High-definition television (HDTV)

HDTV has experienced enormous success the past years, driven by the consumer electronics market and its shift from CRT-based television sets to LCD-, plasma- and LED- based TV screens. As HDTV is now starting to be adopted in the video surveillance arena it promises outstanding image quality compared to analog CCTV systems.

HDTV provides up to five times higher resolution than standard analog TV. HDTV also has better color fidelity and a 16:9 format. Defined by SMPTE (Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers), the two most important HDTV standards are SMPTE 296M and SMPTE 274M.

  • SMPTE 296M (HDTV 720P) defines a resolution of 1280x720 pixels with high color fidelity in a 16:9 format using progressive scanning at 25/30 Hertz (Hz)—which corresponds to 25 or 30 frames per second, depending on the country—and 50/60 Hz (50/60 fps).
  • SMPTE 274M (HDTV 1080) defines a resolution of 1920x1080 pixels with high color fidelity in a 16:9 format using either interlaced or progressive scanning at 25/30 Hz and 50/60Hz.

A camera that complies with the SMPTE standards indicates adherence to HDTV quality and should provide all the benefits of HDTV in resolution, color fidelity and frame rate.

HDTVs are based on square pixels—similar to computer screens, so HDTV video from network video products can be shown on either HDTV screens or standard computer monitors. With progressive scan HDTV video, no conversion or deinterlacing technique needs to be applied when the video is to be processed by a computer or displayed on a computer screen.

See also: HDTV (High Definition Television) and video surveillance 

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