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    • Former MSE Helen
    • By Former MSE Helen 29th May 12, 4:58 PM
    • 2,324Posts
    • 971Thanks
    Former MSE Helen
    'Don't buy a HD Ready telly thinking it's high-definition – it's not' blog discussion
    • #1
    • 29th May 12, 4:58 PM
    'Don't buy a HD Ready telly thinking it's high-definition – it's not' blog discussion 29th May 12 at 4:58 PM
    This is the discussion to link on the back of Martin's blog. Please read the blog first, as this discussion follows it.

    Please click 'post reply' to discuss below.
    Last edited by Former MSE Helen; 29-05-2012 at 5:02 PM.
Page 1
    • MarkLS12
    • By MarkLS12 29th May 12, 6:35 PM
    • 244 Posts
    • 141 Thanks
    • #2
    • 29th May 12, 6:35 PM
    • #2
    • 29th May 12, 6:35 PM
    It also worth considering that for screen sizes under 32" most people would be hard pushed to see a difference between the picture on a "HD Ready" TV and "Full HD 1080p" TV.

    There also the problem of TVs being HD and having Freeview built in but not supporting Freeview HD channels.
    Last edited by MarkLS12; 29-05-2012 at 7:16 PM.
  • jamesd
    • #3
    • 29th May 12, 6:58 PM
    • #3
    • 29th May 12, 6:58 PM
    Perhaps "Half HD" should be reserved for 3D sets that don't provide 1080i or 1080p to each eye but instead split the picture so that each gets half?

    The bigger potential rip-off with a HD Ready set is the complete lack of any digital tuner requirement, so you get no picture at all unless you have an extra piece of equipment.

    For HD itself the bigger ripoff is the lack of content and complete lack, so far as I know, of any 1080p service. So every TV is only half HD at best - either interleaved 1080i showing half the lines at once or 720p. Then there are the half TV channels that use lots of compression instead of full bandwidth.

    HD Ready works and does what it says. Better to look forward to the newer challenges or require "no picture without extra equipment" labels for HD Ready sets.
    Last edited by jamesd; 29-05-2012 at 7:59 PM.
    • paddyrg
    • By paddyrg 29th May 12, 10:25 PM
    • 13,113 Posts
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    • #4
    • 29th May 12, 10:25 PM
    • #4
    • 29th May 12, 10:25 PM
    HD *typically* comes in 2 flavours (720p/1080i and 1080p), but there is no definition of HD beyond being a marketing term. It is just not SD (Standard Definition). Must admit I am surprised this is news enough to be bloggable, we're best part of a decade or so into 'HD'. There are also many more, higher resolutions and aspect ratios used in cinematic digital projection for instance.

    Interlacing was a stroke of genius for making pictures seem smoother, especially for things like sports. In fact, football etc look pretty horrible when shot progressive. Progressive works well with a good cinematographer who understands how fast an object can and cannot pass through a frame, or the fastest you can pan without getting stuttering. Alas everybody thinks progressive images are inherently 'better' than interlaced ones, the case isn't as simple as that.

    Me, I actually still prefer the picture on a good CRT.
    • ronangel
    • By ronangel 30th May 12, 1:51 AM
    • 124 Posts
    • 141 Thanks
    • #5
    • 30th May 12, 1:51 AM
    • #5
    • 30th May 12, 1:51 AM
    when you buy a "full HD" (1080p) television make sure that it has a HD freeview tuner incorporated or you will not be able to watch HD freeview channels without an external HD tuner which defeats the point! unless you are only going to watch via a freeview HD satellite receiver.
    The richard montgomery matter

    • redux
    • By redux 30th May 12, 3:50 AM
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    • #6
    • 30th May 12, 3:50 AM
    • #6
    • 30th May 12, 3:50 AM
    Given that probably quite a few people will have been buying new TVs recently, triggered into it by approaching digital switchover, which has now happened across about 90% of the country, I think Martin could have produced this useful advice a little earlier.

    Switchover here started roughly a couple of months ago, and the old Freeview box was superseded, and the CRT telly I bought on eBay a few years back has always had its digital tuner go off after half an hour, so although one choice was just another Freeview box the excuse for a new telly instead managed to gain ground.

    So I looked into and got the hang of all of this a couple of months ago, and I don't think I'll have been alone.

    I reckoned if it was going to be HD at all it might as well be 1080, and went for one also supporting having an internet connection.
    • worried jim
    • By worried jim 30th May 12, 7:56 AM
    • 10,854 Posts
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    worried jim
    • #7
    • 30th May 12, 7:56 AM
    • #7
    • 30th May 12, 7:56 AM
    I bought a 43" HD ready 3D Samsung for £364 in December and I knew that it isn't full hd, but for £364 it is stunning and I certainly have no issues with it or the wonderful picture quality.
    Last edited by worried jim; 31-05-2012 at 7:47 AM.
    "Only two things are infinite-the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not so sure about the universe"
    Albert Einstein
    • CoolHotCold
    • By CoolHotCold 30th May 12, 8:10 AM
    • 2,110 Posts
    • 1,307 Thanks
    • #8
    • 30th May 12, 8:10 AM
    • #8
    • 30th May 12, 8:10 AM
    A lot of people forget to figure out where they are going to be sitting and how far away the TV is going to be.

    The Screen size and distance to the viewing area makes a big difference in buying a TV along with the source.

    For example viewing SD content on a 42" TV (capable of 1080p) would be about 12 feet minimum distance, any closer and you would notice the blockness (though most image processors nowerdays are good at filling in the blanks (remember 576 resolution is only the source, you still see all 1080 lines, which means the TV is creating 500 extra lines which it's made up itself) ) but back to the distance, viewing 1080p content on a 1080p 42" TV would only be about half the distance (meaning you can sit closer without noticing any problems).

    Also the further away you are from the TV the bigger the screen should be.
    • Azari
    • By Azari 30th May 12, 9:27 AM
    • 3,941 Posts
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    • #9
    • 30th May 12, 9:27 AM
    • #9
    • 30th May 12, 9:27 AM
    One point about the naming that you missed:

    HD ready was originally used for TV's that would accept HD input but did not have an HD tuner.

    For some time, the only HD would come from DSat and HD DVD's.

    It was only after HD became available of Freeview that you could have a stand-alone TV that showed HD. (There might have been the odd Freesat integrated TV with an HD tuner but if there was, they were rare.)
    There are two types of people in the world: Those that can extrapolate information.
    • jgriggle
    • By jgriggle 30th May 12, 12:05 PM
    • 165 Posts
    • 262 Thanks
    The best way is to trust your own eyes. There are some great 720 line 'HD Ready' TVs out there and some not so great 1080 line 'Full HD' sets.

    My four year old 42" 720 line Panasonic plasma still shows a better picture both in standard and HD modes than a lot of modern 1080 line TVs.

    At the time I bought it I was working in the TV/Home Cinema trade so had the luxury of being able to have a good play with lots of models, both 720 and 1080.
    • lincoln_dj
    • By lincoln_dj 30th May 12, 1:04 PM
    • 28 Posts
    • 21 Thanks
    "And that’s why we should find a new term to describe lower 720 resolution TVs."

    There already is - 720p. Every TV I've ever looked at will say either 720p or 1080p. it's really not that difficult at all...
    • edl2011
    • By edl2011 30th May 12, 1:44 PM
    • 19 Posts
    • 16 Thanks
    Missed the point
    Sorry Martin but you have missed the point on this one.

    Whilst there is a technical difference in the picture resolution between the two terms, the key thing to point out is that if you buy a "HD Ready" TV, you won't actually get a HD picture unless you connect a HD source to it. Normal Freeview is not HD so you will only see a HD picture if you connect Sky HD or a Blu-ray player, for example.

    MOST TVs FOR SALE TODAY do not have Freeview HD tuners built in.

    If you are buying a new TV then you should be buying one with a built-in Freeview HD tuner. Then you will be able to enjoy an improved picture. Otherwise, your regular TV watching will be THE SAME as before.
  • jonthedog
    CRTs generally have better picture and sound quality than LCD/LED for standard def
    Sorry Martin, but this time you are confusing the issue yourself.
    As previous poster have mentioned, so called HDTV in this country is broadcast at a resolution of 1080i, which HD ready TVs are perfectly capable of displaying as well as 720p.
    The only time someone might possibly notice a difference is if they are watching a blue ray disc which IS capable of outputting 1080p resolution. That said, this is almost not perceivable on screens below around 37", and only then when you compare them side by side.

    The fact is, people might not be happy with the picture quality on their flat screen TVs is because for standard definition TV they are generally worse than CRTs. I got a top of the range Sony Bravia a couple of years ago, compared it side by side with my old school CRT and took the Bravia back as both the sound and picture quality was worse. That's one of the reason's they don't have CRTs in the shops anymore...they really don't want people to see that SD picture and sound quality are worse on flat screens. Don't get one expecting it to be better for the time being...only to save space or add Smart TV functionality. The only reason you might want 1080p is if you use it as a computer monitor or want a TV >37".
    Last edited by jonthedog; 30-05-2012 at 3:00 PM.
    • bob_a_builder
    • By bob_a_builder 30th May 12, 3:05 PM
    • 1,703 Posts
    • 827 Thanks
    Bit late in the day ( or should I say decade) to be running this issue isn't it !
    • nomoneytoday
    • By nomoneytoday 30th May 12, 3:23 PM
    • 4,768 Posts
    • 2,883 Thanks
    Maybe label them as 1080HD, 720HD or 1080-3D to standardise them?
    • rpb
    • By rpb 30th May 12, 4:26 PM
    • 124 Posts
    • 127 Thanks
    Looks like everyone else beat me to it: another scam is HD TVs coming with "Freeview" and not "Freeview HD". How many people have been caught out by that?! That should be outlawed as well. They should have to call them "HD TV with Non-HD Freeview"!
    • roddydogs
    • By roddydogs 30th May 12, 4:39 PM
    • 6,434 Posts
    • 2,783 Thanks
    Never mind Martin, your only about 10years late with this info, and as usual the old "CRT was better" dinosaurs crawl out of the woodwork. Martin go back to bed.
  • jonthedog
    CRT IS better!
    • tom717
    • By tom717 30th May 12, 6:44 PM
    • 176 Posts
    • 92 Thanks
    You are way late on this one, but I agree that the naming convention is misleading as evidenced by the fact you use it incorrectly!
    Officially there is HD Ready, HD Ready 1080p, HD TV and HD TV 1080p.
    HD Ready (whether 1080p or not) was supposed to signify that the television does not have its own receiver, whereas HD TV does. Have a look at this pdf.

    I think a lot of the confusion comes from retailers using the phrase Full HD.
    It reminds me of the names for different USB specs - we have full speed, high speed and I think super speed. Much easier to use 1.1, 2.0 and 3.0 to figure out which spec supersedes the others.
    • photome
    • By photome 30th May 12, 7:57 PM
    • 14,234 Posts
    • 9,739 Thanks
    Isnt this non news?

    I have had an HD ready plasma 42" for about 4 years, the HD pic quality is way better than the SD pic
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