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Video and TV norms in Paris: a few tips to help you avoid any unpleasant surprises...

Video and TV norms in Paris: a few tips to help you avoid any unpleasant surprises...

 

There are three main television/video standards in use throughout the world. 

  •  The system used in the US, Canada, Japan and some other countries is called NTSC.
  •  Most of Western Europe, Australasia and Southern Africa use a system called PAL.
  • Eastern Europe and  France uses SECAM.
France tv video standards

 

SECAM and PAL have enough similarities to make them both compatible with the majority of video equipment available in Europe. However, SECAM and NTSC are not compatible.

 

Do check that any video equipment or cassettes that you purchase in Paris will be compatible with the system used in your country...more if you come from the USA.

 

 

PAL's importance increases in France

 

While France has historically used the SECAM standard, its importance is waning as digital TV (whether terrestrial, satellite or cable) takes over from the traditional analogue broadcasting methods. All French satellite decoders, cable set-top boxes and DVB decoders for terrestrial digital TV (known as TNT in France) produce a PAL signal, as do all DVD players. SECAM is still used for French analogue terrestrial television and for French VHS cassettes, but the importance of these is on the wane as more and more people choose the view even the traditional French TV channels via a digital medium, and DVD replaces VHS.

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