yes, there is image lost from tv overscan, and the image is compressed making it longer than it was origionally. when you capture the image in a computer you can zoom back then replay it to tape so when you watch it on a tv you can see the edge of the image all the way around. another words the end of the image won't be defined by the end of your tv screen. once you do that, you know your tv isn't ripping off your image. then they compress the image making it longer. you can also uncompress it in the computer. my capture card does it automatically, some don't. i did it with the anamorphic opening of TOUCH OF EVIL and it's incredible what a difference it made.
my next invention will be indispensable for classic film lovers. it will be a unit that goes between the player and the tv. automatically uncompresses the picture and zooms back. of course, i won't be able to do this till i figure out how to make the maintanance free cat box.
yes, dvds rip you off also. letterboxed or not, there is more picture on the source than you are getting. i recently did a few bits of GODFATHER II in LBX, and THE SOPRANOS, was surprised, and angered by how much image i'm missing. i have 3 tvs, a large Toshiba, 2 mediums, a Phillips, and an RCA, and it's the same rip-off on all 3 sets.
it's beyond me why some one has not come up with such an invention as "The Marzol Zoom Back & Uncompress Gizmo."
i never knew about the compression thing till i saw it in a documentary. it ruined me. since then i started noticing characters when they are on certain parts of the tv screen
they are 'longer' than they are in real life.
it is nit-picky to most people, but i'm into the framing and composition much more than i am into the narraative, so for me it's heaven watching the film through the computer. it's not just 1-2-3 to window box and uncompress then play to tape, it takes time, but it can be watched in the computer while it plays and you see the whole image.
the entire film is better window boxed, but stuff like the shaving scene in KEY LARGO, the openings of TOUCH OF EVIL, and OTHELLO, the mexican village in TREASURE OF THE SIERRA MADRE, the ending castle scenes in CHIME AT MIDNIGHT are nothing short of euphoric.