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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm about to buy an HDTV and am of two minds on the coming digital standard/encryption issue:


1) Buy a Mitsubishi. The promise module guarantees I at least have a firewire input should it be required in the future for certain broadcasts at full resolution.


Downside: My only choice is a Mits., or the Sony with a built in tuner I don't want.


2) Not only have the standards not been resolved yet, it will be several years before enough sets and other hardware out there have digital inputs/outputs to support any protection schemes by content providers. In sum, although implementation may begin soon, hardware penetration critical mass is several years away so it's all a non-issue for at least five years. Complicated, new technology is often very slow to take hold.


Upside: I can look at the Toshiba 57HX, Pioneer, and Hitachi in addition to the Mits. and not worry so much.


I'd love to hear people's opinions on this.


Thanks.


BTW, hitting spell check highlighted 'firewire' and suggested 'fireweed'. What's fireweed???
 

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It sounds like I have some of the same concerns that you have. I too am ready to buy another HDTV, but several things are holding me back. First, my "theater" is a small 10x12 room in the basement, and my viewing distance is 7'. A set about 50" seems to be the best bet, but most of the smaller sets require bases that have no castors. The smallest Mits that I have seen with rollers is the 55809. That will cost me almost $3,000 with tax and extended warranty. The PQ on HD images is great, but I have not been impressed with what I have seen of SD images on that set, and the "red push" problem is obvious on every set that I have looked at. The Mits 46809 is a nice size, but by the time I buy the $300 base that still doesn't have wheels, I am at about $2,500 with tax & the extended warranty. If you consider that the Mits "Promise" could add $1,000, that makes the Mits an expensive set. I could buy a Toshiba 50H80 with castors for probably $2,500 but I worry about the HDCP issue. I had two early Toshiba 4:3 HDTV's that failed in the first year. I am very gun-shy about the warranty, and will insist on "on-site" service for sure this time. I like the PQ on the Hitachi sets a lot, but there seems to be other issues with that brand that I am not yet comfortable with. The HDCP issue looms large for me too. I will be happy to see thoughts from others in response to your post.
 

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I made the plunge into HDTV in October 1999. I got a Mitsubishi WS-55805 and a Mitsubishi HD-1080 ATSC Receiver. I got the receiver so I could watch Monday Night Football.


Later I added the Echostar 6000 with 8-VSB Module. The HD-1080 became obsolete for me and went into my storage room.


I am getting HDTV now, from DISH Network and from some low power digital stations in Denver.


By the time all these connections and copy protection schemes are worked out, I will probably be ready for a new integrated HDTV set. I may add the Mitsubishi promise module, however it does not have Net Command or DVI inputs.




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Mike aka Hot
 

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Allen, sounds like you haven't yet considered the Panasonic 47". It doesn't need a pedestal stand like the Mits, it has a standard height cabinet. And the picture quality is just as good if not better, for a few hundred dollars less.
 

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The recent change in the priorities by congress may have a delaying effect. I don't think the DMCA or similar bills and actions are anywhere close to the top of the pile anymore.


That's good and bad. It means that in the worst case the legacy users have more time before they are cut off. I say that if the worst case comes to pass. I don't think it ever will.


The bad news is people wanting to buy "standardized" hardware will have to wait.
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Hot:
I made the plunge into HDTV in October 1999. I got a Mitsubishi WS-55805 and a Mitsubishi HD-1080 ATSC Receiver. I got the receiver so I could watch Monday Night Football.
And still waiting for MNF......................................................... ............................................................ ............................................................ ............................................................ ............................................................ ............................................................ ............................................................ ............................................................ ............................................................ ............................................................ ............................................................ ............................................................ ............................................................ ............................................................ ............................................................ ............................................................ ............................................................ ............................................................ ......Still Waiting http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/tongue.gif ............................................................ ............................................................ ................................................... ............................................................ ......

http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/tongue.gif


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endlessly (and mindlessly) in pursuit of clarity and precision
 

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You can alway wait, but you will miss out on all the HD now!


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Meredith (KPHO) SUCKs! Phoenix CBS station with no HD just SD.
 

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In HDTV Magazine they had an interview with an ABC exec. He stated that they were trying to get HD MNF for fall 2002. Their requirement was that they have only one set of cameras and they would all be HD. All production would be in HD but then down converted for analog television.


He also noted that ABC has the Super Bowl that season.


Rick R
 

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rblnr, I totally understand your predicament since I'm in exactly the same situation. I've decided to ignore the whole copy protection mess and buy a TV with analogue-only inputs now for the following reasons:
  • It will take some amount of time before these copy protected inputs to become standardized and fully interoperable. I don't want to wait one or two years (or maybe even longer?) before I can start enjoying pictures with decent quality.
  • TV's continue to drop in price and improve in other ways than their input capability. I have no doubt that I'll want to upgrade my TV in about 5 years or so (I'll probably be able to buy a beautiful plasma TV or maybe a bona fide 1080 x 1920 DLP Front Projector by then). I work with computers, so this is nothing new to me.
  • Even when copy-protected connections become common I'll still be able to do all of the things I can do TODAY.
  • By "voting" for analogue connections with my TV-purchasing dollars, I'm increasing the likelihood that content providers will cater to this market for at least a transition period.


The only real negative I can see is that HDTV recording will probably require digital connections, so when HTDV recording devices become affordable I'll be out in the cold. Hopefully I'll be ready to upgrade by then.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks for the replies thusfar everyone.


Sean,


Out of curiousity, what are your thinking of buying?
 

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One thing I find weird, in a sense. Bear with me.


If the copy protection aspect of all this were removed and we were talking about JUST a digital video connection standard for cabling digital sources without analog degradation, the people in this forum would be all over it, wouldn't they? I mean when audio moved from a stereo pair to a digital link, there was no looking back. So in absense of all the politics, wouldn't a digital video connection that also allows 2-way communication and daisy-chaining, etc., be a damn attractive feature?


I decided to wait for a Firewire set not mainly for the copy protection (since I agree, that's not an issue for the near or medium term) but just because I think it will be damn cool to have all my digital vid components talking to each other directly instead of through a limited # of analog hookups (of which no TV has enough of). I'm excited by the prospect of connecting stuff like a sat box or Tivo-type unit in a way that the signal stays purely digital right up until it hits the CRT -- or better yet for a plasma when there is no analog singal involved at all.. That will be sweet..




[This message has been edited by Innerloop (edited 09-18-2001).]
 

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ABC is committed to all HDTV in 720p, at least for the foreseeable future.


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Quote:
Sean, Out of curiousity, what are your thinking of buying?
I'm waiting to have a gander at the Toshiba 57HX81. Once I see it I'll probably choose either that or a 50HX81, depending on whether I think the 57HX81 looks sharp enough from only 8 feet back. I'm impressed at the buzz I've been hearing on the quality of the new Toshibas, as well as their reasonable price points for a 16:9 set.
 

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Quote:
So in absense of all the politics, wouldn't a digital video connection that also allows 2-way communication and daisy-chaining, etc., be a damn attractive feature?
Yes it would be, and in time it will become the normal way and we'll all look back at these old days and smile wistfully. "When I was young", we'll say "you needed 57 cables and special cable management accessories to hook up a TV and a few peripherals"... http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/smile.gif


The big issue that most people have is backward compatibility - the threat that material won't be viewable over the analogue connections on the considerable number of TVs already in owner's hands. Imagine the outcry that would have been raised when S-Video was introduced if the equipment that had it didn't also continue to have RCA connectors. That's the real issue.


Another issue, less talked about, is the length of time it's going to take for everyone to agree on exactly which connections (DVI or IEEE-1934) are needed on what equipment, and to ensure that everone's products interoperate with each other. For example, right now I understand that Sony's IEEE-1394 video cameras can't play on Sony's IEEE-1394 televisions. I predict another huge fuss when people start buying equipment that they expect to work together and discover that it doesn't...
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I'm eager to look at the 57HX81 too when available. However, I'm tempted by Sears' 0% financing this Saturday and price matching. I could simply buy a Mits. 55809 this Saturday and be done with it. And also have future firewire capability to boot.

 

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Quote:
Originally posted by rblnr:


1) Buy a Mitsubishi. The promise module guarantees I at least have a firewire input should it be required in the future for certain broadcasts at full resolution.
Uncompressed HD requires something on the order of a 1.4Gb/sec transfer rate. You can't squeeze this much data throught a 400Mbs or even 800Mbs 1394 connection between the set top and the TV set. So the question is, would you need two connections to the TV from the set top ? 1394 for SD programming and component for HD programming ?


DVI on the other hand supports the 1/4Gb/sec rate required for uncompressed HD.


[This message has been edited by Hairy Troll (edited 09-20-2001).]
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I've been thinking about the transfer rate issue as I've been doing some editing in HD which requires very high throughput rates. An SDI or digital component interface is used. In the end, FIrewire may end up to be primarily a 'convenience' connection, a way for components to communicate. Mits. does not 'promise' DVI.


It's taken several years for HDTV to gain the current, relavtively paltry, level penetration into households. Prices have dropped and sales have increased, but the sales numbers are still small enough so that most media companies wouldn't have a second thought about orphaning current owners.


Using a similar argument, it's going to take some years before DVI-capable sets are going to be installed in adequate numbers so that the user base can support DVI exclusive content. If you were to broadcast full bandwidth HD (not downrezzed), exclusively through a DVI connection, whose going to be able to view it for the next 4-5 years? You'd have to sell millions of DVI-capable sets relatively quickly (much faster than HDTV sales have been growing thusfar and last time I checked, we were in a recession so sales of most $$$ things have slowed. As evidence, Apple withheld intro. of a new computer because of these conditions)) for DVI to be viable in the near future.


Additionally, broadcasters have been incredibly slow to implement HD in any case and probably will continue to drag their feet. PPV events may be the odd HD/DVI presentations, but again, who out there will be able to view it on a DVI set anytime soon?


Using the HBO/Springsteen HD PPV event as a recent example: if it was encrypted to be viewable in full rez. HD only through a digital connection, they'd have no viewers. And almost none if they did the same thing three years from now.


Regarding recording, I'm not fully up on this, but are there HD recorders at a consumer level (i.e. price) that accept component inputs? Is there then a reason in the near future to downrez.? DVD is still new; I'd be shocked if they throw a new HD/DVD recordable format at us anytime soon. Recording 5 mins. of compressed, but NTSC broadcast quality on hard disk takes roughly 2gigs of space. HD quality swallows present hard drives whole. I own a BetaSP deck, component inputs, 700 lines of rez., sub HD, and it goes for $7800 new.


Tangentally, I have no doubt that 'pirates' will crack whatever encryption code and be able to make HD copies of anything. Households won't have to bother.


Apologies for long-windedness. The point I've labored toward is obvious. The personal point is that maybe I'll just buy the 57HX81 that I really want. I don't want to spend my life tweaking a Mits. as seems necessary to get it to look good.
 
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