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Glossary of Home Theater Terminology

Glossary of Audio, Video and Home Theater Terms

There is a very large vocabulary of technical and descriptive terms that go with home theater. We've included the terms that you are most likely to encounter. If you are very technically involved you may find some of the more technical terms omitted from our list.

Click on a letter to jump to that section of our glossary.
# - A - B - C - D - E - F - G - H - I - J - K - L - M
N - O - P - Q - R - S - T - U - V - W - X - Y - Z

UHF - Ultra High Frequency. Radio waves that carry the higher numbered television channels. VHF carries the lowered number channels.

Underscan - When the television picture is not adjusted to fill the entire screen resulting in black bars around the image. This is not the same as a pillerbox which results from the source material not filling the screen. See overscan.

Universal Remote Control - A remote control that is able to control several different audio and video components. The manufacturer provides a list of codes that the user must program into the remote for their own specific brands and models of equipment. See learning remote.

Upconversion - When the source material is changed to from a lower resolution to a higher one. The signal is upconverted to have more pixels or scan lines.

UPS - Uninterruptible Power Supply. A battery backup power source, commonly used with PCs. However, because some AV components require internal cooling fans after shut down, a UPS will prevent overheating in the event of a power outage. Most UPSs also have power filtering and surge protection circuits.

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