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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
When viewing the component HD "Input #5" of my 4:3 TV (Sony KV-32XBR400) I have no option to eliminate the top+bottom black bars on my screen. This is fine for 16:9 programming, BUT for 4:3 programming I want the picture to fill the screen (instead of black bars on ALL FOUR sides, resulting in a much smaller picture for NO reason).


On component "Input #6" for DVD's, the TV DOES allow me to fill the screen when viewing 4:3 material (no black bars).


Can I switch these two inputs? (By sending the DVD to my TV's HD input and sending the DTC-100 to the TV's DVD input?) I would then be forced to view DVD's in 16:9 ratio, which I want to do anyway. I would then be able to watch all DirecTV and OTA programming through the DVD input in any aspect ratio I want, and the 4:3 material would be able to fill the screen instead of black bars on all four sides. I assume I would lose the ability to watch any programming in 1080i (the TV has no 720p capabilities, so I wouldnt be losing that anyway). Would 1080i material then be 480p?


I know everyone will think this is dumb, but most of the programming that I watch is not available in high definition, so it is more important to me to be able to display a full screen 4:3 picture in the best quality possible than it is to see the limited 1080i programming. My hope is that with the "HD monitor" button on my DTC-100 (actually, ProScan PSHD-105) turned on, and viewed in full size on my TV through the component connections, that the picture from non-HDTV sources will be as good as what I see from non-HDTV sources with the "HD monitor" button turned on when the picture doesnt fill the screen (which is an amazingly good picture).


Is what I have written understandable? (If not, I can clarify.) Maybe this only makes sence to those with an XBR400 TV who have seen what I am talking about. If you understand what I am talking about, do you think it would work? Could it be harmful to any of my equipment?


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Rick W. Scogland


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I doubt this will work. Aspect ratio control is usually dependent on the scan rate of the signal, not the particular input you use. Whatever input the 1080i source is connected to will not have aspect ratio control. You have on the DVD input because that's only a 480i signal (or 480p if your DVD player is progressive).


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Vic Ruiz
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I also have a 32XBR400. As far as I can tell inputs 5 and 6 are identical. The documentation shows no difference between them. Unfortunately I also have 5 for DVD and 6 for HD so I cannot tell how the opposite would behave. I suspect that it depends on the source material, as mentioned in a previous post, and not the input you are using.


Adi
 

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You guys has just discoved the little dirty problems with so called 4x3 HDTV sets. You see True HD is broadcast in 16x9 aspect ratio.


So whenever the HD signal has 4x3 material in it you will see back bars on the sides of a 16x9 aspect HD set. With this same signal is displayed ona 4.3 ratio set you will see black bars all around. You could downriz and correctly display it on you 4x3 set. But it would no longer be HD.


Best thing to do with 4X3 HD set take them back and get a true 16x9 HD set.


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Bruce.in.Cary
 

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Rick:


I'm curious - are you referring to 4:3 material that's upconverted by the station and that you receive as a DTV signal on the DTC-100? If so, there's no way to keep the Sony XBR400 from "auto-squeezing" the picture, and you're stuck with "window-boxing".


If you're referring to 4:3 material received over satellite, I might have a solution for you. Since you're using input #5, then I assume you have either the RCA or AudioAuthority RGB to Component transcoder. If so, that's the reason the Sony window-boxes everything, including "regular" channels such as ESPN, etc..., since the DTC-100 scales everything (except true 1080i) to 540p. The Sony interprets 540p as 1080i, and letterboxes the result.


Therefore, to prevent this, you'll need to hook up the s-video from the DTC-100 to the TV, and switch inputs on the TV and switch outputs on the DTC-100 to toggle the RGB output off and the s-video output on. This is clumsy to do with the RCA and Sony remotes, so I have a button programmed on my Pronto to do it all with one push.


Some of the newer STBs will output video simultaneously on both the s-video and component HD outputs, so these would be a little easier, but you can make the Sony and DTC-100 work for all but DTV 4:3 material.


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And in response to Bruces post, if you have a 16x9 screen watching SD 4x3 (or DTV 4x3) and the image is 16x9 then you get bars on all sides also! (zoom zoom)

John
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I cant really tell if Bruce is understanding what I am saying or not. I am not even talking about HD signals (as dkeller points out). I am fine with all the HD signals I receive ... none of which are 4:3, and I'm fine with the letterbox in those cases. The last thing I want to do is get a "true" HD set to accomodate the "true" lack of HD programming.


dkeller - I have tried what you said, but the picture is pretty much the same as how I see it on video-1. (And I am using the RCA transcoder with video-5).


I was actually referring to "un-dual-letterboxing" two types of pictures in Video-5: 1.) standard definition DirecTV programming (ie: ESPN, MTV, networks, Discovery, etc), and 2.) non-HDTV digital OTA stations broadcast in 4:3 format. #1 is way more important to me.


I guess since nobody said it would be harmful, I should probably just experiment and post my results here, while expecting it not to work in the meantime.


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Rick W. Scogland


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Uh - somethings seriously not right here if you can't get 4:3 SD directv to fill the screen from the RCA DTC-100 with s-video. How do you have the monitor set-up boxes checked in the RCA's menu? It sounds like you might have it set for a 16:9 tv. If so, perhaps the RCA is letterboxing the SD directv transmissions? That would be wierd - I'll have to check out my unit on the projector tonight. Since a projector is aspect-ratio independent, it will let me see what type of output the RCA is putting out on all of it's modes.


There's nothing you can do about the 4:3 DTV OTA upconverts, but SD directv should be easy.


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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I have no problem filling the screen with 4:3 material using S-video ... it is the component video input I want to fill the screen with. On my TV, I have 2 component video inputs:


Video-5 = component for HDTV

Video-6 = component for DVD


Video-5 does not allow aspect ratio control ... it is always letterboxed 16:9 format. Video-6 allows me to choose between 16:9 or 4:3 formats. I want to reverse the two component inputs to gain control of aspect ratio when viewing non-HDTV thru component input.


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Rick W. Scogland


My Email Address:
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My Home Theater:
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Just thought I would add to the confusion. The DVD at 480P has a diferent horizontal scan frequency than the 1080I. My Toshiba alows the scaling of the 480P but not the 1080I. The 1080I is supposed to be 16/9 and should need no scaling but when you are shown an upconverted 480I picture it should have side bars and in your case top and bottom bars also. You shouldn't hurt the tv by feeding it a horizontal frequency that won't work. but as I said it won't work----prove me wrong.


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milt
 

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I have an XBR450 (equivalent to your 400). What dkeller_NC said will be true, the XBR will letterbox (actually squeeze) any 1080i signal. So, even if it is okay to switch what is connected to 5 and 6, you will end up switching the problem from input 5 to input 6. Your problem is not due to the input, it is due to the output signal of the STB (which I don't think you can change).


For example, my STB only outputs 1080i through component. So, I cannot watch 4:3 1080i material through the component input without it being squeezed on my XBR (which is what you're saying, if I understand). Switching the input would still result in the same thing. So, I would not bother doing this if I were you. I don't think it will hurt anything (check the manual?), but I'm almost certain it will not solve your problem.


The only way I know of that people get 4:3 through component in the XBR from a STB is when the STB outputs a 480i or 480p signal (just as your DVD player does). The 540p or 1080i is always squeezed by the XBR. I have tried to see if there is a service menu item that would unsqueeze the 1080i, but I haven't found this ability. If anyone knows how to do this, I would be very interested. I suspect it is not possible.



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Rick:


Jason has explained this a little better than I have, I think, and he's correct. On the XBR400 (I have the 36" version, BTW), 1080i or 540p sources are always squeezed, whether or not they are on input 5 or 6 - that's why I suggested that you use the s-video connection for your 4:3 DirecTV sources.


However, I'm confused by a seeming inconsistency in your posts. You stated earlier that "dkeller - I have tried what you said, but the picture is pretty much the same as how I see it on video-1. (And I am using the RCA transcoder with video-5).", but later said "I have no problem filling the screen with 4:3 material using S-video ... it is the component video input I want to fill the screen with."


For what it's worth, "normal" DirecTV doesn't benefit from using the component outputs of the DTC-100 all that much, IMO. The scaler in the TV set is pretty decent, and the RCA's internal scaler (which would be in use if you were using the component output) is less than perfect. Guess it's matter of opinion, but as far as picture quality is concerned, I don't see that much improvement. OTA DTV is another story, however, but I'm not willing to give up that much screen real estate for the improvement on 4:3 sources.


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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Regarding this confusion:

"However, I'm confused by a seeming inconsistency in your posts. You stated earlier that "dkeller - I have tried what you said, but the picture is pretty much the same as how I see it on video-1. (And I am using the RCA transcoder with video-5).", but later said "I have no problem filling the screen with 4:3 material using S-video ... it is the component video input I want to fill the screen with."


My Reply:

I understand every aspect of using Video-1 thru Video-4 on the TV. I understand every aspect of using coaxial, composite, and S-video. I understand every aspect of all audio connections. My ONLY concern is when using COMPONENT connections, which are Video-5 and Video-6 inputs. Above, when I wrote "And I am using the RCA transcoder with video-5" I only meant that as a reply to when I was asked which RGB-to-component transcoder I used ... but I now see that I added to the confusion by including that statement in the same paragraph.


Remember ... In my original post, the only thing that I had only hoped to gain by switching inputs 5 and 6 would be full-screen component non-HDTV DirecTV in 4:3 and 480i/480p picture on Video-6 (and no change with DVD playback on Video-5).


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Rick W. Scogland


My Email Address:
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My Home Theater:
The Scogland Home Theater


[This message has been edited by RScogland (edited 08-24-2001).]
 

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Rick:


I'm at work at the moment and can't look on the back of my set, but I seem to remember that inputs 5&6 are component inputs, not composite. Anyway, so far as I know, you can't get any 4:3 material to correctly display on the Sony if it's scaled by the DTC-100, i.e. - through the RGB to component transcoder.


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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
dkeller - you are exactly right ... no need to check. I will forever confuse the words "component" and "composite" with each other ... why must they both start with the same letter? I edited my post, and it should now read correctly.


You wrote: "you can't get any 4:3 material to correctly display on the Sony if it's scaled by the DTC-100, i.e. - through the RGB to component transcoder"


My post was weather or not this is true for ONLY Video-5, or if it is ALSO true for Video-6.


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Rick W. Scogland


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Again, it doesn't matter if it's video 5 or 6. The only thing that matters is what signal is going to those inputs. If it's a 1080i/540p signal you won't have aspect ratio control. It doesn't matter if the program you're watching is not in HD. If the signal is from the VGA port, it will always be 1080i/540p.


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Vic Ruiz
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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Maybe this will show my lack of knowledge, but I think the signal I am talking about is 480i or 480p (or, maybe even 960i) ... how do those compare to 540p and 1080i ... any different? (Actually, after re-reading the last sentence on vruiz's post, it looks like I am being told that the DTC-100 doesnt send anything as 480i/480p/960i).


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Rick W. Scogland


My Email Address:
[email protected]


My Home Theater:
The Scogland Home Theater


[This message has been edited by RScogland (edited 08-24-2001).]
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by vruiz:
The only STB that allows AR control on 1080i/720p signals is the Dish Network 6000.
Just to clarify, the Sony XBR400 will not display anything other than a 16:9 squeezed imaged from a 1080i signal (and I don't think it will display a 720p signal at all?). If the STB has AR control, then this will still take place within the 16:9 squeezed image. For example, if I watch my local newscast (SD) on their digital transmission via component outputs (1080i), I get a 4:3 image within my 16:9 image on my 4:3 screen. In other words, I get a 4:3 image that is about 25" diagonally centered in my 36" diagonal screen, with black "bars" all around.


I just don't want Vic's comment about a STB that gives aspect ratio control at 1080i or 720p to be interpretted by anyone to think that this will result in a filled 4:3 screen on the XBR (not that I think this is what Vic was saying).




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-Jason
 

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Its just bad that the sellpeople did not infrom of this limintation with 1080i signals on your Sony set when you brought it.


I told you it was a dirty little secreat.




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Bruce.in.Cary
 
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