to NTSC conversion
This unfortunately appears to be true, for the time being, as far as in-player conversions go. Someone reported success with a standalone converter in another thread, so that looks like another viable option; though I understand that native support of a given signal in a monitor is the best choice.

So, my question now is this: yes, it does not exist, but is perfect PAL-to-NTSC conversion possible in a DVD Player? Could a player possibly be made to incorporate the circuitry of a standalone converter to better handle this? Since the market for such a beast would be severely limited, how much would something like this add to the cost of a player, I wonder?

Edited to add: Is it possible for a chip to be designed that more effectively dealt with this? Or can firmware be developed for current chips (like the one in the Malata) to do this? Again, I know that the market for this is miniscule, so I suppose I'm asking for mostly academic purposes.

Last edited by Jad; 07-29-01 at 04:12 PM.
Old 07-29-01, 04:43 PM
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What I'd like to know is - can HDTVs display both PAL and NTSC signals? HDTVs can display NTSC even though they aren't an NTSC tv. My PC Monitor is High Definition and can display both PAL and NTSC. I'm told that we are going to phase out NTSC within 6 years or so making our televisions obsolete. I assume that means PAL as well - so why can't an HDTV display a PAL signal just as well as an NTSC? Wouldn't it just display a hi-res image instead of either PAL or NTSC? I know DVDs are encoded with twice the resolution that a standard television is capable of... most are anyway.
Old 07-29-01, 08:28 PM
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Brett, the Region 0 with firmware upgradeability.

Macrovision is not disabled.

It's easy to stretch the image and all reports say getting is right is cake, so there are no worries. This is as good as we are going to get and so far NOBODY that has this player is complaining.

"Codefree", that may be YOUR opinion, but those that have seen the player do not share it. So there is no need to be rude (your post was certainly not kinder and gentler).

This player will do exactly what we need it to do: Present PAL DVDs on an NTSC with no image distortion, either via a perfect conversion, or through altering the XY setting. THIS IS NOT BRAIN SURGERY! I have personally talked with two people that have the player AND TODAY I SAW ONE ON AN HDTV WITH MY OWN EYES! Simply put, this player rocks. I was stunned at #1. How good PAL DVDs looked and #2. How easy it was to scale them to the proper ratio (of the 4 that I tired, 2 were perfect without that).

So if you don't like this player after not having seen it or used it, then please take the negativity somewhere else.

"Trigger", no normal HDTV cannot display PAL. Some can, if they are high end and built to take the frequency, but only then. There are also some multi-system HDTV's, but they are very hard to find in the U.S.

I will post a full review of this player in the next few days.
Old 07-30-01, 01:01 AM
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How did he lie to you? Technically, this player DOES give you perfect PAL->NTSC conversion. That simply means that with this machine, you can achieve a perfect PAL->NTSC conversion which is precisely what it lets you do. The statement makes no claims of _how_ it goes about doing this, such as automatically yielding perfect results. That was your assumption.
Old 07-30-01, 12:22 PM
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Codefree, please chill. It's all good. Just don't jump to conclusions on this thing. I've seen it with my own eyes and can confirm how incredible it is. Once I have the chance to sit down and give it a day long try out, then I'll post all my comments, good & bad.

If this is what we have been looking for, then we need to embrace it!
Old 07-30-01, 01:56 PM
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Originally posted by Matt Stevens

If this is what we have been looking for, then we need to embrace it!
Matt -

Does the player provide a way to adjust the image while maintaining the aspect ratio, or do you always have to "eyeball" it by tweaking separate X and Y controls?
Old 07-30-01, 02:12 PM
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Heads Up...

Looks like volume sales DO mean something.. the price on the website just DROPPED to $339 from $379, seems the massive influx of orders for this uint and they were able to buy them in larger quantities and get a better deal...

Mine's on order now..

Last edited by Londo; 07-30-01 at 02:36 PM.
Old 07-30-01, 02:54 PM
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Correct, they can now order more sets. Bad thing is, they don't have the stock to fill the current orders. I talked with on the phone and they were great. Very friendly.

As per the question of the XY, it took 3 clicks to get the PAL DVDs right (again, this was with a friend's player). I will post a detailed description of what has to be done when I get my player. I just hope they can ship it to me this week.
Old 07-30-01, 03:33 PM
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Has anyone tried this player on a 4:3 set using the s-video cable?
I
have an APEX 600a right now and some R2 movies show up stretched and in fullscreen even though they are actually Anamorphic widescreen discs. Will the xy adjustments allow me to watch them in widescreen on my 4:3 TV. In other words, can I bring back the black bars to restore the correct aspect ratio?

Thanks

-Brett
Old 07-30-01, 04:03 PM
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Originally posted by Brett
Has anyone tried this player on a 4:3 set using the s-video cable? I have an APEX 600a right now and some R2 movies show up stretched and in fullscreen even though they are actually Anamorphic widescreen discs. Will the xy adjustments allow me to watch them in widescreen on my 4:3 TV. In other words, can I bring back the black bars to restore the correct aspect ratio?
Brett - short answer.. yes!!!

Long answer, go prowl the avsforum and you get more details... but yes!
Old 07-30-01, 04:37 PM
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Originally posted by Matt Stevens
As per the question of the XY, it took 3 clicks to get the PAL DVDs right (again, this was with a friend's player). I will post a detailed description of what has to be done when I get my player.
More information on this process is sorely needed... If a current or future owner could possibly post before-and-after screen grabs of just how this works (in addition to, of course, a thorough written assessment), this would be very helpful. Thanks.
Old 07-30-01, 04:58 PM
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could you please post some of these reviews you have found i have done a couple of searches and had no luck. also after the PAL is converted is it output progessively?
Old 07-30-01, 05:20 PM
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Originally posted by Jad


More information on this process is sorely needed...
From the avsforum:

"With the Malata, I can scale in two ways. First, there's the zoom mode which maintains an aspect ratio; you just magnify or reduce the size of the picture. Then, there's x-y scaling with which you can increase or decrease the horizontal and vertical dimensions of the picture, independently . . . Also, there is a pan adjustment available to use to move the entire picture horizontally or vertically."

Lots more info here: http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/Forum4/HTML/003775.html
Old 07-30-01, 05:48 PM
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As I said, once my own player arrives, I will get anal retentive detailed on the PAL to NTSV conversion. Of course, there are more orders than players, so who knows if I will even get mine this week. Word spread like wildfire and they cannot keep up.

At least the price dropped by $50 because of the demand.
Old 07-30-01, 05:53 PM
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What would the benefit be of buying the higher priced default reigon 0 player?
Old 07-30-01, 07:00 PM
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the 'region 0' player is flash-upgradable to update the firmware, the 'region 1' player is not.. what you got is what you got (well, probably not entirely true.. I'm sure you could change out the eprom to upgrade the firmware, but it appears the r0 ones will take an upgrade CD)

Also the R0 player effectively start up 'region-free' so if you just want to 'stick it in and play' no matter what region your disc is, it's more convenient.. if you hit a RCE disc.. you will have to take a moment to switch to R1... obviously the opposite is the case ofr the R1 machine (ie. if you play mostly R1 and don't want to worry with RCE giving you a headace and will switch when necessary)

Last edited by Londo; 07-30-01 at 07:03 PM.

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