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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
A dealer was demonstrating the DTC100 connected to the RCA 36" HDTV, and showed how HD material (the DirecTV demo loop) could be shown, using the remote, either letterboxed or cropped (and zoomed?), so that the image filled the 4:3 screen. Obviously you lose a couple of inches or so of material on the sides, but I like this feature a lot for watching OTA shows. Do any other STBs have this option? What about the Dish 6000 (since I haven't chosen a sat system yet)?
 

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The panasonic TU-HDS20 will do more than the RCA. It has 3 4:3 modes, Grey bars (top and bottom), stretch (to fill screen), and chop (zoom and cut off the sides).



--Rick
 

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Rick,


What TV are you using and is your 3 modes of 4:3 true on the component video feed? On my Hitachi, I cannot get rid of gray bars when I tried an RCA DTC100?


Chuck
 

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Rick,

In all fairness to Panny STB users, I must report something I observed when conducting a lip synch test with the Sony box (mine), a Panny box (a new one that a friend had just swapped out for a defective one which I had previously tried) and my built-in Zenith tuner on my Zenith HDTV.


All boxes displayed a lip synch issue during the rare times I was able to find one. No box did a better or worse job than the other. What DID surprise me though was the Panny box. Many of you know how disgusted I was when I first tried the Panny box and got picture dropouts or glitches literally every minute. Panny tech support told me it was because my signal strength was "low" on 2 of the transponders. "Low" was defined as a signal strength of 78 (all others were 85)!! I found it hard to believe that a company could design a box with such an incredibly narrow signal tolerance. Well, the new box shows this is NOT TRUE!!!! The new Panny box performed flawlessly with the same signal strength. No dropouts at all.


What really surprised me was the quality of the upconverts. It seemed to me the Panny had the best 480i to 1080i upconvert of any of the boxes. I still found the picture to be darker than the other tuners, but the overall PQ was excellent (especially without the dropouts). This makes me belive (and JPS was probably right) that tech support is giving out bad info on this box by telling people that you can't get a dropout free picture with less than 85 signal strength. Ofcourse the menu was still

S-L-O-W!
 

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Ken,


Trust me on this, I am well aware of the weaknesses of the Panny. I recented returned my in favor of the Sony. I was going to stick it out because it is the most flexible box I have ever used, but Panny support made me feel like I just spent $800 on a beta product that would have it's issues resolved in the TU-HDS21 (next gen, spoof on the 50/51 Panny stuff).


If you can put up with the fan, guide slowness, idiotic lack of responsivness of the remote and general lack of encouragement from the manufacturer then this is a good box. As you stated, the PQ (Picture Quality) is amazing. The flexability is great, and importantly Panasonic is paying for the glorious CBS HDTV we watch. I just wish they had done a little more QC on this box.


I will look at purchasing the Firewire enabled, HAVi supporting Panny box of the future because I saw flashes of greatness in their box, I just didn't get the feeling that Panasonic would be there for me and fix the annoyances that made a great product average.


--Rick
 

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Chuck666,


I have a 16:9 tv, but of the modes available, only one showed grey bars. Perhaps you TV is doing the anamorphic squeeze. If so, I don't think there is anything you can do. You may be able to find a service mode tweek that will allow you to turn it off.


--Rick
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
What about the HD100: will it allow 1080i material to be cropped and zoomed to fill a 4:3 screen? (If I could only find a dealer with one that was hooked up, I would have to ask so many questions.)
 

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Bob,


I just got my HD100 day before yesterday. I have been using it on a 4:3 PC monitor with the VGA output because my Mits is in the shop. http://www.avsforum.com/ubb/frown.gif I have been able to crop the sides and watch some of the NCAA tournament.


Keep in mind that a computer monitor doesn't do the 16:9 squeeze. I also have been seeing wierd lip sync problems with this box on digital channels. I have heard reports going both ways on this, but so far it's only on KCBS-DT in LA.


--Rick
 
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