View Full Version : Pixel Sizes vs. Aspect Ratio For DVD?

2007-02-07, 01:35 PM
Im a little confused here... basically my question is this:

How can both 16:9 & 4:3 aspect ratios both be 720x480 pixels? It seems like 16:9 would have a larger pixel width than 4:3.

It came up recently when I tried to patch missing footage in a widescreen DVD using still photos. I edited the photos in photoshop to 720x480 pixels, but when I dropped them in using Vegas, the photos weren't quite wide enough, and there were black bars on the left and right of the photos. I ended up cropping them to about 875x480 pixels to get it to fill up the width.

Its also an issue in Architect. Im using photos for the menu backgrounds, and if the photo isnt sized properly, architect stretches it to fit the widescreen format, which distorts the photo.

How do folks properly size photos to fit in Vegas & Architect in both 16:9 & 4:3 aspect ratios?

Any help here would be greatly appreciated!

2007-02-08, 11:22 AM
4:3 has square pixels. 16:9 has rectangle pixels. You are putting square pixel material into a rectangle pixel project.

2007-02-08, 04:53 PM
4:3 has square pixels. 16:9 has rectangle pixels. You are putting square pixel material into a rectangle pixel project.

OK that makes sense. So how do you set up photos for slideshows/menu art in 16:9? Is there a certain ratio of pixel width to height to get it to fit right without distortion?

2007-02-09, 02:26 PM
I am no expert here but this is what I think. Every camera takes pictures at slightly different sizes (which is one way they adjust picture quality also). see below. This is what I do and this may not be correct. someone please jump in and educate me if it's not. I open photoshop and make a blank page using the widescreen 16:9 template which sets the size and rectangle pixels. Then I paste my image into there and zoom/unzoom it to be cropped by the templates border. Then I use those in my movies. There is probably a way to automate this process but I don't know it. I don't have photoshop here at work or I would give you the dimensions it sets up.

* 1.19:1: "Movietone" - early 35 mm sound film ratio used in the late 1920s and early 1930s, especially in Europe. The optical soundtrack was placed on the side of the 1.33 frame, thus reducing the width of the frame. The Academy Aperture frame (1.37) fixed this by making the frame lines thicker. The best examples of this ratio are Fritz Lang's first sound films: M and The Testament of Dr. Mabuse. This is roughly the frame size used for anamorphic photography today.
* 1.25:1: Commonly used computer resolution of 1280x1024. Native aspect ratio of many LCDs. Also the aspect ratio of 4x5 film photos. The British 405 line TV system used this aspect ratio from its beginning in the 1930s until 1950 when it changed to the more common 4:3 format.
* 1.33:1: 35 mm original silent film ratio, common in TV and video as 4:3. Also standard ratio for IMAX and MPEG-2 video compression.
* 1.37:1: 35 mm full-screen sound film image, nearly universal in movies between 1932 and 1953. Officially adopted as the Academy ratio in 1932 by AMPAS. Still occasionally used. Also standard 16 mm.
* 1.43:1: IMAX 70 mm horizontal format.
* 1.5:1: The aspect ratio of 35 mm film used for still photography. Wide-aspect computer display (3:2). Used in Apple PowerBook G4 15.2" displays with resolutions of most recently 1440x960.
* 1.504:1: The aspect ratio of some digital SLR cameras, such as the Nikon D70.
* 1.56:1: Widescreen aspect ratio 14:9. Often used in shooting commercials etc. as a compromise format between TV 4:3 (12:9) and Widescreen 16:9, especially when the output will be used in both standard TV and widescreen. When converted to a 16:9 frame, only a small portion of the picture is lost, and when converted to 4:3 there is only slight letterboxing.
* 1.6:1: computer display widescreen (8:5, commonly referred to as 16:10). Used in WSXGAPlus, WUXGA and other display resolutions. This aspect ratio has been chosen for many modern widescreen computer displays because of its ability to display two full pages of text side by side. [1]
* 1.66:1: 35 mm European widescreen standard; Super 16 mm. (5:3, sometimes expressed more accurately as "1.67".)
* 1.75:1: early 35 mm widescreen ratio, since abandoned.
* 1.78:1: video widescreen standard (16:9). Also used in high-definition television One of 3 ratios specified for MPEG-2 video compression.
* 1.85:1: 35 mm US and UK widescreen standard for theatrical film. Uses approximately 3 perforations ("perfs") of image space per 4 perf frame; films can be shot in 3-perf to save cost of film stock. Also known as "flat".
* 2.00:1: Used primarily as a flat format in the 1950s and early 1960s by Universal-International, as well as Paramount for some of their VistaVision titles. Also used as one of the variable anamorphic ratios with SuperScope. Used as the aspect ratio for the DVD release of Apocalypse Now.
* 2.2:1: 70 mm standard. Originally developed for Todd-AO in the 1950s. 2.21:1 specified for MPEG-2 but not used.
* 2.35:1 : 35 mm anamorphic prior to 1970, used by CinemaScope ("'Scope") and early Panavision. The anamorphic standard has subtly changed so that modern anamorphic productions are actually 2.39[1], but often referred to as 2.35 anyway, due to old convention. (Note that anamorphic refers to the print and not necessarily the negative.)
* 2.39:1: 35 mm anamorphic from 1970 onwards. Sometimes rounded up to 2.40[1]. Sometimes referred to as 'Scope.
* 2.55:1: Original aspect ratio of CinemaScope before optical sound was added to the film. This was also the aspect ratio of CinemaScope 55.
* 2.59:1: Cinerama at full height (three specially captured 35 mm images projected side-by-side into one composite widescreen image).
* 2.76:1: MGM Camera 65 (65 mm with 1.25x anamorphic squeeze). Only used on a handful of films between 1956 and 1964, such as Ben-Hur (1959).
* 4:1: Polyvision, three 35 mm 1.33 images projected side by side. Only used on Abel Gance's Napoléon (1927).