You’ve been hearing those terms more and more lately, and many people know roughly what they mean, but not exactly.

I once picked it up:

High Definition DVD.
An alternative standard for Blu-ray has been developed by Toshiba and NEC and has been approved by the DVD Forum as a standard and thus may use the name DVD in its name. The original name was AOD (Advanced Optical Disc), but it has since been changed to HD DVD. Like the Blu-ray technology, HD DVD uses a blue laser with a wavelength of 405nm. The discs used for recording are physically similar to DVD discs as they, like DVD, use a 0.6mm top layer. This allows the HD DVD discs to be made with current equipment. For HD-DVD, 3 different versions are under development: HD DVD-ROM, pre-recorded discs with a capacity of 15GB per side. These can be used for the release of movies. HD DVD-RW, with 20GB recordable space per side and rewritable. HD DVD-R , write-once with a capacity of 15GB per side

The Blu-ray
Is a technology platform that can store images and sound in high quality, while the stored data is easy to use. This technique is also recognized as a standard. This will become important in the future broadband era where data distribution will be increasingly different. The ten companies involved will respectively design products that will make full use of the large capacity and high transfer speed of the Blu-ray discs. These are higher than those of HD DVD. The Blu-ray discs from Philips will be available in different versions, the single layer discs will contain 25 GB of data and the double layer discs double, namely 50 GB. According to Sony, the creator of the Blu-ray DVD format, Blu Ray discs with four to 8 layers will be released in 2007, which will allow an incredible capacity of 200GB of data to be burned onto a disc.
Three types of Blu-ray discs will be available, the BD-ROM is a read-only disc for software and movie distribution, the BD-R can be written to once with data and the BD-RE can be written several times .

HDTV – High Definition Television
High Definition Television (HDTV) is an extension of digital television, and is seen as the new television standard. In the past, there were only two choices: analog and digital. As you may know, analog is prone to interference and ghosting, and digital television, although these issues have been addressed, can be technically compressed, which does not always achieve optimum picture quality. However, digital television makes interactive television possible and increases the number of channels available. Digital is now becoming HD TV. HD TV offers unparalleled picture quality, the most realistic ever. Much better image quality
Incredibly full colors
Fantastic sharp image
Breathtaking details
Widescreen broadcasts
5.1 Dolby® Digital sound (region specific)

How does High Definition television work?
HDTV images contain more data than the conventional standard resolution. This extra data results in a richer picture with more detail and clarity, with the added benefit of better sound quality. There is a range of broadcast standards, the most common of which are 720p and 1080i. Conventional television is made up of 480 lines, as opposed to the 720 or 1080 of High Definition. The increase in the number of lines provides a much sharper image, with a higher resolution. Video with 1080 lines does require more bandwidth for the transmitter, and is more expensive to produce than 720 lines. With an interlaced image (1080i), the image is formatted in two stages, first the odd lines and then the even lines. With a progressive image (720p), the image is drawn line by line. This creates a smoother and more stable image. This ensures that the difference between 1080i and 720p is not great, despite the higher resolution of 1080i. At 1080P, 1080 lines are drawn, so that is 360 more than at 720P and ensure an even smoother and more stable image. The difference between 720P and 1080P is visible. However, progressive image uses twice as much bandwidth as interlaced image. HDTV uses digital video encoding called MPEG-2, which is also applied to DVD and digital television. However, the technology has evolved further. This has led to new formats such as MPEG-4 and Windows Media® 9, which make encoding and bandwidth usage more efficient. This makes more TV channels available, more films fit on a disc and the images are of higher quality.

How can I receive High Definition?
You can receive High Definition in several ways, but some of these ways are not available in Europe.
On January 1, 2004, a new HDTV service called Euro 1080 was introduced on the Astra satellite network. This service consists of two channels, Main and Event, which currently broadcast concerts and children’s programs. Euro 1080 has broadcast certain football matches of the 2004 European Football Championships. This requires a special HDTV decoder and satellite dish. DVD has become extremely popular, and the quality of DVD is much better than that of conventional videocassette. It even exceeds the quality of digital television. But the quality of DVD can also be surpassed.
Sony has a collection of Superbit DVDs, all from Columbia TriStar and encoded at double the bit rate, resulting in greater detail and higher resolution. In addition, several movies on DVD have been released in Windows Media® 9 format (HD-WMV), a significant improvement over existing DVD formats
In the future, HDTV may also become part of the digital television network, but broadcasters have yet to decide on the precise schedule and content

Hopefully this will help julie. At least I now know what HD DVD, Blu Ray and HDTV mean.

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