Monday, May 05, 2008

Stretch-O-Vision Blows

Ready for today's lesson, class?

Time-Warner in NYC recently granted us a crop of new HD channels, including The Food Network HD and CNN HD.

HD technology is fairly new and it'll be a while before all shows are actually shot in HD. When an HD version of a channel arrives, it usually incorporates both newer HD content and older Standard-Def content.

When an HD channel broadcasts an SD program, they can either show it in OAR (Original Aspect Ratio) or they can stretch it out to fill the width of the HD screen...

Like TNT HD, The Food Network HD features the hateful STRETCH-O-VISION.

Some folks aren't bothered by it.

I loathe it.

I get it. There are people who have HDTVs who don't understand why there should be any pictures that *don't* fill out to the sides of the screens. They can't be bothered to understand the concept of "aspect ratios".

By broadcasting in Stretch-O-Vision, The Food Network is saying, "Our viewers are dumb."

I personally think that broadcasting distorted video is worse than pan-and-scan. At least the imagery in pan-and-scan video isn't fucking deformed.

CBS, NBC, ABC, FOX, CNN... their HD channels broadcast SD programming in OAR, *not* distorted. If it's good enough for the networks, I don't see why a basic cable channel like The Food Network has to dumb down their feed.


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