Beginners and old-time enthusiasts and everyone with varying skills in between commit mistakes galore and come to videohelp.com to learn and all is forgiven. IMHO, the people at the controls responsible for the technical aspects of the METOpera HD broadcast of Tristan und Isolde last Saturday 8 October should perhaps throw in a question here or two as well if things get awry... I saw the broadcast in a theatre in Mississauga, ON, Canada and the picture had a wrong aspect ratio; the picture (which should have normally been square pixeled 16:9) was stretched horizontally such that extreme left and right parts were cut off, the fat lady became fatter, and projected circles became ellipses (see attached pics). My observation says it's like the normal 16:9 was stretched to 2.4:1, though I'm not sure. We were told by theater management that the situation was the same for all other theatres showing the same live broadcast in the greater Toronto area, making it very likely the problem was at the source. I wonder if heads rolled as a result or all was forgiven too....
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For the nth time, with the possible exception of certain Intel processors, I don't have/ever owned anything whose name starts with "i".
The brain accommodates and, unfortunately, most viewers are accustomed to distorted images on their home displays. And now they slip past supposed "professionals" who would have been fired on the spot for this kind of error back in the heyday of television broadcasting.
This is not happening in theaters only, It is happening at a large scale on cable and satellite television, Sometimes I wonder if those broadcasting/production companies ever trained their technicians on how aspect ratios work, to me it seems like all what they care about is compress, compress and compress for more crap, Although back in the plasma days did make a little sense to broadcast a horizontally stretched picture to avoid the burn in but they forgot the user can make that decision for himself by using the aspect ratio setting in the TV menu, The worse I've seen is when a 16/9 HD source is letter boxed and scaled down for 4/3 SD TV channel and viewed on a widescreen TV with black bars on all 4 sides, very disgusting. I hope the FCC steps in and put an end to some loose regulations and force the broadcasters/producers to invest in new broadcasting/production equipment given the fact that most if not all consumers have a widescreen panel in their homes here in the US.
The broadcasters did have standards & trained engineers, but with the rise of digital production, post-production, & distribution (esp. streaming), it became increasingly a LCD/commodity market and the way to maintain profit was for the corporations to lay off the older trained workers and hire young untrained ones in their place, or even do without and have their things be self-sourced.
No more training, no more history = no more standards = declining base of quality. Even while the technology has improved.
No, the FCC will not step in. They have been on a fairly long term trend of backing off of regulation, and the tenor of the upcoming administration is just going to hyper-accelerate that. Less regulation, not more. In fact, there is a good chance that even the net neutrality rulings will get reversed, so you had better get used to less satisfaction as a media consumer.