If you have a digital tuner, you can watch "HD content" on anything, including a 20 yr old TV.
With your laptop, you can view the HD material as long as you have a digital tuner (perhaps a USB HD tuner for example). Just because your laptop isn't a natively a common HD resolution, you can watch the material and because your resolution is relatively high, you won't see a loss of quality. You might end up with Black bars or pillars however since the screen size doesn't exactly match the broadcast HD resolutions.
Currently I have a very old monitor that does not go over 1280 x 768. When I download or watch an HD trailer 720i the video is outside the frame because of the resolution. So quicktime opens and shows me half the window. I cannot increase the resolution from the control panel. This is a concern. I do understand what everyone else is saying that older TV can do that.
Understand that it's not just the monitor but the video card as well that's causing you headaches. If the listed possible resolutions in control panel stop at, say, 800x600 then there's very little you can do to display widescreen content. The only possibility is a more up-to-date driver for the video card. Even though the monitor is capable of displaying 1280x768, the video card is limiting your display. Also, make sure that the monitor is recognized by your system. 90 percent of the time Windows will identify a monitor as a "plug and play monitor". See if there isn't a specific driver available on the net for the monitor. I've done this in the past to deal with similar problems.
If the stament you made above about the monitor being able to display 1280x768 is correct then, in theory, yes. I might be able to help more if I knew the specifics. What monitor and what video card are you working with?
Thanks a lot for your offer.
I want to get this tablet pc and the display specs. They do foffer the ati video option.
14.0" WXGA TFT Active Matrix (1280 x 768 max. resolution) with rotating hinge for tablet functionality
I checked the specs of this laptop and with the included embedded Intel graphics chip you can definately do widescreen HD so the ATI option is not needed.
But I am a little confused! In the previous discussions you were talking about displaying the HD trailers on an older monitor. The information I thought you would provide was the PC and monitor model information that you were having trouble with.