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Hardware Support Discussions related to using various hardware setups with SageTV products. Anything relating to capture cards, remotes, infrared receivers/transmitters, system compatibility or other hardware related problems or suggestions should be posted here.

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Old 07-19-2008, 11:31 AM
davefred99 davefred99 is offline
Sage Advanced User
Join Date: Jun 2005
Posts: 158
Using and HD reciever To record on SD tuner

I am in the middle of a complete change over from a mix of both Verizon Fios & Direct Tv. I have been using the Fios for SD locals and HD locals & Direct Tv for everyting else. My Direct TV is being recorded to a pair of PVR 150 tuners.

Since I am eliminating the Direct TV completely I ordered one SD Receiver (DCT-700) and On HD receiver (QIP6200) to feed my tuners. I am eventually going to get an HD-PVR but my budget is short right now and I am waiting to make sure that all the Bugs get worked out too.

My question is how does the HD well does using an HD receiver for SD recording work via S video . When recording HD content I assume that I will get a letter boxed 4X3 picture. Will it be full screen albeit letter boxed or will it be a smaller inset because of the original 16X9 source. Second How will this apply to non HD Channels that are from a 4X3 SD source.
My thinking is that I can use the HD receiver for now in and when I am ready just upgrade to the HD PVR.
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Old 07-19-2008, 05:40 PM
Conejo Conejo is offline
Sage Expert
Join Date: May 2006
Location: California
Posts: 645
HD STBs have an S-video circuit that will downconvert video to 720480, with a hidden options screen where the user can select output options.

Normally, SD 4:3 video is displayed full screen; Anything HD is displayed letterboxed (black top and bottom)
S-Video Out:
source 4:3 -> 4:3 picture
source 16:9 -> 4:3 (16:9 video letterbox top and bottom)

Then your 4:3 or 16:9 TV display comes into play and will adjust the video again to fit its screen.

One of my local stations is broadcast HD but its news it still 4:3 aspect ratio so they 'force fill' the left and right to prevent auto-stretch. I assume the anchors don't want to look fat. Anyway, this creates a seudo 16:9 image that the S-video circuit then letter boxes so I get a black bars on all sides with a little video running in the middle. It's inset on a 16:9; an even smaller inset on a 4:3 display.

I'm sure you'll run into a couple of anomalies but otherwise it will look great.

Last edited by Conejo; 07-19-2008 at 05:58 PM.
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Old 07-21-2008, 06:36 AM
BFisher BFisher is offline
Sage Aficionado
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 394
I set my DirecTV HD receivers to output at 720p in widescreen format. Even though I'm connecting to my Sage box with s-video, it still outputs in widescreen format.

When I play it on a Sage HD Extender, I have to hit the Video button on the remote to change the aspect ratio... otherwise it squeezes the widescreen format into a 4:3 screen (I assume since it was recorded by SVideo, it assumes it's 4:3 recording). There's probably a way to automatically fix this... but I haven't found it yet.

When I play it on a MVP, it automatically fills the screen properly.

Either way... it looks significantly better than recording SD off the DirecTV box. Not HD quality... but a good step above SD.
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