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Are TV manufacturers doing enough...

for digital and widescreen TV (September 2004)

BB
BBC TV Centre
marksi posted:
Quote:
The standard format in shops still appear to be 4:3


Have a look in Currys or Dixons. The vast majority of televisions they are selling are widescreen (portables excepted).


I went in a branch of Curry's last week to check out the prices on a printer I was buying and walked past the TV section in store.

The odd thing is they don't seem to show live television any more like they used to - they have some kind of showreel which I presume is piped from a DVD player or a computer in the back (you can imagine if it was one on the shop floor - people would be tinkering with it and also inserting DVD's of all types! Laughing ).

Of all the TV sets that were on display, most of them were widescreen and I could only see about 3 of them set up properly. The others were in a mix of centre cut out, 4:3 stretchyvision or had some sort of wierd cropping done to the picture so that only part of the 16:9 frame could be seen (even the bottom words were chopped off!). The 4:3 ones (portables and normal sized ones) were displaying the picture in 16:9 letterbox.

Rough example of what I saw ...

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Original 16:9 picture.

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Wierdly cropped picture.

I think news programming and anything that shows 4:3 programming to an extent should broadcast in 4:3. It really makes my blood boil to see broadcasters butchering source material to make it something it is not. Evil or Very Mad
NW
nwtv2003 Granada North West Today
BBC TV Centre posted:
The odd thing is they don't seem to show live television any more like they used to - they have some kind of showreel which I presume is piped from a DVD player or a computer in the back (you can imagine if it was one on the shop floor - people would be tinkering with it and also inserting DVD's of all types! Laughing ).


Pop into any Dixons (if there are any left) and they rarely show anyform of live TV on there, they show a looped DVD that promotes DVD and Sky usually, the only things I have seen in there is a radio station on the Sky EPG being live, I have also seen News 24 on their TV's too. Though I guess its up to the employees who usually change channels, though I don't think customers are allowed to, though I did it when On Digital came out and I think I broke it, but I left it on ITV2 about 2 weeks before it came on air, so it was showing black! Laughing

Though back to the point I don't believe it should be up to the TV manufacturers for this sort of thing with Digital and what have you, but they still try to make some form of development with TV's, ie 16:9 function, DTT capabilties, Dolby etc. Though alot more people these days do tend to have more newer style of TV, pratically everyone who I know has a Widescreen TV, even we do, I even thought of getting a cheap one from Asda for myself. Though companies only do it to make money and they usually provide the same sort of gear for the whole of the world, or the same sort of model for most of Europe anyway.

One thing I just don't get is why do TV's come built in with so many channels waiting to be programmed?!?!? I mean from a UHF signal the majority can only get 5 channels, then there's one for the Video and one or two for games consoles etc, what I don't get is why we have 80 channels on your standard TV? Does anywhere in the world need 80 channels pretuned for bog standard UHF TV? On my TV I only need one channel and that is the SCART one!
:-(
A former member Anglia (East) Look East
Quote:
As for whether or not manufacturers could be 'doing more' to increase takeup of digital and widescreen, well they're not going to. Manufacturers only make things they believe they can sell. They are driven by what the consumers want, not by what the industry wants or a country's government wants. As long as people continue to want to buy analogue TV's with a 4:3 screen, the manufacturers will continue to make them.

And of course that also means that since enough people want to buy a TV that is analogue or 4:3 (or both) to make it viable to continue producing them, then that means that a large number of the people want exactly that type of equipment and DON'T WANT widescreen or digital.

With that in mind, why should change try to be forced against the people's will?


Totally agree. I have widescreen and digital on the downstairs sets, and digital upstairs (4:3 though, set up in letterbox mode), and am a supporter of progress in this area.

But it should be led by the market. If 50% of customers want a 20", non-widescreen, non-digital, non-FST, even non-teletext television, then who are we to say they shouldn't have just that? New systems live or die on whether they sell in sufficient quantities. If the majority in the 60s and 70s had been content with black-and-white, we'd still be lumbered with black-and-white. Tough -- that's the way life is.
:-(
A former member Anglia (East) Look East
Quote:
what I don't get is why we have 80 channels on your standard TV?


Funny isn't it? Until a few years ago we still had a portable with 8 channels, and even those were not all filled. 100+ analogue presets is a marketing gimmick from the past when multichannel TV was in its infancy; manufacturers would boast of 8, 16, 20, 32, 40, 50 and finally 99/100 presets in an effort to get you to buy their set, when in reality the 16-channel tuner was as much as anyone could ever conceivably use. Even in the US people rarely get more than 6-10 channels on terrestrial.
BR
Brekkie Wales Wales Today
jason posted:
Quote:
what I don't get is why we have 80 channels on your standard TV?


Funny isn't it? Until a few years ago we still had a portable with 8 channels, and even those were not all filled. 100+ analogue presets is a marketing gimmick from the past when multichannel TV was in its infancy; manufacturers would boast of 8, 16, 20, 32, 40, 50 and finally 99/100 presets in an effort to get you to buy their set, when in reality the 16-channel tuner was as much as anyone could ever conceivably use. Even in the US people rarely get more than 6-10 channels on terrestrial.


Good point - but as I could get three regions through my set, I used 15 channels + video.

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