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HDTV Magazine Columns Archive (March, 2008)

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Politics & PolicyDigital (DTV) TransitionDigital Rights Management (DRM)

HDTV Almanac - Digital TV Converter Complications

By Alfred Poor • Mar 28 2008, 1:00pm

Earlier this week, a US company named Microtune sent a letter to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA). The NTIA is the federal agency in charge of the program to provide rebates for the coverters that will allow analog televisions to receive digital broadcasts. (You can read more about the rebate program in an [...]

Cable HDTV

HDTV Almanac - Movie Clips on Facebook

By Alfred Poor • Mar 27 2008, 1:00pm

As the Rainman might say, “there are thousands and thousands of them.” At a time when most of the copyright holders for music, movie, and video content are going bananas trying desperately to lock up their products and prosecute anyone who misappropriates their product, Paramount is taking a different approach. The company is embracing the [...]

General Interest

HDTV Almanac - Playing “The HDTV Price is Right”

By Alfred Poor • Mar 26 2008, 1:00pm

You walk into a big box store like Best Buy and see a price posted on an HDTV. Or you scan through their sales circular and see prices for specific models. That’s the price you’ll pay, right?
Maybe not. According to a report in the New York Times on Sunday, a growing number of United States [...]

Politics & PolicyDigital (DTV) Transition

HDTV Almanac - FCC Seeks More Fines

By Alfred Poor • Mar 25 2008, 1:00pm

Last year, federal law made it illegal to manufacture or import television devices in this country that contained analog tuners unless they also had digital tuners. Manufacturers and retailers were allowed to sell existing inventory of analog-only devices, but only if they were clearly labeled about this limitation. Apparently, not all the retailers were diligent [...]

Satellite HDTVService & RepairHD DVD

HDTV Almanac - Englewood, We Have a Problem

By Alfred Poor • Mar 24 2008, 1:00pm

DISH Network (of Englewood, Colorado) is locked in a struggle with DirecTV and other television subscription services to attract and retain customers. And one of the key competitive features is HD channel coverage. DirecTV has a lead on this score, but a new satellite launched by DISH Network was intended to help the service [...]

Digital (DTV) TransitionDigital Rights Management (DRM)BroadcastPolitics & Policy

HDTV Almanac - Why We’re Switching to Digital TV

By Alfred Poor • Mar 21 2008, 1:00pm

In case you were wondering about why analog televisions broadcasts are scheduled to end next February, I can give you nearly 20 billion reasons. By switching to digital broadcasts, large segments of the radio frequency spectrum will be freed up for other uses. And on Tuesday, the FCC concluded auctions that sold off the licenses [...]

General Interest

HDTV Almanac - Propeller Headed: Polarized LEDs

By Alfred Poor • Mar 20 2008, 1:00pm

Okay, today’s item is not a little technical; it’s a lot technical. But as always, I’ll not only tell you the story, but also what it means. So hang in with me on this one….
At the end of last month, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute issued a press release about Martin Schubert, a doctoral student in engineering, [...]

HD DVDBlu-ray

HDTV Almanac - R.I.P. HD DVD

By Alfred Poor • Mar 19 2008, 1:00pm

Were you like me, and you purchased an HD DVD player at the end of last year? The chances are good that you may be suffering from a bit of buyer’s remorse at this point, now that Blu-ray has carried the day (for reasons that I’ve covered in previous entries). The Fed has bailed out [...]

Technology

Newbie's Corner - Audio and Video Cables

By The HT Guys • Mar 18 2008, 4:58pm

So you want to buy a brand new HDTV, A/V Receiver, Blu Ray player and some of you have an old VCR that you want to incorporate into your home theater experience. There is something that you probably didn't even think about, much less budget for, and that's how you are going to tie it all together. This is the job of the cable. There are many kinds of cables out there all with different uses. Today's column will discuss the various kinds of AV cables on the market and what they are used for.

Before we get started, we want to talk a bit about cost...

PC & Laptop TechnologyOLED HDTVs

HDTV Almanac - OLEDs: Still moving ahead

By Alfred Poor • Mar 18 2008, 1:00pm

It seems to me that the main achievement of the tiny Sony XEL-1 is to leave us wanting more: more resolution, more screen, and a lot more for our money. Many companies are working hard to deliver more from OLED technology, which as the Sony TV has demonstrated, can deliver an impossibly thin and light [...]

Blu-rayHD DVDInternet HD Video

HDTV Almanac - Best Buy Offers Blu-Ray for $300

By Alfred Poor • Mar 17 2008, 1:00pm

One of the fears about Blu-ray’s victory in the high definition DVD format war was that without competition, prices would not fall or could even rise. The fact that older Blu-ray players don’t have the capabilities of current models, and that new models with Internet support won’t be out until next fall (at the [...]

LCD HDTVs

HDTV Almanac - Truth Patrol: Not All RP Is LCD

By Alfred Poor • Mar 14 2008, 2:33pm

NBC 13 in Birmingham, Alabama, certainly had its heart in the right place when it published “The In’s And Out’s Of HDTV” on its Web site for its viewers, but it would have been better if they got their facts straight before they tried to explain these topics. The story has a number of glaring [...]

HD DVDInternet HD Video

HDTV Almanac - YouTube on TiVo

By Alfred Poor • Mar 13 2008, 1:00pm

Yesterday, TiVo announced plans that will let subscribers access YouTube content directly through a TiVo DVR. To take advantage of this feature when it becomes available later this year, you will need a Series3 DVR (which includes the new TiVo HD) and a broadband Internet connection. You will be able to search and watch the [...]

3D HDTVPC & Laptop TechnologyDigital (DTV) TransitionDigital Rights Management (DRM)

HDTV Almanac - More 3D on the Way

By Alfred Poor • Mar 12 2008, 1:00pm

According to an Associated Press report, four major Hollywood studios have reached agreements with Access Integrated Technologies to help finance the conversion of up to 10,000 more movie theater screens to digital technology capable of projecting 3D images. The deal is worth up to $700 million. Hollywood has been enticed by digital technology for years, [...]

Cable HDTV

HDTV Almanac - Monster Promotes “Entry-Level” Cables

By Alfred Poor • Mar 11 2008, 2:00pm

Last week, Monster Cable announced plans to expand the distribution of their lower-priced HDMI cables. Monster is known for its high quality cables available at many consumer electronic retailers, which sell for breath-taking prices. The next step down in price usually takes the buyer to a different brand. Monster intends to capture more of those [...]

Blu-rayHD DVDEvents & Tradeshows

HDTV Almanac - More Blu-ray Fallout

By Alfred Poor • Mar 10 2008, 2:00pm

Samsung has announced cancellation of its plans to build its new dual format HD DVD/Blu-ray player, the BD-UP5500 that was announced at CES 2008. Apparently, the company will continue to sell the BD-UP5000 hybrid player that was supposed to be replaced by the new model. The older set is available on Amazon for under [...]

Plasma HDTVs

HDTV Almanac - Pioneer To End Plasma Production

By Alfred Poor • Mar 7 2008, 2:00pm

It’s official. Pioneer confirmed the rumors today and announced that the company will cease production of plasma panels. Pioneer was one of the few remaining plasma manufacturers, along with the giant Matsushita (parent of Panasonic). Pioneer had already announced plans for a joint venture with Sharp in order to get a supply of panels for [...]

BroadcastCable HDTV

Ed's View - HDTV Quality Reduction - A Time for Action

By Ed Milbourn • Mar 6 2008, 5:58pm

In 1969 Japan's National Broadcast Network (NHK) started research on an advanced television system to bring truly high definition television to the public. Their goal for such an endeavor was to "appeal to a higher level of psychological sensation and emotion by transmitting highly intellectual information with detailed characters and graphics." 1

That highly eclectic goal for HDTV remained through its complex evolution to the US system commercialized in 1996. Unfortunately, that goal is being severely and continuously...

General Interest

HDTV Almanac - eWaste: HP Makes a Dent

By Alfred Poor • Mar 6 2008, 2:00pm

Last month, HP announced that it had recycled almost 250 million pounds of electronics hardware and related consumables in 2007. According to the company’s press release, this was equivalent to two Titanics. HP has already recycled more than 1 billion pounds of electronics, and has now set a goal of 2 billion pounds by 2010. [...]

General Interest

HDTV Almanac - End of an Era: Sony Trinitron

By Alfred Poor • Mar 5 2008, 2:00pm

Traditional picture tube televisions have the three electron guns arranged in a triangle. The resulting geometry requires a screen that is curved both horizontally and vertically. 40 years ago, Sony engineers realized that you could put the three guns in a line, and use vertical stripes of phosphors instead of circular dots. And this resulted [...]

LCD HDTVs

HDTV Almanac - Changing Partners

By Alfred Poor • Mar 4 2008, 2:00pm

Sony is one of the largest flat panel HDTV companies in the world, but they don’t make the LCD panels used in these sets. They get many of their panels from a Korean company called S-LCD, which is a 50/50 joint venture with Samsung that was created in 2004. (Samsung actually owns 50% plus one [...]

Broadcast

HDTV Almanac - Border Wars

By Alfred Poor • Mar 3 2008, 2:00pm

For most of us, the cut-off of analog over-the-air television broadcasts is a fairly cut-and-dried issue. On February 17, 2009, we’ll stop getting any analog broadcast signals. But what happens for United States residents who happen to live near the border with Canada or Mexico? TVTechnology.com has provided a good overview of the situation. As [...]