Originally Posted by htwaits
Analog standard definition signals have a lot of errors in them. They always have, but due to small screen TVs with CRT technology, the errors were not so noticeable.
Also a standard definition signal has less information than either 720p or 1080i signals.
If you receive your SD signal in a digital form there are fewer errors, but your TV still has to deal with the fact that there isn't enough information in the signal. Either your TV, DVD player, or STB (for cable or satellite) must guess using the 480i information so it can generate additional pixels to match your TV's native resolution.
In the case of analog SD the "guessing" is based on errors in the source. That means the image gets worse than it was before conversion. There are fewer errors in a digital SD signal so the conversion looks better.
The last step makes "bad" signals look even worse. They are enlarged onto screens that range between 46" and 73". The combination of more accurate technology, having to guess about missing data, and projection make SD on a HD TV set look anywhere from OK to awful.
There can be several reasons that your HD picture quality doesn't look as good as you expected. Compression by your provider, a weak signal delivered to your house, a bad setup in your STB or TV, a defective STB, a defective TV, and/or defective cables.
It's complicated, but if you take things one at a time it's possible to figure out what is wrong.
htwaits, that is information I've actually been curious about for awhile and I thank you for your response and savedslave for asking the question.
I very much need an opinion from those of you on this thread as I've been laboring over this decision for awhile.
I would very much like to get the hl-s6187/88.
I have a Sony SAT T-60 combo receiver/tivo for Directv. I will upgrade my receiver to HD at some point, however, not just yet. My satellite signal, at best, across the board, probably averages about 80% signal strength. I will be doing gaming on this set (xbox 360) but, otherwise, I'll mostly be watching SD and local channels until I get an upgraded receiver. For awhile I will also just be using the 360 as my DVD player.
I am aware that I cannot get the local channels on the Satellite in HD and that I have to use an antenna.
To finally get to my question; am I looking at the wrong TV?
I've been reasearching this TVs for almost a year now and I've been looking at the Samsungs since the HL-Rs last year. My friends are tired of hearing me talk about it. I currently have a 36" Sony WEGA from '99, but, obviously, it is not HD. I'm not sure I want to get HD, just to game and watch 20 or so channels, that may not be my favorites, while everything else I look at might be garbage. If the SD were at least, passable, this decision would be a no brainer. However, that's not what I've been reading.
If memory serves me correctly I believe the avsforum podcast mentioned how bad SD looks on this TV. Is there something I could do, or add, to improve the SD picture or will the SD images just be better on an HD-DVR?
I'm sorry, I'm just rambling now, but any input would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you in advance for your time.