720p or 1080i?

My new camcorder can record in 720p or 1080i. I know that 1080 is better than 720, but p is better than i. So which should I choose? I’m leaning towards 720p because it seems to need less memory for the same length of recording, meaning more recording time and less space used to store it on a hard drive or DVD. Does the progressive scan make up for the lower resolution? Is there a really good reason to use 1080i?

I wouldn’t recommend interlaced video if you’re going to use the camera handheld - this is going to look crappy.

On a tripod, the higher resolution may look better, if the scene is relatively still. Just keep in mind that fast-moving objects are going to be a little fuzzy looking with interlaced video.


Could you please be less verbose in your responses in the future? :slight_smile:

my apologies, 720 pixels

720p, if it’s 60 frames per second. 720 lines vs 540 lines per 1/60th of a second. There are ways of “adaptive deinterlacing” that make the most of interlaced video, but in general, interlacing was a method of video compression that should have died with the advent of HD.

Which camera is it?

Your video would look better if you recorded in 720p and then upscaled to 1080p than if your record in 1080p.

Also, 720p is 1280x720. The number is always the height, not the width. Plain old SD TVs could handle 720x480, but it’s now referred to as 480p.

Samsung HMX-T10.

I’ve only used it a little bit, but I like it so far. I’ll probably post a review of it in a month or so, when I’ve got a good feel for it. I got it for $50 cheaper than that at Fry’s, FYI.

Did you mean “than if you record in 1080i”? If not, what’s the reason it would look better being recorded at 720p and upscaled to 1080p rather than just recording it at 1080p in the first place?

From what I can tell, that Amazon description indicates that it can record 1920x1080p at 30fps or 1920x1080i at 60fps. So, you should be able to record full-fledged 1920x1080p video – my Sanyo camera has the same setting, and the 1920x1080p/30fps setting is displayed as the second-best choice in the menu (the 1920x1080i/60fps setting is first) even though I think the former setting looks significantly better than the latter.

ETA: OK, I looked at the actual manual, and I guess this one doesn’t have the 1920x1080p/30fps setting. My bad.

If you’ve seen a “freeze-frame” or capture from an interlaced (i) video, you can see in any motion the “comb” effect. § is better. Besides, in most cases other than scenery, how important is a bit extra resolution? FOr action shots, it will look worse interlaced. FOr scenery, use interlaced and a tripod as suggested above, and avoid panning the camera.

I did. Sorry about the typo. I also meant 480i for the SD TV resolution.

P is not pixels, it stands for Progressive. Which is the type of interlacing.