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Differences between 1080p 720p 1080i Television Sets

Updated on July 14, 2009

What do the "p" and "i" stand for in high definition television sets?

These letters stand for the way the television displays the image. The "p" stands for "progressive" meaning the image is displayed progressively, when displayed the image is "painted" vertically starting with line one then two, three, and so. The "i" stands for "interlaced" which is how the image is displayed. These images are shown vertically starting with line one then three then two then four, and so on. The image is interlaced at such a high speed the human eye cannot decipher the independent images tricking the brain.


What do the "numbers" stand for?

The "numbers" stand for the frame size in pixels. 720p has a frame size of 1280*720, 1080p has a frame size of 1920*1080, and 1080i has aframe size of 1920*1080. In theory the 1080p should be a much better TV since it displays twice the amount of pixels but the human eye really cannot see the difference unless you are very, very close to the set.

Is 1080p the best in HDTV?

In a technological sense it is the newest, thus making it the best. But, most people cannot tell the difference in picture quality when displayed in 720p, 1080p, or 1080i. So the only real difference may be the price. I have not seen a 1080p HDTV that has looked better than a 720p HDTV.

Which format should I buy?

When searching for a new HDTV I would tend to shy away from the in store salesmen since they are usually only looking for a commision. Online customer reviews are normally a good place to start a search for a new television. Buying online is also normally much cheaper but, seeing the television in person can also be helpful. I own a 1080i Samsung HDTV and love the picture quality, it recieves many compliments when entertaining friends.


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