Friday, February 03, 2006

Trying HD content on my new HDTV ready Samsung

Recently I decided to buy a new LCD TV, the task was a bit complicated. After a first screening based on specs (Sony, did not have their Bravia specs online and I finally obtained them by phone), I chose to see them work side by side. The Samsung, HDTV ready, with its 3000:1 contrast ratio and 500 cd/m luminosity was my choice.

The next step after finding the best possible connection to the DVD player and digital TV, was trying HD content. Currently the only way I know of getting HD content is by PCs and the XBOX 360, which I don't own.

The pc connections available on the Samsung TV are the HDMI connector with a DVI-HDMI cable (which is still a bit too pricey and my laptop, a Thinkpad T30, has no DVI) or with a standard HD15 SVGA monitor cable. I found a ten year old cable and it worked, but only with standard video resolutions. The TV has a 1366x768 16:9 capability, after some Googling, I downloaded a video card tweaking utility: Powestrip and finally managed to set the correct output.

The last challenge was obtaining HD content, this I found from Microsoft and Apple. Unfortunately you need to buy Quicktime Pro to see video full screen, so I finally stuck to trying with Windows Media Player and the result was awesome!

The next step? Doing the same thing with my Linux box, but I'm worried I won't find any HD content in linux handled formats.