Grey bars when watching video that doesn't match screen size when "use limited color range" setting is disabled

Assuming Brian means me as ‘expert’ I have to say it’s a while since I did my head in with the full/limited issue. I do remember that Kodi article wasn’t very helpful in our case. I have never seen grey bars on my TV.

Anyway, thanks for the datapoints. I’ll have a look when I’m home after Christmas.

Enjoy your Christmas - I’m surprised by the number of people happy to help out in what’s always a busy time of year. :smiley:

Discussion here has at the very least led me to a way that I can watch these videos without the bars. Even if I have to fuss with settings to do so, it’s an improvement.

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Is the problem not that the video width is not divisible by 8?

I’ve actually only tried video widths divisible by 8.

Usually 1920, sometimes 1280. It’s the heights that are non-standard.

Sorry for necro, but it’s a shame that this topic suddenly ended as I have this exact same issue.

TV, Receiver are both set to HDMI Full range/Enhanced, with Kodi in limited range, the bars are black. With Kodi limited range disabled, the bars go grey and the Kodi interface seems to lose a lot of contrast and colour. The video playing does have the correct colours though, but the grey bars are very distracting. I’m playing 4:3 videos at the moment, so the bars are to be expected, but Kodi does not give out the correct range for its own interface and thus also not for the black bars.

Currently I’m just running limited range, but would like to have it running properly.
I have Sony AF9/A9F OLED, 4k HDR10 and Dolby Vision (no HDR10+)
The Vero 4k is connected to my receiver, Sony STR-DN1080.

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The proper setting for you is likely to be running in limited range, as it would be for most people outputting to a TV. It would be highly unlikely the 4:3 video’s your playing where mastered full range anyway so even if you were able to get this working there would be no extra color information there to be gained. This setting does not affect HDR. If you really want to run it this way you may be able to use a whitelist to output to 4:3 content in 4:3 so the bars are generated by your TV instead of Kodi. You can find more information about them here…

Anyone get to the bottom of this? Afraid of causing a burn in watching a movie for 2hrs.
Letterboxing is grey, actual video has proper blacks.

Tried limited range: just made the actual video grey too.

Tried force rgb, 422, no difference.

Lg oled
Did not happen/notice on previous lg led lcd

Edit: all other input to the tv are absolutely fine btw.
Edit2: HDR videos seem to be ok

Limited range with YCC output should ‘just work’. What content are you playing? Can you post mediainfo?

And have a look here

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Thanks for that, good article. How do I enable YCC?
Still strange that some content is ok; and for content that isn’t - the video itself has perfect blacks; only the letterboxing is grey.

Not sure what mediainfo you need or how to get it? I don’t want to get into the logs like other users, if it didn’t solve the problem for them it won’t be any different for me

I read from another thread, Vero 4K+ LG C8 Letterbox are Dark Grey and Macroblocking - Help and Support - OSMC Forums, that the next build may not have the issue anyway.

Thanks again!

definitely doing something wrong trying to get the YCC support info: tvservice: command not found

Vero: Settings->System->Display->Force RGB output OFF
Pi: hdmi_pixel_encoding YCbCr limited in config.txt (but Pi shouldn’t have the issue anyway)

Ah thanks. well that is off. How can I get the mediainfo you need?

I’m starting to think it is nothing to do with these video settings. More to do with UI background? Any time some UI form is loading and so nothing is visible, I get the same grey background.

It would be good if we could find out more about the file you are having issues playing.

Please let us know the mediainfo of the file which you either can create:

  1. By uploading the file to
  2. Login to OSMC via ssh and Install mediainfo sudo apt-get install mediainfo and then run mediainfo <File>

Afterwards share the info here using </> format button.

Thx for your help.

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Don’t know what is going on with that link though; says I need to login - pops up window which shows that I am logged in, then nothing changes.


Format : Matroska
Format version : Version 4
File size : 8.53 GiB
Duration : 1 h 38 min
Overall bit rate mode : Variable
Overall bit rate : 12.4 Mb/s
Encoded date : UTC 2021-01-16 11:41:45
Writing application : mkvmerge v31.0.0 (‘Dolores In A Shoestand’) 64-bit
Writing library : libebml v1.3.6 + libmatroska v1.4.9

ID : 1
Format : AVC
Format/Info : Advanced Video Codec
Format profile : High@L4.1
Format settings : CABAC / 5 Ref Frames
Format settings, CABAC : Yes
Format settings, ReFrames : 5 frames
Duration : 1 h 38 min
Bit rate : 10.5 Mb/s
Width : 1 920 pixels
Height : 804 pixels
Display aspect ratio : 2.40:1
Frame rate mode : Constant
Frame rate : 23.976 (24000/1001) FPS
Color space : YUV
Chroma subsampling : 4:2:0
Bit depth : 8 bits
Scan type : Progressive
Bits/(Pixel*Frame) : 0.285
Stream size : 7.23 GiB (85%)
Writing library : x264 core 161 r3027 4121277
Encoding settings : cabac=1 / ref=5 / deblock=1:-3:-3 / analyse=0x3:0x133 / me=umh / subme=9 / psy=1 / psy_rd=1.00:0.00 / mixed_ref=1 / me_range=16 / chroma_me=1 / trellis=2 / 8x8dct=1 / cqm=0 / deadzone=21,11 / fast_pskip=0 / chroma_qp_offset=-2 / threads=25 / lookahead_threads=2 / sliced_threads=0 / nr=0 / decimate=1 / interlaced=0 / bluray_compat=0 / constrained_intra=0 / bframes=3 / b_pyramid=2 / b_adapt=2 / b_bias=0 / direct=3 / weightb=1 / open_gop=0 / weightp=2 / keyint=250 / keyint_min=23 / scenecut=40 / intra_refresh=0 / rc_lookahead=60 / rc=crf / mbtree=1 / crf=17.0 / qcomp=0.60 / qpmin=0 / qpmax=69 / qpstep=4 / ip_ratio=1.40 / aq=1:1.00
Language : English
Default : Yes
Forced : No

ID : 2
Format : DTS XLL
Format/Info : Digital Theater Systems
Commercial name : DTS-HD Master Audio
Codec ID : A_DTS
Duration : 1 h 38 min
Bit rate mode : Variable
Bit rate : 1 868 kb/s
Channel(s) : 6 channels
Channel layout : C L R Ls Rs LFE
Sampling rate : 48.0 kHz
Frame rate : 93.750 FPS (512 SPF)
Bit depth : 16 bits
Compression mode : Lossless
Stream size : 1.28 GiB (15%)
Language : English
Default : Yes
Forced : No

ID : 3
Format : PGS
Muxing mode : zlib
Codec ID/Info : Picture based subtitle format used on BDs/HD-DVDs
Duration : 1 h 36 min
Bit rate : 47.7 kb/s
Count of elements : 3762
Stream size : 32.9 MiB (0%)
Language : German
Default : No
Forced : No

00:00:00.000 : en:Chapter 01
00:06:11.496 : en:Chapter 02
00:14:29.535 : en:Chapter 03
00:22:18.003 : en:Chapter 04
00:34:04.334 : en:Chapter 05
00:40:25.173 : en:Chapter 06
00:45:56.629 : en:Chapter 07
00:54:48.368 : en:Chapter 08
01:03:15.625 : en:Chapter 09
01:15:09.088 : en:Chapter 10
01:27:42.966 : en:Chapter 11
01:33:36.319 : en:Chapter 12

Just to confirm, as I’m not sure anyone has directly acknowledged; this is ONLY the letterboxing; the “black” bars above and below the video are actually grey.

The video itself has the blackest of blacks.

If I enable the limited range, then the video itself no longer has the blackest blacks, instead it is also grey.

All we need is for the letterboxing to ALSO be black as well as the video which already is.

@herculainn1, yes, my problem seems the same as yours. Your video is also not a standard size (it has likely been cropped from a 1080p source), and the empty space outside the video frame is showing the wrong color.

I also get perfect blacks in the video.
If your tv has a “limited range” setting somewhere, you could try turning that on in addition to turning on kodi’s limited range setting. For me that makes the grey bars black, but for me it also messes up HDR video.

Really hoping the fix in the next release solves this long standing annoyance. At least there seems to be some acknowledgement that this is actually a bug.

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That doesn’t sound right. For me, using YCC and limited throughout works with SDR and HDR. All three of my screens expect limited range when sending YCC. One of them offers full range but only for RGB. There are so many variables, that’s why I wrote this. If you have a moment, could you read through that and let us know which bits of it don’t match your experience. And what do mean by ‘messes up HDR video’? Is this with sending HDR to an HDR screen or to to a SDR screen?

Hey, yep, I experimented with the black/dark levels on the TV to get closer but it all just kills the quality of the video, and is never “black-black”
For me I can just play the same file via my PC instead; but would be great to be keep it all in one place on the Vero4kp.

We will need a gofundme to get you an LG c8/c9 :stuck_out_tongue:

Hence the warning in my Howto - don’t try to correct a quantisation range issue with the black level controls.

Why would I want a TV that doesn’t work when I have a Panasonic that does :stuck_out_tongue:

But seriously, the next release will be different and it would be good if you can bear with us,

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