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My first HDTV, can someone please answer some questions?



 
 
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  #1  
Old November 24th 03, 05:22 PM
Benjamin Pratt
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Default My first HDTV, can someone please answer some questions?

Hello all,
I am buying my first HDTV and have been researching the technologies over
the last few days. I am still not sure on a few points. Could someone help
me out?

First, the set I am looking to buy is the Panasonic CT32HXC43 for $900 at
CircuitCity. This HDTV supports 1080i and 480p. I am primarily interested in
watching DVDs and channels 2-13 (ABC, CBS, NBS, FOX).

Now the questions:

1. The product listing at circuit city calls this set an HDTV monitor, which
means that it does not include a HDTV tuner, right?

2. I have ComCast limited basic which is "analog" channels 2-13. I have read
that cable companies are not allowed to mess with the signal from channels
2-13, so if the networks are broadcasting in HDTV then even this lowly
"limited basic" service will be carrying the HDTV signals. Is this correct?

3. Since the TV does not have a built in tuner, I would need to get a HDTV
reciever (like the HDT-100) to see the broadcasts in HDTV. Since the
broadcast of the cable is supposed to be identical as the "over-the-air"
broadcast, this should work, right?

4. When receiving 720p signals, they will be converted to 1080i? Are there
any direct-view HDTVs that support 480p, 720p and 1080i in 27" or 32", 4:3?
Would you recommend a few?

5. Without the HDTV reciever, the TV would convert the NTSC 480i signal to
EDTV 480p using the "line doubler" and "digital comb filter". Generally this
will provide a better picture for NTSC TV and VHS. Yes?

Thank you for your time,
Ben


  #2  
Old November 24th 03, 05:54 PM
Drew Volpe
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Default

Last time we met, Benjamin Pratt had said:
Hello all,
I am buying my first HDTV and have been researching the technologies over
the last few days. I am still not sure on a few points. Could someone help
me out?

First, the set I am looking to buy is the Panasonic CT32HXC43 for $900 at
CircuitCity. This HDTV supports 1080i and 480p. I am primarily interested in
watching DVDs and channels 2-13 (ABC, CBS, NBS, FOX).

Now the questions:

1. The product listing at circuit city calls this set an HDTV monitor, which
means that it does not include a HDTV tuner, right?


correct.

2. I have ComCast limited basic which is "analog" channels 2-13. I have read
that cable companies are not allowed to mess with the signal from channels
2-13, so if the networks are broadcasting in HDTV then even this lowly
"limited basic" service will be carrying the HDTV signals. Is this correct?

3. Since the TV does not have a built in tuner, I would need to get a HDTV
reciever (like the HDT-100) to see the broadcasts in HDTV. Since the
broadcast of the cable is supposed to be identical as the "over-the-air"
broadcast, this should work, right?


Comcast has HDTV service. You need a different cable box, but once you
have that you don't need an HDTV receiver. I have their HD service now
and have been happy with it. The only annoying thing is that they
don't yet have an agreement with CBS, so we don't get that channel
(which, for me, means few Pats games in HD).



dv


--
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The geographical center of Boston is in Roxbury. Due north of the
center we find the South End. This is not to be confused with South
Boston which lies directly east from the South End. North of the South
End is East Boston and southwest of East Boston is the North End.

Drew Volpe, mylastname at hcs o harvard o edu
  #3  
Old November 24th 03, 05:55 PM
BB
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Default

On Mon, 24 Nov 2003 17:22:37 GMT, Benjamin Pratt wrote:

1. The product listing at circuit city calls this set an HDTV monitor, which
means that it does not include a HDTV tuner, right?


Correct. Did they tell you that or did you have to figure it out yourself?

2. I have ComCast limited basic which is "analog" channels 2-13. I have read
that cable companies are not allowed to mess with the signal from channels
2-13, so if the networks are broadcasting in HDTV then even this lowly
"limited basic" service will be carrying the HDTV signals. Is this correct?


No. The HDTV signals will be on completely different channels. So there
will be an ABC channel and an ABC-HD channel.

3. Since the TV does not have a built in tuner, I would need to get a HDTV
reciever (like the HDT-100) to see the broadcasts in HDTV. Since the
broadcast of the cable is supposed to be identical as the "over-the-air"
broadcast, this should work, right?


They MAY broadcast the HD signals. Sometimes they contractual with
stations/networks and can't. For example, my local cable doesn't broadcast
CBS in HD. Usually the receiver is leased from the cable company for
~$5/month. They often try to force you to get digital cable as well, but
legally they must allow you to get the locals in HD if you're paying for
them as part of basic cable. The problem is, the CSRs are often unaware of
that.

4. When receiving 720p signals, they will be converted to 1080i? Are there
any direct-view HDTVs that support 480p, 720p and 1080i in 27" or 32", 4:3?
Would you recommend a few?


There are some, but usually it doesn't matter. Just set the STB for the
maximum resolution of your set. Often the output resolution is set on the
box (sometimes on the back) - you don't want to have to get up and flip
switches on the back of the box just because you've changed channels.

5. Without the HDTV reciever, the TV would convert the NTSC 480i signal to
EDTV 480p using the "line doubler" and "digital comb filter". Generally this
will provide a better picture for NTSC TV and VHS. Yes?


Not really. A bad signal times two does not become a better signal.

--
-BB-
To reply to me, drop the attitude (from my e-mail address, at least)
"It's a shallow life that doesn't give a person a few scars" - Garrison Keillor
  #4  
Old November 24th 03, 06:30 PM
Benjamin Pratt
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Default

They often try to force you to get digital cable as well, but
legally they must allow you to get the locals in HD if you're paying for
them as part of basic cable.

Ok, I have basic cable that includes the local channels. So the HD signals
will be transmitted, for local programming?
However, the cable company does not provide any sort of reciever (I have no
scrambled channels), so I would need an HDTV receiver see the local
programming in HD?

4. When receiving 720p signals, they will be converted to 1080i? Are

there
any direct-view HDTVs that support 480p, 720p and 1080i in 27" or 32",

4:3?
Would you recommend a few?


There are some, but usually it doesn't matter. Just set the STB for the
maximum resolution of your set. Often the output resolution is set on the
box (sometimes on the back) - you don't want to have to get up and flip
switches on the back of the box just because you've changed channels.

I would like a set that supports 720p so I can watch HD sports (like MNF) in
720p instead of 1080i


  #5  
Old November 24th 03, 06:42 PM
John 'Shaggy' Kolesar
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Default

On Mon, 24 Nov 2003 18:30:18 GMT,
wrote:
They often try to force you to get digital cable as well, but
legally they must allow you to get the locals in HD if you're paying for
them as part of basic cable.

Ok, I have basic cable that includes the local channels. So the HD signals
will be transmitted, for local programming?


Correct. It all comes over the same coax, it's just a matter of having the
right receiver and whether or not they scramble the channels (which they are
not allowed to do with locals).

However, the cable company does not provide any sort of reciever (I have no
scrambled channels), so I would need an HDTV receiver see the local
programming in HD?


You will need an HDTV tuner that is capable of receiving cable HD content. It
works differently than over-the-air content, so a tuner that works with an
antenna will most likely not be able to receive cable channels. They use a
different modulation on cable (QAM) than they do over-the-air (8VSB). There
are a couple HDTV manufacturers out there that include QAM support in their
built-in tuners. I don't know of any external HDTV tuners that support QAM
other than the ones you can only get through your cable company. However, if
you find one that is compatible with your local cable companies modulation,
you should be able to do a channel scan and pickup the locals in HD.


4. When receiving 720p signals, they will be converted to 1080i? Are

there
any direct-view HDTVs that support 480p, 720p and 1080i in 27" or 32",

4:3?
Would you recommend a few?


There are some, but usually it doesn't matter. Just set the STB for the
maximum resolution of your set. Often the output resolution is set on the
box (sometimes on the back) - you don't want to have to get up and flip
switches on the back of the box just because you've changed channels.

I would like a set that supports 720p so I can watch HD sports (like MNF) in
720p instead of 1080i


I don't know of any direct view HDTVs that support both 720p and 1080i.
However, you probably won't be able to tell the difference. 720p content
(MNF on ABC) look just as impressive on my 1080i display as true 1080i
content (CBS) does. I don't see any problems with the image due to conversion.
Personally, I wouldn't worry about this too much.


John.

--
*** John P. Kolesar ***
*** --- http://www.shagg.net/ ***
*** Valley Mead Brewery ***
***********************
  #6  
Old November 24th 03, 07:32 PM
BB
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Default

On Mon, 24 Nov 2003 18:30:18 GMT, Benjamin Pratt wrote:

Ok, I have basic cable that includes the local channels. So the HD signals
will be transmitted, for local programming?


If your cable company says they provide those channels, then yes.

However, the cable company does not provide any sort of reciever (I have no
scrambled channels), so I would need an HDTV receiver see the local
programming in HD?


Yes. The following boxes should do QAM (cable): Zenith HDV430, LG
LST-3100A, Samsung SIR-T351. These all do over-the-air as well.
does QAM. The LG LST-3100A (same box) does
QAM.

I would like a set that supports 720p so I can watch HD sports (like MNF) in
720p instead of 1080i


720p is just the method that ABC uses to get the signal to your STB. You
don't have to use that between the box & the TV. My set doesn't do 720p
and I watch MNF in HD every week.

--
-BB-
To reply to me, drop the attitude (from my e-mail address, at least)
"It's a shallow life that doesn't give a person a few scars" - Garrison Keillor
  #7  
Old November 24th 03, 07:38 PM
Benjamin Pratt
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Default

Ok, very informational, thanks.
(comments in line)


You will need an HDTV tuner that is capable of receiving cable HD content.

It
works differently than over-the-air content, so a tuner that works with an
antenna will most likely not be able to receive cable channels. They use

a
different modulation on cable (QAM) than they do over-the-air (8VSB).

There
are a couple HDTV manufacturers out there that include QAM support in

their
built-in tuners. I don't know of any external HDTV tuners that support

QAM
other than the ones you can only get through your cable company. However,

if
you find one that is compatible with your local cable companies

modulation,
you should be able to do a channel scan and pickup the locals in HD.

So, this one would probably work?
http://valueelectronics.com/zenith_HD_PDR.htm

I don't know of any direct view HDTVs that support both 720p and 1080i.
However, you probably won't be able to tell the difference. 720p content
(MNF on ABC) look just as impressive on my 1080i display as true 1080i
content (CBS) does. I don't see any problems with the image due to

conversion.
Personally, I wouldn't worry about this too much.

Ok, good to know. I was concerned about the lack of 720p out there. IYO, why
do you think ABC and ESPN went with 720p when most HDTVs do not have this
mode?

Another opinion question:
In the future, do you think manufactures will be moving toward combining
HDTV tuners with the monitor, or will they continue to be mostly seperate
components like they are now?


  #8  
Old November 24th 03, 07:44 PM
Benjamin Pratt
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Yes. The following boxes should do QAM (cable): Zenith HDV430, LG
LST-3100A, Samsung SIR-T351. These all do over-the-air as well.
does QAM. The LG LST-3100A (same box) does
QAM.

Ok, good, I'll look at those models.


720p is just the method that ABC uses to get the signal to your STB. You
don't have to use that between the box & the TV. My set doesn't do 720p
and I watch MNF in HD every week.


I know I can watch it in 1080i, but I had read that 720p is better for
sports or anything with a lot of movement.

Thanks,
Ben


  #9  
Old November 24th 03, 07:49 PM
John 'Shaggy' Kolesar
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On Mon, 24 Nov 2003 19:44:49 GMT,
wrote:
I know I can watch it in 1080i, but I had read that 720p is better for
sports or anything with a lot of movement.


Theoretically, yes. But I bet it would be pretty hard to really tell the
difference.


John.

--
*** John P. Kolesar ***
*** --- http://www.shagg.net/ ***
*** Valley Mead Brewery ***
***********************
  #10  
Old November 24th 03, 07:50 PM
John 'Shaggy' Kolesar
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Default

On Mon, 24 Nov 2003 19:38:15 GMT,
wrote:
Ok, very informational, thanks.
(comments in line)


You will need an HDTV tuner that is capable of receiving cable HD content.


So, this one would probably work?
http://valueelectronics.com/zenith_HD_PDR.htm


I can't say for sure, but it looks like it would.


John.

--
*** John P. Kolesar ***
*** --- http://www.shagg.net/ ***
*** Valley Mead Brewery ***
***********************
 




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