Is broadcast HD, 1080i or 1080p?


Active Member
Just out of interest and curiosity, what standard of HD do the broadcasters throw at us via the 3 platforms SKY, Freesat and Freeview?

is it 720 or 1080, i or p, 25 or 50fps?

Also is HD freeview as good as HD freesat, as SD is much worse on freeview compared with Sky and freesat


Active Member
Not deffo sure but I believe most HD channels use 720p with exception of a lot of bbcHD being 1080i (not sure of framerates or bitrates for any of these all I know is for some of them esp. ITVHD the bitrates are crap and blocky as hell for complex and fast moving stuff, Unless it's my skybox???)

BBC - BBC HD - FAQs I'm sure others can throw a bit more light on this than myself as I'm no expert :confused:
Last edited:


Distinguished Member
All UK HD (Sky, Freesat, Freeview) is 1080i 25 frames/50 fields per sec. 720p is allowed, but AFAIK, none has been transmitted so far.

Chris Muriel

Distinguished Member
1080p broadcast is unlikely in the foreseeable future due to the bandwidth (and therefore amount of frequency spectrum) necessary.


Distinguished Member
For '1080i', I believe some channels use a resolution of 1440x1080, instead of the full 1920x1080.

All free and unencrypted channels (except ITV1-HD Granada) are 1080i 50fields/sec 25fps 1440 x 1080. ITV1-HD Granada is 1920 x 1080. CH4-HD and CH5-HD on a sky box (free but encrypted) are 1920 X 1080.

A bitrate commenserate with the content is much more important than horizontal resolution. BBC-HD at 17mbps can look totally stunning

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