Video Standards - A Short Overview
Without doubt, analog transmission using NTSC , PAL , or SECAM technology carries a high penalty with respect to image quality losses as the latter requires several intermediate analog stages. NTSC is the transmission standard for the Northern America, Europe has PAL and SECAM. In addition to that, video recorders that use VHS or S-VHS cassettes for analog video recording are widespread.
In remains inevitable that during the transition phase from analog to digital, both standards exist side-by-side. However, analog devices can only be connected to digital models via a corresponding interface and a converter stage. For example, a set top box can receive digital television but this signal has to be converted again for analog televisions that are in widespread use. However, the connectors that exist for this task (SCART, S-VHS or Composite/Cinch) only incur minimal losses.
In the field of non-linear video editing, the MJPEG format has established itself as a pseudo standard. The space-saving MPEG-1 format that has been on the market for a long time has established itself in the home user sector. All the films on somewhat outdated video CDs (e.g. at Karaoke bars) are stored in MPEG-1 compressed format. The most important digital interface is the IEEE 1394 , also known as 'Fire Wire '. Most digital video cameras have such an interface and there is a growing number of PC peripherals that incorporate a FireWire interface.
MPEG-2 has been constantly gaining in importance since the appearance of DVD. For example, broadcasting studios and companies that manufacture DVDs (DVD authoring) work with video data in this format. Set top boxes also receive their signals in digital MPEG-2 compressed format.
Summary: the future of digital video belongs to IEEE 1394 and MPEG-2.