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Old 08-02-2006, 06:02 PM   #46  
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I suspect your Comcast box is set for a 4:3 display, thus the bars top and bottom.
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Old 08-03-2006, 11:33 PM   #47  
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Thanks, I have a Comcast tech coming next week, so hopefully he can re-set it.

I guess I'm getting somewhat off topic of the thread, but wonder if the blurryness could be a function of having it set at 4:3.

As I said, I've used the Zoom selection which eliminates most of the horizontal bar. I take it from my manual that Zoom isn't appropriate for HD broadcasts, but it does give me the full picture.

Basically, some stations look Ok still (as detailed below), but others have recently looked very bad. It has been about 3 weeks since the new Comcast box was put in, while I've noticed the problems for only 3-4 days.

ESPN-HD and Discovery-HD look good. Most of the nature stuff on INHD and INHD2 looks good. Ballgames on INHD2 showed vibrations of the foul line. YES-HD and SNY-HDs baseball were both very poor (shaky). They both seemed Ok a week ago. On local stations, CBS and NBC looked Ok on primetime (CSI and the like). Letterman, Leno and Conan O'Brien shows look terrible, however. There's shakiness in the background and a sense of herky-jerky motion. These used to be excellent broadcasts with OTA.

Anyway, I'm sorry if I strayed to far from the thread topic, but thanks for listenting to my babble.

Last edited by Jkb26mi; 08-03-2006 at 11:39 PM..
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Old 08-04-2006, 10:48 AM   #48  
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Are those "bars" very thin? Not sure if it's the case, but I a certain quantity of the LCD computer monitor market uses a 16:10 AR. A 16:9 not distorted HDTV signal would have very thin bars top and bottom. What is the native resolution of the dell?
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Old 08-04-2006, 02:04 PM   #49  
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As Rbinck said, sounds like the cable box. I also have Comcast with the Motorola 6412 dvr.

Open the menu page by turning off the dvr with the remote. Then press the menu button and it will come up.

You should see a list of "TV type"," YPbPr" and 4:3 override. Select 16:9 in tv type, either 720p or 1080i in ypbpr (experiment to see which looks best) , and on 4:3 override, 480i or 480p to show sd stations normally (bars will show) or "stretch" to entirely fill the screen. (I like seeing full screen even with the "fathead" look) Press the power button to exit and save settings, then power again to turn the box back on.

Hope this helps and just isn't confusing.

Last edited by Jerry1808; 08-04-2006 at 02:09 PM..
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Old 08-04-2006, 04:53 PM   #50  
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Rbinck, Thanks. Sounds like fixing that will be a start.

PaulC, No, the bars are about 2-2.5 inches on both top and bottom.
The native resolution of my Dell is 1366x768 WXGA.


Jerry, Thanks for the directions. I also have a Motorola HD-DVR from Comcast. I'm not used to handling it other than changing channels and setting recordings, but hopefully I'll get there to set 16:9, although I wouldn't give odds Shouldn't the tech have done this?

While I have you all here, let me ask another question. I recently attempted to view local stations OTA with a Phillips antenna that I had used in the past. My current TV is a replacement of an identical Dell, but I had good reception OTA with the old set (audio problems led to the exchange). I wanted to see if my current HD clarity problems would still exist independent of the Comcast box. So, I hooked up the antenna, switched to Digital TV port, and found I could no longer use the remote to get to digital stations. If I pushed 2, I'd get to CBS, but there was no way to get to 2-1. Pushing the "Channel up" thing that I used to use did nothing. Same for all other local stations. So, somehow I have lost functionality of OTA reception of HD on this replacement set. Do you think it's a problem of the TV, or has Comcast done something to turn off this avenue while the DVR is installed? Although I have cable now, I want to retain the ability to go OTA in case I end up moving the TV to a bedroom, or some such thing.

Thanks for your thoughts on this.

Jeff
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Old 08-04-2006, 05:19 PM   #51  
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Jerry, Ok! Followed your directions. This is what I had to begin with:

TV type: 16:9
yPbPr: 480 i (or possibly 480p)
4:3 override off

Well, I switched to yPbPr = 1080i and 4:3 override=480p and everything looks much, much better. I might fool with 720p and
480i later, but this is a big improvement. The horizontal bars are now gone! I wonder why the tech set it up like it was.

Now, I suppose it's too much to expect my problem with OTA reception to go away (see last post). I'd really hate to return a set over something I'm not using.

Thanks again. So far so good!

Jeff
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Old 08-04-2006, 06:53 PM   #52  
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Well, with my new setup, I also learned how to get rid of the giant verical bars. I guess everyone knows how to do this, but I never did before.

With the 4:3 override on 480i, if I set the Dell remote to "Zoom" the bars go away entirely.

With the 4:3 override set to 480p, if I set the Dell remote to "Zoom", very small vertical bars remain, actually an attractive picuture frame type appearance.

Using "Stretch" for the 4:3 override gives something similar to 480p.

Wow! There are so many decisions. 780p vs 1080i, to Zoom or not to Zoom, 4:3 override.. It may take hours just decide how to watch TV every night!
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Old 08-04-2006, 09:21 PM   #53  
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Jeff, glad I could help instead of mess you up further. When the Comcast guy came with mine he didn't explain the setup to me either but maybe because I connected the box myself he thought I didn't need the help.

At the least the tech should have given you a booklet that explains some of this setup procedure.

As to your ota, I didn't quite follow your explanation but assuming your tv has it's own atsc (hd) tuner there should be a coax connector for that specific tuner near the sets jack pack. Then it's just a matter of switching the tv input from the cable box to that antenna input. If it worked with the old tv it should work with this one.

The cable box being connected with either component or hdmi should have no effect on the ota tuner. Using your tv's remote to switch to the proper ant. input and change channels, it should work.

Last edited by Jerry1808; 08-04-2006 at 09:28 PM..
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Old 08-04-2006, 10:37 PM   #54  
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Jerry,

The Comcast manual doesn't have anything about getting into the DVR menu. The installers seem to spend most of their time in demonstrating "On Demand". Comcast even has people calling up afterwards asking if we know about On Demand. Setting up the box correctly doesn't seem to be a priority. Their manual doesn't explain how to get into the box menu. It's simple, unless you don't know how to get there. I don't really care about On Demand.

As to my OTA situation, there is the usual coaxial connector at the ATSC port. If I go to Digital TV, I can see a blurry picture off of the antenna for non-HD channels. These channels never looked good in the past, although HD looked great. Neither the remote nor TV button will now provide any digital stations, however. If i'm on 2-0 and push the button to "Channel up", it just sits there at 2-0. I suspect there's something wrong with the built in tuner. To go through the trouble for an exchange over this issue is hard to deal with at this stage. This would actually be set #4 since December, as I've had two exchanges already. Maybe.

Thanks again,

Jeff
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Old 08-04-2006, 11:51 PM   #55  
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I'd say at this point you're right about the tuner. Geez it's hard to beleve you've gone through that many sets. I think I'd be looking for another brand but as long as it's under warranty I guess it's best to keep swapping them out.
It's a hassle but I'd still give tech support a call just in case you missed something. If it's a defective tuner make em trade sets, there's just no excuse for making tvs like that.
Best of luck
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Old 08-05-2006, 04:58 PM   #56  
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Yeah, I probably will. I've gotten used to the re-packing routine.

The first set was fine from December until June. A speaker stopped working, first giving a raspy sound and then nothing. They exchanged the whole TV instead of just the speaker.

I had the second set for about two weeks. After about two hours of viewing, the screen would go black. I'd have to turn it off and back on to get a picture. It repeated over and over like this.

Now, the apparent problem with the built in tuner.

They make good computers though
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Old 08-05-2006, 06:21 PM   #57  
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I just thought of one more possibility and excuse me if it sounds simplistic, but have you run the "auto channel" setup on that tuner just to see what happens?
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Old 08-07-2006, 03:37 PM   #58  
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To use the digital tuner (or possibly even the analog tuner) you have to connect an antenna and have the HDTV do a scan of all receiveable channels. They WILL work IF you enter the channel directly, but you must do a scan to use the up/down channel feature unless you do that scan. It is somewhere in the setup menus of your HDTV on how to do this. I doubt there is anything wrong with the tuner.

Hope this helps!
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Old 09-27-2006, 04:03 PM   #59  
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So why do I get black bars on some HD programs and not on others? Does it have something to do with the original broadcast or the 480-720 thing.

Sorry, I'm a newbie and looking for help.

Sony KD34XBR970 with Comcast HD servvice/box.
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Old 09-27-2006, 05:23 PM   #60  
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Go to my blog at www.highdefinitionblog.com and read the subjects on the right hand menu. It will get you up to speed quickly. Particularly check out thiese:
HDTV Pictures
DVD Pictures
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