Chapter 23

Chapter 23
This sample chapter is for review purposes only. Copyright © The Goodheart-Willcox Co., Inc. All rights reserved.
After studying this chapter, you will be able to:
K Explain the steps in the transmission of a television
K Discuss the scanning process.
K Identify circuits in both black-and-white and color
television receivers and explain their functions.
K Identify the size and makeup of a television
K Discuss a variety of television innovations including video cassette recorders, remote control, and
satellite television.
K List the benefits of HDTV as compared to analog
K Explain the difference between multicasting and
K Discuss the compression technique of MPEG2.
K Discuss the various flat-panel technologies.
Television and
Video Display Units
polarized light
progressive scanning
shadow mask picture tube
synchronization (sync)
thin film transistor liquid
crystal display (TFT-LCD)
ultra high frequency (UHF)
very high frequency (VHF)
video detector
video head
Television is a giant in the field of communications.
Through television, entertainment, education, information, and advertising are available to millions of people.
And through satellite links, television can instantaneously
bring the entire world into our home or office.
This text will not address the detailed electronic
circuits involved in the production, transmission, and
reception of television signals. However, it is important for
all persons interested in the science of electronics to have
a basic knowledge of television and related information.
Key Words and Terms
The following words and terms will become important pieces of your electricity and electronics vocabulary.
Look for them as you read this chapter.
Advanced Television
Systems Committee
aspect ratio
brightness control
charged coupled device
deflection yoke
enhanced definition
television (EDTV)
focal point
frame rate
geostationary orbit
high definition television
liquid crystal display
National Television
Standards Committee
picture element
Taking a picture from one location and reproducing
it in your home is a combination of several processes.
First, a television camera must record the images to be
transferred. Next, those images must be turned into radio
waves and sent out into the air, or turned into electrical
signals and transmitted through cables. Finally, the signals must be received and translated back into pictures.
Electronic Communication and Data Systems
As a television camera views a studio scene, it “sees”
the scene as a combination of these picture elements. The
scene is focused on a photosensitive mosaic in the camera that consists of many photoelectric cells. Each cell
responds to the scene by producing a voltage that is in
balance with the strength of the light. These voltages are
amplified and used for modulation of the AM carrier
wave. This wave is transmitted to the home receiver.
A line drawing of a camera tube called an image
orthicon is shown in Figure 23-1. The scene in front of
the camera focuses on the photo cathode through a standard camera lens system. The varying degrees of light
cause electrons to be emitted on the target side of the
cathode. These form an electronic image of the scene.
The target plate operates at a high positive potential. The
electrons from the cathode are attracted to the target. The
target is made of low-resistance glass and has a
transparency effect. The electron image appears on both
sides of the target plate.
At the right in Figure 23-1 is an electron gun, which
produces a stream of electrons. The speed of the stream is
increased by the grids (at the top and bottom in the figure). The beam scans left to right and top to bottom and
is controlled by the magnetic deflection coils around the
tube. The moving electron beam strikes the target plate
and the electrons return to the electron multiplier section.
The strength of the electron stream returning to the multiplier is balanced with the electron image. It provides the
desired signal current for electronic picture reproduction.
The scanning system used in the United States is the
interlace system. It consists of 525 scanning lines. The
beam starts at the top left-hand corner of the picture. It
scans the odd numbered lines of the scanning pattern
(lines 1, 3, 5, 7, etc.) from left to right. At the completion
of 262 1/2 lines, the electron beam is returned to the starting point by vertical deflection coils. The beam then
scans the even numbered lines.
One scan of 262 1/2 lines represents a field. One set
of the odd and even numbered fields represents a frame.
A representation of the interlace scanning pattern is
shown in Figure 23-2.
The frame frequency has been set by the Federal
Communications Commission (FCC) at 30 hertz. This
means your TV receives 30 complete frames per second,
or 60 picture fields of alternate odd and even lines per
second. To the human eye, this appears as a constant,
nonflickering picture.
A device called a horizontal deflection oscillator
causes the beam to move from left to right. To produce
525 lines per frame at a frame frequency of 30 Hz, the
horizontal deflection oscillator must work at a frequency
of 15,750 Hz (525 × 30).
Scanning is the point-to-point examination of a picture. In the camera, the electron beam scans the electron
image. It responds to the point-to-point brilliance of the
Figure 23-2. This is a portion of the interlace scanning
system used in television. There are actually 525 lines.
Deflection coil
Television Cameras
Electron beam
What looks like a solid picture is really an extremely
large number of dots. In a black-and-white picture, these
dots are varying degrees of black and white. They are
called picture elements. Look closely at a photo in a daily
newspaper and you will see that these picture elements
are clearly visible.
Focus coil
Figure 23-1. This sketch shows the interior arrangement of the image orthicon tube used in television cameras.
Chapter 23 Television and Video Display Units
The vertical deflection oscillator causes the beam to
move from top to bottom. The vertical deflection oscillator must have a frequency of 60 cycles per second. This
is a field frequency.
Closer study of the scanning process reveals that the
beam scans as it moves from left to right. After it has read
one line, it quickly retraces to the left and starts reading
the next line in the same way we read a book. The retrace
time is very rapid, but still shows a line in the picture.
Therefore, the picture must be black during this retrace
time. Also, when the beam reaches the bottom of the picture, the beam must be returned to the top to scan again.
The picture must also be black during vertical retrace, or
trace lines would be visible.
The oscillators that make the scanning and retrace
voltages for both the horizontal and vertical sweep must
produce a waveform as shown in Figure 23-3. This is a
sawtooth waveform. Notice the gradual increase in
voltage during the sweep and the rapid decrease during
retrace. These voltages are applied to coils that surround
the picture tube. These coils are called the deflection
yoke. An increase in the strength of the magnetic fields
in the coils causes the electron beam to move. See
Figure 23-4.
Scanning at the studio and scanning on a television
must be in step. For this to occur, a pulse generator
triggers the horizontal and vertical oscillators at the
studio. This same pulse is also sent over the air and
received by the television set. This pulse, known as the
synchronization pulse, or sync pulse, triggers the oscillators in the receiver and keeps them at exactly the same
frequency. Older televisions have horizontal hold and
vertical hold controls. These controls are used to make
slight adjustments so that the oscillators can lock in with
the sync pulses. Newer televisions make the adjustments
Composite Video Signals
All video signals are formed in the same way so that
a television can be used in any geographic area. These
standards are set by the FCC and are used by all TV
broadcasting stations.
The television signals received by TVs contain picture (video) and sound (aural) information. The video
information is an AM signal. The audio information is an
FM signal.
The amplitude of the modulation is divided into two
parts. The first 75 percent is used to transmit video information. The remaining 25 percent is for the sync pulses,
Figure 23-5. Also, a system of negative transmission has
been adopted. This means that the higher amplitudes of
video information produce darker areas in the picture.
At 75 percent, the picture is completely black. Look at
Figure 23-5 again, the percentage is shown on the left.
Electronic Communication and Data Systems
As the beam scans each black bar, a similar action
takes place. At the end of the line, the screen is driven
back to the pedestal, or blanking level. During this
blanking pulse, beam flyback occurs and a sync pulse is
sent in the blacker-than-black, or infrablack, region
(upper 25 percent) for oscillator synchronization. A second line to be scanned would be an exact copy of the first
unless the picture is changed. At the bottom of the picture, a series of pulses trigger the vertical oscillator and
keep it synchronized.
Figure 23-6 shows a composite (complete) video
signal. The video information for one line between the
blanking pulses is varying degrees of black and white.
Compare the two video signals in Figure 23-7. Signal A is made up mostly of bright objects. The average
overall brightness of the scene is another form of the
information sent to a TV receiver from the transmitter. It
can be detected from the composite video signal.
Grid Nº 5
Grid Nº 1
Grid Nº 2
Grid Nº 4
The cathode ray tube (CRT) is used to produce
images in television sets. The control grid determines the
flow of electrons through the tube. In the CRT this is also
true, Figure 23-8. At zero bias the CRT is at maximum
current; therefore, the screen is bright or white. At cutoff
bias, the current is zero and the screen is black. The tube
Figure 23-8. Study this sketch of a CRT. (RCA)
Sync pulse
Blanking level
Figure 23-6. The composite video signal of one line
scanned by the television camera.
Basic Cathode Ray Tube Controls
Black level
Glass neck
Grid Nº 3
Figure 23-3. The waveform of the voltages required for
scanning and retrace. It is called a sawtooth waveform.
operates at a selected bias on the control grid. This bias
can be controlled by the knob on the TV or a button on
the TV remote called the brightness control.
When no picture is being received on the TV, the
scanning electron beam can be seen in the form of lines
on the TV screen. This is called the raster. Turn a TV to
a vacant channel and observe this raster. Now adjust the
brightness control from black to bright. The incoming,
detected video signal is applied to the grid of the CRT
(sometimes to the cathode, depending on polarity of signal). The video signal adds to, or subtracts from, the bias
on the tube. This action results in a modulated electron
stream that conforms to the picture information in the
video signal. The picture is produced on the fluorescent
The sharpness or focus of the electron beam can be
adjusted by changing the voltages of the focusing grids.
From time to time, they may require adjustments. Refer
again to Figure 23-8. Find the centering magnet. Slight
adjustments on this magnet will correct a picture that is
off center.
Review Questions for Section 23.1
Figure 23-5. The voltages developed as the camera
scans one line across a checkerboard. The sync pulses
are transmitted at the end of each line.
Figure 23-4. A deflection yoke fits around the neck of
the television picture tube. (Triad)
Figure 23-7. A comparison of a dark and a light picture
as they appear in the video signal. A–Light signal.
B–Dark signal.
1. Briefly explain how an orthicon television camera
Chapter 23 Television and Video Display Units
2. __________ is the point-to-point examination of a
3. One scan of 262 1/2 lines represents a(n)
4. What is a deflection yoke and what is its purpose?
5. The _________ triggers the oscillators in the receiver
and keeps them at exactly the same frequency.
6. What is a raster?
The television receiver is a fairly complex electronic
device. As you work through the block diagram of the
receiver shown in Figure 23-9, take note of the similarities between your television set and the radio receivers
you just studied in Chapter 22.
Black-and-White Television Receiver
Figure 23-9 shows the parts of the television receiver.
This block diagram shows the links between the parts of
the television. Trace the signal path through the stages.
The purpose of each group of components will be apparent. The name of each block reflects its purpose in the circuit. The following text takes you stage by stage through
a television receiver.
The RF amplifier serves a function similar to that in
the superheterodyne radio. The incoming television signal
is chosen by switching fixed inductors into the tuning circuit. These tuned circuits provide constant gain and selectivity for each television channel. In this stage, the video
signal, with all its information, is amplified and fed to the
In the mixer stage, the incoming video signal is
mixed with the signal from a local oscillator to produce an
intermediate frequency. The commonly used IF is 45.75
megahertz. When a channel is chosen with the channel
selector, the tuning circuit is changed. The frequency of
the oscillator is also changed so that it is always producing the IF of the correct frequency. A fine-tuning changes
the frequency of the oscillator slightly in order to provide
the best response.
The RF amp, mixer, and oscillator are combined in
one unit. The unit is called the tuner or front end of a television. These units are usually put together in the factory.
Adjustments should not be made on these units unless you
have the correct instruments and thorough knowledge of
The PIX-IF amplifiers amplify the output of the
mixer stage. This includes the 45.75 megahertz intermediate frequency, the video, and the aural information. To
provide maximum frequency response for each stage up to
45.75 MHz, each stage must amplify a broad band of frequencies. The voltage gain of each stage is reduced. More
stages of IF amplification are required. In this system, the
IF amplifier
60 Hz
Low voltage
power supply
High voltage
Figure 23-9. Block diagram of a TV receiver.
Electronic Communication and Data Systems
sound is passed through the IF amplifier with the video
signal. It is called the intercarrier system.
The output from the last IF stage is fed to the video
detector or demodulator. The detection process is the
same as in the radio. The video signal used to amplitude
modulate the transmitted carrier wave is separated and fed
to the next stage.
In the video amplifier stages, the demodulated video
signal is amplified and fed to the grid (sometimes cathode)
of the CRT. This signal modulates or varies the strength of
the electron beam and produces the picture on the screen.
The FM sound signal is amplified in the sound IF
amplifier. Later in this chapter, you will learn that the FM
sound of the television program is separated from the
video carrier wave by 4.5 megahertz. This produces a
4.5 MHz FM signal at the output of the video detector,
which is coupled to the sound IF amplifiers.
The FM audio detector detects the frequency variations in the modulated signal and converts them to an
audio signal.
AF amplifiers are the same as those used in the conventional radio or audio system discussed in the previous
chapter. The audio signal is amplified enough to drive the
power amplifier and the speaker.
The output of the video amplifier is fed to the
sync separator. This circuit removes the horizontal and
vertical sync pulses that were transmitted as part of the
composite video signal. These sync pulses trigger the
horizontal and vertical oscillators and keep them in step
with the television camera.
The sync amplifier is a voltage amplifier stage that
increases the sync pulses.
In the horizontal AFC, the horizontal oscillator frequency is compared to the sync pulse frequency. If they
are not the same, voltages are developed that change the
horizontal oscillator to the same frequency.
The horizontal oscillator operates on a frequency of
15,750 Hz. It provides the sawtooth waveform needed for
horizontal scanning.
The horizontal output stage correctly shapes the
sawtooth waveform for the horizontal deflection coils. It
also drives the horizontal deflection coils and provides
power for the high voltage rectifier.
The output of the horizontal oscillator shocks the
horizontal output transformer (HOT). The high ac voltage developed by this autotransformer is rectified by the
high voltage rectifier and is filtered for the anode in the
CRT. See Figure 23-10.
The damper stage dampens out oscillations in the
deflection yoke after retrace.
The output of the sync amplifier is fed through a vertical integration network to the vertical oscillator. The
Figure 23-10. Horizontal output transformer (HOT).
integrator is an RC circuit designed with a time constant.
The integrator builds up a voltage when a series or groups
of closely spaced sync pulses occur.
The transmitted vertical pulse is a wide pulse. It
occurs at a frequency of 60 Hz. The vertical oscillator is
triggered by this pulse and, therefore, keeps on frequency.
The output of the vertical oscillator provides the
sawtooth voltage to the deflection coils. The deflection
coils move the beam from the top to the bottom of the
screen and the flyback from bottom to top, at the end of
each field.
The vertical output amplifier is used by the output of
the oscillator to provide the proper currents in the deflection yoke for vertical scanning.
Special purpose circuits
The basic television circuit has been improved in
many ways. Automatic controls have been designed for
many functions that would be tiresome for the TV viewer
to manage. Two of these improvements are dc restoration
and automatic gain control.
DC restoration. The average darkness or brightness
of a TV picture is transmitted as the average value of the
dc component of the video signal. If the video amplifiers
are RC coupled, the dc value of the signal is lost. In this
case, the average value of the video signal is taken from
the detector and used to set the bias on the CRT.
Automatic gain control. The AGC serves the same
function as it did in the radio receiver. Its purpose is to
Chapter 23 Television and Video Display Units
provide a fairly constant output from the detector by varying the gain of the amplifiers in previous stages. This is
done by rectifying the video signal to produce a negative
voltage. This voltage is applied to the bias of the previous
amplifiers to change their gain.
Color Television Receiver
Color television was developed in the late 1940s.
The system currently used in the United States was pioneered by RCA Laboratories. In March, 1950, a color television demonstration was given in Washington, DC to
FCC personnel, reporters, and other interested people. As
a result of this demonstration, color television development was launched.
An invention that made color television possible was
the shadow mask picture tube, Figure 23-11.
The three basic colors used in color television are
red, blue, and green, Figure 23-12. By combining these
colors, any color can be produced on the screen.
The first color picture tube produced for retail sale
was the delta-type tube. It was invented in 1950, and
was basically the same tube used in the color
television demonstrations given by RCA Laboratories in
Washington, DC.
The delta-type tube uses three electron guns placed
in the neck assembly of the picture tube. The electrons are
emitted by the three guns toward the screen. The screen is
filled with hundreds of thousands of dots containing the
colors red, blue, and green. In between the electron gun
and the color-producing screen, the three electron
beams are focused through an aperture or shadow mask,
Figure 23-13. This shadow mask ensures that the
electron beams strike the dots properly.
A line is made by one complete scan (from left to
right) of all three electron beams hitting all the dots
across the screen. If all electron beams are adjusted properly, the result will be a white line. A color line is made
by mixing the electron beams.
Electronic Communication and Data Systems
Yellow (red/green)
Green filter
(all 3 colors)
Cyan (blue/green)
Figure 23-12. Red, blue, and green are the basic colors used in television.
electron gun
aperture mask
Phosphor screen
Figure 23-13. A delta-type gun, shadow mask, and tridot screen arrangement. (Sylvania-GTE)
In-line gun assemblies were invented after the
shadow mask tube. Figure 23-14 shows four in-line
gun assemblies with different aperture grill and screen
A color television receiver is a very complex
instrument. It has to be able to produce both color and
black-and-white pictures. But not all televisions are color
televisions, so the incoming signal must also work with
black-and-white sets. Figure 23-15 shows a block
diagram of a color television receiver.
Television Channel
Figure 23-11. Study this color picture tube. (Sylvania-GTE)
Light sources
The FCC has assigned a portion of the radio frequency spectrum for each television channel. There are
two types of television channels: very high frequency
(VHF) and ultra high frequency (UHF). Each channel is
6 MHz wide. The VHF channels, 2 to 13, are listed
in Figure 23-16 along with frequency bands and carrier
Examine channel 4 in Figure 23-17. The basic video
carrier frequency is 67.25 MHz. Recall that when an RF
carrier wave is amplitude modulated, sideband frequencies appear. These stand for the sum and difference
between the carrier frequency and the modulating
To send a very clear, sharp picture, frequencies of
at least 4 MHz are needed for modulation. These
frequencies combine in channel 4 for a band occupancy
of 63.25 MHz (67.25 – 4 MHz) to 71.25 MHz
(67.25 + 4 MHz). It is a total channel width of 8 MHz.
However, the FCC allows only 6 MHz, therefore, a compromise must be made.
In commercial TV broadcasting the upper sideband
is transmitted without attenuation. The lower sideband is
partly removed by a vestigial-sideband filter at the transmitter. The curve in Figure 23-17 shows the basic
response traits of the TV transmitter. The sound is transmitted as a frequency-modulated signal at a center frequency 4.5 MHz above the video carrier. In channel 4, the
sound is at 71.75 MHz.
The ultra high frequency (UHF) television band covers from channel 14 to 83. As in VHF, the bandwidth of
each channel is 6 MHz. The same frequency bandwidths
are used for the picture carrier as VHF.
The UHF channels used for commercial TV are set
by the FCC. See Figure 23-18.
Chapter 23 Television and Video Display Units
3 guns
3 lenses
3 guns
3 lenses
Frequency band
Video carrier
Aural carrier
Single large lens
3 lenses
Dot pattern
(aperture grille)
Brick-like pattern
Stripe pattern
Stripe pattern
Electronic Communication and Data Systems
Single gun
Unitized gun
Figure 23-16. VHF frequency assignments.
Figure 23-14. In-line color tubes. A–Three guns with circular aperture. B–Three guns with rectangular aperture.
C–Unitized gun with slot aperture. D–Sony Trinitron with one gun and grille aperture.
6 MHz
4.5 MHz
4 MHz
67.25 MHz
72 MHz
71.75 MHz
Figure 23-17. Shown are the locations of the picture
carrier and sound for channel 4, VHF. The channel is 6
MHz wide.
Figure 23-15. The RCA CTC-40 color receiver. (RCA)
Review Questions for Section 23.2
1. What is the purpose of an RF amplifier in a television receiver?
2. The output of the mixer stage is amplified by the:
a. PIX-IF amplifier.
b. video amplifier.
c. AF amplifier.
d. None of the above.
In addition to the electronics of television itself,
there are a number of other electronic innovations that
have been created to work with television. A few of these
innovations are detailed here.
Video Cassette Recorders
66 MHz Picture
3. The __________ __________ stage correctly
shapes the sawtooth waveform for the horizontal
deflection coils.
4. What is the purpose of a shadow mask?
5. A Sony Trinitron color tube uses a(n) __________
6. Each TV channel bandwidth is:
a. 6 Hz.
b. 60 MHz.
c. 6 MHz.
d. None of the above.
Channel number
Frequency band
Figure 23-18. Examples of some ultra high frequency
(UHF) channels and where they are located in the
frequency band.
Video cassette recorders (VCRs) can be used to play
videotapes. They also can be used to record and play back
television broadcasts.
Most VCRs have four heads. A video head is a tiny
electromagnet that reads information from the recorded
tape during playback. It writes information onto the tape
during recording. VCRs can have extra heads that provide
better sound and picture quality.
Look at Figure 23-19. Recording information on a
magnetic tape is simple. The tape is plastic with a thin
coating of iron oxide on one side. The iron oxide is a
Electrical signal
Coil winding
Recording head
Iron oxide coating
on plastic tape
Magnetized patterns
on tape represent
electrical signals
Figure 23-19. Magnetic tape recording is simply impressions of a magnetic pattern on an oxide tape.
Chapter 23 Television and Video Display Units
magnetic material. The voice or picture message is converted to electrical impulses. These electrical impulses
are applied to the coil winding on the recording head. The
fluctuations of the electrical impulses make the magnetic
recording head fluctuate at the same rate as the electrical
impulses. The magnetic head induces a magnetic pattern
on the metal-oxide tape. The magnetic patterns uniquely
match the original voice or picture patterns.
The videotape not only records voice and video but
also speed information, end of tape location, copyright,
and anticopy coding.
Remote Control
A remote control is an application of infrared light
and digital techniques. When a button on the remote control is pushed, a digital code is sent out of the remote control to an infrared sensor on the TV. The sensor on the TV
amplifies and decodes the signal. See Figure 23-21.
Electronic Communication and Data Systems
Satellite TV
Infrared transmitter
Infrared coded beam
Infrared receiver
Figure 23-21. A television remote control sends digital
information to the infrared receiver mounted on the TV.
Digital Video Recorder
A digital video recorder (DVR) combines computer
and television components to form a television receiver. A
DVR receives a television signal and can record the television program as well. A hard disk drive is used for the
recording medium rather than magnetic tape as found in
a VCR system. A hard disk drive is capable of recording
and storing hundreds of hours of television programming.
See Figure 23-20.
Large-Screen Projection TV
Most large-screen projection TVs use a special electron gun assembly that projects three separate images
onto a screen. Early projection TVs had screens with a
significant curvature. As these televisions became more
popular and more advanced, engineers were able to
develop a flat screen projection. Figure 23-22 shows how
the electron gun is assembled.
The main performance problem with large-screen or
projection TVs is the loss of clarity of the video image.
Remember there are only 525 lines per frame of display.
As the picture is increased in size, the lines become a distraction. The image does not magnify; it simply gets
larger. Some large projection TVs offer a slight improvement in video image by scanning the same lines twice for
a total of 1050 lines across each frame. These sets do
have a sharper, more appealing video image to the human
eye, but no real magnification has taken place.
Arthur C. Clarke first introduced the idea of launching
satellites to improve communications. He did this in an
article in the fall, 1945 issue of Wireless World magazine.
He stated that if satellites could be launched high enough
(35,880 kilometers or 22,300 miles) above the equator,
they would be in geostationary orbit. Geostationary orbit
means an object rotates with the earth.
The first communications satellite, Telestar I, was
launched by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in 1962. It was a small, experimental
satellite that only operated a few hours each day. This
satellite made communication between the United States
and Europe possible. In April, 1965, NASA launched the
first commercial satellite, Early Bird. This satellite was
owned by the International Telecommunications Satellite
Organization (INTELSAT), a group created in 1964. Now
there are many satellites in orbit allowing for television,
telephone, radio, data, and other communications
Rockets and space shuttles place satellites into space.
There they are deployed and the circuits are activated,
Figure 23-23. Figure 23-24 shows an SBS communications satellite now in orbit. This satellite was designed to
provide voice, video teleconferencing, data, and electronic mail services to U.S. businesses.
From its geostationary, or synchronous, orbit 22,300
miles above the equator, AUSSAT, Australia’s first
national communication satellite, links that entire country
and Papua, New Guinea, through an advanced telecommunications system. See Figure 23-25. When the satellite is in orbit, the antennas point south, making the
spacecraft look upside down if viewed from earth.
Refer to Figure 23-26. It shows the inside of a satellite. A traveling wave tube amplifier increases the
strength of the communication signal for its broadcast
back to earth. It is being adjusted by an engineer. The
amplifier is onboard a communication satellite. This
satellite is built to carry both standard traveling wave
tubes and solid-state power amplifiers. This type of satellite is reliable and has a long life.
The diagram of the parts of a satellite are shown in
Figure 23-27. Figure 23-28 shows satellites in orbit over
North America.
Image projected
to 4 1/4 ⫻ 5 2/3 feet
internal screen
(red, blue, or green)
Figure 23-20. A digital video recorder (DVR) with its
case removed. The hard disk drive is located in the center of the device under the metal support. To identify the
hard disk drive, look at the thicker red cable.
Spherical projection
Figure 23-22. Projection tube for a large-screen
Figure 23-23. The launching of the Hughes communication Leasat 4 satellite. (Hughes Communications, Inc.)
Figure 23-24. A Satellite Business Systems (SBS)
satellite being prepared for launch.
(Hughes Communications, Inc.)
Chapter 23 Television and Video Display Units
and command
bicone antenna
Electronic Communication and Data Systems
Earth transmitter
to satellite
Fixed forward
solar panel
From studio to
satellite (antenna)
power amplifier
aft solar
From satellite
to receiver dish
feed assembly
Homes, industries, and
offices receiving signals
Figure 23-29. Study the operation of a satellite.
Battery pack
Figure 23-25. A communications satellite used for communication in Australia. (Hughes Communications, Inc.)
Figure 23-31 shows four dish designs. Motors are
often used to move dishes. This way, signal from more
than one communication satellite can be received or the
dish can be lined up with a particular satellite.
A satellite receiver is shown in Figure 23-32. This
receiver can be programmed with infrared remote control.
Complex circuitry allows the user to store satellite positions, polarity, frequencies, and tuning voltages into
memory. The programmed information can then be
recalled from the unit’s front panel or the remote control
unit. Other remote control functions include volume control with mute, direct or scan channel selection, and video
fine tuning.
kick motor
Figure 23-27. Parts of the Telstar III satellite.
(Hughes Communications, Inc.)
Coaxial cable
The signal that is supplied by the local cable television company or through a satellite dish system typically
connects to the initial receiver in the home from a single
coaxial cable. Coaxial cable is designed to carry high frequency signals. The coaxial cable is designed to limit the
radio waves generated from the center core conductor to
the area between the core conductor and the shield. The
shield will absorb the radio signal emanating from the
core conductor when the high frequency passes through.
See Figure 23-33. The shield also protects the inner core
The signal transmitted by the satellite is picked up
on earth by a receiving dish or parabolic antenna. The
dish focuses the received signals into a small area called
the focal point. The feedhorn, which acts as a receiver, is
located here, Figure 23-30. Located near the feedhorn is
a low noise amplifier (LNA) that amplifies the received
signal. The signal is then fed through a piece of electrical
coaxial cable to the TV receiver. A coaxial cable has a
conductor inside another conductor. The two conductors
are insulated from each other.
ed sign
Low noise amplifier
Figure 23-28. Geostationary communication satellites in
orbit over North America.
Dish reflects
transmitted signals
into small
focal point
Figure 23-26. Looking inside a communications satellite. (Hughes Communications, Inc.)
Cable to
Figure 23-30. A parabolic, or dish, antenna. Study the parts.
Once a signal is made by a communication station
on earth, it is beamed up to the satellite. The satellite
picks up the signal on its receiving antenna, amplifies
the signal, and then sends it back down to earth. See
Figure 23-29. The signal sent up from the studio to the
satellite is a narrow, targeted signal. The signal sent back
down from the satellite is a wide signal designed to cover
a large area of the earth.
Satellite transmission
Chapter 23 Television and Video Display Units
Metal mesh
Solid metal dish
Fiberglass dish
Digital satellite
Figure 23-31. Common dish designs.
Foil shield
Figure 23-32. A satellite receiver. (Regency Electronics)
Electronic Communication and Data Systems
The FCC’s approval in 1996 of a digital television
standard was the first step toward an improved and a
higher quality picture. Although the switch to digital has
progressed slowly, with more and more television stations
switching to digital broadcasts and many digital television
formats emerging, high definition television (HDTV) has
become the dominant digital television technology.
HDTV allows for higher resolutions and a wider display screen than an analog display system. HDTV uses
digital broadcasting techniques, allowing more information-rich data to be transmitted by airwaves than by analog broadcasts. Digital broadcasting can broadcast multiple channels in the same bandwidth as that used for one
analog channel. Broadcasting multiple channels is
referred to as multicasting. Multicasting allows not only
for the image to be broadcast, but also for two to four
channels to be broadcast in the same single-channel
bandwidth. The additional channels can be used to transmit additional images, resulting in “picture-in-picture”
and information such as stock prices, weather reports,
sports scores, or background information about the actors
in the movie being viewed. Any information found on the
Internet can be incorporated into the display screen.
When additional information is transmitted along with
the video image, it is referred to as datacasting. You will
soon likely be able to integrate a digital camera into the
system so that you can see the baby sleeping in the next
room while watching your favorite television show.
To be considered a complete HDTV system, three
major system components are required, Figure 23-34:
• A digital camera to record the images at the higher
• A digital receiver (HDTV tuner) to convert received
broadcasts into image and sound.
• A display unit capable of producing images at the
high definition TV resolution.
If any of the three major parts are missing, the
HDTV system is incomplete and will not produce an
HDTV picture. There are many television variations that
Figure 23-34. Major components required for a
complete HDTV system.
Copper core conductor
from outside radio interference. The shield of the coaxial
cable is grounded in most applications.
FAKRA SMB connector
A FAKRA SMB connector is a very small connector
especially designed for small diameter coaxial cable
known as micro-coaxial cable. Micro-coaxial cable is
used for automotive satellite radio and antenna connections. It is the smallest connector used at this time.
Review Questions for Section 23.3
1. A(n) __________ pattern is left on a recording tape.
2. A remote control sends a(n) __________
__________ to the TV.
3. How is an image projected onto a large-screen TV?
4. Why is the resolution limited for a typical largescreen TV?
5. Who first proposed the concept of communication
6. How does a receiving dish work?
7. Which part of a coaxial cable is normally grounded?
Figure 23-33. A coaxial cable consists of two shields: a
mesh or braid and foil. At the top is an F-type connector
commonly used with coaxial cables.
Photo sensor
CCD Array
The analog television display system had remained
the same for over fifty years without any major improvements to the quality of the transmitted image. This condition may have continued if not for the development of the
computer monitor. The computer monitor had a greater
image resolution than the analog television. By merging
the analog television system with the digital system,
many features that were not possible with the traditional
analog system could be added. When converting to the
digital system, there was greater ability to manipulate
screen images. For example, since there is greater colordepth control in a digital system, images could be easily
reapportioned as the image horizontal-to-vertical ratio
changed between digital and analog television reception.
Captured light
from an image
Level of
electrical charge
Figure 23-35. A CCD as it captures an image.
Chapter 23 Television and Video Display Units
use HDTV terminology but do not produce the desired
HDTV effect. For example, a television system may be
capable of receiving a transmitted HDTV broadcast, but
incapable of displaying the higher resolution HDTV
Digital Camera Technology
Traditional analog television uses vacuum tube
imaging to capture images, while HDTV uses the
charged coupled device (CCD). The CCD is an integrated circuit consisting of an array of photo sensors that
convert light from a camera's focused image to electrical
energy, Figure 23-35. The level of electrical energy is
directly proportional to the level of light captured by the
photo sensors. The CCD converts the individual packets
of electrical charge into a series of analog signals representing the level of light amplitude at each photo sensor
location. An analog-to-digital converter (ADC) converts
the series of analog signals to digital signals. The digital
pattern can then be sent to a block of computer memory
to be stored as a still image, recorded to CD or DVD,
transmitted across a computer network, or broadcast
using the existing assigned television bands.
For full-color images and higher resolutions, three
sets of CCD sensors are used. A beam splitter inside the
camera separates the incoming light into three colors:
blue, red, and green, Figure 23-36. Each color is sent
to a corresponding CCD. The three images are then
CCD Array
CCD Array
Beam splitter
Captured light
from image
Figure 23-36. A three-CCD system.
Electronic Communication and Data Systems
overlaid, producing a picture rich in color. Since the full
array of each CCD is used for each color, the three-CCD
camera is capable of higher HDTV resolutions.
Odd Rows
Even Rows
HDTV Picture Quality
The most impressive attribute of HDTV is the picture's visual quality. To compare the HDTV image to the
analog television image, we must first convert the typical
analog image to an equal digital resolution.
The National Television Standards Committee
(NTSC) formulated the standards for analog television
and video in the United States. The NTSC standard calls
for 525 scan lines at a 60 Hz refresh-rate based on the
interlace technique. NTSC is not compatible with most
computer video systems and must be converted before it
can be displayed. The Advanced Television Systems
Committee (ATSC) was established in 1983. The committee spent years developing standards that were eventually adopted by the FCC for digital television broadcasting and receivers. These standards have been designed to
eventually replace the NTSC standards.
There are 18 scanning formats described in the
ATSC standards. Variations in the standards are derived
from concerns about interlace scanning and progressive
scanning, frame rates, and aspect ratio. Earlier, in the section about the analog television system, you learned
about interlacing. Interlace scanning is a two-step process
of transmitting the odd lines of the scan and then going
back over the image, filling in the even lines to make a
complete image, Figure 23-37. Progressive scanning is
the capture and transmission of the entire image at one
time. Each line is placed on the screen progressively in
one sweep.
Frame rate is how often the image is updated on the
screen. Currently, three frame rates (in frames per second) exist: 60, 30, and 24. Aspect ratio is the relationship
of the horizontal to vertical screen presentation measurements. Aspect ratio standards can be either 4:3 or 16:9.
The 16:9 is a wide-screen aspect ratio similar to common
movie theaters. The 4:3 aspect ratio is a standard television rectangle. The various factors of aspect ratio, frame
rates, and scanning method combine to form the 18 different screen standards. Figure 23-38 lists the 18 ATSC
digital TV compression formats.
HDTV has a vertical scanning rate equal to 720p
(progressive) and 1080i (interlaced) vertical lines. The
actual display may have a higher vertical scan rate than
the 1080i standard. This is especially important as the
size of the display area increases.
To compare the quality of analog television to
HDTV, you must convert scan lines to maximum number
240 lines 30 × /sec
240 lines 30 × /sec
All lines scanned at once
480 lines 60 × /sec
Figure 23-37. Interlaced and progressive scanning.
A—Interlaced scanning captures and transmits the odd
lines first, and then the even lines. B—Progressive scanning captures and transmits the whole image at once.
of pixels. A pixel is the smallest unit of an image on a
graphic display. It can be thought of as a single dot in the
entire image.
Analog television approximates a screen composed
of 480 × 440 pixels, producing 211,200 total pixels.
HDTV approximates a screen composed of 1920 × 1080
pixels, producing 2,073,600 total pixels and by far a
greater detailed image than the analog system.
The Moving Picture Experts Group developed the
MPEG2 image compression standard to increase the
amount of video data transmitted in an HDTV system. By
compressing the broadcast video data, more information
could be broadcast in the same amount of bandwidth. The
MPEG2 compression technique can reduce the image
information by as much as 97 percent, but an average of
50 percent is typical. The compression technique is based
on the fact that the majority of the video images on a television screen do not change from frame to frame. For
example, a news broadcast has a persistent image, such as
a background, with very little movement requiring new
data. Parts of the image that are persistent do not need to
Chapter 23 Television and Video Display Units
Aspect ratio
Picture rate
Figure 23-38. ATSC digital TV compression formats.
Those listed in bold are HDTV formats.
be broadcast in each frame. This reduces the total amount
of image information that has to be transmitted. The same
technique is used for DVD, CD-RW, and still cameras.
Because more information can be transmitted using
a completely digital system, sound quality has also
greatly improved. HDTV incorporates the 5.1 channel
surround sound system into its standard. The 5.1 system
is composed of a left, right, center, left surround, right
surround, and a subwoofer signal. This is the same quality audio used in the best stereo systems available.
There are some misleading terms used when describing advanced television systems. The fast evolution of
these systems and the terminology used by advertisers
can often lead to disappointed consumers. Enhanced
definition television (EDTV) is a system that receives
digital transmissions and displays images at 480p or
higher. The fact that it can receive high definition television transmissions and decode them makes it an enhanced
system. However, actual HDTV displays images at 720p
or 1080i. You may have an HDTV receiver connected to
a display unit that cannot produce the higher display quality, thus defeating the purpose of HDTV. Some systems
simply take the existing NTSC system and double the
number of scanning lines, but this does not provide any
new image information. This is like using a photocopier
to double the size of an original image. Since no new
image information has been added, picture quality cannot
be enhanced.
Electronic Communication and Data Systems
Digital Light Projection Television
One of the latest developments in television is digital light projection (DLP) developed by Texas Instruments based on their digital mirror device (DMD). The
DMD is a precision light switch consisting of a rectangular array of microscopic mirrors. Look at Figure 23-39.
Each mirror is controlled separately. The entire array of
mirrors span across one chip. A DMD can contain an
array of over 1.3 million mirrors.
The DMD technology is combined with a light
source and lens to create a DLP system. Each individual
mirror corresponds to a digital signal that represents a
single pixel in the image to be created on the television
screen. The array of mirrors can be switched on and off
over one thousand times per second. The length of time
each mirror is switched on and off is used to produce an
array of light and dark spots on the target screen. Varying
the amount of time each mirror changes from light to dark
will produce a specific shade of gray on the screen.
For a full-color image to be produced, the DLP uses
a color filter. The reflected light passes through the color
wheel at the exact moment the required specific color is
needed to produce the desired image onto a screen. The
transparent lens on the filter can create over 16 million
different colors. A DLP television typically consists of a
single DMD chip, lamp, color wheel, and a projection
lens. See Figure 23-40. You can see the light source shining through the spinning color wheel. The light passes
through the color wheel filter and then strikes the DMD
and is reflected through the lens which projects the image
on the television screen.
Figure 23-40. A DMD device in a television application.
(Courtesy of Texas Instruments)
Figure 23-41. The flat-panel ViewSonic VPW 425″
plasma TV is capable of both television and computer
Flat-Panel Displays
Flat-panel displays have been associated with
portable computer systems for some years now. As electronic display technology evolves, display units for computers, televisions, and other forms of communication are
merging. Many televisions now use flat-panel technologies instead of picture tube technologies. Flat-panel displays are lightweight, thin, and have more applications
than the bulky CRT, Figure 23-41.
Mg0 layer
Rear plate
While a CRT uses a mask to isolate the individual pixels on a screen display, the flat-panel display does not. The
flat-panel display controls the individual pixels electrically.
Flat-panel displays typically sandwich a thin film of phosphorescent material or liquid crystal between two thin surfaces, Figure 23-42. One surface is covered with vertical
conductors and the other with horizontal conductors,
Transparent electrode
Liquid crystal
Color filter
Glass substrate
Xenon and
neon gas
Figure 23-39. An ant leg rests on the surface of an
array of DMD mirrors. (Courtesy of Texas Instruments)
Front plate
Transparent electrode
Glass substrate
Alignment layer
Figure 23-42. A—Simplified side view of a gas-plasma display. B—Simplified side view of a passive-matrix LCD display.
Chapter 23 Television and Video Display Units
forming a grid. At each point on the grid is a pixel. Each
pixel can produce a dot of light on the display unit.
Gas-plasma displays
Gas-plasma displays operate on the principle of electro-luminescence. Electro-luminescence is the display of
light created when a high frequency passes through a gas
to a layer of phosphor, resulting in the release of photons.
The electrical energy from releasing photons is better
known as producing light.
A gas-plasma display consists of millions of tiny
cells sandwiched between two glass plates. See
Figure 23-43. Each cell contains an inert gas and is
coated with a phosphorous material of red, blue, or green.
Transparent electrodes run horizontally behind the front
panel on top of the cells, and address electrodes run vertically along the rear glass panel beneath the cells. When
the address electrode and its corresponding transparent
electrode are energized, the gas, in an excited plasma
state, releases an ultraviolet light. The ultraviolet light
strikes the phosphorus coating inside the cell, causing the
cell to release a light corresponding to its color. By
varying the pulses of current, the entire light spectrum
can be duplicated.
surface. There are two categories of LCD: active and
passive. Passive displays are more affordable than active
displays because they require fewer transistors and are
less complex. Active-matrix displays are costly because
they use one or more transistors at every pixel.
Both active and passive displays are made up of
groups of individual screen areas referred to as pixel
areas. Each pixel area is made up of three color dots or
pixels: red, green, and blue. The combined effect of the
three pixels produces pixel areas representing different
colors. Varying the intensity of each pixel can produce
millions of colors. Combined with the surrounding areas,
the pixels form an image on the display screen.
How color liquid crystal displays work
To understand how LCD technology works, follow
along with Figure 23-44. The typical LCD panel is simple in construction. A backlight is required to generate
Electronic Communication and Data Systems
light. The light passing through the first filter results in
polarized light. Polarized light consists of light waves all
the same shape and of a single frequency rather than the
entire spectrum of light frequencies generated by the
backlight. The light passing through the first filter consists only of vertical waves.
A liquid crystal sits between the two filters. When a
voltage is applied to the liquid crystal, the molecules in
the crystal rotate from the vertical position. When the vertical light passes through the energized liquid crystal, it
too rotates, changing into a horizontal light wave that is
blocked by the second filter. The second filter allows only
vertical waves to pass through. The amount of voltage
applied to the crystal determines the amount of rotation
from the vertical position to a horizontal position. The
more voltage applied, the less light that will pass through
the second filter.
Passive-matrix display
applied to
Light is blocked
Liquid crystal display (LCD) panels
The most common flat-panel display is the liquid
crystal display (LCD). The liquid crystal display (LCD)
operates on the principle of polarized light passing
through tiny crystals of liquid. Light is composed of
many different light waves. Each light wave travels at
different angles. A voltage applied to the crystal causes
the crystal to warp and, in turn, determine the amount of
polarized light passing through to the display screen.
The LCD is classified according to the electronic
circuitry and method used to apply light to the display's
Light passes
There are two types of electrical circuitry used to
energize the crystal area, active and passive, Figure 23-45.
In a passive-matrix display, a grid of semitransparent conductors run to each crystal used as part of the individual
pixel area. The grid is divided into two major circuits,
columns and rows. Transistors running along the top and
the side of the display unit head the columns and rows.
A ground applied to a row and a charge applied to a
column activates a pixel area. The voltage is applied
briefly and must rely on screen persistence and a fast
refresh rate. Because current must travel along the row and
column until it arrives at the designated pixel, response
time is slow.
Active-matrix display
In an active-matrix display, each individual pixel in
the grid has its own individual transistor. The activematrix provides a better image than the passive-matrix.
The active-matrix image is brighter because each cell can
have a constant supply of voltage.
The most common active-matrix display is the thin
film transistor liquid crystal display (TFT-LCD).
Often, this type of display is referred to simply as a TFT
display. The TFT display consists of a matrix of thin film
transistors spread across the entire screen. Each transistor
controls a single pixel on the display. There are over
one million transistors in a display, three transistors at
each pixel area, and one transistor for each color pixel,
Figure 23-46. The liquid crystals in the TFT display are
energized in a pattern representing the data to be displayed.
The conventional television has used the CRT to
display images because the original LCD design had
limitations that could not compete with larger display
units. As the size of the display unit grew to over
18 inches, problems developed with the brightness of the
display and in converting the analog television signal to a
digital signal and to a wide-angle viewing area without
image distortions. These problems were solved with the
introduction of thin film transistor LCD technology.
First polarizing filter
Second polarizing filter
Figure 23-44. A typical LCD panel is based on the principles of polarized light waves.
Front panel glass
Screen area
cell row
Figure 23-43. Gas-plasma technology.
Rear glass
Pixels are activated at intersections
Figure 23-45. In an active-matrix display, each individual cell in the grid has its own individual transistor. The activematrix provides a better image than does the passive.
Chapter 23 Television and Video Display Units
Electronic Communication and Data Systems
unit designed to accept input from many different
sources. It allows a display to be used with television systems and PC systems as well.
You will notice horizontal and vertical sweep controls
typical in a CRT imaging system are absent in this unit.
Since the image is digital, there is no need for such circuitry. There are several items in the display controller that
are more commonly associated with a computer system.
Philips SXGA Triple-Input Display
Standards Organizations
To illustrate how one display system can be used in
multiple applications, let's look at the Philips SXGA
triple-input TFT display system controller, Figure 23-48.
The triple input display system controller accepts input
from analog, digital, and parallel sources. The analog
input accepts the traditional UHF and VHF frequencies.
The digital input accepts HDTV broadcasts over cable, as
well as from personal computer systems. The parallel
interface accepts input from other sources such as USB
connection devices like a camera or a recorder.
The block diagram for the SXGA triple input is different from traditional television. This system requires a
microprocessor and special modules to process digital
information. At the opposite end there is just one output,
the panel port.
Repeating display pattern
TFT transistor
One complete pixel with
three transistors
Figure 23-46. Each pixel area on the TFT display consists of three transistor-controlled color fields. The three
color fields—red, green, and blue—are combined to form
various shades and hues of color.
Advantages of LCD displays over CRT displays:
• LCDs can be constructed much smaller and are
lighter in weight than CRT displays.
• LCDs are more economical to run because they
require less power.
• LCDs generate less heat.
• LCDs create images that are more detailed.
• LCDs produce less electromagnetic interference
Disadvantages of LCD displays as compared to CRT
• Lack of an industry-wide standard.
• Higher cost for a comparable size.
• Complexity of scaling images without distortion.
Display Resolution
Resolution is a measurement of an image's quality.
The higher the resolution, the higher the quality or more
detailed the image, Figure 23-47. The term resolution
can also be used to describe the detail produced by printers, digital cameras, and any similar type of graphic
equipment and is measured in dots per inch. Display resolution is the amount of detail a monitor is capable of displaying and is measured in pixels. A display unit with a
maximum resolution of 1920 × 1080 has 1920 pixels
There are several organizations that are presently
creating standards for LCD type panel displays. They are
as follows: Video Electronics Standards Organization
(VESA), Digital Flat Panel (DFP), and Digital Visual
Interface (DVI). The variance has caused much confusion
concerning video display standards, not only for screen
display resolution, but also for standard connector construction. Look at the table in Figure 23-49 for a brief
summary of the three major standards groups involved in
the development of a standard for their individual interest. The VESA workgroup is headed by the VESA
standards organization. The DFP is led by Compaq, and
the DVI is led by Intel. Each group consists of members
from across the television and computer industry.
PC port
Figure 23-47. Shown are two different resolutions of the
same image. The top picture is low resolution. The bottom picture is a higher resolution.
along the horizontal axis and 1080 along the vertical axis.
A display unit capable of a high resolution can display at lower resolutions, but, since the display uses fewer
pixels per area at lower resolutions, the image loses its
A display unit designed to operate at one frequency
and resolution is much simpler in design than a display
for multiple frequencies and resolutions. Typically, the
electronic system controlling a multiple resolution and
frequency display uses microprocessor technology similar to that found in a computer system. In fact, the modern digital television system resembles a computer more
than the earlier analog television systems.
Display manufacturers design displays to be used by
multiple applications. This means that a single display
can be used for analog and digital television systems, as
well as computer systems. This is achieved by integrating
a controller board capable of handling various inputs. The
Philips SXGA triple input display controller is one such
3x ADC
Memory port
Max resolution
1280 × 1024
1280 × 1024
1920 × 1080
Connection signal
Analog, USB,
IEEE 1394
Digital only
Analog and
Figure 23-49. Various standards for LCD type panel displays.
Figure 23-48. Block diagram of the Philips SAA6714 SXGA triple-input TFT-display controller.
Standards for TFT
Chapter 23 Television and Video Display Units
Home Theater Connector Types
There are many different connector types developed
for HDTV and various other displays. The display connectors are designed either for digital or analog transmissions, or for a combination of both digital and analog.
Some manufacturers have tried to cut production costs by
designing connectors to work with both television and
computer systems. While making multiple-application
connections is reasonable, it has caused some physical
and electrical incompatibility between designs due to a
lack of one general standard for all manufacturers. As
long as different standards exist, compatibility issues will
arise between the devices from different manufacturers.
Look at the various connection designs in Figure 23-50.
A home theater center can consist of many different
electronic devices connected together. The equipment
that comprises a complete home theater may involve a
wide variety of cable connections. Audio cable does not
require shielding from interference or cause interference
the way video signals do. The speaker wiring has a low
Digital only DVI
Analog only
Digital Single Link
Digital Dual Link
Figure 23-50. Various connection designs.
Electronic Communication and Data Systems
frequency and does not use a carrier wave because it
transmits the sound pattern as an analog signal. Video
cables must be shielded to protect the video signal from
interference and, in turn, so the video cable does not
broadcast radio wave interference to surrounding devices.
You need to be able to identify each type of connection
and understand its capabilities.
RF and F-type
RF and F-type connections support the poorest quality video images and are found on the oldest technologies. The RF and F-type cables use standard coaxial cable
made of a solid or stranded copper core conductor. The
core conductor is surrounded by a thick insulator material. The insulator material is completely wrapped around
by a conductive mesh or foil referred to as the shield. The
shield protects the core conductor from outside electromagnetic interference. RF and F-type cables provide the
poorest signal quality transfer between support home
entertainment devices. Refer to Figure 23-33.
Composite video
Digital and Analog
Combination DVI
Composite video cables use only one cable for the
video signal and two or more for stereo sound. See
Figure 23-51. The composite video will provide a better
signal than RF or F-type cable connections but worse
than S-video or component video.
S-video is a four-pin connector that delivers separate
signals for video signal chrominance (color) and luminance (brightness). It is a very simple way to connect
components together because there is no way to misconnect the audio and video cables. There is a nine-pin version that is used for video-in and video-out (VIVO) configurations. The nine-pin connector allows for video to be
streamed in both directions. The four-pin connector is
used for applications that only require video in one direction. See Figure 23-51B.
Figure 23-51. Various home theater cables. A—Composite Video. B—S-Video. C—Component Video.
High Definition Multimedia Interface
High Definition Multimedia Interface (HDMI) is
used to supply video and audio in an uncompressed alldigital signal format. See Figure 23-52. HDMI supports
high definition television and Dolby 5.1 using a single
cable. The digital audio is as high as 192 kHz and the digital video is as high as 350 MHz and 10.2 Gbps of signal
data. At the time of this writing, HDMI provides the best
picture and sound quality available. The HDMI uses the
new xvYCC standard which is an enhanced color standard that exceeds the HDTV standard. The xvYCC is
short for Extended YCC Colorimetry for Video Applications. The term “colorimetry” means identification of
colors using three sets of numbers representing red, green
and blue. This new standard was designed to enhance the
viewing experience and can support 1.8 times as many
colors as existing HDTV signals. The new standard is
also designed to support blu-ray technologies for digital
movie disc and newest video game technology.
The ToskLink optical connector, Figure 23-52B, is a
proprietary connection developed jointly by Sony and
Phillips. The ToskLink cable is limited to audio at this
time and used to support audio signals between home
theater equipment. The ToskLink provides a connection
for fiber optic cable. Fiber optic cable is immune to interference because it utilizes light to transfer the signal, not
radio waves. A light signal is not susceptible to interference emitting from other cables and radio signal sources.
Display systems, still evolving, have yet to designate
one universal standard. This evolution is similar to when the
video tape recording systems introduced the Beta and VHS
taping systems. While the Beta system was technically
Component video
The component video is found on high-performance
devices and produces better quality pictures than S-video
or composite video. The cables used are constructed from
flexible coaxial cable. Each individual cable consists of a
single conductor surrounded by a dielectric and a shield
to protect it from receiving or generating interference.
See Figure 23-51C. Component video does not carry the
audio signal. Audio signals are typically supplied through
two separate ports.
Figure 23-52. HDMI and ToskLink connectors. A—The HDMI connector closely resembles the standard USB connector
found on PCs. B—The ToskLink connector is protected from damage by plastic end pieces. The connectors are susceptible
to damage from scratches or even dust collected on the ends.
Chapter 23 Television and Video Display Units
superior to the VHS system, the VHS system became the
designated standard because of its convenience.
Review Questions for Section 23.4
1. What three things are needed to have a complete
high definition television system?
2. What is multicasting?
3. What is datacasting?
4. What does the acronym ATSC represent?
5. What does the acronym NTSC represent?
6. What do the lowercase letters i and p represent in
association with frame rates?
7. What are the two common display formats for
8. What does the 5.1 channel surround sound system
consist of?
9. How many pixels are required for each color display’s pixel area?
10. What are the two classifications of LCD displays
based upon the number of transistors in relation to
the number of points in the image?
11. What does the acronym DMD represent?
1. A television picture is produced by scanning an
image captured from a television camera onto a
cathode ray tube.
2. Scanning is the point-to-point examination of a
3. The scanning system used in the United States is
the interlace system. It consists of 525 scanning
lines. Scanning starts at the top left-hand corner of
the picture. It scans from left to right on the odd
numbered lines and then scans the even numbered
lines. All of this takes place 30 times per second.
4. Black-and-white signals are made by a single color
picture tube. Color signals are made by a three
color (red, blue, and green) picture tube.
5. The bandwidth of a TV signal is 6 megahertz. The
VHF band covers channels 2 through 13. The UHF
band covers channels 14 through 83.
6. Video cassette recorders are used for recording and
playback of magnetic tapes.
7. The image on a large-screen TV is made by projecting three color images onto a screen.
8. Satellite TV is used for communication worldwide
through the use of satellites that orbit the earth in a
geostationary (synchronous) position.
9. Traditional analog television uses vacuum tube
imaging to capture images, while HDTV uses CCD
cameras to capture images and convert them to digital information.
10. A digital camera uses a charged coupled device
(CCD) to capture an image and convert it into digital signals that can be stored or transmitted.
11. A pixel is a single color element of a color pixel area.
12. HDTV is associated with display formats 720p and
13. MPEG2 is the most commonly used video compression standard for HDTV.
14. Dolby surround sound consists of 5.1 channels.
15. The most popular LCD technology for high-quality
color images is the TFT-LCD.
Test Your Knowledge
Please do not write in the text. Place your answers on
a separate sheet of paper.
1. The dots that make up a picture are called
__________ __________.
2. Briefly explain the interlace scanning system.
3. What causes an electron beam to move from left to
4. The speed of an electron stream from an electron
gun is increased by:
a. grids.
b. target plates.
c. scanning.
d. None of the above.
5. A composite video signal contains the:
a. video information.
b. sound information.
c. Both of the above.
d. None of the above.
6. The __________ __________ __________ is used
to produce images in most televisions.
7. What are the three colors used to produce a color
TV image?
8. What is the purpose of having more than two heads
on a VCR?
9. _____ allows for two to four channels to be broadcast in the same single-channel bandwidth.
10. To be considered a complete HDTV system, three
main components are required: a digital _____,
digital _____, and a _____ _____ capable of producing images at the high definition TV resolution.
11. The _____ _____ _____ _____ developed standards for digital television broadcasting and
Electronic Communication and Data Systems
12. _____ is a wide-screen aspect ratio similar to that
found in common movie theaters.
13. The Moving Picture Experts Group developed the
_____ image compression standard to increase
the amount of video data transmitted in an HDTV
14. _____ percent of a typical transmitted picture does
not change from picture frame to picture frame.
15. The most common active-matrix display is the
_____ - _____.
Matching Questions
Match the following terms with their correct
a. Sync separator.
b. Sync amplifier.
c. Mixer.
d. Vertical oscillator.
e. Video amplifier.
f. Horizontal AFC.
16. The output of this device provides the sawtooth
voltage to the deflection coils.
17. Removes the horizontal and vertical sync pulses
transmitted as part of the composite video signal.
18. Compares the frequencies of the horizontal oscillator and sync pulse.
19. Amplifies the demodulated picture signal and feeds
it to the grid of the CRT.
20. Combines the incoming video signal with a local
oscillator signal.
21. A voltage amplifier stage in which the sync pulse is
For Discussion
1. Discuss the function of each of the following controls found in a TV receiver. State the circuit that is
regulated by each control.
a. Horizontal hold.
b. Brightness.
c. Vertical hold.
d. Fine-tuning.
e. Channel selector.
f. Vertical linearity.
g. Horizontal linearity.
h. Height control.
i. Contrast.
j. Width control.
2. Explain the process of negative transmission used
in television in the United States.
3. How does the vertical integration network separate
the vertical sync pulse?
4. If dc amplifiers were used in the video section,
would dc restoration be necessary?
5. Why are both UHF and VHF channels needed for
6. Research and discuss the various types of video
7. Discuss what you think television will be like in the
year 2020.
8. How did development of the shadow mask picture
tube promote the reality of color TV?
9. Why would a digital television image be sharper
than a conventional television image?
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