5 Replies Latest reply: Jan 2, 2007 3:11 PM by Edward 2006
Edward 2006 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
I've recently converted to a mac. The main reason for this was to take advantage of the superior video / dvd editing capabilities. However, I have hit upon a problem with the aspect ratio of the final video.

I have connected my video camera (a sony DCR-HC42E PAL which is in theory 16:9 aspect ratio) and imported the DV tape into iMovie. It recognised that this is a DV widescreen (i.e. 16:9)movie and imports the video and then "letterboxes" the video for some time. In the clips window it then shows each clip as it should in a widescreen mode.

I have created a final video then exported this to iDVD for burning to a disc. When it arrives in iDVD it is however elongated - i.e. 4:3 aspect ratio.

Is there any way of avoiding this / working around this problem?

I understand that my camera may not be videoing 16:9 but rather 4:3 then converting it itself - but in previous windows environment this was fine and the pre-loaded free windows movie maker software managed to cope with this - can a mac?

MacBook Pro   Mac OS X (10.4.8)  
  • mbu Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    I have the same problem, see in this forum area (30 dec 06). All suggestions don't resolve.
    QuickTime & iDvd don't recognize 16:9 aspect ratio. It's a serious problem.
    So, I also need a solution, please.
  • Edward 2006 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Having read many other discussions, it would seem that iMovie does not recognise anamorphic widescreen cameras - i.e. cameras which are not 'true' widescreen but rather 4:3 cameras which squash the image to a 16:9 ratio.

    My Sony DV camera is such a camera. Can anyone confirm this?

    Thanks very much in advance.
  • mbu Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    if U set iMovie to 16:9, you'll see your video in 16:9 (in iMovie primary clip window).
    But if U choose 16:9 in exporting, that clip exported is 4:3 for iDvd and QT.
  • Treidlia Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    I had the same problem with HC96.
    I reckon it should be fixable for your HC42
    Imovie seems to recognise PAL alright, but 16:9 setting doesn't 'stick'
    I regard this as an iMovie bug, and the solution is the fps setting.

    Open iMovie (I presume Version6.03)
    Go to iMovie ;preferences.
    Under 'import' tab change the fps to 25 fps
    Under 'general' tab uncheck the automatic pillarboxing ltterboxing
    Close iMovie to save prefs.

    Open imovie, create new project, and in the next screen in the dropdown mnu choose 'dv widescreen'.

    iMovie now imports and exports 16:9.
    Let me know if it works.

    iDvd is more controllable
    The new project window gives direct control on aspect ratio.
    The 'project' menu gives control over the project aspect ratio at any stage.
    iDVD project aspect ratio is completely independent of aspect ration of any movies in the project, merely dictates aspect ratio of the menus etc.
    You can easily have a 4:3 movie in 16:9 DVD, the television can correct.
  • Edward 2006 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thank you very much. I've spent the last 4 hours trying to solve this and also spent a good half hour on to apple care, not even their "teir 2" imovie experts in san fransisco could solve this problem - you are a star!!!!!

    I was just about to throw the mac through the window and revert to windows - you have restored the faith!

    I've done as you said (although the "auto pillerboxing tick is in "import" tab (not general) on my version 6.0.3 of imovie!) The movie has appeared in 16:9 format as suggested.

    I would also comment that for general information, I pressed on with the higer frame setting and edited the full movie with the wrong setting on the macbook all the way through which looked weird - then burned a dvd via idvd and used the 16:9 setting as you suggested and the final video looked fine - therefore, the only place where the movie is incorrect was on the mac screen.

    Overall I would agree that this is definatly a imovie "glitch". Thanks again.

    MacBook Pro   Mac OS X (10.4.8)