Why can't all studios do anamorphic 4:3?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Vince Maskeeper, Oct 26, 2001.

  1. Vince Maskeeper

    Vince Maskeeper Producer

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    Okay, Stick with me for a second...
    I know the topic header sounds like a misinformed newbie question, but another thread (http://www.hometheaterforum.com/uub/Forum15/HTML/032329.html
    AIM: VinceMaskeeper
    Do you want SOUTH PARK on DVD in order, rather than themed sets? Join our overwhelming majority !!
    [Edited last by Vince Maskeeper on October 26, 2001 at 12:57 PM]
     
  2. Richard Kim

    Richard Kim Producer

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    Actually, doesn't anamorphic 4x3 actually result in LESS resolution on 16x9 TVs?
    I think we should just stick with things the way they are when it comes to 4:3 transfers.
    [Edited last by Richard Kim on October 26, 2001 at 01:00 PM]
     
  3. Jesse Leonard

    Jesse Leonard Second Unit

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    You would loose resolution (even on a 16x9 set). Anytime you are window boxing a 4:3 image you are loosing resolution (ie. you are adding black bars to where there used to be image).
    I sure hope studios don't start doing this! I can't think of a single thing this would be good for. I have a 16x9 set and 4:3 material is formated just fine and I get the full resolution when it isn't windowboxed.
     
  4. Jason Seaver

    Jason Seaver Lead Actor

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  5. Jesse Leonard

    Jesse Leonard Second Unit

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    Vince,
    I don't know if you realize or not, but a 16x9 set can show 4:3 material natively. So your idea would hurt everyone.
    The ONLY thing this would allow is for people with 16x9 sets that lock into Full mode when sent a progressive signal. Your idea would allow them to play 4:3 in progressive, but a great loss in resolution!
     
  6. Michael St. Clair

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    You would only get 540 lines of horizontal resolution instead of 720. It is not worth compromising this just to appease owners of early-generation (defective?) 16:9 sets that either stretch everything or do a piss-poor job of scaling 4:3 material down to fit inside of their wide screen.
     
  7. AaronMK

    AaronMK Supporting Actor

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    Anamorphic does not mean greater resolution. Whether a disc is anamorphic or not, it still uses a 720x480 frame size. Anamorphic just means that it is stretched to a 16x9 ratio, but the resolution is still the same. When non-anamorphic, 4:3 material can take advantage of the whole frame and sould offer a sharper picture.
    For material with wider aspect, ratios anamorphic encoding will allow the picture to take avantage of a greater portion of the 720x480 frame, since there is a lower percentage of unused space when putting a widescreen film into a 16x9 frame than when fitting it into a 4:3 frame. That is why anaorphic encoding is better for widescreen films.
    If the reason for wanting to do this is so you don't have to switch the setting of a 16:9 television, think about all the people who have their players set to 4:3 letterbox. They would have to switvh that setting everytime this was used.
    Maybe I am missing something or lack certain relevent knowledge (very likely [​IMG] ), but I have a hard time seeing how using less of DVDs resolution will give you a better picture.
    ------------------
    My DVD's
    If a movie is not available in OAR, than it might as well not be available at all.
     
  8. Mark Bendiksen

    Mark Bendiksen Screenwriter

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    So what everyone is saying is that they like the idea, right? [​IMG]
     
  9. Jeff Ulmer

    Jeff Ulmer Producer

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    As has been stated above, this would be a bad idea, as you are losing horizontal resolution by squeezing 4:3 info into a 16x9 frame.
    ------------------
    Zardoz Online | Burt Lancaster is The Swimmer | dOc
     
  10. Matthew_S

    Matthew_S Second Unit

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    quote: Because it's a dumb idea.[/quote]
    Come on, now. I think Vince had a good idea that I was buying until reading these replies. It might not be feasible but I don't think there's a need to take the "HT elitist snob" road...
    [Edited last by Matthew_S on October 26, 2001 at 01:53 PM]
    [Edited last by Matthew_S on October 26, 2001 at 01:53 PM]
     
  11. Michael St. Clair

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  12. Ted Todorov

    Ted Todorov Producer

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    Sounds to me like you want a Malata DVD player. When the Malata is in 16:9 mode it will do an anamorphic squeeze on 4:3 material, with excellent results. That way, your TV can always stay in anamorphic mode.
    Ted
     
  13. Jon Robertson

    Jon Robertson Screenwriter

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    I'm all for anamorphic 4:3 supplements, like on nearly every single Anchor Bay disc post-1999, but leave the feature itself alone, because I know I don't care about maximum resolution for extra material, for I do for the film itself.
     
  14. Philip Hamm

    Philip Hamm Lead Actor

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    Like everyone said.. This is a very poor idea. It will mean losing a great deal of vertical resolution on all 4x3 material.
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    Philip Hamm
    AIM: PhilBiker
     
  15. Greg_Y

    Greg_Y Screenwriter

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    I always liked that Anchor Bay did this with all of their supplemental material. Never have to flip out of Full Mode on my Toshiba 16:9. I never realized that it results in less resolution for those extras. Drat!
     
  16. Vince Maskeeper

    Vince Maskeeper Producer

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    quote: I don't know if you realize or not, but a 16x9 set can show 4:3 material natively. So your idea would hurt everyone.[/quote]
    No, obviously I know this- however there are some annoying issues:
    1) Knowing what material is 4:3 and what is anamorphic on a 16x9 display is sometimes tough. Especially on documentaries, and the like. Manually switching is a pain, and less so for me, but moreso thinking about wider acceptance of widescreen in the homes. I think most people would rather have it automatically properly formatted, rather than have to decipher the aspect ratio.
    2) Most TV squeezes, especially non-crt displays seem to discard resolution rather than squeezing lines closer together when windowboxing for 4x3. Seems like your losing resolution either way.
    3) Most documentary type extras on DVD have come from broadcast sources, which are comparibly low resolution to begin with... I've tried some experimenting with the discs that actually do the anamorphic/pan and scan on the fly- and on my projector there was no noticible difference in quality 4:3 downconverted zoomed out vs similar documentary footage native 4:3. Note, I didn't suggest 4:3 formatted programming- rather just behind the scenes stuff and promo documentaries.
    But I guess I didn't really think about it too long- I did realize a loss in resolution- but everything I had tried made exactly zero difference. Just trying to think in terms of mainstream acceptance of mixed ratios- and manual determination and selection is probably not going to fly. And thus the desire for pan and scan continues.
    [Edited last by Vince Maskeeper on October 26, 2001 at 03:15 PM]
     
  17. Michael St. Clair

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  18. DaViD Boulet

    DaViD Boulet Lead Actor

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    quote: It would give a few people a better picture at the expense of the majority. The majority being both those who own 4:3 sets, and those who own correctly designed 16:9 sets.[/quote]
    It gives no one a better picture.
    16x9 viewers see a 4x3 image with less resolution than a 4x3 encoded 1.33:1 image that their TV or DVD player would have windowboxed instead.
    Maximizing resolution means picking the frame shape (16x9 or 4x3) that most closely matches the aspect ratio of the image you want to encode...in other words...the shape that has the least amount of wasted "dead" space when the image is fit inside it.
    We call that wasted space "letterboxing bars" when we put a wide image in a 4x3 frame. We call it "windowboxing bars" when we put a narrow image in a 16x9 frame (in the case of 1.66:1 transfers you end up with wasted dead space either way...but you wast LESS in a 16x9 frame which is why studios should anamorphically encode 1.66:1 transfers).
    If someone is bothered by having to switch aspect ratios on their TV the solution is not in degrading the resolution of the source image. It's getting a DVD player or scaler that automatically reformats that image.
    You see, if you start with a 4x3 image with 720 horizontal samples, and your DVD player ads side-bars and sends the image to your TV as a '16x9' image...you've still got that 720-pixel image between those side bars. You haven't lost any resolution (unlike downconverting an anamorphic DVD for a 4x3 TV...this is because you literally have 480 discrete lines for the vertical resolution of your TV, but you don't have literal "lines" for your horiztonal resolution...that's a frequency issue).
    Bottom line is take this idea which doesn't improve the image and aim it at DVD player manufacturers. Get them to provide more players like the Panasonic that windowbox and zoom 4x3 material on the fly so everything looks 16x9 to your TV...but without sacrificing resolution for 1.33:1 material.
    -dave
    [Edited last by DaViD Boulet on October 26, 2001 at 04:10 PM]
     
  19. Kevin Coleman

    Kevin Coleman Second Unit

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    David,
    I have a Malata DVD player. It does the same thing as the Panasonic. Aren't you actually losing resolution this way also on 4:3 Material. I know my Malata windowboxes 4:3 automatically but I can tell a little bit of differenc in resolution. I really don't know? To tell you the truth I am kind of confused.
    Kevin C. [​IMG]
     
  20. Robert Dunnill

    Robert Dunnill Second Unit

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