Black bars on widescreen DVD's

Discussion in 'Displays' started by Brandon Steck, Nov 20, 2005.

  1. Brandon Steck

    Brandon Steck Stunt Coordinator

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    Most people want to know how to get rid of the black bars on widescreen DVD's on widescreen sets. My question is the opposite. A widescreen television has an aspect ratio of 1.78:1. As we know, 2.35:1 DVD's have obvious black bars to make up the difference. My question is, why don't you see black bars on 1.85:1 DVD's? Shouldn't you see bars on anything wider than 1.78:1? Am I losing picture on my 1.85:1 DVD's? I've been wondering this for awhile, but just got around to asking.
     
  2. Rocky F

    Rocky F Second Unit

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    Well, there are couple of possible reasons. One has to do with overscan. Depending on what kind of TV you have, a certain amount of picture info is lost around the edges of the screen. This is most apparent on CRT (direct view and RP) sets. I think that there is a lower amount on LCD and plasmas, although I don't have those to compare. On my CRT RP anything between 1.66:1 and 1.85:1 show no bars.
    Sometimes, though, movies which were matted to 1.85 theatrical just have the mattes opened a very tiny bit to fill the 1.78:1 screen.
     
  3. John S

    John S Producer

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    I have seen digital displays do just this on 1.85:1.....

    Most displays will not have bars from 1.66:1 - 1.85:1 as posted above already for various reasons.

    I have yet to see a Disney 1.66:1 produce bars on the sides of any display yet though. I think most people are probably happy about that one.
     
  4. Michael TLV

    Michael TLV THX Video Instructor/Calibrator

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    Greetings

    A 1.85:1 film will show black bars if your overscan is less than 2.5 to 3%. Typically, most sets shoot for 5% so you never see it ... even if it is there.

    A 1.85:1 film like bring it on ... shows bars if you decrease the overscan to 2.5%

    Overscan is a necessary evil for TV's and it saves manufacturers money to do this as it covers up broadcast errors that have nothing to do with the tV.

    Regards
     
  5. Brian Osborne

    Brian Osborne Stunt Coordinator

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  6. Steve Schaffer

    Steve Schaffer Producer

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    I've had a widescreen crt-based rptv main set for over 4 years and recently purchased a little 26" Sharp Aqous widescreen for the bedroom. The Sharp is connected to a Sony upconverting dvd player via HDMI, and this is the first time I've seen black bars when playing a 1:85 aspect ratio dvd--they're small but they are present. If I use the component input on the Sharp it overscans and I don't see the black bars on 1:85 movies.
     

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