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Beginner’s Guide to HTPC: Video Resolutions

Continuing our series of Beginner’s Guides for HTPC and Home Theater, this guide will take a closer look at Video Resolutions–what it means, why’s it important and how to make your picture as good as possible for your particular environment.


What does 1080p/720p/1080i/480p mean?

The numbers 1080, 720 and 480 refer to the lines of vertical resolution in the picture as illustrated in the following diagram:


Note that each line is drawn to the screen beginning at the left. If there are 1080 lines of vertical resolution then there are 1080 lines drawn from the left side of the screen to the right side with line 1 located at the very top of the screen and line 1080 at the very bottom.. The higher the number of lines there are, the greater the amount of detail there is in the picture.

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