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Old 7th April 2006, 07:04 PM   #1
AndrewT is offline AndrewT  Scotland
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Question HDTV in the UK

Hi all,
HDTV is coming to the UK.
Can an HD ready TV only display HD signals by using an HDMI connector?

The salesperson also said that there are DVD recorders that can record and display HD signals.

How do I recognise an HD ready recorder?

Can an older TV that accepts RGB, Svideo, commponent video as well as composite video be used to display high definition signals?
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Old 7th April 2006, 07:34 PM   #2
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http://hometheater.about.com/od/dvdr...drecgfaq14.htm
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Old 7th April 2006, 07:59 PM   #3
infinia is offline infinia  United States
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Default Re: HDTV in the UK

Quote:
Originally posted by AndrewT
Hi all,
HDTV is coming to the UK.
Can an HD ready TV only display HD signals by using an HDMI connector?
"HD ready" generally means no digital tuner on board. But can be used as a HD monitor given the matching resolution and scan via digital inputs like DVI or HDMI.
Better to have a built in tuner for free over the air broadcasts. Generally cable and sat providers are using their own standards. So will have to get a tuner from their suppliers anyway.

T
Quote:
[i]he salesperson also said that there are DVD recorders that can record and display HD signals.

How do I recognise an HD ready recorder?[/B]
check resolutions offered for recording and playback.

Quote:
[i]Can an older TV that accepts RGB, Svideo, commponent video as well as composite video be used to display high definition signals? [/B]
No not correctly
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Old 8th April 2006, 01:56 AM   #4
D!g!TaL is offline D!g!TaL  Scotland
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Default HD Ready!

Hi Andrew,

Quote:
HDTV is coming to the UK.
Can an HD ready TV only display HD signals by using an HDMI connector?
It is my understanding that all proposed HD Displays will use the HDMI connector for displaying HD signals.

An 'older' TV cannot, by definition (no pun intended), display an HD signal without prior down conversion to a normal definition signal. Obviously the down converter could supply the normal definition picture by any of the usual analogue connection systems - composite, S video, RGB, YUV component, etc.

Quote:
The salesperson also said that there are DVD recorders that can record and display HD signals.
The most obvious question is ... what are you going to record? To my knowledge the only source of HD material available to the domestic viewer is via various test transmissions on exotic satellite channels, and the proposed Sky HD service. Sky's own Sky+ HD box will obviously record and playback HD material (as well as SD, standard definition material).

The BBC plans to transmit an HD service on Freeview, I gather. Domestic HD recorders, either DVD or hard disc based, will, presumeably, interface to future HD Freeview boxes.

The other main source of HD material for the domestic viewer will clearly be some form of HD DVD system. There is obviously a hold up on the roll out of a domestic HD capable disc system due to the lack of ratification for the competing proposed systems - HD Dvd and BlueRay. (Everybody remembers the VHS vs Betamax thing, right?)

It's interesting to note that the vast majority of 'HD Ready' screens available to buy right now at your local Comet. Dixons, etc. are far from HD capable. Just because a screen is 'capable' of displaying a down converted HD signal doesn't mean you are going to be overwhelmed by the true HD experience.

Most 'HD Ready' screens (primarily Plasma & LCD panels) are simply re-packaged Wide XGA panels operating at a resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels. The current HD specification for future transmissions is based on a pixel resolution of 1920x1080, in various flavours of progressive (1080p) and interlaced (1080i).

The difference in quality when viewing a 1920 x 1080 picture on a native pixel screen (as opposed to a Wide XGA) is, simply, staggering.

Manufacturers are slowly responding to this demand - check out these:

The Toshiba 47WLT66 lcd screen:
http://www.home-entertainment.toshib...6?opendocument

The Toshiba 42WLT66 lcd screen:
http://www.home-entertainment.toshib...6?opendocument

No commercial endorsement implied - there are just very few yet available.

My feeling is that there are going to be quite a number of 'HD Ready' purchasers that are going to be very disappointed/angry in the near future.

Regards,
Ian
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Old 8th April 2006, 02:59 AM   #5
infinia is offline infinia  United States
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Default Re: HD Ready!

Very nice post Ian!

Quote:
Originally posted by D!g!TaL

Most 'HD Ready' screens (primarily Plasma & LCD panels) are simply re-packaged Wide XGA panels operating at a resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels. The current HD specification for future transmissions is based on a pixel resolution of 1920x1080, in various flavours of progressive (1080p) and interlaced (1080i).

My feeling is that there are going to be quite a number of 'HD Ready' purchasers that are going to be very disappointed/angry in the near future.
Right on the button Ian. Best advice for most people is to hold out for a another year or so for a true 1080p HD display screen of 1920x1080. This is about double the pixel density of most of the screens they pushing now.
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Old 8th April 2006, 09:58 AM   #6
AndrewT is offline AndrewT  Scotland
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Hi,
thanks.
Sounds like some of the info from sales is incorrect.

If the DVD recorder system cannot cope with HD signals, then can the SKY HD box which has a hard disc recording facility built in cope with storing the full resolution?

or is SKY HD storing at a lower resolution more suited to the kid on "HD ready" TVs that do not display at 1080lines?

From what you are saying I may well be asking these questions again in 12/24months. Why, because sales are not going to be honest when a buyer asks what he/she is getting from them.
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Old 8th April 2006, 10:46 AM   #7
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It's still all in it's infancy, but the current state of affairs is:

Connection to the screen is via either HDMI or component connections, the new Sky+HD has both. Suitable sets have an 'HD Ready' logo which ensures compatibility, 'HD Resolution' doesn't guarantee it.

Sky are currently broadcasting HD programming ready for the launch of Sky HD in May - boxes aren't available yet, but will be a new Sky+HD, with 160Gb recording space.

The BBC will be doing tests via satellite (Astra 28.2), probably during the world cup, and the Sky+HD boxes will be able to receive these as well. FTA HD boxes should be able to receive the BBC tests as well.

The Sky+HD boxes will record the direct digital data stream, as current Sky+'s do, so the quality will be exactly the same as off-air.

Freeview! - the BBC are doing tests this summer in London only, for a VERY! small number of viewers (a few hundred or so). As for an actual service?, at the present time it's a huge problem as the bandwidth isn't available terrestrially. Personally I see no real reasoning behind terrestrial digital at all?, far better coverage and much more bandwidth via satellite.

As for recorders?, the whole point of the HDMI interface is to prevent you recording the signals - the copyright holders don't like the idea of people making HD copies of their programming.
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Old 8th April 2006, 10:58 AM   #8
AndrewT is offline AndrewT  Scotland
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Hi Nigel,
Quote:
I see no real reasoning behind terrestrial digital
My analogue transmitter is due to go off air next year (Selkirk).
Digital is my only alternative unless I wish to keep that Austrailian in Rolls Royces and private jets.
HD reception from SKY looks like costing 700 to 800 per annum in reception fees plus the cost of sky box (300) plus the HD tv.

I can control the HD tv and budget for it.
Sky's greed is beyond my control.

Terrestial digital is my only cheap option.
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Old 8th April 2006, 01:24 PM   #9
Kram is offline Kram  United Kingdom
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Hello Andrew,

Just get yourself a Freeview STB for now if you dont allready have one, freeview is actually quite good.

I dont have Sky TV and never will, its a rip off.

If you want HD then you will have to wait for Freeview to go HD ( you will be waiting a long time) or get yourself a satellite TV box (note not Sky) which will get u a lot of channels for free.

For more information have a look at this forum http://www.satellites.co.uk/

IF you are quick with a purchase of a HD sat box you will be able to watch the world cup in HD.

Kram
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Old 8th April 2006, 03:05 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by AndrewT

Terrestial digital is my only cheap option.
That appears to be a common misconception, Freesat gives almost the same channels as Freeview and doesn't require a subscription at all. It provides quite a lot of channels that Freeview doesn't, and Freeview provides a smaller number that Freesat doesn't.

You DO require a Sky Digibox and a Freesat card (20 one of fee) to get Ch4 and Ch5 as these are currently encrypted, or an expired Sky card works as a freesat card as well. Apart from those any FTA digital satellite box will do - but a Sky Digibox is the easiest choice.

You can also order it directly from Sky, where it costs 150, including the box, card, and installation - which is certainly losing BSkyB money (which you might enjoy?). Another option is to subscribe to Sky, so you get the free box, card and installation, with a minimum monthly subscription - this is less than 150, and after a year you cancel, and keep all the equipment (this will lose BSkyB even more money!).
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