DBSTalk Forum banner
Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 6 of 6 Posts

· DBSTalk Club Member
Joined
·
251 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'll be getting an HR20 tomorrow (and the dish installed too). I have only a Series 2 DirecTiVo currently with a three-LNB dish. I'm in Erie, but I get Pittsburgh's local channels.

The DirecTV site naturally tells me that the Pittsburgh locals are mapped (CBS, ABC, NBC, and FOX anyway) to the same channels I currently use: 2, 4, 11, and 53. Great. I shouldn't have to change anything or memorize new channel numbers for my local programming.

I do, however, have some questions about how this works...

1) My TV (Sony KDF60XS955 60" rear-projection LCD HDTV) is a 16:9 format TV. I currently watch TV and have the 4:3 default set to "Wide Zoom" - it crops a little top and bottom and stretches to fit. People are a little fatter than normal, but not obscenely round.

Will I simply leave this setting alone? My TV knows when it's getting a 16:9 source (say, from a DVD) and will just play it normally. So, it seems that I can just leave this setting alone and, when I have an HD 16:9 program, it will display it properly, and when not, will use "Wide Zoom" or whatever 4:3 default I've set. Is that correct?

2) I've seen that you can "force" the HR20 to choose a resolution. For example, 1080i or 720p, rather than go with "Native" mode. What are the downsides to doing so? The scaling is pretty good and it, from what I can tell, speeds up changing channels. Yes?

3) Corollary to #2: 720p looks better than 1080i, no? 1080 has less actual lines, of course (540), so if I did choose "one" resolution, wouldn't 720p be the better choice? Why or why not? (My current TV is capable of displaying everything but 1080p).

4) I've also seen people comment about how they've chosen (usually due to a problem recording the HD stream) to record their SD local channels in some instances. As I said, my "locals" are 2, 4, 11, and 53, but D*'s site lists various 3-digit channel #s for "older receivers." These are 944, 945, 946, and 951. Are those the SD signals for the various local channels? Tuning to 944 now with the DTiVo I'm told it doesn't exist.

Thanks in advance for any help you can offer in answering these questions. I wasn't able to find the answers myself on the forum, likely because the possible search terms are vague.
 

· I used to be a rocket scientist
Joined
·
11,448 Posts
Screen size issues are a little confusing at first. All my HD locals transmit a 16x9 image, even SD materials; the locals insert the black bars (pillar box) and the HR20 doesn't stretch or distort that image at all, just passes it on.

Your SD locals will ALSO be listed in the guide along with your new HD/MPEG4 locals. The first listing is usually the channel number + call letters and the second is channel number + an abbreviation. For instance, my local ABC station works this way: 2 WKRN - that's the HD MPEG4 channel; 2 NA2- that's the SD MPEG2 local. Just punching in the channel number on the remote brings me to the MPEG4 channel first. I have to page down to get to the SD channel, or select it directly from the Guide.

Hope this helps a little.
 

· AllStar
Joined
·
59 Posts
iacas said:
4) I've also seen people comment about how they've chosen (usually due to a problem recording the HD stream) to record their SD local channels in some instances. As I said, my "locals" are 2, 4, 11, and 53, but D*'s site lists various 3-digit channel #s for "older receivers." These are 944, 945, 946, and 951. Are those the SD signals for the various local channels? Tuning to 944 now with the DTiVo I'm told it doesn't exist.
As far as recording SD locals, you should have them show as the same channel they would be on a regular TV. The HD channel number can be different (depending if D* caries your local HD channels or if you're forced to use the generic national HD channels).

Hopefully, not having HD locals in certain markets won't be an issue once OTA is activated. :D
 

· The Shadow Knows!
Joined
·
36,634 Posts
iacas said:
3) Corollary to #2: 720p looks better than 1080i, no? 1080 has less actual lines, of course (540), so if I did choose "one" resolution, wouldn't 720p be the better choice? Why or why not? (My current TV is capable of displaying everything but 1080p).

As I understand it, 1080i doesn't have fewer actual lines. In the US, 720p is 1280x720, each frame rendered fully, and 30 frames per second. 1080i is 1920x1080, but each frame is only half rendered (1920x540) but then 1/60sec later, the other half is rendered. You still get 30 fully rendered frames per second.

I would seriously suggest that you try different modes to see what you think looks better. Plasma and LCD TVs do not actually "interlace" the image as a tube TV would, and often times 1080i is quite satisfying.

For me, I prefer 1080i over 720p for a fairly small quality difference visible in HD programming. YMMV.
 

· DBSTalk Club Member
Joined
·
251 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
lamontcranston said:
As I understand it, 1080i doesn't have fewer actual lines.
So you're saying 540 @ 60 FPS is better than 720 @ 30, basically. Gotcha. I suppose I'll probably just try both and see which looks better.
 

· Hall Of Fame
Joined
·
2,463 Posts
lamontcranston said:
As I understand it, 1080i doesn't have fewer actual lines. In the US, 720p is 1280x720, each frame rendered fully, and 30 frames per second. 1080i is 1920x1080, but each frame is only half rendered (1920x540) but then 1/60sec later, the other half is rendered. You still get 30 fully rendered frames per second.
Are you sure about that? According to Wikkipedia,
Some United States broadcasters use 720p60 as their primary high-definition format; others use the 1080i standard.
BTW, the reason for 60 FPS for 720p/480p and 30 FPS for 1080i/480i? US alternating house current runs at 60 Hz (cycles per second). When analog TV was invented, they uesd this convention to synchronize the TV stations and receivers to the same standard. As they were using an interlaced standard, each frame only carried one half of the picture, so to prevent confusion, they were renamed fields and the sum of two fields was named "frame".
 
1 - 6 of 6 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top