Help - Confused about aspect ratio!!

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Dave Zemens, Jan 10, 2002.

  1. Dave Zemens

    Dave Zemens Auditioning

    Dec 28, 2001
    Likes Received:
    I have a brand new 36" Sony Wega KV-36HS20 HDTV. I have a Sony NSP 700 progressive scan DVD player. I am confused about the 16:9 settings.

    I assume I should set the DVD player to think the TV is a 16:9, or do I set it at 4:3 or 4:3 pan scan?

    Then, when a DVD is playing, I see it in a letter boxed fashion with top and bottom bars. However, when I look at the Wega setup menu, the 16:9 mode is set to "Off", not "On". When I set it to "On", the display gets narrower and the black letter box bars bigger. However, the actual move scene shown is still just as wide as it was before I set the 16:9 mode to "On".

    In other words, one of these two letter box modes is the wrong. I can't tell which it is or which one is correct. It appears to me that the "narrower" mode, which shows when I set the 16:9 mode to "On", artifically makes the characters in the scene look to "squashed".

    I am confused. What settings do I use for the DVD and the TV? Isn't the TV supposed to automatically set the correct 16:9 mode. Thanks.
  2. ChrisMatson

    ChrisMatson Cinematographer

    Dec 14, 2000
    Likes Received:
    I have the 36XBR450 and I believe that your set will also auto-detect a 16:9 signal. Set your DVD player for 16:9 TV. When the player sends an anamorphic signal, the TV will detect this and should switch automatically to 16:9 mode, giving you about 30% better resolution!
    Good luck,
    Edit for clarification:
    If you setup the DVD player for 4:3 Pan&Scan, AND then manually select 16:9 mode, you will get a compressed, funny looking picture.
  3. Ken Chan

    Ken Chan Producer

    Apr 11, 1999
    Likes Received:
    Note that you will still get black bars on many movies. Most recent films are either 1.85:1 or 2.35:1 (roughly). 16:9 is 1.78:1.

    So with a 1.85:1 film, you will either see thin black slivers or no black bars at all, depending on how much overscan your TV is displaying.

    For 2.35:1 -- the more "cinematic" ratio -- you will definitely get black bars, although they will be shorter than they are on a 4:3 TV.


Share This Page