Originally Posted by Steve Schauer
16:9 does not mean HD. There are lots of things in the universe that are 1.78 aspect ratio, and they're not all HDTV. Hell my toilet tank lid is 2.25:1 (18" x 8") but it's not HDTV either.
What about the plethora of 16:9 commercials shown on 4:3 shows? Those aren't HD either I don't think.
This is silly I know, but let me tell you a little story. About 15 years ago I worked for a high tech company in Redmond WA, and a strip mall store opened up that sold nothing but CD-ROM software. I think it was called Silver Platters. Can you imagine? No floppy disks allowed. Couldn't talk about 'em even.
Maybe we should rename this forum "TV Programming". Let's get real.
16:9 SD is a broadcast standard in Europe, but has never been in the US. Letterboxed 16:9 material shown on 4:3 is either matted for effect or downconverted from a HD master. Either way the SD format is still 4:3.
This forum is here to discuss programming that is made for the HD format. Shows shot in 16:9 SD for US domestic broadcast are done so for one purpose: for upconversion to HD. While it's a compromise in quality, upconversion from 601 can look pretty good and getting better with newer deinterlacing algorithms. HD DVCPRO, HDV and 16mm are also compromises to the best possible technical quality. Even the Spirit 2 datacine does not achieve full 1080 resolution in telecine mode.
Native HD costs were probably out of the question for this show. Fox could just do the show in SD 4:3, but they decided that they would use SD 16:9 for a full screen presentation to the HD audience. When HD costs decrease the 16:9 SD format compromise will become extinct. That's the present reality of HDTV.
As for CD ROMS, floppy discs, strip malls and toilet tanks, you lost me there.