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[OT]VHS in the UK

On Fri, 2004-07-23 at 20:09, Jerry Feldman wrote:

> This is a bit OT, but I was wondering if VHS tapes could be used in the
> UK. My gut feel is no since we use NTSC and Europe uses PAL (I think). 

The short answer is no, an NTSC VHS tape won't play in a PAL VHS 
player hooked up to a PAL tv. I believe the physical hardware 
and the media form-factor is identical in both cases; if I understand 
correctly, the difference is essentially just the frame rate and 
resolution of the signal. 

So an NTSC vcr wouldn't be compatible with a PAL tv, and a PAL vcr 
wouldn't work with an NTSC tv. However, I have seen high-end 
multi-format vcrs that can play both formats; in the US these would 
have to transcode the PAL signal in order to pass an NTSC signal to 
the tv, and the equivalent in the UK would have to do the reverse. 

Also, I'm not sure if PAL is everywhere in Europe; I was under the 
impression that it was just the UK. 

John Abreau / Executive Director, Boston Linux & Unix
Email jabr at / WWW / PGP-Key-ID 0xD5C7B5D9
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