Contour Display Zoom Options
I currently have the Motorola DCH3416 DVR/Recievers (non-contour). My TVs are all non-widescreen and I have no interest at all in replacing these TVs no matter what.
The Motorola DCH3416 boxes have a feature that is absolutely necessary for me. When connected to a non-widescreen TV through the composite or component connections and set for 480 Std (non-widescreen mode) output, the DCH3416 has an option in the settings menu to "zoom 16:9 pic". This allows 2.35:1 aspect ratio (ultra widescreen) movies to be cropped and zoomed so there are only relatively small black bars on the top and bottom of the non-widescreen TV instead of 2/3 of the screen being black bars without the zoom. (This is accessed in the menu, the zoom button on the remote does nothing on the Motorola box.) This works very well, and is neccessary for these movies to be watchable on non-widescreen TVs. The non-contour Cox mini-box also has this feature when connected to a non-widescreen TV through the coax. It is accessed on the mini box by pressing the zoom button on the remote twice.
Do the boxes with the Contour and Contour 2 also have a zoom that works the same way when the non-hdmi connections are used for non-widescreen TVs (4:3 480 setting)? (It is possible the settings are different when using HDMI, which is why I specified connected through composite/component and set to 4:3 480). I just want to be clear that I'm looking for a zoom and crop, NOT a stretch. (Stretch is where the people are made to look tall and squished., like a goofy funhouse mirror.) On the Motorolas, this feature only works when tuned to HD versions of the channels, but the box will convert the HD to SD for SD TVs.
This is one of the most critical factors I would need to know if I were to get Contour, as my TVs do not have a zoom of their own.