Not enough inputs on new 428XD TV!

gregch

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Thanks to the great advice from this magazine and forum, I have a 428XD TV, which I'm really pleased with. However, one thing that wasn't very clear (or I was too stupid to understand) was that the number of inputs isn't the same thing as the number of inputs. What I mean is, the TV has 3 x Scart inputs, 3 x HDMI inputs, 1 x Component, 1 x Composite, 1 x VGA = 9 inputs. But in fact, it only has 5 actual inputs - for each of which you can choose a physical input from the 9 sockets available. And the 5th one is on the side of the TV and intended for temporary connection of camcorder, etc. So, in reality, the set has 'only' 4 inputs. Now, I have a Sky box, Sony DAV-IS10 DVD and surround, and Wii connected already. I have a VCR connected via the Sky box. So I have only used 3 inputs. But - in the future, I'd like to add a Blu-ray player (audio would be fed through the existing DVD/surround head unit) *and* either AppleTV or Mac mini based home media unit - both connected via HDMI. Basically, my expensive new TV still doesn't have enough actual inputs to suit modern needs - and it has more than most! Perhaps the only answer is to replace the DAV-IS10 with a massive surround amp that has 'hundreds' of inputs and connect that to the TV with a single HDMI. And 8 of the sockets stay unused! Surely it would be nicer for the TV to have a dedicated input 'channel' for each of its physical inputs? Any ideas why it doesn't?
 
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Anonymous

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good question, guess it's a cost thing. get a big amp, it's the way too go.
 

Alsone

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I think as you correctly identified, these days the trend is to route most things through the amp although this does mean having the amp turned on even if not using it technically ie using TV sound.

You don't necessarily need an expensive amp though. I don't know how you have your 428XD connected but mine is as follows:

Tv to amp via optical and

DVD to TV via HMDI via Amp.

Now whereas I don't have as many components as you, this does leave even with an Onkyo 605, 1 more HDMI input free (2 inputs , 1 out) , and 2 free HDMI inputs on the tv.

So your blu ray could go through a modest dedicated amp like the Onkyo - get rid of the DVD player !!! (Why are you keeping the DVD when you have BluRay as most BR players also upscale DVD? BR sound will loose so much quality via an integrated amp / dvd as especially now HD sound formats are here).

The Sky box could go via scart unless its HD which might need HDMI direct to the tv.

The Wii could go through the amp via the other HDMI if HDMI needed.

The media centre could use the 3rd HDMI on the tv.

I believe that covers all the components and all via HDMI. Obviously if some didn't need HDMI, then you could free other HDMI inputs for the future by using other connections.

I'm presuming the reason why they don't put more HDMI connections is price and physical space. No doubt in the future as everything moves to HDMI, we'll see less analogue connections such as scart and more HDMi ports.

You can also now buy HDMI splitter boxes which double or even triple a ports capability:

http://www.keene.co.uk/electronic/aten/aten-vs481-hdmi-switchbox-41/VS481.html

This one costs £46 at Keene.

VS481_DIAGRAM.jpg
 
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Anonymous

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Hi All

Can someone clarify for me the initial point being made on this thread re the number of INPUTS.

I can't be the only one who has always assumed that if a TV is advertised as having 3 x HDMI, 3 x Scart etc etc then all these INPUTS are available for use if required.

Frankly, I'm staggered to find out that the TV doesn't have a "dedicated input channel for each of its physical inputs".

How annoying would it be to find that out after you've just spent £1500 buying what is supposed to be top dog of Plasma TVs.
 

gregch

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@Paulo: Sure, you've picked up exactly on what my point was - that's exactly it. Like you, I'd assumed that all the physical inputs could be used, but in fact the TV only has 4 inputs* - and you choose which physical 'socket' is used for each input.

So, you can have 3 x Scart devices connected and one HDMI, or 3 x HDMI and 1 scart, BUT you can't have 3 x Scart AND 3 x HDMI - even though all those inputs all physically exist.

@others: Thanks for your help, but I'd like to avoid separate switchboxes - having bought an expensive TV I'd hoped I'd end up with something a little more elegant and sophisticated than that! And I'm very happy with the DAV-IS10 surround unit so I don't really want an AV amp.

In fact, I'm OK with the setup as is, but as Paolo has said, I was just a bit staggered that you can't actually have more than 4 inputs connected to the TV, despite all its myriad sockets. So the point of my post was just to be a 'heads up' to anyone that might not be aware!

G.

*Actually, there's also a 5th input dedicated to the 'temporary' inputs on the side of the TV.
 

peanutfrenzy

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I know exactly where you're coming from, I didn't realise this was the case until I saw a Pioneer remote - four inputs. Does anyone out there know if all current TVs are like this, or is it just a Pioneer thing?

As for getting around it I'm going to agree with Alsone - a dedicated AV amplifier with HDMI switching and HD audio decoding would be a good way to go, especially if you're investing in Blu-Ray. But, as you point out, you don't want to change your existing DAV-IS10. I did have a thought, but it is a bodge and I have absolutely no idea if it will work. Some time ago I had to (temporarily) force an AV amp to accept more audio inputs. I did this by connecting one source via analogue phono, and another (an Xbox) via optical digital into the same input channel. With the digital source switched off the amp defaulted to the analogue input, but turn on the Xbox and the amp detects a digital signal and switches to that instead. As HDMI is digital and component/scart are analogue you might be able to do the same thing. They will be separately buffered and shouldn't interfere with one another, but I would assume the HDMI source would have to be switched off (or in standby) to use the component or scart on the same input. Now I'll say again that this is a bodge, I haven't done it with video sources and I have no idea if it will actually work - so don't blame me if you try it and something goes bang! And in any case this won't increase the number of HDMI inputs, it'll just add component and scart. Like I said, just a thought.
 

gregch

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[quote user="peanutfrenzy"]
I know exactly where you're coming from, I didn't realise this was the case until I saw a Pioneer remote - four inputs. Does anyone out there know if all current TVs are like this, or is it just a Pioneer thing?

As for getting around it I'm going to agree with Alsone - a dedicated AV amplifier with HDMI switching and HD audio decoding would be a good way to go, especially if you're investing in Blu-Ray. But, as you point out, you don't want to change your existing DAV-IS10. I did have a thought, but it is a bodge and I have absolutely no idea if it will work. Some time ago I had to (temporarily) force an AV amp to accept more audio inputs. I did this by connecting one source via analogue phono, and another (an Xbox) via optical digital into the same input channel. With the digital source switched off the amp defaulted to the analogue input, but turn on the Xbox and the amp detects a digital signal and switches to that instead. As HDMI is digital and component/scart are analogue you might be able to do the same thing. They will be separately buffered and shouldn't interfere with one another, but I would assume the HDMI source would have to be switched off (or in standby) to use the component or scart on the same input. Now I'll say again that this is a bodge, I haven't done it with video sources and I have no idea if it will actually work - so don't blame me if you try it and something goes bang! And in any case this won't increase the number of HDMI inputs, it'll just add component and scart. Like I said, just a thought.

[/quote]

I have a feeling that *might* work. But, right now, I don't have an issue. I still have input 4 unused, so if I add a blu-ray player or a media server (e.g. Apple TV) I can plug it in via one of the spare HDMIs and all's good.

I believe I even have a spare digital audio input on the DAV-IS10. (I'm using the optical in for the Sky+ so could use the coax in for a Blu-ray player, and the TV is connected via analog - interestingly, this works exactly as you suggest, i.e. the DAV-IS10 will default to its analog input if it doesn't find a digital one).

My only problem will come if I want to add a Blu-ray player AND a media server ;-)
 

Alsone

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I still say get a dedicated amp.

You've bought a top of the range screen and are running what is probably a sub par quality sound / picture source when compared to quality seperates.

I've been amazed by the quality of sound from my new set up when compared to my old Pioneer all in one system that cost £500 when I 1st purchased it.

I would admit I've got expensive speakers as well now but initially provided the impedance of the DAV-IS10's speakers are suitable for use with an amp like the Onkyo, there's no reason why you couldn't connect them to a new receiver to save buying new speakers until you felt able to make that investment. It would be a compromise but with a better source signal from both a dedicated DVD / Blu Ray player and the amp, you would almost certainly still notice improvement and with connections made as per my system, it would give you a little more flexibilty of the connection front without needing a switching box.
 
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Anonymous

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the sony DAV-IS10's speaker won't work with a traditional av amp. they have dedicated connections, not bare wire. also the sub takes care of midrange and also has a unique connection.

either use the Dav-IS10 elsewhere and go for new amp/player/speakers or just add an hdmi splitter.
 

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