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It is interesting (and frustrating) to see that while ESPN HD's picture pretty much fills up my screen, the local (Louisville, KY) HD channels (WHAS, WLKY, etc) show up in only a portion of the screen. I use a Hitachi 43" 16:9 Widescreen (43FWX20B).


What can I do to increase the size of the picture on the local HD channels?


Thanks.
 

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Are you sure that the local channels are really broadcasting 16:9 content and not 4:3? Remember, just because your locals are broadcasting in Digital doesn't mean they are HD. If you want to fill the screen, your TV probably has a format button to change the screen size. Some thing like Stretch, etc. This will make 4:3 images look short and fat.
 

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What you are describing is (most likely) related to the following:


Your HD locals are not broadcasting true 16:9 HD content most of the time. Most of their content is still 4:3 SD. When they broadcast 4:3 SD material on their 'HD' channel ... they typically add bars to the side of the 4:3 program and upconvert it to 16:9 HD. Your TV probably can't stretch/zoom or otherwise manipulate HD (1080i or 720p) sources ... so you're stuck with a 4:3 image with bars on the side.


Note, the same holds true for ESPN-HD ... it's just that they choose to stretch the image themselves and then broadcast it instead of broadcasting it with the bars. So, it fills the whole screen ... but the image is a little distorted.


Now, when your 'HD local' is actually broadcasting an HD program ... you should get a full 16:9 image filling up the screen. You may want to check this forum to see if there is a thread for your local area to see what your local stations are doing. You may also want to check the HDTV programming synopsis to see what shows are actually being broadcast in HD:
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...hreadid=164671


Also, when ESPN-HD is broadcasting actual HD material ... it will fill the whole screen and not be distorted.


Now, if you want to stretch/zoom your HD locals ... depending on what you want and what equipment you have ... the best option when your HD local is broadcasting 4:3 material with bars added to the sides is usually one of the following:

- Use SVideo and your TV's stretch/zoom modes (if your stb can downconvert HD and send it via SVideo)

- Use 480i Component and your TV's stretch/zoom modes (if your stb can donconvert HD to 480i and send it via component)

- View your analog local (if your stb can't downconvert HD at all or it's a pain to set up)

- Use your stb's stretch/zoom modes (if it has any available)


When you're watching a station that's actually broadcasting HD ... make sure to switch back over to the HD component you've been using ... wouldn't want that nice TV you bought to go to waste!
 

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IMO, ESPN's 4:3 s - t - r - e - t - c - h - e - d to 16:9 is more than a "little distorted" It's too distorted/blurry to watch. Fortunately my TV's format can "unstretch" it back to 4:3, but it's a hassle to change it for that one station.


steve.stevens,

For a fairly good idea of what's actually HD in your local area, go to:
http://titantv.com/
 
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