High Def, Low Def and Now Ultra Low Def TV

High Definition TV is great, amazing, a must have for sports. How did we ever manage to watch soccer games without it? Unfortunately, I'm forced to remember the horror every weekend, where I move from Barcelona's glorious HDTV courtesy of GolTV HD to Boca's horrific, ultra low def, courtesy of TyC Sports.

I claim that the video quality we get from TyC for these Argentinean soccer games is lower than Low Definition. Games look, really, really bad, much worse than low definition games you see on ESPN or even Univision. I don't know why, but here's the evidence.

What follows is snapshots of my LCD TV, with signal from DirecTV, comparing High Definition to whatever this other thing is. I used my digital camera, taking pictures at max resolution.

First, a snapshot of this weekend's Barcelona Vs. Osasuna game.

Very pretty. Now here's the capture of today's glorious Boca Juniors victory over Huracán.

To highlight the differences even further, I took a picture of an actual player from each screen, of about the same size. Here they are, side by side:

Amazing, isn't it? A testament to the power of the human brain who is able to interpolate splotches of color into humans playing soccer. Given a collection of a few, anti aliased fat pixels we're able to make up people, limbs, a ball and more. Really quite something.

Now, I wonder why the signal from Argentina is so much worse than normal low definition broadcasts in the US. Is it the transformation from PAL to NTSC? Is it the satellite link uploading the signal the US? What?!


  1. Maurits van der VeenMay 29, 2011 at 12:52 AM

    Maybe it has to do with the quality of soccer being played? :-) :-)


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