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Category: Video Lingo

SD – Standard Definition

SD – Standard Definition (also see “Interlaced Video” and “Resolution”) –Standard Definition video is, in short, the TV system standard that has been around since the 1940’s and that you grew up watching. Even though the quality has improved since the days of The Honeymooners and I Love Lucy, the standard is the same – pictures made of 525 lines (or rows) of video, of which only 486 are actually seen. The lines are interlaced (where the odd number rows of pixels are drawn first then the evens). This happens 30 times per second (29.97 times per second to be exact, but unless you’re a tech-head it doesn’t really matter). Standard Definition video can be either 4:3 (standard) aspect ratio or 16:9 (widescreen). If you have a DVD player you will be watching something in Standard Definition (even if it’s a widescreen movie). A BluRay disc is typically HD.

Tech-Head Note – Standard Def in America (which does differ around the world based on television standards), as we know it, is called NTSC (National Television Standards Committee) and defines the standard of how TV signals are built and transmitted. Most people don’t realize that the TV we’ve all watched (until the recent change to HD and digital transmission) was first adopted in 1941. Yep, we’ve been watching TV based on really old technology. As you all know, TV was originally black and white. In 1953 the FCC adopted changes to incorporate color TV that was backward compatible with black & white.


Resolution – The amount of detail in an image, usually expressed in the number of pixels (Picture Elements). Common computer display resolutions are XGA (1024 pixels x 768 pixels), SXGA (1280 x 1024), SXGA+ (1400 x 1050) and UXGA (1600 x 1200). Wide screen formats are typically 1280 x 768, 1920 x 1200. Even though many people will use the terms high resolution and high definition interchangeably, they may not be referring to the same thing.Resolution

RP (Rear Projection)

RP (Rear Projection) – Projection onto a large screen from the rear side of the screen. The screen surface (or skin) is a translucent surface. Advantages are that the projectors are hidden behind the screen and can be ground supported. Disadvantages are that the screen will seem brighter in certain areas depending on where people are sitting in relation to the screen (these are known as Hot Spots).

POV Camera

POV Camera – Short for Point of View camera, sometimes also called a “lipstick” cam because some are the size of a tube of lipstick. These cameras can be mounted to helmets, vehicles, railing, ceilings, you name it, and are often used to get shots that a full-sized camera requiring an operator could not. POV cameras can be wired or wireless and come in various sizes, resolutions, and quality.

LCD (Liquid Crystal Display)

LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) – A projection and display technology that uses millions of microscopic cells of liquid crystal that act as a “shutter”, allowing different amounts of light through a grid to create an image. Advantage are that LCD projectors can generate a lot of light output for a reasonable price. Disadvantage are that images typically don’t have as much color saturation or contrast as DLP. Also, optics tend to “burn” or “yellow” over time, and older projectors are rarely as bright or look as good as when they were new.