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Televisions (TV) Glossary



480p

Near high definition progressive scan 852x480 resolution signal used by progressive-scan DVD players and EDTV.
Coaxial Cable

Type of cable used in home cable television. It has an insulated copper wire surrounded by a grounding wire and plastic coating.
Contrast

Difference between black and light in a picture.
CRT

Cathode Ray Tube: Vacuum tube that creates pictures by scanning an electron beam back and forth across a phosphor-coated screen. Direct-view TVs use one tube while rear-projection CRTs have three separate tubes for red, blue, and green.
Direct-View

Type of CRT television that has one picture tube and comes in screen sizes up to 36".
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DLP

Digital Light Processing: Type of projection TV technology based on DMD. DLP TVs can use a single chip that works with a color wheel to create a picture or use a three-chip setup to create the red, green, and blue components of an image.
DMD

Digital Micromirror Device: Type of microchip developed by Texas Instruments that uses thousands of swiveling mirrors to create a picture.
DTV

Digital Television: Digital broadcast television standard for HDTV and SDTV.
DVI

Digital Visual Interface: Connection used to carry encrypted high-resolution video signals from a HDTV-capable satellite or cable set-top box to an HDTV monitor with a DVI connector. It can also be used with some DVD players.
HD-Ready

Televisions that need a separate receiver/decoder to display high-definition television signals.
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HDMI

High-Definition Multimedia Interface: Connection that transfers encrypted uncompressed digital video and multichannel audio.
HDTV

High Definition Television: Highest-resolution digital television programs, usually 720p or 1080i. Televisions marketed as "HDTV" have a built-in HDTV decoder or are HDTV ready.
HDTV-Ready

Televisions that need a separate tuner to display high-definition television signals. Also called an HDTV monitor.
High-Definition

Highest-resolution digital television programs, usually 720p or 1080i.
Home Theater

Home entertainment setup that includes a television, audio amplifier, DVD player, and surround sound stereo speakers.
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HTiB

Home Theater in a Box: Set of home theater surround sound speakers and a decoder/amplifier. It can come with or without a DVD player.
Interlaced Scan

Process of creating a television picture by sequentially drawing odd and even lines on a screen. The process is used by NTSC and several digital television signals.
LCD

Liquid Crystal Display: Type of technology used by some flat-panel and rear-projection televisions that works by shining light through pixel cells. Each cell contains a red, green, and blue component. An LCD TV cannot turn off specific pixels.
LCoS

Liquid Crystal on Silicon: Projection display technology that combines aspects of LCD and DLP technology. As light shines through liquid crystals, it is reflected or blocked by a mirror. LCoS rear-projectors usually use three separate LCoS chips for red, green, and blue.
Luminance

Picture brightness.
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Monster Cable

Manufacturer of audio and video cables. Also refers to cables from the company.
NTSC

National Television System Committee: Organization that established the 525-line interlaced scan analog television standard in North America. We are only able to see 480 lines (480i).
PiP

Picture-in-Picture: Television feature that allows a viewer to watch overlaid or split-screen video from two different sources.
Pixel

Picture Element: A single point in an image. You see a complete image when multiple pixels are put together.
S-Video

Four-pin connector that transmits the luminance and chrominance portions of a video signal separately.
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SDTV

Standard Definition Television: Digital television system that supports 480i and 480p signals.
Tuner

Device that converts broadcast signals into audio and video signals your television can use.
1080i

HDTV 1920x1080 resolution interlaced scan signal. HDTV television programs are usually 720p or 1080i.
16:9 Aspect Ratio

Screen width to height ratio for widescreen CRT, LCD, plasma, and rear-projection televisions.
4:3 Aspect Ratio

Screen width to height ratio for some CRT televisions.
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720i

HDTV 1280x720 resolution interlaced scan signal.
720p

HDTV 1280x720 resolution progressive scan signal. HDTV television programs are usually 720p or 1080i.
Antenna

Rod or wire used to receive television signals broadcast over the air.
Artifact

Defects in a television picture such as seemingly misplaced dots or blocks that resemble a pixilated digital image.
Burn-In

Television screen damage that occurs when a static image remains in one place too long, leaving an impression. Plasma and rear-projection  CRTs are most vulnerable.
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Chrominance

Color aspects of a picture.
Component Video

Cable splitting video into three signals: one brightness and two color. It offers better quality than composite video and S-video. Wide bandwidth component video cables carry high-definition video signals.
Composite Video

Single video signal containing brightness (luminance) and color (chrominance) information.
EDTV

Enhanced Definition Television: TVs offering near high definition progressive scan 852x480 (480p) resolution.
Fiber Optic

Cable made up of glass filament that transmits data using light.
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Flat-Panel

Thin television that uses LCD or plasma technology.
HDCP

Type of encryption used with DVI and HDMI connections to prevent the unauthorized reproduction of copyrighted materials.
HDTV Monitor

Televisions that need a separate tuner to display high-definition television signals. Also called HDTV-ready.
HDTV Tuner

Device used to receive and decode an HDTV television signal. HDTV tuners are built-in to special cable and satellite television receivers.
Plasma

Television technology that creates an image by applying an electric charge to gas-filled cells which react with a burst of ultraviolet light. Plasma televisions can be HDTV, HDTV-ready, or EDTV.
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Progressive Scan

Process of creating a 720p or 480p image on an HDTV monitor by displaying horizontal and vertical picture information on a screen simultaneously.
Rainbow Effect

Artifact created on some single-chip DLP televisions where people can see a flash of color separate from the overall television picture.
Rear-Projection TV

Type of television that creates a picture by using a series of lenses and mirrors to magnify an image and project it onto the back of a translucent screen.
Resolution

Screen image quality and clarity measured in pixels. Higher resolution offers a clearer picture.
Widescreen

Television screen with a 16:9 aspect ratio.
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