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720p vs 1080p - the future

Discussion in 'Televisions' started by doctorjuggles, Sep 28, 2005.

  1. doctorjuggles

    doctorjuggles
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    Not quite as straight-forward as the subject line suggests, but bear with me...

    If I'd known then what I know now, I'd have bought something other than my Panny PW6 and my Philips 26" LCD, due to neither of them being HD ready.

    What I'd like to know now, though, is what's the point in all the HD ready panels now being 720p when, plainly, 1080p is a better resolution. I realise there aren't many 1080p screens available at the moment, but a cynic might say that's because they're holding back on them as another future upgrade path.

    Am I misunderstanding the way these things work? I don't want to buy a panel that's 'HD Ready' now, but regret my decision again in another year or two.

    Thanks for any help and explanations.
     
  2. AML

    AML
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    You are partly right. If makers give us their best panels right away, then they will have nothing left to sell in the future. I think that its best to wait for a 1080p panel that has all the right conections and is the right size for you.
    There are also new technologies like SED and OLED coming so it might be best to wait for those and see.

    Since neither the Xbox or PS3 are even out yet, never mind Blu Ray and HD DVD, I dont think its such an unbearable thing to wait for another year or so. By then we will have much more choice.

    1080p should be the ultimate standard for current gen HD.

    After that there is UHDTV, but thats at least 20 years away!
     
  3. mitor

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    Yeah, I partly agree with you (as much as someone with three HD sets can :) )

    for those of us eagerly awaiting the 360 in two months time the wait would be harder.


    I don't think that manufacturers are specifically holding back 1080p screens, they are a lot harder to fabricate than 720p native screens, not only that but who would pay the premium at the moment? I can't see that the current 1080p models will be fly'ing off the shelves when there is no content in 1080p

    It seems unlikely that PS3 developers will be targeting 1080p as their chosen resolution, whilst the machine can certainly output this over HDMI, the loss of framerate for the game compared to the number of people who could benefit will see this left till the next-next gen I suspect.

    HD-DVD and BLU-RAY won't be up to the sort of capacties needed for 1080p 2 hour films for some time

    And broadcasters are way off.


    So what I'm saying (really slowly) is that I agree with you :)

    until you have something to watch in 720p there is little impetus to buy a HD screen, and the same goes for 1080p material
     
  4. Nickiniquity

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    There was a good article in last months 'TV Technology Europe' (slightly sad pro-broadcast mag I get sent at work) where the EBU discussed their take on 1080p v. 720p. They concluded that 1080p wasn't worth the bother at typical screen sizes and viewing distances in the average home. (but since when has owning a massive front projector been average!!) I'll see if I can scan it in and post somewhere.
     
  5. richard plumb

    richard plumb
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    I don't know the resolution of the 61" HD plasma on display in Currys, but if its 720p its blooming amazing!

    I don't think its manufacturers deliberately holding back on sets. People don't buy sets on a whim, they need to last 5+ years - manufacturers know people's buying cycles.

    More likely 1080p panels are lower yield and therefore higher price, and are just starting to come through the factories. That, combined with very limited specifications for broadcast 1080p means there won't be a big push just yet.

    I think manufacturers would have slapped HDMI ports on their TVs if they'd known in advance. its a relatively small cost compared to the panels themselves.

    No conspiracy, its just a fast moving time at the mo, and some of us get caught out.
     
  6. HSC

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    hmmmm....

    if you look here
    http://www.microsoft.com/windows/windowsmedia/content_provider/film/ContentShowcase.aspx

    and take a MPEG2 1080p clip (inc DD5.1 sound) encoded at a decent bitrate. lets say the Alexander trailer.
    1m 53sec clocks in at 123Mb. So for 2 hours that works out at 9840Mb.

    both nextgen formats will use newer encoders such as VC9 or H.264 - so that should lead to decent file sizes too.

    If I am right - that should easily fit onto HD-DVD or Blu-Ray with room to spare.....
     
  7. richard plumb

    richard plumb
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    1080p films won't take up any more space than 1080i video, as I assume they'll use a similar deinterlacing/flagging method from 60i to 24/30p

    I'd expect bluray movies to be 1080p as standard from the beginning
     
  8. Nickiniquity

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    I'm not sure that is strictly true. An interlaced 1080i source will require half the bandwidth of a progressive 1080p source to store. (its the main reason that SD analogue broadcast TV is interlaced) If the uncompressed video of the film is derived from a telecine, the 1080p encoder should be able to spot that source is 24fps and make significant coding gains. The end result would still be larger than for 1080i though.

    What about if the source is 1080p from a HD production (i.e. shot on 1080p cameras)...

    Here's that interesting 720p v. 1080p article I was on about earlier:
    Page1
    Page2
    Page3
     
  9. NicolasB

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    You assume wrong. 1080p means 50 or 60 full progressive frames per second, not 24/25/30.
     
  10. Stephen Neal

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    Though the OP was talking about 1080p FILMS not all 1080p sources.

    Unless film production moves from 24p/25p to 48p/50p/60p then there could be an assumption that 1080p film material is recorded and encoded as 24p with the frame replication to create 48/50/60p done on replay, rather than record and encode multiple copies of identical frames?

    The keyword in the original post for me was FILM.
     
  11. Stephen Neal

    Stephen Neal
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    Yes - but 1080p VIDEO will take more bandwith - so for sports, entertainment, news etc. which benefits from the higher motion rendition of 50/60 frames per second over 24/25 frames per second WILL require greater bandwith.
     
  12. Stephen Neal

    Stephen Neal
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    Yep - EBU research seems to indicate the following results :

    Screens less than 28" display little improvement for viewers at average viewing distances when comparing 576/50i with 720/50p - so HD for screens smaller than 28" is not a major issue (unless you are watching at a smaller distance)

    Screens less than 50" display little improvement when comparing 720/50p with 1080/50p, at average viewing distances. Any improvement offered by 1080p becomes more apparent at screen sizes larger than 50".

    All of this is based on average viewing distance etc. and is not definitive- but it does inform the EBU's (or part of it) suggestion that 720/50p may be a better first HD standard than 1080/50i - especially as 1080/50i is less compressible so requires higher data rates, for little perceived benefit at screen sizes smaller than 50" - which are the bulk of displays likely to be sold?
     
  13. Syphon

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    I've been lusting for a LCD tv for some while, but have been holding back for 1080 to become mainstream. Maybe there is no point now if the above is true? Not going to be getting bigger than 32" and the viewing distance isn't massive.
     
  14. doctorjuggles

    doctorjuggles
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    Thanks for the info, Nickiniquity, excellent stuff. Kinda answers my question in itself, really.

    With all this in mind, how does 720p work when you consider the fact that many of today's plasmas/LCDs come with a native 768 resolution? Surely it has to scale? I thought one of the best things about the digital revolution was the fact that the information could be fed from one point to another, without the need for tampering and electronic witchcraft.

    Now I realise that the scaling technologies are pretty good on most high-end Hi-Def systems, but I'm very surprised that 768 is more prevelant than 720 lines of resolution on plasmas, considering 720 is one of the standards of HD.
     
  15. kenji-san

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    as i understand it, 768 scanlines are for 50hz countries, like europe, and 720 for 60hz.
    therefor 768 scanlines ensures compatibility for both regions.
    i may be wrong though.
     
  16. Quickbeam

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    I wouldn't read too much into the EBU's test results.

    If I remember rightly the BBC compared 720p source material to 1080i, not 1080p, and the screens they were using for the tests had a resolution of 1366 x 768p. Who knows whether the 1080i stuff was even being deinterlaced properly. I'm not sure that any *proper* tests of 1080p vs 720p have ever been carried out (using genuine 1080p sources and native 1080p and 720p screens).
     
  17. doctorjuggles

    doctorjuggles
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    Damn you and your spanner in my works, Quickbeam! :rotfl:
     
  18. Kalos Geros

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    WRONG! HD is 1280*720 and 1920*1080 everywhere, only refresh rates vary...I am also puzzled at the 768 px screen implementation since scaling is required...1080 is the target resolution and one day I believe all displays and sources will be 1080...and then they will introduce hologram... :devil:
     
  19. StooMonster

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    Yes you are wrong.

    768 rows is a computer monitor legacy. You'll also note that widescreen computer monitors are 16:10 ratio not 16:9 of HD (e.g. 1280x768 or 1920x1200)

    StooMonster
     
  20. kenji-san

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    :oops:
    yeah, of course. think i temporarily spaced out there.. :)
     
  21. MikeK

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    I am also puzzled at the 768 px screen implementation since scaling is required

    Perhaps, but they would always have the option of thin black bars all round (if it was a 1366x768 screen) to display 1280x720 - you don't necessarily HAVE to scale the image.
    Another reason that they may choose to use an "odd" number of vertical pixels is pixel aspect ratio - they may not necessarily be square. In order to get the highest aperture ratio from the panel (and this is an issue), it may be necessary to use non-square pixels. For an LCD panel, remember that when displaying a primary colour, such as red, you may actually only be lighting up less than a quarter of the screen's surface area! Any way to increase aperture ratio has to be considered.
    Using non-square pixels may not be ideal - but you may be running into other technical limitations, and then trading off one limitation against another!
    If a 16:9 aspect ratio display has 1280x768 pixels, then they cannot be square!

    You'll also note that widescreen computer monitors are 16:10 ratio not 16:9 of HD (e.g. 1280x768 or 1920x1200)

    1280x768 is not 16:10 (not on a square pixel display anyway) :) :) - it's 15:9
     
  22. cooperda

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    I read a mag talking about future Sky HD - it seems as though different channels - providers - will make different choices. The acticle came down to 720p being slightly better for fast movement ie. football, racing or motor sports and 1080i better for documentary, gardening and nature with having slightly more detail (pixel count)
    Broadcasts are likely, it said, to use 1080p (50 or 60 Mhz) in house to give some headroom for any future developments.

    Cheers, Dave C.
     
  23. Jimbo73

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    Interesting, I thought it was the other way round. Interlace lends itself better to fast moving subject matter -it looks smooth whereas progressive can look "choppy" or "jerky".
     
  24. Stephen Neal

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    That is the case if you compare 50/field interlaced with 25/frame progressive - as you end up with fewer images per second with the progressive version. However 50/frame progressive offers better quality motion than 50/field interlaced, as with progressive you get the same number of images per second, but they are sharper.

    25p is used as a production system, but not proposed seriously as a broadcast format. 50p and 50i are the two proposed broadcast formats - in 720 line and 1080 line variously (though 1080/50p is the current aim for the future) - and both offer roughly the same motion portrayal.

    In the US 720/60p and 1080/60i are both used for sports programming - and there is no real issue with flicker on the progressive stuff - though there would be if they shot sport 720/24p or 30p!
     
  25. Quickbeam

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    Even if you feed a 1280 x 720 resolution screen with a 720p signal you are not guaranteed 1:1 pixel mapping. The scaling engines on many displays incorporate overscan to prevent unwanted control signals getting into the visible part of the screen (white horizontal lines, blue vertical lines etc). On a plasma or LCD (unlike a CRT) virtually the whole screen is visible, and the overscan has to be simulated by slightly cropping and zooming the image.
     
  26. StooMonster

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    :oops: wrong one as example!

    Should've used my lovely Apple 30" LCD 2560x1600 pixel example instead. ;)

    StooMonster
     
  27. Kalos Geros

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    But surely I should be guaranteed 1:1 at 1280x720 via HDMI since HD-DVD or whatever format will be adopted doesn't contain control signals and is purely digital with pixel-to-pixel matching...I also don't see HDTV broadcasts needing analog control signals since it is only acceptable that they be digital...

    On the other subject, 1080/50p is the target to aim for but there is currently no bandwidth as I understabd that can carry 1080p with sufficient quality and economical reason...where higher resolution is required with smooth motion we shall see 1080/50i (should be sports) or 720/50p for other content since these should be similar in data rate...interlace in itself doen't mean smoother motion, it was just the only way to squeeze 50 or 60 discreet motion frames per second into availabe broadcast bandwidth, the same problem we now have with 1080/50p...Plasma will need to deinterlace the 1080/50i into 1080/50p anyway via scaling each field separately or using bob or any other formula to convert interlace to progressive for LCD/plasma displays...
     

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