Recording Resolutions---flim flam?

Could anyone who “knows” confirm or correct my following understanding of dvd recording resolutions? For many (most?) applications, I think we have been wasting alot of dvd space?===>

I have a old 42 inch rear projection Panasonic big screen. When I watch tv, or vcr tapes, or commercial dvd’s the pictures all look the same to me. When I first started burning dvd’s myself about a year ago I went thru all the different bit settings and resolutions and found that the Liteon Stand Alone units recording at the lowest setting (352 X 240 at 1150bits/sec) was just as good as anything else so I have been using that setting for recording tv to dvd’s from my comcast cable system.

Now I’m looking to upgrade to high def and I’ve gone thru the above process again. Still NO DIFFERENCE when looking at resolutions thru my TV==but I see a real difference when looking at the same comparisons on my computer screen (currently set at 1024 x 728)==sure enough, the higher the resolution, the better the image looks. I “know” this difference is lost when viewing on tv and I now assume it will show up when viewing these discs on my future high def tv??

This leads me to wonder if I should now record my “favorite” movies in full dvd mode (720 x 480 at 2 hours per dvd). This will be a waste of space currently but when I get high def THEN and only then the higher resolutions of my recorded movies will be apparent? ((Is this right?))

My final question then is whether or not the standard dvd will be enough of an improvement to keep me happy or should I understand that high def is still 4-5 times sharper than standard dvd and more importantly that this difference will be noticeable when played on a high definition tv??? I would like to avoid the situation of paying for high def recordings that don’t look that much different from standard dvds==cost of storage (ie recording media) could be significant.


Other questions still bouncing around==> which has higher resolution and is it actually “noticeable”==720p or 1080i? I can’t tell from what I read how close in actual viewing pleasure these two are. Seems the reviews just say look and choose what you like.

How does an “up coding” dvd player figure into this? Does a “standard” dvd look that much better when played on a high def unit or is it just marketing hype??

All of the above will become know thru trial and error but any thoughts/directions/hints will be appreciated. Thanks. /// bobbo.

A standard TV screen only scans at around 400x300 lines of resolution maximum. Some VERY NICE ones might go a bit higher. Therefore yes, you aren’t likely to see the difference between 352x240 and 720x480… provided that the 352x240 is well-encoded using good bitrate.

That’s the effect you’re seeing. I hear lots of people saying things like ‘SVCD looks as good as DVD’, and on their TV they are correct. People bash them sometimes - “are you blind?” and stuff like that - but the truth is that they (like you) don’t own a playback medium with high enough resolution to take advantage of DVD resolution.

On the other hand, the minute you upgrade to High-Def (or just a good widescreen or WEGA) you’ll see the difference and appreciate having things encoded at 720x480.

Thanks Gurm==I think “I” am one of those who have been so slammed–but I was pulling the tail of the tiger and expected same.

I started recording some of my favorite movies in the 352x480 format and then I remembered one of my other “issues:” as long as my source is basic cable running ntsc==isn’t it right that the signal itself is only “standard tv quality?” and encoding at higher than about 352x240 is just wasting space on the dvd ===>even when later playing these disks on a high def tv?–ie–the original signal doesn’t have the resolution either.

I’m thinking of going with a high def Comcast service right now and recording stuff at 720x480==not high def but a pretty good picture and 4 times sharper than standard tv?

I don’t think I need more until “virtual reality” is actually here.

Thanks for your confirmation.////bobbo.

Yeah, “standard cable” often doesn’t even max out the capabilities of standard TV screens.

352x480 is plenty for most TV encodes.