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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
 http://www.latimes.com/features/reli...ews%2Dreligion


OK here's good and bad:


Bad:


1. If I read this article before getting into HDTV and I was not so technically inclined, it would be a long time before I got into HDTV. (Frankly, I am questioning it now!)


2. It shows what we already knew, but now anyone who reads the article knows it too. This is bad PR for HDTV.


3. I made all of the same assumptions as the author when I bought my DTC100. It shows how BS DirecTV is. Especially when the stuff in the Demo Loop didn't ever exist in HD (Dennis Miller, etc.). That is why I cancelled DirecTV a long time ago.


Good:


1. It lets me know how my introduction to HDTV was not unique. Along with members of this forum, I feel vindicated.


2. Accurately depicts what a person can expect if he decides he is ready for HDTV.


Ultimately, I think HDTV is going to keep foundering as long as this is the typical experience. Especially when a buyer gets the TV home and realizes that he is not even close to getting anything in HDTV until a few more considerable investments are made. And even then ones expectations will mnost likely not be met.


Rick
 

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I was surprised to see that this article apparently ran in the Religion section. I always kind of thought that HDTV was kind of like a religion, but now I know for sure!!


Anyway, I think that while on one hand, the article does present the appearance that it's costly and difficult to get set up with HDTV, it also points out that there's a lot of misunderstanding in the market. Hopefully, this article will help to alleviate this and consumers will be more aware of the differences between an HDTV set and an HDTV-READY set.


And honestly, the whole shelf-thing... that was his problem, had NOTHING to do with HDTV. He would have had the same problem if he bought a bigger NTSC big screen.


And times have changed since he bought his stuff, equipment and STB's are much more readily available. Now it really depends on those morons over at BB and CC and others... They need to know what the hell they're talking about, and they seem to make it up on the spot. And for some reason, people tend to believe them....
 

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I can appreciate these "Joe Six-pack difficulties getting HDTV" stories because it *is* difficult and the the HDTV offerings *are* slim. But I just hate it when they perpetuate fallacies or leave out important information.


Let me provide a few examples from the story:


1)"so the only way to get HDTV now is with DirecTV."

a) Wrong because Dish Network also provides HDTV

b) Wrong because his local broadcasters broadcast HDTV


2)To get the HDTV decoder, you also had to buy the DirecTV dish and a second, analog decoder to use on another TV.

a)You don't need to buy a dish to use an RCA DTC-100.

b)You don't need to buy a second receiver box.


3). "Wow," I thought, "I'm going to see the Super Bowl in HDTV! Wow!" The TV Event of the Year. . . . Wrong.

a) No, he was wrong. He was just too stupid to hook up a local antenna and get the local broadcast of the superbowl.


4)"True, one of the HDTV channels is HBO. That's OK, I guess, but not particularly better than the digital signal I get from my cable box. "


Wrong, the HBO-HD signal is *way* better than a compressed NTSC signal on digital cable. I suspect he was looking at the wrong channel.


5)I got the antenna installed and signed up for the minimum DirecTV package that would give me the two HDTV channels. Another $55 per month to add to my current $80 digital cable bill.

a)wrong because you can sign up for HBO Ala card for $12/month

b) wrong because he should have dumped his digital cable since it was now redundant to his satellite subscription.


6)So now I had $5,100 worth of equipment and a $130 monthly programming bill. And still no HDTV.

a) Wrong because he was at least getting HBO-HD at this point.


I can appreciate the fact that these stories highlight a big problem with HDTV . . . the fact that there is a lot of confusion and misinformation out there. But what irks me is while he is making fun of others for their misfinformation, *HE* IS MISINFORMING THE PUBLIC! Hypocritcal Jack-ass! He should have gone back and explained what the *right* course of action would have been! He did this somewhat by talking about terrestrial HDTV, but he left many other mistakes he made linger. Instead of writing these hack job pieces filled with misinformation, why not clear up some of the confusion. Sure, go ahead and point out that there is a lot of confusion out there . . . BUT DON'T ADD TO IT!


>I can't wait for football season to start again.


Boy is he in for a disappointment. ;-)
 

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It is great to see articles about HDTV esp. in the LA Times. It gives me hope that people are starting to recognize HDTV's potential. However, I agree with Dagman. That guy (Thomas H. Maugh II) is a retard and the thing that sucks most is that no one knows dick about HDTV (except us AVSForum types of course!) and now these prospective but ignorant HDTV consumers are gonna read this guys article and never want to buy HDTV! The guy usually writes about medicinal issues...great...let's let him write HD articles. I loved Dagman's respose and was laughing after I read the last line....that jack-ass is definitely in for a treat when he finds no hidef football. However, he might tune into a game and figure that it is indeed hidef and ***** to the world again about how HD looks no different than standard NTSC!


------------------

Kent Oberlin www.koberlinstudios.com

for HT pics!


[This message has been edited by koberlin1 (edited 07-24-2001).]
 

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I agree with you guys but didn't we read and comment on this same story > 4 months ago? Check the date of March 8. '01 at the top. Are they that short of content that they're re-running it as something new?


It was also picked up by the San Jose Mercury back then on the cover of the business section.
 

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Amen dagman. Articles like that always piss me off too.


Just once I'd like to see an article in a major publication present it from the flipside which could easily be done without even having to fudge on anything.


HDTV, Easier than I thought..


Being an avid movie fan I must admit the new widescreen digital HD televisions had been catching my eye everytime I went to the store. What better way to view them I thought as opposed to my 27" Sanyo.


But I wanted my cake and to be able to eat it too, so I wanted to know about High Definition television as well. A It seemed to good to be true. I had heard "but there's no HD programming available!" so I decided to check for myself. How wrong I found that statement to be. CBS's whole primetime lineup aside from news programming is in HD. The Super Bowl, the AFC playoffs, the Masters Golf Tournament...are you kidding me? ABC with NYPD Blue, and movies a couple times a month. Leno on NBC, glorious nature shows in HD on PBS..wait, and the movie channels too, I asked? Sure enough, HBO and Showtime each offer an HD channel. Not surprisingly, an HD PPV channel is available as well.


Wow, well now I'm thinking, if I can get all this in HD when will I have time to watch my DVD's..not like I spend 8 hours a night in front of the TV.


So, I plonked down my 2500.00 for a Mitsu 55807 HDTV and about another 500.00 for a Dish Network HD capable satellite system. After the system was installed, I went ahead and cancelled my Digital cable, as i knew I wouldnt be needing that anymore.


But c'mon you're saying..there has to be a catch, it cant be that easy! Well, there are issues, yes. Needing 2 satellite dishes for one thing as the HD comes from a different satellite than the main programming. And for another, I had to put an old standard antenna like dad used to use in my attic for the over the air stations. Mattered not to me though, I was in heaven..the images were pure ey-candy. And all for less than 3000.00 dollars when I had heard it takes 6k or more and that there was no programming.. Dont make me laugh!


Now, pass the popcorn.


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Dan


Knowledge without experience is only information...
 

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Great story - I'll hire you!


How about this.


I wanted to get HD/digital TV on my beautiful 21" Sony computer monitor in my master bedroom but didn't want a 2nd screen in the room. I went to the classifieds and bought a used RCA DTC100 DTV receiver for $250 and attached it to a $40 antenna and now get 9 local digital channels.


OK, so I already had an oval DirecTV Plus antenna on the roof, so I plugged into one of the 3 free outputs - now I'm getting HBOHD too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Quote:
Originally posted by dagman:
I can appreciate these "Joe Six-pack difficulties getting HDTV" stories because it *is* difficult and the the HDTV offerings *are* slim. But I just hate it when they perpetuate fallacies or leave out important information......
When I read these articles, it _does_ p*** me off too, but my logical reasoning side takes over. If you try to emphasize a little with the fact that the guy is _NOT_ technically inclined, like MOST americans, then the story does NOT reflect well for HDTV.


Do you really want to be part of an "exclusive" club where only intelligent technically inclined people are able to acquire HDTV successfully? As much as this thought warms my egotistical heart, I know that the success of HDTV means Joe Six Pack has to buy lots of them. This article shows why he will not.


Installing and using HDTV MUST get simpler to improve it's image. Experiences like the one in the articel (and not too far off from my own) must not be the standard fare or we will be watching SD upconverts for a long long time. Sales people and other professionals must DO BETTER!


Anyway, I'll stop ranting. I don't think it is fair to beat up on the author. Frankly he probably best represents the people we want to buy HDTV's in order to get content increased. The point is NOT what a stupid person he is, but how difficult it was to get set up (even if he is "stupid").


I do realize that the article is kinda old, but I saw it through Slashdot and decided to bring it up.


Rick

 

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Seems to me the real "difficulty" the author had was because of bad information provided to him by a number of different sources. I don't think it's so much that setting up HDTV is difficult. Hell, remember how frustrating people used to get at having to program their VCR's? But we still ended up with plenty of them, didn't we?


Part of the solution is hardware/technology. But I still stick by the stance that the biggest problem with HDTV implementation and acceptance today is the perpetuation of lies, half-truths, and just plain misinformation being provided by sales and marketing people that ought to know better.


It's a sad state of affairs when I can go into a Home Depot and confidently ask someone in their department how to go about doing something or what they would recommend, but I can't go into Best Buy and ask someone about a television and get the right answer. This article re-emphasizes the fact that we've got a real problem with the education of America on HDTV. Can anyone say, "HDTV for Dummies"?


It is NOT that difficult, if you get the right information up front. And it's the information part that's the real problem.
 

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Hahaha, thanks Curtis..but hire me for what? I could use a new job!


And Rick, with all due respect, yes it would/will be great when HD is far closer to being plug and play than what it is now. Indeed that will be what it takes to make this more mainstream. But the problem with articles like that without an opposing view, is that they can really harm the cause. Why doesnt he just save a story like that for friends and family where they can all have a "laugh" about it and thats that.


There had to be people that were about to begin exploring HD that read that. But instead of doing some of their own research, they probably took it as gospel and dropped the notion altogether right then and there. Thats whats sad.


I'd rather see nothing at all written about HD as opposed to that.


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Dan


Knowledge without experience is only information...
 

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I think this clearly shows that there is an entrepreneurial opportunity here for the avsforum people. Alan could setup advertisements aimed at joesixpack. These ads could have hdtv tips. Not only will it inform the public properly, but it will drum in some new business. If the other companies have dropped the ball, then somebody else can pick it up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
That's the way it should be. Now if ALL HDTV mfrs. would start including the tuners, then the "typical" HDTV experience be no different then getting a regular TV.


Of course, if you live where there is little or no OTA (like there is any significant amount of HD programming, other than CBS), I guess your f*&^ed, right? Then I guess in that case you don't even waste your time getting one. Not very good for HDTV.


Rick
 

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Of course, the concepts of how much HD there actually is to view, and the means it takes to get it, are 2 different things anyway.


For folks that live in the middle of nowhere theres no such thing as plug and play even for analog tv. Thats of course one of the reasons that theres 15 million plus DBS customers. They have to set up a dish, aim it correctly, choose between various types of a/v connectors, etc. Once you've gone through all that, whats so much harder if you happen to have bought an HD monitor, about using the HD capable receiver and component connections instead of s-video? But yeah, umm..there are cases of compatibility issues. Kinda like with setting up the satellite dish to begin with. You better make sure you have exposure to the southern sky before you buy one. Wont do you much good otherwise. I'm surprised the author in question didnt have that problem too! "Well gee, nobody told me the dish has to point in a specific direction!"


Again my concern is, when it comes to the media, they always want to look at things negatively it seems, and never put it in a positive light.


I dont know, I suppose it makes sense. It's not much different than these forums. The posts from people with problems/beefs outnumber the positive posts 20-1. And thats simply because it's not the nature of people to continually post how happy they are with a product. I suppose even reading these forums from that standpoint would be ominous to some people looking to get into HD. All they ever seem to see is the problems.


Meanwhile, for every poster with a problem theres a guy like me that is satisfied at this point with all aspects of my HD experience. I just dont feel the need to be woo hoo'n it all the time. I save it for real life.


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Dan


Knowledge without experience is only information...




[This message has been edited by DP1 (edited 07-26-2001).]
 

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I gotta agree there. While OTA HDTV is free, it's a pain in the ass. My wife would prefer to watch what I consider to be a crappy analog cable picture than deal with dropouts, pixelation, etc., from a digital signal. It's the "all or nothing" nature of the beast that's going to frustrate the hell out of a lot of people who aren't getting signal at 100%.


Until satellite or especially cable starts carrying HDTV, it's not going to take off. People have become so accustomed to the convenience of just plugging a single wire into their tv and getting a hundred channels that they aren't about to mess with putting a lightning rod on their roof. I really think the days of the classic antenna are gone. (Wouldn't it be nice if we could receive terrestrial digital signals with an 18" dish??)


It don't get much more "plug and play" than that. Hopefully, these development will lead more cable providers down the true digital path to HDTV.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Quote:
Originally posted by DP1:
....yes it would/will be great when HD is far closer to being plug and play than what it is now. Indeed that will be what it takes to make this more mainstream. But the problem with articles like that without an opposing view, is that they can really harm the cause.....
I agree. Like I said the article _did_ p*** me off and for that reason. But as I thought about it and recalled my own experience in getting into HDTV, the kinds of things he ran into are VERY typical.


For example, not know he needed an RGB->Component transcoder. It is typical _and_ resonable to expect that when you plunk something like $3500 for a consumer item, that money is supposed to buy you more than just a box. It should work out of the box. RIGHT NOW. At least that is how I felt when I bought my HDTV.


Like buying a car. When you spend $20,000 for a car, you expect to get tires with it. You expect that the radiator has been filled. You expect that there is already oil in the car, etc.


When you buy an HDTV, you should be able to hook it up with no greater difficulty that you would go through with a current TV ( the only thing you have to compare against, really). From the buyers viewpoint, you buy the TV. Oh and then you need an STB, Oh and then you need the dish(s). Oh and then you need a transcoder. Oh and by the way there is hardly anything to watch. Not necessarily the progression one should go through when throwing down more than $3500 (or any other large amount of money).


Anyway, BB, Circuit City, Tweeter, etc. Get your ACT together. You are missing out on a huge opportunity.


Rick
 

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I just purchased a RCA F38310. Hooked up a $20 RS double bow-tie antenna and had 6 channels of digital (if not all HD) TV. Hooked up my DVD player and had gorgeous wide screen moves.

Hardest parts:

1. Lifitng that 38" tube set. Man, that's heavy.

2. Finding out I had to switch my DVD player to wide screen.


Its this easy for everyone but journalists who need a story.
 
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