Difference Between 1080p and 1080i (With Table)

In the contemporary world, television plays a vital role in everyone’s life. It is one of the sources through which we are connected to the rest of the world. When you go TV shopping in the market, several kinds of terminology are kept in front of you. They range from HDR to Dolby and OLED, QLED, etc.  

Later 1080p and 1080i are options provided in front of you. they are nothing but picture display and resolution who are different in many terms. The quality of 1080p is much better than 1080i. But 1080i is not typically seen in sales copy. 

1080p vs 1080i 

The main difference between 1080p and 1080i is that they both display images in a different ways. 1080p uses the display mode of progressive scan whereas, 1080i use interlaced scan. In terms of refreshing rate, 1080p refreshes together all the lines whereas 1080i refreshes only half lines at a time. 1080p picture quality is desirable as compared to 1080i.  

1080p is well known as FHD (Full High Definition) or Full HD. It is a usual display that uses the resolution of pixels (1920 x 1080). 1080p signals in the United States are assisted by ATSC standards and in Europe with the support of DVCB standards. It was and still works as a standard for appliances such as mobile devices display, Blu-ray content, and televisions. 

1080i is a combination of scan type and frame resolution. It is mainly used in HDTV (High-Definition Television) and high-definition video. Charles Poynton originated the choice of 1080 lines and later goes for “square pixels” which are used in HD video. The widescreen aspect ratio is 16:9 or it can be said that the TV with a rectangular shape that is wider enough that it is tall. 

Comparison Table Between 1080p and 1080i 

Parameters of Comparison1080p1080i
Display technologyProgressiveInterlaced
DealsWith framesWith fields
UsageIn-game consoles, Blu-ray discsIn terrestrial TV
WorksWith field rate (field/sec)With frame rate (frame/sec)
Fluid natureDoes not haveDue to the progression of fields, it has fluid nature

What is 1080p? 

In 1080p, “p” stands for progressive. 1080p is referred to as the quality video resolution which is used in TV and video projectors. This image is displayed in form of progressively because pixel rows on the screen are displayed in a sequence form. 1080p has 1,920 pixels which are arrayed horizontally whereas vertically, 1,080 pixels are arrayed.  

Gadgets such as PC monitors, TV’s and gaming laptops use the resolution of 1080p nowadays. 1080P is the lowest resolution which is acceptable in the market due to its modern computing or gaming experience. In competition 1440p or 4K in gaming provide a realistic experience at higher resolution. But gaming at 1080p is also famous among mainstream gamers.  

1080p standard is used in applications such as Blu-ray discs, video game consoles, projectors, smartphones, broadcasts, and Internet content (Netflix, YouTube videos). Images that are moving can be captured by digital cameras, small camcorders, and smartphones. 1080p and FHD/full HD, both are interchangeable technology but they are similar.  

1080p does not only display a picture with the help of old and even lines, even it shows images just like a movie or can be seen at once. Digital pictures are clearer and sharper than analog ones. But its refresh rate is not applied for display, only resolution is described in 1080p. These details are cleared by broadcasters or video encoders who generate the resolution image of 1080p. 

What is 1080i? 

In 1080i, “i’ stands for interlaced. It is well known as BT.709 or full HD. The number 1080 is directly linked to the number of horizontal lines which are displayed on the screen. 1080i is referred to as the video resolution which is majorly used in HD cable as well as satellite TV programs. In these only odd lines are alternately drawn which means that the video uses actual image frames only in the half number.  

1080i displays images twice due to its interlaced display. This display was used in old televisions that use cathode ray tubes. It has the motive to improve the contrast of TVs with the help of low scan rates and double the number of images per second. When the screen of old CRTs is scanned by electron it causes a delay between the last pixel (bottom of the screen) and the first pixel (top of the screen).  

1080i uses the method to produce a counteracting effect. This screen is refreshed slowly from top to bottom. As a result, half the top of the screen is displaying a different image as compared to the bottom (older cathode ray). In older screens, there is a difference between the top and bottom of the screen. In which the top becomes dull and less illuminating as compared to the bottom of the screen.  

Nowadays, the scan rate of 50Hz is not anymore used in television, that’s why this format is not relevant and not used on modern televisions. But for DTTV this interlaced format is still used because it requires only half the bandwidth and internet connection with less demand. Although the size (full) of the program is the same the image is broadcasted only half. 

Main Differences Between 1080p and 1080i 

  1. When it comes to frequency for TV, 1080p provides 25 frames per second in PAL countries, and for NTSC countries have 30/1.001 frames per second. While 1080i provides 50 fields per second to PAL countries and in NTSC countries it provides 60/1.001 fields per second.
  2. 1080p offers an image that is superior in quality and prevents the screen from tearing. That’s why 1080p is preferred for fast-moving images, as screen tearing tends to occur on 1080i. 
  3. In 1080p, pixels of every row are scanned progressively, and even the row on the screen is refreshed 60 times per second. Whereas in 1080i, the image is displayed in an alternating fashion with 30 times field flashes per second. 
  4. In terms of vertical resolution, 1080p displays the vertical resolution of pixels as 1080.  But 1080i display only 540 as their actual lines in a vertical resolution which is only half of 1080p. 
  5. 1080p is preferred when there is a requirement of slow motion and separate stills. On the flip side, 1080i is suggested for proper slow-motion realization and clear stills. 

Conclusion 

So, it can be concluded that 1080p and 1080i are display technology which differs in many terms. In which 1080p uses progressively display technology where are 1080I uses interlaced. In 1080i screen tearing is common and that’s why it is preferred for proper slow motion but this problem does not appear in 1080P.   

Nowadays, 1080P or FHD, or full HD is popular in the market due to its display quality. 1080i is not available in sales copy but they are available on the TV and depend on the type of content is broadcasting. 1080i was used in older CRTs TV which uses cathode ray tube. At last, it can be said that 1080p is much popular than 1080i as 1080i is replaced by 1080p. Because improvement in technology is an unstoppable process and 1080p can also be replaced in the upcoming time. 

References 

  1. https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/abstract/document/4585969/
  2. https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/journal-of-laryngology-and-otology/article/full-digital-high-definition-video-system-1080i-for-laryngoscopy-and-stroboscopy/B9A5B2FAE3D26DA49C93D8B8D415E983
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