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Presentation Switchers / Scalers


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I'm looking to purchase a presentation switcher for our AV events and am looking for some help on quality / brand name comparisons.


We have a Kramer VP-719xl which has done us well for the past year, but want something that does more HD stuff and more functionality.


I've used Folsom ImagePro HDs before which are very capable for doing scaling/ HDSDI - DVI conversion and basic switching between a few sources. I like the fade through logo feature and the loop through on the inputs etc.


I would need something that works up to 1080p and copes with a variety of inputs from composite up through YUV and DVI-D/DVI-I - HDSDI not essential but handy with DVI-I output if possible.


The image pro HD is quite good, but ideally I could do with more inputs, the Folsom Presentation proII only seems to have HD15 connectors which are a bit of a pain as I'd need adaptor leads for all the inputs (I've never even seen HD-15 to composite leads or do you just use the green connector on a YUV lead? - and what about Y/C?).


I've also been looking at the TVOne range of items - in particular the C2-7000 series which look very capable, but does anyone have experience of them and can comment on their quality compared to other makes?


Are there any other products that people think I should look at? - Budget for this is around £5k + VAT but I don't want to cut corners on this purchase if possible.


Thanks for the help!



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Extron Electronics do some good ones, and have a selection of capabilities (inputs/outputs/layers etc) to suit most applications.


I've used their analog MGP462 units and been very impressed by the ease of use and small size (1U), so it's definately well worth taking a look at the digital HD versions.

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I second the Extron suggestion. My work has quite a few different pieces of extron kit (a 408 seamless switcher, 4x8 matrix switcher, various scalers and a 16x16 matrix switcher on the way) - they have all been beautiful bits of kit, with very few problems, and beautiful image quality on the upscaled stuff.
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Thanks for the suggestions. I've been looking quite a lot at the TVOne C2-7100. Does anyone have any experience / thoughts on the TVOne stuff? I've used a few of their 1Task bits successfully.
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The extron Iss 408 is good, but beware, their UK support has been abysmal, virtually non-existent after their split with previous re-sellers.


You might wish to look at the Kramer VP727 which is a dual bus switcher/scaler with PiP

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Thanks. I have indeed been looking at the VP727, but the only drawback I see with it is that it doesn't have digital in. When I'm working with some clients, they are quite insistent on having an all digital process from source @1080p through to output device (usually a projector).


The summary of where I'm at at the moment is as follows:



It doesn't seem (unless I've missed something) that the Extron range includes any switchers with a DVI input.



Most suitable model appears to be the VP-727 but has no digital inputs.


Analog way:

Ocoto Vue FX looks the most suitable from the Octo range. I have never heard of them before, but look reasonable units. Plus side is the number of universal inputs and has 1 DVI in. Appears to have a fixed res preview output which is fine. There are some slightly confusing statements on the spec sheet about seamless switching between sources. I mostly need to switch video (up to 1080p on DVI or component) rather than computer inputs. Anyone have any experience of these units?



The C2-7100 looks good, but I have 2 possible problems with this: 1) There is a FAQ one their website which implies that the DVI-D input /output only supports up to 1280 x 1024 res @ 60Hz (108MHz) rather than the max DVI single link spec of 165MHz (good for up to about 1600 x 1200 I think @60Hz). Not sure if that means it won't support 1080p.

Secondly, it only has 3 high end inputs - is there any way to easily expand this?



Generally seem to have the most 'tweakable' units, but the image proHDs have only 3 inputs and appear not to have preview capability, the presentation ProII has 1 DVI but appears not to be scalable (not sure what this would mean from my switching requirements; I'm not intending to do a scaleable window PIP with digital). ScreenProII has 2 DVI but I think is out of my price range.


Am I missing something with the digital stuff? Do all of these units convert digital to analog and back again or is there something that would pass the digital through with minimal processing delay (processing delay is important to minimise in my case).


Thanks for the help so far everyone, keep the suggestions coming!




Edited for poor spelling!

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Personally I'd get a short list together and get the manufacturers to demo the relevant units to you. When your looking to spend £5k with them, you expect a bit of willing on their part.


My understanding with the Screen Pro II's is that they pass the Background A and B through at input resolution ('Unscaled Background'), and the content has to be scaled up to meet that. So if your putting 1080i through, it will scale everything else to meet that. I have the SPII user Manual if that would be of use. It's quite a beast to get round, but once your there very flexible.


The TVOne rep said that they're products will take pretty much any resolution, but as you say the literature only suggest DVI to 1280x1024, whereas the analogue options will take 2048x2048. As for HDTV resolutions, the book states "All thru 1080p". There units will stack together, so taking two C2-7100's and connecting via the control cable I believe will give effectively double the inputs. They also have edge blending options and other tricks. Might be worth getting in touch with TV one, I believe Alan Greenfield covers the Southern UK.


The Extron ISS506 does have an optional DVI O/P board, but not an input. The IN1508 does have a DVI in, but only Analog out. I believe your quite right in saying that there are no products with a DVI in and Out, which frankly seems silly.


You question comes at the time when I'm looking to add another unit to hire stock. Personally I think I'll be going down the Barco, Extron, Kramer or TV One route. I know of several companies that have experienced issues with the Analog Way than have led them to consider alternative manufacturers. The old chestnut of what can you hire In/Out locally also comes into play.It depends on where you sit in terms of neediing additional kit if you ever do.

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AnalogWay is looking like the best combination atm. I've just never heard of them before so not sure how they stack up compared to others in terms of picture quality / delay. Also, the spec sheet talks about seamless switching between video/computer and computer/computer but I need to know if it's ok with video/video which is what I'm mostly dealing with. I can't get hold of a manual (their website only has a brouchure and spec sheet). I usually like to have a manual as it helps my understanding of the capabilities/limitations of a unit rather than just the spec sheets which often don't tell you that feature x is actually not available in situaiton y.


I'm interested to know more about the diventix possibly as well, but I can't find a UK seller with one to get a price for. suggestions?


Ideally I'd like to try something out before purchase with the actual sources that I use (which are mostly readily available, but demanding!) so I'd like to find a distributor/dealer that will allow me to try something before I buy!

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What are your main reasons for not using AnalogWay switchers?




It's not that I won't use them- I will be several scalers short next week, and will use the Analog Way units as they are available. However they are lower down on my purchasing list compared to the others I listed. Mainly due to:

*Cross Rental Options Locally (one or two companies I work with moving from Analog Way to others)

*Several Stories of New units failing mid show

*Never been impressed by build quality


Obviously in all cases I would fully recommend that anyone purchasing a new piece of equipment make the decision based on their circumstances, requirements and reasoning. If they feel that Analog Way would be best for them the that should be what they buy.


Everyone has an opinion- they are like Assholes- everyone has one, but not always the best thing to be sharing around in public. That is my opinion of Analog way, and I recognise and accept that there are lots of people out there who would whole heartedly recommend Analog Way.

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I work for True Colours distribution here in the Uk and we are the sole distributor of the Analogway products into the UK and europe.


In responce to the few faults you have heard of I can conifrm that this is a very rare occorance when it comes to Analogway. Like you have said there are many production companys in the Uk and throughout Europe that use Analogway switchers and so many of them would not use any other switcher.


If you would like to have any product manuals or data sheets please email me and I will send you some stuff over.



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