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19 posts

Geek
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  # 2223150 24-Apr-2019 12:32
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Wash:

 

sm1ff: Neon has told me it has a maximum bitrate of 1800 kbps and in HD.
I have so far refused to sign up to it and cannot comment on its service quality as I have seen many many comments everywhere on the internet that it's very poor.
I also download content that neon has the rights to only because I can get usually at least 10mb/s bitrate at full 1080p and it includes 5.1 surround sound. This is often with the label AMZN.


 

NEON's max bitrate is actually ~5800kbps for 1080p quality, especially for titles like GoT.

 

 

Has anyone done any tests? That seems awfully high. If so has that changed recently?

 

I streamed GoT last season via Neon and it definitely wasn't that high a bitrate. I would imagine it would be close to the 1800 Kbps that the previous poster mentioned. It was full of heavy macro blocking. The sound was quite poor, definitely not the 640 Kbps that you get from Amazon Video. 

 

I decided to "acquire" some Amazon Prime rips which have a bitrate of around 7200 Kbps. If Neon is getting close to that like you say, then I will be signing up again, as there are plenty of other great shows too which I would like to watch. 

 

 


3528 posts

Uber Geek
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  # 2223152 24-Apr-2019 12:43
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I watched the first episode of the new GOT series on my iPad via Neon... good experience.

 

It's an iPad so my hopes weren't exactly high, still it was more than fine.

 

The second episode was watched via the same iPad and streamed to my ATV3 and played back on my VT plasma... and I was more than happy.

 

The blacks were fine, the motion was fine - I was actually assuming it would be a cluster.

 

It wasn't.

 

Happy days.


 
 
 
 


57 posts

Master Geek
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  # 2223230 24-Apr-2019 15:39
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JimmyD:

 

Wash:

 

sm1ff: Neon has told me it has a maximum bitrate of 1800 kbps and in HD.
I have so far refused to sign up to it and cannot comment on its service quality as I have seen many many comments everywhere on the internet that it's very poor.
I also download content that neon has the rights to only because I can get usually at least 10mb/s bitrate at full 1080p and it includes 5.1 surround sound. This is often with the label AMZN.


 

NEON's max bitrate is actually ~5800kbps for 1080p quality, especially for titles like GoT.

 

 

Has anyone done any tests? That seems awfully high. If so has that changed recently?

 

I streamed GoT last season via Neon and it definitely wasn't that high a bitrate. I would imagine it would be close to the 1800 Kbps that the previous poster mentioned. It was full of heavy macro blocking. The sound was quite poor, definitely not the 640 Kbps that you get from Amazon Video. 

 

I decided to "acquire" some Amazon Prime rips which have a bitrate of around 7200 Kbps. If Neon is getting close to that like you say, then I will be signing up again, as there are plenty of other great shows too which I would like to watch. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nope, no change recently. When HD was introduced on NEON, the top bitrate changed from 1800kbps to 5800kbps and that persists today. You can see the bitrates available in the manifest files.

 

 

 

Just because there are higher bitrates available doesn't mean your device is playing those bitrates. The choice of bitrate the player will choose is based on a number of parameters, most notably:

 

- Network throughput. If it can't keep the buffer full, it'll scale down to a lower bitrate. That is end-to-end throughput. Having a 1Gig fibre connection is worthless if your chromecast is on wifi and has poor signal or the wifi is congested.

 

- CPU. If the device hasn't sufficient CPU power it'll choose a lower bitrate

 

- Memory. If the device is low on memory, it'll often have to choose a lower bitrate

 

 

 

Players make these decisions in different ways and will move between bitrates using different strategies. Some start at a very low bitrate and slowly ramp up the rates as throughput proves to be sufficient. Some will almost immediately jump to the highest available and may then need to scale back which isn't always a smooth process.

 

 

 

Also, if for some reason, your device is choosing an intermediate bitrate that not many people use, there can be congestion in the CDN trying to retrieve the files for that bitrate from the origin and caching them so you can end up with the CDN holding you up just because your device is trying to play a bitrate that noone else in your region has played. Netflix have their own custom built methods to avoid these sorts of issues by specifically pushing content out to their appliances in the ISP datacentres in all the most common formats and bitrates so that there shouldn't be a need to go back to the origin.

 

 

 

I've been rewatching season 7 and the quality has been good. No image issues, good contrast, no buffering, fast playback start etc. I've not started on season 8 yet but should be shortly.

 

 

 

Finally, if you're on cellular there can be traffic shaping affecting your traffic, especially if you have a Vodafone Video Pass or similar where they reserve the right to cap your bandwidth.

 

 

 

Video delivery over the internet is far more complex than many people give credit for and it involves quite a few steps in the chain. For best results, use a hard wired connection or at least make sure your wifi is on an uncongested channel and your device has a good strong signal.


7 posts

Wannabe Geek
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  # 2227541 29-Apr-2019 17:53
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Has anybody here experienced issues with mono audio output using Neon? I had issues about a Year ago using a Chromecast Ultra and I've recently re-subscribed to watch the latest series of Game of Thrones and the DC shows and the issue is still present. My Chromecast is connected to an Integra amplifier running to a Panasonic Viera TV. I have never had any issues with TVNZ on Demand or Three Now which are both stereo or Youtube with the Chromecast. Netflix plays back in Dolby Digital + through the Chromecast without issue as well or stereo with Pro Logic IIx for 2ch content.

 

The latest season of Game of Thrones has been stereo this time, however all the latest DC series have been mono. I've watched up to episode 3 of The Flash and just watched episode 1 of Legend of Tomorrow with them all producing mono audio. Game of Thrones doesn't really sound quite right though, its almost like the audio is slightly out of sync with each channel so you get weird warping type sound when using Pro Logic IIx, the DC shows only play back on the centre speaker which is why I know it is in mono given there is no information for the amp to work with the apply Pro Logic IIx to function correctly.

 

I do have a media pc running through the amp but I can't use Neon on the PC through the web browser given its using Flash player, the PC doesn't have enough CPU grunt to decode the video. Flash doesn't seem to use the GPU to accelerate the video.

 

I can't be certain but I believe the audio may have been mono when using my Samsung TV through headphones, I didn't notice any stereo sound when playing a show recently which makes me think it may not be the Chromecast that is the issue but the videos themselves being provided by Neon. Will do more testing and try and confirm that.

 

Really annoying issue, no reason to have audio in mono in 2019!


2 posts

Wannabe Geek


  # 2236436 14-May-2019 09:48
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I've pretty much had it with Neon - the high cost compared to others, the shockingly bad quality on their iphone/ipad apps - and am strongly thinking about switching over to Amazon Prime (I've already got Netflix). For those who've had Amazon Prime, how does it compare to Neon? I've never had any problems with the quality of Netflix streaming on tv/apps, but Neon has been so shoddy for me I'm a little worried about the quality of other services I haven't tried. 


19 posts

Geek
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  # 2236546 14-May-2019 12:06
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Kidgrain:

I've pretty much had it with Neon - the high cost compared to others, the shockingly bad quality on their iphone/ipad apps - and am strongly thinking about switching over to Amazon Prime (I've already got Netflix). For those who've had Amazon Prime, how does it compare to Neon? I've never had any problems with the quality of Netflix streaming on tv/apps, but Neon has been so shoddy for me I'm a little worried about the quality of other services I haven't tried. 



Amazon Prime streams in high quality and I have found the apps to be bug free. That’s about all it has going for it unfortunately.

Other than a few Amazon originals, there’s not a lot to watch. Neon has it beat, well and truly. I had Amazon for almost a year and the content did not change much at all. It was the same movies and shows the entire time. No new movies were added. The selection of movies were terrible. There’s not many (far less than Netflix and Neon) and half of them are D grade nonsense that seem to have $10,000 budgets. What quality movies it did have I could find on Netflix anyway. The thing that pissed me off the most was the inconsistencies with subtitles. For instance I tried to watch Kill Bill 2 and about a third of the way through the film, it is set in China and there are many scenes in Chinese. I had to stop watching as there were no subtitles available.

They also do this other really annoying thing because they lack content. They will advertise a new original series as available to watch when it isn’t available. For a year it shoved Jack Ryan down my throat with “watch the new series now”. So you go to watch it and it only has a trailer available. It was there for almost a year. They do it with every other new series too.

It’s clear that they just don’t care about their overseas markets. They made that abundantly clear when they first launched. The app was only available on iOS and Android even though they had apps for PS4, PS3, Xbox One and Xbox 360. They didn’t make those other apps available for months. Compare that with Netflix, who made all their apps available to us on all platforms the day they launched in NZ. I ended up signing up for an American PS4 account just so I could download the Amazon Video app from the American store. It worked perfectly and just proved that Amazon didn’t give a toss about us.

My suggestion is to see if there’s any originals that you want to see and if there are, just binge them. You could probably get through them all within a month or two and save your money.

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  # 2236586 14-May-2019 12:14
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Kidgrain:

 

I've pretty much had it with Neon - the high cost compared to others, the shockingly bad quality on their iphone/ipad apps - and am strongly thinking about switching over to Amazon Prime (I've already got Netflix). For those who've had Amazon Prime, how does it compare to Neon? I've never had any problems with the quality of Netflix streaming on tv/apps, but Neon has been so shoddy for me I'm a little worried about the quality of other services I haven't tried. 

 

 

 

 

There is SFA content for the NZ market sadly.

 

 

 

I had it for a bit and cancelled. I now have it for "free" with 2Degrees so I have reactivated it in order to watch Good Omens at the end of this month. I couldn't find anything else on there to watch...





.

1632 posts

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  # 2236617 14-May-2019 12:54
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I’m watching Monk (real old one), Hanna, the magicians.

Has some old movies I’ll watch to for Amazon Prime as well.
Have it free with 2degrees but they don’t seem to come out with new content as much as Netflix, so could run out of stuff to watch in future.

I’m happy with content on Neon, $20 seems to give all the movies on Sky movies, and most of SoHo,
I’m happy with 720p picture, it’s the sound that is the big let down as mentioned which is why I don’t bother with it.

889 posts

Ultimate Geek
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  # 2236659 14-May-2019 13:05
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I’ve subscribed to US Amazon Prime occasionally. Technically it’s superb, but content is lacking. I’ve tried to like it, I’ve owned my Fire TV for almost 5 years, it’s a wonderful Amazon product that ironically streams very little Amazon content. The pay per view movie selection is very good, but Prime videos are few and far between, even the US version. Perhaps I’m just not their target market. Much prefer to do stuff than passively vegetate.

I did however enjoy the series on the All Blacks, a wee bit of The Grand Tour with my kids, a wee bit of The man on the high castle and Sneaky Pete (until there were too many not so feel good scenes) and some documentaries about my church.

US Netflix and YouTube still rule the screen in my house of 4 kids and 2 adults, in 3rd place is ESPN+

Also had Hulu, Neon and Lightbox once upon a time. The series I liked on those are also on Netflix.


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Uber Geek
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  # 2238749 16-May-2019 07:52
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The new CEO of Sky has even said himself he thinks their streaming service is poor, going so far as to bag it himself:

 

https://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=12214820

 

His comments appear to reflect a lot of the feedback in this thread!

 

(The Spinoff did a story on it too: https://thespinoff.co.nz/media/09-04-2019/sky-tv-has-a-wild-new-strategy-stop-doing-things-its-customers-hate/)


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  # 2238754 16-May-2019 08:05
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quickymart:

 

The new CEO of Sky has even said himself he thinks their streaming service is poor, going so far as to bag it himself:

 

https://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=12214820

 

His comments appear to reflect a lot of the feedback in this thread!

 

 


IMO he is adding credibility to Sky. The usual would be a PR spin, with lots of hopes and dreams. But he seems to be on a full rebuild rather than papering over a few cracks


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  # 2238755 16-May-2019 08:05
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Yep, I reckon that's what's needed. Dropping prices will only work for a limited time.


5378 posts

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  # 2238792 16-May-2019 09:19
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Neon is faultless on our Smart TV. 

 

The only issue we have ever had is a T&C issue.  After a burglary we needed to delete a number of devices from our account - so we could add the new ones.  Neon only let's you delete one device every few weeks. 

 

When we rang and explained situation they were great and deleted the old devices.





Mike

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  # 2238807 16-May-2019 09:38
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MikeAqua:

Neon is faultless on our Smart TV. 


The only issue we have ever had is a T&C issue.  After a burglary we needed to delete a number of devices from our account - so we could add the new ones.  Neon only let's you delete one device every few weeks. 


When we rang and explained situation they were great and deleted the old devices.



How do you do the sound? Just TV speakers?

2743 posts

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  # 2239061 16-May-2019 12:10
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MikeAqua: Neon only let's you delete one device every few weeks.

 

Why does that not surprise me? Yet another example of an anti-consumer draconian restriction from the granddaddy company of anti-customer focus - how dare consumers think they can easily swap between devices to fit in with busy family lifestyles!

 

Let's hope the new CE's broom is a wide one.

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