ATSC, or Advanced Television Systems Committee, is an international organization mainly concerned with transmission technologies. ATSC defines the standards for digital television technologies and transmission in the United States and in other countries such as Canada, Mexico, and South Korea.
ATSC aims to replace NTSC (National Television Systems Committee), an earlier analog standard. The ATSC standards are created by a group consisting of associations in the electronic industry, electrical engineers, an association of broadcasters, and organizations in the fields of cable TV and motion picture.
ATSC has standards for enhanced video and audio features. These standards include High Definition TV (HDTV), an advanced technology with a higher image aspect ratio than most types of TVs. ATSC standards also include the Standard Definition Television (SDTV). Satellite direct-to-home is another technology included in ATSC standards.
Apart from digital video transmission, high-quality audio has also been incorporated in ATSC standards. Devices providing multi-channel surround-sound audio support these standards.
A number of specific technologies are used by ATSC standards. These technologies contribute to the enhancement of video and audio features of the aforementioned devices. ATSC makes use of 8-level Vestigial Side-Band or 8VSB modulation. This type of modulation has gained recognition for its advanced power saving features. Another technology used by ATSC is MPEG-2 compression. MPEG-2 compression enables broadcasters to give video streams with higher resolutions and audio streams with better sound quality. ATSC uses AC3 encoding, a technology used by numerous systems and networks for audio output.