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These aspect ratios are driving me crazy :)

269 Views 4 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  sstieferman
First, the simple question. Is 1.85:1 the same as 16:9? If they are different which one is mostly used on dvd's? I know full widescreen (2.35:1) is used as well on dvds. Is 52"x92" 16:9, 1.85:1, or both?

I am very confused why so many people use so many different aspect ratios for their screens. I know there is a personal preference issue here but bare with me why I explain why I think only one aspect ratio should be used (and please tell me if I am wrong in my thinking). That is, 16:9 seems like the only real option. I think most dvds use 16:9 with some 2.35:1. However, I believe 16:9 is still the most popular and I believe this is the format for hdtv as well. So wouldn't it make sense to only get this size since you can fill the screen for most dvd's and hdtv as well as at this size you can still use 4:3 which is always going to come from an inferior source (comparatively) so by having the black bars on the right and left of the screen and shrinking the size you are actually allowing the inferior image (again comparatively) to be tightened a bit. So smaller screen size for bad sources and larger screen sizes for good sources. Does that make sense or am I really missing something here?
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16:9 is 1.78:1

A 16:9 screen is a very good choice if you are primarily watching movies, or wish to "optimize" your movie viewing. Its amazing how quickly you become a widescreen snob.

1.85:1 fits into a 1.78:1 screen with very small bars top and bottom. It still looks good.


92 divided by 52 is 1.77. So it is a 16x9(1.78) screen. HDTV is 16x9 (1.78), about half way between 4x3 (1.33 standard TV) and 2.35: scope film.

Thanks Andrew and William. Thanks to you I finally have this straight now.
This information is from Sony's PJCalc utility measured in inches.

69x92 1.33:1,4x3, NTSC

52x92 1.78:1, 16x9, HDTV

50x92 1.85:1

39x92 2.35:1

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