Wednesday, February 04, 2009

TV on widescreen (updated)

I love my 40-inch Sony Bravia widescreen TV, but unlike my old 26-inch Sony TV, it does not have a 4:3 setting, only "wide", "zoom", and "smart". So when I watch TV shows on it, the picture is stretched, and all the actors look fat. Especially noticeable with a women who you know has great legs, but they look like bridge pillars!
It bugs me, and I've been through aaaaall the settings, in vain.
Anybody has any idea for a remedy?

Bert said:
The TV can definitely do 4:3, no question there. If it doesn't, then you can safely assume that it is never fed a 4:3 signal.
Look into the player's configuration, it is most likely to be the culprit... If it is set to always output anamorphic, it will certainly do just that!

Thanks, dude. I found the setting deep in the Playstation's video settings.
... man, those black bars are wide! No wonder things are frigging distorted when it's stretched!
I'm pretty sure I did not change that setting from default, and that makes me wonder if most people are so blind that they prefer such a distorted image over some wasted screen space.

... I'll say like David Pogue did: a blog with enough readers can be a great resource for the writer too. I had almost given up getting a good picture on that TV, but I thought I'd try this way just in case.

Update: OK, now I found the right setting on the Sony DVD player too. (One of the modern "upscaling" ones.) I have to say: man, the interface on these devices sucks!! On these two machines they are very different, on one it is text, on the other, mostly small symbols. But in both cases the words or symbols are so abbreviated that you really have to guess what the hell you're looking at. The symbols are worst, but even the text: you have several settings, and one of them is called "normal"... how the hell do I know what the engineers consider "normal" in a video setting which I don't really understand what is?

posted by Eolake Stobblehouse @ Wednesday, February 04, 2009   11 comments links to this post

11 Comments:

At 4 Feb 2009, 10:55:00, Blogger FurrBrain said...

It's all in your source, mine was doing the same thing and my cable guy showed me how to bring up a "secret" menu. I don't remember exactly how it's done. Need coffee!

 
At 4 Feb 2009, 11:22:00, Blogger ttl said...

It can be set to automatically switch mode based on the aspect ratio of the program stream. I don't have the menus memorized, but its certainly there.

Sony would not sell many TV sets if the picture mode had to be fixed for all program material. In regular viewing aspect ratio changes constanly, for example during commercial breaks.

 
At 4 Feb 2009, 11:24:00, Blogger ttl said...

If I remember correctly, it is the "smart" setting.

 
At 4 Feb 2009, 11:39:00, Blogger eolake said...

You'd think so, but that one also stretches the picture.
I want one with black space on the sides, true 4:3, like my 26-inch one does. But I haven't seen one on this TV, as far as I recall. And this is true of both my DVD player and my Blu-ray player (Playstation III). (I don't watch TV, only disks.)

 
At 4 Feb 2009, 11:57:00, Blogger ttl said...

I want one with black space on the sides, true 4:3

I understand. And I am saying that the Bravia certainly can select that mode automatically.

 
At 4 Feb 2009, 12:13:00, Blogger GilsDesk said...

This is slightly off-topic, but I'm coincidentally getting ready to purchase a Sony Bravia within the next three weeks or so. We absolutely loved its image quality when viewed side-by-side with other models in the store.

Aside from the aspect ratio confusion, how do you like the picture quality now that you have it set up at home, and how is the overall ease-of-use for the set?

Thanks!

 
At 4 Feb 2009, 17:08:00, Blogger Bert said...

The TV can definitely do 4:3, no question there. If it doesn't, then you can safely assume that it is never fed a 4:3 signal.

Look into the player's configuration, it is most likely to be the culprit... If it is set to always output anamorphic, it will certainly do just that!

captcha: ustmense (oddly familiar??)

 
At 4 Feb 2009, 17:47:00, Blogger eolake said...

Thanks, I've looked at player settings, but I'll have to do it again.

Gil, the Bravia is awesome.

 
At 4 Feb 2009, 18:12:00, Blogger eolake said...

Post updated with:


Thanks, dude. I found the setting deep in the Playstation's video settings.
... man, those black bars are wide! No wonder things are frigging distorted when it's stretched!
I'm pretty sure I did not change that setting from default, and that makes me wonder if most people are so blind that they prefer such a distorted image over some wasted screen space.

 
At 4 Feb 2009, 18:24:00, Blogger Alex said...

At least you are only fighting the screen output. I have a DVD player refuses to play a region 0 disk just coz it's PAL!

Our latest player kicked over to region free very easily, just a hidden menu option, the previous one needed us to burn a service tool onto a CD to get into the menu!

I can understand (but don't like) region coding for phased release, but the TV shows they never export from the UK should be region 0 for the ex-pat market (Big thanks to Netwerk for their region 0 release of The Sweeney!)

 
At 4 Feb 2009, 18:53:00, Blogger Ray said...

My TV, (Toshiba), has one button on its remote marked "16:9" to change the aspect ratio from 4:3 to widescreen and vice-versa.

 

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