Another pleasant surprise I notice about this "new" method too is that since my HDTV apparently bases its default format setting on an input signal's resolution and not its actual format (or aspect ratio). Under the "old" method whenever I watch a local news/PI channel here called "California NonStop" (OTA KNBC 4-2) which is a 480i 16:9 SD signal, my TV ignores the format and defaults to "4:3" regardless for all 480i/p resolution programs which annoyingly squeezes the image back to 4:3.
I had to manually place my TV on "Wide" setting to correct the distortion, then remember to return the set back to its 4:3 default setting when finished viewing otherwise all other 4:3 SD programs tuned to would be stretched to 16:9.
The DVR however seems to be based solely on the received program's format, not its resolution. So with the DVR placed on 16:9 in the settings, even an SD signal gets treated like an HD one if its native format is 16:9. So the format setting of the remote has no effect on the display and my TV automatically defaults to "Wide" for proper display of the 16:9 SD picture without me having to switch the set manually.
Great side benefit ....
This 16:9 local channel you speak of - I have a similar situation. Our local Antenna TV is shown 16:9 widescreen SD (WGHP 8.2 Greensboro NC). They pillar box the shows but show local commercials in 16:9 (if they ever did a newscast on there, I assume it wouls be 16:9, too). It used to come in on the AM21 but something happened to it on the Directv end and it no longer does. The engineer is working with Directv to get it fixed. That's not my point...
My point is another question... Do you have the directv box set to Pillar Box or something else? Without the functioning 8.2 to play with, I can't test it for myself.
Edited by ejbvt, 13 February 2012 - 02:06 PM.