Season 4 of Battlestar Galatica will be the last

Battle Star GalaticaWe normally leave this type of news to TVSquad, but we know this is a big favorite of HD fans everywhere. Like so many of our favorite shows, they can’t go on forever — at least not without jumping the shark — and just like Lost, the producers have decided when the story will end. While we haven’t forgave Sci-Fi for making us wait so long to enjoy the HD version of the show, we do respect the producers decision to end the show when they were done telling their story. So, in November the fourth and final season of 22 episodes will begin with a two hour season premier on Sci-Fi, and as usual we will probably have to wait another 6 months to enjoy it in HD on Universal HD.

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All three Lord of the Rings films airing in HD on TNT

Our friends at TV Squad let us know that TNT will be airing all three Lord of the Rings movies December 15th. This will be the network television debut of the third film in the series, The Return of the King. Unfortunately what we’re not sure about is whether the HD channel will be airing original aspect ratio 1080i beauty or stretched widescreen upconverts. As the films have yet to make their debut on HD DVD or Blu-ray we’re keeping our fingers crossed but given TNT’s history with stretching content we can’t assume anything. The films will also be available for HDTVs via VOD, but that’s no assurance as when the Star Wars trilogy aired on Cinemax it was OAR, but cropped on video on-demand, so they may be different. We appeal to our readers, does anyone know if the previous Lord of the Rings films shown on TNT were native or upconverted, and if there’s any way to tell which these will be? Our plans for next Friday are riding on it (like we have plans).

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Star Wars HD marathon going on right about… NOW!

Cinemax is bringing home all six Star Wars movies in high definition back-to-back-to-back-to-back-to-back-to-back, starting at midnight tonight. If you miss one don’t worry, they will be repeating and also are available in many areas in HD on video-on-demand. Otherwise, this is the first time to catch all three original flicks formatted for your HDTV, if you’d like to avoid Jar-Jar Binks in 1080i, take a nap and catch Episode IV: A New Hope at 7:10 AM on Saturday.

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DirecTV launches ninth satellite… for standard-def channels

DirecTV logoDirecTV recently launched their ninth satellite, the DIRECTV 9S, with a flawless liftoff from the spaceport in Kouou, French Guinea. Controllers successfully tested the operation of the new high-powered spot-beam satellite, which will provide backup services and local standard-definition local channels throughout the US coverage area — wait a minute, standard def? Where’s the national high-def customers have been waiting on? Let me rescan the news release for more info: okay, four satellites have been launched in the past two years, lots of local channels offered now, details about how the bird was launched and such, ah here it is; DIRECTV10 and DIRECTV11 will be launched in 2007 to offer that long-awaited HD national coverage. Meanwhile, Echostar’s Dish Network offers over 30 HD channels right now. While few can doubt the mighty wisdom and weight behind DirecTV and their decision to launch a backup SD sat, its customers only have to wait a mere 14 months maximum (assuming no launch delays or other technical problems) to get more high-definition channels. Here’s to you, DTV subscribers! May your wait be short!

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Comcast updates digital set-top boxes

A few users are reporting that Comcast sent across an unannounced update to their digital set-top boxes. We can’t confirm exactly where or what boxes are affect just yet but we can tell you for certain that the greater Detroit area boxes received the update. So far we have found that high-def programs are now labeled as such, the DVR menu has been updated to include searches and now the main menu has an HD option. There could be more updates buried but being as Comcast hasn’t came out and told us what they are, these are the only things we could find.

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