Sunday, September 30, 2001

The Phantom Menace coming on DVD

I think everyone is anticipating the upcoming release of this movie on DVD, well, except for all the Jar-Jar scenes anyways. There is an excellent preview/review of this disk on Wide Screen Review, see: The Phantom Menace Review

The best part may be in the DVD Special features: deleted scenes that have been brought up to full production/CGI to make for a finished scenes (George Lucas spent alot of time on this part) as well as an excellent 66 minute documentary about the production of this movie.

This one is definitely on my "Must Have" list.


Friday, September 21, 2001

JVC Announces 'HDVideo' Recorder Capable of HDTV Recording and Playback

According to the "I Love HDTV Newsletter":

JVC is introducing a new D-VHS format digital recorder, the HM-DH30000U, which is capable of recording HDTV broadcasts at full quality. Its D-VHS HS (High Speed) mode operates at a 28.2 Mbps data transfer rate, more than fast enought for the 19.3 Mbps needed for ATSC HDTV broadcasts with 50 GigaByte of storage capacity per cassette which provides 4 hours of full HD recording on a single cassette*, it will be possible to record an entire feature-length HD movie without having to change tapes midway. This model also features the D-VHS STD mode (14.1 Mbps transfer rate) for standard-definition digital recording in MPEG2 format, and the LS3 mode (4.7 Mbps transfer rate) which enables an incredible 24 hours of MPEG2 digital recording per cassette*. Although D-VHS is a totally digital recording technology separate from analog VHS, with the HM-DH30000U's multi-format recording/playback capability, users will be able record and view in analog VHS, Super VHS, and Super VHS ET, in addition to digital D-VHS.


Saturday, September 15, 2001

All HDTV Sports Network Web site

For those of you interested in the details and the schedule for the new all HDTV sports network available to Direct TV subscribers, check out HD Net.

Not even HDTV makes it palatable...

The events of September 11th were terrible beyond comprehension. I haven't been posting because like many of you, I've been fixated on the terrible tragedy that has befallen New York and Washington. What a horrible and senseless loss of life for nothing more than mindless hatred and zealotry.

Interestingly enough, I've been noticing that MOST of the really good reporting has been from sources like NPR Radio News and BBC World News. The reporting is much less sensationalistic, better researched and better thought out than the short sighted, all too visually oriented tabloid journalism that has unfortunately become the norm on TV.

I guess back to the routine, we ALL need to get back to our normal lives as best we can. Here are some posts though somehow they all seem pretty unimportant and rather frivilous in the grand scheme of things...

FAQ has some new info and updates too.

Setting up for recieving Over the Air HDTV broadcasts

This used to be a real chore when there were relatively few HDTV tuners available (and not really worth the effort considering how little native HDTV programming was actually available) but with ABC and CBS offering so much more in native HDTV this upcoming season and the advent of many more HDTV stations coming on line, it may now be really worth the effort.

Home Theater Magazine online has a nice article on Receiving OTA HDTV Broadcasts.


Wednesday, September 12, 2001

A truly Terrible day in American History

What can I say but that the 11th of September 2001 has been a day beyond rational comprehension.

I can only hope that reason will prevail in the end and that justice will be served. The hatred and rage in my heart is tempered only by the feeling of sorrow for those who have perished and for those who have lost loved ones today. I hope justice will be swift and precise though as we know, this is often not the case. Only time will tell whether reason and civility will prevail over mindless zealotry and bigotry.

My world, and that of all Americans (my Arab American friends as well, do not let the impulse for rash bigotry exclude them!!) as been changed forever by the infamy that has occurred today.
No other news is relevant. Only sadness today.


George Lucas on Digital Filmaking

Here is an interesting story on Sound and Vision Online about Digital Filmaking. There is a provacative quote from George Lucas where he states that “I will never, ever make another film, on film.” referring to his complete convergence to using Digital Filmaking equipment/HDTV Cameras for film production.

An interesting read about some of the technical details of digital filmaking.


Friday, September 07, 2001

Lots of HDTV Programming for the Fall season on CBS and ABC

CBS has always been on the cutting edge of HDTV programming and they're pushing the envelope again according to this Yahoo News article which says that CBS in conjunction with Panasonic will offer all 18 of its primetime comedies and dramas in High Definition in the upcoming 2001-2002 television season providing an average of nearly 24 hours of HD programming per week this fall. See the article above for CBS's tentative fall programming schedule in HDTV.

ABC made a similar announcement as outlined in this New York Times article. About 60 percent of their on air programming is expected to be produced in HDTV. For you sports fans, ABC hopes to have production capabilities in place by next year that would allow "Monday Night Football" to be regularly broadcast in HDTV.

Both networks have commited to producing all filmed programming in HDTV. Lower production value programming will still be filmed in standard definition video and probably transmitted in upconverted SDTV as they do currently. This is excellent news for HDTV fans, maybe now we'll finally hit critical mass and HDTV will really take off...time to sneak up onto the roof of my Condo and hook up a better antenna.

I do wonder where NBC is in all of this, sitting on their SDTV laurels?

More details on Mark Cuban's HDNet all HDTV Sports station

This came out Wednesday on Yahoo but I was working so I didn't get around to posting it but here you go: HDTV Network to Debut.

Olympics coverage in HDTV?!!!! Nice!

Did anyone catch their first broadcast? If so, how did it look?


Wednesday, September 05, 2001

Good article about Progressive Scan DVD Players

I have gotten many e-mails asking about how well progressive scan players would work with the Aconda and I always reference back to this Home Theater Magazine article that I read (in the print version) awhile back. Well, the article on Progressive Scan or Progressive Scam? The truth behind progressive-scan DVD players is now on line in their Archives section. Good reading and an excellent primer for those starting out.

Micro$oft X-Box to support HDTV

But you'll have to pay for it as it is an add on component called the Xbox High Definition AV Pack. The real question is if there will be any software available that will support HDTV resolutions?

The AV Pack apparently will also put out Dolby Digital 5.1 signals via a TOS link (Optical digital output) as well. You know, with the DVD Movie Playback Kit and this AV Pack, this could be your bargain Home Theater PC. Hopefully it is more stable than windows...

New all HDTV Sport Channel coming real soon...

Check out this TVinsite Article about HDNet a new all HDTV Sports channel that is planning to debut on Direct TV this Thursday with a baseball game.

This is a GREAT use for HDTV, I wonder why ESPN hasn't seen the potential here for a pay-per view/subscriber model for HDTV sports coverage? They are always griping about lost revenue to bars that show their games on a big screen (that usually looks pretty lousy, you know how well bars maintain their mediocre projection TV's...). Up the ante and really make it worth while to pay for ESPN footage...