Quantum Leap: Reformatted to fit your WIDESCREEN TV

Mark-P

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Sep 26, 2005
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Mark Probst
I happened to be flipping through channels when I landed on UHD (Universal High Definition). UHD is a high definition channel devoted to Universal movies and TV shows. Well, they were showing Quantum Leap in Hi-Def! Now the show was produced from 1989 to 1993 which is definitely pre-hi-def. The show was originally broadcast 1.33:1 but I have no source to know if it was shot on film or videotaped. My best guess is that it was shot on film which is why it was easily bumped up into hi-def. Now that's all fine and dandy, but they were showing this in Widescreen (no pillarboxing). The image had been cropped (probably mostly from the bottom). This was not a case of stretching the sides like some high-def channels (e. g. TNT) do with their 4x3 shows to make them fit the wider aspect ratio. So what do you all think? Is it a good idea to take older 4x3 filmed shows and reformat them for widescreen TV, or is it simply pan and scan rotated by 90 degrees?
 

TravisR

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Nov 15, 2004
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The basement of the FBI building
No one likes it but, like you said, it's equivalent to what channels have always done with their SD stuff too. I never understand why people seemed surprised when HBO, TNT or UHD alter the aspect ratio of their programs.
 

Greg_S_H

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May 9, 2001
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Greg
It's a bad idea. To add insult to injury, the episodes appear uncut and with music intact! They run the saga cells, and I watched Another Mother, and it had every song in it. I suppose one positive thing is that it does make hybrids possible: you could own the altered season sets, record the audio from UHD and combine them onto your own discs.

Sort of related, I had never seen Tombstone before, so I recorded it a few weeks ago when it aired on one of the HD channels. I finally sat down to watch it last night, and immediately noticed that something looked screwy with the framing. The whole thing had that surreal look you get when zooming is being used, because it turns out Tombstone is 2:35 and was being broadcast in 1.78. I knew HD broadcasters did that when the format was new, but I thought they had gotten over it when I saw the Star Wars movies in their proper aspect ratio, along with several other big name movies. I guess the lion's share of library titles are not going to be afforded the same courtesy. I hate that we have to go through reverse P&S with 16x9 sets.
 

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