OK, crow eating time. It appears the enhancement circuits in the JVC do in fact brighten the image a bit during recording. Very light areas are somewhat brighter than the original.
Here's the test: I played back THX DVD test patterns using my Panasonic E50, ran the s-video out to my AverMedia card, captured an AVI, etc.
Then I ran the s-video out from the E50 in to the JVC and recorded the same test pattern DVD material to a DVD-RW. I then took the DVD-RW from the JVC and played it back in the Panasonic, capturing to the computer again. Oh, and I used SP (2 hr) record mode on the JVC.
Original THX DVD test pattern played back on Panasonic E50:
Same pattern recorded by the JVC, then played back on the Panasonic:
On the test patterns, the difference is slight, most noticeable at the light end of the grey scale. Don't forget that you have to position each frame in the same place on your monitor one at a time to compare fairly (especially with a flat panel LCD).
One nice thing this points out, though... the clarity and accuracy of the recording is extremely good. Practically identical to the original.... even the small lettering at the bottom is very clear and easy to read. Maybe those folks that ask us about recording from a DVD player to a DVD recorder are not so nutty after all! The result here is pretty darn good.
Here is another frame that is more telling... first the original:
Now the JVC recording played back on the Panasonic:
Again, the recording is slightly lighter - most noticeably in the clouds/snowy horizon area. BTW, the vertical lines are some type of noise I always get when I capture with the AverMedia card (one of the reasons I capture with the DVD recorder now).
OK, so there does appear to be a very mild lightening effect with the JVC recorder. It is probably caused by the pre-encoding "DigiPure" enhancement circuits and filters, which are there to improve poor picture quality and reduce video noise. I would hardly call the results "washed out", though. IMHO, YMMV
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Nah...no crow to be eaten. I'm just glad that I'm not insane. It's funny though, my first thought was a Kenwood THX demo disk I inherited and you beat me to it. Thanks everyone for the hard work and the help. I have been playing with the 8710 and it looks like it can bring everything back to where it started if not make it a little "better"(subjectively speaking of course) I am wondering if ejai might be on the right track with the issue of original source black levels. I have gone back through a couple of captures and it looks like on "true black" sections, the black seems to be less affected than on some of the grey-tone/mid-black areas. Most of my recordings are older VHS anime which is not the easiest thing to capture in the first place and tends to show errors that may not be as readily visible with live action recordings. Other than this issue, the recoder has been flawless and it looks like this issue can be worked around....
Thanks again everyone,
Have fun and enjoy your new toy! :P
Originally Posted by gshelley61
If you use a video corrector of some sort you can make the video the correct lightness. This takes nothing away from the oustanding quality that the JVC has, and I still think the JVC has the best picture I've seen so far. What I've found is if the source is excellent and has deep black then the capture will be great, if not there is a need for a color enhancement device.
Agreed. And I hope you get yours back ASAP!
gshelley61, thank you for all your efforts in presenting the strenghts and weakneses of this DVD recorder. You are doing an outstanding service to our community.
Just for the record, I played that test DVD-RW recording (the THX patterns and the Ice Age reference clip) on my 46" Samsung DLP using a Bravo D1 DVD player. It looks awesome, really. The test patterns look almost as good as the originals, and the Ice Age clip... well, let's just say you would be very hard pressed to tell that it was a recording of the analog s-video output of another DVD player. The lightening/brightening effect is barely perceptible. The frame stills captured on the computer are lighter than the DVD-RW actually is.
Originally Posted by ejai
I don't have a big screen TV and my TV is nearly 20 years old.
I do have the AVT-8710. What settings would I need to make to "fix" this problem?
With AVT-8710 I usually press the brightness button down 1-2 clicks and depending on the movie I would press the contrast button up 1 click. This usually puts the movie in an exceptable black level setting.
Then when I play it back on my computer and Televisions the video fits in perfectly with my store bought and E50 videos,
This usually works for me.
Sharpness adjustments tend to enhance the contrast somewhat as they are increased, too.
Here are a couple of frames from PayCheck(DSS as the source), one from Tivo and the other from JVC:
TiVo (Recoded at Best 8.75Mbps VBR 780x480)
JVC (Recorded in XP mode)
The problem with the JVC is not just with brightness but lack of contrast too, this may not be the ideal source but just an example and it's worst in SP or lower modes.
Again, a slight difference (the JVC recording is a bit lighter). That sure is one bright frame sample, though!
BTW, is that movie any good? Just curious as I'm a big Blade Runner fan...
Originally Posted by gshelley61
Paycheck is so so, this is clip from PPV on Dish which has a signal that's bit too bright for my taste, maybe I should try the original DVD.
Blade Runner is another story, when it came out in LD sure made a big group of followers.
Originally Posted by JSquare
I know some Panasonic E30 users are mad as hell. They probably feel the this problem is identical to the black level bug and we for some reason we don't want to label it that. Well it at times is very close to the black level bug, but what makes me not conclude that as the fact is because some video comes out fine showing none or very little change in brightness and contrast. While the Panasonic and some other models are consistantly bright.
Also the JVC picture quality is great.