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panasonic plasma 42in 720p stretch help?

Old 02-16-09, 08:08 PM
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panasonic plasma 42in 720p stretch help?


I just got a panasonic 720p 42in plasma. I'm not really adept at this home theater stuff, but thought someone here might be able to help. If it helps to know my viewing habits, I only watch dvds on it. I don't have cable or any other version of tv reception. It is only used for watching movies and tv on dvd. I'd say I watch maybe 2 movies a week.

Full frame films are stretched to fill the screen so that imaged seem smushed vertically. When I change viewing modes to 4:3 much of the image gets cut off with the grey bars on the sides.

So, 1) how do i get the whole image to appear, but un-smushed? 2) can i change the side bars to black instead of grey?, and finally, 3) are there any issues I need to be aware of or precautions I need to take in the first few hours of viewing to avoid things like burn in, etc.?

Thanks in advance for your help!
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Old 02-16-09, 11:35 PM
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Re: panasonic plasma 42in 720p stretch help?

1. Go into the DVD player's menu, not the TV's. Change the "TV Aspect Ratio" (or similar) setting from 4:3 to 16:9. That should help, maybe fix it.

2. Grey/black bars can come from either the player or the TV, depending on your settings and equipment. You'll have to check both if you want to change the color. And not all machines allow you to change the color.

3. Burn-in shouldn't be a problem. If you want to be extra careful the first 100 hours, go ahead. Watch many different aspect ratios, or watch something that fills the screen with no bars. Leave the bars grey, change them to black after the 100 hours.
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Old 02-17-09, 07:58 AM
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Re: panasonic plasma 42in 720p stretch help?

Your Panasonic allows you to change the gray bars to black. I don't know where it is in the menu, but it is there, you just have to look.

Panasonic has a mode that stretched the image but does dome ratio fix that works pretty well. The center remains the same and the stretched image is more on the left and right. It may be called "Just" or "fill" or something like that. Whatever it is, it is not "zoom".

Break in your plasma. Especially if you watch a lot with bars on the right and left. First, go into the picture settings and make sure everything is set at 0 or right in the middle. Take any dvd you own that is in the TVs aspect ratio, or zoom it to fill the screen, and run it day and night for 4 days. Your DVD player should have some type of setting for repeat or loop.

after the 100 hours are done, go to www.tweaktv.com, put in your model number and calibrate it to their settings. You may have to tweak it beyond that but it is a good baseline.

lastly RTFM (Read the Fucking Manual)

Last edited by SoSpacey; 02-17-09 at 08:00 AM.
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Old 02-26-09, 09:20 PM
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Re: panasonic plasma 42in 720p stretch help?

Originally Posted by wattsup32 View Post
Full frame films are stretched to fill the screen so that imaged seem smushed vertically. When I change viewing modes to 4:3 much of the image gets cut off with the grey bars on the sides.
"Full Frame" films are in the 4:3 aspect ratio. Your TV is 16:9 HD. In order to fit a 4:3 image within a 16:9 frame, your TV has to do one of 3 things:

1) Stretch the image horizontally to fill the 16:9 TV.
2) Zoom in on the image to fill the 16:9 TV.
3) Show the full 4:3 image, but with blank space on the sides.

With the last option, you see the full image, with no stretching, but with grey bars. The image is not cut off, your TV is just wider than the image. This is called "pillarboxing," and it is normal for viewing 4:3 material on a WS TV, just as letterboxing was normal for viewing WS material on a 4:3 TV (not that you don't get letterboxing on a WS TV as well, mind you).
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Old 05-08-09, 10:31 PM
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Re: panasonic plasma 42in 720p stretch help?

I know exactly what the original poster is experiencing, and also haven't figured out a way to fix it. I have a Denon DVD player connected to a Panasonic HD TV. Both are set to 16:9. When I play the discs of The Wire, which are 4:3, it stretches the 4:3 to fill the screen. If I rotate through the TV menus, I can get the pillarboxing, but it does cut off the image. I've gone through all the menus looking for options that seem relevant, but haven't found anything.

On my Oppo DVD player connected to another Panasonic HD TV through an Onkyo receiver, it works fine and properly pillarboxes to display the 4:3 image.
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Old 05-09-09, 04:31 AM
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Re: panasonic plasma 42in 720p stretch help?

In order to play 4:3 standard DVDs, try setting your player to output at 480p.

Chances are, it's sending out at 720p or 1080p and your television can only "stretch" at those resolutions. If you're watching standard 4:3 material, use the "sidebar" or "standard" mode on your television, which should be available at the 480p resolution. If you're watching 4:3 letterboxed material (ie, non-anamorphic), then use the "zoom" mode to fill your screen horizontally.
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