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European satellite HDTV specs agreed

Written by Petteri Pyyny (Google+) @ 21 Jun 2004 14:09 User comments (6)

European satellite HDTV specs agreed Leading European satellite operator Astra and 60 European broadcasters have agreed on a HDTV initiative that aims to create a standard HDTV platform across the Europe. Astra is the satellite provider that most large European satellite broadcasters, including British Sky Digital, use.
The group agreed to standardize on two broadcast resolutions, 720p50 and 1080i25. 720p50 means that the broadcast resolution would be 1280x720 pixels with 50 full frames per second (==progressive) and 1080i25 means a resolution of 1920x1080 pixels with 25 full frames per second (==interlaced). Both resolutions are the most commonly used HDTV broadcast resolutions in the United States (but American HDTV uses higher framerate). Both resolutions are natively in 16:9 aspect ratio.

Group also agreed to create a pan-European "HDTV" label that would be granted to devices, such as TVs and digital set-top boxes, that are ready to receive and decode HDTV material. Compression formats that the European HDTV will use are MPEG-2 and MPEG-4 AVC.

Source: Astra press release

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6 user comments

122.6.2004 4:58

Regardless of the resolution, I am concerned about the seemingly over-wide disparity in the fps rate. 25 fps vs. 50 fps? Why such a difference? Seems to me that with the higher resolution of the two mentioned above (1920x1080 pixels), the lower frame-rate per second would be false economy, and only serve to nullify what the higher resolution would gain. (In other words, I would have thought that a high-resolution and a high frame rate, would have gone hand-in-hand). Crisp imagery coupled with blurry motion doesn't make sense to me. And whatever the other specs, I DO so very much wish they would abandon, once and for all, *anything* interlaced. interlaced video is a fossil. A petrified relic best left buried with the Dinosaurs of the past.

222.6.2004 6:20

many dvds are interlaced. i know because i use dvdx to make divx backups of dvds and it detects wether there interlaced or not. like 2/3 of my dvds are interlaced. however the frame rate thing is stupid.

322.6.2004 16:46

The fact that many DVDs are interlaced doesn't excuse the problem. It doesn't help anything - it just serves to show me again and again what an abomination interlaced DVDs are. And the combination of divx + interlaced video constitutes a marriage made in hell. In my experience, at least with the divx's *I've* made, they are unqualified disasters. Jerky, jumpy motion abounds, yielding a video which is painful to watch. (Non-interlaced, i.e. Progressive dvds, are completely exempt from these problems.) See if you can pull a Dr. DivX on this little puppy, pcshateme : Planes, Trains And Automobiles, a light comedy starring Steve Martin and John Candy. I wouldn't be able to make a clean copy of this DVD if you paid me. No........ interlaced video has no place in future High Definition Video, whether broadcast or pressed onto disc. (My .02c).

422.6.2004 16:57

well most of my dvds come out ok, but then again, most of my dvds are anime

523.6.2004 10:40

So... am I wrong in asuming that us europeans are now taking major steps in the direction of HDTV? I know HDTV is widely talked about in the United States, it seems strange to me that the european area and asia haven´t followed the states´ example.

623.6.2004 15:06

I expect they'll still be blathering about it (bla-bla-bla-bla....) this time next year, because aside from the many different proposed standards, the BIGGEST problem for content providers is installing a "foolproof" DRM system. The video will have to be fairly-well crippled before they will let you receive it via broadcast. (You will be able to *stream* it <watch it>), but until such time as "they" can find a way to prohibit you from making a direct digital copy, they'll be yapping about it forever, bla-bla-bla-bla-bla-bla-bla........... And that goes double for HD-DVD Discs. Pull up a chair, set yerself down, pour another (1000) cups of coffee...... you'll be waiting for a while yet.

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