Video Formats

This page contains an overview of all relevant standard definition television (SDTV) and high definition television (HDTV) formats used in digital TV or video products. Apart from different scanning modes and frame rates, there are only a few SDTV and HDTV formats, which are shown in the following illustration:

SDTV and HDTV Video Formats

Standard Digital TV and Video Formats

The following table contains a list of all relevant formats defined by digital TV and video standards. The column Dimension contains the size of the pixel array used for encoding the video - this is not the necessary size for displaying the video, because many video standards do not operate with square pixel. The column Aspect Ratio contains the aspect ratio of the resulting display and the necessary pixel aspect ratio (given in brackets) to achieve this. For example, the pixel array of an NTSC video frame is 720 x 480, which corresponds to an aspect ratio of 3 to 2. In order to display the video frame with the correct 4:3 aspect ratio, a pixel aspect ratio of 0.90 is used. For more details see the page Aspect Ratio.

SystemDimension (w x h)Aspect RatioFrame RateComment
480i29.97 720 x 480 4:3
(0.90)
29.97 fps
(59.94 fields)
Standard Definition TV format with interlaced scanning and NTSC color encoding. Sometimes the notation is 525/59.94/2:1 - indicating 525 (visible and blanking) lines displayed with 59.94 Hz in interlaced mode.
This video format and the NTSC standard is mainly used in US, Canada, Japan and South Korea.
480i29.97
Widescreen
720 x 480 16:9
(1.20)
29.97 fps
(59.94 fields)
Widescreen (16:9) Standard Definition TV format with interlaced scanning. The video format has the same pixel count as standard 480i - however, the pixel aspect ratio is multiplied by 4:3. This anamorphic video format was introduced to provide wide aspect ratio content (film) without changing the 480i component video infrastructure.
480p29.97 720 x 480 4:3
(0.90)
29.97 fps Standard Definition TV format with progressive scanning at 29.97 Hz and NTSC color encoding.
480p29.97
Widescreen
720 x 480 16:9
(1.20)
29.97 fps Widescreen (16:9) Standard Definition TV format with progressive scanning at 29.97 Hz and NTSC color encoding. The video format has the same pixel count as standard 480p - however, the pixel aspect ratio is multiplied by 4:3.
576i25 720 x 576 4:3
(1.07)
25 fps
(50 fields)
Standard Definition TV format with interlaced scanning and PAL color encoding. Sometimes the notation is 625/50/2:1 - indicating 625 (visible and blanking) lines displayed with 50 Hz in interlaced mode.
This video format and the PAL standard is mainly used in Europe, Asia and Australia.
576i25
Widescreen
720 x 576 16:9
(1.42)
25 fps
(50 fields)
Widescreen (16:9) Standard Definition TV format with interlaced scanning. The video format has the same pixel count as standard 576i - however, the pixel aspect ratio is multiplied by 4:3. This anamorphic video format was introduced to provide wide aspect ratio content (film) without changing the 576i component video infrastructure.
576p25 720 x 576 4:3
(1.07)
25 fps Standard Definition TV format with progressive scanning at 25 Hz and PAL color encoding.
576p25
Widescreen
720 x 576 16:9
(1.42)
25 fps Widescreen (16:9) Standard Definition TV format with progressive scanning at 25 Hz and PAL color encoding. The video format has the same pixel count as standard 576p - however, the pixel aspect ratio is multiplied by 4:3.
720p24
720p23.976
1280 x 720 16:9
(1.00)
24 fps
23.976 fps
High Definition TV format with 1 M pixel for digital cinema film with 24 frames per second and progressive scanning. The frame rate 24 is optionally modified by the ratio 1000/1001 which leads to 23.976, in order to be compatible with existing NTSC equipment.
720p25 1280 x 720 16:9
(1.00)
25 fps High Definition TV format with 1 M pixel, progressive scanning at 25 Hz and PAL color encoding.
720p30
720p29.97
1280 x 720 16:9
(1.00)
30 fps
29.97 fps
High Definition TV format with 1 M pixel, progressive scanning at 30 Hz and NTSC color encoding. The frame rate 30 is optionally modified by the ratio 1000/1001 which leads to 29.97, in order to be compatible with existing NTSC equipment.
720p50 1280 x 720 16:9
(1.00)
50 fps High Definition TV format with 1 M pixel, progressive scanning at 50 Hz and PAL color encoding.
720p60
720p59.94
1280 x 720 16:9
(1.00)
60 fps
59.94 fps
High Definition TV format with 1 M pixel, progressive scanning at 60 Hz and NTSC color encoding. The frame rate 60 is optionally modified by the ratio 1000/1001 which leads to 59.94, in order to be compatible with existing NTSC equipment.
1080i25 1920 x 1080 16:9
(1.00)
25 fps
(50 fields)
High Definition TV format with 2 M pixel and PAL color encoding, displayed with 50 Hz (50 fields = 25 frames) in interlaced mode.
1080i30
1080i29.97
1920 x 1080 16:9
(1.00)
30 fps
(60 fields)
29.97 fps
(59.94 fields)
High Definition TV format with 2 M pixel and NTSC color encoding, displayed with 60 Hz (60 fields = 30 frames) in interlaced mode. The frame rate 30 is optionally modified by the ratio 1000/1001 which leads to 29.97, in order to be compatible with existing NTSC equipment.
1080p24
1080p23.976
1920 x 1080 16:9
(1.00)
24 fps
23.976 fps
High Definition TV format with 2 M pixel for digital cinema film with 24 frames per second and progressive scanning. The frame rate 24 is optionally modified by the ratio 1000/1001 which leads to 23.976, in order to be compatible with existing NTSC equipment.
1080p25 1920 x 1080 16:9
(1.00)
25 fps High Definition TV format with 2 M pixel, progressive scanning at 25 Hz and PAL color encoding.
1080p30
1080p29.97
1920 x 1080 16:9
(1.00)
30 fps
29.97 fps
High Definition TV format with 2 M pixel, progressive scanning at 30 Hz or 29.97 Hz and NTSC color encoding. The frame rate 30 is optionally modified by the ratio 1000/1001 which leads to 29.97, in order to be compatible with existing NTSC equipment.
1080p50 1920 x 1080 16:9
(1.00)
50 fps High Definition TV format with 2 M pixel, progressive scanning at 50 Hz and PAL color encoding.
1080p60
1080p59.94
1920 x 1080 16:9
(1.00)
60 fps
59.94 fps
High Definition TV format with 2 M pixel, progressive scanning at 60 Hz or 59.94 Hz and NTSC color encoding. The frame rate 60 is optionally modified by the ratio 1000/1001 which leads to 59.94, in order to be compatible with existing NTSC equipment.
1440x
1080i25
1440 x 1080 16:9
(1.33)
25 fps
(50 fields)
High Definition video format for consumer HD digital video products with pixel aspect ratio of 1.33 and interlaced scanning with 50 Hz. The format is used in HDV (High Definition Video) camcorder with MPEG-2 compression and in AVCHD (Advanced Video Codec High Definition) camcorder with MPEG-4 H.264 compression.
1440x
1080i29.97
1440 x 1080 16:9
(1.33)
29.97 fps
(59.94 fields)
High Definition video format for consumer HD digital video products with pixel aspect ratio of 1.33 and interlaced scanning with 59.94 Hz. The format is used in HDV (High Definition Video) camcorder with MPEG-2 compression and in AVCHD (Advanced Video Codec High Definition) camcorder with MPEG-4 H.264 compression.

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