Just wanted to open up a topic for discussion on this “New HD Radio” I keep hearing advertised on the radio all day everyday. Seems to me this is just a big play on words using the High Definition gold rush going on in the television side of electronics market to sell a gimmick in radio.

High Definition or the new trade mark HDTV has to do with the resolution of a TV set. Now that we have 720p, 1080I, 1080P. All have to do with the amount of lines embedded within the signal and the letter describes the type of scan the television uses to display the picture. All pretty boring unless you’re into that sort of thing.

Anyway now where does HD radio fit into the number of lines you see on your TV screen? They would be better served to use one of the digital surround sound formats. Such as Dolby Digital-(AC3), DTS, and now THX-EX I’ll spare everyone the gory details of the THX debate I am still trying to figure that one out. But why not call their new signal DD Radio or THX Select Radio? Other than having to pay some sort of royalty so instead they have the uninformed masses running out to buy an HD Radio.

In truth from what I have been able to read about Hybrid Digital HD Radio does sound promising somewhat anyway. I can’t tell that much difference in an mp3 burned at 96kbit/s vs. one burned at 128. And with all the extras one would be forced to purchase to actually receive and listen to HD Radio I have to wonder is it really worth it?

What do you think anyone out there that has and uses HD radio? Is it that much of a difference in sound quality? What about XM does it sound close to or better than Sat radio?