Sunday, 9 January 2011

Disappointing digital TV

Yesterday Jenny and I decided that we needed to replace the old CRT TV in the living room with a digital TV, in anticipation of the digital switchover which will happen later this year.  We didn't want a vast TV which dominates the room - if we want to watch stuff in big, we have a 5 foot by 3 foot pull-down screen and a ceiling-mounted projector which we can use - so the new TV needed only to be a similar size to the old one, which I measured at 20 inches diagonally.

In the shop we found a 22 inch TV which seemed to meet our requirements, so bought that, but on installing it, we were disappointed to find that the picture was noticeably smaller than on the old one.

Only then did we think about the fact that the new TV is of widescreen format.  Its aspect ratio is 16:9 compared with the old box's 4:3, so measuring across the diagonal, which is how TVs are sized, wasn't helpful.  What I should have done, had I thought of it, was measure the height of the old TV and make sure the new one was similar to that, which would have given me a perceived picture size the same as the old one.

In all the chatter about the digital switchover, this is not something I've heard mentioned at all, and I think there are going to be a lot of disappointed owners of shiny new digital TVs this year.

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