Types of High Definition Television (HDTV)

 


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High-definition television (HDTV) became popular at the end of the 1900’s. They were in essence super TV’s boasting digital surround sound, hi-tech resolution, widescreen-compatible for old-time movie formats. But amid the different types that have popped up, there can be confusion for consumers, so let’s take a look at what’s out there today.

Analog

An analog television receives signals via satellite, over the air or through a cable; whereas older (standard) televisions accepted signals from radio waves transformed into sounds and screen images.

Digital

Digital television (DTV) converts signals for DVD players to analog. However, limited pixels limit resolution for viewers, affecting quality imaging on the television screen.

Reportedly U. S. broadcasts are moving in the direction of DTV transmission, transmitting video and sound data zeros and ones over wave transmissions, basically using the UHF spectrum over the air with a 6 MHz bandwidth, similar to analog transmitting.

Features and benefits of DTV include:

  • Better quality image.
  • Better resolution with big screen TVs
  • Better video graphic imaging.
  • Multicasting.
  • Interactive content can be transmitted.
  • High-definition (HDTV) compatibility.

    Bad news: older standard analog televisions cannot show DTV productions. So you may still need two TVs at this time, depending upon cable and how late you stay up and want good content, etc.

    HD

    HDTV is part of DTV. It carries the highest standards for DTV, as set forth by the Advanced Television Standards Committee (ATSC) for digital television.

    Of the18 digital broadcast formats for video, the top tier for HDTV needs to reflect the following over analog and other lower standards with respect to:

    Aspect ratio - HDTV must have a 16:9 aspect ratio; standard TV only needs a 4:3.

    Resolution - HDTV needs high resolution, like up to 1920 x 1080 pixels; standard TV only needs 704 x 480 pixels.

    Frame rate – HDTV needs the highest frame rate (like screen speed), at least 60 frames per second. Standard TV is under 24.

    The mains things to note with high-definition visual and sound are twofold. Number one, the television station needs to be transmitting high-definition signals. Without that much, no need to continue. And number two, you need to have the right television equipment to receive and view the high-definition transmissions.

    So get informed and check out your systems and equipment! It’ll make upgrading to HDTV that much easier – and enjoyable for your family.

    Hyun Kim is a freelance writer who writes about loudspeakers, home audio and home theater related topics. He loves to visit Stereo|411 to discuss home theater topics and find home theater stores .

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