Getting to know HDTV equipment
Typical Set-top box (STB)
Set-Top Box (STB) processes the received signal from cable, satellite or off-air into the
video and audio signals needed to drive the HD Ready television and/or the Home Theatre
decoder. The video outputs may be analog Y, Pr, Pb or RGB or may be in digital form in a
DVI or HDMI connection. Some STBs include also additional video/audio inputs to
enable the connection and selection of external devices, such as a DVD.
The Personal Video Recorder (PVR) functions similarly to the STB, but includes additional
functionality to record, store, playback and edit programs to form a personal program
stream from the incoming program content. The PVR also may include a program guide and the
capability to record selectively based on program titles, schedules or type.
The illustration shows the connections available on most models of set-top boxes (STBs).
For a specific device, consult the owner's guide provided by the manufacturer, or if you
need additional information, contact your retailer, the manufacturer, or click on the CDTV
Ask the Experts
link. Important note: this is an example only, brand and model configurations may vary.
Typical HD Television
This illustration includes the common connections available
on most models of integrated HD Televisions and is included for illustration of the
interconnection techniques. For specific devices, consult the documents provided by the
manufacturer with it and any unanswered questions may be addressed to the vendor or to the
CDTV Ask the Experts web page. Video/Audio/Control connections via HDMI or
Firewire or video-only via DVI are made point-to-point using the cables noted above.
Connections are provided on the front for temporary uses, e.g. for connection of
headphones or of a camcorder. Connections are provided on the rear for the permanent
this is an example only, brand and model configurations may vary. Shown in this example
- antenna connections for over-the-air and cable reception. Generally both DTV and NTSC
signals are accepted on all terrestrial and cable channels. F-series coaxial cable is used
- one input that carries uncompressed digital components, HDTV or SDTV, in a secure,
encrypted form. The HDMI (High Definition Multi-Media Interface) interconnection carries
video, audio and optionally control data The DVI interconnection carries digital video
data only. HDMI is backward compatible to DVI.
- one or two
sets of input connections for HD analog components in Y, Pr, Pb form. (720p, 1080i, 480p).
Interconnection is improved with higher-end component video cables, using RCA
- two inputs and one output for composite analogue audio (stereo) and video information,
the S-VHS jacks allow for improved video reproduction, but do not carry audio, which needs
to be connected with the composite cabling.- two inputs for analog component video, either
HDTV or SDTV
- one input for analog component (RGB) in a mini DB-15 connector, in computer format
Receiver to connect with an HDTV
Shown is a typical Dolby Digital A/V Receiver, which
includes the full decoder for the Dolby Digital AC3 audio and the outputs to the 5 main
speakers and to the sub-woofer (LFE). The illustration is generic and for a specific
device consult the owner's guide provided by the manufacturer, or, if you need additional
information, contact your retailer, the manufacturer, or click on the CDTV Ask the
Experts link. Important note: this is an example only, brand and model
configurations may vary.
Connection ports for the example A/V receiver shown above include:
Antenna connections for AM and FM radio reception.
An input and one output of composite NTSC in both encoded (N) and S-video formats,
with analog stereo audio. The output may be selected to the internal DVD. RCA cables are
used to interconnect.
An input and output for analog component video SDTV (480p). This output may be
selected to a component, progressive DVD signal (480p). Interconnection is through video
cables equipped with RCA cables.
An Input, in optical and/or digital coax form, for the audio data received from the
HDTV that is to be decoded into multi-channel sound. Multi-channel sound from DVDs or
other sources may also be decoded.
- Two analog audio inputs using RCA connectors, for ancillary sources such as cassette
An output from the audio decoder to drive an external self-powered sub-woofer (LFE)
Outputs to drive the six loudspeakers, Front L/R, Rear (surround) L/R, C and
passive LFE (sub-woofer).