Just got DVR, now my HDTV won't let me adjust picture size

Discussion in 'Displays' started by Marc^H, Jan 7, 2005.

  1. Marc^H

    Marc^H Agent

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    Anyone else had this problem?

    I just installed a DVR cable box (Scientific Atlanta Explorer 8000HD) from Time Warner Cable (NYC).

    Now, for some reason, my month-old Toshiba 30HF84 widescreen TV will not let me adjust picture size when viewing broadcast TV (still works fine with DVDs, so I know it isn't the TV that's the problem). With the old analog cable it had no problems with this.

    The HD channels show in full widescreen, but everything else comes in at standard size, and the TV just says "option not available" when I try to stretch the image into wide mode.

    Ever heard of this before?
     
  2. John Whittle

    John Whittle Stunt Coordinator

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    Did you change inputs to the set? What was the "old" connection and what's the "new" connection. Some services aren't availabe on some digital inputs (you'd have to ask the designers why they did that, but the set may not have the capability to scale a digital signal).

    If you have an option of also using a s-video or other analogue input, try that and see what happens. I suspect it's a digital scaling thing.

    John
     
  3. Mark:F

    Mark:F Stunt Coordinator

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    Sounds similar to my situation with TWC's high def Pace box. The box connects to my Sony HDTV thru the TV's HDTV component input. The TV itself is designed so that a TV signal coming in thru the HDTV input will ALWAYS be set to "full".
    Your TV may work the same way. Two ways around this...my TWC remote control for the Pace box can stretch or zoom ANY picture, via the "Enter" button ...also, if you have a vcr hooked up, you can watch SDTV thru the vcr and then have use of all the TV's zooming choices.
     
  4. ChuckSolo

    ChuckSolo Screenwriter

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    It appears that you are watching the standard def channels through the same input (component) that you are watching the HD channels, correct? I have a Scientific Atlanta HD3100 and have it hooked this way:

    1. To receive HD channels, the TV is hooked via component to my TV's Component 2 input. My RCA 40" HDRPTV is like your Toshiba in that it will not allow any type of picture stretching via the component or DVI inputs. In HD, the picture is "fixed." I too can watch the analog channels via this connection and they are framed in 4:3 mode with the pillars on either side of the picture.

    2. To receive SD channels, I have the SA HD3100 hooked to my TV's S-Video2 input. This allows me to manipulate the picture anyway I want. HI Def channels cannot be viewed via S-Video so the screen is blank if I tune into one of the HD channels while in this input mode.

    I guess it comes down to how many outputs your DVR has and how many inputs your TV has. I am lucky since my TV has 2 Component, 3 S-Video, 3 Composite and 1 DVI inputs so I have a lot of flexibility.

    [​IMG]
     
  5. Josh Mc

    Josh Mc Extra

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    Also try the # button on the keypad of the cable remote. On the Hi-Def model of the SA DVR this cycles thru the cable boxes stretch modes. Not sure if it would work on standard DVR or not.
     
  6. Doug Pyle

    Doug Pyle Second Unit

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    What ChuckSolo said, plus:

    3) I like this option best for analog stations: I use a high-quality coax splitter (one I no longer use for my discontinued Roadrunner service). I send a cable directly from the splitter to my Sony 34XBR910 coax input, bypassing the cable box. The Sony allows no image-stretching via component & DVI inputs, but I can fully manipulate the image via the coax cable input.

    That gives me the most flexibility, and it restores my dual-picture option as well. I can simultaneously view one station via the cable box, and another station with the TV.

    A further advantage with this is that my TV handles analog standard-definition better than the cable box does. I can compare images from the coax input, and the s-video input from the cable box. The image is much better on my TV for some analog stations when viewed via the coax input coming from the wall (i.e. splitter). This is due, I think, to the higher quality electronics in the HD-TV compared to the electronics, and any distortion, from the box (a Scientific Atlanta Explorer 3250HD box.)

    Also, when zooming, the Sony's zoom results in a better-looking image than the zoomed picture using the # key for the cable box.

    I use a high-quality 2-way splitter with equal-capacity outputs, labelled 3.5 dB. I think this is important, as some splitters favor one output over the other. The downside of splitting could be a risk of weakening the signal strength, but I have not noticed any such problem with my setup.
     
  7. MichaelWalsh

    MichaelWalsh Extra

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    Did TWC allow you to install your own HD box? They are insisting on "professional installation" out this way despite it only being a box switch from a standard 8000 to the 8000HD. While free, this would undoubtedly require me to take at least a half day off work.
     
  8. Mark:F

    Mark:F Stunt Coordinator

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    Yeah Mike it blows....but the installer often has to view complex info on the tv screen...in my case he found a need to give me a different TWC splitter to bring in a particular block of stations....and they didn't show up for my appointment at first! Suggest you call to confirm the a.m. of your date!
     
  9. Jeff Gatie

    Jeff Gatie Lead Actor

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    I do not know about the SciAtlanta box, but my Motorola box has a setup value called "4:3 Override" that allows you to set the default output mode for regular 4:3 TV to 480i, 480p, 720p or 1080i, without effecting the HD output. This allows my Toshiba to display the HD channels in 1080i and keep all regular channels displayed in 480p so I can use the stretch modes, all through the same set of component inputs. Tried to look up the manual for the SciAtlanta box online, but they require registration. You might want to look there to see if your box it has something similar.
     
  10. Tim Jin

    Tim Jin Supporting Actor

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    I have the SA8000HD. You need to go into the setup menu for the box and choose stretch mode. This will allow the picture to be strech in SD and HD will remain the same. You cannot use component and s video at the same time with the 8000HD. You can only choose the aspect ratio in the DVR box and not on your TV.

    Just go into the setup menu of the DVR box and change it to stretch mode.
     
  11. dany

    dany Supporting Actor

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    Which inputs are hooked up. Do you use the HDMI?
     
  12. Tim Jin

    Tim Jin Supporting Actor

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    I use my Components cable.
     
  13. jeff peterson

    jeff peterson Supporting Actor

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    You need to tell the DVR that your HDTV accepts 480i (or 480p, your preference) and 1080i. Additionally, setup the 'passthrough' option in it's menu settings. The TV will not allow stretching of 1080i (high def) material. THe passthrough option allows standard def shows to be shown in 480i and HD shows to be in 1080i where stretching isn't needed.

    Your problem is that it's only set to 1080i. Check out Scientific Atlanta's website for your DVR's instructions.
     

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