Fixing the screen resolution on my Comcast HD tuner

A couple weeks ago, Robin and I took a look at some of our bills and realized we were over-paying for several of our basics. We had TV and Internet through Comcast, and phone service with AT&T. By bringing the phone over to Comcast, we cut our monthly costs for the three services in half. We also got rid of the Comcast DVR in the bedroom – it was costing $15/month and as I’d mentioned on more than one occasion, I despised the DVR with every fiber of my being.

I had a Comcast HD tuner in the family room that we only used for On Demand – which, thanks to TiVo, we rarely used. So I took that tuner up into the bedroom, hooked it up to the TV, and we were all set.

Well, almost. Robin pointed out tonight that “faces seem to be sort of stretched” ever since I switched tuners. Sure enough, the screen resolution was off – even though we have an HD TV, the screen was showing up letterboxed. I clicked “Menu” on the Comcast remote, and found no settings that would change how the signal was sent to the TV. A little bit of Googling showed this site walking through changing the settings for the Comcast DVR (which in my case didn’t apply, but the solution worked for me nonetheless).

In its eminent wisdom, Comcast hides things like, oh, screen resolution, in a hidden menu that’s only accessible when the tuner is turned off. Yeah, I know.

So after you turn it off, you hit menu. (Get that? Turn it off in order to configure it.) Then look for screen resolution, and force it to 16:9. Now turn it back on, and presto!

Come to think of it, this makes me wonder whether my prior run-ins with the DVR were all because I failed to turn it off before using it. At the very least, it would have caused me less stress had it been turned off.