Originally Posted by AJSJones
You guys obviously weren't around when broadcast HD was being introduced.
Got my first HDTV in 1998 - a Zenith Pro 900 FPTV with a Stewart 144" 16x9 screen
Had to stay up late to watch Jay Leno in HD because that was about it when HDTV started becoming available. That and the endless "trailer" from HBO months later (NYC).
The "fight" over 720p60 and 1080i60 was fought and, well, drawn. The number of pixels per second (~true information content) for the two formats is not greatly different and the perceived vertical resolution of the interlaced 1080 was no better than the non-interlaced 720. The "1920" part of the 1920x1080 is also often compromised either during capture or during compression along the chain so that the 1920 is often down to <1440 etc. Sports networks (and some others) chose 720p for its fast motion benefit.
Seeing as how 720P is only used for broadcast HD it has always had a leg up on 1080i - due to it's superior refresh rate it is perfect for sports. Resolution is not the be all to end all when comparing HD formats - until you get to 1080x60P
The "Full HD" moniker is marketing from the 1080 boys to try to eliminate the "stigma" of interlacing and the need for deinterlacing etc so they say "Full" 1080p but neglect to mention that it's actually 1080p30 vs 720p60 - smoke and mirrors. If I got 720p60 for each eye and no motion/interlace and fewer compression artifacts, I'd be very happy.
Actually it was used by the LCD manufacturers who had poured R + D into that display tech (as opposed to PDP) and were successful in manufacturing 1080P HDTVs for affordable prices, while over on the PDP side, only the super expensive Pioneer PDP was 1080P. All others were 720P or 768P