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Neil Best leaves no stone unturned in the world of sports media.

Fox goes wide right, and left

Now that more than half of American homes – not including WatchDog headquarters – has an HD TV, Fox has made a dramatic turn in how it produces and presents NFL games.

If you have a standard definition TV, you might have noticed Fox’s preseason  telecast Thursday night was letterboxed, yielding a shorter but wider picture.

The reason? Fox has begun producing games in the 16:9 picture ratio used for HD, allowing it to put the far ends of the screen to use, rather than making sure everything important fits in the 4:3 ratio of SD.

It’s a clear positive for HD viewers.

For SD there is a tradeoff: A more expansive view side to side, but one squeezed top to bottom. Not a big deal on my vintage 32-inch SONY from 1995, but likely an annoyance for those with smaller sets.

Tags: Fox , NFL , HD

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