Print 100 comment(s) - last by VooDooAddict.. on Nov 20 at 11:33 AM

Suddenly, the bundle at CompUSA all makes sense now

Reports are flooding in that PlayStation 3 is unable to upscale its video output, leaving many with older HDTV's, including those from Sony, out in the cold of standard definition.

Early word came in from the NeoGAF forums, where users with 1080i TV sets tried to run Resistance: Fall of Man, only to find that the game would force a switch down to 480p. The reason behind this is that Resistance runs at a native 720p resolution. If the game is played on a television that does not support 720p, which applies to many older HDTV models, then instead of upscaling to 1080i to retain its HD status, it downscales to 480p, losing much graphical fidelity. 

"Sony and Insomniac, I am very, very dissapointed. Resistance will not output in 1080i. It's either 720p, or a 480p blur fest. What a pain in the ass it's going to be to change the screen resolution in the XMB everytime I want to play. Not to mention having to deal with the bad quality resulting from my CRT HDTV's crappy upscaling algorithms," wrote forum member Vincey37.

When attempting to run Resistance on a TV set not running in 720p, the following message is displayed: 

"The maximum display resolution is currently set to 1080i. For highest image quality 720p is recommended. To change this setting, you must exit the application and change your Video Output Settings from the Display Settings option in the Settings menu. Press the START button to continue"

A response from a supposed Insomniac developer read, "This isn't our fault guys - we were set to support it," without going into further details. 

So the situation right now is that anyone with an HDTV that's capable of only 480i, 480p, and 1080i will be unable to play games such as Resistance, NHL 2K7, Tiger Woods PGA Tour 07 and Need for Speed Carbon at anything higher than 480p.

Upscaling is currently found in many HDMI DVD players that convert 480p images to 720p or 1080i, producing slightly improved picture quality. the Xbox 360 also upscales its games (albeit with analog component output instead of HDMI), which nearly all are developed to run at 720p, to 1080i for those who are unable to run at the native resolution.

Sony has yet to comment on reports of this discovery, and it is unknown whether or not this apparent oversight can be addressed via system updates.

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Looking better all th time for Sony
By ViperROhb34 on 11/16/2006 11:04:18 AM , Rating: 2
So the situation right now is that anyone with an HDTV that's capable of only 480i, 480p, and 1080i will be unable to play games such as Resistance, NHL 2K7, Tiger Woods PGA Tour 07 and Need for Speed Carbon at anything higher than 480p.

Nice to know MS didn't fuck up in this way.. at least the 360 upscales.. I can't believe Sony dropped this one.. again.

By bunnyfubbles on 11/16/2006 11:10:19 AM , Rating: 5
is it really hard to believe, or are you just saying that for effect?

after all these Sony "screw ups", I'm becoming less and less surprised with time...

RE: Looking better all th time for Sony
By peternelson on 11/17/2006 7:47:43 PM , Rating: 1

So you're saying the x360 upscales 720p games and outputs 1080 output.....

SO it does a 2>3 pixel upscale ie a BLUR on all its output!


Of course since it only uses analogue cabling instead of HDMI, you are unlikely to notice the quality loss!

That approach is really not desirable for quality reasons. The PS3 is doing it properly.

It will work fine with any reasonably modern screen. If your tv is outdated, buy a dedicated scaler box to add the feature that should have been in the tv originally ;-)

RE: Looking better all th time for Sony
By oTAL on 11/19/2006 9:27:42 AM , Rating: 2
Dude... do you even know what upscalling is?
You can interpolate information from surrounding pixels to draw the missing ones. That means that, with a good device, the upscalled image will even look slightly BETTER than the original one. Try to learn a little bit more before laughing on someoneelse's post or you'll look like an idot...
Well.. I guess this is why the rating system was invented...

By geeg on 11/16/2006 11:14:41 AM , Rating: 2
can it upscale to 1080p? even the game does not support 1080i?
how about 1080p games running on 1080i? is there any 1080p game at all?

RE: resolution
By photoguy99 on 11/16/2006 11:35:09 AM , Rating: 2
Answer is no - It can't scale these games to 1080i or 1080p.

Seems like Sony decisions are made behind some kind of barrier that separates them from real people.

RE: resolution
By rtrski on 11/16/2006 12:11:25 PM , Rating: 2
But any 1080p capable monitor should be able to do its own upscaling from 720p or 1080i without too much issue. So the 1080p lack isn't that pertinent, just the 1080i.

RE: resolution
By photoguy99 on 11/16/2006 12:56:21 PM , Rating: 2
any 1080p capable monitor should be able to do its own upscaling

No way man. If you mean TV's then that's probably true most of the time.

But as an example most desktop monitors wont do this. My new desktop monitor supports 1080p, but would barf all over the PS3 and not display anything.

RE: resolution
By Lazarus Dark on 11/16/2006 12:52:13 PM , Rating: 2
upscaling was one of the things i was wondering about. does it upscale ps2 games? does it upscale dvds? if so how does it look,say compared to the low end upscaling dvd players out there? with linux will it be able to play divx and other files via harddrive or network and will it upscale those? not that I really plan to get one, but I am curious.

This is really BAD for PS3
By ATC on 11/16/2006 11:30:50 AM , Rating: 3
I have a Sony 51" HDTV that accepts 480i/p, 720p and 1080i signals, but looking in the manual last night it specifically says that 720p will be downscaled to 480p!

My Xbox 360 up scales to 1080i, yet the PS3 will not do this? WTF is Sony thinking?

I was going to buy the PS3 partly as a Blu-Ray player. But, what good is Blu-Ray at 480p?

RE: This is really BAD for PS3
By ED666 on 11/16/2006 12:16:12 PM , Rating: 2
If it really can't upscale ANY image up to 1080i or 1080p, then this could be very bad for those with older HDTV sets, who thought they could use it as a Blu-Ray player.

Watching films in 480p is going to suck big time...

I really hope they can fix this, or basically thats the big Blu-Ray/PS3 argument almost gone...

RE: This is really BAD for PS3
By Hotdogah on 11/16/2006 2:52:21 PM , Rating: 2
I agree, I was going to purchase one early next year when they were in stock and prices had stabilized. I have a 2.5 year old Panasonic HDTV that supports 1080i, not 720p. My 360 outputs perfectly at 1080i. This seems like a huge problem for sony. My HD tvs lifespan isent over yet, except for with the PS3.

RE: This is really BAD for PS3
By z0mgpwnr on 11/17/2006 4:17:06 PM , Rating: 1
You should have done the same thing with your TV purchase. I held off on buying an HDTV for a long time because of issues exactly like this.

Slightly overreacting
By cplusplus on 11/16/2006 3:06:36 PM , Rating: 4
Not to say that this isn't bad news (it is), but I think everyone is jumping the gun on this and seeing what they want to see (just like every other post related to consoles).

What the PS3 can do: Downscale 1080p made content (which includes all blu-ray) to 1080i from everything I have heard and read.

What the PS3 cannot do: Upscale 480p (DVD) or 720p content to 1080i.

Even if they can't fix this with software, it wouldn't be particularly difficult for them to make an HD cable that looks like the old XBOX component cable thing that has a scaler in it to allow upscaling, then sell it for $20-$30. Especially since the PS3 doesn't come with HD cables to begin with, if I remember correctly.

P.S. - Whoever that developer at Insomniac is really threw Sony under the bus on this one. "We were ready to support it?" Then why didn't you make the game at 1080i and allow it to "downscale" to 720p?

RE: Slightly overreacting
By ATC on 11/16/2006 5:09:04 PM , Rating: 2
It isn't a big problem for those who don't own one of the hundreds of thousands of early(er) HDTVs like myself. And my HDTV isn't a no-name brand but rather a Sony 51" HDTV.

The vast majority of PS3 games are in 720p. Also, my understanding is that Blu-Ray movies may be in 720p and all stand alone Blu-Ray players have build in up-scalers to 1080i. So, with the PS3 we're losing both the HD gaming advantage as well as the Blu-Ray advantage if we have one of those earlier HDTVs.

Here's hoping for a fix or a cable that upscales as you mention.

RE: Slightly overreacting
By photoguy99 on 11/16/2006 5:39:11 PM , Rating: 2
that developer at Insomniac is really threw Sony under the bus on this one. "We were ready to support it?" Then why didn't you make the game at 1080i and allow it to "downscale" to 720p?

Very simple reason, performance.

The quote implies they had to turn down the resolution because the PS3 wasn't "fast enough" to run it smoothly at 1080p.

Caveat: I don't know if the quote was real, and it could be their game engine is not efficient..

By z0mgpwnr on 11/17/2006 9:50:37 AM , Rating: 1
People are overlooking an important factor....

Sony is spending $840 to manufacture each PS3. They are making these consoles at a loss. Why should we expect them to cater to low end technology? I would rather have the PS3 support 1080p (as it currently does) than have then spend countless hours of R&D figuring out how to best display it on a POS TV.

The point of digital video is that it's lossless, well at least the signal is. If you want it to look decent on the TV let the TV scale the picture, i.e. use analog inputs, then it will be rendering at 720p still and your TV will make the best of it. I feel bad for Sony that they get these kinds of nonsense reviews.

RE: Noobz
By ATC on 11/17/2006 11:01:10 AM , Rating: 2
On the contrary, Sony is squarely placing the PS3 in the POS category by not incorporating a very cheap/highly available item called a scaler. Oh how the Xbox360 has it and the PS3 coming out a year later and costing a lot more won't have. Hmm....Can anyone spell out 'oversight'?

Oh, and my POS TV, as you say, is a Sony 51" HDTV that all my friends with LCD and Plasma TVs envy for its picture quality in 1080i (1080i is, incidentally, the most common HDTV broadcast feed). Go troll somewhere else.

RE: Noobz
By derubermensch1 on 11/17/2006 12:49:26 PM , Rating: 2
1080i isnt low end technology and neither is a TV that supports it and not 720p. My neighbors just bought a 46" Samsung LCD and they are more impressed with my picture quality when watching NFL Sunday Ticket in HD on my CRT based HDTV. Most consoles launch at a loss to the parent company, Sony isn't doing us any new favor by selling it to us for less than cost. This is the norm. Also, there would not be countless hours of R&D spent on including a scaler and it would not come at a loss of having 1080p support. By the way, if you want people to apply some sort of merit to your post you should probably consider not using "Noobz" as the title, especially when it contains information that has been widely accepted, and not overlooked, as common knowledge by anyone who follows console gaming. If you even own an HDTV, does it support 1080p? If it doesn't, does that now make it a POS because of your low-end 720p support? If you have 720p support, and not 1080p, will you be mad when Sony makes a game that runs in native 1080p but you have to view it in 480p or will you be aquiescent? Add a scaler, problem solved, for consumers and developers alike.

RE: Noobz
By z0mgpwnr on 11/17/2006 4:05:05 PM , Rating: 1
I'm sorry but if you spend any money on a TV and it isn't at least 720p then you are throwing money out the window. The PS3 shows that.

Back to my original comment. They are already losing upwards of $240 on each console they sell. I don't blame them for not spending the time and money to cater to this need. If you want a top end console get a top end TV. I've got a Samsung 56" DLP @1080p.

I just mainly didn't like the title of this thread it's misleading. The PS3 isn't lacking anything. Your TVs are.

RE: Noobz
By derubermensch1 on 11/17/2006 5:36:26 PM , Rating: 2
I agree, you'd be insane to buy an HDTV if it didn't support a wide gamut of display modes...if you were buying one now. 720p CRTs were not widespread or even really available and affordable 4-5 years ago when we bought our sets. It's not like we have 10-15 year old TVs and are crying foul play. And the PS3 is obviously lacking a scaler. It's not time consuming or expensive to add, Microsoft apparently pulled it off without a problem. Im not a fanboy of anything, I play everything, and this is not acceptable. Fine, its' $840 to make a PS3, just make it $847 and everyone's HDTV would work. You or someone you know apparently has the money to update your TV frequently so this situation doesn't apply to you. But why a company would release a product that alienates a sector of the HDTV market when they have been encouraging HDTV adoption is bordeline offensive, especially to those with Sony branded sets.

By therealnickdanger on 11/16/2006 10:59:34 AM , Rating: 5
I'm laughing at the absurdity of it, I honestly feel bad for Sony now. Hopefully this is just an isolated incident, but if it's not... wow. Just "wow".

By darith27 on 11/16/2006 11:39:29 AM , Rating: 2
I was seriously considering the purchase, but now this makesme sick.

Is this credible?
By OxBow on 11/16/06, Rating: 0
RE: Is this credible?
By vdig on 11/16/2006 12:40:25 PM , Rating: 1
Interesting question. I'm definitely keeping an ear open now, at any rate. Any confirmation would be the terrible scenario the previous posts make it look like at the moment - unless, of course, Sony can fix such an issue.

RE: Is this credible?
By ajira99 on 11/16/2006 1:30:39 PM , Rating: 4
I agree. I'm not overly fond of Sony for many reasons (despite having both the PS2 and PSP -- or maybe because of it), but even I find it hard to believe that they would screw up this badly . I could be wrong, so I'll just go and enjoy my 360.

RE: Is this credible?
By kattanna on 11/17/2006 3:36:45 PM , Rating: 2
Not happy...
By derubermensch1 on 11/16/2006 1:16:56 PM , Rating: 2
I own an older HDTV that cannot do 720p. My original plan for the PS3 was to get one when a blockbuster title comes out ie Final Fantasy XIII or MGS4, unless I came into some extra money. Now it will have to wait until I get a new TV regardless. Unfortuantely, it would be pointless to purchase one now when 1080p is in it's infancy (thus, higher prices) and none of the sets, as far as I know, support HDMI 1.3 This spec is important for when Sony decides to implement its 48-bit deep color capability of the PS3 which will not work over HDMI 1.2 or less. And I feel like I'd be wasting money if I got anything less than 1080p. I experienced a similar version of this issue with my Xbox 360 where I can only choose widescreen 1080i so some games look strange. Anyone know if using the VGA cable will enable me to choose 1080i 4:3?

RE: Not happy...
By walk2k on 11/16/2006 1:26:28 PM , Rating: 2
The 37" Westinghouse 1080p is $1399 and has HDMI..
If you want something larger, the 47" is only $1799.

I don't know how much cheaper you expect them to get....

RE: Not happy...
By derubermensch1 on 11/16/2006 1:58:38 PM , Rating: 2
I guess I should have clarified that when I do purchase a new HDTV it will be LED backlit DLP or LCOS as picture quality is amazing with that technology for the purposes I use my TV for. Right now I have a CRT HDTV so it looks really good, but the lack of 720p, etc is going to become a problem. These sets are around $2000 to $2500 for the smaller versions of regular DLP and LCOS, which isn't bad, but for around $2500 I expect to get a set that has 2nd gen (wider NTSC color gamut) LED backlighting (no wheel, quick start-up, longer bulb life, etc) and HDMI 1.3 Sets such as this for this price will be prevelant in a years time or less so I can't justify spending $1700 now on a set with less picture quality and features, etc...If I was to spend any sort of amount of money on a display device at this point it would be the NEC 20WMGX2 : ) Final Fantasy XIII shouldn't be out for another 3 centuries so I have time to get a new set I guess :)

By zam786 on 11/16/2006 11:38:45 AM , Rating: 2
Is it just me or is Microsoft and Nintendo laughing

RE: heheheh
By ajfink on 11/16/2006 11:58:05 AM , Rating: 2
Along with half the tech world.

RE: heheheh
By vdig on 11/16/2006 12:26:51 PM , Rating: 1
Of course, for Sony, their fans, and the third party developers that are backing Sony, they are groaning. Sony better hope this is a soft fix, otherwise this will detract quite a few gamers, moreso than the backwards compatability problem. I myself would hate to be limited to only 480P after paying a hefty premium for a HD console. If people are left hanging at 480P, many would likely consider the OTHER 480P console, Wii, if they have not already acquired a 360, and/or not already devoted to the PC (like a few here are). I'm not getting this console remotely near launch myself, just as I refuse to get a 360 at launch, since I expect quite a few launch problems such as this.

I hope this really does not turn into a two horse market running two different races. I need at least one other company to keep pushing MS forward. Of course, Nintendo is not even trying in the graphics department... what a shrewd company! They would have to have good practices to be in business since 1889.

Yes, Microsoft and Nintendo are chuckling, and sizing each other up for the Christmas holidays. (MS moreso)

Sony: $&^# MSN! (MicroSoftNintendo)

By Trisped on 11/16/2006 12:45:33 PM , Rating: 2
Sony said that they were better then the 360 because the PS3 could output in 1080p and the 360 couldn’t. They said that was a very important feature. Now we find out that they don’t support 1080i/p on their games, resulting in down scaling properties. To make matters worse, they didn’t tell anyone before they bought it. Wouldn’t that fall under false advertising?

Who knows, maybe this is a bug in the OS that will be fixed soon. But if it isn’t I have to say this is even more bad news about an already questionable consol.

By epsilonparadox on 11/16/2006 1:37:48 PM , Rating: 3
1080p on the PS3 isn't even a selling point anymore since x360 with a software update can also output that resolution.

By kelmerp on 11/16/2006 11:16:10 AM , Rating: 4
..and this problem will affect nearly all early adopters, since almost every TV set (AFAIR) based upon older CRT technologies were unable to support 720p, and of course, at the time 1080p didn't exist.

This a HUGE problem.

By phaxmohdem on 11/16/2006 11:22:23 AM , Rating: 2
Well, as one of those owners of an older HDTV only supporting 1080i looks like Sony won't be digging into my wallet any time soon.

I sure hope for all of our sakes that this is just a firmware update, or something that can be coded into games for compatibility. I don't know what the ratio of modern 720p capable sets to older 1080i only ones is, but I'd be willing to wager there are a lot of people out there with older sets like me... And I'm sure the hell not going to upgrade because Sony says to.

RE: Ouch
By zanavi on 11/16/2006 1:32:37 PM , Rating: 2
1080i CRT-based HDTV's (Mitsubishi & Sony) I've seen upconvert 720p to 1080i. To be fair, it's a combination of both the device and the display.

By AMD4ME2 on 11/16/2006 12:34:20 PM , Rating: 2
The article mentions a bundle at CompUSA? Finding one at CompUSA will probably be very difficult. Word is that CompUSA will only be getting 100 PS3s for the 229+ stores
across the US.

RE: CompUSA?
By masteraleph on 11/17/2006 8:11:10 AM , Rating: 2
Well, seeing as the CompUSA "bundle" requires the accompanying purchase of a Sony 40" or larger HDTV, there may not be that many people buying them (minimum price on the HDTV $1799.99). On the other hand, they'll probably be able to display 720p...

By Scabies on 11/16/2006 12:44:51 PM , Rating: 2
Guys, you're all missing the point!
*How the hell does this guy have a PS3 already?*

I kid, but when I get mine tomorrow, it better damn well do 1080i/1080p on my Sony 50A2000, or someone's getting a mailbomb.

RE: !
By wallijonn on 11/16/2006 3:06:37 PM , Rating: 2
Maybe he had a Chinese national wait on line in Japan, then had it shipped over.

By encryptkeeper on 11/16/2006 12:31:24 PM , Rating: 3
Just when you didn't think it could get any worse for Sony...

By TheMaster on 11/16/2006 6:07:37 PM , Rating: 2
Upscaling is currently found in many HDMI DVD players that convert 480p images to 720p or 1080i, producing slightly improved picture quality

What a load of BS!!

Sony stays mute
By OddTSi on 11/17/2006 4:54:13 PM , Rating: 2
No one seems to be getting a response from Sony on this issue. Is Sony hoping that if they stay quiet it'll just die down?

By hstewarth on 11/18/2006 10:25:44 AM , Rating: 2
I have 20G and older 720p HD Projector.

First of all, if you have a component cable, you can still play games and bluray at 720p, 1080i resolution Games even at 1080p How ever Resistence Recommend that you run at 720p even though I had it set to 1080i - but it still allow you.

I got HDMI->DVI to work by using right cable. I believe what people are confused with is that when you run HDMI setup and choose automatic that it picks 480p.

The simple solution to this issue is not to run the automatic settings and just choose manual. I was able to pick 720p or 1080i also.

No Sony Response?
By VooDooAddict on 11/20/2006 11:33:06 AM , Rating: 1
I'm enough of a tech geek that... if I saw a PS3 at retail (and buying one wouldn't risk the rent). Then I'd probably snag one and keep it.

However my Samsung 30" CRT HDTV only does 480i, 480p, and 1080i. It's still one of the best pictures for upscaled DVD movies that I've seen. I have NO intention of buying a new HDTV for a PS3. I know other people who bought the same or similar HD CRTs because of the low cost and excelent picture. I'd like to warn them about the PS3 incompatability if this is true. I'd like an official sony statement on it.

By SunAngel on 11/16/06, Rating: -1
By casket on 11/16/2006 12:56:27 PM , Rating: 2
Many old HDTV's support 1080i, and not 720p.

On the xbox 360... ALL GAMES are designed in 720p. X360 upscales this to 1080i. PS3 chooses the opposite path... downgrading to 480p. I'm not sure why the PS3 DOES NOT support 1080i.

By casket on 11/16/2006 12:58:56 PM , Rating: 2
"If the tv doesn't support 1080i to begin with, why should the PS3 be required to upscale to a unsupported resolution?"
-- Incorrect. The TV does not support 720p, The PS3 does. The TV supports 1080i, the PS3 does not.

By photoguy99 on 11/16/2006 1:04:44 PM , Rating: 2
Sun, the problem is most HDTV's used to (and not just first generation) support HiDef only at 1080i.

This means when the HDTV is sent anything but 1080i it's displayed in low def. Even many sets that claimed 720p compatibility would just downscale to 480p.

The reason it's Sony's problem is they should be able to do the scaling up to match the HDTV's resolution so quality will not be lost, like the XBox360 does already.

By SunAngel on 11/16/06, Rating: -1
By photoguy99 on 11/16/2006 5:34:38 PM , Rating: 2
You are correct that if game developers all supported 1080p this wouldn't be an issue for most people.

In fact, from a developers perspective it's just as easy for them to do 1080p as 720p.

So the big question is why are there any 720p games at all?

I can't speak for every developer but almost certainly it is because you get more perfomance (frames per seconds) at 720.

So for example a game may run great at 720p, but run choppy at 1080p.

By Masatomo on 11/16/2006 9:58:55 PM , Rating: 2
More pixels on the screen mean greater fill requirements, meaning more strain on the system, meaning slower performance.

Are you still confused?

Only affects small %
By walk2k on 11/16/06, Rating: -1
RE: Only affects small %
By photoguy99 on 11/16/2006 1:15:14 PM , Rating: 3
First, As I say in my other post this includes a pretty significant number of rear projection HDTV's that are still being used.

Second, no where does it state 720p has to be supported by TV's because it's a "standard HD format". In fact almost all HD capable devices don't support at least some of the posible formats! And as has been stated some TV's say they are "compatible with" 720p and just downscale it to 480p.

RE: Only affects small %
By VooDooAddict on 11/16/2006 7:42:06 PM , Rating: 1

Almost all CRT HDTVs that I've seen can't do 720p. I guess you are one of the lucky ones this wouldn't effect.

Call them "Old" HDTVs if you want. The fact is they are still HD sets and Sony's HD console is now forcing them into ED at the same rez that the Wii will have.

480i, 480p, 1080i were the minimums that many sets shipped with so they could call themselves HD instead of just ED.

The good thing for Sony ... there's plenty of people out there runnign HD sets with just composite or s-video input. HD is so confusing for the average consumer ... if it's flat and it works they are happy.

By Bobroton on 11/16/06, Rating: -1
This is not that hard to figure out
By Zorlac on 11/16/06, Rating: -1
By masteraleph on 11/16/2006 6:09:47 PM , Rating: 4
How about Solution #4?

Solution 4
_________________________________________________ ____________

Buy an XBox360 and get scaling to whatever TV resolution you want.

By raven3x7 on 11/16/06, Rating: -1
RE: Hmm
By Johnmcl7 on 11/16/2006 11:48:18 AM , Rating: 5
The article lists several titles affected by this, not just Resistance:

"So the situation right now is that anyone with an HDTV that's capable of only 480i, 480p, and 1080i will be unable to play games such as Resistance, NHL 2K7, Tiger Woods PGA Tour 07 and Need for Speed Carbon at anything higher than 480p."

RE: Hmm
By MooseMuffin on 11/16/2006 11:49:07 AM , Rating: 5
It occurs in more than one game. And its not necessarily about more detail by upscaling, its about less detail from downscaling. The ps3 takes a 720p image and downscales it to 480, which is a significant loss of quality.

RE: Hmm
By Trisped on 11/16/2006 12:23:14 PM , Rating: 2
and results in the "480p blur fest" noted in the article.

(blurry because when you shrink multiple pixels into 1 a blurry effect is created).

RE: Hmm
By therealnickdanger on 11/16/2006 11:53:09 AM , Rating: 3
Besides how much improvement can you get from upscaling anyway(this is not a rhetorical question)?

The quality of the picture will be determined by the scaler, which in the case of next-gen consoles, serves only as a bridging device for output frequencies. This isn't like a Teranex HQV process or anything. From what I understand, the PS3 is currently rendering games at 720p (just like the Xbox360). It's the job of the internal scaler to modify the values of the output signal to be properly interpreted by your HDTV. The function of the PS3's (or Xbox360) internal scaler should be independent of the game - like how you set your Xbox360 up for a certain resolution and it just works. The game is still being rendered properly as it should, but the signal output from the PS3 has a problem. The game will still look leaps better than a game rendered in 480, but the PS3 is only sending a quarter of the image data to your display and the display is interpolating the "missing" pixels.

RE: Hmm
By OrSin on 11/16/2006 12:02:48 PM , Rating: 2
You are mostly right but the the games will not look better the game made to run in 480P natively. Almost all scalars suck at down converison. That why alot people that dont have access to a HD single perfer the EDTV over HDTV. They dont need to down convert the video so regular TV looks so much better. Down scaling 720 to 480 is never a pretty site. I have seen it enoght times to agree with everyone thats is looks very bad.

RE: Hmm
By kkwst2 on 11/17/2006 12:01:56 AM , Rating: 3
Wow, lots of misinformation going around here. You're thinking about it backwards. The reason SD content looks better on EDTV's is because there is not UPconversion. Downconversion usually looks great (watching HDTV downconverted to EDTV looks beautiful) while upconversion looks like shit (watching SDTV on HDTV).

The issue is not that the downconversion will degrade the quality (other than the obvious decrease in resolution), but that the HDTV is then going to have to scale it back up to 1080, which will look like crap. It's having to add back (interpolate) what the PS3 just removed.

RE: Hmm
By Trisped on 11/16/2006 12:28:44 PM , Rating: 2
Are you sure all 360 games are rendered in 720P? I have the monitor cable (DSub) which gives me a large number of resolution options. It would make sense if they used the same system as PCs where it only renders the pixels you are going to use.

RE: Hmm
By therealnickdanger on 11/16/2006 12:53:23 PM , Rating: 2
Orsin: Down scaling 720 to 480 is never a pretty site. I have seen it enoght times to agree with everyone thats is looks very bad.

I'm sure there are crappy scalers out there, but I know first hand that 720p and 1080i content looks infinitely better than 480i/p on an EDTV (native 480p res). What looks crappy is 480i/p content blown up to 1080i/p. Scaling down a high-res image to fit a lower native res is easy and usually looks better than upscaling a low-res image to fit a higher native res. It's the upscaling that requires extensive PQ enhancements to look decent. Anyway...

Are you sure all 360 games are rendered in 720P? I have the monitor cable (DSub) which gives me a large number of resolution options.

Again, you're talking "rendered" versus "scaled". On a PC, changing the resolution of the game in the settings results in the game and graphics card agreeing to draw more pixels in the 3D realm. On the Xbox360 and PS3, the games are optimized to operate at one RENDERED resolution - in this case 1280x720 - and then the scaler will shrink or expand the post-processed image to be sent out over the cable to the display. Nothing changes the rendered resolution of the game, regardless of the display being used.

RE: Hmm
By Trisped on 11/16/2006 1:31:34 PM , Rating: 2
The problem with down scaling is what was taking up 5x3 pixels now takes 2x2, so things get stretched. Plus you are splitting pixels, so 2.5 pixels go into each horizontal pixel. Strange stuff that creates an end result of a lower quality picture then if it had just been multi sampled at the desired resolution.

So, how do you know that it only renders in 720p? Is it in the manual? I was just asking so I could confirm your statement.

RE: Hmm
By MooseMuffin on 11/16/2006 1:41:24 PM , Rating: 2
It depends on the game and it is up to the developer, but most xbox360 games are rendered internally at 720p.

RE: Hmm
By epsilonparadox on 11/16/2006 1:46:25 PM , Rating: 2
One of MS's criteria to developers was that all games had to atleast support 720p.

RE: Hmm
By therealnickdanger on 11/16/2006 2:21:59 PM , Rating: 2
Strange stuff that creates an end result of a lower quality picture then if it had just been multi sampled at the desired resolution.

Well, I don't know what to say. When I have the 360 connected to the EDTV plasma (852x480 native) and play a game or HD-DVD at 480p, 720p, 1080i, or 1080p, it looks incredible and almost as good as the HDTV plasma (1366x768) when viewing from 6+ feet away. When I go back to original Xbox 480p games on the Xbox1, there is an obvious deficiency in clarity on both the EDTV and HDTV. However, the few 720p Xbox1 games look exceptional on both TVs as well, so the effect is not limited to only the 360.

So I guess the question is this: does the PS3 render internally at 480i/p when any output mode other than 720p/1080p is selected? Is that where the problem lies? That's a pretty big oversight and seems to fully contradict Sony's lust for HD-domination. That doesn't seem to make sense, but reports of "muddiness" abound. Curious.
One of MS's criteria to developers was that all games had to atleast support 720p.

Thanks. That was one of Microsoft's edicts along with some level of Live compatibility, Achievements, and Dolby Digital. I forget what the other requirements are..

RE: Hmm
By drebo on 11/16/2006 4:36:35 PM , Rating: 1
When I have the 360 connected to the EDTV plasma (852x480 native) and play a game or HD-DVD at 480p, 720p, 1080i, or 1080p, it looks incredible and almost as good as the HDTV plasma (1366x768) when viewing from 6+ feet away. When I go back to original Xbox 480p games on the Xbox1, there is an obvious deficiency in clarity on both the EDTV and HDTV.

Anyone else see the flaw in this logic?

You're comparing an old console to a new console and an old game to a new game.

What you're essentially doing is comparing Donkey Kong Country for the SNES to the original Donkey Kong for the NES and saying "DKC LOOKS SO MUCH BETTER AT THE SAME RESOLUTION!"

Well, no shit! New graphics engine, newer graphics hardware, more disk space...what did you expect?

It's just like on the Playstation 2. When it first came out, developers didn't fully understand the Emotion engine and the Graphics synthesizer and all the DSPs in it. So they just didn't use them. As a result, there are some games for the PS2 with really shitty rendered graphics. But, then you have other games that make use of all of those features, such as the new Dirge of Cerberus, and the rendered graphics look almost as good as the prerendered movies.

It has nothing to do with the resolution or the TV and everything to do with the hardware capabilities and the software programming. If you were to take those XBox games and play them on a 360, you would notice that the 360 games looked better at every resolution anyway.

Now, the INABILITY to upconvert is entirely a hardware issue.

RE: Hmm
By therealnickdanger on 11/16/2006 5:35:06 PM , Rating: 3
Whoa, chill out spaz and retrace.

1. The people reporting the problem state that the PS3 won't upconvert 720p output to 1080i, but rather downgrades it to 480p and that it looks "muddy" and "like crap"...

2. Someone tried to explain it by making a point about how downsampling a large image to a small image looks worse than just producing a small original image. I made a comparison between the Xbox and Xbox360 simply for the sake of arguing that the larger the rendered image resolution, the better it looks, no matter the final output scale. The higher res the original image is, the more information (samples) there is to produce a low-res image, which brings me to...

3. I am suspicious that the image coming off the PS3 would look like crap if it is truly being rendered internally at 720p. Regardless, 720p squeezed down to 480p should always look better than 480p --> 480p, unless you simply have the crapiest TV ever made.

4. I am conjecturing based on the limited information we have thus far that the PS3 actually renders games internally based upon your selected output resolution...

5. I hope we hear an answer from Sony soon... one which isn't bullcrap, that is.

RE: Hmm
By kkwst2 on 11/17/2006 12:10:56 AM , Rating: 2
You logic is generally sound, but I think you're missing the main concern. It's true that going down to 480p is not inherently bad. If you're playing it on an EDTV, it probably doesn't matter too much if it's converted to 480p at the PS3 or the TV.

However, you have lost resolution. If you've converted 720p to 480p and are sending it to an HDTV with 1080i, you have to interpolate to fill in those extra pixels which aren't encoded in the 480p signal. This will cause the same pixelation that makes SD content look worse on an HDTV than an EDTV.

Seems like a significant issue if it's true.

RE: Hmm
By ViperROhb34 on 11/16/2006 8:45:08 PM , Rating: 2
ACtually his point makes sense..

I mean if you play Halo 2 on Xbox on HDTV and play Halo 2 on Xbox 360.. it looks better on 360 because 360 upscales resolution to above what Original Xbox does !!

RE: Hmm
By kkwst2 on 11/17/2006 12:17:16 AM , Rating: 2
Whether it scales really has nothing to do with stretching. Stretching is caused by changing format, like going from 4:3 to 16x9 or 16x10 (widescreen). You can have 480p content in either traditional 4:3 or widescreen format.

RE: Hmm
By obeseotron on 11/16/2006 11:41:16 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah all the games are 720p, I have the VGA cable also, it just scales the 720p signal to another resolution.

RE: Hmm
By Cisephys on 11/16/2006 11:58:04 AM , Rating: 2
Well, the "supposed Insomniac developer" claims it's not their fault, though that can certainly be taken with a grain of salt until some kind of official response comes out.

But to your upscaling question -- the source is 720p. 720p and 1080i are both high definition resolutions and, some situational differences aside, are generally considered equivalent in terms of quality. They'll look pretty much equal to most people most of the time. So upscaling from 720p to 1080i would keep the game looking extremely good. Downscaling to 480p, on the other hand, results in terrible quality loss.

I think you might be thinking of things like upscaling DVD players which output a 480i source to an HD resolution, which is a different situation.


RE: Hmm
By rtrski on 11/16/2006 12:09:31 PM , Rating: 2
I don't think the issue is that they want *improvement* as a result of upscaling 720p to 1080i. The two are effectively the same resolutions.

The issue is wanting to keep your HD rez if your older HDTV doesn't accept 720p, rather than dropping down to 480p (SD).

There is a vast difference between 720p (1280x720) or 1080i (1920x540, interlaced), both of which are roughly 1 megapixel and widescreen ratios, and 640 x 480 which is non-widescreen and only about .3 megapixels (or 720x480 which is DVD native rez, about 0.35 megapix).

RE: Hmm
By walk2k on 11/16/2006 12:56:36 PM , Rating: 1
"The two are effectively the same resolutions"

Very wrong.

1080i is 1920x1080 @30hz (60hz per field, interlaced). It has over 2 million pixels. 720p is 1280x720 @60hz (full frame) it has less than 1 million pixels.

HUGE difference. Yes the bit-rate is similar because 720p has twice the full-frame refresh rate. (though 1080i still has 60 unique units of motion per second). In practice though 1080i looks a hell of a lot sharper, especially on larger screens.

The problem here is going to be ONLY with VERY old CRT HDTV sets, like 5 years or more old. I have a CRT and it does 720p just fine.

RE: Hmm
By photoguy99 on 11/16/2006 1:09:47 PM , Rating: 2
The problem here is going to be ONLY with VERY old CRT HDTV sets, like 5 years or more old. I have a CRT and it does 720p just fine.

I don't think it's as small a problem as you imply.

First you can tell just from the posts here a lot of people have such CRTs (including me) so it's not that limited.

Secondly it means you cannot use any PC monitor that supports 1080p (like I have).

So basically nothing in my house will properly play these PS3 games, whether it's older or brand new.

RE: Hmm
By MooseMuffin on 11/16/2006 1:44:55 PM , Rating: 2
I don't see anything that says you can't use a 1080p monitor.

RE: Hmm
By photoguy99 on 11/16/2006 1:54:32 PM , Rating: 2
If it cannot upscale to 1080i it's doubtful it can upscale to 1080p.

This means all 720p games for PS3, cannot be used on a 1080p monitor.

This would be a problem most all 1080p PC monitors. Most 1080p TVs would include their own scaler.

RE: Hmm
By walk2k on 11/16/06, Rating: -1
RE: Hmm
By therealnickdanger on 11/16/2006 2:26:46 PM , Rating: 2
There are many 1920x1200 monitors available on the market. Shoot, my laptop does that natively. 1080i/p content results in a 60-pixel gap on the top and bottom...

RE: Hmm
By Gatt on 11/16/2006 2:30:27 PM , Rating: 2
There are myriad monitors at 1900x1200, and several beyond that like Dell's new 30" panel.

Nor is it fud. 1080i and 1080p are the same resoultion, with different approaches to how it's drawn on the screen. If it isn't able to hit the 1080i resolution, it's unlikely it can hit the 1080p resolution since they're the exact same number.

With all due respect, you should read up a little before calling "Fud".

RE: Hmm
By JonnyBlaze on 11/16/2006 4:17:20 PM , Rating: 2
the problem lies when peoples monitors cant display 720p. ANY screen capable of 1080p can take a 720p signal and upscale it.
older monitors just dont accept 720p inputs so people with those are screwed.

RE: Hmm
By walk2k on 11/16/06, Rating: 0
RE: Hmm
By photoguy99 on 11/16/2006 5:30:20 PM , Rating: 2
It's not FUD - if this article is true there is a major problem with 1080p PC monitors.

What you're saying is someone should try to run 720p output directly into a 1080p PC monitor? Have you ever tried that?

It looks very bad and I doubt anyone is going to want to do it.

As I mentioned, if you have a new 1080p TV than this is probably not an issue.

RE: Hmm
By kkwst2 on 11/17/2006 12:28:29 AM , Rating: 2
What you're saying makes no sense. It would not be any more of an issue for a 1080p monitor than a 1080p TV. Monitors are much more flexible than HDTV's as to what input resolutions they will accept. Either will have to upconvert.

If you've played a game at 1280x1024 on a 1600x1200 monitor then you've done it. It's not ideal, but it is not "very bad" in my estimation. It's certainly better than playing 640x480 on a 1600x1200 monitor, which would be the analogy (not exactly, but you get the idea).

As many others have said, the real issue is with older HDVT's that only support 1080i and simply do not recognize a 720p signal.

However, it's not just an issue with CRT's as someone suggested. There are older projections and plamsas that would not accept 720p.

RE: Hmm
By rtrski on 11/17/2006 10:20:19 AM , Rating: 2 correct me, then contradict yourself.

2 million pixels 30 times a second vs. 1 million pixels 60 times a second...same bitrate, therefore essentially same video content.

You can claim 1080i is 'sharper' for a single frame "resolution", but I can claim 720p shows motion capture truer because its non-interlaced. For a data over time video reslution, you get the same overall information flow. And if you use your monitor for a computer screen, everyone I've ever polled or seen speaking about it e.g. on states that text on 720p looks crisper than 1080i because of the progressive scan. If it makes a difference just reading, it makes a difference to the *PERCEIVED* optical clarity for pictures in motion, regardless of the pixel count per frame.

Its a fool's argument though, so I'll pass on any further continuation of it... Either way, not being able to output to both formats and forcing a monitor to receive as 480p, then 'scale' back up to 1080i, is just plain icky. And if you get outside the CRT-assumption, there are a LOT of 720p or 1080i "only" sets out there that can't convert on their own, or if they do accept both its by downsampling the less-preferred ones to 480p. Yet another wonderful 'format war' legacy. Serves Sony right in a way, since they're still trying to serve up another war w/ BluRay.

RE: Hmm
By Methusela on 11/16/2006 1:36:35 PM , Rating: 1
It's not the software. It's the PS3 itself that can't upscale.

For reference:

RE: Hmm
By peternelson on 11/17/2006 7:35:35 PM , Rating: 2
Don't see why it should scale.

Ideally, the software writer should make their game play all resolutions the customer may desire.

Regardless, let's say the ps3 will play in and outputs 720p (or maybe 1080i/p)

Unless your screen is 1920x1200 native pixels where you have a perfect 1:1 correspondence for 1080, then there MUST be scaling.

If the PS3 does not know the native res of your display device, how can it know? And if it does scaling, then your tv will just scale it again (twice total) which would be awful.

Low res scaling 480 to 720 and 720 to 1080 are in 3:2 ratio ie 2 pixels make 3, then again 2 pixels make 3. That's not pixel doubling or averaging, but blurry.

Anyway it's your screen that should be doing the upscaling.
The screen should accept 720p and 1080i (and ideally 1080p).

If its native res is less it will be downscaled and look inferior. If higher it should take the input and scale to native best it can.

LCD screen is by nature progressive type, regardless of input. CRT is often interlaced.

If you want your screen to do it look for (in Europe) the "HD ready" sticker label which mandates: HDMI input with HDCP capability plus capable of at least 720 lines.

If over digital HDMI or DVI connection, your device (ps3) and screen (tft) should be able to negotiate what resolutions they have and/or accept, and send picture accordingly.

Is this problem here being reported about ANALOGUE inputs to screens not handling 720p?

Anyway if your HDTV is rubbish that's not the ps3 fault. Go buy a decent external scaling box as used for home cinema.

On the other hand, I'd encourage game developers to optimise their games for as many resolutions as practical.

RE: Hmm
By peternelson on 11/17/2006 7:39:33 PM , Rating: 2
My point is ps3 should not have to scale at all just output.

eg ps3 output 720 lines of gaming.

If it upscales 720>1080 that is a 3:2 blurryness.

Your tft with unlikely the 1080 or 1200 native res would then up or down scale that 1080 to its native making more blurring.

Best to output 720 and the screen scales only once so less blur.

That is different to if the PS3 can RENDER natively in 1080, in which case it should be made to, but that is the case if the game developer wrote the graphics coding to run the game in 1080 in my opinion unless performance reasons this option should be offered in menu.

There is no such thing as an HDTV that can't do 720p
By Wolfpup on 11/16/06, Rating: -1
By dwalton on 11/16/2006 7:53:31 PM , Rating: 3
Where does it say that you have to all HDTV formats (excluding 1080p) to be considered a HDTV?

By Zorlac on 11/16/06, Rating: -1
RE: Oh...
By AzureKevin on 11/17/2006 12:24:51 AM , Rating: 2
There's a bit of a difference between the PS3's predicament and the comparison you made of the GeForce 3.

A TV is like a monitor; you expect a game to play at the maximum possible resolution of your computer monitor if your graphics card can handle it. Even if your monitor is 10 years old, you still expect a game to run at its highest resolution.

Similarly, a game should run at the highest resolution your TV can go since the hardware (PS3!) can easily handle it. There's no excuse to be forced to play a game at 480i when your just bought a 600 dollar beast to run it at high definition. It'd be like playing a game on the PC at 640 x 480 even though you just bought a GeForce 8800 GTX. That's just not right.

I'm sure Sony will find a way to fix this with a firmware update or something similar, but until then, there will unfortunately be haters and bashers.

"Nowadays, security guys break the Mac every single day. Every single day, they come out with a total exploit, your machine can be taken over totally. I dare anybody to do that once a month on the Windows machine." -- Bill Gates

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