What Are Upconverting DVD Players?

Upconverting DVD Player


In order to understand what upconverting DVD players are, we first need to understand what upconversion is.

The word upconversion refers back to the way video players unnaturally increase standard-definition (SD) video to a greater resolution and clearness. Upconverting DVD players attempt to increase video quality and detail through software calculations that raise the initial 480p resolution in SD nearer to a DVD video’s 1080p High Definition (HD) resolution.

Is an upconverted video the same as HD video?

No. To be able to upconvert an SD video, an upconverting DVD player must place more information in to the video which wasn’t within the original. This method is not perfect, and most devices can’t perfectly mimic video data. On the other hand, HD video are shot in high definition from the very start – from the shooting to the final rendition – so you are seeing all the original video data with little if any digital manipulation.

Can you play Blu-ray DVDs on an upconverting DVD player?

No. Even the most sophisticated player won’t be able to play Bluray DVDs. This is because the lasers in the player are not equipped to read high-definition DVDs, unlike Blu-ray DVD players.

If you have SD movies, you don’t need to buy a DVD player with video upconversion capabilities. If you’ve got a Blu-ray player, it will automatically adjust the resolution of your videos as it uses the same software as regular DVD players. If you don’t have a Blu-Ray player, now is a good time to buy one. With a Blu-ray player, you have better entertainment options without parting with your old DVD disks.

There are manufacturers of upconverting DVD players that claim their players can upgrade the quality of any regular video to the quality of a Bluray DVD. However, there’s a big fundamental problem with that claim. An SD video has a resolution of 640×480 pixels at most. Furthermore, old-school analog SD videos aren’t shot in pixels, which are the building blocks of digital images. Most HDTVs these days have a display resolution of 1,920×1,080 pixels.

When upconversion happens, two problems occur: One, the SD video will need to be stretched to fill the HD screen. Two, the TV will need to make new pixels for the SD video to fit the screen. The result is a video that looks softer than an HD video, and by softer, we do mean a video that’s not as rich in color as a real HD video.

Luckily for us, upconversion technology has gotten better over the years and there are signs that it’s getting better. The processors in today’s TVs have become more powerful and will do a passable job at the very least. But even if you don’t have an upcoverting TV set, it really doesn’t matter because of Blu-ray players, which do a better job at upconversion. Playing your old DVD on a Blu-ray DVD player is your best option for upgrading your video from SD to HD.



A Few Alternative Files to MP3 for your Digital Music

When most people think of music playback, at least on portable devices, they think of mp3. The interesting thing about it, however, is that many people have absolutely no idea what an mp3 actually is! It is in fact a file format, but what does it stand for?


The Backstory on Mp3

Mp3 is a format designed by the Moving Picture Experts Group(MPEG) and started with the MPEG-2 format. Later, it would expand into MPEG-1 Part 3 which would include audio layer 1, 2, and of course, 3. This format, known as Mp3, would go on to become one of the most popular and compatible formats on the market, but it is by no means the only one. Let’s take a look at a few other popular ones.

cd-158817_640mp3PRO: This is a proprietary codec which is able to combine the Mp3 audio format with SBR, or spectral band repication. The idea behind this format is to reduce the size of a stereo Mp3 by 50% while still maintaining both the integrity and the quality of the original file.

AAC: Also known as Advanced Audio Coding, AAC is another lossy format(meaning it does not maintain the full integrity of the original file) and it was designed to succeed the MP3 format. It is a common format, though it has not quite usurped the mp3 as of yet. AAC is standardized by ISO and IEC, and is a part of the MPEG-2/MPEG-4 specifications.

MP4: Much like the Mp3, this format is able to store forms of data other than audio. The Mp4 can easily store audio, video, and even still images. Additionally, just like any other format, it allows for streaming over the internet. Finally, most Mp3 players will easily support this format.

MP2: The MPGEG Layer 2 format is a great audio container, however it is dwarfed by the popularity of the Mp3, at least as far as the internet is concerned. The Mp2, however, is considered to be the preferred method for audio broadcasting.

FLAC: The Free Lossless Audio Codec is, as the name suggests, a lossless codec, meaning the full integrity of the audio file is kept intact. In addition to that, the audio can be compressed to 60% of its original size.

These are a few of the more common alternatives to the Mp3 format. There are of course other formats out there that you might consider taking advantage of, and soon enough the MP3 format might actually be phased out completely. It is difficult to say when that will be, but these alternatives, particularly AAC and Mp4 are serving as a gateway to the future. change is difficult, but sometimes it is for the better, especially if the size of the Mp3 can be decreased significantly during the next few years. As luck would have it, more devices are being outfitted with compatibility for different formats, giving you full reign to choose the format that you want in the future.

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Portable DVD Player Buying Guides

If you happen to be looking for a new portable DVD player, you are likely going to want to be sure that you find the best one for your money. In order to find the best one, you will need to be sure that you look at different features and benefits of each device to make the right decision. Below we will discuss some of the top things to look for when trying to purchase a portable DVD player.

portable dvd player
Portable DVD Player


What To Look For:

1. Compatibility.

The very first thing that you are going to need to look for is whether or not the portable player is going to be able to play all of your DVD’s. A lot of portable players only play certain DVD’s or certain formats. For example, if you burn your own DVD’s, you will want to be sure that it is going to be able to play them. Otherwise, your library might not even be compatible with the player.

2. Portability.

Headrest DVD Player
Headrest DVD Player


Obviously, if you are looking for a portable player, you are likely going to value portability over a lot of other features. Therefore, it is important that you look at the overall portability of the player and determine whether or not it is portable enough for your needs. Depending on how big it is and what shape it is, you might find certain players to be more portable than others.

3. Price.

Another thing that you are likely going to want to factor into your decision is the price. The price will likely play a critical role in determining which product you should purchase because your goal should be to purchase the best quality player for the money. You will want to purchase a product with the best value proposition depending on your specific needs. Never purchase a product solely based on the price. However, it should come into the equation at some point.

4. Features.

The next thing that you should consider before making a purchasing decision is what type of features it offers. Is the player able to connect with your television or computer monitor? Is it able to connect to your cell phone? Is it able to connect to a projector to display the image on a wall? These are the features that you are going to want to be sure that you look for. If you see a player with the features that you want in a product, you might edge that product over the others.

5. Warranty.

The warranty should always be considered when purchasing an electronic. It is important to consider the warranty because it is going to determine how difficult of a time you have replacing your device should it stop working for some reason. It is always better to be protected by a manufacturers warranty in case something goes wrong.

As you can see, there is plenty to consider when you are trying to find the best possible portable player to purchase on the market.