Basics of HD video
Can anyone suggest some good on-line references for learning about the myriad standards and specs for HD Video? I came across this one in a magazine just now, and it covers a lot:
But it doesn't say much about the various connectors and what signals are compatible with them, which is probably the way I need to approach it.
March 23rd, 2007 3:45pm
It's not that complicated (for those who have been working with computers for a few decades). What do you want to know and why do you want to know it?
March 23rd, 2007 3:51pm
It still hasn't all settled out. I just use a widescreen DVI monitor connected to a Mini and let it sort out the details.
March 23rd, 2007 4:06pm
It's all about DRM. If you don't like all the crap imposed by DRM, you will have a hard time with HD video.
March 23rd, 2007 4:21pm
Which of the many LCD or Plasma TVs that Costco has should I buy so that I can hook up my current DVD player, VCR, and, possibly, computer to?
March 23rd, 2007 4:22pm
Heh, I got a 46" LCD Daytek 4660 from Costco... it's great, love it, would recommend it. Plug it into a computer and it tells you the panel is actually an LG.
All HD TV's have component inputs and most (if not all) have HDMI inputs. It's also fairly common for TV's to have VGA inputs (my does). I have my DVD player, my Wii, and my computer hooked up to my TV.
Pretty much any TV you buy will *work*. So it becomes a question of degrees: how big, how much resolution, brand name, build quality, etc. And of course: Plasma vs. LCD.
March 23rd, 2007 4:30pm
It depends a bit on how many sources you want to connect to the TV, and whether you want the TV to do picture only, or whether you want it to do picture and sound.
You can feed an HD picture over component video with separate audio cables, which is analog, works fine, but has bulky cabling. Or you can use a DVI cable, but that is picture only and needs a separate audio connection. Or you can use HDMI which combines picture and audio into one slim connector. But HDMI has DRM built into it, which may impose some restrictions on recording from it.
The theoretical future is that HDMI will be the standard. An AV amp will have a bunch of HDMI inputs from the various components and an HDMI output for the TV.
If you don't have an AV amp in your system, you need to check that the TV has enough AV inputs of the right kind for the things you want to connect to it.
March 23rd, 2007 4:35pm
Plasma seems to be losing out to LCD.
46" is really big.
1080p seems to be the new thing. Sony is branding it as "Full HD." Your DVD player isn't ready for this. Your cable TV isn't read for this. But if you want to be ahead of the curve.
March 23rd, 2007 4:35pm
1080p > 1080i > 720p > anything else
HDMI > Component > S-Video > anything else
March 23rd, 2007 4:39pm
"Plasma seems to be losing out to LCD."
I didn't want the burn-in issues given that I was hooking up both my computer and my Wii up to the TV.
"46" is really big."
The ultimate truth about HDTV is that as soon as you get one you want a bigger one.
I didn't bother with 1080p -- way more expensive and very little benefit right now. DVD's are 480p (and look great, BTW) and it just gets harder and harder to tell the difference.
March 23rd, 2007 5:00pm
> it just gets harder and harder to tell the difference.
Your eyes going bad too?
son of parnas
March 23rd, 2007 5:12pm
The older I get, the lower the resolution of TV I need.
March 23rd, 2007 5:15pm
Pick the size of the TV based on how far you will be sitting from it. For 8' away, a 42" is good.
If you're buying a LCD, plasma, or DLP, pay attention to the native resolution. Some are only 720p, and do upscaling/downscaling when presented with signals that are different resolutions. A friend has a DVD player that has the Faroudja scaler, and it does a better job than the built-in ones.
March 23rd, 2007 8:21pm
"1080i > 720p"
Just as one note about that, 1080i is 30 frames of 1920x1080 images per second. 720p is 60 frames of 1280x720 images per second.
So 1080i is 62,208,000 pixels per second, while 720p is a barely reduced 55,296,000 pixels per second. 720p is the preferred format of fast action, such as sports.
March 24th, 2007 5:42pm
p > i
March 25th, 2007 8:35am
>> 720p is the preferred format of fast action, such as sports. <<
The Superbowl last year was broadcast in 720p. This year it was in 1080i. The 1080i version had noticeable artifacts in the crowd scenes.
BTW, I don't know if anyone is still making tube HDTVs, but if you can find one, buy it. They have a much better picture than the LCD or Plasma displays, even if they weigh 200 lbs. There's a reason why Best Buy don't place them next to the more expensive flat panels -- better picture yet cost less.
I'm looking forward to checking out the SED displays when they come out -- they're electron-beam & phosphor, just like tubes, but are also like TFT displays in that each pixel has it's own electron emitter.
March 25th, 2007 10:54am