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Home Theatre High Definition

A Review by: Alphonso Soosay

1080pHD 1080i and 1080p are both High Definition display formats for HDTVs. 1080i and 1080p signals actually contain the same information. Both 1080i and 1080p represent a 1920×1080 pixel resolution (1,920 pixels across the screen by 1,080 pixels down the screen). The difference between 1080i and 1080p is in the way the signal is sent from a source component or displayed on an HDTV screen.

In 1080i each frame of video is sent or displayed in alternative fields. The fields in 1080i are composed of 540 rows of pixels or lines of pixels running from the top to the bottom of the screen, with the odd fields displayed first and the even fields displayed second. Together, both fields create a full frame, made up of all 1,080 pixel rows or lines, every 30th of a second.

In 1080p, each frame of video is sent or displayed progressively. This means that both the odd and even fields (all 1,080 pixel rows or pixel lines) that make up the full frame are displayed together. This results in a smoother looking image, with less motion artefacts and jagged edges.

Differences within 1080p

1080p can also be displayed (Depending on the video processing used) as a 1080p/60 (Most common), 1080p/30, or in 1080p/24 formats.

1080p/60 is essentially the same frame repeated twice every 30th of a second. (Enhanced video frame rate.)

1080p/30 is the same frame displayed once every 30th of a second. (Standard live or recorded video frame rate.)

1080p/24 is the same frame displayed every 24th of a second (Standard motion picture film frame rate.)

In the final analysis, the proof is in the actual viewing, how the image looks to you in the real world with your specific HDTV. Short of having a tech come out and doing actual measurements, or comparing results using different TVs and source components yourself, even if you don’t have a 1080p input capable Television, as long your HDTV has 1080p internal processing, you may still be able to get the benefits of 1080p. The key is in the processing, and, of course, not all HDTVs brands and video processors are created identical, so let your “Eyes” be your evaluator.

Alphonso Soosay

Home Theatre Consultant

2009

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