That time when I found out a thing or two

Once I thought I was wrong, but I was mistaken. Seriously though, I’m the first to admit that I don’t know everything, and make fun of myself when I’m wrong. So it was back in 2013 when I found out something about DIRECTV I didn’t know.

In this article I had to admit that yes there was actually free DIRECTV content available in 1080p. Granted it’s nothing but movie trailers, but if you want to test whether or not your TV gets 1080p content, there’s a way to do it without spending a single cent. I had been saying that there wasn’t any free 1080p content, and one of our kind Solid Signal Blog fans gently corrected me.

Is 1080p/24 even important anymore?

Ten years ago, high definition television was the subject of a lot of focus from enthusiasts. Televisions were expensive, especially by today’s standards, although at the time they were the cheapest they’d ever been. You can still buy an expensive TV now that does some amazing things. Most folks… don’t. They’ve found that even a TV in the sub-$500 range is going to be astoundingly good.

There was a big focus at that time on frame rate. Most movies of the day were shot at 24 frames per second (actually 23.976 but let’s not get picky.) When transferred to video, mechanical means were used to change them to 60 half-frames per second (actually 59.97 but again, let’s not get picky.) That meant that a lot of the picture information seemed blurry as roughly every third frame was compromised. Presenting movies in their native 24 frames per second format has been possible since the days of the Blu-ray disc and it’s common with streaming and on-demand films now.

However, with more and more movies being presented in 4K 60 frames per second, and being captured digitally at higher frame rates, the effect of the “3:2 pulldown” is a lot less. Also, removing it gives movies a more TV-like effect that many viewers say they don’t like.

The phenomenon of “good enough”

The big change in the world of home entertainment is that “good enough” is really the driving factor in our media consumption now. A generation ago or more, home theater was driven by enthusiasts and their choices. But now, we have high quality displays that are so cheap, and sound systems that combine compactness and a measure of quality.

Today, our home theaters are driven more by mass marketing. That’s not a bad thing. Of course, now people have other options for consuming video, like phones and tablets. We don’t need to be in one place to be entertained. Most folks are impressed enough by the default settings on the equipment that they don’t need to fine tune them. That’s a testament to the quality of product coming out today.

And the beat goes on

So there you go folks, let no one ever say that I don’t learnand change. Over the last ten years this blog has gone from focusing almost exclusively on one product — DIRECTV Satellite Television — to becoming a knowledge portal for home theater, streaming, cellular, computers, smart home, and the tens of thousands of products you can get when you shop at SolidSignal.com. You have to keep changing. If not, how can you laugh at yourself when you look at something you created so long ago?

About the Author

Stuart Sweet
Stuart Sweet is the editor-in-chief of The Solid Signal Blog and a "master plumber" at Signal Group, LLC. He is the author of over 8,000 articles and longform tutorials including many posted here. Reach him by clicking on "Contact the Editor" at the bottom of this page.