I'm stumped....

Discussion in 'Beginners, General Questions' started by JayKellen, Jan 26, 2004.

  1. JayKellen

    JayKellen Stunt Coordinator

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    A few quick questions, and yes, I know they are probably silly for most of you, but I just can't figure them out. Thanks in advance to all of you that have helped me out in getting my home theater to where it is at today. Anyway, on to the questions...

    1. When buying DVD's, some are dual layered and some are single layered. I looked up the definition of these terms a million times on this board, but I still get confused. I have some dvd's that are dual layered, yet still need to be flipped, and some I read about are single layered (Dazed and Confused) so do single layered dvd's have to be flipped over mid movie or are they just lesser quality picture? Someone told me that some single layered do not have to be flipped, so what's the deal?

    2. My dad has a 57 inch Toshiba widescreen TV, and we try to play movies on it that specifically say they are enhanced for 16 by 9 tv's, yet they still have black bars on top and bottom. We went into the tv settings and checked to make sure it was on 16 by 9 mode and it is. What gives?? The manual says that the natural picture size setting is the best to use during programs that utilize 16 by 9 picture, but when we set it to natural, it has black bars on the left and right of the screen, thus making it look like the tv is square instead of rectangular. The other settings are theater wide 1, theater wide 2, theater wide 3 and the last is full. Theater wide 1 looks the best, but we still have black bars on the top. Someone please help us newbies.

    3. The last question is in regards to bitstream cables. My dad's dvd player does not have optical outputs, just one for bitstream. He has a sony 575 watt surround sound system, and we use the orange cable that came with the system for the bitstream output. Is this lesser quality than optical, cause I have optical outputs on my system at home, and it sounds a lot crisper and cleaner than his. Should we get a dvd player that has optical outputs, or will bitstream do.

    Thanks for reading, and I apologize this is so long, but when we get this figured out, I shouldnt have to bug you for a while.
     
  2. Vince Maskeeper

    Vince Maskeeper Producer

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    Both connections carry digital data, the same exact data- and there is zero difference between the two. In some cases a crappy cable might sour the signal- but with digital it's usually an all or nothing case (either you have signal of you don't). Using a 75 ohm cable (one specifically made for Video or for digital audio) should be fine however.

    The difference in "crispness" is more likely due to differences in the speaker quality, the receivers D/A converters or the room itself.

    make sure both DD and DTS modes are turned on inside the DVD player, as this might also make a serious difference.

    Hope that helps

    -V
     
  3. ChuckSolo

    ChuckSolo Screenwriter

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    Here are some quick answers:

    1. Some of the dual layered DVDs did in fact ask you to flip the movie over. I have some that contain a movie longer than will fit on one side, and you have to flip the movie over to view the second half. Other dual layered DVDs have a fullscreen version on one side and a widescreen version on the other. These days some DVD players read dual layered DVDs by refocusing the laser to read through the top layer down to the second layer underneath. Some players pause for a second or two as the laser re-focuses.

    2. Some movies that are shot or formatted in a widescreen format larger than 16x9 will indeed still have black bars on the top and bottom, even on a widescreen TV. Check the FAQ section of these forums for a full explantation.

    3. Digital output from a DVD player to a receiver using the optical or coaxial digital connections are indeed "bitstream." Most DVD players have an internal menu where this must be setup for use with Dolby Digital and DTS sound. How old is your receiver? I would imagine that your DVD player is calling the coaxial output "bitstream." You should not be able to distinguish much of a difference, if any, in sound qulity between a coaxial or an optical digital output.
     
  4. Jeff Gatie

    Jeff Gatie Lead Actor

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    Jay, the proper way to view anamorphic (enhanced for 16x9) DVD's on a Toshiba is to set the DVD for 16x9 output and the TV view mode to "Full" (not "Natural"). Yes, you will get small black bars for any 2.35:1 movies, as others have said.
     
  5. Gary Mays

    Gary Mays Agent

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    Jay, just to reinforce what Jeff Gatie said about 'full" being the correct viewing mode on Toshibas:

    He's dead right, as far as my Toshiba 50hdx82 is concerned. The manual for my set is flat-out wrong on this matter; as it says to use the "natural" mode.

    Ignore the manual; use "full" for amamorphic DVDs.
     

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