Aspect Ratio With Handbrake. Please help

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by soquickwitit, Jun 8, 2008.

  1. macrumors member

    I'm converting some old disney dvd movies for the kids, for the apple tv. and They come out with black bars on each side of the screen? i have a widescreen hd tv. So basically what i'm asking is how do i get it full screen? I appreciate it, thx
  2. macrumors 6502a


    Since you say they are old Disney movies, they are probably in 4:3 rather than 16:9 which is what a widescreen TV is. There is no way to get rid of those black bars without stretching the picture, and it would be unwatchable if you did that.
  3. macrumors 68000


    Whether to stretch a 4:3 movie, such as your old Disney movies, to fill a 16:9 screen is a controversial issue. Some viewers hate stretching because it does introduce a level of distortion, although it isn’t bad enough to make the picture “unwatchable,” at least in my humble opinion. I’ve done it both ways while watching TV, although I have not changed the aspect ratio of any of the 4:3 movies I have converted to MP4 files in Handbrake. Nevertheless, I’m pretty sure that you can do it with Handbrake. Try getting into the Picture Settings on the Video page and see what you can see.
  4. macrumors 68020

    frankly I would encode it in its proper resolution in HB, so your source file isn't all hosed up. Then if you really want to watch it all distorted so it fill up your tv, use the tv's modes to fill the screen (almost all hd lcd/plasma televisions have this feature), that way if you don't like watching movies like your looking in a fat mirror in the funhouse at the circus, you can go back to watching the video in its proper resolution.
  5. macrumors 68000


    I concur, if you have a TV that can change aspect ratio while you are watching something on Apple TV. Unfortunately, my 5 hear old HDTV won’t do it, despite the Apple TV being connected to it via a component connection, rather than HDMI.
  6. macrumors 68020

    Hmm, that sucks. Personally I am still in favor of proper source resolution, but I guess you can go either way in that case.
  7. macrumors 6502

    Another thing you can do is crop the source image so that it is in 16:9 format. I happened to have done that this weekend with the Star Wars trilogy. The result is actually very good. And you don't get any of the squeezed / stretch effect. What I did was:
    1. Choose Picture Settings
    2. Select Custom Cropping
    3. Removed 30 Pixels from top and 90 from bottom.
    (Step 3 took a lot of experimentation to figure out which part of the scenes was worth losing.)

    The downside to this approach is that you are lossing some of the top and bottom of scenes (which may or may not bother you) and you will get some upscaling/resampling.

    Nevertheless, my result was quite good .. much better than watching in 4:3 or watching stretched, IMO.
  8. macrumors 6502

    Instead of butchering the video image you could also see if the movie you want is available for sale on the iTunes store in the correct aspect ratio.

    However, keep in mind that depending on when the film was produced it may not be in widescreen. For example movies produced before about 1950 are all going to be in what's called "academy ratio" or "fullscreen" because before that date there were no widescreen movies.


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