5 Replies Latest reply on Sep 27, 2015 9:12 AM by Jude525

    HD 4400 - HDTV underscan & poor Control Panel programming

    FalconFour

      I'm testing/configuring a build with a 4th-gen i3 with HD 4400 graphics, Windows 7 x64, an Asus MiniITX board, 256gb SSD, and face-melting sub-10s boot time. God, this machine is absolutely amazing. Except for one major flaw.

       

      I have an older Sony Grand WEGA 60" 1080i HDTV. Yes, 1080i - so motion is a little sluggish compared to a modern 1080p LCD, but it fills my living room nicely with amazing sound and presence. I've repaired it over the years and have no intention of upgrading due to this issue since this is only a test PC to be installed elsewhere (with a new display that'll work fine). Other GPUs have had no issues working with this TV's need to apply underscanning.

       

      The TV has one option in the menus for over/underscan, and it offers three options: "-1", "0", and "+1". Just "1". When I set it to "-1", which I always leave it at, the edges are still cut off everything I play on it. Significantly.

       

      When a computer throws the native resolution (1920x1080, 30hz interlaced) at it, the edges are so significantly cut off the screen that I can't access the left-most icons of the desktop, the Start button is off the screen, and the title bar of windows are cut off - I have to use Alt+F4 to close windows since I can't see "X" to click it. This makes the computer nearly unusable with their default settings. Using my TV absolutely requires a functional underscan option.

       

      AMD and nVidia both have underscan options that, with some amount of tweaking, will let me use 1080i resolution with the edges visible - software underscanning. It usually results in a custom resolution being created (1890-by-something-or-other), and in software, that creates black borders around the edges that are cropped off the physical screen. On the screen, the image is perfect and the system is completely usable.

       

      However, Intel's latest drivers (5/14/2014), bent every which way with PowerStrip and custom resolutions, will not work. Creating a custom resolution - which is an absolute NIGHTMARE in the new control panel (more on that later) - just results in a black or corrupted display and I have to blindly hit "Esc" to revert it. There is no overscan or scaling option. I literally cannot use my PC on my HDTV due to the limited functionality of the Intel control panel.

       

      2014-06-27 17.36.05.jpg
      (I just mashed the keyboard to get the error here - I wasn't actually trying to add this gibberish resolution. It does underscore the fact, though, that entries should be somehow restrained by what the driver will allow *before* making the user feel like it's ready to "add". Perhaps by shading the entry boxes red on an invalid entry?)

       

      Which leads me to the Intel control panel programming issues. This new chip seems to use a new style of control panel, completely different from the black/blue control panel on Intel chipsets I've seen in the past. The "Custom Resolutions" page, though, is the crown jewel (turd?) of buggy programming, though. I only use the "Basic" page due to not fully understanding low-level timing parameters. I enter "1920" width, "1080" height, "30" refresh, interlacing Enabled, change color depth to 32-bit (which should NOT default to "8-bit"... what's up with that? Why is this even an option in 2014?), and slide underscan over to "20%". It'll show the correct settings in the summary at the bottom, but when I click "Add" and confirm it, an invalid parameter of "30p" is sometimes added to the resolution list. Prior to clearing out the mess of custom resolutions that didn't work, I had the proper "30i" mode on a few of them, which - upon restarting the Intel driver to actually make the resolution available (another bug not found on AMD or nVidia and not mentioned in the Intel interface) - just gave me a corrupted display.

       

      That's one of the little issues, but definitely a bug, compared to a massive functional failure in the Custom Resolutions tool. If any option at all is denied (at seemingly random) by the driver, it gives me a failure message - "An invalid value has been entered". OK, I can understand that and work with it. But when I hit "OK", it erases all the values from the page and makes me re-enter *everything* in order to try again. It leaves "Interlaced" selected, but even if I switch it back and forth, it seems to ignore the option and set "p" mode even if the confirmation at the bottom of the page says "i", giving me an unusable custom resolution entry. Most combinations in the Custom Resolutions panel will result in "an invalid value has been entered", so this is a MASSIVE show-stopper, having to enter the values again each time I run into something it deems "invalid".

       

      Custom resolutions and overscan have been a problem with Intel drivers for over a decade now. Why are we still fighting with this? I actually thought Intel started taking graphics seriously, and held a lot of respect for the new CPUs/GPUs. Dealing with this issue today just knocked my respect down several pegs.

        • 1. Re: HD 4400 - HDTV underscan & poor Control Panel programming
          sylvia_intel

          Hello FalconFour, thanks for contacting us through the Intel Communities.

          Please check this picture and follow the steps in order to fix this underscan issue you are experiencing. Graphics — HDMI Technology FAQ    

          underscan.JPG

          • 2. Re: HD 4400 - HDTV underscan & poor Control Panel programming
            FalconFour

            Not very helpful - note the "Note" box under step 3. "Note: the Custom Aspect Ration sliders are not available with interlaced refresh rates like 1080i, which cannot be scaled". This may well be my exact problem - that Intel's driver somehow believes (falsely) that 1080i "can't be scaled", so it hides the option. If every other video card made by nVidia or AMD/ATI can do it, why can't Intel? I've had only minor trouble (usually just trouble getting access to their control panel) getting their drivers to scale 1080i, but always been able to do it.

             

            Sadly, the testing PC in the original post has been handed over to the customer and installed with beautifully-working VGA-connected monitors, so I don't have a way to test 720P scaling. Though I do believe I tried it before writing this post, and had the same problem that "custom aspect ratio" didn't exist as an option.

             

            One cool thing came of that post, though - I didn't know about Ctrl+Alt+F12! Just tried it on my laptop (4-series Intel graphics, driver 8.15.10.2555) and it brought up the Intel control panel. Since my desktop context menu launcher is missing (only shows the "graphics options" flyout), I've had to "run" ifgxcpl.cpl in the past to get it to open. Learned a useful new keyboard shortcut

            • 3. Re: HD 4400 - HDTV underscan & poor Control Panel programming
              PanamaPat

              FalconFour,

               

              I've had the exact same frustrating issue you experienced with the integrated graphics chip (Intel 4400HD) that was part of my new Dell 3647 small footprint PC that I'm using as a media center with an older Sony KDF-55WF655.  This TV supports 1920x1080i, but using this resolution with the Intel video chip results in overscan as you have experienced as well.  This new Dell replaced an older HP Media Center that had an Nvidia chip that included overscan compensation in the driver, but the intel does not at this resolution.  Why Intel has not solved this issue for interlaced resolutions is frustrating.

               

              I accidentally discovered a solution, that may (or may not) work for you.

               

              First I downloaded the most current driver from Intel.

               

              I then set the resolution at the highest resolution that was not interlaced and by doing so, I could then take advantage of the Custom Aspect Ratio settings in the Intel driver.  For some reason, once the intel driver sees a resolution that is interlaced, the Custom Aspect Ration settings located under the Display General Settings no longer is visible.  Setting a lower resolution that is not interlaced allowed me to then set the Custom Aspect Ratio that eliminated the overscan.  But, this was not ideal as I had to settle for a lower resolution than the 1920x1080i.

               

              I was ready to accept this lower resolution compromise when I discovered, by accident, that I could preserved the Custom Aspect Ratio at the higher resolution.  I switched  to the higher 1920x1080i resolution (after I had set the Custom Aspect Ratio using lower resolution non-interlaced).  The key was to switch to the higher resolution not using the intel control panel.  Instead right click on desktop, select Screen Resolution, click Advanced Settings, click List All Modes, and pick the higher 1920x1080i.  Miraculously, it kept the Custom Aspect Ratio and I no longer have overscan issue.

               

              Let me know if this work for you.

               

              BTW- don't go back to the intel driver settings, as doing so will undo the Custom Aspect Ratio at the 1920x1080i resolution.

               

              Pat

              • 4. Re: HD 4400 - HDTV underscan & poor Control Panel programming
                FalconFour

                Sweet, a bug in the Intel drivers that's actually useful! That's the same model TV I have (KDF-60WF655, the 60" version!), and though I don't have the affected PC to test with, stands to reason it'd work in my case as well as anyone else with the overscan problem. I know Intel's completely full of crap saying that interlaced modes can't underscan, but the trick was getting the UI to allow it. I never even saw it offer me the underscan options, but I didn't know about that arbitrary limitation at the time so never tried lower resolutions.

                 

                Hopefully that info helps out some other people with the same problem - and in a dream world, it'd be nice if that info would be passed along to get this issue fixed at the driver-development level. Hope all our documentation here doesn't just fall on Google's ears, but Intel's as well. Thanks!

                • 5. Re: HD 4400 - HDTV underscan & poor Control Panel programming
                  Jude525

                  Thank you, thank you, thank you! It's over a year since your post and Intel's controls still don't have a simple solution to this problem. I am running Windows on my Mac Mini and experienced the same over-scanning problem on my Sony Bravia, both under Mac and Windows. The solution under the Mac was relatively simple, but I've been looking for solutions on the Windows side for months. I was actually about to follow one possible solution that involved diving into the bowels of the registry. So glad that I found this instead. In this day and age with the plethora of displays available, assuming that your monitor/tv will fit the standard is pretty foolish. I've run into this problem before on other configurations, but always with NVidia graphics. It was always an easy adjustment.

                   

                  Anyway, thanks for this answer and its usefulness at this late date