The good ole days of analog signaling were wonderful back then but not as good as today’s advanced analog and surely not as good as digital transmissions. Today’s technological advances in entertainment and communications programming provide quality imaging and the best in sound quality. Analog transmissions are still used in radio signaling and in many televisions, but U.S. Federal government mandates are planning to require a total changeover in television signaling from analog to digital technology in 2007. Advantages of digital over analog are in the advanced quality of audio clarity and video imaging. The signals are not any greater or higher; they are just much improved by eliminating all noise and interferences from transmissions. Professional analog transmission systems are of a very high quality and with signals being transmitted directly to carrier waves and then on to home and business receivers via cable, satellite, or air. During this type of transmission, the signals being modulated sometimes loose power or amplitude and some noise interference is much more likely to be included in the modulated signaling. The result analog receivers get is a lower quality reproduction of imaging and sound than the original sent by the transmitter.
Digital transmission systems are an entirely different audio and visual experience for viewers and listeners. Digital signals are transmitted to television and radio receivers with no audible or visual loss of quality. It is as if an exact duplicate is transmitted from the source to the receiver; however, this is not entirely how it is done. They do lose some quality because digital signaling still requires transmission by analog but, and this is a big but, digital systems do not record the analog signals – digital encodes the signaling into bits with a bit being the size and speed of the sample being transmitted. The digital system transmits the bits by modulating carrier waves. Digital receivers are technologically designed to receive the signal, no matter what the quality is, and decode the encoding providing excellent crystal-clear imaging and CD quality audio. Realizing that this is a very complicated technology and detailed subject, it is good to know that digital is better simply because it eliminates noise completely, and although you will be seeing and listening to a copy, it will appear and sound the same as if you were listening and seeing the original.
Of course, the quality of what you view and listen to depends to a large extent on the type of entertainment system you use, but all negative effects of analog will be eliminated in digital transmissions. Satellite television service providers use digital and standard signaling transmissions exclusively with much improved quality in visual and audio technology and little to no interference in programming. So with changing times in research and development of technology come improvements and advancements that still depend somewhat on the older methods.