Why haven't companies jumped all over HD?


SatelliteGuys Pro
Original poster
Jun 5, 2004
There's a definate WOW factor every time I bring a friend, or a family member over my house and put on some HD content from Voom... last night I had my brother in law over and we were watching some CSI, great quality, then the commercials switch down to ugly old SD. It got me thinking...

Why are all the commercials still in SD? I mean if it were me, and I owned let's say a car company. I could see myself producing a nice HD quality commercial of a car racing through some mountainscape and broadcasting it during CSI. I mean what could be more eye catching than nice well produced HD commercials? It sure would catch my attention more than SD ones, which now when they do come on I leave the room- do something- and just come back when the shows on. I thought what a major marketing tool that's being completely UN-utilizied..what do you people think?
It does not make sense for advertisers to produce commercials in HD yet. The amount of viewership that are HD capable are quite small compare to those SD/Analog viewers.
Yeah it doesn't make sense that they don't even have hd promo for hd shows. I think it's too much trouble for them to do separate commercials for hd and sd. They still have some intern hit a switch to go between sd and hd and I guess it's too much to expect the poor sap to do it for the commercials as well as the show (esp. when said sap already tends to forget to hit the switch when the show resumes after the comm.)
Yeah, the commercial would be letterboxed for SD viewers which would still yield a better looking picture, and it would definately catch the eye of HDTV viewers.. but how is it that channels CBS can show Everybody Loves Raymond for example, in SD mode on their SD channel, or in HD without letterbox formats? They could also do that for their commercials I think. Also hasn't the amount of HDTV sets sold like doubled in the last two years in this country?
2 years ago during the Superbowl the ads for upcoming movies were in HD and full DD5.1 as well. I remember those commercials because it went from crappy SD commercial to WOW factor both audibly and visually. They'll catch on soon enough.
Dvlos said:
... Also hasn't the amount of HDTV sets sold like doubled in the last two years in this country?

Yes, the number of sets capable of HD has increased, but sadly those same consumers aren't buying HD content yet. I didn't buy an HD set until I saw the availability of VOOM. I just didn't see any reason to upgrade my TV until there was enough HD programming. VOOM pushed me over the edge in the buying decision and now I am a (mostly) happy Va Va Voomer.

I go over to a lot of my friends houses and they show off their large, wide-screen HD-capable televisions, but they use SD programming and the sets PQ is not that great. When they come over to my house they are blown away by the picture on my Sony GRAND WEGA 50 inch LCD RP set (Voom ROCKS!). They just don't understand HD yet. They don't know that they need to start tuning in the digital stations OTA content to get true HD.

I don't know what it will take to get the masses tuned in to HDTV.
There's a Chevy commercial for their upcoming models that was presented in HD for the Oscars (I think) and every now and then I will see it in HD OTA, but when it's shown in SD, it looks pristine, better than any other SD commercial I've ever seen.
Damn I haven't seen a single commercial in HD, I'm surprised that all the commercials that have been shot in the last few years aren't shot on over to HD only channels like Discovery HD, ESPN HD.
Yes I remember those movie commercials in HD during the super bowl a couple of years back. They really looked amazing. HDNET's show is great also...1/2 hr show shows nothing but trailers. Really good stuff.....wish VOOM had HDNET though. I have seen a couple of movie trailers on MONSTERSHD.
It doesn't really surprise me that more companies are not jumping on board and producing commercials via the HD format...HD is still a niche market. Most business would rather expend resources targeting a larger, more mature market. Targeting a niche market, can be expensive, erode profit margins, and require substantial capital expenditures.

However, there are certain rewards to be had if you develop a niche market. I'm sure the management at Voom is hopeful that they will see substantial returns in the future, for the resources they are expending today.
I still don't see the major drawback with developing commercials in HD and then down-scaling, just like they do movies. Movies are made in 2.35 to 1 aspect ration, some movies come on DVD at 1.88 : 1 which is perfect for 16x9 TVs and there are cropped and modified 1.33: 1 (4:3 full frame) movies for those who want that. Again... the best application I can think of is for car commercials, film a car driving on some black street with amazing scenery wizzing around, on an HD channel you'd crap your pants, for everyone else they'd just see a really good looking commercial, cropped to fit a 4:3 TV. With all the money they pay just for a GOOD IDEA on a commercial, how can these Fortune 500 not take advantage of snagging HDTV viewers (who most likely have some dough to spend ANYWAY) if they can?
Dylos I agree that it would seem to benefit companies to produce HD commercials. But the simple fact that it is not occurring with great regularity tells me that many companies believe that the costs of producing commericals in HD outweigh the benefits. I really believe it goes back to the fact that HD is perceived as a niche market that still in its infancy stage.

At some point, the number of HD sets sold will reach a saturation point where companies will be tripping over themselves to produce HD commercials as fast as they can.

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