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Sky HD box (HDTV) and Minidisc (HI-SP)

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Anybody who's living in the UK ( Or Eire - ROI) and suscribed to the SKY HD TV service --you can get some great Audio now on the HD channels -- the good thing about the SKY HD boxes is that they have both HDMI and OPTICAL Audio output. Film Soundtracks from the HD channels are invariably coded in 3.2 Dolby which even if you just record into the Optical In on your MD recorder will give you Stupendous results for your play back in HI-SP. No need or point to use PCM for these recordings BTW.

(Slightly Off topic - but info for those wishing to get SKY HDTV in the UK -- the current HDTV boxes also have Analog output as well both phono and scart so you can still get HDTV audio output via "more conventional means" even though the quality won't be as good as the Optical output.(Quality here however is still streets ahead of DAB radio even on Analog input). The later boxes will just have HDMI and optical outputs so if you are thinking about getting HDTV via SKY then try and get the current boxes as they give the most flexibility for your recordings).

OK It's real time --but if you are watching the film anyway and want to record the sound track it's a great way to do it.

Compared with FM or DAB Audio quality from the HDTV system can be VERY GOOD INDEED.

Other countries I'm sure also have their own versions of HDTV systems --the remarks made above should also apply to these services as well.

OK the HDTV service comes at a price and I know we are on an Audio board but once you've seen stunning HD pictures especially from channels like Discovery / National Geographic and Sport in really fine detail and outstanding colour you can't go back to "Ordinary TV" and of course the Audio out really is First Class in most cases - which is actually the point of this post.



Edited by 1kyle
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Ive heard rumors that the HD channels use about the same bandwidth as the standard channels. Meaning that you get higher res, but lesser quality (ie: MPEG blockyness).

Do you know if there is any truth to this?

i think that would depend on your specific broadcaster & how much of the bandwidth allocated to a channel. i'd assume movie channels for HD would get more priority that say home shopping or religious channels.

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AFAIK the HD from sky uses Mpeg4 and not Mpeg2. Also they are higher bandwidth channels than the older SD ones

On the audio front, the MiniDisc cant decode DD signals so you must have the optical output set to stereo to record directly or feed the signal throuh a DD amp that can decode the signal.

Also, Sky+ has optical DD output exactly the same as the HD boxes.

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