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  1. #1
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    Do you have this LCD TV problem?

    I just bought my first LCD TV (42" 1080P LG).

    Everything was fine until the second I hooked up HD. Now 99% of the channels show the screen as a small cube with big black gaps on the sides.

    I was on the phone with LG and Comcast for several HOURS changing every single setting possible and could not fix this. If I unhook HD then it shows everything full screen... but with HD I get a small cube display on all non-HD channels.

    I am trying to figure out if this is normal? My mother's LCD does not do this and she has a setting to make it stretch to full screen... it seems LG does not.

    Do you have this problem with your LCD TV? Thanks.

    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails cube1.jpg  

  2. #2
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    Yeah, ours does that. I thought it was normal.

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  3. #3
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    Sorry nevermind... I found the problem.

    I have cancelled my cable service with extremely poor quality analog channels to digital and HD from Direct TV.

    This is what was causing the problem with odd screen sizing and poor quality. Never get analog channels with LCD Tv's. Must have digital or HD channels available. HD is awsome... what a huge difference.

    EDIT: AH-Tina, you were posting at the same time I was.... do you have cable or satellite? Aren't the HD channels fantastic?... so super crystal clear.
    Last edited by Frosty; 12-31-2007 at 08:19 PM.

  4. #4
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    We have cable. We tried satellite once, but because we're on the lake and have basically a forest of trees all behind us...we could only get spotty reception and mostly when it was winter and there were no leaves on the trees.

    I'm not sure I understand what you said the problem was, but I would love to be able to fix it.

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  5. #5
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    you guys just need to change the 16:9 and 4:3 aspect ratio (wiki) on your tv. Should be a few easy clicks on your remote.


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  6. #6
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    AH-Tina,

    With your cable do you have HD channels and digital channels?

    The problem with mine was that I was using Comcast's basic analog cable (which produces VERY lousy screen quality). You must get HD or digital on LCD TV's. I know this will fix the very poor picture quality 100%... but I wonder if that will fix the screen sizing and get rid of those gaps. So you also have black gaps around your screen? Why does that happen only on some channel but not others?

    Eming,

    Not on my LG. I was on support now for 3+ hours talking even to the supervisor and they could not fix it! My mother's LCD does not have this problem. I think this might be a problem related to LG in specific not having decent settings? My ratio is currently at 16:9 is that not correct?
    Last edited by Frosty; 12-31-2007 at 08:31 PM.

  7. #7
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    Most TV broadcasts (including cable) are in 4:3 format. If you have a wide-screen 16:9 TV it should be set to display 4:3 as 4:3, which will then show black blocks on the side. If it is set to display as 16:9 to fill the screen everything is spread out horizontally, and everyone looks like Cartman or Stewie. The 16:9 format setting is for shows (usually movies) that are in wide-screen format.
    It seems like almost every restaurant, customer service, lounge, etc sets their wide screen TV to 16:9 to show that it is a wide screen TV. I think that is stupid.

    To test if your 16:9 setting works properly, try watching a DVD movie that is marked as being the wide-screen version.
    Last edited by Disgruntled; 12-31-2007 at 08:54 PM.

  8. #8
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    We have an HD cable box. On the HD channels, there is the black gap on both sides. On the regular channels, there is no gap. The picture quality is fine though...just the weird black gaps.

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  9. #9
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    Disgruntled,
    I tried both the 16:9 and 4:3... when I put it to 4:3 the gaps get even bigger and the picture shows up in even a smaller cube. No matter what I did I could not get it to display full screen.. but this problem only happens when I have the HD box hooked up to it. HD channels show full screen but NOT regular channels then.

    Ah-Tina,
    I don't know what cable company you use but I had Comcast. The reason I had to cancel was because they didn't have any of the decent more popular channels available in HD for example like MTV, VH1, Bravo etc... or at least not in my area. I would have ended up paying almost $80/month for digital from them!

    Whereas now with Direct TV I will pay only $45/month. I HOPE Direct TV is good because they are locking me into 2 yr contract which I do not like.

    But I just saw an HD channel today for the first time on my LCd and wow!!! Those HD channels are absolutely amazing... so incredibly sharp and crystal clear. The regular non-HD and non-digital channels look AWFUL on an LCD TV.

  10. #10
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    How are you guys connecting your boxes to the TV, with a HDMI cable or component video? I know with my TV, I just have to adjust the aspect ratio to zoom/just depending on the broadcast.

    EDIT: Although on HD channels, when they are not broadcasting HD content, I get the two black bars on the side as well.
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  11. #11
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    Yes I now think it is normal to have the black bars with non-HD channels.

    I was using the HDMI cable and then tried the other cables... either way non-HD and non-digital looks terrible. But ony my mother's Tv I could get rid of the gaps even on non-HD channels... on my LCD I cannot. But since pretty much every single channel I will be watching on Direct Tv will be HD (I hope) this problem will no longer exist

  12. #12
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    hmmmm...I'm curious...the last few posts have been washing machines all wrong....glass doors smashing for no reason and now televisions going on the blink.

    frosty has a poltergeist

    owm
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  13. #13
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    I have to admit I had to look up the definition of poltergeist to see what that was

  14. #14
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    invisible spookies but offer a decent explanation to what's happening in your househlold.

    there are good poltergeists and bad ones...but i find if hard to believe you have bad ones...they're most likely good ones.

    maybe you should get an angel healing or something. the archangel michael would sort it out for you.

    either that ..or you're just too hot for your house.

    owm
    Last edited by Outlaw Web Master; 12-31-2007 at 09:53 PM.
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frosty View Post
    Yes I now think it is normal to have the black bars with non-HD channels.

    I was using the HDMI cable and then tried the other cables... either way non-HD and non-digital looks terrible. But ony my mother's Tv I could get rid of the gaps even on non-HD channels... on my LCD I cannot. But since pretty much every single channel I will be watching on Direct Tv will be HD (I hope) this problem will no longer exist
    The difference in your mom's tv and yours is that your mother's tv has a way to upconvert the non hd channels to appear as though they are widescreen without making the people look fat.

    Higher end LCD TVs have this option. They take the regular 4:3 and convert it to 16:9 but they don't just stretch it out. They actually convert it. That's why the people look fine and not stretched out.

    Unless your tv has this ability (which it doesn't sound like it does) you will always have those black bars on non-hd channels, no matter whether you use cable, digital or sattelite

  16. #16
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    But my mother's LCD is a cheapie one she bought at Costco for $800 (I forgot what exact brand I will have to check later today).

    I payed $1300 for my LCD TV... I most certainly do not have a cheapie model. It also has great specs. But I did read through google that quite a few people were complaining about LG's lacking certain settings in their menu. I am starting to wonder if I regret buying an LG. I'm going to test out another brand.

    But since I am getting Direct TV I think MOST channels will be broadcast as HD so I will not have this problem then. But are digital channels also going to be broadcast with black gaps?

    I know that HD is full screen BUT is digital full screen as well???

    PS: When I had analog full screen on this LCD I did notice that people looked fatter and shorter almost... it did not look right. But with the screen shrunk showing black gaps everything appeared normally proportioned. NOTE: It displays analog full screen if I do NOT have the HD box hooked up... but with it hooked up it will no longer display analog full screen... it shows the black gaps on non-HD channels then.

    EDIT: Sorry by re-reading your post I now see that digital will indeed have the black gaps. I got the wrong LCD!!!
    Last edited by Frosty; 01-01-2008 at 01:28 PM.

  17. #17
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    I know that HD is full screen BUT is digital full screen as well???
    It depends on the content shown, not the transmission method. The majority (if not all) content should now be shot in widescreen, if not in HD which by default is widescreen.

    I can only think of a couple of main stream shows which are still either 4:3 or SD. Those being cartoons like The Simpsons, or Scrubs which never went HD.

    Adverts (which is what your example appears to be) may not be shot at the highest quality due to cost.
    Steve

  18. #18
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    Well yes and no on the HD channels. DirecTV just launched their sattelite and for the first time they offer more HD channels than Dish Network. Right now they have I think 85 channels in HD. But keep in mind, many of those are one off networks that you'll never watch.

    If you live in a big city the chances are good that your locals are broadcast in HD. but you need to check that. Local laws restrict satellite providers from broadcasting locals to you that aren't in your area. So just check. Make sure ABC, FOX, NBC and CBS all have local HD there. If so you're in great shape.

    Also, some carriers will not carry locals in HD on one provider but for another they will. It's confusing to understand that. Where do you live? is it a decent sized city? You're probably OK.

    As for price. LG has a wide variety of products. They go from low end to high end. But I dont think 1300 for a 42 is very high end. High end models are upwards of 3 grand Like the best (in my opinion) is the Sony Aquos.

    Check it out, you might want to change brands. LG makes great stuff but now that you know what features you want. Look around and see if another TV for the same price could do it. Check out Vizio. They're a good reasonable price tv and believe it or not they have great feature sets.

    It amazes me that all TV's don't automatically do the upconvert. You'd think they would. But they don't.

    Just check it out. The TV is new so if you change your mind you'll still be in great shape

    one last thing. Your TV will do 1080p but remember, you aren't going to get that from the satellite guys. I know Dish Network only does 1080i and I think it's the same for D*. I'd rather watch a show in 720p than 1080i. Interlaced just doesn't look great. You'll notice it in high action scenes. ghosting will happen.

    ALso, make sure you're installer knows the max setting your tv will do. the satellite converters are defaulted at 480. So tell him to turn it up as high as he can. you can do it in the menu settings but it's easier to just have them do it.
    Last edited by stoly; 01-01-2008 at 01:32 PM.

  19. #19
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    It amazes me that all TV's don't automatically do the upconvert.
    Because people like me wouldn't want it to! 4:3 content should be displayed exactly like that!

    There is no perfect way to get 4:3 full screen on a 16:9 TV. You can either stretch it (not nice), or you can zoom in and chop off the top and bottom, again this is not nice but probably the best option. The 3rd option is to just stretch out the sides of the image only as this tends to not have things like people in it so distortion is less noticable.

    Personally I watch 4:3 content with the black bars down the side to get the image the way it should be. Fortunately 4:3 content is now fairly minimal on the things I watch.
    Steve

  20. #20
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    yeah I see your point. I also watch them in 4:3. but man a lot of people want the upconvert. It's like air conditioning in a car. All of thems hould have it whether or not you use it.

    Now, you're a little off with how upconverting works. It does not stretch the picture. Nor does it simply zoom. It is a feature that's built into the chip that actually uses mathmatical algorithms to make the picture look extremely good in the wider screen. It's pretty impressive to understand how it does it. It still won't look as good as HDTV but it is much much better than simply stretching the pic or zooming in. You do not lose any part of the picture, nor does it make them look fat when it increased the screen. That's why it's called up-converting. It actually does add pixels to each line that are calculated to blend into the scene.

    Basically you can think of it like this. SD tv is shown at 480. Upconverting takes that and converts it to 720 or 1080, whichever you have. So the picture actually fits the screen.
    Last edited by stoly; 01-01-2008 at 01:48 PM.

  21. #21
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    Could you please point me in the direction of some examples as I have not seen a chip which can convert 4:3 to 16:9 without distortion or losing part of the image.

    Certainly neither of my Sony or Panasonic LCD/Plasma screens here can do it. The closest setting I can see is called "Smart" but that is losing part of the image still.
    Steve

  22. #22
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    I'd like to see some example too.

    But since most channels will eventually hopefully in the not too distant future be HD... I really don't mind the black bars in the meantime. But I'm still going to test out another LCD and make sure I got the best one in the lower price range I can possibly find. I'm always paranoid that I got the wrong one and should have gotten the other one instead and vice versa. Drives me crazy.
    Last edited by Frosty; 01-01-2008 at 02:04 PM.

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vortex-Steve View Post
    Could you please point me in the direction of some examples as I have not seen a chip which can convert 4:3 to 16:9 without distortion or losing part of the image.

    Certainly neither of my Sony or Panasonic LCD/Plasma screens here can do it. The closest setting I can see is called "Smart" but that is losing part of the image still.
    Built in up-converting is relatively new. If your TV's are a couple years old it probably wasn't an option then. You use to have to buy a box to do the upconversion.

    You can search google and get some explanations, probably more so if you search dvd upconversion because it's the same technology. But your best bet is to go to a TV store and ask them to show you. They'll have a set that can do it, and they'll explain it to you better than I can. The most I can say is that it essentially ads lines of resolution to the picture and matches pixels using a special built in chip. I don't have examples, but something you see on your PC isn't going to help much anyway. You're better off just going and looking. But if you've never seen it you should check it out. it's very impressive and much much better than simply zooming or stretching the screen.

    Maybe someone more technical here can answer better.

    EDIT: here's an article explaining it for DVD. Same technology.

    http://www.connectedhomemag.com/Visu...rticleID=50124
    Last edited by stoly; 01-01-2008 at 02:19 PM.

  24. #24
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    I got my Sony LCD just a few months ago, the Panasonic Plasma is just a bit older.

    I certainly know about upconversion when used with DVDs (I purchased one of the first Samsung DVD players which do this, and now also have an HD-DVD player which does the same), and indeed when outputting SD as an upconverted image. But what I'm saying is I've never seen something which can change the aspect ratio of an image without distortion or image loss. For example I have Family Guy on DVD, I can stick that in my DVD player and it will upscale it to 720p/1080i but it is still a 4:3 image with black bars added to fulfil the resolution requirement.
    Steve

  25. #25
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    You just need to go to a store and see it. Believe me it's nice. It doesn't give you an equal to hd picture but it's really impressive. I use to think it was a simple zoom too.

    Frosty, I'm quite sure you'll be happy with your new TV. But I know what it's like to be annoyed by the bars on screen. It bugged me too at first, but you get use to it pretty quickly. Congratulations on getting a cool TV!

  26. #26
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    Perhaps you could find me a TV which would do it? I've been searching on google but still can't find anything which would change the aspect ratio of the image. Afterall, if there was something why wouldn't the broadcaster do it themselves to prevent issues like this being raised at all!
    Steve

  27. #27
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    What you're saying makes sense. And I don't understand it. But a friend of mine has a set which does it and I swear it fills the screen.

    Maybe he just had a widescreen show on sd? is that possible?

  28. #28
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    Maybe he just had a widescreen show on sd? is that possible?
    Yes, that is 100% possible. The 16:9 aspect ratio is not limited at all to just HD sources. The majority of UK TV channels are still broadcast in SD, but most of them are still at least widescreen.
    Steve

  29. #29
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    I just found another LCD Tv which I really like but it is only a 720P... is a 1080P really better and does that really make any significant difference???

    I googled this and it seems that it does not, am I correct? Doesn't HD and digital broadcast in actual 1080i format and this means that my TV will have to convert the 720P to 1080I???

    I am confused!

  30. #30
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    1080p is probably only worth getting on TVs above 40". The majority of content on broadcast HDTV is 720p/1080i as 1080p would require too much bandwidth.

    I think in the USA Fox and ABC use 720p and NBC and CBS are 1080i, although that might be different depending on if it is cable or satellite and what content is being shown.

    If you go for BluRay or HD-DVD they are both 1080p so if you have a big TV it would make a difference. You would also need to be sitting quite close to a TV to see much difference between the formats. (5-7ft sort of distance).
    Steve

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