The difference between DTV and HDTV?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Max Knight, Feb 2, 2001.

  1. Max Knight

    Max Knight Supporting Actor

    May 8, 2000
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    Ok, I'm getting close to pulling the trigger on a 40H80. I plan on mainly using this TV for DVDs, as I'm not ready to spring for an HDTV decoder for my DirectTV setup. I have one last question (at least until I think of another one!):
    What is the story with DTV and HDTV? I know that HDTV has higher resolution, and that you need a digital TV to get there, but what is DTV without HD? I understand that some stations broadcast a DTV signal, and that this ties into satellite as well somehow, but I'm rather stumped. If I get this new TV, will I suddenly be taking advantage of something from my DSS system that I have been missing on an analog set? What about OTA?
    Thanks in advance,
  2. Gerald C

    Gerald C Auditioning

    Nov 14, 2000
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    You can do a lot of reading on this subject, but here is a quick overview. Digital television can be divided into two broad categories: (1) Digital satellite and digital cable, and (2) ATSC. The first category has become very common, but its capability is limited to encoding, transmitting, and decoding standard NTSC analog television. The second category is the lastest Advanced Television Systems Committee (ATSC) standard for broadcast digital television. It so happens that the satellite and cable infrastructure also supports this standard, but it is different than the first category. Within the ATSC standard are 18 different formats, of which just a few are considered High Definition (HDTV). These HDTV formats are the ones that correspond to 720 or 1080 scan lines, and they are also encoded in 16:9 wide screen format by definition. Many of the other ATSC formats are often referred to as SD (standard definition), but may also include widescreen aspect ratios. There are lots of links to FAQ about ATSC/DTV. Do a search on for a start.
    I forgot to mention DVD, which is of course another DTV standard. DVD, while its output is NTSC, is capable of higher performance than virtually any other NTSC source when component video connections are used between the player and a good monitor (e.g. HDTV-ready). Most folks will agree that there is nothing to be gained by viewing satellite DTV on an HD set vs. a conventional set with line doubler. And in general, ALL ATSC formats will look better on HDTV-ready sets. Even the lowest 480i format will benefit from ATSC color standards vs. an equivalent NTSC.
    --Gerald C
  3. David Von Pein

    David Von Pein Producer

    Feb 4, 2002
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    Two years later, I'll say it .......

    Thank you Gerald!

    Some useful info there.

    (Anything different now....2 years hence?)

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