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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
In light of the recent complete confusion over DVI/IEEE 1394 FireWire interfaces on HDTVs and STBs, should consumers be advised to refuse to purchases these items until this controversy is resolved?


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Don Silinski


[This message has been edited by donsil (edited 07-27-2001).]
 

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No. None of the new network TV shows this fall, including PBS, will be affected. None of the currently available HD offerings from HBO and Showtime will be affected in any short-term time frame. Stopping the momentum of HD-related sales at this point would be cutting off our noses to spite our own face.
 

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I agree with Jim. Why should I delay my enjoyment of HD because of something that MAY happen in the future. I think all the threads talking about lawsuits and boycotts are premature. None of the manufacturers or studios have issued any kind of transtition plan. Until this is done no one knows what will happen. I highly doubt that any manufacturer or studio will suddenly stop broadcasting HD content. I believe there have been close to one million HD-Ready sets sold and the sales are growing very quickly. I don't think even the MPAA is stupid enough to alienate over one million consumers. I may be a bit of an optimist but I don't see it happening anytime soon.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Jim and GScott,


I actually agree with the both of you. I think that there have been closer to 2 million HDTV ready sets sold so far. While the accompanying STB sales may only be around 30,000 to 50,000, that all adds up to quite a few homes currently watching or soon to be watching HDTV.


Additionally, the new 2002 HDTVs have all been engineered and some OEMs already have the new sets in production. I have not read that any of these 2002 sets will have DVI interfaces. Although, Mits, Sony, and possibly RCA, will have IEEE 1394 FireWire connections on their upcoming sets.


All in all, by mid 2002, we could have as many as 3 million HDTV ready sets out in the marketplace without any type of DVI port, with possibly as many as 100,000 to 150,000 STBs without any DVI connections.


While I just can't envision that anyone would be dumb enough to make these kind of HDTV/STB numbers obsolete, it would still be comforting to hear from some of the OEMs (e.g. Mits, Dish, Panasonic, RCA, Sony) on how they plan to pull off this happy marriage of the future. Perhaps if they thought that consumers are now going to shy away from buying their hardware until this confusion is cleared up, then maybe they'll start coming out with the explanatory press releases.


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Don Silinski


[This message has been edited by donsil (edited 07-28-2001).]


[This message has been edited by donsil (edited 07-28-2001).]
 

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I am sorry but I most offer the opposing view.


Why would you want to spend as much as $8000 (High end RPTV and STB) at this time of uncertainty?


I would not recommend the purchase of ANYTHING until we are given more information.


I do not understand all of the posts that I have seen here that say "There is no way that anyone would obsolete xxx number of HDTV's" Of course there is. The CE world obsoletes things every day. In this care most of the set makers DO NOT want to do any of this. They are being forced to add DVI at the hands of the MPAA. I am sure that they will say "I sorry" but that does not get your $8000 back. Give it some time and more will be clear.


Todd
 

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I think the numbers of people who are buying high-end RPTV's, or front projection systems, with the express purpose of using them for HD only (or even primarily) are very, very small. I've had HDTV in my home since November of 1998, but I still watch easily 20 times more DVD than HDTV. Todays HD-ready RPTV's are really ideal DVD playback devices.


Leave HD considerations completely out of the equation. What would you recommend to somebody who wanted to watch primarily DVD's? Would you recommend they spend big bucks on a non-HD ready set?


Which is a bigger waste of money -- buying an HD-ready set with the known copy-protection risks, or buying a non-HD capable SDTV set?


Today's HD-ready set may be made obsolete by copy-protection technology. I think the chances of that are highly overblown, but are certainly real.


A non-HD-ready SDTV set is OBSOLETE TODAY. It won't make the best use of DVD's. It will never get any more out an HDTV receiver than a down-converted s-video signal.


Recommending a new purchase of a non-HD ready set today is, in my opinion, doing a great disservice.


[This message has been edited by Jim Ferguson (edited 07-28-2001).]
 

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Jim,


Your DVD analogy is a tad-bit off. SDTV's are not obsolete because DVD's work better w/HDTV's. SDTV's are sold as advertised--whatever their capabilties. However, HD-READY sets, may not be READY at all. That's why they shouldn't be labeled 'ready' until they know for sure.


JediMastr


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Much of the hoopla and uncertainty could be dispelled if THEY would just get together and issue the following statements:


1) New STB's will still have HD component outputs (this IS needed!) in addition to digital. Unprotected content will be available on component unchanged.


2) On those component outputs, copy protected content will be down rezzed to ___. (fill in exact prog/interlaced number) The ___ resolution MUST be better than 480i so there is still some incentive for current owners/purchasers to not feel totally screwed. Specify if different for copy once/never.


3) Nothing but PPV will be copy protected before ___ (fill in date).


- Tom




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If one is really interested in a quality home theater experience for DVD's, a display that does 480p (EDTV Monitor) is a minimum.


The problem is that EDTV are few & far between. So, the alternative now is a HDTV monitor that doesn't break the bank. Those consumers who can afford to step up can do so without spending a ton, HDTV Monitor prices have dropped dramatically. Those who have a more limited budget may want to wait until things clear up as to DVI, IEEE1394, etc. I think it's an individual decision.


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There are two senses of "obsolete" here:


1) no longer state of the art

2) no longer able to do what it previously did


The current HDTV equipment will obviously be "obsolete" in sense 1 above. This need not concern anyone unduly. Personal computers become "obsolete" (sense 1) every few months.


The real question is whether we will see obsolescence in sense 2. For example, will we continue to be able to receive OTA programming, and HBO-HD, SHO-HD, and the like. Will we be able to do what we currently do with the equipment we have bought?


I consider it unlikely that we will find our current equipment to lose its current abilities. That would just annoy too many people. If I wake up tomorrow and find that my DTC-100 no longer will receive HD programming from DirecTV, that will not only be a bummer for me, DirecTV will suffer the consequences of really annoying me, along with many others. This has not been the way DirecTV has done business so far, and I doubt that they will start now.


I cannot recall an instance in which current capabilities of consumer electronic equipment were withdrawn. The only possible instance is when Circuit City cancelled Divx. Recall that they paid current Divx owners, kept the service in operation for 1 year, and the machines continued to function as DVD players. Circuit City didn't want to be known as having sold something and then abandoning it.


The more likly scenario is that new gear, especially with recording capabilities, will be compliant with the new 5C standard, while our present equipment continues to do what it already does throughout its expected life.

 

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Those happen to be my sentiments as well rlsmith. If I'm wrong, so be it..but I'm gonna gonna stress over it at this point.


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Dan


Knowledge without experience is only information...
 

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Don and GScott -

The figures reported by the CEA are as follows:

1,221,907 displays and integrated sets thru June 2001 to dealers. During the twelve months ending June sales have been virtually flat at about 245K per quarter. Since some 60% of sets are sold in the second half of a year they could be expected to increase in the third quarter.


95,267 STBs and integrated receivers were sold thru February 2001 as reported by the CEA to Mark Schubin. . In the quarter ending February they totaled 28,998. Last week Mark Schubin said that he had been promised more recent figures. There are two schools of thought as to what has happened to STB sales. One believes they have increased because more STBs are on sale; the other(which may consist only of me) thinks they have decreased since my local Best Buy has only sold one in the last 14 weeks(a Toshiba last week) and had a DTC100 returned during that period.


You can see the details at: http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/Forum11/HTML/010908.html#1



 
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