HDTV ... 1080i 720p question

Discussion in 'Displays' started by Aaron_H, Nov 13, 2003.

  1. Aaron_H

    Aaron_H Agent

    Sep 11, 2003
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    Pretty soon, I am planning to start doing some looking around for my first HDTV set. I had a few questions, though.
    I realize there are basically 2 HDTV formats being broadcast right now: 1080i and 720p. I was wanting to know if most HDTVs on the market just display 1080i? If I happened to buy a 1080i set, and was watching ABC (720p), what exactly would happen?

    Basically, what I want to know is, does a 1080i HDTV always upconvert 720p to 1080i? Is this image ever the true progressive on 1080i sets? When watching 480i (standard) on 1080i HDTV, what happens?

    ...really confused...
  2. Chad B

    Chad B Stunt Coordinator

    Jul 5, 2001
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    Yes, most HDTV's display 1080i rather than 720p, but more and more of the newer fixed panel displays (DLP, LCD, Plasma) do 720p natively. Normally what happens when you watch a 720p broadcast on a 1080i TV is your HD tuner, cable box, or Dish receiver will convert the 720p to 1080i before sending it to the TV. There is usually a menu selection in the source component to set at either 1080i or 720p, and it converts everything to the resolution you select.
    Most 1080i sets will not even display a picture if they're fed 720p, but the few that do usually convert the 720p to 1080i. 1080i is not a progressive resolution; it's interlaced. However, the resolution's so high that it is usually not bothersome or noticed.
    When watching 480i on a 1080i HDTV, it is usually upconverted to 480p (or sometimes 540p or 1080i, depending on the set).
    Have fun, and good luck with your purchase!


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