Why does my picture have black bars on the top or the sides? / Everything looks stretched out. / I’m losing parts of the picture. Can I change that?
- Parent Category: VTelevision Frequently Asked Questions
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If you are seeing black bars and you want the picture to fill more of the screen, the picture looks stretched out, or you cannot see the entire picture, you can change the way your TV displays the video. First of all, since each television is different, you want the set-top box to be set to work with your television. To do this, press “Menu” and choose “Settings”. Select “Television” and then “Screen aspect ratio and high definition”. If you do not have an HDTV set, you will want it to be set to “4:3 standard definition” or “Widescreen standard definition”. If you have an HDTV set, check the manual to figure out if it is a 720p, 1080i, or 1080p screen. Choose the correct setting and then hit continue. If you are trying to change it to an HD setting, it will ask you to run a test. The screen may go black for several seconds, but then it will come back at the ratio you have chosen. Once the set-top box is set to work with your TV, you can further change the way you see the picture by pressing “Enter” and selecting “Aspect ratio”. There are several options, and as you scroll through them, you will see what it does to the picture on the screen. Choose the setting that best suits you and the program you are watching. You may have to change it on a program-to-program or channel-to-channel basis.