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Dad's Army wide screen for modern TVs


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Old 20-07-2013, 19:49
MikeySaint859
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Just started on BBC2.

How difficult is it - or easy - to convert old colour recordings like this into splendid, modern wide screen? It looks excellent.

I've just ordered a load of DVDs of the Jon Pertwee Dr Whos and they are uniformally square pictures in the centre of the screen leaving much of the screen black and uninvolved.

Have I jumped the gun getting old, cheap 1970s series on DVD, or are many to be left as they were originally intended, no matter how dated they look?
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Old 20-07-2013, 20:00
James2001
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I'm not sure how you expect them to get extra picture on the sides that doesn't exist. The only way to "make" it widescreen is to either stretch the picture or zoom into it- neither of which are good solutions. It was made in 4:3, you can't magic extra picture out of thin air, and the only solutions are bodges that damage the original footage.
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Old 20-07-2013, 20:04
MikeySaint859
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I'm not sure how you expect them to get extra picture on the sides that doesn't exist. The only way to "make" it widescreen is to either stretch the picture or zoom into it- neither of which are good solutions. It was made in 4:3, you can't magic extra picture out of thin air, and the only solutions are bodges that damage the original footage.
Have you actually read my post, or did you wade right in without bothering? I'm watching Dad's Army from the 1970s now in wide screen and it looks fine. Dr Who from the same period ought to look fine too.

Who said anything about creating areas that don't exist? Obviously it takes panning and scanning in post production.
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Old 20-07-2013, 20:40
lundavra
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Have you actually read my post, or did you wade right in without bothering? I'm watching Dad's Army from the 1970s now in wide screen and it looks fine. Dr Who from the same period ought to look fine too.

Who said anything about creating areas that don't exist? Obviously it takes panning and scanning in post production.
The only way that it can be made wide screen is by stretching or cropping. They can pan and zoom but that is still cropping.

I can remember when wider screen TV sets started to appear in the shop, I was trying to explain to someone how terrible they looked with stretched pictures but could not convince them!
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Old 20-07-2013, 20:44
derek500
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I'm watching Dad's Army from the 1970s now in wide screen and it looks fine.
Tonight's broadcast was 4:3. You're either zooming in or stretching.
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Old 20-07-2013, 21:00
Billy_Value
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imo all square pictured programmes should be redone in wide-screen
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Old 20-07-2013, 21:20
MikeySaint859
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The only way that it can be made wide screen is by stretching or cropping. They can pan and zoom but that is still cropping.

I can remember when wider screen TV sets started to appear in the shop, I was trying to explain to someone how terrible they looked with stretched pictures but could not convince them!
It's obviously a matter of taste. But providing "wide screen", albeit ersatz, wouldn't "ruin" the original; it would just provide choice. Personally, I'd welcome that choice. It would be fantastic to have the option to fill my screen with Jon Pertwee, Tom Baker and many more 1970s idols. The original print need never be touched.
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Old 20-07-2013, 21:21
Tassium
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I saw a bit of Dads Army tonight and it was clearly in 4:3 ("square pictures")

It was stretched to 16:9 on my TV and looked anything but fine.


Presumably the OP had a crop 'n zoom mode going on? I wouldn't call that a good look usually...
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Old 20-07-2013, 21:23
Tassium
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It's obviously a matter of taste. But providing "wide screen", albeit ersatz, wouldn't "ruin" the original; it would just provide choice. Personally, I'd welcome that choice. It would be fantastic to have the option to fill my screen with Jon Pertwee, Tom Baker and many more 1970s idols. The original print need never be touched.
Your TV can already do this, probably.

In the picture settings menu most likely.

"Zoom 4:3 to Wide" or something like that.


EDIT: Obviously it's already set to do this since you watched Dads Army in this mode.
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Old 20-07-2013, 21:25
MikeySaint859
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Tonight's broadcast was 4:3. You're either zooming in or stretching.
That's interesting, actually, and perhaps suggests that I no longer can tell the difference between what my TV automatically gives me and what I actually want. To be honest, from my perspective at least, it looked good. If Mainwaring and Wilson and co. were unnaturally stretched to fit my TV they neither looked it, or my subconscious mind didn't care.
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Old 20-07-2013, 21:34
MikeySaint859
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Your TV can already do this, probably.

In the picture settings menu most likely.

"Zoom 4:3 to Wide" or something like that.


EDIT: Obviously it's already set to do this since you watched Dads Army in this mode.
Many thanks to yourself and other helpful DS users, above.

Looks like my telly did all the work itself, as you have said.

Seriously, I didn't see the "fitting" as unnatural or unpleasant in any way.

Also, I put my Dr Who DVDs straight into my PC disc drawer and watch them on my big PC monitor. So, now I'm going to instead use the DVD player under my telly, and this will instead give me the result I wanted all along, no doubt...

Bah. Thanks to everyone who replied to my original post; I will now go away and enjoy (no doubt) what I complained wasn't available!
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Old 20-07-2013, 21:45
tothegrand
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They could do it but you would loose parts of the picture.
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Old 20-07-2013, 21:52
MikeySaint859
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Unfortunately, my TV can alter aspect ratios, but my DVD player, or DVD via TV, sticks to 16:9 resolution. Pah, the Doctor would sort this out!
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Old 20-07-2013, 22:46
cornishpasty1
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Unfortunately, my TV can alter aspect ratios, but my DVD player, or DVD via TV, sticks to 16:9 resolution.
No it doesn't.
If you set your dvd player to 16:9 it will only display 16:9 flagged images as 16:9.
4:3 images like Dr Who are not flagged as 16:9 so if you are viewing them in that format your tv is stretching or zooming them.
To ensure your tv is set correctly you should switch from the episodes themselves , which are in 4:3 to the documentaries which are 16:9 .
The image should change from 4:3 to widescreen . If it doesn't your tv is set to change the image so you'll either be viewing the episodes distorted or with part of the picture chopped off.

Thankfully in most cases the producers of these programmes release them as they should be which is as they were broadcast then leave people who want to distort them to do it with their tv while the rest can watch them properly as they were made.

IN their wisdom ITV released Thunderbirds on Bluray cropped to 16:9 and received much criticism .
Fortunately series such as Star Trek TOS , Star Trek TNG , Space 1999 , The Persuaders .The Sweeney ,The Prisoner and more were all released correctly and have received nothing but praise for it .
Next years Bluray of The Professionals is also 4:3
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Old 20-07-2013, 23:37
lundavra
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It's obviously a matter of taste. But providing "wide screen", albeit ersatz, wouldn't "ruin" the original; it would just provide choice. Personally, I'd welcome that choice. It would be fantastic to have the option to fill my screen with Jon Pertwee, Tom Baker and many more 1970s idols. The original print need never be touched.
If you wanted it stretched then can't you just select that on your TV set.

Many people would object to it being stretched or cropped. Dad's Army in 4x3 is still many times better than any modern comedy however wide and HD it was produced.
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Old 20-07-2013, 23:46
cornishpasty1
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If you wanted it stretched then can't you just select that on your TV set.

Many people would object to it being stretched or cropped. Dad's Army in 4x3 is still many times better than any modern comedy however wide and HD it was produced.
It depends .
I've seen some Toshiba tv's where its not possible to change the ratio of any devices connected via HDMI which makes for very poor pictures if viewing a non anamorphic widescreen dvd
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Old 21-07-2013, 08:20
Glenn
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Dad's Army in 4x3 is still many times better than any modern comedy however wide and HD it was produced.
You are spot on there!
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Old 21-07-2013, 08:41
mossy2103
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It's obviously a matter of taste. But providing "wide screen", albeit ersatz, wouldn't "ruin" the original; it would just provide choice. Personally, I'd welcome that choice. It would be fantastic to have the option to fill my screen with Jon Pertwee, Tom Baker and many more 1970s idols. The original print need never be touched.
You have that already - the broadcast is 4:3 inside a 16:9 frame, and your TV will have zoom or stretch controls that will allow you to change the resulting picture to taste.

The original is left untouched,

The downside is that if the picture is stretched, people will appear short & fat, whilst if it is zoomed you will lose the top & bottom of the picture. Both options will also result in a lower resolution image.
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Old 21-07-2013, 09:09
MikeySaint859
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If you wanted it stretched then can't you just select that on your TV set.

Many people would object to it being stretched or cropped. Dad's Army in 4x3 is still many times better than any modern comedy however wide and HD it was produced.
I have the TV set to "automatic", so it pretty much sets everything broadcast to wide screen. DVDs, on the other hand, are set in stone. If they come in 4:3 they remain in 4:3 and are unalterable with my TV remote.


You have that already - the broadcast is 4:3 inside a 16:9 frame, and your TV will have zoom or stretch controls that will allow you to change the resulting picture to taste.

The original is left untouched,

The downside is that if the picture is stretched, people will appear short & fat, whilst if it is zoomed you will lose the top & bottom of the picture. Both options will also result in a lower resolution image.
My conclusion is that I've sacrificed the top and bottom of the picture, as no one appears short and fat. Nothing of note appears to be sacrificed, however. There's never an occasion when I'm blatantly missing something I was meant to see.
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Old 21-07-2013, 10:53
lundavra
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I have the TV set to "automatic", so it pretty much sets everything broadcast to wide screen. DVDs, on the other hand, are set in stone. If they come in 4:3 they remain in 4:3 and are unalterable with my TV remote.

My conclusion is that I've sacrificed the top and bottom of the picture, as no one appears short and fat. Nothing of note appears to be sacrificed, however. There's never an occasion when I'm blatantly missing something I was meant to see.
Mine is on Automatic and usually adjusts to the correct aspect ration though it does occasionally get it wrong so I have to manually set to 4x3 or whatever.

'Automatic' on my TV means that the aspect ratio is set to the correct setting for the programme, not that it stretches / crops to fit the screen.
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Old 21-07-2013, 13:44
mr_wonderful
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This must be a wind up as no one could be quite that daft.
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Old 21-07-2013, 14:19
lundavra
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This must be a wind up as no one could be quite that daft.
I mentioned that when wide screen TVs started to appear, I had great difficulty persuading some friends that they were just stretching and not somehow magically finding more of the picture. I can remember standing in a shop in front of two TV sets and trying to pointing out two sets showing the same picture but one stretched.

I think they used to do tricks with non-linear stretching so people in the middle of the screen did not look as fat.
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Old 21-07-2013, 23:41
mark27b
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...no one appears short and fat.
Are you sure? I seem to recall Arthur Lowe was short and rotund.

If he isn't on your Tv you have stretched the 4:3 picture somewhat.
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Old 22-07-2013, 07:51
Vetinari
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I get the impression that the better systems mix a little horizontal stretching with a little vertical cropping.

Most people can actually adjust for a little distortion of this type in much the same way as everyone can adjust to a pretty significant colour cast.

I watch many DVD's that are 4:3 using VLC on a 16:9 TV and almost never notice a thing.
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Old 22-07-2013, 07:59
anotherlongers
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Personally I prefer to watch programmes how they were intended. There's nothing worse than watching a 4:3 programme that's been cut to suit 16:9 and when a bird takes her top off you can't see anything except her eyes.

Shockingly bad. TV should leave things as they were filmed. Art galleries wouldn't chop the top and bottom off the Mona Lisa to make it fit an oblong frame so why should TV companies?
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