Letter-boxed SD programming on an HD monitor?

Archived from groups: alt.tv.tech.hdtv (More info?)

What's it look like when you're watching a letter-boxed movie from a
conventional SD channel on an HD 16:9 monitor? Do you get a
relatively tiny rectangular image with lots of blank space all
around, or is there some way to zoom the image so that the
pre-formatted image fits the HD aspect ratio? If the zoom feature
exists, is it universally available, commonly available, or only on
some models from some makers? Have the makers all invented creative
marketing names for the feature?

When I look at HD sets in the stores, they're all locked into some
in-house video source, so I've never been able to really play with
one to see what it does with various sources.

--
Bert Hyman | St. Paul, MN | bert@visi.com
4 answers Last reply
More about letter boxed programming monitor
  1. Archived from groups: alt.tv.tech.hdtv (More info?)

    A letter-boxed movie on an SD channel appears in the 4:3 frame just as it
    does on a 4:3 TV set, with black above and below. So on a 16:9 set, there
    would be black above, below and on each side, assuming you are viewing your
    SD channels in "normal" mode.

    If you view them in one of the stretched or zoomed modes, then you would
    just be changing the shape of that whole 4:3 picture, retaining whatever is
    in it, such as the letter-box. If you are viewing in a "zoom" mode that
    cuts off top and bottom of the SD frame, you would cut off some or all of
    the above and below letter-boxing. So, that might work but, since you are
    stretching a small SD picture over a wide screen, resultant quality of the
    picture is going to suffer.

    mack
    austin


    "Bert Hyman" <bert@visi.com> wrote in message
    news:Xns95DD64ACCFBA1VeebleFetzer@news.visi.com...
    > What's it look like when you're watching a letter-boxed movie from a
    > conventional SD channel on an HD 16:9 monitor? Do you get a
    > relatively tiny rectangular image with lots of blank space all
    > around, or is there some way to zoom the image so that the
    > pre-formatted image fits the HD aspect ratio? If the zoom feature
    > exists, is it universally available, commonly available, or only on
    > some models from some makers? Have the makers all invented creative
    > marketing names for the feature?
    >
    > When I look at HD sets in the stores, they're all locked into some
    > in-house video source, so I've never been able to really play with
    > one to see what it does with various sources.
    >
    > --
    > Bert Hyman | St. Paul, MN | bert@visi.com
  2. Archived from groups: alt.tv.tech.hdtv (More info?)

    I often use the ZOOM function on my Sony 16:9 set for just the situation you
    describe. It works well, but as another poster stated, you are blowing up
    an image that contains very little resolution, to fit a large screen, so
    quality isn't the best. Kind of like a non-anamorphic widescreen DVD. For
    me, the result is very acceptable.

    --Dan

    "Bert Hyman" <bert@visi.com> wrote in message
    news:Xns95DD64ACCFBA1VeebleFetzer@news.visi.com...
    > What's it look like when you're watching a letter-boxed movie from a
    > conventional SD channel on an HD 16:9 monitor? Do you get a
    > relatively tiny rectangular image with lots of blank space all
    > around, or is there some way to zoom the image so that the
    > pre-formatted image fits the HD aspect ratio? If the zoom feature
    > exists, is it universally available, commonly available, or only on
    > some models from some makers? Have the makers all invented creative
    > marketing names for the feature?
    >
    > When I look at HD sets in the stores, they're all locked into some
    > in-house video source, so I've never been able to really play with
    > one to see what it does with various sources.
    >
    > --
    > Bert Hyman | St. Paul, MN | bert@visi.com
  3. Archived from groups: alt.tv.tech.hdtv (More info?)

    "dg" <dan_gus@hotmail.com> wrote:

    > I often use the ZOOM function on my Sony 16:9 set for just the
    > situation you describe. It works well. For me, the result is very
    > acceptable.

    Same here on my 42" Sony viewed at 9' for basic analog cable SD channels,
    at least the sharper ones. Of course the enlarged image loses some
    sharpness, but often the result is still very acceptable if the program
    content is actually worth watching. The enhanced impact of the larger
    screen image somewhat atones for many defects. On some channels, I even
    zoom the SD image to fill the 16:9 screen... cropping the SD's top and
    bottom often yields more forceful composition, especially on old movies.

    I don't guarantee the above comment will still hold true for larger screens
    .... 42" suits me fine and gives a suitably "cinematic" experience.

    --
    Anti-Spam address: my last name at his dot com
    Charles Gillen -- Reston, Virginia, USA
  4. Archived from groups: alt.tv.tech.hdtv (More info?)

    On 13 Jan 2005 15:53:40 GMT, Bert Hyman <bert@visi.com> wrote:
    > What's it look like when you're watching a letter-boxed movie from a
    > conventional SD channel on an HD 16:9 monitor? Do you get a
    > relatively tiny rectangular image with lots of blank space all
    > around, or is there some way to zoom the image so that the
    > pre-formatted image fits the HD aspect ratio? If the zoom feature
    > exists, is it universally available, commonly available, or only on
    > some models from some makers? Have the makers all invented creative
    > marketing names for the feature?

    If an SD letterboxed movie is a 16:9 format my Samsung SIR-T351 OTA
    digital box can zoom it to full screen on a widescreen display. If it is
    an even wider format broadcast SD, it may still have thin top/bottom bars.

    However, many set top boxes and TVs will not zoom HD content. So it is
    somewhat annoying when in rare cases a show that may have been originally
    SD letterbox is broadcast HD with pillar boxes, ending up with shrunken
    16:9 image with black all around.

    Although, my up converting DVD player will fill or zoom any which way, so
    a DVD can fill height, width, or both.
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