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Comment: it is very smart
Good: Scan FTA only option,
Bad: Slow scan, Low quality mpeg decoding, solarisation, audio bugs
Comment: Don't be fooled by the HD MPEG4 and DVB-S2 capabilites of the device ! The quality of the picutre of the HUMAX HDCI2000 is much lower than what should be expected.
Broadcast professionals know: "HDTV means not only millions of pixels but sharpness, color depth and artifact- free pictures." and any good photographer will tell you, color depth is a key feature of a good picture. Humax 2000 is sharp but has reduced color depth and render the tv signal with the ugliest mpeg artefacts it is possible to do.
And it is a shame when thinking that today BBCHD, PRO7 or other HD channels are finally delivering content with deeper color depth and higher definition (allowed by the use of a greater bandwidth and more advanced compression algorithmes).
You may think that, by buying these new devices, you going to get the best of today technology. Well be carefull ! After the first minutes of wonder in front of the millions moving pixels, you will notice a strange thing: the picture out of the Humax HDCI-2000 is solarised (yes, like on those first bad plasma screens that were released in the market a few years ago!).
Despite having a nice gradient in shades, you got 2-3 color areas with noisy shaky hedges (for instance in skies, face skin, or blurry backgrounds which are very difficult to render because of the high number of color they require to appear realisticly). The overall picture is flat and tones slightly wrong because they are approximated to the nearest color the receiver can handle.
When watching medium-low bitrate TV programs (almost all SD signals) things go even worse: macroblocks of the mpeg highly compressed picture appear much more visible than from any other DVB receiver I tested so far. It's a pity I can't attach a picture to show you the whole disaster.
And of course, once you've noticed the problem, you will see only that. I've tested the Humax on 2 Sony Full HD Bravia LCD screens, a Sony professional reference monitor using the RGB, S-video, Component and HDMI output of the Humax and a end consumer Philips Matchline CRT TV. Same solarisation everywhere.
I made a history diagram of the picture: millions of beautiful colors at the source are heavily reduced to a few hundreds at the output of the Humax.
Other quite annoying problems I noticed are:
(1) if audio left or right is selected (usefull for dual-mono languages broadcasts), after a few minutes the receiver switch back to stereo.
(2) Audio and video are freezing from time to time, mosty when using the common interface (viaccess).
To conclude: I would recommend to wait for competitors such as PACE before making the move to High[er] Quality & High[er] Definition experience at home.
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