A while back, Sony, Sharp, Canon and JVC announced

the creation of a new high definition video standard

for video cameras – HDV. HDV utilizes MPEG-2 image

compression with a definition of 1080 lines and a

16:9 aspect ratio.

Shortly after that, Sony opened the door to high

definition by creating the first HDV camcorder, the

HDR-FX1. This release was on par with the launch

of the first DV camcorder in 1995, which at the

time was a giant step forward for image quality,

marking the break from traditional analog.

At the time, consumers were moving from the Hi8

format to DV, which featured much better image

quality, along with the ability to transfer to a

computer without any degradation of signal. With

HDV, the resolution of camcorders can be doubled,

from 576 lines to 1080. The compression method is

no longer DV, but MPEG 2 instead.

HDV exists in two formats – 1080i (interlaced) and

720p (progressive). With interlaced, the video

camera records 1080 lines in interlaced images,

which is half images of 540 lines each that are

displayed 60 times per second.

With 720 progressive, the video camera records

720 lines in progressive images, which are full

images that are displayed 30 times per second.

Sony chose to use 1080i on the HDR-FX1, where JVC

chose to use 720p for the GR-HD1, which is sold

only in NTSC format in the USA and Japan.

The progressive mode format requires a television

set that supports it, while interlaced mode is

the natural scan mode that televisions use. The

question today is which of the two formats

deliver the best image quality.

With several high definition video cameras on the

market today, the question of image quality all

depends on the camera and features, along with

your television or method of play back. All high

definition video cameras are amazing in quality

and playback, which is why they have become so

popular is such a small amount of time.

With Sony, JVC, and Canon continuing to develop

HDV, you know the technology will continue to get

better and better. When high definition first

hit the market, it was an instant success. With

the integration of HDV, camcorders allow you to

do what you never could before.

If you like to record precious memories, a high

definition video camera is just what you need. They

are very handy to have around, and there are

several out there these days for you to choose

from – all you need to do is pick the best one

for you.

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