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Hd Ready Or Full Hd?


skybluestu

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Hi,

Is there a huge difference in picture quality between a 1366 x 768 and a 1920 x 1080 LCD TV? Trying to decide between a Samsung series 4 with a free home theatre worth 15,990 thrown in or a series 5 but without the home theatre, both are 40inch and cost 32,990baht.

Thanks in advance

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While the previous advice is correct, there's a couple of things to consider. First, are you going to only be watching dvd and that gawd awful UBC? Than follow the advice offered. Even with upscaling (which will take the information that is given to the tv and attempt to add more information to increase quality) you source (UBC anyways) is still going to look like week old cat puke.

If on the other hand you plan on buying Blu-Ray or have a good upscaling dvd AND tv or decide to hook your 'puter up I'd recommend getting the Full HD. I got the Full HD and don't regret it. Wife purchased a Sony upscaling dvd player/mini theatre and it does a pretty decent job as a stop gap to real HD....whenever the powers to be pull their collective brain pans out of their defecating orifices.

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HD ready means the screen can descale and deinterlace images and movies from the 1080p resolutions and viewed on screen to 1080i or 720p. So the screen is capable of 1280x720progressive or 1920x1080interlaced

Full HD means the screen is capable of 1920x1080progressive resolution.

Only blu-ray is capable of 1920x1080p. Most other HD programming like in the U.S. over the air, cable is only 1080i or 720p.

Currently there is no programming for HD in Bkk. UBC, local television and cable aren't HD. Even dvds aren't hd. dvds are only 720 by 576p (progressive). Even with upscaling to 720 progessive or 1080 interlaced I can't see much of a difference unless the dvd is a real dvd9 good action movie. But I don't upscale because it puts the image though very tough and unnecessary processes. If upscaling from 576p to 1080i creates lots of image artifacts and filtering. Meaning the image will be upscaled from 576p from the dvd to 1080p, then the screen has to deinterlace from 1080p to 1080i. Scaling from 576p to 720p isn't much of a difference even on 50" screens. So unless the screen is 1080p native don't even bother upscaling.

I chose my 1024x768 Samsung plasma because I have yet to find a need for HD programming. Also if I went 1920x1080 I would lose lots of screen use because of the ratio of UBC programming is 4:3. If I set the tv to 16:9 the people on the screen looks short and fat so I set it to 4:3. That's why I chose a 42" plasma over a 40" lcd. 40" screens are wider than tall. So if viewed at 1.33 ratio a 40" screen loses out in screen area to my old 32" but a 42" is tha same as a 34" CRT.

I would go for hd ready because Thailand will take another 5 years, 2-3 minimum for Full hd to be available or blu-ray to be mainstream. By that time flat screens will be even cheaper and better.

Edited by mdechgan
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just bought me a Samsung 40" Full HD . 33,000 Baht at Numchai (down from 50l!)

Tried a bunch of TVs in the past weeks. Advise is take your laptop with you and connect it vie VGA cable to the TV. THEN you see the difference. You would not notice while watching TV, watching DVDs and watching movies from your computer via S-video or video-out. But you see a BIG difference if you watch vie VGA or (port on your computer permitted) via HDMI out.

You will notice that some TV sets are not Full HD although the label says so. You will see the difference between 1:15k and 1: 30k contrast ratio and you will see the difference between a refresh rate of 50, 100 and 200 Hz. The latter is for big pockets only...but comes with a 1:50k contrast ratio....unbelievable brilliance!

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HD ready means the screen can descale and deinterlace images and movies from the 1080p resolutions and viewed on screen to 1080i or 720p. So the screen is capable of 1280x720progressive or 1920x1080interlaced

Full HD means the screen is capable of 1920x1080progressive resolution.

Nope.. HD ready means it will take a HD signal and downscale it to the panel resolution.. None of these flat panels display a 1080i signal in an interlaced output.. Panels are by thier very nature progressive.. A set that takes 1080i and downscales it to even a 480p panel is still HD ready.

Only blu-ray is capable of 1920x1080p. Most other HD programming like in the U.S. over the air, cable is only 1080i or 720p.

Or the huge amount of 1080p online content..

Currently there is no programming for HD in Bkk. UBC, local television and cable aren't HD. Even dvds aren't hd. dvds are only 720 by 576p (progressive). Even with upscaling to 720 progessive or 1080 interlaced I can't see much of a difference unless the dvd is a real dvd9 good action movie. But I don't upscale because it puts the image though very tough and unnecessary processes. If upscaling from 576p to 1080i creates lots of image artifacts and filtering. Meaning the image will be upscaled from 576p from the dvd to 1080p, then the screen has to deinterlace from 1080p to 1080i. Scaling from 576p to 720p isn't much of a difference even on 50" screens. So unless the screen is 1080p native don't even bother upscaling.

If your not talking about CRT systems this is totally wrong.. The source has to be 'scaled' to fill the panel.. Thats for all Plasma / LCD etc screens and projectors.

Upscaling can introduce artifacting, but theres pretty good chips for this now and unless your a videophile your very unlikey to notice any 'tough and unnecessary processes'

I chose my 1024x768 Samsung plasma because I have yet to find a need for HD programming. Also if I went 1920x1080 I would lose lots of screen use because of the ratio of UBC programming is 4:3. If I set the tv to 16:9 the people on the screen looks short and fat so I set it to 4:3. That's why I chose a 42" plasma over a 40" lcd. 40" screens are wider than tall. So if viewed at 1.33 ratio a 40" screen loses out in screen area to my old 32" but a 42" is tha same as a 34" CRT.

Again totally wrong.. a 16:9 screen is 16:9 for a 40 inch or a 42 inch.. a 4:3 ratio screen is the same ratio for each different size. What ratio screen do you have ?? I have never seen a 4:3 plasma set.

If your using a 1024x768 16:9 screen then those are non square pixels often employed on those early plasma sets.. To when you pillarbox 4:3 content in the screen its not using the ful panel res and is even lower res. Watching any Hidef on that is basically useless. No wonder you cant see much difference.

I would go for hd ready because Thailand will take another 5 years, 2-3 minimum for Full hd to be available or blu-ray to be mainstream. By that time flat screens will be even cheaper and better.

I watched 'body of lies' in 720p last night.. Superb quality (all those extreme high detail aerial surveillance shots). On my el cheapo 1000 baht a month net connection I get 1 or 2 Hidef movies per night.. I have about 30 unwatched films sitting here waiting for viewing and just delete them when watched.

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Nope.. HD ready means it will take a HD signal and downscale it to the panel resolution.. None of these flat panels display a 1080i signal in an interlaced output.. Panels are by thier very nature progressive.. A set that takes 1080i and downscales it to even a 480p panel is still HD ready.

Unless of course it doesn't do 720p....

Or the huge amount of 1080p online content..

Or if you have your 'puter hooked up and it upscales it (I feel like a record with a scratch in it-otherwise I agree with you)

If your not talking about CRT systems this is totally wrong.. The source has to be 'scaled' to fill the panel.. Thats for all Plasma / LCD etc screens and projectors.

Upscaling can introduce artifacting, but theres pretty good chips for this now and unless your a videophile your very unlikey to notice any 'tough and unnecessary processes'

And furthermore, techincally 1080i is only 540 lines of resolution per frame....so if you're going to compare a PAL (not everyone uses it, Americans are stuck with 720x480) at 576 to a 1080i where both are upscaled to 720p of course the PAL will win out. Don't know what the OP is using for his setup, other than the TV, but it sounds like he's unhappy with the processing engine. Perhaps he should trade up if it's that much of a nuisance for him...(otherwise I agree with you)

Again totally wrong.. a 16:9 screen is 16:9 for a 40 inch or a 42 inch.. a 4:3 ratio screen is the same ratio for each different size. What ratio screen do you have ?? I have never seen a 4:3 plasma set.

If your using a 1024x768 16:9 screen then those are non square pixels often employed on those early plasma sets.. To when you pillarbox 4:3 content in the screen its not using the ful panel res and is even lower res. Watching any Hidef on that is basically useless. No wonder you cant see much difference.

I'm assuming his TV is old as hel_l. All of the newer TVs I've seen have been 1366x768, but now that I think about it, they were all LCD. None the less, compared to an LCD display (disregarding the non-square pixels) he's down some 20% on resolution compared to an newer LCD. It was rather foolish to pillarbox his display; but he does have a point-the display will make everything look ~33% 'fatter'-but it wouldn't be as bad on the 1024x768 plasma due to their pixels being taller than wide.

I watched 'body of lies' in 720p last night.. Superb quality (all those extreme high detail aerial surveillance shots). On my el cheapo 1000 baht a month net connection I get 1 or 2 Hidef movies per night.. I have about 30 unwatched films sitting here waiting for viewing and just delete them when watched.

I'm sure MPAA is watching you now :o

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Nope.. HD ready means it will take a HD signal and downscale it to the panel resolution.. None of these flat panels display a 1080i signal in an interlaced output.. Panels are by thier very nature progressive.. A set that takes 1080i and downscales it to even a 480p panel is still HD ready.

Unless of course it doesn't do 720p....

Depends on the marketer.. I have seen HD ready used interchangeably in Europe with what should technically be 'HD compatible' eg takes a HD signal and downscaled it to even SD.. I dont agree with it but have seen it many times.

Upscaling can introduce artifacting, but theres pretty good chips for this now and unless your a videophile your very unlikey to notice any 'tough and unnecessary processes'

And furthermore, techincally 1080i is only 540 lines of resolution per frame....so if you're going to compare a PAL (not everyone uses it, Americans are stuck with 720x480) at 576 to a 1080i where both are upscaled to 720p of course the PAL will win out. Don't know what the OP is using for his setup, other than the TV, but it sounds like he's unhappy with the processing engine. Perhaps he should trade up if it's that much of a nuisance for him...(otherwise I agree with you)

hmmm.. not going to agree.. You could be discussing either the source or the display so for each..

Source... You seem to be forgetting that PAL is also interlaced so 576i !! However when dealing with film sourced MPEG data streams (lets say a PAL DVD here and not a DVB broadcast as theres way more info in that, much is converted NTSC and multiple conversions in the data chain make it much more complex to describe how the MPEG is decoded) with the MPEG data stream you have the interlaced 'i-frame' and a flag giving deinterlace instructions to repeat frames (remember film sourced is 24 frames per second not 60 for NTSC or 50 for PAL so the frame is repeated in a 3:2 pulldown pattern for NTSC or given a PAL speedup for the 50 hz cycles of PAL content). So as the frames are exact repeats the player is actually reconstructing the progressive datastream fully within the digital domain. This is how we can have a progressive output from a medium that is actually an interlaced storage medium. This exact playback conversion also is possible on any 1080i film sourced data stream too. The data format for the interlaced content contains full instructions to rebuild a progressive frame if the display is capable of receiving and displaying full 1080p.

Display.. 1080i content that comes from video source (sports) or is captured without the MPEG flag data and needs to be processed. This is a more complex again setup. 1920x1080i content can be displayed as 1920x540p (many of the early gen CRT's couldnt scan fast enough for 1080p so people would run PC's at 720p and 540p for 720 and 1080 content from PC sources). That said 1920x540 is FAR FAR more than PAL content (720x576i).. As PAL is also an interlaced format if comparing like for like then PAL in the same progressive conversion for video sourced PAL would be 720x288p. So saying 1920x540 (1MP per frame) v 720x288 (200k ish !) is 5x the data... Even if you compare 1920x540p display v 720x576p (such as a well processed DVD) you have 1MP v 400k per frame !!

Basically theres no way you can fudge the numbers to get more data, either at source or at display, for 1080i content to be less than PAL content.

Again totally wrong.. a 16:9 screen is 16:9 for a 40 inch or a 42 inch.. a 4:3 ratio screen is the same ratio for each different size. What ratio screen do you have ?? I have never seen a 4:3 plasma set.

If your using a 1024x768 16:9 screen then those are non square pixels often employed on those early plasma sets.. To when you pillarbox 4:3 content in the screen its not using the ful panel res and is even lower res. Watching any Hidef on that is basically useless. No wonder you cant see much difference.

I'm assuming his TV is old as hel_l. All of the newer TVs I've seen have been 1366x768, but now that I think about it, they were all LCD. None the less, compared to an LCD display (disregarding the non-square pixels) he's down some 20% on resolution compared to an newer LCD. It was rather foolish to pillarbox his display; but he does have a point-the display will make everything look ~33% 'fatter'-but it wouldn't be as bad on the 1024x768 plasma due to their pixels being taller than wide.

Fatter is fatter.. At this point the non square pixels arrangment is irrelevant.. Its the output and conversion from 4:3 to 16:9.. At that point it doesnt matter the shape of pixels, the res of the set, etc etc.. 16:9 to 4:3 is a 33% stretch, and nothing changes the look of the distortion / conversion. You can pillarbox, or stretch, but by doing the latter you see the stretch.

Of course clever stretches can be done.. Or you can crop 5% or so and stretch the remaining.. With dScaler I had a S--T-RET-C--H filter created that keeps the central 50% less stretched at the expense of the screen edge as the focus of the content is usually centered. This combined with a 5% crop (dScaler was written to be highly customisable) made for a superb widescreen conversion of academy ratio content. Better than any TV set one I have seen.

Yes I was a video geek !!

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I'm assuming his TV is old as hel_l. All of the newer TVs I've seen have been 1366x768, but now that I think about it, they were all LCD. None the less, compared to an LCD display (disregarding the non-square pixels) he's down some 20% on resolution compared to an newer LCD. It was rather foolish to pillarbox his display; but he does have a point-the display will make everything look ~33% 'fatter'-but it wouldn't be as bad on the 1024x768 plasma due to their pixels being taller than wide.

I personally have a laugh at those who need to use each available pixel of their TV just because it was paid for. If it is in 3:2 ratin, for Chrsit sake, watch it in 3:2 and do not stretch it to the edge. It looks terrible in case you haven't noticed. On a 40" screen it still gives you 33" and that is better than the box you had before :o

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Other than connecting a computer to the screen what else does one have in BKK?

Or the huge amount of 1080p online content..

Other than connecting a computer to the screen what else does one have in BKK?

Again totally wrong.. a 16:9 screen is 16:9 for a 40 inch or a 42 inch.. a 4:3 ratio screen is the same ratio for each different size. What ratio screen do you have ?? I have never seen a 4:3 plasma set.

If your using a 1024x768 16:9 screen then those are non square pixels often employed on those early plasma sets.. To when you pillarbox 4:3 content in the screen its not using the ful panel res and is even lower res. Watching any Hidef on that is basically useless. No wonder you cant see much difference.

Just because my screen is able to have high resolution and 16:9 doesn't mean I want to use the entire screen. Have any of you notice how ugly a 4:3 source looks like in 16:9? If a 4:3 content of a 32" screen is 25.6 x 19.2" total area is = 491.52"

For a 16:9 32" screen the display is 28 x 15.7" = 439.6"

Remember widescreens are wider than normal that's why they are called widescreens!

If my content is 4:3 I watch them in 4:3 with letterboxes to the left and right. Watching them in 16:9 causes the screen to be really stretched, fat, unnatural and ugly.

A 34" screen in 4:3 has a display of 27.2" x 20.4"

A 42" plasma has an area of 36.7 x 20.4" (16:9)

or

27.2" x 20.4" (4:3)

So even though I have a lower res screen at 1024 x 768 I rarely use all of it and actually use more of the screen than a full hd model screen because if watching 4:3 content I lose less display space than a true widescreen. The edges are letterboxed.

Like raro says I don't use the entire screen just because I have to fill it and have to watch an unnaturally sized picture.

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While the previous advice is correct, there's a couple of things to consider. First, are you going to only be watching dvd and that gawd awful UBC? Than follow the advice offered. Even with upscaling (which will take the information that is given to the tv and attempt to add more information to increase quality) you source (UBC anyways) is still going to look like week old cat puke.

If on the other hand you plan on buying Blu-Ray or have a good upscaling dvd AND tv or decide to hook your 'puter up I'd recommend getting the Full HD. I got the Full HD and don't regret it. Wife purchased a Sony upscaling dvd player/mini theatre and it does a pretty decent job as a stop gap to real HD....whenever the powers to be pull their collective brain pans out of their defecating orifices.

By far the best description I have ever read given to UBC :o

But I still think you're being kind...

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I'm assuming his TV is old as hel_l. All of the newer TVs I've seen have been 1366x768, but now that I think about it, they were all LCD. None the less, compared to an LCD display (disregarding the non-square pixels) he's down some 20% on resolution compared to an newer LCD. It was rather foolish to pillarbox his display; but he does have a point-the display will make everything look ~33% 'fatter'-but it wouldn't be as bad on the 1024x768 plasma due to their pixels being taller than wide.

I personally have a laugh at those who need to use each available pixel of their TV just because it was paid for. If it is in 3:2 ratin, for Chrsit sake, watch it in 3:2 and do not stretch it to the edge. It looks terrible in case you haven't noticed. On a 40" screen it still gives you 33" and that is better than the box you had before :o

Depends what your watching.. Just TV and stuff on my LCD screen I stretch all my UBC and dont worry about the artifacting..

For movie watching on the 120 inch width screen (about 144 diag) I watch all in OAR.. 2.35:1 has letterbox bars and 4:3 has pillarboxed bars.

God knows what 3:2 ratio would look like tho :D

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Depends what your watching.. Just TV and stuff on my LCD screen I stretch all my UBC and dont worry about the artifacting..

For movie watching on the 120 inch width screen (about 144 diag) I watch all in OAR.. 2.35:1 has letterbox bars and 4:3 has pillarboxed bars.

God knows what 3:2 ratio would look like tho :D

ouch....4:3...I'm cineast, not accountant... :o

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Other than connecting a computer to the screen what else does one have in BKK?

Or the huge amount of 1080p online content..

Other than connecting a computer to the screen what else does one have in BKK?

You mean apart from HD DVD, Blu Ray, Playstation, xbox360, AND the 1000's of online Hidef files viewable with 10's of different media boxes like the popcorn media hour etc.. So outside of all those 1000's of hours of Hidef then yeah, theres not much hidef !!

Theres some great forums out there now where all the BBC documentary stuff is being shared so I dont need to miss any of those Attenbourough Natural history, all that smart programming that simply doesnt come onto UBC. Plus lots of sports I follow like MMA have the Hidef torrents posted straight after the fights, DL overnight and I have the hidef the day after the broadcast.

Again totally wrong.. a 16:9 screen is 16:9 for a 40 inch or a 42 inch.. a 4:3 ratio screen is the same ratio for each different size. What ratio screen do you have ?? I have never seen a 4:3 plasma set.

If your using a 1024x768 16:9 screen then those are non square pixels often employed on those early plasma sets.. To when you pillarbox 4:3 content in the screen its not using the ful panel res and is even lower res. Watching any Hidef on that is basically useless. No wonder you cant see much difference.

Just because my screen is able to have high resolution and 16:9 doesn't mean I want to use the entire screen. Have any of you notice how ugly a 4:3 source looks like in 16:9? If a 4:3 content of a 32" screen is 25.6 x 19.2" total area is = 491.52"

For a 16:9 32" screen the display is 28 x 15.7" = 439.6"

Remember widescreens are wider than normal that's why they are called widescreens!

If my content is 4:3 I watch them in 4:3 with letterboxes to the left and right. Watching them in 16:9 causes the screen to be really stretched, fat, unnatural and ugly.

A 34" screen in 4:3 has a display of 27.2" x 20.4"

A 42" plasma has an area of 36.7 x 20.4" (16:9)

or

27.2" x 20.4" (4:3)

So even though I have a lower res screen at 1024 x 768 I rarely use all of it and actually use more of the screen than a full hd model screen because if watching 4:3 content I lose less display space than a true widescreen. The edges are letterboxed.

Firstly the sides are never letterboxed !! Letterboxing is bars top and bottom. So out of your available 1024x768 screen you only use the central 3/4 so only 768x768 (with non square pixels).. Even lower definition.

The part I bolded I fail to understand at all !! If you used the central 3/4 panel on a full HD set that would be 1440x1080 rez !! If your talking screen real estate (area) then it doesnt matter what its resolution is, its screen size that matters. a 40 inch TV will have less than a 50 and in turn less than a 60 etc.. Simple and obvious and has no relation to res.

Your also aware of course of the high risk of burn in on the plasma, so pillarboxed content is damaging to the screen if used that way day in day out ??

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Has anyone tried the copied blu ray discs sold in klongthom yet?

Are they really blu ray material or just dvd content burned onto a blu ray disc?

Down our way they have started slapping HD DVD and Blu Ray logos on DVD9 discs, hard to tell in a DVD shop with a 14 inch TV connected via composite cable. To be fair the sellers dont make any claims they are highdef but I know some tourists think they are when buying.

I was told theres some places in BKK selling HiDef, also one shop selling h264 downloads packaged too. Not seen it personally just heard about it.

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You mean apart from HD DVD, Blu Ray, Playstation, xbox360, AND the 1000's of online Hidef files viewable with 10's of different media boxes like the popcorn media hour etc.. So outside of all those 1000's of hours of Hidef then yeah, theres not much hidef !!

Theres some great forums out there now where all the BBC documentary stuff is being shared so I dont need to miss any of those Attenbourough Natural history, all that smart programming that simply doesnt come onto UBC. Plus lots of sports I follow like MMA have the Hidef torrents posted straight after the fights, DL overnight and I have the hidef the day after the broadcast.

HD DVD is I think going to be phased out.

I don't plan to connect my game boxes to my big screen. I use a separate screen for games.

I also don't plan on connecting my computer to my big screen because I have a monitor for that. Even if I download and burn them to a dvd it won't be HD. I can try to download them into an avi format and see if my player reads it.

Again totally wrong.. a 16:9 screen is 16:9 for a 40 inch or a 42 inch.. a 4:3 ratio screen is the same ratio for each different size. What ratio screen do you have ?? I have never seen a 4:3 plasma set.

You don't understand. The television is 16:9 widescreen. But there's a button on the television remote and UBC box where you can set the television to either 4:3 or set the UBC box to 16:9.

Firstly the sides are never letterboxed !! Letterboxing is bars top and bottom. So out of your available 1024x768 screen you only use the central 3/4 so only 768x768 (with non square pixels).. Even lower definition.

So you've never seen a television with the letterboxes on the edges instead of top and bottom? There's a button on your remote, change the display to 4:3. Usually there are 4 modes: 16:9, 4:3, zoom and wide zoom. Or you can change your UBC box to have a 16:9 output. The UBC box will letterbox the sides automatically.

The part I bolded I fail to understand at all !! If you used the central 3/4 panel on a full HD set that would be 1440x1080 rez !! If your talking screen real estate (area) then it doesnt matter what its resolution is, its screen size that matters. a 40 inch TV will have less than a 50 and in turn less than a 60 etc.. Simple and obvious and has no relation to res.

a 32" CRT and 32" widescreen has totally different display areas.

CRT 32" screen is measured 25.6 wide x 19.2" tall, total area is = 491.52"

Lcd, plasma 32" screen the display is 28 wide x 15.7" tall = 439.6"

Go to a local powerbuy and measure the screens with a tape measure.

Your also aware of course of the high risk of burn in on the plasma, so pillarboxed content is damaging to the screen if used that way day in day out ??

Plasmas work the opposit of lcd screens. Plasmas use less energy in black colors and and more for whites. In plasma televisions to make a black pixel the individulal electrodes are turned off meaning not used. To make a white pixel all three individual pixels or electrodes are turned on. For lcd screens to make a black color the panels has to use energy to block the backlight since lcd screens always have their backlights on. LCDs use more energy for blacks and use less for whites.

Edited by mdechgan
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You mean apart from HD DVD, Blu Ray, Playstation, xbox360, AND the 1000's of online Hidef files viewable with 10's of different media boxes like the popcorn media hour etc.. So outside of all those 1000's of hours of Hidef then yeah, theres not much hidef !!

Theres some great forums out there now where all the BBC documentary stuff is being shared so I dont need to miss any of those Attenbourough Natural history, all that smart programming that simply doesnt come onto UBC. Plus lots of sports I follow like MMA have the Hidef torrents posted straight after the fights, DL overnight and I have the hidef the day after the broadcast.

HD DVD is I think going to be phased out.

I don't plan to connect my game boxes to my big screen. I use a separate screen for games.

I also don't plan on connecting my computer to my big screen because I have a monitor for that. Even if I download and burn them to a dvd it won't be HD. I can try to download them into an avi format and see if my player reads it.

Your missing the point (possibly on purpose ??) in that ALL of these devices play HiDef files (as do BluRay and HD-DVD disc players).. Some of them even play BluRay and HD-DVD discs themselves, but why be stuck in the old world of physical media ?? 1.5 terrabyte (1500 gigs) drives are out and cheap now.. Every BluRay disc is put online the day its officially out or even sooner.. Why would I want a disc based player? If I even buy a DVD the first thing I do is put it into a computer, rip it to my home network, where its then watchable on any of the players and TV's in the house, with thumbnails and cover art etc in the menu system. The disc then goes in a drawer for archival never to be touched again.

There also 10's of media players out now in the market.. Small, cheap, instant on devices to playback all this HiDef. Tho of course if you have only ever looked at HiDef on a low def XGA set then no wonder you wouldnt see the appeal, hardly any difference over a good DVD.

Again totally wrong.. a 16:9 screen is 16:9 for a 40 inch or a 42 inch.. a 4:3 ratio screen is the same ratio for each different size. What ratio screen do you have ?? I have never seen a 4:3 plasma set.

You don't understand. The television is 16:9 widescreen. But there's a button on the television remote and UBC box where you can set the television to either 4:3 or set the UBC box to 16:9.

Believe me, I understand aspect ratio, I have authored enough content and dealt with the anamorphic encoding of same to know it. Having written the custom aspect ratio filters in dScaler (I host the open source project) all manner of different crop and stretch modes were coded.

But your claiming that a low def set, in 4:3 shows more (I think 'lose less' was your term, lose res, or screen area I cant guess as it loses neither) than on a HiDef set.. A totally incorrect statement. Either your talking screen area or screen res, both show less in 4:3 or on a lower def display

Firstly the sides are never letterboxed !! Letterboxing is bars top and bottom. So out of your available 1024x768 screen you only use the central 3/4 so only 768x768 (with non square pixels).. Even lower definition.

So you've never seen a television with the letterboxes on the edges instead of top and bottom? There's a button on your remote, change the display to 4:3. Usually there are 4 modes: 16:9, 4:3, zoom and wide zoom. Or you can change your UBC box to have a 16:9 output. The UBC box will letterbox the sides automatically.

Sigh.. Your really have to be doing this on purpose ??? You cant really be this lost ?? No, I have never seen 'letterboxing' at the edges instead of the top and bottom !! Why ?? Because thats not letterboxing !!!

Letterboxing is (go look at a letterbox) content with black bars above and below the image.. So 2.35:1 scope content on a 16:9 or 4:3 screen with have letterboxing. Pillarboxing (go look at 2 pillars) is content with black bars at the sides. This would be 4:3 content on a 16:9 screen or 16:9 or 1:1.85 content on a scope 1:2.35 screen.

The part I bolded I fail to understand at all !! If you used the central 3/4 panel on a full HD set that would be 1440x1080 rez !! If your talking screen real estate (area) then it doesnt matter what its resolution is, its screen size that matters. a 40 inch TV will have less than a 50 and in turn less than a 60 etc.. Simple and obvious and has no relation to res.

a 32" CRT and 32" widescreen has totally different display areas.

CRT 32" screen is measured 25.6 wide x 19.2" tall, total area is = 491.52"

Lcd, plasma 32" screen the display is 28 wide x 15.7" tall = 439.6"

Go to a local powerbuy and measure the screens with a tape measure.

Yes they do.. and theres no way you can watch 4:3 content on a 16:9 screen and have it "actually use more of the screen than a full hd model screen because if watching 4:3 content I lose less display space than a true widescreen" when you talk about screen aspect ratio, then if its Hidef, SD, full HD, etc make no difference to the screen area being used to display the 4:3 panel in the 16:9 screen. Think about it for a second !!!

Your set is 16:9.. So it has the same aspect ratio as any other 16:9 set !!! So it uses the same 'display space' as any other 16:9 screen for 4:3 content. No matter if its Full HD, HD ready, or SD !! its the same !! If you meant resolution, then of course the higher pixel density of the higher def sets show MORE resolution in the same area.

Your also aware of course of the high risk of burn in on the plasma, so pillarboxed content is damaging to the screen if used that way day in day out ??

Plasmas work the opposit of lcd screens. Plasmas use less energy in black colors and and more for whites. In plasma televisions to make a black pixel the individulal electrodes are turned off meaning not used. To make a white pixel all three individual pixels or electrodes are turned on. For lcd screens to make a black color the panels has to use energy to block the backlight since lcd screens always have their backlights on. LCDs use more energy for blacks and use less for whites.

Well actually plasmas work by exciting the gas in them by use of positively charged ions but yes, in very broad strokes a plasma has a system where it 'lights' up pixels and LCD has a system where it 'blocks' the light being emitted from pixels.. But...

What has that got to do with burn in ?? As I said plasmas (especially the early gen low rez ones) are prone to burn in.. So pillarboxing your UBC, and watching a lot of it that way, is likely to damage the panel in fairly short order.. There was even an 'orbiting' feature built into dScaler and some hardware scalers to prevent burn in for CRT projectors for exactly this reason.

Edited by LivinLOS
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I'm not going to argue with you because I don't think you understand about screen display area between 4:3 CRT and 16:9 widescreens.

Just check the website www.screenmath.com.

If the content is 4:3, and you watch it in 16:9, the picture is an unnatural stretch period. And if you watch 4:3 content on a 16:9 screen in a 4:3 setting... If lose less space is not the correct saying, then lets say there will be more unused space for pillarboxing.

So if the content is 4:3 and not HD the screen will not display its full resolution because even if your screen is super hd the content is not. Set your computer monitor to its full resolution setting, watch a dvd or vcd in 320 x 200 or even 640 x 480. As you see the movie will only play in a small portion on your screen like in a small box or window. There is space unused. Now if you blow up the window or maximize the screen, the entire display is used but the picture will be very blown up and still won't look sharp no matter how high your resolution is. The higher the resolution the smaller the window played will be. Do you understand my meaning that if even if your resolution is super, one won't be using the entire screen. If one blows up and uses the entire resolution for the full display (which is what a home television screen does), the content is still non-hd and it just means the picture content is blown up to fill the screen.

Conclusion, resolution and screen size mean dots per inch (DPI). Pixel density is what matters most. A 50" screen with 720 x 576 resolution will actually look better and sharper than a 100" 1920 x 1080 screen if playing blown up 720 x 576 content.

Pixel denisty of a 42" PAL screen is about 22ppi or pixels per inch.

density of a 42" HD is about 52ppi (more than twice as much)

However an image size of a 720 x 576 picture on a 1920 x 1080 42" screen is only about 13.8" x 11". So the picture has to be blown up and stretched to fill the screen.

On a 22ppi screen the size would be 32" x 26"

Just because you have and are capable of the higher resolution doesn't mean one will be using it.

Now I know what you mean that if there was a way to upscale the resolution of non-hd content into a higher resolution. But currently it justs means the content is blown up to a higher reolution and is still pixelated. There's not much one can do if the original content is not high enough resolution. Also if the content is 4:3 it will still be 4:3 or pillarboxed in 16:9. Unless one zooms and cuts the top and bottom to fill the sides.

If the content is HD then there is no question or arguement about the benefits of a high performance screen. But like most of us that usually watch UBC cable, thai, television and rent non blu-ray movies most of the time there is very little benefit.

Plasma screens are prone to burn in only if a color is on the screen or statc at the same area for long periods of time. The exception is if the area is black (not true black just pixel off black) or gray. Because black or gray means the pixels aren't on or is at its lowest power.

Here's the tip from the plasma manual:

1. Briefly engage the 4:3 mode to confirm that the side bars are set to mid-gray to minimize the chance of burn-in.

2. Limit the use of static images (computer, video games, etc.) to less than 10% of viewing time.

3. Adjust the CONTRAST setting at or below 50% on your new plasma TV

Burn in is not much of an issue, it usually can be cured with graying or snowing. Also the contrast on plasmas are really out of this world. Setting the contrast more than 50% is just too bright and too much contrast.

I'm not going to argue about online content, yes there are true online hd and games but I don't connect them to my large screen because I prefer to let my wife and her friends watch the big screen while I do my work on my computer and gaming machine. I use other smaller screens for than. It is not practical for us if the computer and big screen is connected because that means one of us has to sacrifice. So instead we decide if one wants to use the big screen or the computer, its not fair for either if us to use both at the same time.

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I'm not going to argue with you because I don't think you understand about screen display area between 4:3 CRT and 16:9 widescreens.

Just check the website www.screenmath.com.

Man.. I wrote some of the first software that does all those stretches !! I hold the domain names for the worlds best open source scaler.. I used to be a microsoft MVP (media video pro), moderator of the nets largest media PC forums, and was a HT installer building those glory palaces with the red velvet curtains even back when 3gun CRTs were the only way.. Believe me when I say, I am aware of what your saying.. But your not getting the basics of what I am trying to point out.

If the content is 4:3, and you watch it in 16:9, the picture is an unnatural stretch period. And if you watch 4:3 content on a 16:9 screen in a 4:3 setting... If lose less space is not the correct saying, then lets say there will be more unused space for pillarboxing.

So if the content is 4:3 and not HD the screen will not display its full resolution because even if your screen is super hd the content is not. Set your computer monitor to its full resolution setting, watch a dvd or vcd in 320 x 200 or even 640 x 480. As you see the movie will only play in a small portion on your screen like in a small box or window. There is space unused. Now if you blow up the window or maximize the screen, the entire display is used but the picture will be very blown up and still won't look sharp no matter how high your resolution is.

Yes.. all PAINFULLY obvious..

With high quality scaling it will look fine.. Perhaps the old plasma you have also has a crappy scaler ??

Consider this.. The source your watching (PAL 576i) is already being scaled to your screen.. Theres no plasma on the market that does 1:1 pixel mapping (you know what that is right ??) on a 576 source. So as it HAS TO BE SCALED ANYWAY whats the issue. Scale it to 4:3 scale it to 16:9 makes no odds, your not looking at it with 1:1 pixel mapping ANYWAY.

The higher the resolution the smaller the window played will be. Do you understand my meaning that if even if your resolution is super, one won't be using the entire screen. If one blows up and uses the entire resolution for the full display (which is what a home television screen does), the content is still non-hd and it just means the picture content is blown up to fill the screen.

Conclusion, resolution and screen size mean dots per inch (DPI). Pixel density is what matters most. A 50" screen with 720 x 576 resolution will actually look better and sharper than a 100" 1920 x 1080 screen if playing blown up 720 x 576 content.

Not if its using a well done scaler.. Go have a read of some high end video documents on 'interpolation' the process used in high quality upscaling. By interpolating the content, edges becomes smoothed out, jaggies are eliminated etc. Its the same theory used in high end audio thats called 'oversampling'.

Also your imaginary 720x576 screen !! You are aware that a DVD is anamorphically encoded thats 720x576 of DATA is outputed as 1024x576 16:9 or as 640:480 4:3.. a 720x576 screen in pixel output doesnt exit, it would be the wrong ratio.. Going and reading DVD demystified might help you as a primer.

Secondly your maths are as bad as your logic, lets just run with your pixel density example then..

Pixel density is what matters most. A 50" screen with 720 x 576 resolution will actually look better and sharper than a 100" 1920 x 1080 screen

a 50 inch diagonal screen has a screen width of 43 inches (in 16:9) so your 720 pixels is 1 pixel per 0.05972

a 100 inch diagonal screen has a screen width of 87 inches and so 1920 pixels is 1 pixel per 0.04322

Yes pixel density is what matters most.. And on a 100 inch screen in 1920x1080 you still have a higher pixel density than a 50 inch screen with a 720x576 !!! almost 50% higher !!

So how does a smaller screen, with a lower pixel density and a lower def source look sharper ???

Pixel denisty of a 42" PAL screen is about 22ppi or pixels per inch.

density of a 42" HD is about 52ppi (more than twice as much)

However an image size of a 720 x 576 picture on a 1920 x 1080 42" screen is only about 13.8" x 11". So the picture has to be blown up and stretched to fill the screen.

On a 22ppi screen the size would be 32" x 26"

Just because you have and are capable of the higher resolution doesn't mean one will be using it.

If you look at only the 4:3 part of a 16:9 panel in a lower def set it NEVER has a higher density than looking at the same sized ouput on a higher def display !!! Thats what you keep claiming and its totall ass backwards.

Now I know what you mean that if there was a way to upscale the resolution of non-hd content into a higher resolution. But currently it justs means the content is blown up to a higher reolution and is still pixelated. There's not much one can do if the original content is not high enough resolution. Also if the content is 4:3 it will still be 4:3 or pillarboxed in 16:9. Unless one zooms and cuts the top and bottom to fill the sides.

Go look at the software dScaler.. I was doing exactly that back in the late 90s with video capture, encoding, scaling and output. There IS a way !!

If the content is HD then there is no question or arguement about the benefits of a high performance screen. But like most of us that usually watch UBC cable, thai, television and rent non blu-ray movies most of the time there is very little benefit.

Now all your doing is trying to justify buying a low def screen.. Sure thats fine, if you happy with that then great, more power to you and thats your biz. But some of us are into video quality, and there is no way you can try to make the argument that a low def screen outperforms a high def screen. Even low def content can be made to look better on a high def screen. Irrelevant of aspect ratio being 4:3 or not.

Plasma screens are prone to burn in only if a color is on the screen or statc at the same area for long periods of time. The exception is if the area is black (not true black just pixel off black) or gray. Because black or gray means the pixels aren't on or is at its lowest power.

Here's the tip from the plasma manual:

1. Briefly engage the 4:3 mode to confirm that the side bars are set to mid-gray to minimize the chance of burn-in.

2. Limit the use of static images (computer, video games, etc.) to less than 10% of viewing time.

3. Adjust the CONTRAST setting at or below 50% on your new plasma TV

So you watch TV with ugly 'grey' bars on the sides.. I wouldnt do that myself and would find it far more distracting than a well processed stretch mode like the example I gave earlier of a non linear stretch (think s--t-re-c--h).

I'm not going to argue about online content, yes there are true online hd and games but I don't connect them to my large screen because I prefer to let my wife and her friends watch the big screen while I do my work on my computer and gaming machine. I use other smaller screens for than. It is not practical for us if the computer and big screen is connected because that means one of us has to sacrifice. So instead we decide if one wants to use the big screen or the computer, its not fair for either if us to use both at the same time.

OK.. I am just too into good video and also keep a dedicated PC as my media box so theres no fighting over either the PC use or the TV use.. I have my desktop PC connected to 2 screens on my desk, and a 32 inch HD ready TV screen to the side of my desk also to watch CNBC / Bloomberg (sound off usually) while the living room setup is free to be used by the GF.. Then in the rest of the living room I have a HD ready 42 incher for daytime and a projector and retractable screen set up for night time with both connected (through 4 way splitters) to my game consoles and my media PC (does nothing other than act as a media server / playback device, it boots straight into the media center skin and doesnt look like a PC, its in a box like a hifi with a VFD blue light text screen front and is operated purely with a hand held remote control etc) then in the bedrooms theres xbox360s networked into the house that can all browse the media center PC's jukebox of ripped video and music all with the same interface. So any bedroom or the living room can all watch TV, DVD or music independently all within the media center interface and skin. Theres no overlap or complexity, multiple zones for PC work or media viewing.

However I understand that I am a hobbyist and most people dont want to go to the expense or hassle of setting up whole home audio and video distribution networks. I dont see how the GF has to 'sacrifice' by watching HiDef instead of lowdef personally.. My GF loves being able to scroll through the music by cover art and play albums trough the system, or browse the DVD library with the remote control and watch high quality video (tho often lacking Thai subs !!) theres no 'sacrifice' in that you just have to have the smarts and interest to built it for her.

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I just had a thought also.. If your UBC is so bad you dont even want to full screen it on your set, how do you have it connected ?? Not with just the composite cable ??

All the UBC boxes I have used had at least s-video.. Tho if you have an ok TV you should consider binning the UBC box and using something that at least supports component.

If you want to go all out for improving the UBC signal, its now possible to capture the digital MPEG bitstream from a satellite STB and feed that raw MPEG data to a vista media center box so the signal is kept entirely in the digital domain right through to the scaling and upscaled output. The added bonus is full PVR, timeshifting, and the ability to handle multiple tuners (different sat packages) and a full clean EPG !! UBC is a sucky company but you really improve its usability with these mods.

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so after all the technical issues brought up and i can't for for heaven's sake understand most of it. buying a HD ready instead of true HDTV LCD is good enough??? some excellent deals on Samsung 40 inch LCD's at the moment. Series 4 especially. Sub 30k.

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Its too personal a choice.. Do you care about video quality ?? Will you pay for HiDef content or work to download it ?? Do you own or plan to own a BluRay player ??

If the answer is no to the above just get a HD ready set of 1365x768 at least.. Full HD is really only for those interested in high end video which UBC most certainly is not.

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