Work Abroad but earn in USD

Saturday, March 12, 2005

Video Systems Overseas (NTSC vs PAL)

If you're thinking about bringing any video devices to Argentina, such as a DVD player, a camcorder, or a home theater projector, you'll run into a problem pretty quick. Argentina's video system is PAL N, which is different than NTSC, the system in the United States. PAL N is also different from PAL, the system used widely throughout Europe. You have to match PAL devices with PAL devices and NTSC devices with NTSC devices. You can't take an NTSC camcorder and plug it into a PAL TV. It won't work.

A Solution Exists

Luckily, there are PAL/NTSC video converters out there that will change the signals from one format to the other. This will let you bring your devices with you to Argentina and ensure they will work on an Argentina television. Otherwise, you're going to be forced to leave all your stuff at home and buy everything new once you arrive in Argentina.

A Special Note About Home Video

If you buy a camcorder in Argentina there will be problems with all the video you shoot if you attempt to view it back in the United States. On the other hand, if you keep your US camcorder, you won't be able to play the video on an Argentina TV without the PAL/NTSC converter. If you don't plan on relocating to Argentina permanently, it would probably make sense to keep recording your video in NTSC for the long term.

As someone who enjoys photography/videography, this was an important issue for me. My family wants to see photos/video of my new home, so I decided to do all my video in NTSC. I will use a converter to view it here.

The Professional Option

If you are building a home theater and you plan on having a lot of different video sources (i.e. DVD player, satellite, camcorder, video game system) and you want to pair these with a high-end video device like a plasma television or a projector, you might want to invest in a video processor. These devices are literally mini-computers. They take any video singal, whether it be from a PAL, NTSC, PAL N, computer, etc, and they convert it to EXACTLY FIT your video device. An example of one of these devices would be the iScan HD+ from DVDO.

The iScan product from DVDO is one way to ensure that no matter what display you end up using, it will work with whatever source you feed it. If you plan on moving around the world a lot, this would be a good long-term investment if you want great video no matter where in the world you happen to be living.



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