HD-SDI vs others
Question for the stagers out there, we have been using Cat5/VGA baluns to connect switchers to projectors with good results. Of course, there are limitations to this type of connection. The biggest challenge in my chain always seems to be the comfort monitor, darn things will never be happy with the resolution I send over VGA, for instance, 1050 x 1400 or 1280 x 800. Like most, I set the switcher to output native resolution of the projector and hope the comfort monitor will accept. Most of the time I end up putting a scaler on the comfort monitor line. When I send an HD signal to the monitors over HDMI, all is well. So that got me thinking, what if I used some Kramer baluns (FC-113 & FC-331) to replace the Cat5/VGA baluns. Here is what I'm thinking: Pulse switcher (DVI out) converted to HDMI via a cable, into FC-113 to create HD-SDI, could run into an SDI DA to feed projectors and comfort with an FC-331 feeding each device. HDCP shouldn't come into play, and you'd think everyone would play well together. Here are the challenges as I see them, projectors that aren't native HD will have to scale, in turn will not use all the available pixels which means projection distances will increase (I'll have to overshoot to get the HD image to fill), any time there is scaling there is the fear at some point I might introduce some lip flap, especially if I throw a video switcher in front of the graphics switcher. I suppose I could route that the other way around and have the video switcher feed the FC-113, and the Pulse feed the video switcher.
Just curious if anyone is using this type of solution, and what the drawbacks would/ could be?
We have been through the same exercise and have settled on a solution using Black Magic products that works very reliably and very well. We use the ATEM ME1 and sometimes the ME2 as a switcher which provides HD-SDI out. We run coax to the projectors and use a BlackMagic converter for HD-SDI to analog component. The nice thing is this converter has a loop through which is reclocked meaning we can go another 350ft to the next projector or confidence monitor. At the confidence monitor we connect either an sdi to component or an sdi to hdmi converter. Most of the time we just convert it to analog, though. We run our switcher at 1080i and interface with both nonHD projectors and HD confidence monitors.
On the input side we connect Macs and PCs (outputs set to 1920x1080) out their HDMI or DVI ports. We can send PPT directly and movies via PlaybackPro. The switcher introduces 1 frame of latency if we do not genlock the sources. We run the projectors at 1920x1080.
The video quality increased dramatically even with SD projectors.
Hope this helps.
I never really thought about HD over component, that is a great idea.