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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Do any of the front end programs allow for 16:9 screens? I have an X1 projector and a 16:9 ratio screen. The X1 needs to be fed an 800x600 or 1024x768 signal. But doing this will cause the windows desktop to spill over the top and bottom of my screen.


Are front end programs flexible enough that you can put your buttons and menus in the middle of the screen area, and change the spilled-over area to a black color so it isn't noticable? I'm really wanting to go the HTPC route but I also love my 16:9 highpower screen...


thanks


PS: What's a good free front end program I could play with?
 

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I would wholeheartedly recommend: www.myhtpc.net. Although, still in alpha stage it works great for my setup (as it may yours as well). Also don't forget to visit the forums on the website for answers to your questions.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Shelbrain - indeed it looks like you can use any background you like with myhtpc. I modified one of the supplied background JPG files into an 800x450 image that fits my screen perfectly.


Very cool software. I can't believe that either this or Zoomplayer are available for free. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Just an update on my previous post. I found the best solution is to pad the 800x450 background image with 75 black pixels on the top & bottom. The black area is for the area projected beyond my 16:9 screen. The other thing that had to be done was setting "Title Safe Area" to 11%, which keeps all text, menus, and other content confined to within the borders of my screen.


So I'm feeding my X1 a standard 800x600 resolution, which is the native res of this projector (pixel-to-pixel mapping), but thanks to myhtpc, I've got everything confined to an 800x450 area, thus fitting my 16:9 screen.


I'm very pleased with this result. I just wish myHTPC had a web browser. :)
 

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wow Shelbrain, thanks for posting that link! I'm amazing by that front end, didnt think anyone made anything along those lines cept Microsoft (media center xp) thanks again!
 

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Hi MBaxter,


I am interested in building an HTPC to use with an X1, but I am curious about one thing.


The specs say that the X1 is 800x600 native but will display 1024x768.


I want to use an X1 for both home theatre and with my laptop to do plain old computer demonstrations/training at 1024x768.


Will the X1 display MS Windows applications at 1024x768 or does it look less than optimal since it is only 800x600 native?


Thanks,

Issaquah
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by mbaxter

Just an update on my previous post. I found the best solution is to pad the 800x450 background image with 75 black pixels on the top & bottom. The black area is for the area projected beyond my 16:9 screen.

I am curious to know why this is necessary if you have pixel perfect mapping? Is your screen not 16:9 aspect ratio?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Quote:
Originally posted by Issaquah
Will the X1 display MS Windows applications at 1024x768 or does it look less than optimal since it is only 800x600 native?
Yes you can feed the X1 with 1024x768 no problem, but it has to compress the image to fit its 800x600 panel. This compression is not noticable for pictures and DVD's but with text and graphs you can clearly make out that its distorted.

Quote:
Originally posted by mikef
I am curious to know why this is necessary if you have pixel perfect mapping? Is your screen not 16:9 aspect ratio?
Yes, my screen is 16:9 aspect ratio but the X1 is native 4:3. So to get around this problem, I run my computer at the X1's native resolution (800x600) but use myHTPC to ensure that all content stays within a vertically centered 800x450 area, thus fitting my 16:9 screen.


The X1 projects an image that looks like this:

http://pages.sbcglobal.net/mbaxter/myhtpc.jpg


The middle part fits my 16:9 screen, the black bars top and bottom are projected onto my black masking borders.


This is the best workaround that I know of for HTPC users with 4:3 projectors and 16:9 screens.
 

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WOuld someone like to share their setup files?? For example, when you launch WinDVD - how do you get full screen AND control of the WinDVD program? Are you using GIrder when you switch to the DVD player?

When you exit how are you getting back to the front end etc?
 

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my setup?


myHTPC is a wonderful thing! This forum helped very much last night as I was able to add new menu options, backgrounds, commands etc. I was really struggling to navigate with weird buttons and icons but now I can launch:


* FlyVideo for TV (can't get it to go full screen though, for any of the apps, any ideas?)

* PowerDVD for DVD

* ZoomPlayer for playlists of ripped DVD scenes, avi's etc.


By default, myHTPC is great for organising photos, slideshows, music etc. I can control the whole thing via Pronto remote (you can navigate with the directional buttons from the PowerDVD panel). No girder required as I have an Airboard (IR remote keyboard).


I'm wrapped! Even impressed the wife (I know, amazing!)


Cheers,


Roscoe
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Quote:
Originally posted by mikef
Makes sense... I originally thought the X1 had a native 16:9 mode (similar to the Plus Piano).
It does. You can set the HTPC to 800x600 or 1024x768, and set the X1 to 16:9 mode, and it will crush the image to fit. But there's two problems with doing that. First of all, everything's out of proportion now. But that's not a big deal for web browsing, listening to music, etc. However it does become a problem when you switch to TV Tuner or DVD playback. Now you've got to switch the projector back to 4:3 mode again. Then when you switch back to the myhtpc main menu, you need to hit the projector aspect ratio button again, to get everything squeezed back onto the screen. Too much hassle, too complicated for wife and guests.


Now I've got everything much more simplified. All content, be it DVD, music, TV, or whatever, now goes down the same audio and video pipe, and no one ever has to switch projector aspect ratio, projector input, or audio receiver settings. My wife is thrilled with this new setup. And will get better as I implement a one-handed remote control solution. Right now I'm still using a wireless keyboard w/integrated trackball as my "remote".
 
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