[mythtv-users] What's the point of MythTV HD?

Richard Woelk richardwoelk at yahoo.ca
Thu Jan 3 01:15:56 UTC 2008

jmk wrote:
> Hi George / MythTV Users,
> On Mon, 2007-12-03 at 22:18 -0600, George Mari wrote:
>> David Linville wrote:
> <snip>
>> The best resolution you can get this way is wide-screen 480i.  This is 
>> the same way anamorphic DVD content works.  You  takes a 16:9 content 
>> stream, send it out your STB S-Video output, it gets squished 
>> horizontally to record at 720x480 pixels (4:3 aspect ratio) by analog 
>> tuner/encoder card, and stretched back out horizontally by MythTV to 
>> it's proper aspect ratio.  The only difference between this and 
>> anamorphic DVD is that DVD content is usually 480p (progressive) versus 
>> 480i (interlaced).
>> I just researched all this a few weeks ago when I upgraded from SD 
>> DirecTV to HD DirecTV.  The High-def DirecTV set top boxes (Dish too, 
>> probably cable boxes also) let you set the format of the signal being 
>> sent out any of it's outputs.  You tell it whether you have a 4:3 or 
>> 16:9 TV, and you tell it how it should display programs that don't match 
>> the aspect ratio of your TV - letter box, pillar box, squished 
>> horizontally, etc.  You can even cycle through the formats with a button 
>> on your remote.
>> I get better results with Widescreen 480i than I did stretching 4:3 
>> programs to fit my 16:9 TV.  I see fewer artifacts, and just better 
>> overall quality.  It's not HD, but it's better than 4:3 SD, at least to 
>> my eyes.  Part of that could be that the DirecTV HD signal is less 
>> overcompressed than the SD signal was, but whatever.
> A few quick, hopefully not too dumb, questions about this approach...
> I currently have two standard DirecTV STBs which are connected via
> s-video to ivtv cards. My main MythTV host is connected to a HD TV.
> Unfortunately, one of my STBs is dying and I'm told by DirecTV it'll
> cost $69 to replace. It appears that for an additional $30 I can get a
> HD STB, so I am considering going that route.
> When the HD STB is configured to display 16:9, does Myth automatically
> detect this and display full screen? Currently, it appears that 16:9
> content is being displayed in a 4:3 window. I can manually zoom/scale,
> but I find this annoying and I'm wondering if this approach gets around
> that problem.
> Are there extra costs that I'm missing with this option? It looks like
> it'll cost an extra $10/month for HD service. I'm assuming you felt the
> picture improvement of capturing HD as SD was worth that. 
> If I get a new HD dish and HD STB, can I continue to use my working
> non-HD STB? Just wondering if I have to replace both STBs, since the
> second one isn't used all that often. 
> Thanks!
> Joe
    I do this with my HD satellite receiver. Mythtv doesn't 
automatically detect the 16:9 content, you have to set that up in your 
record profile.
I changed my "high quality" profile to be widescreen, which is 
anamorphic widescreen,  while I left "default" as 4:3

When I record from an HD channel, I use the high-quality profile, and 
from SD, I use default.



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