Vista to the rescue!

Under my policy of credit where it’s due. The Ark of Truth DVD is Widescreen, but my (SD) TV isn’t. So I was going to play the DVD on my PC. I haven’t gotten around to installing a DVD player yet, so I figured I should give Vista’s Media Center a chance, and frankly I was very pleased but the quality was a bit grainy.

Thinking it might be some DRM thing or just not a very good default codec (preserving some marketplace for the DVD player industry) I switched back to XP. Nada. To the Asus website (I’m not sure why). A firmware update? Ok. Download, run… Blue screen. Boot problems.

I couldn’t get it to flash. In desperation I booted Vista and tried flashing from Vista.

Succeess.

I still have the issue of grainy playback. It’s not terrible, but its just not the quality I would have expected. I guess I’ll download a WinDVD trial if there is one and try that. But Yay for Vista! I’ve finally used it for something other than Solitaire/Spider Solitaire :)

4 Comments

http://www.videolan.org/vlc/

i run vista and use media center to watch TV (SD) but i prefer VLC’s player for DVDs.

if you can find nvidia’s DVD codec install that (pressuming you have a nvidia card of course). the nvidia codec really is the cat’s ass for PC based DVD playback. VLC’s coded (ffdshow iirc) is solid but not quite as good. I don’t know what vista’s default dvd codec is.

IMO it might just be a combination of the fact you are viewing it on LCD and (probably) sitting closer to it than normal because it’s on your PC.

Unless your LCD is exactly the resolution of the image being displayed it has to be scaled and LCD scales badly. Set your windows desktop to display at 800 x 600 on a LCD screen with a native resoluton of 1280 x 1024 and you see a similar effect.

Old tech CRTs handled scaling much IMO.

It wasn’t pixelated, it was grainy, like bad reception or footage from a low-light cam.

I had tried to download purevideo from the nVidia site but couldn’t find it even though I’ve downloaded it before. I also installed a couple of codec packs under XP to try and view it but they had variously unsatisfactory qualities.

I suspect the movie is just in standard def.

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