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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just curious how many out there have taken a look at WUTB-DT UPN (OTA UHF 41) in Baltimore, which came on-line a couple months back.


I find this channel to be unwatchable due to extreme distortion. It looks to me like they take 4:3 material and linearly stretch it to 16:9. No non-linear stretch mode, crop/zoom mode, or any attempt to maintain aspect ratio - just a straight distorted stretch. I'd liken this to watching my 480i analog cable channels in FULL mode on my Toshiba 57HX81 16:9 TV. Yuk!


Anyone else notice this or have comments? Does WUTB-DT have any plans to straighten this out?
 

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There are a few concerns about WUTB DT41's stretched picture. Currently, I am waiting on a software upgrade that will allow me to change the aspect ratio. There is a long, manual way of doing it but unfortunately, it only lasts for a few days before going back to the factory set mode. The software upgrade is currently being tested by the factory and won't be released until, hopefully, next month. We're sorry for any problems this is causing but we will constantly strive to improve the quality of our picture as releases are issued.
 

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Good to hear, and welcome to the forum, always glad to have people on here that work at the stations.


I have one question,


When are you planning on increasing signal strength to full power? I live in Baltimore City and cannot receive the signal.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Quote:
Originally posted by dmyers
There are a few concerns about WUTB DT41's stretched picture. Currently, I am waiting on a software upgrade that will allow me to change the aspect ratio. There is a long, manual way of doing it but unfortunately, it only lasts for a few days before going back to the factory set mode. The software upgrade is currently being tested by the factory and won't be released until, hopefully, next month. We're sorry for any problems this is causing but we will constantly strive to improve the quality of our picture as releases are issued.
Wow! Thanks for the response - evidently right from the horse's mouth (so to speak).


How will the distortion be fixed? Will the software upgrade give you multiple options? For instance...


1) Pillar-box mode w/vertical bars on the sides (preferrably gray like WJZ-DT 13-1 does, to reduce burn-in potential on RPTVs).


2) Crop/zoom mode - zoom in on 16:9 box in center of 4:3 picture, cropping the picture on the top & bottom. No distortion, but the top/bottom of the picture is lost unless the program is being broadcast in letterbox mode. This is the mode that WMAR-DT (2-1) & WBAL-DT (59) use, and I think there is pretty much general agreement on this forum (based upon past posts) that this picture is grainy, ugly, and undesirable. This mode is very similar to Theater Wide 2 mode on my Tosh 57HX81.


3) Nonlinear stretch mode - stretch 4:3 picture to 16:9 by stretching very little in the middle & more as you get toward the edges. As far as I know, there are no digital stations in the DC/Baltimore area that do this. Too bad, since my TV's equivalent (Tosh's Theater Wide 1 mode) is my own personal preference for watching 4:3 material from cable.


No matter what you do, hopefully it's not the 2) option, like WMAR-DT & WBAL-DT use. I never watch these two stations unless they are passing true 16:9 HDTV signals.


I think the best station in the DC/Baltimore area in terms of SDTV picture quality has got to be WRC-DT, which uses pillar-box mode.


BTW, does WUTB-DT (and/or UPN) have any future plans for HDTV?


Thanks again for your response.
 

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When WUTB first went on the air I was barely able to get a signal. In the last few weeks I can't get it at all. No big deal since what I saw of the material (regardless of aspect ratio issues) was low bit rate, highly compressed and extremely unwatchable.


Quality, not quantity


Quality, not quantity


Quality, not quantity
 

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Well, I just tuned in. I actually get a signal, but a weak one at that. 38 on the scale with frequent dropouts. Anyone know what the status is..Are they broadcasting HD, DD, increasing power output? Oh, and what will the WB channel number be?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
So far, still no HD or DD - all SDTV with standard audio.


No power increase - I'm fairly close to it & frequently see it drop in & out. In fact, the low power level is my primary gripe with this station.


WUTB-DT has in fact fixed its distorted linear picture somewhat. From what I've read in other threads, it sounds like they never did get the expected software update (or it didn't work). Instead the station engineer messed with their equipment & somehow came up with a bizarre zoom/crop mode somewhere between full-screen zoom/crop & 14:9. Whatever he did, it definitely looks better than it did.
 
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