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By Alfred Poor • Feb 27 2007, 2:00pm
At a press conference yesterday, Sony announced plans to release an entry-level Blu-ray high-definition DVD player with a $599 list price early this summer.
A senior VP also predicted that a Blu-ray player will be selling for less than $500 for this year’s winter holiday buying season, according to a variety of sources.
Sony also [...]
By Alfred Poor • Feb 26 2007, 2:00pm
You subscribe to a cable service.
You expect that you’ll get your local television stations as part of that service.
If you are paying extra for digital cable with HDTV service, you might expect to get the local HDTV broadcasts as well.
And you might well be wrong.
As we saw in the days leading [...]
By Alfred Poor • Feb 23 2007, 2:00pm
Word broke last week that someone had found a way to unlock the AACS digital rights management (which is another way of saying “copy protection”) for the new high definition blue laser DVDs.
These discs are “locked” using a key that is stored on the DVD.
Someone discovered a way to find the key, which [...]
By Alfred Poor • Feb 22 2007, 2:00pm
Q: New DVD players offer up-conversion of a standard DVD signal.
How is this accomplished, and is this feature worthwhile?
John Lee, Hawaii
A: Standard DVDs produce a 480i signal (or 480p if it’s a progressive scan player).
The new “upconvert” devices take the roughly 850 by 480 pixel image and scale it up to 720p [...]
By Alfred Poor • Feb 21 2007, 2:00pm
Google’s YouTube has lost another possible partner.
Viacom announced yesterday that efforts to reach a revenue-sharing agreement with YouTube have failed, and so the company is turning to Joost – formerly the Venice Project — to host online clips from Viacom’s programming.
If you’re not familiar with Viacom, you’ll probably recognize the names of its [...]
By Alfred Poor • Feb 20 2007, 2:00pm
Many readers of the HDTV Almanac are already familiar with “Professor Poor’s Weekly Price Intelligence Report“: the fastest and easiest way to find all the advertised prices for HDTVs from the major national retailers.
The news is that we have developed a new way to track all these prices, which will make the report more [...]
By Alfred Poor • Feb 19 2007, 2:00pm
As the personal computer market gets more constricted and margins get thinner, it should come as no surprise that information technology (IT) companies are looking more and more at consumer electronics (CE) as a way to branch out and pursue the continued growth that corporations seem to equate with success.
Two pieces of news from [...]
By Alfred Poor • Feb 16 2007, 2:00pm
Where will you be when the analog broadcasts of television in the U.S.
stop? In two years from this weekend, the nation’s TV broadcasts of analog signals will go dark.
The FCC has come to the realization that most Americans are unaware of this scheduled event, and don’t understand its significance.
Organizations such as the [...]
By Alfred Poor • Feb 15 2007, 2:00pm
The New York Times published a story earlier this week with the headline “The No-Name Brand Behind the Latest Flat-Panel Price War”.
The story makes the case that the Olevia brand of LCD HDTVs made by Syntax-Brillian were responsible for the incredibly low prices seen during last year’s holiday shopping season.
The article cites Circuit [...]
By Alfred Poor • Feb 14 2007, 2:00pm
An article in this week’s Newsweek explores the growing demand for antennas for over the air — OTA — reception of digital television signals from local broadcast stations.
A number of factors could be in play behind this growing interest.
Certainly, the fact that some viewers were unable to get the SuperBowl in HD over [...]
By Alfred Poor • Feb 13 2007, 2:00pm
Does the SuperBowl sell HDTVs? I haven’t seen sales figures for January yet and February’s only half over, but it’s pretty clear from a number of metrics that I track that interest has fallen way off since February 4th.
We’re entering the dark time for HDTV sales — aside from a possible bump from Chinese [...]
By Alfred Poor • Feb 12 2007, 2:00pm
Corning owns the lion’s share of the LCD glass market worldwide, and the company is gearing up for growth.
In preparation for their annual investor meeting on Friday, the company announced that it expects the demand for LCD glass to grow at a compound annual rate of 30 percent for the next two years.
By Alfred Poor • Feb 9 2007, 2:00pm
I realize that the content on your site is available for free, but I must register my displeasure with all the coverage of IPTV.
It is still in its infancy and tends to require special access or software or permission.
I don’t think that a site that is named HDTVprofessor should spend so much time [...]
By Alfred Poor • Feb 8 2007, 2:00pm
As I’ve pointed out before, Radio Shack has a problem with its new foray into becoming an HDTV dealer; its stores are small.
As a result, they don’t have room for large screens, and only stock models up to about 37″.
And that’s not nearly large enough for most American living rooms.
So the company [...]
By Alfred Poor • Feb 7 2007, 2:00pm
DRM stands for “copy protection” and refers to the various technologies that are used to deter the illegal copying and use of copyrighted material such as music, movies, and video.
The problem is that DRM also prevents legitimate use of this material.
Yesterday, Steve Jobs of Apple came out with a strong position against DRM [...]
By Alfred Poor • Feb 6 2007, 2:00pm
Remember the tough old days when you used to have to drive all the way to Wal-Mart to buy a movie? (The average driving distance for the average American has to be under 15 miles, given the way Wal-Marts seem to be everywhere these days.) Thank goodness that if you want to buy a movie [...]
By Alfred Poor • Feb 5 2007, 2:00pm
Perhaps you caught the two quick ads last night on the SuperBowl; today is the official launch of Bud.TV, a new Web video site developed by Budweiser.
This free site boasts a variety of original content developed just for this new Internet “channel”.
A number of current and former Saturday Night Live members are among [...]
By Alfred Poor • Feb 2 2007, 2:00pm
I have noticed that a lot of people have come to the Almanac as a result of using search engines to find information about 32″ LCD HDTVs.
(Yes, I’ve got a nifty new tool that tells me all sorts of things about how people find the Almanac, and what they read when they get here; [...]
By Alfred Poor • Feb 1 2007, 2:00pm
I have noticed that a large number of people have come to the HDTV Almanac as part of online searches for information about HDTV contrast ratios.
I go into the subject in some detail in Professor Poor’s Guide to Buying HDTV, but here’s the quick overview.
Contrast ratio is probably the single most important performance factor [...]