High Definition TV

  Dellman 14:50 08 Jan 2007

TV Drive/Telewest

I understand that I can get HD programming via Cable (TelePest...ooops Telewest)but to do so would need to get a new box - TV Drive.

Is this any good. What % of programming can I expect to get as High Definition? Is the TV Drive for recording as good as Sky+? Is this worth an additional £10 per month (+£75 installation charge if existing box not retained (as second box) at additional monthly fee of £5)

  GANDALF <|:-)> 15:05 08 Jan 2007

Recently I've been to a demo of HD vs Ordinary TV. It was in a studio and not over the airwaves and used two identical Sony LCD TVs'. I have to say that, although I have eyes like an ocelot on steroids, I did not notice that much difference when casually looking. If you really studied the HD picture (which is something that no one does when watching a 2 hour documentary) there was a slight difference in that HD was sharper but this made it look totally unreal. The demo only lasted an hour or so but it convinced me that I will not be paying for HD...if it were free I would entertain it but it does look so unreal. You have to remeber that you are viewing images that would be sharper than if you saw them yourself.


  Mr Mistoffelees 15:16 08 Jan 2007

I have not seen HD for myself, except when I downloaded a couple of very short demos from the BBC and watched them on the PC. I am on Sky and I think the extra charges, against the very limited number of HD channels, mean it is just not worth it. Perhaps in a couple of years time it will be worthwhile.

  premier man 15:24 08 Jan 2007

Has anybody got HD TV,and is it worth the cost,
like Mr Mistoffelees I do not think it is worth it,there do not appear to be that many programs that are HD

  AlanHo 15:39 08 Jan 2007

I have a Toshiba 42" HD TV with a screen resolution of 1920 x 1080. I also have a Telewest cable HD TVDrive.

I can switch between freeview and cable to compare the standard TV picture quality on the same channels and can say without any hesitation that the picture from cable is far superior. The BBC and ITV channels broadcast in widescreen are really excellent.

At present there is only one channel on Telewest broadcasting in HD - mainly the same nature programmes and some dramas repeated each day. However, yesterday the soccer match between Man Utd and Aston Villa was broadcast on BBC1 and the BBC HD channel at the same time which gave me the opportunity to compare freeview, standard cable and HD cable directly.

The freeview picture was quite good, the standard cable a little better but the HD picture was awesome.

It would appear that we are going to have to wait for at least a couple of years before Telewest catch up with Sky on HD broadcasts. Paying extra for the TVDrive can really only be justified if you need the hard drive recording facility - a feature which I find very useful.

  Dellman 16:54 08 Jan 2007

Looks like the jury is still out....

...any more opinions?

  Dellman 16:58 08 Jan 2007

Also....I have a Toshiba....but I think that the HD resolution is only at 720 (although it can accomidate 1080, I think????)....would that have any bearing on the HD picture quality I can expect to get?

  Stuartli 17:49 08 Jan 2007

The difference between standard and high definition transmissions (NOT demos) is that of chalk and cheese.

Try watching a football match in high definition - the difference will astound most people.

  AlanHo 09:01 09 Jan 2007


I have a 42WLT66 which has the 1080i line resolution I mentioned. There are currently very few LCD TV's on the UK market with full 1920 x 1080 pixel resolution - most are 1280 x 720 or 1360 x 768 but can scale the HD transmission to fit. Plasma screens are often 1020 X 720 pixels.

As a comparison the current UK 625 line transmission displays a picture having 720 x 576 pixels.

  wee eddie 09:15 09 Jan 2007

All you get is more pixels horizontally and vertically.

As manufacturers attempt to sell you bigger, and bigger, screens, HD becomes a necessity. Because, if you spread the old number of pixels across the new screen it becomes pixelated and no-one would bother to buy one.

In other words: It's capitalism at it's very best, persuading you to buy something you don't need (HD) so that you can buy a bigger one (Screen) later on.

  jack 09:18 09 Jan 2007

There are I suspect so many variables from local reception/cable, material made for HD and/or existing enhanced for it. and last be but not at all least the condition of our eyes.
As we get older our vision is less acute and differences become -- er blurred --
I have recently come by[free] a digital cable for my Philips LCD screen.
Having installed it- the MSI Graphics card set up a software toggle switch so that the Analogue/Digital output can be toggled.
I have to say I can see no appreciable difference.
But then I am in my eighth decade with incipient cataracts[Not ripe enough to do any thing about]

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