Ten Cricket HD on Airtel Digital TV and Dish TV

The ongoing West Indies vs India series is being Telecast in Ten Cricket. Now they have come up with a High Definition channel Ten Cricket HD, which is telecast in 1080i and 5.1 surround sound. This channel is currently available on the following DTH:

Update(10June 2011):

Now it is available in TataSky as well.


But no signs of this channel in TataSky, BIG TV, Videocon and Sundirect yet.


Reliance Digital TV 250 HD Like Channels : Truth about this claim

After the Dish TV’s 30+ HD channels claim, it’s turn of Reliance BIG TV with 250 HD like quality channels. They have given the advertisement in all leading newspapers.

That too they claim 1080p & 10 times the existing image quality. I want to tell you, this complete nonsense claim. They have only very few HD channels(1080i) and most of them do not have 5.1 audio itself! They are not doing anything to improve the image quality or have HD source for all these channels. Teh interesting part is they are not even telling it is 1080i or 720p picture resolution. 1080p channels are not available in India . Not even in Tata Sky which is the best HD DTH available in India as of now. 1080p transmissions are resource hugry and I don’t expect them in India in next 5 years. Even in countries like US, there are very few full HD 1080p channels.

They are just doing a ad gimmick to get the attention. Period.

But they have added new HD channels like Star Plus HD, Star Movies HD and Start Sports HD today.

Tata Sky launches Star Movies HD, Star World HD, Start Gold HD and Star PlusHD

Tata Sky launched four new High Definition Channels today 15th April 2011.

1) Star Movies HD

2)Star World HD

3) Star Gold HD

4) Star Plus HD

All these channels offers 1080i HD resolution with Dolby 5.1 Audio. Previously Star Plus HD was available in Upscaled mode. Now it is offered with truw HD resolution 16:9 aspect ratio along with other HD channels.

Now, Tata Sky  is best DTH in terms of true HD contents with 6 full time HD channels ( Include Discover Channel HD and National Geographic HD ). They also show IPL in HD!!!

But they do not have Movies Now HD.

Star Movies HD India: Available on Tata Sky DTH

Tata Sky DTH has launched Start Movies HD in India. This High Definition channel shows the same program as in the SD channel. But these offer 1080i HD resolution with Dolby 5.1 sound.

These are available in Tata Sky HD STB or Tata Sky HD Plus DVR.


Star Movies HD Channel Number on Tata Sky: 342

Star Movies HD Screenshots below:

Dish TV HD Channels: 30 High Definition Channels claim true or not!

Dish TV TruHD claims to have added 30 channels. But the truth is they have only 3 channels in HD quality 1080i with 16:9 apspect ratio:

1) Nat Geo HD
2) Discovery HD

3) Movies Now HD


The ESPN HD  and Star Cricket HD are also real High definition channels. But they are available only for some events like ICC World cup.

The remaining 27 channels are just upscaled ones. You won’t find any difference in quality( may be they are slightly better than Dish TV SD channels due to higher bit rate) . If you compare them to Tata Sky SD channels, they will have same quality. So don’t get fooled by the 30 HD channels news.

HD DTH Comparison: TataSky HD vs Airtel HD vs Dish TV HD vs BIG TV HD vs SunDirect HD

Update: Current list of HD Channels in India are:

  • Discovery HD
  • NGC HD
  • History HD
  • Movies Now HD
  • Star Movies HD
  • Star World HD
  • Star Gold HD
  • Star Plus HD
  • Colors HD
  • Zee HD
  • Zee Classic HD
  • UTV Stars HD
  • TEN HD
  • CNBC Prime HD
  • Travel XP HD
  • Star Cricket HD
  • Neo Croicket HD
  • Ten Cricket HD
  • Set MAX HD
  • DD HD
  • Sun TV HD
  • KTV HD
  • Sun Music HD
  • Gemini HD
  • Telugu Service HD

Update: For standard non HD DTH comparison see: DTH Comparison and Offers.

HD War has started in India DTH segment with TataSky, Airtel, BIG TV, SunDirect and Dish TV launching their HD services. When Sun Direct has HD service, the enrty cost was whopping Rs10000/-. Now, it has come down to Rs 2600/- with TataSky being the cheapest. Only Videocon D2H is yet to start their HD service.

Decide for yourself what is the Best High Definition DTH after seeing the comparison. Here is the comparison Chart for these DTH in the following criteria:

  • DVR Recording Support
  • Universal Remote
  • HDMI Out
  • Component Video
  • Composite Audio/video
  • Optical out for 5.1 Sound
  • Coaxial Out for 5.1 Sound
  • Number of HD Channels in 16:9 aspect ratio /1080i resolution
  • No. of Up-scaled HD Channels
  • Minimum Entry Cost for New Customers
  • Minimum Entry Cost for Existing Customers
  • Monthly Cost for Channels in 16:9
  • Monthly Cost for All HD Channels
  • Customer Service

Comparison Chart( Latest and Updated)

HD Channels Comparison Chart:

Key points to note:

  • Airtel, TataSky,BIG TV has HD DTH with Recoding DVR capability.
  • You can have any base package and add HD as add-on in all DTH except Sun Direct HD. You need to have METRO pack active for HD channels
  • Tata Sky,Airtel Digital TV and Dish TV TruHD has Coaxial S/PDIF out for 5.1 Dolby audio. BIG TV and Sun Direct has Optical TOSLINK out. Make sure your Home Theater receiver has teh corresponding port when you buy the High definition DTH Set Top Box
  • Only Airtel and BIG TV offers Universal Remote.
  • Though Videcon D2H has maximum number of Asli HD Channels, it does not provide 5.1 Dolby audio like TataSky and Airtel Digital TV
  • Videocon D2H is the only DTH that has a service that shows 3D content. Though it is a repeated content and nothing specific to India
  • There is very minimal 3D content available at present and better not to make buying decisions just on 3D capability of the DTH

Also see:

What is the best High Definition Television for my HD TV

Connecting HD STB with Home Theater for 5.1 Sound




High Definition HD DTH Connecting STB to HDMI and Home Theater with Diagram

TataSky, SunDirect, Dish TV, BIG TV and Airtel Digital has already launched their HD Services. Following procedure gives details on how to connect High Definition Set Top Box (STB) to your HD TV and Home Theater.

Connecting DTH HD STB to LCD TV( HD TV):

Both the HD TV and DTH DH Set Top Box has a HDMI port. All the DTH operators include HDMI cable for carrying HD signals from STB to the HD TV. You just need to connect one end to the STB’s HDMI port and one of the HDMI port in the TV.

Switch on the STB and TV and select HDMI input from your TV remote. You should see the picture and get the sound in the TV. Normally, channels will have the sound in TV without any change in settings. But, HD channels like Discovery, National Geographic(NGC) may not have sound coming in TV. These channels have 5.1 Dolby Digital audio and this will not be decoded by the LCD TV. To get audio of these channels in TV, the STB autio option needs to be changed to stereo( from the digital). But, you will not get teh 5.1 surround in the TV. To get 5.1 effect, the STB needs to be connected to the Home Theater.

Connecting HD STB to Home Theater:

Tata Sky HD,Dish TV TruHD and Airtel Digital TV HD services have Coaxial audio output. If you are planning to buy one of the DTH, make sure your Home theater receiver has Coaxial S/PDIF input for 5.1 sound. Dish TV Tru HD, BIG TV HD and Sun HD has Optical S/DIF for 5.1 audio. In case you buy one othese, make sure your audio receiver has a Optical port.

Connection diagram:

High Definition Channels Available in Airtel DigitalTv HD DTH

Airtel Digital TV Direct to Home Service launched their HD DTH.

For the updated list  comparison of HD other DTH see: Ultimate HD DTH Comparison

Out of the handful of HD channels in India, Airtel DTH, at present  have only National Geographic Channel HD as full time channel.

  1. National Geographic HD ( NGC HD)
  2. Discovery HD World( Soon to be added)
  3. ESPN HD( Event based)
  4. Star Sports( Event based )

Event based channels telecast only during specific matches like World cup football or Wimbledon Tennis.

Other DTH Channel List: TataSky, SunDirect, Dish TV,BIG TV, Videocon D2H, Airtel Digital TV DTH

High Definition Channels available in SunDirect DTH

Sun Direct DTH is the first Direct to Home service in India to provide HD service. They had many many channels in HD. But they were reduced after the INSAT satellite outage few months ago.

For the updated list  comparison of HD other DTH see: Ultimate HD DTH Comparison

Following are the HD channels available in Sun HD:

  1. Discovery HD World
  2. National Geographic HD ( NGC HD)
  3. Tamil HD Service( some content upscaled)
  4. Sun HD( Upscaled – Should be available after they get more transponders in new satellite )
  5. Colors HD( Upscaled – Should be available after they get more transponders in new satellite )
  6. Telugu HD Service ( Upscaled – Should be available after they get more transponders in new satellite )

Other DTH Channel List: TataSky, SunDirect, Dish TV,BIG TV, Videocon D2H, Airtel Digital TV DTH

HD Channels available in BIG TV High Definition DTH

BIG TV DTH introduced HD service. It is the only High Definition DTH service to offer DVR recording capability in the HD Set Top Box. So, the entry cost bit higher than other HD DTH services. The HD DVR box cost is Rs 4990/-

For the updated list  comparison of other DTH see: Ultimate HD DTH Comparison

They have only very few HD channels to offer at present.

Following are the High Definition Channels available in BIG TV HD:

  1. National Geographic HD
  2. Star Plus HD

they are expected to add Discovery HD and other channels soon.

Other DTH Channel List: TataSky, SunDirect, Dish TV,BIG TV, Videocon D2H, Airtel Digital TV DTH