Posts tagged ‘hd’

The White Dashes at the Top of a TV Picture

By Chad Upton | Editor

They may appear as rapidly flashing dots, dashes, lines or boxes across the top of your TV screen.

The white lines are more prevalent on HDTVs, although they can show on older standard definition sets too.

They often appear while watching an HD channel that is broadcasting a standard definition signal, which frequently happens during commercial breaks and shows that are not available in high definition.

The lines are supposed to be there, you’re just not supposed to see them. If you have seen them, they will vary in size and shape depending on your TV.

These lines are like barcodes embedded in the picture. Closed captioning, teletext and programming guide information is represented by these white lines. Your TV can interpret them and display the information in a format that you can read.

Although this primarily affects HDTVs, it stems from variances in old Tube TVs (Cathode Ray Tubes). In the early days of television, there were extreme variances in production of television sets — some would cut off more of the picture than others.

Broadcasters overcame this problem by trying to keep all titles and important actions away from the very edges of the screen, in case they were cut off on some TVs. That extra space that you don’t see is called the overscanned image (because of the way that CRTs would paint an image on the screen by scanning side to side sixty times per second).

The overscan area became a good place to hide extra information when closed captioning data was added to TV signals.

HDTV signals do not overscan. Their signals are newer and were designed to encapsulate extra information from the beginning. But, you may still see these lines on an HDTV if the broadcaster is showing content that has the lines.

Most good televisions have the option to adjust overscan, including hdtvs. You’ll have to consult your manual, but this option will allow you to adjust the picture so the white lines are not visible.

Broken Secrets

Subscribe on: Facebook | Twitter | Kindle

Sources: Wikipedia (Safe area, Overscan)

August 20, 2010 at 5:00 am 1 comment

YouTube URL Secrets

It used to be, when you wanted to share a video, you’d attach it to an email and send it out to your friends.

Now when you want to share a video, you find the video on youtube and send a link — that keeps everybody’s inbox from filling up.

Change the Starting Position

Sometimes, you’ll want to make sure your friends see exactly what you’re talking about. To start the video at a specific spot, you can append “#t=MMmSSs” to the end of the url (link). You’ll replace the uppercase Ms with the number of minutes and the uppercase Ss with the number of seconds in the video where you want playback to begin.

For example, if I want to jump to the 2 minute, 39 second point in a video, then I would add “#t2m39s” to the end of the URL (example:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L_HkH8huuzA#t=2m39s)

This trick also works for embedding a video. Although, when embedding use “&start” instead of “#t” and it’s in seconds only. (example http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L_HkH8huuzA&start=159). Try playing the following video, it will start near the end.

High Definition

Many YouTube videos are now available in HD. To ensure you link to the HD version, append “&fmt=22” to the end of the url. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L_HkH8huuzA&fmt=22)

Download Video

Maybe you want to transfer a video to your iPod or laptop for offline playback. If you load a video in youtube, you can swap out “youtube” for “keephd” in the URL. If there is a forward slash “/” after “watch” then you may want to remove that as well. This new url will take you to keephd.com and it will give you links to download the youtube video.

Broken Secrets | By: Chad Upton

Subscribe on: Facebook | Twitter | Kindle

Sources: Make Use Of, Ampercent

June 30, 2010 at 5:00 am 3 comments

How to Get Free HDTV Channels

When I say free, I don’t mean free with your paid cable or satellite package.  I mean 100% free without paying for any service.

When television broadcasting began in North America, the broadcasts were completely free. The costs associated with producing TV were covered by program sponsors (advertisers). TV signals were received over the air, so all you needed was a television and an antenna (aka “rabbit ears”). This worked great at the time because TV was new and nobody knew if it was going to be successful; laying cable to distribute signals didn’t make any sense and satellites weren’t an option yet.

Once television was a proven success, viewers wanted more content on bigger and better televisions. Today, those demands haven’t changed, but the technology has.

Receiving signals over the air was not perfect, there were a limited number of channels that could fit in the airwaves. Reception was spotty, but Cable and Satellite services came along with more channels and reliable signals that didn’t require any adjustments.

The technology has changed again. The development of digital signals has allowed broadcasters to fit many channels in the same space that used to only fit one channel. Although it caused a lot of disruptions in June of 2009, the United States ceased all analog TV signals within a specific frequency range. That means the once crowded airwaves are much more useful with digital signals that can stuff more channels in the same space.

Some broadcasters have been distributing their television signal over-the-air for more than 50 years and they continue to do so, now in digital. The secret to picking up these free channels: rabbit ears.

Seriously.

To many people, this will sound like a huge step back, and in some ways it is. You’re not going to find John and Kate or Jersey Shore on the free channels, but it could be worse: you might find John and Kate or Jersey Shore on the free channels.

If you’re on a budget; or you only watch the most popular network shows; or you want to stick it to the cable-man; or you want to pickup really good HD signals on a TV without a cable box or satellite receiver, then this is an option to consider. In many cases, digital over-the-air signal quality rivals cable and satellite signals, where signals are highly compressed because of bandwidth limitations.

Digital rabbit ears are much better than the coat hangers of the past — if you’ve upgrade to a digital cordless phone in the past couple years, you’ll understand the difference in reception, reliability and clarity that digital signals offer.

Depending on where you live, your channel selection will vary. In some places, you can get 10+ HD channels and dozens of standard digital channels, all for FREE! If you live in the United States, you can enter your zipcode in AntennaWeb’s search engine to see a list of the channels you should receive. In many places, you should get most (or all) of your favorite prime time shows in free HD. All you need is an HDTV, an ATSC tuner (most HDTVs have one built in) and an antenna. Here are some examples of affordable indoor and outdoor antennas that you can buy.

BrokenSecrets.com [now available on Kindle]

Photo: Dano (cc)

January 5, 2010 at 1:27 am 14 comments


Follow Broken Secrets

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 5,754 other followers

Big Awards


Best Personal Blog/Website (People's Voice)


W3 Award - Copy Writing

Read Secrets on Your Kindle

Categories

Play Hashi Link

Featured by…

• Yahoo
• Business Insider
• NPR
• BBC
• Smithsonian Magazine
• USA Today
• AskMen (and many more...)

Contact Info


%d bloggers like this: