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Discussion Starter #1
First a little background...

PAL PS3's differ from their NTSC counterparts in how they output standard/enhanced def resolutions.

Where the NTSC units output 480i/p (60Hz), PAL units output 576i/p (50Hz). However, when outputing 720p and 1080i/p, both consoles output at 60Hz.

This is great for games as all games are designed to run at 60Hz anyways, but its not an ideal situation for PAL HD video playback.

Because XMB playback at these resolutions is limited to 60Hz only, any HD footage that is 50Hz in nature, plays back with unwelcome judder.

I have an HDV camcorder (PAL) and a PAL PS3 and have found this to be rather frustrating, however I found that there is an exception.

AVCHD media that is authored as PAL, instructs the console to change into 50Hz mode. The footage plays beautifully and the screen refresh rate returns to 60Hz on return to the XMB.

There are no manual settings for this and playing the exact same clips via the XMB results in them being conformed to 60Hz. So its safe to say that something in the AVCHD structure is flagging the console and telling it to change modes.

Now, the question that arose from this discovery was what does an NTSC PS3 do when met with a PAL authored disc?

Someone may already have that answer prepared for me, but I thought it would be good for people to discover for themselves.

You will need:

* An NTSC PS3 with current firmware (Jap/US/HK should all work the same)

* A 25fps/50Hz HD clip http://www.filecabin.co.nz/8905820 (footage is my own)

* AVCHD authoring software (I've been using Nero Vision 4)

* A display that can report what refresh rate it is currently displaying (you should be able to observe the display change refresh rates if it is a CRT and doesn't display a dialog).

I'm sure you could just author a 30fps clip as PAL for the sake of this experiment as all we are trying to establish is if the refresh rate changes, but using a 25fps clip will be easier to determine if the playback looks correct or not.

If the disc presents itself to the PS3 as 'Data Disc' then your authoring has failed. You should see 'AVCHD' in the XMB.

I look forward to the findings as I have no idea what the result will be. Generally every display sold in PAL territories will do both 60 and 50Hz, but I'm not sure if that goes for NTSC territories too. If you get a blank screen, then its a fairly safe bet that the console has changed modes, but the screen won't support it.

I've tested with both HDMI and Component and it has worked for both.

The results of this could be quite disappointing for the NTSC owners living in PAL territories who are also planning on investing in the PlayTV DVB-T add-on when it launches. Broadcasts in those territories are 720p and 1080i at 50Hz, so an NTSC PS3 that can't support HD 50Hz is going to make it incompatible.

Look forward to the results.
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