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> Archos Av500 Strange 16 By 9 Aspect Ratio
Steadi
post Jun 19 2006, 02:26 AM
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[FONT=Impact][COLOR=blue]
Hi

I've bought an AV 500 for recording from a 16 by 9 camera system but when played back the pictures have about 10% of the headroon cut off, i.e. are not true 16 by 9

This also happens when you play out to a tv

Am I doing something daft, or is this the way archos have made the device to suit the TFT screen which seems a little wider than it should be.

Mike
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Steadi
post Jun 19 2006, 07:46 AM
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Got bored today and measured the visible screen on the Arcos. Its 50x84mm whick works out at a ratio of 15 x9. You would expect to lose a little data at the sides but the DVR seems to cut off about 10% from the headroom as it records and then stretches the picture slightly the other way to fit their odd screen.

When played out to a 16 x 9 TV the picture displays in 4 x 3 with bars top and bottom. If the TV zoomed to 16 by 9 even more data becomes lost at the top of frame (archos is sending 15x9) and a long shot (head to toe) of an actor gets cut off at the eyes!

THis is a complete mess unless of course I am doing something wrong!

Spoke to archos but they were pretty useless and dont seem to understand aspect ratio and cut off anyway.

Will try firmware download but if that doesnt work there will be another new Archos AV500 going onto Ebay!
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omro
post Jun 20 2006, 05:14 AM
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Check the picture format of the AV500, it has an annoying way of zooming in slightly in auto mode cutting off top and bottom or the sides sometimes to fill the screen for you.
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Paris7
post Aug 10 2006, 01:23 AM
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QUOTE(Steadi @ Jun 19 2006, 12:26 PM)
[FONT=Impact][COLOR=blue]
Hi

I've bought an AV 500 for recording from a 16 by 9 camera system but when played back the pictures have about 10% of the headroom cut off, i.e. are not true 16 by 9

This also happens when you play out to a tv

Am I doing something daft, or is this the way archos have made the device to suit the TFT screen which seems a little wider than it should be.

Mike
*


I'm using my AV500 on my Digi Betacam and no, it doesn't seem to cope with true 16X9..... pity.
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Steadi
post Aug 16 2006, 02:06 AM
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Yup

Have tried everything... brilliant piece of kit but totally useless to me!

Anyone want to buy an archos with about 3 hours runtime?

Mike


[/quote]
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Paris7
post Aug 17 2006, 02:35 AM
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[quote=Steadi,Aug 16 2006, 12:06 PM]
Yup

Have tried everything... brilliant piece of kit but totally useless to me!

Anyone want to buy an archos with about 3 hours runtime?

Mike


[/quote]
*

[/quote]


Contact me by email, I do know someone in 4x3 land who might buy it from you.
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Paris7
post Aug 23 2006, 05:07 AM
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[quote=Paris7,Aug 17 2006, 12:35 PM]
[quote=Steadi,Aug 16 2006, 12:06 PM]
Yup

Have tried everything... brilliant piece of kit but totally useless to me!

Mike, NewMp3Technology suggest that those of us with true 16X9 framing requirements get together and badger Archos into fixing the problem in their next Firmware release. They said that we'll have to get our teath stuck in as Archos are indated with requests and as we know Archos has a useless customer service.
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Paris7
post Aug 30 2006, 06:59 AM
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Not good news for Archos AV 500 owners, especially any serious cameraman out there.

Having emailed ARCHOS support several times about this 16x9 problem and received not one reply, I phoned the Archos UK Hot-line (in Holland I think) and spoke to a nice Dutchman called Barry Danwichers.

I very carefully explained that in the 16x9 video record mode, the image shown during recording is false in that what you see on the Archos is severely cropped at the top of frame and squeezed. i,e. dangerously useless to use as a monitor as your framing will be well out. No use as an Archos recorded 16x9 image because it bares no relation to a 16x9 format image and is squeezed.

Steadi is right, he has the same problem. NewMp3Technology identified it as a probable Firmware error and suggested that we get together and badger Archos for a Firmware fix, otherwise, they said Archos will do nothing.

Having seen that the new 604, is coming out I feared that Archos would "Drop" any plans to update the AV 500 firmware beyond 5.12. While speaking to Barry Danwichers at Archos technical support today, he checked on this 16x9 problem and came back to tell me that despite the 16x9 mode offered in the record menu, it doesn't work, that their advice is to only record in 4x3. He confirmed that ARCHOS has no interest in fixing this.

I am duly returning both my Archos AV 500 30 gigs as: (these words are carefully chosen for their legal meaning and weight).

"Despite my best efforts to resolve this factory fault with Archos I am informed by the Archos Technical Department that they know that the Archos AV 500 series will always fail to deliver on the 16x9 format. Consequently I am returning both units as unfit for the purpose for which they were sold."




[quote=Paris7,Aug 23 2006, 03:07 PM]
[quote=Paris7,Aug 17 2006, 12:35 PM]
[quote=Steadi,Aug 16 2006, 12:06 PM]
Yup

Have tried everything... brilliant piece of kit but totally useless to me!

Mike, NewMp3Technology suggest that those of us with true 16X9 framing requirements get together and badger Archos into fixing the problem in their next Firmware release. They said that we'll have to get our teath stuck in as Archos are indated with requests and as we know Archos has a useless customer service.
*

[/quote]
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Steadi
post Aug 30 2006, 01:14 PM
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Thanks Paris 7

I'm so disappointed in my archos that I stopped reading the forum! The bloody thing has sat on the kitchen table since its one and only test flight on the world cup.

The only thing i havnt tried is to record in 4x3 and try to make it replay streached to 16 by 9. On second thoughts that is way too much of a compromise and the screen is narrower than 16 x 9 anyway!

I now think I'll do the same as you and return the product, unfortunately it was bought from Dixons airside at heathrow so this may be a problem.

Many thanks for chasing this and proving my sanity... Archos helpline just diddnt seem to understand aspect ratios and were TOTALLY USELESS.

I do hope someone at Archos reads these forums as the excellent hardware quality of their products is not matched by their crappy software!

Thanks again

Mike
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Paris7
post Sep 26 2006, 09:17 AM
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ARCHOS SA
Henri Crohas, P-DG
12 rue Ampère,
91430 Igny
France

26/9/06
Dear Mr Crohas,
Archos AV 500 30 Gig numbers F053706531 and F05403697
I purchased both these AV 500 player recorders at FNAC Les Halles Paris in May 2006 for my professional work. I understood that they would support an Archos camera - that was withdrawn from the market; I also understood from your own specifications that the Archos AV 500 recorded and supported the 16x9 format. It does not record or display 16x9 format video.
Several of us in Broadcast television have been waiting for a firmware fix to this factory fault. It has not come, your last firmware release was 1.5.12 since then ARCHOS SA appears to have lost interest in its product and its customers. Your customer support is as you must know, catastrophically bad, you have done what you can to avoid publishing your address. On several occasions I have asked for email support information, but I have never had a reply.
I called your help line and was told that I should record video in 4x3 format because 16x9 on an AV 500 doesn’t work. I told them that as a broadcast cameraman it is my clients who stipulate the format, not Archos. I asked if Archos planned to release a firmware fix for this 16x9 format fault and they didn’t know. I asked if it was likely to be fixed and they said “No”.
I congratulate you on the product’s design, which is generally good. I know there have been problems but serious companies (who wish to develop a client base) usually learn the obvious lesson that they have to fix faults and look after clients’ genuine queries.

The simple truth is that you are of course a French company and as anybody who has spent any time at all in France knows to their cost, French after sales service is stunningly bad, almost non existent. Service generally is quite often insulting. As a P-DG can you tell me how a country that manages great innovative design seems incapable of offering service or repair? All my camera and broadcast equipment is necessarily repaired abroad. I have learned the hard way not to trust French Engineers to get it right, to misdiagnose, lose parts or simply cheat on repairs.
ARCHOS SA is discussed on the internet in the most derogatory terms. Does Archos SA have to take such little care? What do you intend to do to rectify this? Can you tell those of your clients who appear to have misplaced their trust in an ARCHOS SA firmware fix, that you will produce one very soon?

Yours sincerely
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zmiq2
post Sep 26 2006, 11:25 AM
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Stedi,

are you still selling your unit?
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Paris7
post Oct 2 2006, 02:26 PM
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Wrote to Henri Crohas (Archos CEO) Sept 26th - So far no reply. 6th October.... Still no reply

QUOTE(Paris7 @ Sep 26 2006, 07:17 PM)
ARCHOS SA
Henri Crohas, P-DG
12 rue Ampère,
91430 Igny
France
[COLOR=blue]

        26/9/06
Dear Mr Crohas,
Archos AV 500 30 Gig numbers F053706531 and F05403697
I purchased both these AV 500 player recorders at FNAC Les Halles Paris in May 2006 for my professional work. I understood that they would support an Archos camera - that was withdrawn from the market; I also understood from your own specifications that the Archos AV 500 recorded and supported the 16x9 format. It does not record or display 16x9 format video.
Several of us in Broadcast television have been waiting for a firmware fix to this factory fault. It has not come, your last firmware release was 1.5.12  since then ARCHOS SA appears to have lost interest in its product and its customers.  Your customer support is as you must know, catastrophically bad, you have done what you can to avoid publishing your address.  On several occasions I have asked for email support information, but I have never had a reply.
I called your help line and was told that I should record video in 4x3 format because 16x9 on an AV 500 doesn’t work. I told them that as a broadcast cameraman it is my clients who stipulate the format, not Archos. I asked if Archos planned to release a firmware fix for this 16x9 format fault and they didn’t know. I asked if it was likely to be fixed and they said “No”.
I congratulate you on the product’s design, which is generally good. I know there have been problems but serious companies (who wish to develop a client base) usually learn the obvious lesson that they have to fix faults and look after clients’ genuine queries.

The simple truth is that you are of course a French company and as anybody who has spent any time at all in France knows to their cost, French after sales service is stunningly bad, almost non existent. Service generally is quite often insulting. As a P-DG can you tell me how a country that manages great innovative design seems incapable of offering service or repair? All my camera and broadcast equipment is necessarily repaired abroad. I have learned the hard way not to trust French Engineers to get it right, to misdiagnose, lose parts or simply cheat on repairs.
ARCHOS SA is discussed on the internet in the most derogatory terms. Does Archos SA have to take such little care? What do you intend to do to rectify this? Can you tell those of your clients who appear to have misplaced their trust in an ARCHOS SA firmware fix, that you will produce one very soon?

Yours sincerely
*
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Steadi
post Oct 9 2006, 07:49 PM
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Hi All

Just to keep you posted I returned my AV500 to dixons even though it was beyond their money back period I cited the sale of goods act as the product would not support 16by9 and to be honest the sales staff diddnt seem too surprised.

I was assured by Arcos UK that the new 604 had cured our aspect ratio problems and so I managed to grab one cheap from ebay about a month ago.

Archos have made a slightly backward step by forcing customers to buy various docks, and this has slowed me down also as I've had to wait for the travel dock to become available.

I've been playing tonight as the dock finally arrived and the new Archos is a fantastic piece of kit. The screen is larger and perfect for our purposes, and the keys and menus are far better.

Only one snag...

Yup, you guessed it... Archos 16 by 9 is cropped and distorted.

Once again the 604 loses about 10% of data from both top and bottom of screen, then for some reason stretches the remaining picture back vertically in order to fit the archos screen.

I tried recording a DVD tonight and their version of 2.35:1 has even worse problems... a huge amount of the image is lost from top and bottom anf the picture is then stretched back to an approximate 2.35:1 giving that now familiar hall of mirrors effect.

Had a go at recording Gladiator in both formats and chubby old Russell Crowe not only looks emaciated but also has no hair or chin in his close ups!

The only way to use this device without affecting the original framing is to record in 4x3. I had hoped to then display in 16 by 9 but again the Archos software lopps off the top and bottom of frame and displays a distorted image.

I cant tell what happens if the Archos recording is displayed on a TV as Archos have been very cunning, the travel dock is input only... no AV out (which you dont find out till you buy one) and I'll be damned is I'm forking out for the full AV dock until I really need it.

This is all Veeeeery frustrating as the 406 is otherwise a beautiful piece of kit. They've cured the tiny record window problem and made the graphics optional, you see a full size image of the AV source as soon as it is plugged in.

Once you tweek the power saving options to keep the backlight on it is far better than the predecessorsand as long as you stick to 4x3 it is quite servicable as a mini colour viewfinder.

I will probobly keep this one, and use it as a 4x3 recorder, 16x9 may also be usable for film as around 20% of headroom is generally outside the ground glass and ignored.

I am posting this message on the forum in the hope that the boffins at Archos will see the errors of their ways and maybe produce a firmware update to give full frame and un-distorted aspect ratios.

It is quite ludicrous that Archos continue to advertise 16 by 9 ratios when the DVR's clearly cannot support the ratio without slicing off chunks of the picture.

Even if used for more domestic purposes it is unlikely that the 604 will be used to record 'Richard and Judy' It is more likely to be used by movie buffs who will be similarly disappointed by the distorted images.

Come on Archos, please sort yourselves out and fix this software!
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Paris7
post Oct 17 2006, 09:02 AM
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QUOTE(Steadi @ Oct 10 2006, 05:49 AM)
Hi All

Just to keep you posted I returned my AV500 to dixons even though it was beyond their money back period  I cited the sale of goods act as the product would not support 16by9 and to be honest the sales staff diddnt seem too surprised.

I was assured by Arcos UK that the new 604 had cured our aspect ratio problems and so I managed to grab one cheap from ebay about a month ago.

Archos have made a slightly backward step by forcing customers to buy various docks, and this has slowed me down also as I've had to wait for the travel dock to become available.

I've been playing tonight as the dock finally arrived and the new Archos is a fantastic piece of kit.  The screen is larger and perfect for our purposes, and the keys and menus are far better.

Only one snag...

Yup, you guessed it... Archos 16 by 9  is cropped and distorted.

Once again the 604 loses about 10% of data from both top and bottom of screen, then for some reason stretches the remaining picture back vertically in order to fit the archos screen.

I tried recording a DVD tonight and their version of 2.35:1 has even worse problems... a huge amount of the image is lost from top and bottom anf the picture is then stretched back to an approximate 2.35:1 giving that now familiar hall of mirrors effect.

Had a go at recording Gladiator in both formats and chubby old Russell Crowe not only looks emaciated but also has no hair or chin in his close ups!

The only way to use this device without affecting the original framing is to record in 4x3.  I had hoped to then display in 16 by 9 but again the Archos software lopps off the top and bottom of frame and displays a distorted image.

I cant tell what happens if the Archos recording is displayed on a TV as Archos have been very cunning, the travel dock is input only... no AV out (which you dont find out till you buy one) and I'll be damned is I'm forking out for the full AV dock until I really need it.

This is all Veeeeery frustrating as the 406 is otherwise a beautiful piece of kit.  They've cured the tiny record window problem and made the graphics optional, you see a full size image of the AV source as soon as it is plugged in. 

Once you tweek the power saving options to keep the backlight on it is far better than the predecessorsand as long as you stick to 4x3 it is quite servicable as a mini colour viewfinder.

I will probobly keep this one, and use it as a 4x3 recorder, 16x9 may also be usable for film as around 20% of headroom is generally outside the ground glass and ignored.

I am posting this message on the forum in the hope that the boffins at Archos will see the errors of their ways and maybe produce a firmware update to give full frame and un-distorted aspect ratios.

It is quite ludicrous that Archos continue to advertise 16 by 9 ratios when the DVR's clearly cannot support the ratio without slicing off chunks of the picture. 

Even if used for more domestic purposes it is unlikely that the 604 will be used to record 'Richard and Judy'  It is more likely to be used by movie buffs who will be similarly disappointed by the distorted images.

Come on Archos, please sort yourselves out and fix this software!
*


I don't think there is a chance Stedi

I Wrote to Henri Crohas (Archos CEO) Sept 26th - So far no reply. ....6th October.... Still no reply ....... 17th October .... still no reply.
[COLOR=red]
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Paris7
post Oct 28 2006, 12:01 PM
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QUOTE(Paris7 @ Oct 17 2006, 07:02 PM)
QUOTE(Steadi @ Oct 10 2006, 05:49 AM)
Hi All

Just to keep you posted I returned my AV500 to dixons even though it was beyond their money back period  I cited the sale of goods act as the product would not support 16by9 and to be honest the sales staff diddnt seem too surprised.

I was assured by Arcos UK that the new 604 had cured our aspect ratio problems and so I managed to grab one cheap from ebay about a month ago.

Archos have made a slightly backward step by forcing customers to buy various docks, and this has slowed me down also as I've had to wait for the travel dock to become available.

I've been playing tonight as the dock finally arrived and the new Archos is a fantastic piece of kit.  The screen is larger and perfect for our purposes, and the keys and menus are far better.

Only one snag...

Yup, you guessed it... Archos 16 by 9  is cropped and distorted.

Once again the 604 loses about 10% of data from both top and bottom of screen, then for some reason stretches the remaining picture back vertically in order to fit the archos screen.

I tried recording a DVD tonight and their version of 2.35:1 has even worse problems... a huge amount of the image is lost from top and bottom anf the picture is then stretched back to an approximate 2.35:1 giving that now familiar hall of mirrors effect.

Had a go at recording Gladiator in both formats and chubby old Russell Crowe not only looks emaciated but also has no hair or chin in his close ups!

The only way to use this device without affecting the original framing is to record in 4x3.  I had hoped to then display in 16 by 9 but again the Archos software lopps off the top and bottom of frame and displays a distorted image.

I cant tell what happens if the Archos recording is displayed on a TV as Archos have been very cunning, the travel dock is input only... no AV out (which you dont find out till you buy one) and I'll be damned is I'm forking out for the full AV dock until I really need it.

This is all Veeeeery frustrating as the 406 is otherwise a beautiful piece of kit.  They've cured the tiny record window problem and made the graphics optional, you see a full size image of the AV source as soon as it is plugged in. 

Once you tweek the power saving options to keep the backlight on it is far better than the predecessorsand as long as you stick to 4x3 it is quite servicable as a mini colour viewfinder.

I will probobly keep this one, and use it as a 4x3 recorder, 16x9 may also be usable for film as around 20% of headroom is generally outside the ground glass and ignored.

I am posting this message on the forum in the hope that the boffins at Archos will see the errors of their ways and maybe produce a firmware update to give full frame and un-distorted aspect ratios.

It is quite ludicrous that Archos continue to advertise 16 by 9 ratios when the DVR's clearly cannot support the ratio without slicing off chunks of the picture. 

Even if used for more domestic purposes it is unlikely that the 604 will be used to record 'Richard and Judy'  It is more likely to be used by movie buffs who will be similarly disappointed by the distorted images.

Come on Archos, please sort yourselves out and fix this software!
*


I don't think there is a chance Stedi

I Wrote to Henri Crohas (Archos CEO) Sept 26th - So far no reply. ....6th October.... Still no reply ....... 17th October .... still no reply.

*




Wrote to Henri Crohas (Archos CEO) Sept 26th - So far no reply..... 6th October.... Still no reply....... 27th October ? No, nothing in the way of a reply so far.

Ah! A firmware update... 1.5.13 ..... YES.....at last! ...... Hang on..does it address the ghastly AV500 and AV604 16x9 record problems ? Are we joking? No of course it doesn't.
[COLOR=red]

[COLOR=blue]Henri my son, what do you think we are? You don't care do you? Why don't you get yourself equipped with a Customer Service department at ARCHOS? A will to look after customers? If you can't afford to employ a secretary why not learn to write yourself? Reply in French or German if that helps, I'll translate it for you.
23rd November 2006 and Still no reply from anyone at Archos
mad.gif
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