Local News

WRAL Makes HDTV History -- Again

Posted October 11, 2000

— WRAL-TVmade history Friday, as the first television station in the world to offer an entire news broadcast live in high-definition. So what is HDTV?

High-definition television, HDTV, is digital television, DTV, in its highest and best form. The format, which promises better pictures and sound for viewers, is catching on.

TheFCChas mandated that all television broadcasters move to digital over the next several years.

Like the move to color TV, it will take a while, but viewers are buying sets now.

Steven White works long hours at his computer job and enjoys his time at home. His bachelor pad boasts a 46-inch high-definition TV display.

"I've always been an early adopter, and I believe that people won't buy technology until they see it. Somebody has to do it," he says.

And more people are investing thousands of dollars in digital television.

HDTV owner Eric Larsen says digital TV offers more than great pictures.

"There are a number of additional stations that come on the same bandwidth, or series of channels. And, for example, when there's a storm coming, WRAL will often broadcast the radar image on one of those second or third channels," says Larsen.

Digital TV brings the best quality widescreen digital picture, theater-quality sound and clarity not possible on TVs found in most homes.

  • Widescreen displays feature a 16 x 9 picture ratio. Today's standard is 4 x 3.
  • Another difference: 1,080 lines of resolution versus about 400 lines.
  • A major difference between standard analog TV and high-definition television is the amount of detail in the picture.There are concerns about cost and lack of programming.

    Despite those concerns, Capitol Broadcasting's Jim Goodmon, aleader in the development of digital television, says the industry must change to be competitive in the digital future.

    "As we have more high-definition programming, as the retailers, the people that sell TV sets get more HD sets on the floor and do more demonstrations, I think this is going to take off like a rocket," says Goodmon.

    WRAL is giving away a free HDTV at theN.C. State Fair. Visit our tent, located on the northeast side of Dorton Arena, to register.

  • Comments

    Please with your WRAL.com account to comment on this story. You also will need a Facebook account to comment.

    Oldest First
    View all