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146 posts

Master Geek


# 46746 9-Nov-2009 10:31
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Well, I caved in and visited my local Telecom store (Riccarton, Chc). Walked out with a new TiVo and spent an hour or so having fun unboxing, connecting and configuring. Have got wireless working, all manner of things recording, Home Networking working and CASPA all up and running. Purchased 'Ghost Town' last night and I would say quality is certainly comparable to DVD although some banding and artifacting was noticed in sky scenes etc. Not too bad though, but I guess HD downloads will happen eventually. All in all, I would be happy to recommend this device and so far, so good!

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1232 posts

Uber Geek


  # 271258 9-Nov-2009 12:11
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kiwipeter: Well, I caved in and visited my local Telecom store (Riccarton, Chc). Walked out with a new TiVo and spent an hour or so having fun unboxing, connecting and configuring. Have got wireless working, all manner of things recording, Home Networking working and CASPA all up and running. Purchased 'Ghost Town' last night and I would say quality is certainly comparable to DVD although some banding and artifacting was noticed in sky scenes etc. Not too bad though, but I guess HD downloads will happen eventually. All in all, I would be happy to recommend this device and so far, so good!


Good luck with your new purchase, it's great that you are pleased with it! I'm interested in the quality of your movie download, my question is, would you expect a SKY HD movie to be of a better quality? Or do you think the TiVo movie quality is about the same as a SKY "standard definition" movie broadcast?

With regard to your comment that HD downloads will eventually happen, it depends I guess on what you classify as HD, but a true blu-ray DVD quality film can fill a 25 gigabyte DVD. So, I doubt whether SKY or TiVo could ever match the quality of playing a blu-ray DVD direct on a blu-ray DVD player connected by HDMI to a full HD 1920 x 1080p television?

Regards
Fred



146 posts

Master Geek


  # 271261 9-Nov-2009 12:21
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Hi Fred,

I would put the level of the downloaded movie at DVD quality (or maybe even a little better). I also have a Blu-ray player and it's not as good as that (obviously!).

I would imagine the Sky HD would be 720p or 1080i/p so would be (theoretically) of better quality. That said, I haven't seen one to be able to comment. On my 40" LCD, the quality was certainly good enough and pleasing to the eye.

And no, the downloads that people are getting from various on-line places (like Netflix in the USA) are not full HD and probably we'll have to wait a few years to get streaming, downloading Blu-ray quality visuals (even without HD audio) to match physical media.

Put it this way, I consider myself to be quite fussy about video quality and the TiVo has not got me too anxious!

Thanks,
Peter

 
 
 
 


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Uber Geek

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  # 271277 9-Nov-2009 13:14
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Good luck with your new purchase, it's great that you are pleased with it! I'm interested in the quality of your movie download, my question is, would you expect a SKY HD movie to be of a better quality? Or do you think the TiVo movie quality is about the same as a SKY "standard definition" movie broadcast?
Regards
Fred


Given Sky SD quality is lower bitrate than most youtube content I think to even make the comparison to this substandard service is a mistake. Sky is the reference for low quality and nothing more. No other service would dare to match it.




Spark FibreMAX using Mikrotik CCR1009-8G-1S-1S+. Apple TV 4, Apple TV 4K, iPad Air 1, iPhone 6s, VodaTV Gen 2. If it doesn't move then its data cabled.


483 posts

Ultimate Geek

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  # 271286 9-Nov-2009 13:46
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Spyware:

Good luck with your new purchase, it's great that you are pleased with it! I'm interested in the quality of your movie download, my question is, would you expect a SKY HD movie to be of a better quality? Or do you think the TiVo movie quality is about the same as a SKY "standard definition" movie broadcast?
Regards
Fred


Given Sky SD quality is lower bitrate than most youtube content I think to even make the comparison to this substandard service is a mistake. Sky is the reference for low quality and nothing more. No other service would dare to match it.


Wow - Thats a pearl of wisdom - got anything to back up your statement ie something which lists the actual bitrates and compares them to youtube...

SS1/2/3 usually average somewhere around 6-8Mb - which is many many times above what youtube offers... As does Sky Movies... Yes there are channels which run lower bit rates ie around 2Mb average, but these are still many times above what Youtube offers.

SS1/2 HD often peak above 20Mb on domestic sport - which is nearly twice what Freeview HD offers...

Sky Movies HD sit somewhere in the 10-15Mb range.   This is very comparable with Freeview HD.

Maybe you should present some facts to match the brown stuff dribbling out your mouth...

402 posts

Ultimate Geek


  # 271307 9-Nov-2009 15:02
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it depends on the codec used.

the codec that youtube uses is much more efficient than what sky use - so you don't need a direct bit-for-bit comparison.

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Ultimate Geek

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  # 271317 9-Nov-2009 15:31
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itey: it depends on the codec used.

the codec that youtube uses is much more efficient than what sky use - so you don't need a direct bit-for-bit comparison.


Wow another pearl of wisdom...

Sky use both MPEG-2 and h.264 - both of which are accepted as fairly reasonable codecs - given that one is many years older than the other, with h.264 being accepted as one of the most efficient codecs around at the moment.

h264 is also used within FLV - which you may find related with things to do with Youtube.  h.264 is also the exact same codec used by Freeview NZ and many other broadcasters worldwide for HD content - funnily enough due to its efficiency.

Youtubes primary aim in life is to present video to the masses using as little bandwidth as possible, and using files which occupy as little disk space as possible. 

You cannot expect to mention quality and youtube in the same sentence and expect to be taken seriously - which is why if you try to stick the boot into Sky or any other broadcaster without knowing the facts you just end up looking like your FOS.

Maybe we might need a bucket - the brown stuffs getting out of control around here...

1232 posts

Uber Geek


  # 271342 9-Nov-2009 16:26
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RustyGonad:
itey: it depends on the codec used.

the codec that youtube uses is much more efficient than what sky use - so you don't need a direct bit-for-bit comparison.


Wow another pearl of wisdom...

Sky use both MPEG-2 and h.264 - both of which are accepted as fairly reasonable codecs - given that one is many years older than the other, with h.264 being accepted as one of the most efficient codecs around at the moment.

h264 is also used within FLV - which you may find related with things to do with Youtube.  h.264 is also the exact same codec used by Freeview NZ and many other broadcasters worldwide for HD content - funnily enough due to its efficiency.

Youtubes primary aim in life is to present video to the masses using as little bandwidth as possible, and using files which occupy as little disk space as possible. 

You cannot expect to mention quality and youtube in the same sentence and expect to be taken seriously - which is why if you try to stick the boot into Sky or any other broadcaster without knowing the facts you just end up looking like your FOS.

Maybe we might need a bucket - the brown stuffs getting out of control around here...



I found an interesting article here:

http://www.wap.org/journal/digitaltv.html

ATSC formats: Many are defined, including:
Standard definition (SDTV): 480i to maintain compatibility with NTSC.
Enhanced definition (EDTV): 480p to match the quality of movie DVDs.
High definition (HDTV): 720p for compact transmission of HD images and 1080p for sharp resolution on all screen sizes; i = interlaced (2 pass scanning) and p = progressive (1 pass scanning).

The goal is for all DTV broadcasters to use the 1080p format, but the standard allows for HD broadcasting at 720p or 1080i in the interim. Most DTV receivers are being built to scan at 1080p and to convert to that when the incoming signal is either 720p or 1080i. The aspect ratio is now 16:9 to more nearly conform with that used by motion picture theaters.

So, do you think that the quality of TiVo movies would be equivalent to 480p or 720p? And do you think TiVo movies would be equivalent to a broadcast at 10 megabits per second (Mbps), 15 Mbps, or 20 Mbps?

Thanks for your help.

Regards

Fred

 
 
 
 


483 posts

Ultimate Geek

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  # 271349 9-Nov-2009 17:10
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I can't comment on the exact quality of Tivo movies - however the metrics behind all downloaded movies are relatively simple - codecs issues aside the bigger the file, the better the quality.

There's a whole lot of other variables - ie you can release a downloaded movie at 720p resolution (as many of the US providers do), but with a very low bitrate so that the filesize remains manageable - to say somewhere around 2GB - they can still call it a HD release, quality will be OK until you compare it to the Bluray - and then it will probably look bad - many reviews go as far as to say they also look bad vs a DVD.

Fact is with any download content - especially in New Zealand - you need to manage both the consumers ability to deal with it (ie diskspace) and the time it takes to download. Both of these will comprise the quality when compared with Bluray or even a HD broadcast.

Consideration needs to be taken for the fact that most Bluray's use around 20-30GB of space for the movie - downloading this into the home at the moment just isn't practical (or maybe just a bit slow :) ). On Demand doesn't cater for it taking 5 days to download - which is why the filesizes (resolution, bitrate etc) need to be managed.

Even HD broadcasts (eg Sky Movies 1080i) still only use roughly half the bitrate of Bluray - they can look OK, but the equiv Bluray always looks better.

Someone else can probably comment on the actual filesize/bitrates, but I doubt Tivo will be using anywhere near even these bitrates - not cause they don't want to - just that having to deal with even an 8-10Gb file creates many consumer issues.

Personally I think the only thing to measure it against is your own eyes - if you like it forget the metrics and use it. If not get a Bluray player. Remember On Demand/download movies aren't about quality, they're about convenience.





1232 posts

Uber Geek


  # 271416 9-Nov-2009 19:56
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RustyGonad: I can't comment on the exact quality of Tivo movies - however the metrics behind all downloaded movies are relatively simple - codecs issues aside the bigger the file, the better the quality.

There's a whole lot of other variables - ie you can release a downloaded movie at 720p resolution (as many of the US providers do), but with a very low bitrate so that the filesize remains manageable - to say somewhere around 2GB - they can still call it a HD release, quality will be OK until you compare it to the Bluray - and then it will probably look bad - many reviews go as far as to say they also look bad vs a DVD.

Fact is with any download content - especially in New Zealand - you need to manage both the consumers ability to deal with it (ie diskspace) and the time it takes to download. Both of these will comprise the quality when compared with Bluray or even a HD broadcast.

Consideration needs to be taken for the fact that most Bluray's use around 20-30GB of space for the movie - downloading this into the home at the moment just isn't practical (or maybe just a bit slow :) ). On Demand doesn't cater for it taking 5 days to download - which is why the filesizes (resolution, bitrate etc) need to be managed.

Even HD broadcasts (eg Sky Movies 1080i) still only use roughly half the bitrate of Bluray - they can look OK, but the equiv Bluray always looks better.

Someone else can probably comment on the actual filesize/bitrates, but I doubt Tivo will be using anywhere near even these bitrates - not cause they don't want to - just that having to deal with even an 8-10Gb file creates many consumer issues.

Personally I think the only thing to measure it against is your own eyes - if you like it forget the metrics and use it. If not get a Bluray player. Remember On Demand/download movies aren't about quality, they're about convenience.







Thanks very much for posting this interesting information. I contacted a Telecom retail outlet, and I asked whether the Caspa movies are in standard or high definition. The “official” reply was that the movies are in high definition because they are delivered in 720p. This NZ Herald article also says that a Caspa movie was demonstrated at 720p resolution:

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/technology/news/article.cfm?c_id=5&objectid=10606142

Your comment above that you can download at 720p but with a very low bit rate, may possibly be the situation with TiVo, because in a recent NBR article, the size of each movie download is stated as 1.4GB. So, do you think a file of this size for a whole movie can produce a reasonable quality result?

Caspa delivers extra TV and movie content via your broadband connection, unmetered by Telecom (that is, none of the data you download will count toward your monthly cap. And that’s no small deal when each movie runs to 1.4GB. Sky TV has taken down its broadband on-demand service, citing the lack of unmetered data plans. In fact, there’s only one - Telecom’s Big Time, which is subject to throttling).” 

http://www.nbr.co.nz/print/114160

The above NBR article also states that Caspa content is “standard definition digital” that is, the quality that most Sky TV subscribers see (bar the 13,000 or so who’re clipping the HD Ticket). The article said that, with a sample movie, it looked good, think DVD-like quality. (This NBR article did not say that Caspa content is 720p or high definition, so there is some confusing / conflicting information out there on this point.)

Overall, I think you are correct, it’s the convenience of TiVo that is the important thing, and provided that you aren’t expecting “high definition” or “720p” to mean that you are getting full HD blu-ray DVD quality, then I’m sure most people will be satisfied with the Caspa quality, just as most people seem to be happy with the quality of Sky broadcasts, both SD and HD!

Regards
Fred

 

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295 posts

Ultimate Geek

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  # 271419 9-Nov-2009 20:01
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frednz:
RustyGonad:
itey: it depends on the codec used.

the codec that youtube uses is much more efficient than what sky use - so you don't need a direct bit-for-bit comparison.


Wow another pearl of wisdom...

Sky use both MPEG-2 and h.264 - both of which are accepted as fairly reasonable codecs - given that one is many years older than the other, with h.264 being accepted as one of the most efficient codecs around at the moment.

h264 is also used within FLV - which you may find related with things to do with Youtube.  h.264 is also the exact same codec used by Freeview NZ and many other broadcasters worldwide for HD content - funnily enough due to its efficiency.

Youtubes primary aim in life is to present video to the masses using as little bandwidth as possible, and using files which occupy as little disk space as possible. 

You cannot expect to mention quality and youtube in the same sentence and expect to be taken seriously - which is why if you try to stick the boot into Sky or any other broadcaster without knowing the facts you just end up looking like your FOS.

Maybe we might need a bucket - the brown stuffs getting out of control around here...



I found an interesting article here:

http://www.wap.org/journal/digitaltv.html

ATSC formats: Many are defined, including:
Standard definition (SDTV): 480i to maintain compatibility with NTSC.
Enhanced definition (EDTV): 480p to match the quality of movie DVDs.
High definition (HDTV): 720p for compact transmission of HD images and 1080p for sharp resolution on all screen sizes; i = interlaced (2 pass scanning) and p = progressive (1 pass scanning).

The goal is for all DTV broadcasters to use the 1080p format, but the standard allows for HD broadcasting at 720p or 1080i in the interim. Most DTV receivers are being built to scan at 1080p and to convert to that when the incoming signal is either 720p or 1080i. The aspect ratio is now 16:9 to more nearly conform with that used by motion picture theaters.

So, do you think that the quality of TiVo movies would be equivalent to 480p or 720p? And do you think TiVo movies would be equivalent to a broadcast at 10 megabits per second (Mbps), 15 Mbps, or 20 Mbps?

Thanks for your help.

Regards

Fred


Hi first we use DVB and also PAL

SD is 576i and so called enhanced was used in Aus at 576p and was called E/HDTV before 720p,1080i/p became standard. TiVo movies http://www.geekzone.co.nz/forums.asp?forumid=114&topicid=44294 are SD so 576i and if you have a HDMI then the lowest setting will be 576p but the broadcast is still 576i




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295 posts

Ultimate Geek

Lifetime subscriber

  # 271422 9-Nov-2009 20:05
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RustyGonad: I can't comment on the exact quality of Tivo movies - however the metrics behind all downloaded movies are relatively simple - codecs issues aside the bigger the file, the better the quality.

There's a whole lot of other variables - ie you can release a downloaded movie at 720p resolution (as many of the US providers do), but with a very low bitrate so that the filesize remains manageable - to say somewhere around 2GB - they can still call it a HD release, quality will be OK until you compare it to the Bluray - and then it will probably look bad - many reviews go as far as to say they also look bad vs a DVD.

Fact is with any download content - especially in New Zealand - you need to manage both the consumers ability to deal with it (ie diskspace) and the time it takes to download. Both of these will comprise the quality when compared with Bluray or even a HD broadcast.

Consideration needs to be taken for the fact that most Bluray's use around 20-30GB of space for the movie - downloading this into the home at the moment just isn't practical (or maybe just a bit slow :) ). On Demand doesn't cater for it taking 5 days to download - which is why the filesizes (resolution, bitrate etc) need to be managed.

Even HD broadcasts (eg Sky Movies 1080i) still only use roughly half the bitrate of Bluray - they can look OK, but the equiv Bluray always looks better.

Someone else can probably comment on the actual filesize/bitrates, but I doubt Tivo will be using anywhere near even these bitrates - not cause they don't want to - just that having to deal with even an 8-10Gb file creates many consumer issues.

Personally I think the only thing to measure it against is your own eyes - if you like it forget the metrics and use it. If not get a Bluray player. Remember On Demand/download movies aren't about quality, they're about convenience.






Hi

 Also to note alot of BR movies are encoded using MPEG 2 that is why the files are so large, Dish network or DirecTV in the states has 1080p PPV and that is H.264 so the file and bitrates would be far less than BR.




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