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Zoom only stretches the screen and distorts the picture

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Regular Contributor

Zoom only stretches the screen and distorts the picture

Some of the premium channels I pay for only transmit in a reduced screen size - why is that?

 

Anyway, I go to settings to zoom the picture to full size and the only choice is "Full" which is not "Full", but "Stretch".

 

Why is there no settings choice for normal "Full" zoom?

 

Thanks

Accepted Solution

Re: Zoom only stretches the screen and distorts the picture


@truerock2 wrote:

ComcastElla,

 

Thanks for following up.

 

I installed my new 4k box a few minutes ago.  Everything is working well.

 

As to the small videos on some channels:

I now understand that the smallish video on some channels like ShowtimeBeyond are displayed on my TV in 3840x2160 60Hz resolution - the same as all of the other Comcast channels from my Comcast 4K cable box.  The actual content is the old 640x480 content from the pre-High Definition days of old.  As we all know, Comcast still has some of that around.  When Comcast transmits new 16:9 content in the old 4:3 channels it comes out as a small-ish video.

 

Now that I understand what I am dealing with - I plan to study this more.  

 

One of the issues is that the actual Comcast display of the small-video is 3840x2160 with large black-bars and the Samsung TV can't understand why someone would want to zoom a 3840x2160 video and it greys-out the Samsung Zoom options - I guess assuming that it is being helpful in not providing what it thinks would be an illogical thing to do.

 

My first take is this is a design problem primarily with the Comcast software - although Samsung could probably help with some resesign of its software also.

 

This normally wouldn't have been a problem 15 years ago when everyone was on top of handling the co-existance of 4:3 and 16:9 - but, I'm thinking there are software designers who have forgotten all about (or are so young they have never experienced) those days long ago... eventhough Comcast is still using the old/obsolete 4:3 technology.  Fifteen years ago most TV remotes had a dedicated "Zoom" button - that is not the case today.

 


I suggest you read through the 150+ page Samsung manual and learn how to use your new Samsung UHD tv. It is unfortunate that Comcast down-graded almost all Premium channels to 480p (sd). I don't get any Premium channels from them. Your best option is to set your Samsung tv to 4:3 mode when watching any of those channels. You will have black bars on both sides but there is no way for a UHD television to synthesize 95%+ pixels to fill the whole screen. The resulting picture is still better than watching on an older tv.

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Service Expert

Re: Zoom only stretches the screen and distorts the picture

What is the screen resolution of your TV?  What is the model of your X1 box?  What screen resolution is set in the X1 box?




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Problem Solver

Re: Zoom only stretches the screen and distorts the picture


@truerock2 wrote:

Some of the premium channels I pay for only transmit in a reduced screen size - why is that?

 

Anyway, I go to settings to zoom the picture to full size and the only choice is "Full" which is not "Full", but "Stretch".

 

Why is there no settings choice for normal "Full" zoom?

 

Thanks


What channel number are you watching? A SD channel would be only 480p and zooming to fit screen could do that. Are you using cable remote to change picture aspect? Leave it at normal and use the tv remote to change aspect. What happens if you do that?

 

By "premium" channels do you mean: HBO, etc.? Currently you might find only 1 HBO channel as HD (only 720p). Others are only SD (480p) now. The same for other premium channels found on Comcast.

Regular Contributor

Re: Zoom only stretches the screen and distorts the picture

Small Screen v3.jpg

Regular Contributor

Re: Zoom only stretches the screen and distorts the picture

<Removed. Picture contains private info>

Regular Contributor

Re: Zoom only stretches the screen and distorts the picture

This is "Full Mode" which is actually "Stretch Mode":

 

stretched screen v2.jpg

Regular Contributor

Re: Zoom only stretches the screen and distorts the picture

The TV is a Samsung UN49KS8000FXZA (a.k.a. KS8000) UltraHD 4K "Quantum Dot"

The same thing happens on the 1080p TVs we own

This is the "Settings" screen where you select "Zoom: Full" (which is actually "Zoom: Stretch")

settings v2.jpg

Official Employee

Re: Zoom only stretches the screen and distorts the picture

Hi, truerock2 - Have you tried to change the picture aspect on your TV, not on the cable box? 


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Regular Contributor

Re: Zoom only stretches the screen and distorts the picture

ComcastElla,

 

Yes... one of the first things I tried...  changing the settings for the Samsung TV.  

But, the Samsung TV thinks the picture is already at Maximum Zoom - because...

The Comcast video is a  1080X1920 picture with black bars all around the edges.

It just seems very odd that Comcast does this - I can't understand the purpose.

Does it somehow save more than an irrelevant amount of bandwidth?

 

 

Samsung settings 00.jpg

I've tried every possible combination of Samsung TV settings.

 

Regular Contributor

Re: Zoom only stretches the screen and distorts the picture

Notice how the "closed caption" is down in the bottom black-bar showing how it is a 1920x1080 video that is composed of a picture surrounded by large black bars.

Also, note how the "Showtime Beyond" logo is slightly in the black-bar area (lower right corner).

 

 

Samsung settings 01 small.jpg

Regular Contributor

Re: Zoom only stretches the screen and distorts the picture

ComcastElla,

 

As you know, I'm receiving a new DVR box tomorrow - so, maybe this will not be a relevant question for me - after I upgrade.

I'll post any new info on this thread.

 

Thanks

Official Employee

Re: Zoom only stretches the screen and distorts the picture

@truerock2 - Thank you for letting me know! The picture should fit the whole screen. It could be a problem with the cable box or with the HDMI cable. Please let me know if you get the same issue with the new DVR. 


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Regular Contributor

Re: Zoom only stretches the screen and distorts the picture

ComcastElla,

 

Thanks for following up.

 

I installed my new 4k box a few minutes ago.  Everything is working well.

 

As to the small videos on some channels:

I now understand that the smallish video on some channels like ShowtimeBeyond are displayed on my TV in 3840x2160 60Hz resolution - the same as all of the other Comcast channels from my Comcast 4K cable box.  The actual content is the old 640x480 content from the pre-High Definition days of old.  As we all know, Comcast still has some of that around.  When Comcast transmits new 16:9 content in the old 4:3 channels it comes out as a small-ish video.

 

Now that I understand what I am dealing with - I plan to study this more.  

 

One of the issues is that the actual Comcast display of the small-video is 3840x2160 with large black-bars and the Samsung TV can't understand why someone would want to zoom a 3840x2160 video and it greys-out the Samsung Zoom options - I guess assuming that it is being helpful in not providing what it thinks would be an illogical thing to do.

 

My first take is this is a design problem primarily with the Comcast software - although Samsung could probably help with some resesign of its software also.

 

This normally wouldn't have been a problem 15 years ago when everyone was on top of handling the co-existance of 4:3 and 16:9 - but, I'm thinking there are software designers who have forgotten all about (or are so young they have never experienced) those days long ago... eventhough Comcast is still using the old/obsolete 4:3 technology.  Fifteen years ago most TV remotes had a dedicated "Zoom" button - that is not the case today.

 

Problem Solver

Re: Zoom only stretches the screen and distorts the picture


@truerock2 wrote:

ComcastElla,

 

Thanks for following up.

 

I installed my new 4k box a few minutes ago.  Everything is working well.

 

As to the small videos on some channels:

I now understand that the smallish video on some channels like ShowtimeBeyond are displayed on my TV in 3840x2160 60Hz resolution - the same as all of the other Comcast channels from my Comcast 4K cable box.  The actual content is the old 640x480 content from the pre-High Definition days of old.  As we all know, Comcast still has some of that around.  When Comcast transmits new 16:9 content in the old 4:3 channels it comes out as a small-ish video.

 

Now that I understand what I am dealing with - I plan to study this more.  

 

One of the issues is that the actual Comcast display of the small-video is 3840x2160 with large black-bars and the Samsung TV can't understand why someone would want to zoom a 3840x2160 video and it greys-out the Samsung Zoom options - I guess assuming that it is being helpful in not providing what it thinks would be an illogical thing to do.

 

My first take is this is a design problem primarily with the Comcast software - although Samsung could probably help with some resesign of its software also.

 

This normally wouldn't have been a problem 15 years ago when everyone was on top of handling the co-existance of 4:3 and 16:9 - but, I'm thinking there are software designers who have forgotten all about (or are so young they have never experienced) those days long ago... eventhough Comcast is still using the old/obsolete 4:3 technology.  Fifteen years ago most TV remotes had a dedicated "Zoom" button - that is not the case today.

 


I suggest you read through the 150+ page Samsung manual and learn how to use your new Samsung UHD tv. It is unfortunate that Comcast down-graded almost all Premium channels to 480p (sd). I don't get any Premium channels from them. Your best option is to set your Samsung tv to 4:3 mode when watching any of those channels. You will have black bars on both sides but there is no way for a UHD television to synthesize 95%+ pixels to fill the whole screen. The resulting picture is still better than watching on an older tv.

Official Employee

Re: Zoom only stretches the screen and distorts the picture

@truerock2 - I'm happy to hear that you like a new DVR. As far as 4:3 content, it's not really a broadcast or firmware issue. If the content (show/movie) was filmed in pre-HD format - you will see a small picture. Please keep in mind we provide the content provided to us by the networks, we don't own it. However, I understand your concern about the Zoom feature and I will pass along your feedback. 


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Regular Contributor

Re: Zoom only stretches the screen and distorts the picture

ComcastElla,

 

Yes... I was thinking that it might be more of a ShowTime issue than a Xfinity issue.  I can see how that would be the case.  And, I was just just on my Wife's Samsung TV which is similiar to my Samsung TV - but, a slightly different (slightly older) model.  It's zoom festure is better about this kind of thing.  Still, I'm guessing that the low-res Showtime videos will probably not be around in a few years - being a relic of the past.

 

Thanks

Regular Contributor

Re: Zoom only stretches the screen and distorts the picture

MNtundraRET,

 

Yes - you are correct... it was definitely a RTFM "read the fine manual" situation.  The bottom line is (in my opinion) Samsung is phasing out support for zoom.  On my oldest Samsung TVs, zoom is supported differently and better than on my newest Samsung TV. 

 

Logically, Samsung thinks the days of flipping between 480i, 720p and 1080i channels is a relic of the past and something that the vast majority of people do not need or do today and definitely will not be doing in the future.  This odd matted-display by Showtime is actually strange and I'm not sure why Showtime does it.

 

As ComcastElla pointed out elsewhere in this thread (and I agree with her/him) this is really a Showtime/content-owner issue - not a Comcast issue.  And I'm thinking I agree.

 

Thanks for the feedback.

 

 

Official Employee

Re: Zoom only stretches the screen and distorts the picture

@truerock2 - I'm always happy to assist Smiley Happy 


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