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Topic # 42733 9-Oct-2009 13:46
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Hi all, my first post. I am subscribed to SKY and have a HD LCD TV. I have been thinking about installing either MYSKYHDi and / or Freeview UHF HD. I would be grateful if someone could advise me on the following:

 

Do you think the quality of the SKY HD pictures is as good as those on Freeview HD?

 

Are all Freeview HD programs now available on SKY in HD also?

 

I see there is a 24-hour expiry time / time limit for watching some SKY content, such as “On Demand” and “SKY Box Office”. Is there a time limit for watching HD movies recorded as part of the normal monthly movie subscription?

 

Can you record SKY HD programs on an external blu-ray recorder, such as the new 500gig Panasonic DMRBW850GZK?

 

Can you transfer all non HD SKY programs from the MYSKYHDi hard drive to DVDs?

 

What is the size of the MYSKYHDi hard drive?

 

Thanks very much for your help.

 

Regards

Fred F

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  Reply # 262797 9-Oct-2009 15:48
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Hi, I have the Mysky HDI Service. All the HD content on Freeview is on Sky in HD eg Tv1,2,3 etc plus u get SKy movies and sport in HD. as far as i know there is no time limit on any recorded content of HD movies from Sky movies channels. As for Recording to ur blu-ray recorder i am unable to help you there. but as far as i know you can record them to DVD recorders using the RCA connectors ? and the size of the Mysky Drive is 320GB






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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 262824 9-Oct-2009 16:38
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l43a2: Hi, I have the Mysky HDI Service. All the HD content on Freeview is on Sky in HD eg Tv1,2,3 etc plus u get SKy movies and sport in HD. as far as i know there is no time limit on any recorded content of HD movies from Sky movies channels. As for Recording to ur blu-ray recorder i am unable to help you there. but as far as i know you can record them to DVD recorders using the RCA connectors ? and the size of the Mysky Drive is 320GB


Thanks for your reply. I guess there is not a lot of point in having Freeview as well as MYSKYHDi if the HD picture quality of both is much the same. I have seen some HD Freeview broadcasts, and they are certainly a step up from the standard definition (SD) broadcasts. That's why I wondered whether the SKY satellite video is as good as, or better than, the UHF video from Freeview.

The new Panasonic 500 GB blu-ray recorder advertises that it can store up to 240 hours of HD video on its BW850 500GB drive, but it looks like MYSKY can only record about 30 hours of HD content, so perhaps the Panasonic machine compresses the video more than MYSKY?   My guess is that SKY wouldn't let you record HD content on an external blu-ray recorder, so that would confine the Panasonic recorder to recording only Freeview content. And at a current cost of $1850, that makes the Panasonic recorder a lot more expensive than the MYSKY option (in the short term anyway).

Regards
Fred F

 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 262827 9-Oct-2009 16:43
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I thought Freeview HD Content was protected by HDCP? So that would mean no recording of freeview HD to an external recorder either.

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  Reply # 262828 9-Oct-2009 16:44
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Sky HD gives you a better range of viewing options specially if your into Sport and Movies 30 hours doesnt seem much tho sky needs to allow you to upgrade to bigger drives 1TB+ for example they may do this in the future






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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 262842 9-Oct-2009 17:17
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ZollyMonsta: I thought Freeview HD Content was protected by HDCP? So that would mean no recording of freeview HD to an external recorder either.


Thanks for your reply. I have just read in another "Geek" thread that "currently protected" SKY channels are TV1, TV2, TV3, and all the movie channels. But I'm not sure whether this just applies to HD broadcasts or ALL broadcasts, including "standard definition"? Can anyone give any further information on this point please? In other words, is MYSKYHDi more restrictive than my current "ordinary" SKY decoder as far as recording content to an external DVD recorder?

Regards
Fred F



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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 262905 9-Oct-2009 22:00
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frednz:
l43a2: Hi, I have the Mysky HDI Service. All the HD content on Freeview is on Sky in HD eg Tv1,2,3 etc plus u get SKy movies and sport in HD. as far as i know there is no time limit on any recorded content of HD movies from Sky movies channels. As for Recording to ur blu-ray recorder i am unable to help you there. but as far as i know you can record them to DVD recorders using the RCA connectors ? and the size of the Mysky Drive is 320GB


Thanks for your reply. I guess there is not a lot of point in having Freeview as well as MYSKYHDi if the HD picture quality of both is much the same. I have seen some HD Freeview broadcasts, and they are certainly a step up from the standard definition (SD) broadcasts. That's why I wondered whether the SKY satellite video is as good as, or better than, the UHF video from Freeview.

The new Panasonic 500 GB blu-ray recorder advertises that it can store up to 240 hours of HD video on its BW850 500GB drive, but it looks like MYSKY can only record about 30 hours of HD content, so perhaps the Panasonic machine compresses the video more than MYSKY?   My guess is that SKY wouldn't let you record HD content on an external blu-ray recorder, so that would confine the Panasonic recorder to recording only Freeview content. And at a current cost of $1850, that makes the Panasonic recorder a lot more expensive than the MYSKY option (in the short term anyway).

Regards
Fred F


After looking on the Panasonic Australia web site, the owner's manual for the Panasonic BW850 states that the 500GB blu-ray recorder can store 72 hours in "DR" mode of high definition quality: 15Mbps. The manual says that the "recording time of DR mode depends on bit rate of broadcasting".

Fred F

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  Reply # 263075 10-Oct-2009 16:44
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frednz:
ZollyMonsta: I thought Freeview HD Content was protected by HDCP? So that would mean no recording of freeview HD to an external recorder either.


Thanks for your reply. I have just read in another "Geek" thread that "currently protected" SKY channels are TV1, TV2, TV3, and all the movie channels. But I'm not sure whether this just applies to HD broadcasts or ALL broadcasts, including "standard definition"? Can anyone give any further information on this point please? In other words, is MYSKYHDi more restrictive than my current "ordinary" SKY decoder as far as recording content to an external DVD recorder?

Regards
Fred F


Yes mysky is more restrictive then an "ordinary " Sky decoder. To my knowledge a non mysky has no recording retstrictions to external device, even pay per view can be recorded on the non mysky ones externally.

The channels that are restricted are to all broadcasts on that channel, not just the HD programs.
At moment if need more then 30 hours recorded at one time then mysky won't do it.

The mysky has 320GB drive but I believe half of this is used for on demand content that is over priced in my view so never watched, pity on demand can't be turned off, as it only leaves 160GB for recording what want to watch.

ZollyMonsta: I believe the freeview box adds in the HDCP, it's not in the signal. There's non certified freeiew boxes that don't put in the HDCP.



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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 263132 10-Oct-2009 19:27
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rugrat:
frednz:
ZollyMonsta: I thought Freeview HD Content was protected by HDCP? So that would mean no recording of freeview HD to an external recorder either.


Thanks for your reply. I have just read in another "Geek" thread that "currently protected" SKY channels are TV1, TV2, TV3, and all the movie channels. But I'm not sure whether this just applies to HD broadcasts or ALL broadcasts, including "standard definition"? Can anyone give any further information on this point please? In other words, is MYSKYHDi more restrictive than my current "ordinary" SKY decoder as far as recording content to an external DVD recorder?

Regards
Fred F


Yes mysky is more restrictive then an "ordinary " Sky decoder. To my knowledge a non mysky has no recording retstrictions to external device, even pay per view can be recorded on the non mysky ones externally.

The channels that are restricted are to all broadcasts on that channel, not just the HD programs.
At moment if need more then 30 hours recorded at one time then mysky won't do it.

The mysky has 320GB drive but I believe half of this is used for on demand content that is over priced in my view so never watched, pity on demand can't be turned off, as it only leaves 160GB for recording what want to watch.

ZollyMonsta: I believe the freeview box adds in the HDCP, it's not in the signal. There's non certified freeiew boxes that don't put in the HDCP.




Thanks very much for this information. Yes, it’s correct that the “non mysky” decoder has no recording restrictions to DVDs etc. But I wonder why  MYSKY won’t allow recordings to external recording devices of certain (or all?) NON HD programmes? It doesn’t seem equitable that the MYSKY decoder should be more restrictive than an “ordinary non HD” decoder??

It's interesting that only 160GB is available on the drive for "normal" recordings! Because the maximum recording time for HD content is given as 30 hours, this certainly would suggest that substantially less than 320GB is available for this content, considering that the HD 500GB Panasonic BW850 stores 72 hours of HD quality at 15Mbps. Is SKY HD content recorded at 15Mbps?

Because it costs $20 per month to rent MYSKY (including the $5 monthly HD "ticket"), and you have only a small hard drive and can't record to DVDs, it makes me wonder whether the gain in HD picture quality is worth this money. Does the HD content really look a great deal better than the SD content? The SD content on my setup looks like it would be hard to improve on!

Regards
Fred F

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  Reply # 263135 10-Oct-2009 19:35
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Sky SD content is generally poor to disgusting in quality so I'm not quite sure how you've achieved anything that can't be improved upon. Have you ever seen HD content from a bluray on your TV???

EDIT: Or maybe you are watching from too great a distance. 32" is good for a metre and a half max viewing distance. 46" good for two metres. If you watch from 3 metres then you never see any detail anyway.

EDIT2: Running channels at resolutions of 544x576i and poor birates with some Sky channels nearing 2 Mbps mpeg2 is substandard in anyone's definition and totally incomparable with an HD 1080i channel at 10 Mbps H.264.




Ross

 

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 263177 10-Oct-2009 21:42
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Spyware: Sky SD content is generally poor to disgusting in quality so I'm not quite sure how you've achieved anything that can't be improved upon. Have you ever seen HD content from a bluray on your TV???

EDIT: Or maybe you are watching from too great a distance. 32" is good for a metre and a half max viewing distance. 46" good for two metres. If you watch from 3 metres then you never see any detail anyway.

EDIT2: Running channels at resolutions of 544x576i and poor birates with some Sky channels nearing 2 Mbps mpeg2 is substandard in anyone's definition and totally incomparable with an HD 1080i channel at 10 Mbps H.264.


Thanks for your post. Yes, I own a blu-ray player and have watched HD content on it, but perhaps you are right, I might be looking at the screen from too great a distance! I certainly don't sit "on top" of the TV and "pixel peep", my viewing distance would be about 4 metres from a 40 inch screen.

I can't imagine many people watching a 46" screen from just 2 metres away, but honestly, I can certainly see a lot of detail from 4 metres away! So from a distance of 4 metres, it sounds like I could look at a 100 inch screen, which is what I actually do when I use my projector, but I find this a bit overpowering. In fact, I soon get engrossed in the story, and perhaps wouldn't notice whether there was a lot of fine detail in bees' knees in the picture or not.

But I wouldn't go so far as to say that SKY SD content is "poor to disgusting", some blu ray movies aren't hugely better in quality (IMHO). So can anyone confirm that a SKY HD broadcast doesn't drop any quality when compared with the same content being played direct from a blu-ray disk in a blu ray player?

Fred F

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  Reply # 263184 10-Oct-2009 22:08
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Maximum viewing distance for resolving 1080p on a 40 inch is 5.2 feet. Barely even possible for the human eye to resolve SD resolutions at 4 metres/15 feet.




Ross

 

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 263190 10-Oct-2009 22:38
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Spyware: Maximum viewing distance for resolving 1080p on a 40 inch is 5.2 feet. Barely even possible for the human eye to resolve SD resolutions at 4 metres/15 feet.


I found this article to be interesting, it suggests that the furthest seating position should be 5 x 40 inches, or 200 inches from a 40 inch screen. I sit about 4 metres (which is 13 feet or 156 inches) from a 40 inch screen, which is well within the range of the "2 - 5" principle. But if I was selling TVs, I would try and convince people that a 52 inch LCD TV was quite OK for even a small room!

http://www.practical-home-theater-guide.com/Tv-viewing-distance.html






The '2-to-5' Principle

"The nearest seating position should be limited to approximately twice the screen width while the furthest seating position should be no more than five times the width of your screen."

Fred F











 
 





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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 263195 10-Oct-2009 23:03
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frednz:
Spyware: Maximum viewing distance for resolving 1080p on a 40 inch is 5.2 feet. Barely even possible for the human eye to resolve SD resolutions at 4 metres/15 feet.


I found this article to be interesting, it suggests that the furthest seating position should be 5 x 40 inches, or 200 inches from a 40 inch screen. I sit about 4 metres (which is 13 feet or 156 inches) from a 40 inch screen, which is well within the range of the "2 - 5" principle. But if I was selling TVs, I would try and convince people that a 52 inch LCD TV was quite OK for even a small room!

http://www.practical-home-theater-guide.com/Tv-viewing-distance.html

The '2-to-5' Principle

"The nearest seating position should be limited to approximately twice the screen width while the furthest seating position should be no more than five times the width of your screen."

Fred F

I see the above actually refers to the screen WIDTH, which for a 40 inch LCD TV is about 35 inches. So the theoretical furthest seating position for a 40 inch LCD TV is 175 inches, so my seating position of 156 inches might still be OK for SD broadcasts. But the above article does, of course, suggest that you can get closer for a HD broadcast, but overall, the article cautions against buying a screen that is too big for the room.

Fred F











 
 



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  Reply # 263235 11-Oct-2009 09:27
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If you use  closer distance you will see that even though Sky's SD content includes pretty colours to make the brain go wow that the picture is extremely crude with hideous evidence of macro blocking. Watch Trackside and see if you can actually see a horses leg rather than a bunch of squares many pixels wide (I'm not saying this is a good example but gives an indication of the substandard bitrates that they use and consider acceptable). Oddly DVB-T transmissions have more detail from the same SD sources.

A 40" to me is not of a size one would use in a home theatre, great for a small lounge in a 1950's house though. I would need to use a telescope or binoculars on a screen that small at your viewing distances as there is no pixel structure at all evident to my eyes.




Ross

 

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Ultimate Geek
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  Reply # 263316 11-Oct-2009 19:46
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Spyware: If you use  closer distance you will see that even though Sky's SD content includes pretty colours to make the brain go wow that the picture is extremely crude with hideous evidence of macro blocking. Watch Trackside and see if you can actually see a horses leg rather than a bunch of squares many pixels wide (I'm not saying this is a good example but gives an indication of the substandard bitrates that they use and consider acceptable). Oddly DVB-T transmissions have more detail from the same SD sources.

A 40" to me is not of a size one would use in a home theatre, great for a small lounge in a 1950's house though. I would need to use a telescope or binoculars on a screen that small at your viewing distances as there is no pixel structure at all evident to my eyes.



Yes, it’s true that the closer you get to a picture, and the larger the picture is, the more defects you can see in that picture. This applies not only to TV pictures, but also to photographs and oil paintings! I was amazed at the Monet exhibition at how people were standing only 12 inches from the paintings, when the artist certainly intended that you view the paintings from a much greater distance so that you could actually see a “real” picture instead of just paint “blobs”. In addition, the best way to view large photographs is from a reasonable viewing distance, and not from just a few inches away.

 

Viewing a 40 inch TV screen from 4 metres certainly hasn’t been a problem to dozens of people who have visited our place. You can see clearly all the writing and numbers in the pictures without the aid of telescopes or binoculars. In fact, if the SD pictures from SKY were as bad as you imply, there would be a national uproar, and this simply isn’t the case. But, here’s the good thing, although none of our visitors have wanted to get closer to the screen, it’s very easy to do this by just shifting a chair up as close as you want.

 

It must be a TV salesperson’s delight to find people who want to sit very close to a TV screen, because this would help to sell the very large screens and also to convince them that they really must have HD SKY broadcasts. For the best results, I think you should sit as far back from the TV screen as you can and you may still see all the detail that you want.

 

Fred F

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