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Hitachi DV-P725U Progressive Player

Michael TLV writes:

Just a quick update on the review.  A person interested in the machine asked if I could verify if the problems that I saw on my unit were restricted to my unit. 

While I was out calibrating a unit in a local store, I took a look at their Hitachi unit to see if I could still see some of the problems I initially reported.

Well, to my disappointment, the red chroma problem was still present.  Reds literally pulsated which was annoying.  Add to that, the ghosting/image echo I had mentioned was even worse on this unit than on mine.  In the center of the image from left to right, the text was stable.  As you moved up or down, words developed a slight ghosting that increased the closer you got to the top and bottom edge.

I'm shaking my head here.  This one looked awful as well.

Two random samples, two poor performances ...


Original Report --------------

Michael TLV writes:  Hey Errol, here is a first look at the new Hitachi unit. DV-P725U Progressive Scan DVD player.

I picked it up for my parents about two weeks ago and finally got a chance to put it through some initial testing to see how this new machine stacks up with some of the other competitors in the field.

This machine sells in stores for about $300 Cdn ... and it is Hitachi's first foray into the 480P camp.

The unit touts some interesting features like the Faroudja DCDi deinterlacing chip which is also found in the Panasonic RP-56.

As per the norm, I do not really care about the various features and niceities of the unit. I just want to know how good the image is that it produces.

Well, to start off, I put up the AVIA TVL-200 resolution chart to determine how this player performs in terms of resolution. Looking at the 480i section first, the 6.75 mhz resolution limit was actually visible, although slightly murky. This is not bad at all for the 480i section since on most other machines, the interlaced section cannot display more than 500 lines anyway. Here we have a dirty although visible 540 lines ...

Next up, I looked at the 480P section and the full 540 lines were clearly visible ... as expected. This is where the problems begin. A closer examination of the 480P image ... with the TVL-200 frame showed that the DVD player was creating a double image ghost from about the midsection of the pattern down to the bottom of the screen. All the words and numbers had a small half intensity image offset about 2 to 3 mm below it. Disturbing. This is not good.

Next up, I wanted to take a look at chroma bug. Did this player have it or did they fix it?

First up, 480i ... and the chapter 4 from Toy story. The reds looked fairly solid and no chroma bug was seen. This is nice.

Then my hopes come crashing down to earth when I look at this same scene in 480P. I cannot say that it is chorma bug, since Stacey Spears would be a better person to address that point. What I can say is that the reds were not solid. The edge of the red objects had a slight red glow brighter than the rest of the object. Annoying. Something was definitely happening to the colour of red in the 480P domain.

Final observation. The 480P section has some type of banding artifact. This banding is visible for the left edge to the right edge of the screen The bands appear to be about 4 mm wide and vary in colour as it sweeps across the screen. Annoy ... bad ... unacceptable ...

What is left for me now is to look for some verification on what is happening here. As of this moment, this particular DVD player has to get the thumbs down from me in terms of performance. The price is right, but the performance is not there.

Oh yes, the DCDi works as expected. The flag in Video Essentials looks extremely smooth.