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The W - Random - Technical Question For Anyone In TV/Video Production
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NickBockwinkelFan
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Since: 10.4.02
From: New York City, NY

Since last post: 930 days
Last activity: 11 days
#1 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.09
What is the technical term for the enlarging of the screen image in order to remove the scrolling graphics from the bottom of the screen?

Usually this is used during Sportscenter or any highlight show where they want to remove either the competing network's logo from the corner or the info crawl on the bottom of the screen.

When they use this technique, the picture resolution is diminished and looks totally washed out. Is the resolution affected with a high definition or digital tv in the same way?

I've seen this alot in the last 18 months, but the reason it's bothering me now is wrestling related. I have been down in Florida since the hurricanes and ever since Charley hit (8/13), and we got our power back, the local Ft.Myers UPN affiliate (ch 44) has been running Smackdown with this screen enlarging technique for the entire show. An additional development over the last two weeks is the entire show being broadcast with no audio. Some of their other shows and commercials are also broadcast with this enlarged screen, but I rarely see UPN, so my research is limited to switching over when I think about it.

I've got about five weeks of unwatched Smackdown on tape and I just can't bring myself to catch up.

(edited by NickBockwinkelFan on 17.10.04 1623)


"Well, you can't involve friendship with business. It has to be one or the other. It's either business or friendship, or hit the bricks!"
--Life Lessons from "The Tao of Bobby the Brain Heenan" Uncensored 2000 preview


"As long as the check don't bounce, I guess he's okay with it!"
--Former All Pro Giants LB Harry Carson on Bill Parcells joining the hated rival Dallas Cowboys

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Since: 9.12.01
From: Bay City, OR

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#2 Posted on | Instant Rating: 8.81
I think your HDTV is broken. Are you forcing everything into Widescreen mode?

It boggles my mind that a TV station would actually do what you are saying they are doing.



Willful ignorance of science is not commendable. Refusing to learn the difference between a credible source and a shill is criminally stupid.
NickBockwinkelFan
Frankfurter








Since: 10.4.02
From: New York City, NY

Since last post: 930 days
Last activity: 11 days
#3 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.09
This is the only channel that does it and I even checked the over the air signal with my portable tv and it had the same funky picture.



"Well, you can't involve friendship with business. It has to be one or the other. It's either business or friendship, or hit the bricks!"
--Life Lessons from "The Tao of Bobby the Brain Heenan" Uncensored 2000 preview


"As long as the check don't bounce, I guess he's okay with it!"
--Former All Pro Giants LB Harry Carson on Bill Parcells joining the hated rival Dallas Cowboys

The Thrill
Banger








Since: 16.4.02
From: Green Bay, WI

Since last post: 197 days
Last activity: 43 days
#4 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.25
Catch The Thrill on "Pick of the Week": taped Tuesdays at Planet Magic in Denmark, WI; on the air Sundays @ 1 am on WB-14!

    Originally posted by NickBockwinkelFan
    What is the technical term for the enlarging of the screen image in order to remove the scrolling graphics from the bottom of the screen?
    Usually this is used during Sportscenter or any highlight show where they want to remove either the competing network's logo from the corner or the info crawl on the bottom of the screen.
    When they use this technique, the picture resolution is diminished and looks totally washed out. Is the resolution affected with a high definition or digital tv in the same way?


In the biz, we call this "blowing up" the image, usually with a device called an ADO (dunno what that stands for) or other digital device to maniuplate video. What it does is takes the existing image and changes its size, one way or the other. That's fine for shrinking video, but when you expand it, you're taking the same amount of pixels and resolution, and making it cover a wider area than it originally did. There's less information per capita to cover the new surface area; therefor, it is normal for your picture to look crappy.

Think of it like a quarter-sized puddle of paint. If you spread that over a postcard, it'll look a lot more red than if you spread the same amount of paint over an 8"x11" piece of paper.

And as far as I know, the HDTV revolution won't fix that problem. It's the same principle, just a different over-the-air delivery system for the video and audio information to be decoded by your TV. Click here (WBAY-TV...my employer) for a comprehensive, multi-page guide to HDTV.

    Originally posted by NickBockwinkelFan
    An additional development over the last two weeks is the entire show being broadcast with no audio. Some of their other shows and commercials are also broadcast with this enlarged screen, but I rarely see UPN, so my research is limited to switching over when I think about it.


That could be a multitude of things. If you get audio fine on every other channel, it's safe to assume the problem isn't with your TV. Call the station and let them know about it; ask to speak to their chief engineer.

    Originally posted by NickBockwinkelFan
    I've got about five weeks of unwatched Smackdown on tape and I just can't bring myself to catch up.


That could also be because SmackDown! sucks donkey balls these days. :-)



Star wipe, and...we're out.
Thrillin' ain't easy.



THE THRILL
ACW-NWA Wisconsin
Home Video Technical Director...&
A2NWO 4 Life!
(Click the big G or here to hear the Packers Fight Song in RealAudio...or try .AU, .WAV or .MIDI!)
Mike Zeidler
Pepperoni








Since: 27.6.02

Since last post: 79 days
Last activity: 38 days
#5 Posted on | Instant Rating: 2.48
    Originally posted by The Thrill
    In the biz, we call this "blowing up" the image, usually with a device called an ADO (dunno what that stands for) or other digital device to manipulate video.


ADO stands for Ampex Digital Optics, Ampex's DVE device. I almost have to wonder if the Ampex proclivity is a regional anomaly, as most refer to the devices simply as DVEs. I remember when I moved down to Champaign, IL from Wausau that everyone looked at me oddly when I referred to the DVE as the ADO, ah well, kind of moot now, with the complete overhaul.

Just for fun, what kind of still store do you have? Is it an ancient Ampex with a metal encased keyboard?
Teppan-Yaki
Pepperoni








Since: 28.6.02

Since last post: 945 days
Last activity: 915 days
#6 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.85
My first reaction? Call the station. If it were, say a pre-emption of a show due to a special report... I'd say forget it. However, if the signal is altered for some reason, you have every right to call and ask what the heck is going on. I would.

ADO stands for "Ampex Digital Optics" -- meaning that the actual machine, which is a digital effects machine, gets its moniker from its company. We do have an ADO, but I would bet sooner or later depending on the technology, it'll become obsolete. I would also venture to guess that ESPN's screen enlargement (or what you could call "crawl eraser") is through Avid (if that's what they use) -- Avid's NewsCutter has the effect to enlarge video. And yes, after about a 20% enlargement of video, you'll get some pixellation.

Speaking of editing systems... paging Dr. Ed -- what system do you use?

EDIT: There's no way Green Bay could have an old Ampex still store. I'll put .01 on it. Alpena, Michigan, OTOH...

(edited by Teppan-Yaki on 19.10.04 2350)
Mike Zeidler
Pepperoni








Since: 27.6.02

Since last post: 79 days
Last activity: 38 days
#7 Posted on | Instant Rating: 3.68
    Originally posted by Teppan-Yaki
    There's no way Green Bay could have an old Ampex still store. I'll put .01 on it. Alpena, Michigan, OTOH


Believe me, I thought nobody outsife of Wausau had an Ampex ESS-5 stillstore, but when I moved down to Champaign, much to my horror, there sat my old nemesis. What was stranger was that it wasn't as functional as the one in Wausau. (Which we ended up buying for parts a couple of years later.)

I feel so much better now that we've switched to the Thunder. (Though we still have an Abekas-52 dve that barely works)
Teppan-Yaki
Pepperoni








Since: 28.6.02

Since last post: 945 days
Last activity: 915 days
#8 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.85
    Originally posted by Zundian
      Originally posted by Teppan-Yaki
      There's no way Green Bay could have an old Ampex still store. I'll put .01 on it. Alpena, Michigan, OTOH


    Believe me, I thought nobody outsife of Wausau had an Ampex ESS-5 stillstore, but when I moved down to Champaign, much to my horror, there sat my old nemesis. What was stranger was that it wasn't as functional as the one in Wausau. (Which we ended up buying for parts a couple of years later.)

    I feel so much better now that we've switched to the Thunder. (Though we still have an Abekas-52 dve that barely works)


We actually have an Abekas that is routed through so we can have the anchors in the double-box without having them turn. Is the Thunder through Pinnacle? We have the Lightning system.

Also -- we're converting to Avid very soon; I just saw the demo for NewsCutter and I'm piqued.

So -- work for Sinclair? ;)
Mike Zeidler
Pepperoni








Since: 27.6.02

Since last post: 79 days
Last activity: 38 days
#9 Posted on | Instant Rating: 3.68
    Originally posted by Teppan-Yaki
    Is the Thunder through Pinnacle? We have the Lightning system.

    Also -- we're converting to Avid very soon; I just saw the demo for NewsCutter and I'm piqued.

    So -- work for Sinclair? ;)


Why yes, I do, how could you tell? (: Yeah, the Thunder is Pinnacle's clipstore, they're usually used in conjunction with Lightnings, but we get what we can. We also just got a Deko 550 and an FX Deko II, so we can run the official Sinclair graphics package. (Man, I hope I get that other job so I can get away from all this.)

Mike Z.
(Don't forget to watch Stolen Honor: Why John Kerry is a douche, this friday on your local Sinclair station)
NickBockwinkelFan
Frankfurter








Since: 10.4.02
From: New York City, NY

Since last post: 930 days
Last activity: 11 days
#10 Posted on | Instant Rating: 7.09
I have some additional strangeness concerning this entire situation. The station is WEVU located in Ft.Myers, Florida and is owned by the Caloosa Television Corporation. I tried calling the station a few times as suggested and it is simply a recording with voicemail options. The station shows paid programming virtually round the clock, until prime time when they show the UPN shows (sometimes), often with the enlarged screen image.

Smackdown is the only program (as far as I can tell) they broadcast without audio (4 weeks in a row). I believe they are doing it on purpose as they deem the material objectionable. When they get to certain parts of the show, they either cut to a station/UPN logo or clips from a religous broadcast from The First Assembly of God (usually singing). I couldn't make this up.

Examples of edits:

10/7
Taker's blade job during PPV recap
Cena's promo on Cole
Big Show stepping on Jindrak's chest
Tough Enough candidate doing push ups with tongue out

10/14
Luthor Reigns oils up while talking with Sun Page 3 girls
Carlito's entrance
Eddie escorted to ring by Page 3 girls

This is so bizarre.


(edited by NickBockwinkelFan on 23.10.04 1701)


"Well, you can't involve friendship with business. It has to be one or the other. It's either business or friendship, or hit the bricks!"
--Life Lessons from "The Tao of Bobby the Brain Heenan" Uncensored 2000 preview


"As long as the check don't bounce, I guess he's okay with it!"
--Former All Pro Giants LB Harry Carson on Bill Parcells joining the hated rival Dallas Cowboys

Guru Zim
SQL Dejection
Administrator








Since: 9.12.01
From: Bay City, OR

Since last post: 1 day
Last activity: 5 hours
AIM:  
#11 Posted on | Instant Rating: 8.81
You could hunt around the FCC site to figure out if there is an official channel via the govt. I have no idea what is going on with your station.



Willful ignorance of science is not commendable. Refusing to learn the difference between a credible source and a shill is criminally stupid.
Mr Heel II
Lap cheong








Since: 25.2.02

Since last post: 14 days
Last activity: 11 hours
#12 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.09
So can I safely assume from this talk that Sinclair is just a bunch of cheap bastards everywhere, not just here?

KDSM Des Moines is one of the worst examples of television broadcasting I've ever seen. In the year 2004, this station is broadcasting in mono. Mono sound with a compression limiter that is set so extreme that dead spots bring up hiss to the point you can nearly hear ground hum. Their picture quality has traditionally been dark and fuzzy, but that's actually improved to a degree in recent years.

I have a DirecTV receiver with a built-in HDTV tuner, but no HDTV. I am watching the content on our local DTV broadcasts via antenna, letterboxed, on my 27-inch television. Amazingly, KDSM is actually passing the 5.1 Dolby Digital audio on the Fox football games, and it's great. It gets a little comical when the local spots come on because the receiver kicks to center channel mono, and KDSM actually stretches the video on their local commercial inserts to the 16:9 format (while Fox letterboxes the sides), but there you go.

But last Sunday, I wandered into the high-end electronics store. They had all of their big HDTV sets showing the Fox game. And every one of them looked horrible, like they were streaming video over the web and displaying it on "Double" size. It was a blown-up picture. The graphics were all rough and the artifacts were insane.

So here's what I think they're doing. I think they're actually broadcasting a standard format picture, letterboxed, to wherever the digital transmission is processed. Then they're zooming the picture to fill the screen before transmitting.

Does that sound about right? Are your stations doing something similar?
PeterStork
Sujuk








Since: 25.1.02
From: Chicagoland with Hoosiers, or "The Region"

Since last post: 49 days
Last activity: 12 hours
#13 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.90
    Originally posted by Mr Heel II
    So can I safely assume from this talk that Sinclair is just a bunch of cheap bastards everywhere, not just here?


I had a chance about a month ago to talk to one of the former engineers at Sinclair's KDNL-St. Louis that was fired when they decided that a top 20 market ABC affiliate doesn't need local news. Too 'spensive, I guess. He told me about their process for wiring for HD, which involved using the cheapest cables possible. During the operation he commented on the poor quality of the equipment to the guys Sinclair sent in to do it, and their response was a glorified "eh."

He actually copped to being one of the bastards that chopped up the syndicated Simpsons eps KDNL runs twice nightly. As he put it, he was asked to cut x minutes out of an episode, but not told where, so he had to figure out what he could cut (and still have the episode make sense) to meet the quota. Most of the time he'd finish, barely keeping the episode comprehensible, and then be told "take out another minute."

These days, I've seen KDNL chop out an entire three minute scene, leaving the episode quite confusing for newcomers. The 6:00 Simpsons usually starts at 6:00 and ends by 6:25 so that the 6:30 can start at 6:26 and end by 6:52 so Sinclair can pack eight solid minutes of commercials in before ABC begins its primetime programming.



exit 670 dot com

Red Means Go!

The St. Louis Cardinals, to the rest of baseball: You'll get NOTHING and LIKE IT!

The Thrill
Banger








Since: 16.4.02
From: Green Bay, WI

Since last post: 197 days
Last activity: 43 days
#14 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.25
Catch The Thrill on "Pick of the Week": taped Tuesdays at Planet Magic in Denmark, WI; on the air Sundays @ 1 am on WB-14!

    Originally posted by Mr Heel II
    So can I safely assume from this talk that Sinclair is just a bunch of cheap bastards everywhere, not just here?
    I think they're actually broadcasting a standard format picture, letterboxed, to wherever the digital transmission is processed. Then they're zooming the picture to fill the screen before transmitting.


Ah, yes...good ol' shunting. Sure sounds like you pegged it: they're taking their standard 4:3 NTSC signal and upconverting it to broadcast on their 16:9 DTV frequency. But if you botch the upconversion, it can often end up looking like your aforementioned crap.

And from what I've heard, Sinclair is consistently a bunch of cheap bastards everywhere. Ask the folks on the B-Roll message board...a great site for TV photogs and broadcast professionals. (That's a contradiction in terms, I know...)



Star wipe, and...we're out.
Thrillin' ain't easy.



THE THRILL
ACW-NWA Wisconsin
Home Video Technical Director...&
A2NWO 4 Life!
(Click the big G or here to hear the Packers Fight Song in RealAudio...or try .AU, .WAV or .MIDI!)
Mr Heel II
Lap cheong








Since: 25.2.02

Since last post: 14 days
Last activity: 11 hours
#15 Posted on | Instant Rating: 6.09
Thanks. I checked out B-Roll, and in a search found a thread that redirected to AV Science Forum, where there's active threads for HDTV users in most markets, including this one. There I discovered that KDSM is apparently doing BOTH stretching (as I saw) and passing a live 720p feed from Fox on like 17.2 or something. They don't always get it right, but that's better than nothing.

Anyway, if you're interested in HDTV in your market, it looks like a pretty live discussion board. My market actually has at least one member who is with one of the station's engineering teams, and he bothers to explain his station's technical glitches.

(And now that I'm TOTALLY off the topic...)
Mr. Boffo
Scrapple








Since: 24.3.02
From: Oshkosh, WI

Since last post: 459 days
Last activity: 420 days
#16 Posted on | Instant Rating: 3.28
To get back to NickBockwinkelFan, the only e-mail address I found was the unoriginal info@wevu.com . I also did see wevutu@tntonline.com, but apparently that domain has gone out of business. Was it (239) 793-9603 that you called?
Just found this: http://www.radio-info.com/mods/board?Post=276239&Board=tv . Looking at the date, it sounds like the change may have happened due to Comcast no longer being associated with WEVU.



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