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Can someone explain HD-Lite to me?  

post #1 of 71
Thread Starter 
Sorry if this is an elementary question. I've searched the forums and found many references, but no explanations.

I'm trying to pick my HD provider and I want to know if I should be worried about this with DTV.

Thanks in advance.
post #2 of 71
There is a formal definition, but it's basically intentional degradation of a channel's distribution feed by lowering resolution and/or bit rate to conserve bandwidth. Providers do this so they can add more channels.

From my observations of general forum opinions - the order of best to worst PQ:

Off-The-Air (OTA)
FiOS
Cable
Dish Network
DirecTV

Note that cable and OTA quality will vary from area to area. Some cable providers are "rate shaping".
post #3 of 71
George Gilder, who's a well known technological prognosticator, first started claiming 7 to 10 years back that Sateillite providers would eventually hit the wall on bandwidth and would ultimately be at a major capacity disadvantagerelative to terrestrial based cable systems

The emergence of (so far) selective Hd-LITE on the SATS is one of the first signs that the Satellites are now starting to hit these capacity walls. Apparently there are a very limited number of parking slots in outer space for ku-band type SATs - and no technological current, expected, or probable technological fix can correct this innate disadvantage relative to cable based systems over the longer term
post #4 of 71
I thought it referred to stations sending out 1280x1080 instead of 1920x1080.
post #5 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by JET99
{snips} ... and no technological current, expected, or probable technological fix can correct this innate disadvantage relative to cable based systems over the longer term
Ka? DVB-S2? MPEG4? Spaceway 1,2? D10, D11? Ring any bells? :rolleyes:
post #6 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kram Sacul
I thought it referred to stations sending out 1280x1080 instead of 1920x1080.
It is if the original's 1920x1080 interlaced is reduced to 1280x1080 interlaced.
post #7 of 71
I was in my local BB tonight where they have a direct TV feed going straight into a Sony 60" Sxrd. Everything on the HD channels was unbelievably soft. As bad HD PQ as I have ever seen.
post #8 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by Star56
I was in my local BB tonight where they have a direct TV feed going straight into a Sony 60" Sxrd. Everything on the HD channels was unbelievably soft. As bad HD PQ as I have ever seen.
More than one BB I've been to has had their HD feed connected to their demo TVs via an RCA video cable (yep, just feeding SD over a cr*ppy video distribution system.)

When it comes to demos, I've seen few retailers that care less than BB; I suspect they realize most people that come there already know what they want and are shopping based on price.
post #9 of 71
I think I like the term "faux HD" rather than HD-Lite. But of course, beer drives everything in America!
post #10 of 71
there used to be a guy named gary (god among HD-men), around here who would be more than happy to give you the lowdown.
post #11 of 71
HD-LITE=CRAPPY PQ. Very simple.

Mike :(
post #12 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Mike
HD-LITE=CRAPPY PQ. Very simple.

Mike :(
No crappy PQ is standard analog broadcast. The so-called HD-Lite is
better then DVD's but not quiite as good as HD.
post #13 of 71
TVOD gave the most accurate answer, IMO...
post #14 of 71
Official AVS Definition
Quote:
HD Lite (noun) : A 19.3mbps 1280x720p or 1920x1080i HDTV source, transmitted with either a lower bitrate, a lower resolution, or both. This is sometimes done by satellite or cable providers to save bandwidth, and by over-the-air broadcasters when multicasting. Typically the term is used when the reduced bitrate and/or resolution results in a noticeable degradation in picture quality.
post #15 of 71
A noun, they say. I don't think so. It is a made up moniker with no basis in meaning.
post #16 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken H
Official AVS Definition
If that's the definition, then most of the HD one can get these days is HD-lite?
post #17 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by ReplayJanitor
If that's the definition, then most of the HD one can get these days is HD-lite?
Yes, at least on D*. Maybe we will get REAL HD on Blu-ray or HD-DVD.

Mike
post #18 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by jambroni
A noun, they say. I don't think so. It is a made up moniker with no basis in meaning.
You are wrong, my friend. This was discussed extensively last June, and the forum reached a consensus. Its part of the AVS Glossary.
post #19 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by ReplayJanitor
If that's the definition, then most of the HD one can get these days is HD-lite?
Nope.

There are a number of OTA stations that do not multicast, some cable providers pass HD unmolested (like Comcast), and some of Dish Network's HD is also unmolested.
post #20 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by jambroni
A noun, they say. I don't think so. It is a made up moniker with no basis in meaning.
Not to break out my Brief English Handbook on you :o , but "HD-Lite" is indeed a noun, a compound noun actually. These are composed of more than one word, in this case three, high-definition-lite ("lite" being slang).
post #21 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken H
Official AVS Definition
Quote:
HD Lite (noun) : A 19.3mbps 1280x720p or 1920x1080i HDTV source, transmitted with either a lower bitrate, a lower resolution, or both. This is sometimes done by satellite or cable providers to save bandwidth, and by over-the-air broadcasters when multicasting. Typically the term is used when the reduced bitrate and/or resolution results in a noticeable degradation in picture quality.
Thanks. I should have referred to the official AVS definition before responding. I was close, so I guess mine was HD-Lite Definition-Lite. Next question would be what is the definition of "noticeable degradation"? What is the threshold?
post #22 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by TVOD
Thanks. I should have referred to the official AVS definition before responding. I was close, so I guess mine was HD-Lite Definition-Lite. Next question would be what is the definition of "noticeable degradation"? What is the threshold?
Please, no apology is necessary. If one didn't exist, yours would be fine.
post #23 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken H
You are wrong, my friend. This was discussed extensively last June, and the forum reached a consensus. Its part of the AVS Glossary.
I realize that people reached a consensus, but I'm disappointed to see that by that definition HBO-HD and SHO-HD are not HD-Lite (since they don't start at 19.3Mbps).

--Darin
post #24 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by TVOD
Next question would be what is the definition of "noticeable degradation"? What is the threshold?
It's in the eyes of the beholder.

Though, some around here seem to pull their degradation thresholds from another orifice :p
post #25 of 71
In some ways, everything *we* see is HD-lite.

Those who work in the industry who get to see 45mbit/sec+ source feeds say it is way better than the < 20mbit/sec feeds the consumer gets.
post #26 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by darinp2
I realize that people reached a consensus, but I'm disappointed to see that by that definition HBO-HD and SHO-HD are not HD-Lite (since they don't start at 19.3Mbps).

--Darin
I think the original intent was to describe degradation caused by a provider. If a station's distribution was at 40Mb to the providers, and one encoded it to 19Mb while a second encoded it to 17Mb, would the latter be HD-Lite?
post #27 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by TVOD
I think the original intent was to describe degradation caused by a provider. If a station's distribution was at 40Mb to the providers, and one encoded it to 19Mb while a second encoded it to 17Mb, would the latter be HD-Lite?
I think it would be to some extent (some Lite is Liter than other Lite :)), and I understand the intent. I think that HBO-HD that is supposed to be something like 14.4Mbps and instead is limited to about 9Mbps is HD-Lite and I think just about everybody here would agree with that, but according to that definition it isn't. I know that is getting technical, but that is one problem with making definitions. Note that I haven't heard anything about HBO-HD upping the rate they should be shown at to 19.3Mbps and if I missed that then it would qualify.

--Darin
post #28 of 71
The forum definition is a good one...

If you want to SEE what HD-Lite is just find someone that can show you Discovery HD from Comcast vs Discovery HD from DirecTV. If the display you compare them on is larger than 27" it should be obvious what HD-Lite is.

By-the-way the audio-sync problem you see will be Discovery HD's problem. For some reason they can't figure out how to get the video in-sync with the audio for more than a couple of hours at a time.
post #29 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by HDTVChallenged
Ka? DVB-S2? MPEG4? Spaceway 1,2? D10, D11? Ring any bells? :rolleyes:
we can just pretend the satellite companies are just playing around with HD Lite for kicks
post #30 of 71
Quote:
Originally Posted by JET99
we can just pretend the satellite companies are just playing around with HD Lite for kicks
LOL ... Yeah I'm sure they (at least D*) are spending mega-millions on new satellites, encoders and launch vehicles "just for kicks" too. :D

The jury is still out ... :)
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