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The 'hd' Revolution


Andy_Tanner
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after so many people saying we won't see the benefits of x360 until we see it in hi-def i thought i'd scout around for a new telly.

i found one that claimed to be "HD ready". 1080i is it's native resolution and it supports 480p and 576i. what does any of that mean ? fuck knows, but apparantly it doesn't support 720p which is what x360 will use. so in short it's no use to me.

i don't consider myself that knowledgable about this stuff but if i can't get my head around it then god knows what the general consumer will make of it.

an absolute overpriced joke right now.

the revolution has been delayed.

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RGB scart is as much a standard as 720p, or 1080i. There are other scart connector signal options (composite, S-Video) too, so it's not like there's anything different happening here, it's just teh general public arent up to speed with the new technology yet. It will come in time.

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I'm sceptical about the emphasis being put on high definition and was reassured after reading this in a summary of John Carmack's keynote at Quakecon:

He feels that HDTV is overblown, and makes references to the Super Nintendo having support built in for it. Microsoft wants all games to output to HDTV, and he feels it is a foolish marketing decision. Quake 4 runs well in HDTV now, but future games may not. He would rather use anti-aliasing and other tricks that would in the end produce a better gaming experience since the frame rates running faster is better in his opinion.

Say what you want but Carmack knows a thing or two and if he says it's rubbish then I totally completely 100% agree.

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the point is that there doesn't seem to be any kind of standard, unlike RGB scart. why have tv's supporting some modes but not others ? it's confusing to say the least.

The one tv you found was particularly misleading (bordering on illegal IMO, there was no way its native resolution was 1820x1080). Most HD compliant TV's should be relatively straightforward to work with, HDMI should remove a lot of the problems associated with multiple broadcast standards.

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Things are a bit confusing for the man in the street at the moment but it's very early in the HD cycle - in fact, even though high-street shops can sell you an HD-ready TV most of them don't really sell anything that outputs HD video to watch on it (OK, OK, apart from a few PS2 games, your PC and upscaled DVD from expensive DVD players).

In 12 months things will be different - cheaper, better-soecced screens and Xbox360 games and (hopefully) Sky HD to use them with. PS3 shouldn't be far away either...

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To be HD ready, it must support 720p and 1080i at both 50 and 60hz.

you see that's the thing. a lot have "HD ready" plastered over them and yet they don't support all these modes.

when browsing sites like Empire Direct or Dixons etc there is no option to view HD ready TVs and even looking at the product specification doesn't tell you either way. obviously this is the retailer's fault but considering this is supposed to be the next big thing, they need to work with the consumer and help them understand.

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I said in another thread that mandatory HD would be an albatross around the neck of developers who are required to waste cpu, memory and rendering power that could be used to enrich their games in other ways drawing huge numbers of extra pixels 83% of which will be wasted on 98% of people who will buy and use these consoles. I think it comes at too heavy a performance penalty (see Perfect Dark Zero for an example of this) for it to be the new standard for game when barely anyone has the kit to make use of it. the way i see it, the next generation is going to turn into something of a cash bonfire for the likes of Sony and Microsoft, and this overreliance on tech without thinking of the implications is going to be a large part of it.

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I think I've got my head around what specs I need to look out for (480p, 720p, 1080i and HDMI), but I guess what concerns me at the moment is that everything I currently watch on it (Videos, DVDs, Sky through a Scart, Games) will look crap on it until they all catch up with HD technology.

Is that the case? Will my old Vic & Bob videos say look better, or worse, on a HDTV? What would my PAL N64 look like on it?

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I think I've got my head around what specs I need to look out for (480p, 720p, 1080i and HDMI), but I guess what concerns me at the moment is that everything I currently watch on it (Videos, DVDs, Sky through a Scart, Games) will look crap on it until they all catch up with HD technology.

Is that the case? Will my old Vic & Bob videos say look better, or worse, on a HDTV? What would my PAL N64 look like on it?

It depends on the screen - some are far more forgiving with low-res/quality signals. The Panasonic Viera range, for example, looks good (IMHO) with stuff like Sky via RGB SCART whereas (again IMHO) a lot of the ALiS-based TVs look much worse. You need to check it out with your own eyes.

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Personally, I like the price point of the xb360, I don't like the price point of HDTV. So I'm more waiting for a price drop in TV's than the console.

I wonder if a lot of people are thinking the same way, and if it'll backfire on microsoft.

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I think I've got my head around what specs I need to look out for (480p, 720p, 1080i and HDMI), but I guess what concerns me at the moment is that everything I currently watch on it (Videos, DVDs, Sky through a Scart, Games) will look crap on it until they all catch up with HD technology.

Is that the case? Will my old Vic & Bob videos say look better, or worse, on a HDTV? What would my PAL N64 look like on it?

Your DVD's will look fine. In fact, get a prog scan DVD player and they will look more than fine, they will look amazing!

The only two consoles considered retro I have hooked up were n64 and dreamcast. Goldeneye looked a blocky mess, the dreamcast looks amazing!

That said I stuck in the Ocarina of time disk you get with windwaker yesterday abd was pleasantly suprised at how nice it looked.

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I'm sceptical about the emphasis being put on high definition and was reassured after reading this in a summary of John Carmack's keynote at Quakecon:

Say what you want but Carmack knows a thing or two and if he says it's rubbish then I totally completely 100% agree.

Yet he came up with the engine used in that slow as piece of turd (locked at 60fps) Doom3.

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Personally, I like the price point of the xb360, I don't like the price point of HDTV. So I'm more waiting for a price drop in TV's than the console.

I wonder if a lot of people are thinking the same way, and if it'll backfire on microsoft.

you could be right. i jumped at the chance of pre-ordering the Core Pack for £210. but then various people have spoken up advising that unless i invest in a new telly it's not worth while.

i'm not sure most people would be willing to fork out £500+ just to experience better looking games.

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Personally, I like the price point of the xb360, I don't like the price point of HDTV. So I'm more waiting for a price drop in TV's than the console.

I wonder if a lot of people are thinking the same way, and if it'll backfire on microsoft.

Well, I like the way it's prepared for the future. If you buy a 360 at the end of this year and decide to splash out on a HDTV in a year or two year's time, at least you know your console will use it. When I play Halo 2, PGR 2, Resident Evil 4 or other great looking games now which require you to look in the distance, I'm irritated by the scanlines and blurry visuals when you get close to the screen. Knowing the next gen will be as crisp as my computer monitor is a great selling point for me. Even though I might not be able to buy a HD-TV for the next year or two.

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Well,  I like the way it's prepared for the future. If you buy a 360 at the end of this year and decide to splash out on a HDTV in a year or two year's time, at least you know your console will use it. When I play Halo 2, PGR 2, Resident Evil 4 or other great looking games now which require you to look in the distance, I'm irritated by the scanlines and blurry visuals when you get close to the screen. Knowing the next gen will be as crisp as my computer monitor is a great selling point for me. Even though I might not be able to buy a HD-TV for the next year or two.

in the short term though the problem seems to be that the games won't look any better than on xbox, or even PS2, for most people.

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