Weird DVD player question.

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by David Nash, Nov 26, 2002.

  1. David Nash

    David Nash Agent

    Joined:
    May 24, 2002
    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Louisville, KY
    Real Name:
    David
    I'm not exactly sure how to ask this question, but here goes. I have a Sony DVP-S530D DVD player (3 years old) and a Hitachi 50" Ultravision big screen TV bought in 1997. I buy all DVD's in widescreen version because my next TV will be HDTV widescreen. I have the DVD set to 16.9/4.3 wide mode always. Most all DVD's will play with the letterbox (Black lines) at top and bottom of screen. I assumed this was because of the widescreen version of DVD I bought. This does not bother me and I actually prefer it now. My two most recent DVD's I bought were Monsters Inc. and Spiderman.
    Spiderman is the widescreen version but plays on the whole screen. Monsters Inc, gives you both options, but again plays on the whole screen in either version. All other DVD's I own play as I what I would call widescreen. Could my DVD player be the cause of this or is there something I'm missing. Could it be the newer DVD's are coded differently and my player is not reading them correctly? This is actually not a problem just something I want to fully understand. Any answers would be appreciated.
    Thanks,
    David
     
  2. Ken Seeber

    Ken Seeber Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 1999
    Messages:
    787
    Likes Received:
    2
    Trophy Points:
    0
    The problem is, you have your DVD player set as if it's connected to a widescreen TV when it isn't.

    With widescreen DVDs, you're seeing the picture vertically stretched by one-third. If the movie was shot in the 1.85:1 aspect ratio, which both "Spider-Man" and "Monsters Inc." were, the stretching causes the picture to cover your entire 4:3 (standard) screen. Movies shot at wider aspect ratios --- typically 2.35:1 (such as the "Star Wars" films or "The Lord of the Rings") --- will still display narrow black bands. The picture itself is still stretched out of shape, though.

    The correct setting for your DVD player is 4:3 letterbox.
     
  3. David Nash

    David Nash Agent

    Joined:
    May 24, 2002
    Messages:
    39
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Louisville, KY
    Real Name:
    David
    Thanks Ken. That was exactly what I needed to know. I switched it to 4.3 Letterbox and now I'm able to view Monsters Inc. both in fullscreen and widescreen. However, I noticed that the few DVD's I have that are in the 2:35.1 now play with a very large letterbox, making the picture even more skinny. I now understand why, but other than the size of the letterbox I can't really see any difference. What I mean is there doesn't appear to be anything missing from the picture. I viewed Gladiator in both modes (16.9/4.3 widemode vs. 4.3 letterbox) and noted on the outer most parts of the screen on certain scenes to see if anything was missing and there didn't seem to be. Just curious what advantages/disadvantages are there to setting it to 4.3 letterbox with my particular TV. Also, if in the future I purchase a HDTV widescreen TV I assume some DVD's will also show a letterbox due to the aspect ratio of 2:35.1 or larger. Is this correct?
    Thanks in advance.
    David
     
  4. Jack Briggs

    Jack Briggs Executive Producer

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 1999
    Messages:
    16,738
    Likes Received:
    129
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Yes, that's correct.

    But for now, with your 4:3 display, you must tell the DVD player it's outputting to a 4:3 device so that it can correctly scale 16:9-encoded discs in their proper aspect ratio.

    Unless you know how to collapse your monitor's scanning-line raster into a 16:9 shape, then you must always leave the Sony 530 at 4:3 letterbox.

    When you get a monitor that's either 16:9 or one that has a 16:9 mode, then you set the DVD player to 16:9 output.
     
  5. John-Miles

    John-Miles Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2001
    Messages:
    1,216
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    110
    in either mode you would see the whole movie, but you should be noticing that maximus has put on weight since you came out of 16x9 mode. although sometimes the stretching can be rather subtle, if you did it all the time you may ahve just never noticed.
     

Share This Page