HDTV Is Here! So What?

The sets have supersharp pictures, terrific sound--and huge price tags. Here's what you need to know

Who would have believed it? After what seems like an eternity of tantalizing hype about "high-definition" television, the first digital sets are actually on their way from Sony, RCA, Panasonic and about 10 other manufacturers to showroom floors--and the first digital broadcasts will begin in a little over a month. This much anticipated debut would seem to be terrific news for tube lovers. As promised, the sets deliver supersharp digital pictures, wide-format movie-style screens and magnificent stereo surround sound. And thanks to the content-neutral nature of digital signals--"Bits are bits," they like to say in TV circles these days--you could wind...

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