HDTV Cable in HK?

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  1. #21

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    Satellite couldn't do that at reasonable expense.

    You seem to be unlucky with your connections. When I had i-cable it was basically the same quality as the UK (NTL) service I was familiar with previously. NOW is more or less the same apart from an occasional (meaning maybe once an hour or so) pixellation or freeze for a couple of seconds. For the tiny amount of money I'm paying I reckon it's pretty good value.


  2. #22

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    Never been that impressed with NOW's video quality. Pixelation occurs often during fast motion sequences and is not at regular intervals of once or twice an hour. Yes I've had their engineers out (three times) and they confirmed that this as good as it gets. What I pay is not a small amount in relation to everything else in Asia's WC and digital is digital so less of this you get what you pay for attitude. Shame that CableTV charge nearly double as their video quality five years ago was betterthan NOW's today. And their sets can be programmed and their remotes have a 'back' button blah blah blah.


  3. #23

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    my connection in Whampoa Garden was absolutely trash.....it was constant freezing, skipping frames, picxelation, green pixels, etc...

    since moving to PI, I have found quality is improved, but still not equal to my cable tv back in Boston and NJ/NY.

    Whats interesting though...is that some channels are great, and some really bad. For example, all my HBO and Cinemax channels are really fuzzy, pixely, freezing, etc, where as NatGeo and Discovery come in crystal clear.


  4. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by CrouchingDonkey
    Does anyone know when in 2007, Digital TV will be rolled out?
    A new announcement of further field trials: http://www.ofta.gov.hk/en/broadcast/testUHFchannels.pdf

  5. #25

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    Quote Originally Posted by PDLM
    A new announcement of further field trials: http://www.ofta.gov.hk/en/broadcast/testUHFchannels.pdf
    Thanks for that PDLM. At least we now know full roll-out won't be until at least August, based on the end date of the test period.

    They list on the pdf document, 6 transmitters. Does the 6 cover all of HK, including the New Territories, or are there more, but aren't being tested during this period. *Sorry for my ignorance*

    I'm guessing, if and when NOW introduce a HDTV service, they'll simply upscale SDTV programmes, like the initial launches in USA and UK. It would cost them too much to re-buy old content they have rights to broadcast already, at the new HD standard. I'm not so bothered if it's free, but I wouldn't subscribe to upscaled repeats/reruns, much less the chopped-up-movie channels. It would be nice to watch stuff like HD National Geographic and the like.

  6. #26

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    thats the only channelk i want right now in HD....all the others i seldom watch anyways


  7. #27

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    just thinking...is satelite TV in HD?
    and if yes...can i get an HDTV Satelite subscription from USA or UK to work in HK?


  8. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by mattstewart
    just thinking...is satelite TV in HD?
    and if yes...can i get an HDTV Satelite subscription from USA or UK to work in HK?
    Back in the days when enthusiasts installed huge 12ft satellite dishes in their back yards, I don't know how that system worked, but I'm confident it was all standard-definition (SDTV) back then.

    Nowadays in the US, subscription satellite services like DirecTV and DishNetwork employ geosynchronous (sp?)satellites... in other words, several satellites orbit such that their position is always in a fixed position above the north american skies.

    That's a "No" answer to subscribing to a US service and attempting to aim a dish in HK to receive it. If Europe has a similar system, I don't think HK has a line-of-sight to those satellites either.

    That said, these satellites are capable of carrying high-def content. DirecTV is reported to launch additional satellites to specifically handle high-definition. The US subscriber will have to upgrade their satellite dish and set-top receiver to receive HD.

    All is not rosy with high-definition through satellite or cable. These providers often over-compress the already-compressed HD signals in order to squeeze more channels into their limited bandwidth. Do a web search and it shouldn't be hard to find subscribers voicing their dissatisfaction. The TV ads promise "1080i" resolution, but the over-compressed results fall short. Is it better than DVD (480i/p) though? Yes.

    In my experience, the best HDTV is pulled from an Over-The-Air broadcast (OTA). This of course, presumes the broadcasting station is pushing beautiful HD content.

    In Chicago, the tallest building sports a pair of HD antennas to broadcast HDTV throughout the region. Viewers in a 50 mile radius have reported being able to capture a decent HD signal provided they use one of the larger rooftop antennas. The HD signal is best received by an antenna that has a line-of-sight to the broadcast tower. Hong Kong's tall buildings will make this problematic for the solitary HD broadcast antenna being installed in 2007 in Kowloon.

    I began reading this thread in February as an aunt asked me to help furnish her HK flat with an HDTV. The early posts here helped shed some light on the state of Hong Kong's progress. (thanks guys)

    When I arrived in March, I found there was still a lot of unresolved issues. One of the electronics store clerks mentioned HK's first HDTV tower might be installed in July, a post in this thread indicates August is more likely.

    Here are some additional hurdles that I think will apply to many...

    1.) With that first HDTV tower, pray that your building's roof is taller than your surrounding neighbors' so that your antenna can "see" that broadcast tower unobstructed.

    Forget about attempting to use an indoor-directional/amplified antenna to pick up HDTV. It'll be a waste of time and money. I've already gone this route and will spare you the boring details.

    2.) If you ARE obstructed by several buildings, rotate the rooftop antenna in hopes of catching a HDTV signal bouncing off a building. Yes, HDTV signals are highly directional and this has been known to work.

    3.) Should #1 and #2 fail, wait until Hong Kong installs a greater number of HDTV towers in 2008. This will increase your chances of aiming the antenna at an unobscured tower.

    During my HK stay in March, I was still eager to pick out an HDTV set figuring it'll be worthwhile to have something in-place while the broadcast issues get settled. After a couple days shopping, I've concluded it's the absolute worst time to buy HDTV in Hong Kong. The main reasons?

    A.) As of March, apparently NONE of the HDTV sets sold in Hong Kong have a digital tuner for receiving the HD signal. The explaination given was that HK/China hadn't yet finalized the technicals or specific flavors of HD they'll use. By contrast in the US, most HDTV sets feature both an NTSC tuner for old analog channels and ATSC tuner for digital HDTV channels. This means any Hong Kong HDTV purchased around March 2007 will eventually need to be fed by a seperate digital tuner in order to take advantage of digital broadcast slowly being put in place.

    B.) The newness of HDTV in Hong Kong clearly has an "early adopter" penalty. Low sales volume of brand-name HDTVs mean high prices. Without high-def signals to "WOW" the viewing public, sales will remain low. In the states, I acquired a couple 32" 720p and 46" 1080p Samsungs at $1200 and $2600usd respectively. Nearly identical models shopped in Hong Kong (Fortress & Broadway) fetched $1400 and $4600usd pricetags. The larger the set, the more the countries price difference skyrockets -- AND remember, the HK sets are without digital tuners.

    The advice I gave my aunt? Wait & save your money. I'm hoping that HongKong/China will get their act together and at least have a functioning HDTV broadcast system by the time the Beijing Olympics start. This would spur vendors to carry HDTV sets featuring a proper built-in digital tuner. If this happens soon, I'll schedule another trip to HK and finish the assigned task.

    CTG

  9. #29

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    An update on this from OFTA today: http://www.ofta.gov.hk/en/press_rel/...n_2007_r2.html


  10. #30

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    Regarding the HDTV, now I have a DVD player where the TV tuner is hooked. Does that mean i need an encoder box also to connect into my DVD Player so that I can watch HDTV?

    So far they only mentioned direct connection to TV.


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