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Setup for a Sony KV-40XBR...

Discussion in 'DIRECTV HD DVR/Receiver Discussion' started by miss_my_utv, Aug 17, 2007.

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  1. miss_my_utv

    miss_my_utv AllStar

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    Jul 25, 2007
    OK, I've taken the plunge with the new HD-DVR. Now comes the learning how to use it! (Thanks to all for the great info on this site!!)

    After a quick glance at the manual, and some playing (I'll RTFM in more detail later!), I thought I'd see if anyone here has a setup with this TV? It's really both a 4x3 & a 16x9 (depending on resolution), so I'm not sure the "auto" settings are going to do everything (i.e., resolution & no stretch, etc.).

    Best I've stumbled onto is
    * setting it to 16x9
    * turning Native ON
    * using Format to fix the SD broadcasts (i.e., 4x3)

    Anyone got anything that works better for this setup?

    thanks...
     
  2. ejjames

    ejjames Icon

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    Oct 2, 2006
    Set 480p as a resolution. Then, when you switch to a SD program, the HR20 will switch to 480p mode and your screen will "uncompress".

    I have a 36" Sony that does not accept 720p. So I have 480p and 1080i as the selected resolutions with native on.

    With my old 10-250 I constantly had to manually switch resolutions because if I switched to an SD channel while in 1080i, the screen would still be compressed. But no more! It's been by far the best feature with the HR 20 for me so far.

    Hope this helps.

    ej
     
  3. miss_my_utv

    miss_my_utv AllStar

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    Jul 25, 2007
    I'll give that a try. But, just curious, why wouldn't the same thing happen w/ 480i?

    I've got all resolutions selected. When I go to an SD channel, the TV "uncompresses", but the HR20 is outputting in one of the "format" modes because it thinks it needs to put a 4x3 picture on a 16x9 display (i.e., it doesn't know my display is "bi"!).

    I had (have) to do the same as you mentioned with the HDTivo (switch resolutions). The new one switches resolution fine, but I'm just getting into figuring out the "formats" and whether it can truly be automatic between SD & HD.

    thanks...
     
  4. ejjames

    ejjames Icon

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    Oct 2, 2006
    It would at 480i, however my sony will not allow multiple video settings for different resolutions. Since my display shows a 7.5 IRE black level for 480i and 0 IRE for everything else, it's the only way I can set everything up without always having to adjust the brightness.

    ej
     
  5. Koz

    Koz Icon

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    Sep 16, 2006
    Just so I understand what you're asking...
    Are you saying you want pillar boxes when watching 4:3 broadcasts? Then go into display settings on your HR20 and set it to "pillar box" rather than "stretch" or "crop".

    Maybe I'm not reading your post correctly.
     
  6. miss_my_utv

    miss_my_utv AllStar

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    Jul 25, 2007
    Sorry for the confusion. What I want is the HR20 to do nothing (format-wise) to either 4:3 or 16:9, just switch resolutions based upon SD or HD. This TV does both correctly on it's own (HD is shown in a "compressed" 16:9 area of the overall 4:3 screen).

    I haven't had a chance to play (or RTFM any more) any more to see if I'm just missing something obvious in the setup (likely!).

    thanks...
     
  7. miss_my_utv

    miss_my_utv AllStar

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    Jul 25, 2007
    Same here - only one set of video settings overall.

    I'm not too worried about that (I just cycle through the 4 saved sets of settings to get what I want). I'm just trying to (automatically) get a picture that isn't stretched, letterboxed, etc. out of the HR20 on both resolutions.
     
  8. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    With my Sony [see sig line]:
    Native on
    HR-20 to pillar box.
    TV to FULL
    No distortion.
    Option #2
    HR-20 to stretch
    TV set to normal
    No distortion.
     
  9. miss_my_utv

    miss_my_utv AllStar

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    Jul 25, 2007
    Somewhat different TV (40" CRT, 4x3 w/ 16x9 mode); not really any pertinent settings on the TV itself (it automatically goes 4x3 for 480i, 16x9 for 720p/1080i).

    As near as I can tell, setting the HR20 to think I've got a 16x9 display, and selecting "stretch" seems to end up with things looking fairly normal in both SD & HD.

    What would make things clearer, is if the HR20 had a "don't screw with it" format selection!

    Thanks to all for the help!
     
  10. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    The closest "What would make things clearer, is if the HR20 had a "don't screw with it" format selection!" is the native on and "stretch" as this doesn't add pillar bar.
    Having a 4:3 TV and trying to do HD is a compromise at best.
    With the HR-20 set to 4:3, the format options function on the HD resolutions. If you set it to 16:9 then the format options function on the SD resolution(s).
    Basically it's either pillar bars or letterbox and neither will give you all you want with a 4:3 TV.
     
  11. wismile

    wismile Legend

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    Jul 19, 2006
    I have also been trying to determine the best settings for my 4:3 Sony.

    Which option fills the screen best without distorting the picture?

    Are there descriptions of all the HR20 format options available?
     
  12. gully_foyle

    gully_foyle Hall Of Fame

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    Since the HR20 and many TVs (including Sonys) have different screen modes available for 480i and 1080i signals, it may be a good idea to set the HR20 for a fixed 1080i output (native mode OFF). This will allow a fixed set of screen options in each device and permit one to find an optimum set.

    IIRC, the HR10-250 was fixed format output and did little reformatting, allowing the TV to handle all that. This was great if your TV did handle all that, but not so good if it didn't (many older sets would not allow reformatting 1080i). The HR20 tries to correct this and allow native mode, but has its own set of issues as a result.
     
  13. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    This whole topic comes down to what you like [or thinks looks best for you].
    Some TVs can handle the scaling better than the HR-20 and others don't seem to. The user is the final person to make the choice.
    I use native on since I think my TV scales better than the HR-20, which it most evident when watching SD programs. So for me, native on and all resolutions are selected. I use pillar bars and change to cropped for 16:9 programs shown on SD channels.
    This doesn't mean everybody should use these settings.
    Picking 1080i or 720p, may be the best for someone else. I used 1080i on my old Sony HD since it didn't display 720p.
    It all comes down to what your TV does and how well you think it looks.
    The bottom line is each of us should play with the settings and then decide what we like, then that is the best for "us".
     
  14. ejjames

    ejjames Icon

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    Here is what I have for my 36"

    Format: 16x9
    Resolutions capable: 480p and 1080i
    TV Ratio: 16x9
    Screen Format: Pillar Box

    Give that a try and let be know what you think.
    ej
     
  15. miss_my_utv

    miss_my_utv AllStar

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    Jul 25, 2007
    True - with this TV the compromise is a smaller (~36"?) 16x9 area within the 40" 4x3 screen. But it correctly handles both signals (which made it a good "transition TV" a few years ago). If the HR20 would have a "don't muck with it" option everything would be fine. Like you stated, stretch appears to be the best available option (not sure if I end up loosing any part of the picture, or not).
     
  16. wismile

    wismile Legend

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    stretch works best for me too.

    I just wish I new what was being stretched!
     
  17. miss_my_utv

    miss_my_utv AllStar

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    Maybe on some TVs, but this one will correctly display a 4x3 image if given 480i, and switch to a 16x9 image (compressed into a smaller area of the overall screen) when given a 720p or 1080i image. So, I'd get some mucked up image if I sent an SD picture to it in 1080i. Maybe the TV has modes to try and correct it, but selecting things when changing channels is what I'm hoping to avoid.

    With the HR10, I'd switch outputs between 480i (for SD channels) & 1080i (for HD channels). Everything seemed to work fine, that way. The HR20 will do the switching automatically (a good thing!), but doesn't have an (explicit) "don't muck with the picture" mode.

    Also, I'm not worried about correcting for letterboxed SD broadcasts, or pillarboxed SD broadcasts within an HD channel, just getting an undistorted (or otherwise "enhanced") image out of both SD & HD channels. For now, anyway...
     
  18. miss_my_utv

    miss_my_utv AllStar

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    If I do that, I think I get pillar boxed 4x3 on SD channels. The TV is a 4x3 (for SD), so that doesn't work (the image would be squished horizontally?)

    I vaguely remember them making several 16x9 tubes back then (along with the 4x3s) - is that what you happen to have? If so, those settings would probably work.
     
  19. ejjames

    ejjames Icon

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    no, i have a 4x3 tube. sd material is not compressed because it is being sent at 480p, my set does not compress at 480p. Have you given my settings a try?

    I don't watch that tv often, so i'll double check my settings and get back to you tomorrow.

    ej
     
  20. veryoldschool

    veryoldschool Lifetime Achiever Staff Member Super Moderator DBSTalk Club

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    The problem with a 4:3 TV trying to show a 16:9 is a loss of resolution. The tube has only so many scan lines and when it doesn't use the full screen, then it needs to drop some of the image detail since it isn't using the full screen. The beam inside needs to line up with the grid inside so it cane just scan "tighter", but needs do drop some of the scan lines to still fit the holes in the grid.
    While it may accept a 1080i signal, I doubt it will display it in native resolution.
    My first HD ready TV was much the same. It would take a 720p and down convert it to 480 and then double it to 960 [looked like crap too], and would show a 1080i but had so much overscan that I was only able to watch the center 90% of the image.
     
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