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80 posts

Master Geek
+1 received by user: 9


  Reply # 884335 25-Aug-2013 21:18
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StarBlazer: Okay so lets summarise the issues.

Quality. Varies from very good to very poor. As we are all getting the content from the same place there must be something else reducing the quality on the way. Is there a pattern of which ISP or area? Please report.

Judder. We are all experiencing this regardless of quality? However I did not see it on my Galaxy S2.

Value for money. If all you want is EPL I think it's good especially if you are following one of the lower teams. If you follow lots of sports then no, it's not good for you. This is not PLPs fault but Sky for becoming complacent in their ownership so the EPL rights and the poor choice they offered customers.

Platform. Poor start in respect to choice but that will be getting better. People are getting used to on demand from an app on a device which may or may not be connected to the TV. It's not a perfect service and doesn't cover everyone, but based on cost, neither did Sky - it was outside my budget.

Future. If this succeeds then maybe next time they will have Euro and FA Cup. Perhaps their next sport will be rugby!

My thoughts anyway.

The question is where do we go from here? Which of he above are you show stoppers. I still hope PLP are watching this thread.





Well I subscribe and am fairly happy so I use the term 'show stopper' loosely, but the judder is the biggest show stopper for me. If that could be eradicated I'd be happy. I'm looking forward to trying out the iPad app to see if that performs better. Other than that I'd call the quality adequate, although nothing to write home about. A 4500kbps stream would be interesting.
I think it's pretty good value for money, although having to pay for it on top of subscribing to sky sports for everything else I want to watch is a fly in the ointment. It would be really cool if they began doing other European leagues, especially Serie A and La Liga (I leave out the Bundesliga only because Sommet have it), although it would be interesting to see how much extra they charge for that. Broadband costs don't bother me at all, in fact it prompted me to look a bit more closely at my bill which made me notice that Vodafone were still carrying on charging me the price for my old Telstraclear plan even though Vodafone's equivalent plan was cheaper for more data, so I ended up saving money as a result of that!

1475 posts

Uber Geek
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Subscriber

  Reply # 884344 25-Aug-2013 21:35
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NonprayingMantis:

I also ignored sky basic too.

Sky sports is 26, but you said you wanted hd, so to get that you need a mysky and an HD ticket, which comes to another 25, so it's just over 50 bucks per month to get that, all this excluding sky basic.

Plp is about 15 per month.


PLP is $19.90 something for platinum which is required for prem league review and condensed replays of the games.

You get MySky for all the other channels too, along with the 4 other HD channels so I don't think it is right to lump all these items with a single package when they apply to all the packages that you may have.  I will clarify, for me given that I have all of Sky's channels (apart from the specialist rugby, rialto etc) the difference between PLP and Sky Sports is $10 / month; see my calcs again to see why if you still disagree.

chris

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Uber Geek
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  Reply # 884360 25-Aug-2013 22:16
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Benoire:
NonprayingMantis:

I also ignored sky basic too.

Sky sports is 26, but you said you wanted hd, so to get that you need a mysky and an HD ticket, which comes to another 25, so it's just over 50 bucks per month to get that, all this excluding sky basic.

Plp is about 15 per month.


PLP is $19.90 something for platinum which is required for prem league review and condensed replays of the games.

You get MySky for all the other channels too, along with the 4 other HD channels so I don't think it is right to lump all these items with a single package when they apply to all the packages that you may have.  I will clarify, for me given that I have all of Sky's channels (apart from the specialist rugby, rialto etc) the difference between PLP and Sky Sports is $10 / month; see my calcs again to see why if you still disagree.

chris


Ok, for you, given you are already spending the money anyway, it isn't much different, but your pot I was responding to before said

"We should most definitely be comparing to Sky HD though as that was the former maximum quality that was available for not much more than what you pay for a month with PLP. "

'You'. Suggest you are speaking in general terms, not specifically about your own situation.

94 posts

Master Geek
+1 received by user: 12


  Reply # 884364 25-Aug-2013 22:45
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Odd but I have never experienced judder in any of my tests or watching live. I've seen peeps on these boards complain of the same with far better specs than mine. So I'm puzzled why anyone is experiencing this. I had a faultless night of viewing yesterday and everything was at a constant 3K.

I'm starting to wonder that perhaps my location to the servers is giving me an advantage.

80 posts

Master Geek
+1 received by user: 9


  Reply # 884365 25-Aug-2013 22:55
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Dororke: Odd but I have never experienced judder in any of my tests or watching live. I've seen peeps on these boards complain of the same with far better specs than mine. So I'm puzzled why anyone is experiencing this. I had a faultless night of viewing yesterday and everything was at a constant 3K.

I'm starting to wonder that perhaps my location to the servers is giving me an advantage.


It also seems to be pretty erratic. Last weekend I was watching a game on Chrome but the judder was awful, so I tried watching on Opera instead and it was way better. So this weekend, I started out using Opera but the judder was annoying me again so I tried switching back to Chrome, which seemed to be better. Go figure!

dwl

363 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 43


  Reply # 884366 25-Aug-2013 22:59
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insane:
StarBlazer: If you are not getting the quality you expect maybe it's your ISP link with the CDN that's the issue - I don't know if that's a real possibility, but it's worth putting it out there.

That's totally a possibility, not all ISPs have Akamai caches (most do), and for the ones that do, they may not be large enough for the demand, or they may not be close enough to the end users. So its VERY likely that there will be a difference of experience between ISPs.

Since SKY moved to Akamai we've noticed a fairly large spike on our cluster when big rugby games are on. Our old Akamai cluster which was replaced a year or two ago would have been unlikely to sustain the demand needed today.

This morning from 7:20am I was looking at the replays and found that 3 were stuck at a stable 1600 (I had selected 3000 fixed) while the other 4 were at a solid 3000.  Moving between the streams kept giving the same answers.  Looking at what I think are the servers being used there were 6 different DNS names and 12 separate IP addresses.  I found the 1600 quality a bit annoying and the consistent rate suggested it had been locked there.  A spot check showed there were 3000 segments available from the servers that were only giving 1600.

In the afternoon they were all at 3000 and both times my speedtests had plenty spare.  I am with Telecom who is a partner in this venture and I thought they would have adequately sized servers supplied by Akamai but perhaps the demand has caught them out.  Noting the post by StarBlazer that Hull was streaming at 3000 this was one that was also at 3000 for me.

I also had a couple of brief dropouts last night (freezes for several seconds) at almost exactly midnight on the live stream. My stats suggest for 2&1/2 minutes the local server was delivering no content and it was coming for the US (seemed west coast), pulling 60 MB before the local one took over again. A few dropouts aren't much of an issue as this backup method largely worked well but may depend on good international for all the users on that local cache.  I was impressed by this resilience.

Is my experience being stuck at 1600 unusual or are others noticing drops in speed on some streams at busy times which seems at the moment to be Sunday mornings?



dwl

363 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 43


  Reply # 884386 25-Aug-2013 23:33
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Kim587: It also seems to be pretty erratic. Last weekend I was watching a game on Chrome but the judder was awful, so I tried watching on Opera instead and it was way better. So this weekend, I started out using Opera but the judder was annoying me again so I tried switching back to Chrome, which seemed to be better. Go figure!

This highlights one of the key problems for PLP.  They might (all going well) be able to control the stream quality up to close to the user but the variability once it gets into the home can be high.  If I look at the PLP recommendations for browsers they simply name them and don't state versions.  Other have had issues with stuttering with Chrome and Flash (like here). 

After I earlier mentioned that others at Yellow Fever had found that IE was better than Chrome I checked myself and found that IE was sitting stable at about 10% CPU (Core i5 2.6 GHz laptop, Windows 8, IE10, Chrome 29) while Chrome was only a bit higher at 13%.  However, as the stream progressed, Chrome CPU usage just kept slowly climbing until it reached about 23% when something tripped and it came down a little but stayed above 20%.  The trouble with these issues is not all sources may invoke the same impairments and how do you measure them.  CPU is easy to watch but higher values don't mean there is a problem.

Is it possible to quantify how bad this "stuttering" is ?   This might get down to individual sensitivities.  There can certainly be bad motion blur with panning camera shots when the objects "explode" in size when the rate of movement exceeds the coding capabilities for this relatively low bandwidth but I wouldn't call this stuttering.

1115 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 179


  Reply # 884394 26-Aug-2013 00:35
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If you directly download the entire game (see back in thread for details on this) do some of the quality issues still appear?

Or do they re-encode the entire match for the on-demand side.




 


36 posts

Geek
+1 received by user: 3


  Reply # 884404 26-Aug-2013 03:32
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im watching rhe spurs game now and I have seen more jumping tonight than on
an episode of skippy the bush kangaroo.

dwl

363 posts

Ultimate Geek
+1 received by user: 43


  Reply # 884447 26-Aug-2013 09:07
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Apsattv: If you directly download the entire game (see back in thread for details on this) do some of the quality issues still appear?

Or do they re-encode the entire match for the on-demand side.

This would be a good starting point for comparison with the same file that could be viewed outside the Flash player.  However, for the FUL-ARS live game I was getting it delivered to my PC as the mp4 chunk method and I can't get a truncated URL to initiate the whole game.  An earlier example on this forum worked with the mp4 base URL but only gave 20 seconds, not the full game.  I haven't spent the time to work out how to bulk download and join the chunks together.
 
From your earlier posting it seems the m3u8 method may be an option while the game is live (perhaps to support the IOS app when it finally arrives?).  These seem to produce 10 second TS chunks so at the least some different containers are being used and it is possible that re-encoding might also be used (NeuLion will know, PLP might, I don't).  If issues are only with live streams it may not be that conclusive that it is the stream as the player may behave differently.  

Ideally a small sample of where stuttering/juddering is seen should be saved for this comparison.  I thought I saw a small amount on the 4 second clip that was shared in this forum here (ball motion not totally fluid between frames) but on deeper analysis I think it was end user re-encoding if I can believe Bitrate Viewer.  Comparisons need accurate copies of the original stream.

vkjc: im watching rhe spurs game now and I have seen more jumping tonight than on an episode of skippy the bush kangaroo.

I don't think this is added value that PLP is intending ;-)

We seem to be getting varying reports on the amount of stutter but this is at the extreme end.  It could be anywhere from in the original stream (seems rather unlikely to me as you wouldn't have a viable product), poor delivery to or from the local CDN (quite possible) or within your system.

I really hope that newer alternatives of players like MHEG-IC direct to TVs work well and are adopted by these providers as the current system that relies on software decoding with Flash on browsers is a minefield.  There is a whole separate topic about how providers like Netflix are moving away from Flash to HTML5 and support for Flash on Linux stopped at 11.2.  

The call for 4500 rate is reasonable but may well make stuttering worse for some if they try that rate.  We can't expect PLP to be held responsible for the items under the end user control but equally a system that requires a lot of elements to work well together can be a big hurdle.  This content is one of the harshest tests you can deliver for streaming video and when coupled with previous experiences of HD delivery, for what is treasured content, I am not at all surprised there are issues and complaints.

94 posts

Master Geek
+1 received by user: 12


  Reply # 884460 26-Aug-2013 09:37
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I watched the Spurs v Swansea game live with my boy, and had the Cardiff v Man City game on picture in picture. Save for not being able to get rid of the ribbon at the top of the screen (anyone know how to get rid of it?), the feed was very good. At half time perceiving the other game to be dull (how wrong was that!), I went back to full screen on the Spurs game just to get rid of the game ribbon. Again I had no problems with any kind of poor visual experience. I had accidentally left the bit rate selection on best available and I did notice the resolution clock down to 1,600 a couple of times through the 2nd half, but this was only for a breif moment and was probably a better thing to happen than have the feed pause.

Overall I'm very happy with things.

6434 posts

Uber Geek
+1 received by user: 1571


  Reply # 884463 26-Aug-2013 09:41
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I think people who are giving their opinions now on pic quality etc (whether good or bad) should also include a few other bits in their post like:

ISP
BB Technology (ADSL/VDSL etc) and sync speed
Viewing method (android app, laptop, TV via HDMI to laptop etc)
whether it was live or one demand, and what time of day you were viewing.


maybe we will see some patterns emerging that can help diagnose if there is a genuine issue somewhere, or whether it is just that people have different expectations....

80 posts

Master Geek
+1 received by user: 9


  Reply # 884464 26-Aug-2013 09:43
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I find putting the cursor down in the bottom left corner gets rid of the ribbon at the bottom.

36 posts

Geek
+1 received by user: 3


  Reply # 884465 26-Aug-2013 09:43
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who knows eh. I like the premise of this service.
the execution is whats lacking for me.
it cant be area where you live can it? ( im in whangarei)

ufb due to my house in 6 weeks tho.
wonder if that will help.

94 posts

Master Geek
+1 received by user: 12


  Reply # 884466 26-Aug-2013 09:45
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Not hard to tell when the EPL started. Here's my usage for the month which ends at midnight tonight...

26/08/2013 5.53GB
25/08/2013 7.63GB
24/08/2013 8.21GB
23/08/2013 4.25GB
22/08/2013 6.26GB
21/08/2013 3.89GB
20/08/2013 5.04GB
19/08/2013 9.51GB
18/08/2013 11.29GB
17/08/2013 7.42GB
16/08/2013 5.53GB
15/08/2013 5.59GB
14/08/2013 5.39GB
13/08/2013 3.42GB
12/08/2013 5.86GB
11/08/2013 4.65GB
10/08/2013 2.63GB
09/08/2013 3.53GB
08/08/2013 4.41GB
07/08/2013 3.17GB
06/08/2013 3.88GB
05/08/2013 4.23GB
04/08/2013 3.07GB
03/08/2013 3.97GB
02/08/2013 2.90GB
01/08/2013 9.25GB
31/07/2013 6.57GB
30/07/2013 4.89GB
29/07/2013 5.31GB
28/07/2013 4.91GB
27/07/2013 2.86GB

Total usage: 165.07GB

1 | ... | 99 | 100 | 101 | 102 | 103 | 104 | 105 | 106 | 107 | 108 | 109 | 110 | 111 | 112 | 113 | 114 | 115 | 116 | 117 | 118 | 119 | ... | 210
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