Jump to content

Sign up for a free account!

Signing up for an account is fast and free. As a member you can join in the conversation, enter contests and you won't get the popup ads that guests get. Click here to create your free account.

- - - - -

HD Broadcast Formats

This topic has been archived. This means that you cannot reply to this topic.
2 replies to this topic

#1 of 3 Tod Golden

Tod Golden

    Stunt Coordinator

  • 82 posts
  • Join Date: May 03 2003

Posted May 09 2003 - 01:07 PM

I recently purchased an RCA Scenium HD61W140 RPTV with the built in off air tuner. I am able to receive HD broadcasts through the use of a VHF/UHF Antennae. Unfortunately my cable company does not transmit HD, but is in the process of BETA testing the HD cable boxes. At this point I am unwilling to switch to satellite because I also have internet access through them.

When watching an analog program I can bring up the channel bar that shows program information. This tells me that I am watching an SD program in the 4:3 format 480i and whether the screen is normal, stretched or zoomed.

When I switch to an HD broadcast and bring up the channel bar, it tells me that I am watching an HD broadcast in 16:9 and 720p. However, the program appears to be in the 4:3 format with the black bars on each side.

Is this normal for this type of programming? Am I missing something here? I know that 720p is the best format for HD and I am impressed with the picture quality. Just a little confused here.

Any help or information is greatly appreciated.


FYI - When watching HD I am unable to switch screen modes.

#2 of 3 Steve Schaffer

Steve Schaffer


  • 3,759 posts
  • Join Date: Apr 15 1999

Posted May 09 2003 - 01:31 PM

Local HD stations don't show true HD all the time, as most of the time there is no HD programming coming in from the network. When you see the black bars on the side you are watching an upconverted 480i picture. The station takes the 4/3 aspect ratio 480i picture and adds black bars on the side and upconverts the scanrate to 720p (I'm assuming this is an ABC affilliate as all the other Networks that broadcast HD use 1080i).

The black bars are added at the station to make a 16/9 aspect ratio picture broadcast at 720p.

When you see a picture on this station with no black bars on the sides, that is true HD, not upconverted 480i, and should look much better.

ABC broadcasts most all of it's primetime sitcoms and dramas, and most movies in true HD. Reality shows and newsmagazine shows are not broadcast in HD, so they will have the black bars on the side.
Steve S.
I prefer not to push the subwoofers until they're properly run in.

#3 of 3 Craig Robertson

Craig Robertson

    Supporting Actor

  • 986 posts
  • Join Date: May 12 1999

Posted May 10 2003 - 03:27 AM

what would be really helpful would be if the system would tell us the original resolution of the content as well as the broadcast format.