ATV2: Custom Anamorphic Revisited

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by philipk, Nov 4, 2010.

  1. philipk macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2008
    #1
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    I have used the search and haven't found answer to my question.

    I have discovered that when you use custom Anamorphic in Handbrake you will get a true ~1700 x 720 from a Blu-Ray source. The extra horizontal pixels are real so I don't questioned that custom Anamorphic gives a higher resolution.

    Here is my question.

    Can ATV2 use that extra horizontal resolution?

    My guess is no. I think the max horizontal that will be sent to the monitor is 1280 so it is a waste of space and processor time.

    Am I right?
     
  2. NightStorm macrumors 68000

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    Jan 26, 2006
    Location:
    Whitehouse, OH
    #2
    Correct; the AppleTV v2 would need a 1080p output mode like the AppleTV v1 to really take advantage of this.

    That said, it doesn't hurt (although file sizes are larger). I'm using custom anamorphic to help future proof encodes and hoping that Apple updates the ATVv2 to at least have a native 1080p output mode.
     
  3. philipk thread starter macrumors 6502

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    Thanks!

    I just got my Blu-Ray drive yesterday and have two rips using custom. At home I am encoding one movie with none and 1280 width. I will compare them tonight.

    Tough call between space and time and future proof. I am leaning to using none because if a future ATV is native 1080p I will encode at full 1080.

    PS
    I only rip discs that I own.
     
  4. newagemac macrumors 68020

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    #4
    Even if it doesn't take advantage of the horizontal, wouldn't the increased vertical to a full 720 make a difference?
     
  5. tommylotto macrumors regular

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    Jan 7, 2004
    #5
    Actually, with the custom anamorphic setting, the 1700 horizontal resolution is not real. It is actually 1280, but imagine the pixels as rectangles instead of squares to preserve the original aspect ratio. So there is no additional horizontal resolution to take advantage of. Basically, you are scaling the 1280 pixels up to the imaginary 1700. Since the new AppleTV is limited to 720p output, it needs to scale it back down to 1280 to output at 720p (1280x720p).

    I also think that the new AppleTV cannot take advantage of the additional vertical resolution, which is very real. It is my understanding that the new AppleTV outputs at 1280x720p, but with a widescreen film, that ends up being approximately 1280x544p with black bars on the top and bottom. So, no matter what the widescreen vertical resolution is on your file, the new AppleTV needs to scale it down to fit into a 720p format before it sends it to the TV -- 720p will become approximately 544p.

    This is one area where the old AppleTV is actually superior to the new one. The old AppleTV can output 1080p and take advantage of that additional vertical resolution. I still use two old AppleTV and have one new one. So, I still encode all my BluRays at 1280x720 with custom anamorphic. They play great on both, and look better on the computer and on the old AppleTV. The file size could be a bit smaller for the new AppleTV, but I suspect that Apple might open up 1080p output with an update just like they did with the old AppleTV.
     

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