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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Although I don't have an HD set yet, I picked up a Panasonic TU-DST52 STB so I can watch shows such as "CSI" in 16x9. It works great for this, and I can definitely say that I'd rather watch a *digital* broadcast on a 4x3 NTSC set, than an analog broadcast.


But, this STB seems to have a strange design problem: When displaying a 16x9 image on a 4x3 set, the letterboxed image is not centered vertically -- the black bar at the top is much smaller than the one at the bottom. I'd say, instead of being matched 50/50, it's more like 30/70.


It's not that big of a deal, but I just can't figure out WHY they would design it like that. Maybe my particular unit is whacked out? It's not my set (a Sony XBR), as other letterboxed material (DVDs, C-Band satellite, and the DTC-100 I used to own) all look perfectly centered.


Anybody else run into this? Or can anyone else see if there's exhibits the same phenomenon? First the DVD-R "black level bug," and now this -- seems like whenever I buy something from Panasonic, there's something odd about it!


--Bill R.
 

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I think it's your unit and you should return it for a replacement.


My Panny centers a 16x9 fine on a 4x3 Toshiba 60" projection.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the info. I'll see about getting a replacement -- hopefully that'll solve the problem.


--Bill R.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
One other thing I'll add to this: After doing some further checking, I found that even if I display an SD program in 4x3 (so it fills my entire screen), I'm getting a black bar at the bottom -- measures about 10 scan lines on my scope -- so obviously this thing is shifting EVERYTHING up, not just 16x9 video.


It'll be interesting to see if I can get any warranty service on this. Even though it was brand new in the box, I bought it on eBay ...


--Bill R.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Bachelor,


Normally that is a definite possibility, but I've ruled that out in this case for two reasons:


1. The problem is not evident with any other source. Comparing an analog broadcast with a digital broadcast of the same material, the digital (via the TU-DST52) is shifted up.


2. I can *measure* the size of the offset by analyzing the signal with a waveform monitor. With this, I can count scan lines, and in the full-screen 4x3 mode, there are 10 blank lines at the bottom of the frame.


--Bill R.


And to jckessler, thanks for the info on the warranty. I'll try contacting Panasonic today ...
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Oh, and I just thought of another reason to rule out the display -- here's an image that I acquired with an NTSC capture device. I turned on the "gray" bars to make it easier to see the areas in question. You should notice that the top bar is smaller than the bottom -- not by an incredible amount, but certainly enough to be noticeable.

http://home.attbi.com/~videojanitor/TU-DST52.jpg


--Bill R.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
For anybody following this thread, I spoke to a technician at Panasonic today, and the first thing he told me was that it's NORMAL for the picture on the TU-DST52's output to be shifted up!:confused:


Only after going over this several times did he finally agree to let me send it in for evaluation, and even then, I was told that because I bought it on eBay, the warranty situation was "iffy."


So, we'll see what happens, but I have a feeling this isn't going to work out in my favor (not much does!).


--Bill R.
 

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After reading this thread I went back and looked carefully at my picture last night.


I was WRONG in my previous post.


My Panny does have a noticable shift to the top in letterbox mode. Perhaps what you were told by the tech was correct.


I do NOT get a black bar in full mode, however. That does seem to be a problem.


Now that I've seen it, it seems like a good idea (maybe I'm rationalizing). If I don't need to see the entire screen, why not focus on the upper screen that is easier to see when in a recliner anyway?
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
TiVo_Al,


Thanks for going back and checking it again. I'm glad (I think) to know that your unit exhibits the same phenomenon -- I suppose it is something I can live with as long as I know the one I own is not defective. Still, I can't understand why they would design it that way, since it seems like it would be easier to have EQUAL black bars than unequal.


In the "full" mode, the amount of black at the bottom is pretty minimal, so it's possible that if yours is doing that, it might not be seen depending on how much overscan you've got. The best way to "see" it is with a scope, which is how I measured it as being 10 lines.


I tell ya, I spend most of everyday dealing with problems that you would never even consider being a possibility -- whether it's a $300 consumer item, or an $80,000 piece of professional gear, I run into the oddest problems.


Thanks again for the confirmation. --Bill R.
 
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