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Windows 7: Problem with aspect ratio

21 Jan 2015   #1

Windows 7
Problem with aspect ratio

Hi guys

I've just embraced the HD revolution having got a new TV for Christmas but I am having problems with videos being played with the wrong aspect ratio.

The videos are all SD TV, most have a resolution of 720x576 but some are 544x576, they should all scale to a standard 16:9 format on playback. This all worked fine on my widescreen crt.

The new TV is full HD. I've adjusted the windows desktop to 1920x1080 (I had to increase the size to make it fit - not sure if this is relevant). I've set up MC from scratch to use the display, however, in the section that covers screen size the video is missing info from the left and right sides (about 5% each side), vertical is OK.

Playing videos, the 720x576 ones are stretched horizontally and I am missing the left and right sides of the image, best guess 15-20% either side, however, the 544x576 videos are scaled correctly with no loss of image.

I've gone thru all of the MC zoom setting and it is not this that is the problem. I've also checked the registry and it appears to have the correct settings for the set up.

The video card is an ATI model and I am connecting to the TV using HDMI.

The videos play correctly in WMP12 in full screen.

An ideas?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jan 2015   #2

Windows 7 Pro x64 (1), Win7 Pro X64 (2)

I suspect your TV's setup options are not correct for use as a PC monitor like you're trying to do. Please provide the brand/model of the TV.

For example, default presentation might include a default setting that forces "overscan" of 5% (which eliminates the outer 5% of the presented image, thus "magnifying" what remains so as to still use 100% of your screen) of the outer edges, where old fashioned "noise" used to be on old CRT TV's). If you want to actually see 100% of what it being sent to the TV, you need to un-check the "overscan" option, or activate whatever your TV's user manual says you need to check... perhaps something like "pixel perfect".

Are you using this new TV as your primary monitor for the PC, replacing the old "widescreen CRT" monitor you used to have? Please provide the brand/model of your now replaced "widescreen CRT".

Yes, your Windows desktop should be set at 1920x1080, which is the native resolution of all HDTV screens. I assume you're using an HDMI cable to connect the PC to the new HDTV.

Also, SD video would normally be 4:3 aspect ratio, and would normally be 480i resolution. This contrasts with standard HD 16x9 aspect ration and 720p/1080i/1080p resolution So your videos of 720x576 and 544x576 are definitely not "standard SD". They may have been authored to be that resolution, but they are not 4:3. They are also obviously not 16x9 "widescreen", so any presentation of these images which "fills" a 16x9 screen has to have been stretched or re-sized or "zoomed" to appear to fill the screen. But in this case they should also appear distorted and "non-human", as contrasted with "original aspect ratio" which does zero stretching but does produce "black bars" either on left/right or top/bottom or both.

So sending these videos from PC to a 16:9 TV, well the TV's going to see that you're not sending it native 16x9 images. So now the "zoom" setting of the TV comes into play, and you need to adjust your setup to present things as you want to see them. Personally, I'm an "OAR" person and have no problem with black bars if the image itself is not full-screen 16x9 to begin with. I myself don't want to see human beings stretched horizontally so that they have non-human proportions, and that's what's going to happen if you "zoom" a non-16x9 image just to use all of your 16x9 screen. I want to see the original non-16x9 image in its original aspect ratio proportions presented on my 16x9 screen... I don't care if there are black bars on my 16x9 screen.

So, unless the authoring of your odd aspect ratio videos actually produced a 16x9 image (with your video imbedded inside, and with black bars imbedded, so that the TV doesn't need to zoom), it is going to apply its "zoom" setting to anything sent to it which is not 16x9. You need to set the TV accordingly, to give you what you want.

Anyway, if you will provide the details of your old widescreen-CRT monitor and your new TV, that will allow me to hopefully find the user manuals online, so I can provide some more detailed assistance in what you need to set for the TV.

Also, is it possible for you to post one or two of these "problem videos" (or maybe 10-second snippets) that you say are displaying incorrectly on your TV? They'd need to be posted to some 3rd-party web site, but if you can do that it would be very helpful as they can then be downloaded and examined, to see how they display on my own equipment.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jan 2015   #3

Windows 7

Thanks for your post but I think you have misunderstood the problem.

It is Media Center that is stretching the videos on playback not the TV, I am using MediaBrowser as a front end to my media and the overlays that it puts on the screen at the start of playback or when paused are correctly positioned for a 1920x1080 screen.

Whilst the videos are SD TV (I am in the UK so this is 720x576) they are intended for display on widescreen TV, hence the 16:9 aspect ratio. Programmes actually created for 16:9 should be displayed full screen and those that were originally 4:3 should be displayed with black margins.

I've played the videos on this system using VLC, WMP12 and DIVX player and they all play correctly in full screen, it is only MC that is having a problem.

The new TV is a Sony kdl-40w4000, the old one was not a monitor it was a widescreen SD TV, I ran the desktop at 720x576.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

22 Jan 2015   #4

Windows 7

Thanks for your help, I appear to have fixed it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Jan 2015   #5

Windows 7 Pro x64 (1), Win7 Pro X64 (2)

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by PoBear View Post
Thanks for your help, I appear to have fixed it.

Can you please describe what you did and where, so that anybody else wandering into this thread down the road can better understand where the problem/culprit really was, and what the actual solution was.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Jan 2015   #6

Windows 7

Not really a solution. I reran the TV setup as I had done probably 8 times before, entered exactly the same settings that I have on all of the previous times and the next time I played a video the extra zoom had disappeared.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

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