Monday, January 22, 2007

My campaign for an HDTV [Day 1]...

We watch about 10 hours of TV per week - really - I timed it. Thanks to TiVo we watch only stuff we like. But like many of you, I have a perfectly good TV to watch on.

ALL the other guys have BIG TV's however. I am being oppressed. So I have begun an intellectual campaign to convince myself that I need one of those sleek marvels in my living room. It would really help if you guys who have one write in with rapturous comments about how it has changed your life for the better.

Actually, some people are finding despite their skepticism that HDTV adds something.

But my favorite is a Discovery On Demand channel, which has a series called "Sunrise Earth." Yeah, I know what you're thinking. Put down the bong. But you need no bong to be entranced by the simplicity of the series. It takes the highest quality video cameras around the world and captures 50-minute scenes of the dawn in a variety of spots on this water-planet. There is no narration; no music; just natural sounds. Here's one review:

When seen in vivid, crystal-clear HDTV, the effect is hypnotic. Few viewers will fail to have an impulse to immediately book a flight to join the fun. After watching last night's program on the Cadillac Mountains at the Acadia National Park in Maine, I quickly checked my work schedule for vacation dates. When seen in high-def, the burnt orange skies lingering over the Maine mountains was enough to make me forget, well, nearly everything.

Again, like Kubrick's "Dawn of Man," Sunrise Earth lets the high-def pictures do the talking. There is no narrator getting in the way; only an occasional graphic reveals the location and the time of day. It's a powerful technique. By eliminating the human altogether, Sunrise Earth makes you feel like what you're seeing could be what you would have seen hundreds of years ago. It's nature unplugged.



I checked into that show, and it looks pretty cool. However, some TV producers are worried about that HDTV may actually deliver too-realistic images.

I'm going to investigate what it will take to upgrade my DirecTV subscription to HD. Their goofy website does not make this an easy task.

I'm also thinking that those puppies may go on sale after the Super Bowl.

More later.

4 comments:

Patrick said...

Ok, I will comment on the HDTV. When we built our home a couple years ago, the last item to be put in the house was a brand new 60 inch HDTV. Like you, we use a DVR and only record the shows we watch which is about 10hrs too. But, I find I only record movies or shows in HDTV. It is such a better picture, that I find it hard to even go back to analog tv. My local stations, ESPN, Discover Channel and a few others are all in HDTV format. So there is no reason to watch any of the other images. I actually find it MUCH easier to read and view the screen now...

Patrick said...

Once you set it up, plug it in, you'll never watch the old channels again.

happy tv'ing...

Patrick

Anonymous said...

I agree about Sunrise Earth. We don't get a ton of HD channels (just the networks, ESPN, PBS, and Discovery), and after we installed the unit Sunrise Earth happened to be on. My wife and I just sat there and watched it for nearly the entire hour. Sports are much better with HDTV. Being able to see primetime sitcoms in HD isn't really that valuable, but it is nice. The service for us is only $10 a month more than our other cable package - not sure how the pricing with DirecTV works.

John Phipps said...

Thanks guys - I'm getting the fever now...