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You can set the picture size by remote control itself.
You can vide 480i format programmes in three picture sizes. 4:3, 16:9, and ZOOM
You can change the picture size by pressing the PICTURE SIZE button on the remote control.
4:3 Picutre size
To fill the screen, the top and bottom edges are extedted more widely, although the center of the picture remains near the former ratio.
If receiving a 4:3 programme, the image size is displayed in its originally formatted proportion.
16:9 picure size
This image displays the size of standard 16:9 with black bars at the top and bottom.
If receiving a 4:3 programme, the image is displayed with black bars at the top and bottom and stretched wider.
NOTE: If a fixed bar remains on the screen for a long period of time, the image can become parmanantly engrained in the screen and cause subtle but permanent ghost images. Never leave your TV for long periods of time while it is displaying these images.
Zoom picture size [for 16:9 formats]
The entire picture is uniformly enlarged --it is stretched the same amount both wider and taller (retains its original proportion). The right and left edges of the picture may be hidden.
There are alot of things that can cause this. In my experience the most likley culprit in an older TV is that an electrolytic capacitor in the horizontal circuit has gone bad due to heat. You will need to locate the horizontal section and check each cap. especially those near a heat source like a transistor or IC on a heat sync. Since TV's have dangerous lethal voltages I would only recommend doing this if you have experience and take the usual industry accepted percautions.
Hi hsaucier, Although you have a wide-screen television, it is possible the video you are viewing was recorded in an even wider format. The bars should be smaller than if you were viewing the same DVD on a TV with a 4:3 aspect ratio, but will likely not disappear unless you view the DVD at a zoom setting. Many movies are shown in theaters at a wider ratio than 16:9, and the Blu-Ray disc has probably retained the entire picture rather than cropping it to fit your screen. I recommend trying different viewing options that zoom in slightly. Be aware that this may cut off part of the picture from the left and right sides, but depending on your personal preference, you may not notice anything missing.
Unfortunately, a cinema screen is even wider than a widescreen TV. Because of this (in order to keep the original aspect ratio), even with a widescreen TV you still end up with the black bars top and bottom.
Check the aspect ratio of the DVD (Should be printed on the back of the case somewhere).
Unless it says 1.85:1 or 16:9 Anamorphic, you will get the black bars. (Many films on DVD are 2.35:1 or even wider!)
Have you got any different picture modes on your TV. I've got a Toshiba and it has something called 'cinema mode' which does eliminate the bars. Unfortunately it does it by zooming in on the picture slightly, so you loose a bit off the side of the picture and the image does get a little grainier.