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HDTV TECH

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Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Jan 31, 2006 Published: Jan 01, 2006 0 comments
How much do LCDs and plasmas really suck?

You know those little plastic plug thingies you put in electrical outlets so that kids don't stick their fingers and such into them? Turns out, they're there for a reason. My parents dutifully put these in all the outlets in our house, and, when I was just past the age where they figured I couldn't possibly be stupid enough to stick anything into an outlet, I found an innocent little piece of copper wire. At this point, you can see where this story is headed. Lacking any polyvinyl chloride polymer to impede my process, and always having an inquisitive mind, I inserted said wire into said outlet. The results were predictable. I believe vaporization was involved. Since then, I've had a healthy (ahem) respect for electricity.

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Mark Fleischmann Posted: Oct 28, 2005 Published: Sep 28, 2005 0 comments
How a new codec may change DTV as we know it.

MPEG-4 Advanced Video Coding (AVC) is a next-generation video codec (coder/decoder) that's about to change the face of digital television—slimming it down, enabling it to move into narrower channels, and probably changing how it looks. I can almost see your eyes glazing over: Lucy, you got some 'splainin' to do.

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Jed Deame Posted: Oct 28, 2005 Published: Nov 28, 2005 0 comments
Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Oct 28, 2005 Published: Sep 28, 2005 0 comments
It's no secret that, if you have a new projection display (front or rear), you'll eventually need to replace its light source. Take one look at them, and you'll see that these aren't your ordinary 100-watt bulbs—that, and the fact that these light sources cost hundreds of dollars each.
Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Oct 28, 2005 Published: Aug 28, 2005 0 comments
Putting the theory to the test.

In my GearWorks column in our January 2005 issue, I talked about how, depending on your viewing distance, the resolution of your display may not matter. To sum up, your eye has a finite resolution (like a digital camera), and, as objects get smaller with distance, there is a point where your eye can no longer distinguish between bigger and smaller pixels. Over long distances, this is obvious, but it surprised a lot of people that it could be so noticeable in shorter (in-room) distances.

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Peter Putman Posted: Apr 10, 2005 Published: Apr 11, 2005 0 comments
Integrated digital cable-ready TV sets are here. How well do they work?
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Peter Putman Posted: Mar 27, 2005 0 comments
Flat-screen imaging technologies like LCD and DLP are slowly toppling the cathode-ray tube (CRT) from its pedestal. How much do you really understand about these new ways of watching TV?
Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Jan 08, 2005 Published: Sep 08, 2006 0 comments
Or, how I learned to stop worrying and love 720p.
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Geoffrey Morrison Posted: Jul 08, 2004 Published: Sep 08, 2006 0 comments
This new technology could replace plasma and LCD as the must-have for flat-panel displays. Plasma and LCD are dead. Well, at least that's what Kodak, Dupont, Universal Display Corporation, and a few others would like you to start thinking. One of the new technologies coming down the HT highway is called Organic Light Emitting Diode (OLED), and it could be the future of flat-panel displays. Soon your TV may be able to trace its lineage back to the power light on your VCR.
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Scott Wilkinson Posted: Apr 04, 2004 0 comments
An eye-opening introduction to the physics and physiology of color and vision.
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Rebecca Day Posted: Jul 14, 2003 Published: Jul 15, 2003 0 comments
The process may be painful, but the result is a bundle of joy.

Every year, I throw a Super Bowl party. This year I hosted an AFC Championship party instead because I wanted to show my friends championship football in HD. The only post-season game I knew I could receive in HD was CBS's broadcast of the AFC Championship, which I pulled in using an off-air antenna. My friends, predictably, were blown away by high-def football.

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Peter Putman Posted: May 12, 2003 Published: May 13, 2003 0 comments
One man's quest for the ultimate Super Bowl party included HDTV in every room.

It started out innocently enough, back in January 2000. ABC had concluded a season of Monday Night Football broadcasts in their 720p HDTV format and was putting the icing on the cake with an HD telecast of Super Bowl XXXIV from Atlanta, Georgia. Since I had watched a few of the MNF games in HD, I decided to set up a front projector and an HD monitor and invite some friends and neighbors over to give 'em a taste of sports in high definition. The game turned out to be a big hit. Over 30 folks attended and marveled at the widescreen images from my Sony VPL-VW10HT projector and Princeton AF3.0HD monitor. Never mind that I had to jury-rig an antenna on my rear deck and run coaxial cable into my basement to feed a single Panasonic set-top tuner, then use a video-distribution amplifier to run two component video feeds into my living room and my basement theater. Everyone was amazed at the picture quality and gorged themselves on a feast of wings, subs, pizza, chips, dip, and assorted desserts.

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Peter Putman Posted: Mar 05, 2003 Published: Mar 06, 2003 0 comments
Home Theater's guide to using indoor and outdoor antennas to pick up digital TV broadcasts.

It's funny how everything old is new again. Forty years ago, you might have watched from the backyard as Dad carefully climbed up a ladder to the roof, strapped a bracket onto the chimney, and attached a large T-shaped television antenna so that you could watch those glorious black-and-white (and sometimes color) images from I Love Lucy, Bonanza, The Wonderful World of Disney, Gunsmoke, and other TV programs of that era.

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Mark Fleischmann Posted: Sep 02, 2002 Published: Sep 03, 2002 0 comments
A sharper, wider view of the current sports action and what you can expect in the future.

High-definition television isn't just about movies. Another killer app is making the case for an HDTV in every home: sports. Highfalutin videophile talk about the ability to see what the director intended pales beside the sports fan's visceral need to follow the ball and watch the action develop. Sports bars are where many fans get their first taste of sports on HDTV. The falling price of HDTVs has created the irresistible urge to bring the experience home. Plus, at home you can add a good surround sound system. A Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack that captures the roar of the crowd only adds to the excitement.

Kevin Miller Posted: Sep 30, 2001 Published: Oct 01, 2001 0 comments
Switching scenarios for component video sources.

Switching component video sources is a double-edged sword. For a number of reasons, there's plenty of need for it; however, until recently, it was fairly expensive to do it well (read: without adversely affecting the video signal). Still, there are a number of scenarios in which video switching, transcoding, or distributing high-resolution video (particularly HDTV signals) is important.

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