I was at a professional trade show for visual and sound technologies recently and was chatting with a representative for one of the companies who told me that the CRTC has regulated that all HDTV content in Canada is to be broadcast at the 720P resolution standard, regardless of the broadcast sources original specification. This would mean that for example a feed from an American station that was originally 1080I would be transcoded to 720P for reception by the end users equipment.
Regrettably I do not have the equipment available to confirm if this is true at this time, however as the source was a member of the video display industry, I have no reason to suspect that he is not correct. If this is the case, then I must ask why this is so and why the CRTC feels the need to set such a regulation in the first place, especially when half of the content providers that are broadcasting are doing so in the 1080I format and as such are providing a sharper image then we are being allowed to see.
I actually hope I am wrong about this as just for once, I would like not to feel like the CRTC is doing nothing but sucking money out of our pockets only to “protect” us from something that we do not need protection from.
The gentleman I was talking to was a representative for a company that provides digital projectors for applications such as movie theatres and other large screen display needs. Again as I was at a professional trade show, I figured he knows more then I probably do. Thanks for pointing that link out to me.
My only problem now is that I am one of the people that it would seem is "stuck" at 720P for the time being as I am currently a BEV subscriber. I guess at some point I am going to have to get a HD disc player of one type or another just to see what my TV can really do.
One should not really think of 720P as inferior to 1080i. There have been many discussions regarding which is better and which is better for which application, however, they are both acceptable standards for HD broadcasting.
The production values that go into the original programming is often far more important than the final broadcast format.
The objection I have is that service providers should not be allowed to (arbitrarily) change the format - the end customer should be able to input to the TV what is broadcast, whether that is 720P or 1080i.