why do avi's and dvd look worse on my MB than old PC?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by benmadrid, Jan 29, 2007.

  1. benmadrid macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2007
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    Madrid
    #1
    Hi,

    I used to use my PC to play avi tv shows on my TV. The PC passed the video to the tv fine, it was as good as watching a DVD - resolution was perfectly suited to the screen size automaticly. Now I have tried connecting my Macbook up to the TV with the s-vid adaptor and the avi video resizes terribly - it comes out with chunky graphics. I am using the VLC player. Also, if I try to watch the avi vids on my macbook at full screen the graphics are terrible as well - fat and chunky - they only look normal when the image fills about a third of the screen.

    So then I tried a DVD on the macbook screen. It looked a lot better, but still not amazing - a bit 'noisy' and occasionaly a tiny bit pixelated. I thought the point of the shiny screen was that this is a top-notch dvd/video watching device? Anyone else have these problems? Any solutions? I just can't understand how the PC did this so much better...
     
  2. 4np macrumors 6502a

    4np

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2005
    Location:
    The Netherlands
    #2
    I frequently use my PowerBook 15" to watch DivX and DVD's on my widescreen TV. Have you changed the settings properly? Mine are set to 1024x768 50Hz (PAL) Millions. Looks fine to me... I have used my desktop PC before and the quality is similar.
     
  3. benmadrid thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 21, 2007
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    Madrid
    #3
    I fiddled with the settings a bit but didn't look right - does anyone know what they should be on a Macbook?
     
  4. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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    Indianapolis
  5. benmadrid thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 21, 2007
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    Madrid
    #5
    old style (not plasma or lcd) widescreen.

    Any advice on how to make AVIs also play full screen and look good on the MB screen itself?
     
  6. Eidorian macrumors Penryn

    Eidorian

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    #6
    "Old style" doesn't tell me much. Do you know its resolution?
     
  7. benmadrid thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 21, 2007
    Location:
    Madrid
    #7
    no.. sorry...

    by the way, I just watched widescreen gladiator on a dvd on the MB screen and the quality was very good, though I noticed that the black letterboxing was a lot less black at the bottom than the top... anyone else notice that?
     
  8. benmadrid thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2007
    Location:
    Madrid
    #8
    Hi,

    I want to clear up a few doubts about watching films/TV episodes with my Macbook, maybe you can help!

    1. I tested a DVD on the Macbook screen last night - Gladiator - using the Apple DVD player. I found the quality of the image to be good, but the film, being widescreen, was letterboxed - a black strip across the top and bottom of the screen. The black strip along the bottom was quite a lot lighter (and certainly not jet black) than the strip along the top. Anyone else notice this?

    2. On my old PC I could pass .avi files to my TV. In fact, when I launched Windows media player, I could watch great quality, full screen .avi tv episodes or films while my wife still worked on the PC - all done automaticly. When I try to watch .avi media on the TV using the Macbook and the s-video adaptor, the image is very blocky. The TV is a big fat 16/9 tube TV (i.e. not plasma or LCD). Anyone know a good set up for this, how to get the avi.s looking good? I have tried with VLC player and various resolutions, but didn't get anywhere.

    3. Finally, .avi files on my MB screen at full screen also look really blocky ...

    Many thanks in advance for any feedback on this.


    I realise that I posted this is the wrong forum, and didn't explain myself too clearly, so have started again in a clearer fashion in the MB forum.

    [Mod note: Threads merged]
     
  9. amnesiak macrumors member

    amnesiak

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2006
    #9
    if the avi is blocky/low quality then there is not much you can do to make it look better..as for the dvd im not sure but maybe the dvd resolution is not the same with the macbook resolution?
     
  10. benmadrid thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 21, 2007
    Location:
    Madrid
    #10
    The DVD looks OK, it's more the fact that the screen seems brighter at the bottom than at the top (something I don't notice when working normally) so that the letterbox black strip along the bottom is much brighter, and not very black, than the one across the top... which is slightly annoying when watching a film. I just wonder if anyone else sees this.
     
  11. amnesiak macrumors member

    amnesiak

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    Oct 13, 2006
    #11
    i think that maybe the screen lights..i had an HP laptop before the bottom screen was a lot brighter than the top part..tho i havent noticed it on my macbook
     
  12. benmadrid thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 21, 2007
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    Madrid
    #12
    ok, I took it to the apple store here in Madrid and they said it was normal, and in fact the macbook they had in store was the same. Amusingly though they said that here in Madrid there was nothing to be done and if I wanted to take it any further, being English, I should drop by the Apple store in London next time I am there... Spanish customer service is ... legendary.

    Anyway, if anyone else has any advice about the watching avi.s on the TV issue, I'd be very grateful.
     
  13. Freyqq macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2004
    #13
    I really can't think of any reason besides that the avi isn't high enough quality to be seen well on a tv. If you want to make sure everything is ok..which i'm sure it is...go download a high quality movie trailer or something and see how that looks.
     
  14. TheSpaz macrumors 604

    TheSpaz

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2005
    #14
    Maybe your PC has a better AVI playback codec than the Mac has. Have you tried looking for an AVI codec to install on the Mac? Maybe the one that VLC comes with isn't very good. I hate AVI video, MPEG4 is the way to go now-a-days, especially H.264.
     
  15. torid110 macrumors regular

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    Jan 22, 2006
    Location:
    Jersey City, NJ
    #15
    Are you connecting your PC using S-Video also ?
     
  16. benmadrid thread starter macrumors member

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    Jan 21, 2007
    Location:
    Madrid
    #16
    Yes, though the PC was connected using a 7 pin adaptor (into the single jack).
     

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