NTSC and PAL in Hi-Def!! I don’t think so

NTSC or PAL Operation in High Definition Video

Lets start off by saying there is no such thing as NTSC or PAL in the High Definition video world.  Just scan rate differences.

NTSC and PAL standards are color methods and scan/refresh rates that have their origin in the analog domain.  Their corollary does however have a bridge to Digital Television (DTV) in the form of the well established DVD, DV video and SDTV video standards.  In this case they do exhibit the distinctive scan rates and frame resolutions as defined in their respective standard: – NTSC as 720 dots x 480 lines at 29.97fps and PAL as 720 dots x576 lines at 25fps.

Digital video output from HD camcorders or Blu ray players on the other hand using the HDMI output port only produce screen resolutions, scan types and refresh rates that are unique to High Definition video.

While it’s true down converted video output from a Blu ray player for example that uses the analog S-video or composite outputs must conform to the NTSC or PAL standards respectively to be shown properly on those video displays that have limited or restrictive modes of output operation like NTSC or PAL only modes.

Blu ray players and High Definition camcorders for example only offer two frame resolutions and a number of refresh rates in either interlaced or progressive modes (excluding SDTV and EDTV functionality).

1920 x 1080    24fps, 25fps, 30fps. — Progressive scan
or 50 or 60 fields/sec, —  Interlaced scan

1280 x 720      24fps, 25fps, 30fps, 50fps, 60fps    Progressive scan only

Short form designation will show up as 1080i or 1080p, or 720p

Blu ray video supports full 1920x1080i or p scan modes in either H.264 or MPEG-2 video, along with HDV standard at 1440x1080i or p modes in MPEG-2 only.

To run PAL per se in HD is to choose 25fps encoding or operational mode (must have video display that can handle this frame or field rate).

The option of running in 24fps is to take advantage to the exact film frame rate for studio movie productions without a pull-down to emulate the film look on a HD video display.


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