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What type of dvd player would work best for a tv that is already a widescreen?

I am looking to buy a dvd player for my parents and they purchase d a wide screen tv so when you play dvds or watch tv it tends to stretch out the picture. Is there a dvd player that takes this into account or does it matter?

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3 Responses to “What type of dvd player would work best for a tv that is already a widescreen?”

  1. agb90spruce said :

    There is a common misperception that the screen should be full. Not so. While it is nice when it happens only material at the same aspect aratio (width to height ratio) as the screen you are watching will fill the screen … everything else will have black bars on the top and bottom or the sides (unless the image is stretched or zoomed … but that distorts or throws away some of the picture).

    The director of a film chooses the aspect ratio, and it can vary from 1.33:1 to over 2.7:1 in extreme wideangle films. The most common are 1.78:1 (so called “16:9” — the aspect ratio of “widescreen” TVs), 1.85:1 and 2.35:1, but others exist too.

    See the image at the link to see how these aspect ratios relate on a constant width screen.

    TVs often have a control that allows images to be zoomed or stretched to fit the screen … as stated above this is distortion and most people, after playing with the different settings for a while, return to a straight undistorted image setting.

    A widescreen TV will “fit” more programming (particularly if they subscribe to HD programming, which is in widescreen (16:9) format) than their old style TV (Which was 4:3 or 1.33:1 format) BUT they will still see black bars on some movies, particularly on DVD (Note: TV broadcast stations sometimes crop widescreen movies to “fit” the 16:9 screen … and you can’t control this, but the same movie on DVD might have bars).

    So … no, you don’t need to buy a different DVD player for widescreen since the basic aspect ratio is determined by the movie, not the player. Maybe the above explanation will help you explain it to your parents.

    If buying a DVD player for a 720p or 1080p HDTV, consider a $100-$125 (less expensive ones won’t provide any benefit) “upscaling DVD player” (with a HDMI connector) or if you want to go full out, consider the Venture HD DVD player from Walmart ($200) … which is really a Toshiba HD-A3 player (a good upscaler and it plays HD DVDs).

    Hope this helps.

  2. GH said :

    Well the guy before me gave a well detailed, but long explanation. Basicly if your parents want to get the best out of their tv get a upconverting dvd player. I would assume that the tv is HD so an upconverting player would upscale the regular 480 lines to 720 or 1080 lines screen resolution giving a decent improvement on picture quality. If their movies that they currently own are “full-screen” movies then the picture will be stretched out and if there are black or grey bars on the left and right side there are settings on the tv to stretch it out.

    Make sure you tell them to buy only wide screen movies.

  3. mike1084 said :

    Heres a link to a great up-converting DVD player that doesn’t cost a fortune, and makes your SD DVD look great and actually gives you all the cables you need with the purchase.


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