A few questions...

Discussion in 'Beginners, General Questions' started by Geoff H, May 22, 2006.

  1. Geoff H

    Geoff H Stunt Coordinator

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    I went to one of our local BestBuy franchises over the weekend, I attempted to ask a guy in the TV area some questions, but he seemed as if I was a nuisance, kept yawning & answered my questions with one word.

    I am looking to take my HT to the next level. I've a 48" Mits rptv with a Denon 1910 dvd player - I first need to replace my TV (Need HDMI which my current one does not). Can someone tell me the differences/advantages/disadvantages between LCD, Plasma & rptv?

    Also, I have analog cable (goes directly into the TV(s), no additional box needed, what do I need to go HD? Obviously I'll either have to go to digital cable or satellite, but can someone give me a 101 on what type of receiver/box that will be aditionally needed? Do I buy it or does the cable/satellite folks lease? What other considerations should I be concerned with?

    I would appreciate any advice,

    Geoff
     
  2. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

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    I’m not surprised that you did not get very good service at one of the big box stores. But it is sometimes possible to find a knowledgeable salesperson. As to your questions:

    •Is your current TV an HD display? If it is, you really won’t need to replace it right away. As it happens, the current HD-DVD movies will properly output 1080 over component cables. True enough this may change in the future, but right now you don’t have to run out and buy a new display.
    •I’ll defer on the advantages of each display, unless you want a new TV for reasons other than an HDMI input.
    •Does your cable provider have an HD offering. All of them do not. If yours does, they will provide you with a new box when you sign up for the HD package. This may or may not cost extra for the box—it will certainly cost more for the monthly fee.
    •You can switch to satellite. Both Dish and DirectTV have HD offerings. Both also offer HD DVR with their offerings. Of course the HD DVRs cost extra. Since I’ve not lived in the States for a year or so, I’m not up on the cost of the basic HD receiver, but I suspect that it is extra (they were when I lived in Texas). For sure the subscription service is extra.
    •Satellite receivers are normally paid for by the consumer. Cable receivers are frequently leased.
    •You don’t need HDMI for either cable HD or satellite HD. Component will work.

    Of course if our TV is not HD, then you will probably want a new display.
     
  3. Geoff H

    Geoff H Stunt Coordinator

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    Lew,Thanks for the quick reply.


    The TV is HD ready/capable, are you saying the HD-DVD player(s) will output HD over component? I thought it was HDMI only???

    Geoff
     
  4. RickRO

    RickRO Stunt Coordinator

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    Geoff,

    I'm not sure about the HD-DVD component question. I checked the Toshiba website and it tends to lead the reader to the fact that HDMI is the supported way to deliver the HD content.

    If you truly want to take your HT experience to the next level you should consider a FP unit. If you have the ability to control the light in your room you should really look into it. I think you would be very happy with FP.

    Just my .02

    Regards,

    RickRO
     
  5. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

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    It is actually not the hardware Geoff, but the software. The hardware can in fact block HD from being output over analog outputs (i.e. component), but it only does so if the software (the specific HD-DVD disk being played) has a bit set (a flag) that tells the hardware to not output HD over the analog outputs.

    So far none of the initial movies released on HD-DVD have the flag set. So you are good to go for now.

    However that does not mean that things won’t change in the future. After all, any studio (or all of them) can decide to start releasing any or all of their movies with the flag set.

    Of course if they do, then you can purchase a new display at that time.
     
  6. Cees Alons

    Cees Alons Moderator
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    Cees Alons
    That flag Lew is referring to, is called the ICT-bit. Now, the ICT-bit was a very late addition to the official specs, and it has been rumoured that the hardware manufacturers were against it.

    So, one cannot be sure about this, but it is thinkable that the first HD DVD players don't even obey the ICT-bit. That might be the very reason why the flag isn't set on the first batch of releases.

    On the other hand: a willingness not to estrange first adapters who still own non-HDMI TV sets might have been a strong incentive too...


    Cees
     
  7. Geoff H

    Geoff H Stunt Coordinator

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    [Keanu voice] Whoa. [/Keanu voice]

    Cool. Thanks all for the good info.

    Geoff
     

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