Those big screen TVs

Mostly from this forum I see that many of you have, or are interested in a big screen TV, possible with HDTV resolution or capabilities. But nobody seems to discuss sources of HDTV content in this forum. So I would like to know, what are you guys watching on your big screen HDTV set?

I should start, I have a Panasonic HDTV projector 1280x720 resolution, so perfect for 720p. But the only sources that currently give me a HDTV resolution are:
1) Linux or Windows desktop including my games
(NFSU is just great on that thing),
2) Those free sample trailers from the WMV HD webside
3) Two WMV HD movies I brought from Germany encoded
in 720p (Tomb Raider II and Underworld)
4) my XBox MediaCenter dashboard

Those seem to be the only source of HDTV available to me here in Taiwan, where the latter two require considerable effort and aren’t really available to everybody. So where can I get HDTV programming in TW, in at least 480p.

Great post, ratlung, and I think the most interesting thing here is that so few people realise that without HD content, their TV is not really HD.

We got a TV not so long ago because we got a great deal on it. One of the few things that it was not was HD, and the salesman tried really hard to get my wife to pay a lot extrra for that feature, till I reminded him that we had no HD content in this country (or practically none), at which point he grinned and gave up.

I do wonder how many people have an HDTV in their house and show off the GREAT picture to all their family and friends, as they watch a standard DVD through their non progressive-scan DVD player.

[quote=“irishstu”]Great post, ratlung, and I think the most interesting thing here is that so few people realise that without HD content, their TV is not really HD.

We got a TV not so long ago because we got a great deal on it. One of the few things that it was not was HD, and the salesman tried really hard to get my wife to pay a lot extrra for that feature, till I reminded him that we had no HD content in this country (or practically none), at which point he grinned and gave up.

I do wonder how many people have an HDTV in their house and show off the GREAT picture to all their family and friends, as they watch a standard DVD through their non progressive-scan DVD player.[/quote]

Great reply, that’s exactly what I was trying to get at. I see HDTV set in every applicance or department store, but what I am missing is seeing the content. Why getting such a device now when there is no content available. One could say I am getting it for future programming, but won’t the same device be much more reasonably priced, once the programming is out there.

Having an HDTV project myself, I am sometimes wondering that for myself. At least I can use it for my computer games, and I also intend to get more of those WMV HD DVDs, but does it really justify the additional dollars? I hope with the XBox 360 and the PS3 this might change and we can actually get some HD-DVDs or Blue-Rays over here. But what I am missing is also some broadcast. The soccer world championship would be great on one of those devices.

I guess this is also a chicken and egg problem, because without HDTV sets in private households, nobody would broadcast anything, but who would by such an expensive toy, if there is no content. :s

Well, most big screens (>42" but also some LCDs >32") have a high, HDTV-compatible resolution anyhow, typically 1024x768, 1366x768 or even 1920x1080, not leaving the consumer any choice.
I would prefer 1280x720 as it matches 720p perfectly (as already mentioned) and there is less scaling to do from DVDs and normal TV broadcast. The more scaling that needs to be done, the messier it usually gets.
As there is hardly any 1080 source material I therefore see 720 as the best compromise for the time being, intending to use it with a home theater PC (HTPC) since this will allow me to watch DVDs progressively. Of course this can also be achieved with stand-alone players that support progressive scan (PS). Besides watching movies I also want to use it as a PC monitor (instead of having a separate e.g. 17" LCD monitor).

I don’t have the HTPC yet but once I find the “perfect” display it won’t take long before I will. :smiley:

There are “upconverting” DVD players that resample DVDs up to 720p HDTV. The oppo and the IOGEAR Linkplayer2 are popular. Ratlung, how do you like your Panasonic projector? I assume its native 720p. I fantasize about getting one from pricejapan.com. Sometimes I wonder if its not easier to just drive a projector straight out of the computer however.

It is also possible to download HDTV movies and DVDs alike.

AFAIK, don’t hold your breath for Taiwan’s cable or broadcast TV to offer HDTV.

That leaves satellite dishes. Anyone know if satellite can provide HDTV? I mean the satellites we can receive in Taiwan. In the USA, DirecTV satellite and Comcast cable have a half dozen or more HDTV channels. I imagine Europe and Japan have as much or more programming.

I think the only reason why you would get an HDTV nowadays is if at the same time you buy a real kickass HD DVD player so that you can watch really nice quality image DVD movies. Or you watch NHK which broadcast in HD.
I wonder when will Taiwan have HD TV channels?

xbmc (xbox media center) can upscale dvd to 720p (and 1080i). picture quality with a decent dvd encode is excellent (more than excellent actually for a 100usd gaming console) but source stays what it is supposed to be…

watching tv in tw = watching news. yes, thats a kind of entertainment for locals. i will never understand why. cable tv is king, nobody gives a s… i think it’s a long way until you get hd channels in tw. you can however try sdtv but it’s 480p at best and its limited to 14 channels!
by the way, you will be very disappointed by tv quality (local cable tv) on any lcd tv. dont be fooled by the nice hd demos they play in 3c shops.

[quote=“Toe Tag”]There are “upconverting” DVD players that resample DVDs up to 720p HDTV. The oppo and the IOGEAR Linkplayer2 are popular. Ratlung, how do you like your Panasonic projector? I assume its native 720p. I fantasize about getting one from pricejapan.com. Sometimes I wonder if its not easier to just drive a projector straight out of the computer however.
[/quote]

The Panasonic PT-AE700U is a wonderful projector. Native 1280x720 resolution. It is quiet, and excepts almost any input signal. But I am running out of sources here. I do use my Linux PC to watch movies on it. Xine upscales DVD’s just fine. The PC is connected to the projector via DVI2HDMI, works just great without any problems, although, you need a good cable, if you don’t want to have the computer right next to the projector. Nowadays I have an XBox hooked up to it. And as 5566 mentioned, XBMC upscales everything just fine to 1080i. No complains there, and the XBox can do many more things than a regular DVD player.

Do you have any places in mind where you can get HDTV quality sources on the web? Do you mean the WMVHD movies?

I gave up on standard cable long time ago. After I saw it at a friends place. Digital cable might be another option, but there you won’t get 720p either.

[quote=“Toe Tag”]
That leaves satellite dishes. Anyone know if satellite can provide HDTV? I mean the satellites we can receive in Taiwan. In the USA, DirecTV satellite and Comcast cable have a half dozen or more HDTV channels. I imagine Europe and Japan have as much or more programming.[/quote]

I guess sateliteTV could answer such a question. But to my knowledge, HDTV is pretty much limited to Japan and the U.S.A. so far. They are starting in Germany/Europe for the Soccer World Championship. Would love to see it here as well.

[quote=“igorveni”]I think the only reason why you would get an HDTV nowadays is if at the same time you buy a real kickass HD DVD player so that you can watch really nice quality image DVD movies. Or you watch NHK which broadcast in HD.
I wonder when will Taiwan have HD TV channels?[/quote]

Has anybody seen HD DVD players in TW, or Blueray Disc players? Maybe even more important HD DVD discs with some good movies?

[quote=“ratlung”][quote=“igorveni”]I think the only reason why you would get an HDTV nowadays is if at the same time you buy a real kickass HD DVD player so that you can watch really nice quality image DVD movies. Or you watch NHK which broadcast in HD.
I wonder when will Taiwan have HD TV channels?[/quote]

Has anybody seen HD DVD players in TW, or Blueray Disc players? Maybe even more important HD DVD discs with some good movies?[/quote]
Nope, not here in Taiwan. They sell some HD DVDs (WMV format) in Germany though, but selection is limited.

Yes, they do sell HD DVD player here. Go on Bo Ai Road, in front of the Taipei Main Station. I am looking at buying a Home Theater and it is the best place to do so, they’ve got very good deals.

[quote=“Rascal”][quote=“ratlung”][quote=“igorveni”]I think the only reason why you would get an HDTV nowadays is if at the same time you buy a real kickass HD DVD player so that you can watch really nice quality image DVD movies. Or you watch NHK which broadcast in HD.
I wonder when will Taiwan have HD TV channels?[/quote]

Has anybody seen HD DVD players in TW, or Blueray Disc players? Maybe even more important HD DVD discs with some good movies?[/quote]
Nope, not here in Taiwan. They sell some HD DVDs (WMV format) in Germany though, but selection is limited.[/quote]

I have two of those, but they only work under Windows. :s