How to improve DVD recording of satellite hdtv?

Just got a second DVD player from Santa - LiteOn 5005 - and have connected it to my Hdtv system in the basement.
The system is BellExpressVu (Canada) 6100 reciever and Samsung 1080i HCP4741W projection tv. My hdtv feed is “Component 1” and works great on its own, but when viewing / recording thru LiteOn 5005 is much lower quality. I set it up last night and it all works fine, but I’d like to know how to improve recorded picture quality, or whether I’ve done anything obviously stupid - thx.

Current cabling set up (with pics in order ExpressVu reciever, LiteOn DVD, Samsung tv):

BellExpressVu satellite hdtv signal input to 6100 reciever box, then output as component video (Y/Pb/Pr) and audio L/R to Samsung TV. They input to Samsung TV as Component 1.

BellExpressVu 6100 box line output video (yellow/white/red) to Liteon 5005 DVD recorder as line in video.

Liteon DVD recorder line output video (yellow/white/red) and RFoutput to Samsung hdtv line input AV1 and RF input.
The tv also has s-video input althought this isn’t shown in picture.

Prof. Honeydew: I can’t help you with your connections but I’m glad I’m not the only one with toys in their basement. One of these days, we may want to do a test for Radon.

By the way - It’s an impressive system.

You’re using composite video for HD images. If the receiver does not have an SVHS video out to feed to the recorder, then you’re stuck with this setup. Quality of composite video feeds from many components is just crap. Likewise for recording quality.

I am not familiar with your receiver, but here the sat boxes have settings for how the HD signals are down-sampled to SD (4:3). Those settings should be looked at. I use a “squeeze” setting that squeezes the 16:9 image down to 4:3, and I record that via SVHS. Then when I play back the DVD via component outputs, I use the monitor settings to stretch it back to 16:9. The results are quite good on a 52" monitor.

In essence, you want your sat receiver to output a signal that is what you would use if your monitor was not 16:9 and HD. Some receivers will not output both HD and SD via the different outputs at the same time, so YMMV.

What I do is monitor the component output from the DVD recorder, stretched to 16:9, while I input the various type signals to the DVD recorder from the sat box. When I find the one I want, I’m set to record. If your monitor has enough component and HDMI inputs, you can do this easily. You definitely need to be monitoring the DVD recorder through component, not composite.

Hope this helps.

Hi again, thanks for comments.

I have 2 separate systems set up really… don’t know if this is splitting the signal and causing lack of HD to be seen through DVD recorder.

The first is for viewing HDTV, with component output from satellite reciever directly into component input 1 of TV.

The second is for the DVD recorder with composite output from satellite reciever into DVD recorded, then composite output into tv.

The problem is that the DVD recorder does not have a component input, so can’t recieve a component signal from the sat reciever.
The DVD recorder does have component output, which could be connected to the tv component input 2. I haven’t done this yet as there didn’t seem much point with the DVD recorder having composite input only (plus I need to buys some cables…)

Does anyone know if s-video can be used instead of component for improved quality over composite?

Also, I played with settings in sat reciever, dvd recorder and tv for 4:3 / 16:9, and can control that setting at all 3 stages. I tried all options, but don’t find change in picture quality viewed through DVD recorder input, so that doesn’t look to be the issue.

One last thing - the DVD recorder has video output modes of interlaced and progressive - I can’t enable the progressive right now. I’m a rookie on this, but I think the tv should be compatible for progressive if I get the cabling right - can anyone confirm this or offer ideas?
Thanks :slight_smile:

There’s no such thing as a DVD recorder that will record HD or even 16:9 from a sat box. Thank the MPAA for that.

Your biggest problem is that you’re monitoring the recorder via composite video, so the picture is degraded even more than it actually is. ONLY by monitoring the recorder via component can you really know how good the picture actually is. If your monitor does not have multiple component inputs, then you need to find a switching box or an audio receiver that will do this for you. Every step that uses composite video will degrade the picture.

SVHS is vastly superior to composite, by all means use that if you can. It may also enable progressive scan, though probably not. Progressive really requires component cabling, your recorder probably will not enable progressive except through component out.

IMHO, for the sat box to the recorder, SVHS is absolutely necessary for best picture quality. For the recorder to the monitor, component is absolutely necessary.

As many monitors do not have multiple component and HDMI inputs, a switching solution is required for a setup like yours. I like Yamaha home theater receivers, as they offer a multitude of input options and up-scaling too. A monitor like yours demands a minimum of component input to see a good picture. Your current setup is like driving a Ferrari on a gravel road. :iagree:

Edit: looks like your monitor does have 2 component inputs, you need to use the #2 for the DVD recorder. also the sat box and DVD do have SVHS, you need to connect those. And get rid of all composite connectors.

After a quick trip to BesBuy to get a new pile of Rocketfish cables (plus a bunch of other stuff that I hadn’t planned to buy :slight_smile: ) I’ve re-wired the system.
I now have the s-video and L/R audio from the satellite reciever into the DVD player, and then component output from DVD recorder into the tv. Picture quality much improved and progressive scan enabled. Many thanks for advice! :flower: :bow:

No problemo. Enjoy.