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post #1531 of 1559 Old 10-09-2016, 12:22 PM
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Originally Posted by kitti View Post
Nice screenshots. Now with photos to judge myself, I'd definitely say you simply have too high of expectations for the increasingly compressed (but fully functional) cable delivery system. As I've mentioned previously, streaming is getting better quality every year. Comcast is getting worse every year. If you don't like it, cut the cord. OTA currently (and always has) offers the best "live TV" picture quality, and with ATSC 3.0, that is expected to only get better. Even OTA looks awful compared to streaming.
I really don't think my expectations are too high. Especially considering the cost. It's not like I'm expecting BluRay quality from Comcast. I'm not even expecting the same quality as streaming(although not long ago Comcast was equal to streaming and streaming hasn't noticeably improved in that time) but as you can see the difference is HUGE. Do you remember back years ago with VHS where if you recorded something and then copied it and then copied the copy and then copied that copy how bad it would get? That's what that screenshot of Gotham(the one with the three ladies) reminds me of. I understand the cable companies are going to compress but this is ridiculous. Plus, I'm not convinced it's a compression issue since the pizza place near my house (mentioned in previous posts) which should be getting the same signal (same head end) looks much better. Even if it WAS over compression Comcast is now using MPEG-4/H.264 in my area which is supposed to be good even and relatively high compression ratios. Sure, it would look noticeably worse than streaming but not this bad.

I live in an area where OTA reception is terrible. Even if that was an option I still wouldn't be able to record unless I spent $400 on an OTA Tivo(which I don't really like) and still only be able to watch like 6 channels. That would mean no SyFy, no TBS, no FX, no Comedy Central, etc. And most importantly no Comcast Sports Bay Area which is a MUST. I've looked into SlingTV but there are still channels it doesn't have and with all the add on packages to get the channels I want(including stand alone HBO) it's not much cheaper than Comcast but no ability to record or pause/rewind live TV. Trust me, I'd love to cut cable but only if I can get a similar experience.

The only other option I see at this point is switching to DirecTV but there are a few problems with that.

1. I'd have to break my contract for my Comcast Triple Play deal and pay the several hundred dollar fee.

2. DirecTV is owned by AT&T and AT&T has terrible internet. In my area it's unreliable and maxes out at 18Mbps. Because of that I'd have to stick to Comcast for internet. That means not getting a bundle discount. The Triple Play has 250Mbps internet which is $199.99/month on its own. Even going down two levels to 100Mbps is $77.99/month or about $85/month with taxes and fees. Add in the price of DirecTV(after the 3 months free of HBO, ShoTime, etc) and it's like $60-70 more than I pay now and I can't stand the DirecTV DVR UI.
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post #1532 of 1559 Old 10-09-2016, 04:27 PM
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^
The bundle deal is why I went to Comcast. I miss my Dish Hopper. Was paying 70$ a month just for Comcast internet. As far as picture quality, I'm happy with Comcast. To me, I can't see any difference between Dish and Comcast. But I also have 65 year old eyes.
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post #1533 of 1559 Old 10-10-2016, 07:31 PM
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Some questions on my mind about PQ:

1) Why does streaming often have better PQ? Does encoding for streaming video compress better than encoding for cable delivery even at the same bitrate?

2) The Xfinity TV app: Does Comcast pass the original stream as provided from the source, or do they compress these as well? I don't know if it's just my eyes, but it does seem that the streams from the app are worse than directly from the source. This definitely seems to be the case with FS1 compared to Fox Sports Go but not so much with ESPN vs. WatchESPN. CBS Sports Network stream looks very soft (unfortunately, don't have a source stream to compare it to).

3) Are the TV Go version of streams better than the In-Home version (or at least no worse), or is it just my eyes. I wonder if the TV Go version (for contractual reasons or whatever) must be passed through without alteration while the In-Home versions can be altered/compressed as Comcast sees fit.
1. Offline encoding and VBR without the constrains of a fixed channel. So yes, you can get much better quality at much lower bitrates.

2. Heavily compressed. It's different from the TV stream, but it's heavily compressed. They're not passing you a 15+mbps stream over the internet. Not even close.

3. They are all heavily compressed. TVGo, live TV, and XoD all use different compression.

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2. DirecTV is owned by AT&T and AT&T has terrible internet. In my area it's unreliable and maxes out at 18Mbps. Because of that I'd have to stick to Comcast for internet. That means not getting a bundle discount. The Triple Play has 250Mbps internet which is $199.99/month on its own. Even going down two levels to 100Mbps is $77.99/month or about $85/month with taxes and fees. Add in the price of DirecTV(after the 3 months free of HBO, ShoTime, etc) and it's like $60-70 more than I pay now and I can't stand the DirecTV DVR UI.
I got to play with Genie the other day, and it's not that bad. It's surely no TiVo, but still leaps and bounds better than X1, at least in my limited time with it. Aside from their DVR, however, yes, the bundling is an issue. Comcast is highly anti-competitive the way they price things, as they want to leverage their broadband monopoly.
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post #1534 of 1559 Old 10-11-2016, 12:51 AM
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Originally Posted by BiggAW View Post
1. Offline encoding and VBR without the constrains of a fixed channel. So yes, you can get much better quality at much lower bitrates.

2. Heavily compressed. It's different from the TV stream, but it's heavily compressed. They're not passing you a 15+mbps stream over the internet. Not even close.

3. They are all heavily compressed. TVGo, live TV, and XoD all use different compression.
My bad. I wasn't clear. I wasn't asking about whether the Xfinity TV app passes through a 15+ mbps stream over the internet. By "source", I meant the actual internet stream from the network (e.g., what HBO would send through HBO Go, what FS1 would send through Fox Sports Go), not what gets delivered via cable. So, my question re-stated: Does Comcast pass the same streams through the Xfinity TV app -- and without further compression -- as the networks through their own apps?

And as for TV Go vs. In-Home streams, I was distinguishing between the two different internet streams through the Xfinity TV app. "In-Home" doesn't refer to what's delivered over cable. It refers to the entire channel lineup that can be accessed through the same channel numbers inside the app as those on the cable system (e.g., ch. 759 on cable for CNN and ch. 759 in app for CNN). These channels can be accessed literally within the home only. The channels actually have an "In-Home" logo in the channel and program descriptions. "TV Go" refers to the other stream (e.g. TV Go version of CNN) that can be accessed wherever you want outside the home. So, my question again: Are the TV Go streams better than the In-Home version (or at least no worse), or is it just my eyes?
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post #1535 of 1559 Old 10-11-2016, 02:10 PM
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Originally Posted by KingsFan6 View Post
My bad. I wasn't clear. I wasn't asking about whether the Xfinity TV app passes through a 15+ mbps stream over the internet. By "source", I meant the actual internet stream from the network (e.g., what HBO would send through HBO Go, what FS1 would send through Fox Sports Go), not what gets delivered via cable. So, my question re-stated: Does Comcast pass the same streams through the Xfinity TV app -- and without further compression -- as the networks through their own apps?
Oh I see what you're asking. In terms of the content (what ads are provided), I'm not sure, I'm guessing it's a national streaming feed, as it seems to have different commercials and such, and they definitely aren't using the same compression as WatchESPN for example. Their quality is sort of all over the place in my experience, but I also don't use it that often.

Quote:
And as for TV Go vs. In-Home streams, I was distinguishing between the two different internet streams through the Xfinity TV app. "In-Home" doesn't refer to what's delivered over cable. It refers to the entire channel lineup that can be accessed through the same channel numbers inside the app as those on the cable system (e.g., ch. 759 on cable for CNN and ch. 759 in app for CNN). These channels can be accessed literally within the home only. The channels actually have an "In-Home" logo in the channel and program descriptions. "TV Go" refers to the other stream (e.g. TV Go version of CNN) that can be accessed wherever you want outside the home. So, my question again: Are the TV Go streams better than the In-Home version (or at least no worse), or is it just my eyes?
That I don't know, and I would imagine it would depend on the device you're watching on. I would *think* it's adaptive bitrate based on the connection you're on, and the only difference between in-home and TVGo would be what's licensed for what, but I'm king of guessing here.
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post #1536 of 1559 Old 10-13-2016, 02:16 PM
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I really don't think my expectations are too high. Especially considering the cost.
Ya, that's why I don't pay for cable. The value proposition just isn't there. They either need lower price or better service.
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I'm not even expecting the same quality as streaming(although not long ago Comcast was equal to streaming and streaming hasn't noticeably improved in that time)
I would disagree. Just a few years ago we were (for example) watching Netflix at 480p in stereo sound (something like 1.5Mbps AVC), now we've got 4k with 5.1 DD+ and something like 12Mbps HEVC.
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Do you remember back years ago with VHS where if you recorded something and then copied it and then copied the copy and then copied that copy how bad it would get? That's what that screenshot of Gotham(the one with the three ladies) reminds me of.
LOL ya I never did try VHS piracy, but I can imagine cascading copies got progressively worse.
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Plus, I'm not convinced it's a compression issue since the pizza place near my house (mentioned in previous posts) which should be getting the same signal (same head end) looks much better. Even if it WAS over compression Comcast is now using MPEG-4/H.264 in my area which is supposed to be good even and relatively high compression ratios. Sure, it would look noticeably worse than streaming but not this bad.
If it were me, and I was as befuddled by the pizza shop as you are, I would setup a HTPC or DVR each in the pizza shop and at home, make sure their clocks are well synced up, and set them both to record a TV show at the same time. You could do it with just one recorder and record a show that has a re-run like 3 hours later, but potentially introduces a variable. I would then take the pizza shop computer home and compare both the file sizes and go through skipping and pausing to frame-match the two feeds for a direct comparison, on either an matching pair multi-monitor setup or just flipping back and forth between sources. That is really the only scientific way to remove the majority of the hard-to-test variables. If you end up with different qualities at the pizza shop and at home, then you know you need to call Comcast. If the qualities are the same, then you know that the pizza shop just has a cable-box/TV setup that makes things look better than your setup. It is also possible that the aroma of pizza influences our ability to be critical of a crappy picture.
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I live in an area where OTA reception is terrible
Bummer. Me too.
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Even if that was an option I still wouldn't be able to record unless I spent $400 on an OTA Tivo(which I don't really like)
There are plenty of cheaper ATSC DVRs. Like 4x cheaper
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1. I'd have to break my contract for my Comcast Triple Play deal and pay the several hundred dollar fee.
True; You probably shouldn't have signed a contract without knowing the level of service you'd receive.
BTW, this isn't always enforced, and googling a little will give you plenty of ideas on how people have skirted around.
For example, at least in my area, if you call in to transfer service to a new address (you say you are moving) but then you give them an address that definitely doesn't have Comcast service, they'll cancel the service and contract without any fees. They don't have any way of actually checking if you moved residences. This might be "dishonest" by some moral standard, but it isn't like Comcast treats its customers with much honesty either.
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The Triple Play has 250Mbps internet which is $199.99/month on its own. Even going down two levels to 100Mbps is $77.99/month or about $85/month with taxes and fees.
Holy cow! My monthly Comcast bill (internet only, 65Mbps down, 6Mbps up, 1TB/m cap, no contract, BYOmodem, all taxes and fees included) is $34.99. Your franchise is raking in the dough!

Last edited by kitti; 10-13-2016 at 02:20 PM.
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post #1537 of 1559 Old 10-13-2016, 07:27 PM
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Around here internet-only is around $80/mo for any decent speeds. They have a monopoly, and they abuse it.
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post #1538 of 1559 Old 10-14-2016, 03:00 AM
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I got to play with Genie the other day, and it's not that bad. It's surely no TiVo, but still leaps and bounds better than X1, at least in my limited time with it. Aside from their DVR, however, yes, the bundling is an issue. Comcast is highly anti-competitive the way they price things, as they want to leverage their broadband monopoly.
We've been over this many times. It's a matter of opinion. I greatly prefer X1 to the Genie and TiVo. The Genie just seems so outdated to me. Reminds me of the old iGuide Comcast used to have. Among other things the search feature is an absolute joke.

The anti-competitive monopoly that Comcast has really does suck. Not much I can do about it unless I give up access to what I want.
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post #1539 of 1559 Old 10-14-2016, 03:20 AM
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I would disagree. Just a few years ago we were (for example) watching Netflix at 480p in stereo sound (something like 1.5Mbps AVC), now we've got 4k with 5.1 DD+ and something like 12Mbps HEVC.
I thought you meant the quality of the standard HD. Of course it's better than 480 SD. Not too long ago Comcast was providing a picture not too far off from Netflix HD.

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If it were me, and I was as befuddled by the pizza shop as you are, I would setup a HTPC or DVR each in the pizza shop and at home, make sure their clocks are well synced up, and set them both to record a TV show at the same time. You could do it with just one recorder and record a show that has a re-run like 3 hours later, but potentially introduces a variable. I would then take the pizza shop computer home and compare both the file sizes and go through skipping and pausing to frame-match the two feeds for a direct comparison, on either an matching pair multi-monitor setup or just flipping back and forth between sources. That is really the only scientific way to remove the majority of the hard-to-test variables. If you end up with different qualities at the pizza shop and at home, then you know you need to call Comcast. If the qualities are the same, then you know that the pizza shop just has a cable-box/TV setup that makes things look better than your setup. It is also possible that the aroma of pizza influences our ability to be critical of a crappy picture.
That would be nice but it just isn't practical. I don't have a HTPC and Comcast DVRs can just be moved like that. There is activation involved. What I'd like to do is take my TV up to the pizza place and hook it up to one of their boxes and use the TVs screenshot feature to take some screen shots while at the same time having the DVR at home recording the same thing and compare the screenshots but that would involve getting the pizza place to let me do that. I did work there and do know the owner but I don't think he'd go for that. It's one thing to flip around the channels while they aren't busy. It's another thing to mess with their setup. Also, un-mounting, unhooking, transporting, hooking up and doing all of it again in reverse would be a huge pain in the ass.

[quote]
Bummer. Me too.
[/QUOTE

Yep, it sucks.

There are plenty of cheaper ATSC DVRs. Like 4x cheaper

Quote:
True; You probably shouldn't have signed a contract without knowing the level of service you'd receive.
Didn't have many options and like it or not the bundled contract deal saved me lots of money.

Quote:
BTW, this isn't always enforced, and googling a little will give you plenty of ideas on how people have skirted around.
For example, at least in my area, if you call in to transfer service to a new address (you say you are moving) but then you give them an address that definitely doesn't have Comcast service, they'll cancel the service and contract without any fees. They don't have any way of actually checking if you moved residences. This might be "dishonest" by some moral standard, but it isn't like Comcast treats its customers with much honesty either.
Interesting idea except that I'd still want to keep internet so that wouldn't work.

Quote:
Holy cow! My monthly Comcast bill (internet only, 65Mbps down, 6Mbps up, 1TB/m cap, no contract, BYOmodem, all taxes and fees included) is $34.99. Your franchise is raking in the dough!
I never understood why the prices vary in different areas. How's that even legal to charge some people more than others for that kind of service depending on where they live?
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post #1540 of 1559 Old 10-14-2016, 02:40 PM
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Originally Posted by jimv1983 View Post
We've been over this many times. It's a matter of opinion. I greatly prefer X1 to the Genie and TiVo. The Genie just seems so outdated to me. Reminds me of the old iGuide Comcast used to have. Among other things the search feature is an absolute joke.

The anti-competitive monopoly that Comcast has really does suck. Not much I can do about it unless I give up access to what I want.
Yeah, well, TiVo is the best DVR out there. X1 may be acceptable for most people, but it's just not a TiVo. Period. Genie is decent, but no TiVo.
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post #1541 of 1559 Old 10-16-2016, 06:14 AM
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Was looking at Comcast Labs. There was a announcement saying Netflix is coming soon. This will make it easier to access for us since we will no longer have to juggle remotes and switch inputs. We presently us a PS3.

One thing I'm curious about is will the audio be 5.1. I had this app on my Dish Hopper and the audio was stereo. The audio was 5.1 on the PS3.

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post #1542 of 1559 Old 10-19-2016, 05:51 PM
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Was looking at Comcast Labs. There was a announcement saying Netflix is coming soon. This will make it easier to access for us since we will no longer have to juggle remotes and switch inputs. We presently us a PS3.



One thing I'm curious about is will the audio be 5.1. I had this app on my Dish Hopper and the audio was stereo. The audio was 5.1 on the PS3.


Yes, it's in DD 5.1. Click image for larger version

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post #1543 of 1559 Old 10-20-2016, 02:58 PM
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Jim V, I think you will find that it is possible to move an already-activated comcast DVR from one location to another - anywhere on the same "headend". But indeed the pizza shop owner won't like you messing with his working TV setup!
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post #1544 of 1559 Old 10-21-2016, 07:04 PM - Thread Starter
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Comcast Raises Speeds in Northeast

Bumps max downstream of Blast! tier to 200 Mbps, Performance Pro jumps to 100 Mbps

Comcast this week increased the speeds of what it says are its most popular Internet tiers – Blast! and Performance Pro – for new and existing customers in its Northeast division.

The free speed upgrade sees the max downstream of Blast! rising from 150 Mbps to 200 Mbps, while Performance Pro rises from 75 Mbps to 100 Mbps. Comcast said it started to roll out the faster speeds on October 18, noting that customers need to re-start their modems to get them, and that it is notifying customers who might need a new modem to get the increased speeds. Customers who lease modems from Comcast can get upgraded modems at no additional charge, the company said.

The latest speed boost is for systems Comcast serves in 14 northeastern states from main through Virginia and Washington, D.C., and follows a similar speed bump the MSO brought to California in March.

“As customer demands and technology evolve, we continue to increase our broadband speeds to deliver the fastest and most reliable Internet experiences possible, both inside and outside of the home,” said Kevin Casey, president of Comcast Cable’s Northeast Division. “We’re always looking for new ways to meet and exceed customer expectations, and have built a state-of-the-art network capable of continuing to deliver best-in-class speed and capability as the Internet world progresses.”

Comcast is also testing 1-Gig services using DOCSIS 3.1 in Nashville, Chicago and Atlanta, with Detroit and Miami on deck.


http://www.multichannel.com/news/dis...rtheast/408563
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The Netflix app appeared today. Some of the audio is 5.1

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post #1546 of 1559 Old 11-01-2016, 05:09 PM
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I recently tried the Netflix app on the X1 box. It suffers from the same picture quality issues as the regular cable channels do. Netflix from my Chromecast and my TV's Netflix app looks WAY better. It looks like Comcast is doing something to the Netflix signal as well.
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post #1547 of 1559 Old 11-02-2016, 06:26 AM
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I recently tried the Netflix app on the X1 box. It suffers from the same picture quality issues as the regular cable channels do. Netflix from my Chromecast and my TV's Netflix app looks WAY better. It looks like Comcast is doing something to the Netflix signal as well.
The Netflix signal quality looks great here in the Seattle area. Absolutely no difference that I can see at 1080p. I still use my TV's Netflix app for 4k content, but I'm happy to use the Comcast box app for 1080p.
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post #1548 of 1559 Old 11-02-2016, 04:37 PM - Thread Starter
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I recently tried the Netflix app on the X1 box. It suffers from the same picture quality issues as the regular cable channels do. Netflix from my Chromecast and my TV's Netflix app looks WAY better. It looks like Comcast is doing something to the Netflix signal as well.
The Netflix transmission is an IP signal and comes from a different source than the QAM linear channels. If you are having problems with Netflix then it would appear co be a problem with the X1 box. If you have another source for Netflix connect it to the same HDMI port on your TV using the same HDMI cable that you are using for the X1 box. If the picture quality is better then it has to be the box.
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post #1549 of 1559 Old 11-02-2016, 04:40 PM - Thread Starter
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Comcast begins gigabit internet service across Detroit



Comcast launched ultra-fast gigabit internet service in Detroit on Tuesday.
The company announced the new internet service with speeds up to 1 gigabit-per-second is available to residential customers over Comcast’s existing infrastructure network. Comcast is the first to offer gigabit speeds to the entire city of Detroit.


The service will extend to Metro Detroit and other areas of Michigan in 2017, Collins said.


Comcast is charging $139.95 per month for the service without a contract. The company is also offering promotional base pricing for $70 per month with a three-year contract. Comcast will at some point introduce bundle packages including the gigabit service.


To get the benefit of gigabit services, customers need gigabit-capable devices. Customers will likely need a new cable modem and router.


Comcast has rolled out the new speeds in Atlanta, Nashville and Chicago. The company plans to launch in Miami by the end of the year.


The new service comes roughly a year after Detroit-based Rocket Fiber launched its fiber-optic gigabit internet service downtown. The company has over 30 miles of fiber cable installed throughout the city, and over 100 residential and commercial buildings in downtown, Midtown, Brush Park and New Center are currently online, according to a company spokesman.


http://www.detroitnews.com/story/bus...roit/93123666/
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post #1550 of 1559 Old 11-02-2016, 08:47 PM
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$70/mo! That's less than we pay for unbundled Blast! Pro Around here, it's $83/mo, $80/mo if you just want regular Performance Pro.
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post #1551 of 1559 Old 11-06-2016, 10:14 PM
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The Netflix transmission is an IP signal and comes from a different source than the QAM linear channels. If you are having problems with Netflix then it would appear co be a problem with the X1 box. If you have another source for Netflix connect it to the same HDMI port on your TV using the same HDMI cable that you are using for the X1 box. If the picture quality is better then it has to be the box.
The problem with the idea that it is the X1 box is that the issue I'm seeing is the same as I have with regular QAM cable channels. This is now my THIRD X1 box and I'm still having the issue with the regular Comcast cable. If replacing the box TWICE didn't fix the issue with the regular cable I highly doubt that getting a FORTH box would fix the issue with the regular cable or the Netflix.
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post #1552 of 1559 Old 11-07-2016, 08:38 AM - Thread Starter
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The problem with the idea that it is the X1 box is that the issue I'm seeing is the same as I have with regular QAM cable channels. This is now my THIRD X1 box and I'm still having the issue with the regular Comcast cable. If replacing the box TWICE didn't fix the issue with the regular cable I highly doubt that getting a FORTH box would fix the issue with the regular cable or the Netflix.
The reason I asked you to try a different Netflix source on the same HDMI cable and TV HDMI input is to eliminate the possibility that you have a problem with your TV (since you have eliminated the possibility that it is the X1 box). Unfortunate I cannot think of any other reason you are having a problem with the picture quality.
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post #1553 of 1559 Old 11-07-2016, 09:35 AM
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The reason I asked you to try a different Netflix source on the same HDMI cable and TV HDMI input is to eliminate the possibility that you have a problem with your TV (since you have eliminated the possibility that it is the X1 box). Unfortunate I cannot think of any other reason you are having a problem with the picture quality.
Yeah, I eliminated my TV as the problem many months ago after I started seeing the exact same issue on regular cable channels.
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post #1554 of 1559 Old 11-07-2016, 10:09 AM
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Yeah, I eliminated my TV as the problem many months ago after I started seeing the exact same issue on regular cable channels.
I think he meant rabbit ears (OTA) does it look the same? Looked to me light top zone wasn't lit
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post #1555 of 1559 Old 11-10-2016, 09:56 AM
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I think he meant rabbit ears (OTA) does it look the same? Looked to me light top zone wasn't lit
Using an HD antenna(along with BluRay and Chromecast) is how I eliminated the TV from being the issue.

What do you mean "top zone wasn't lit"?
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post #1556 of 1559 Old 11-10-2016, 10:48 AM
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Looked darker top 25% of pics (IMHO) I am just a gas bag and not a tech.
Thought I saw commonality but you can't judge from pics.
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post #1557 of 1559 Old 11-10-2016, 10:58 AM
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Looked darker top 25% of pics (IMHO) I am just a gas bag and not a tech.
Thought I saw commonality but you can't judge from pics.
Ok, I get what you mean. To take these screen shots I paused playback. The Netflix app on the Comcast X1 box shows the title of what you are watching with a tinted overlay at the top of screen while paused. That's why you see that darker part on top. You'll also notice that it doesn't appear on the screenshots taken from the Chromecast since that top bar isn't there.

And just to clarify. These images were not taken with a camera. They were captured using a screen shot feature of the TV(which is why you see the LG logo at the bottom right) so any dimming panel issues or even picture settings wouldn't show up anyways. Also, it's an OLED TV so there are no "zones".
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post #1558 of 1559 Old 11-11-2016, 06:34 AM
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X1 is horrible

Tried to watch NFL Thursday night football.
Couldn't.
Some sort of channel that advertises X1 kept interfering with NFL network channel.
Think about it. Interference between channels on a closed cable system.
Wow.
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post #1559 of 1559 Old 11-11-2016, 08:37 AM
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X1 is bad, but I fixed my problem

The old Xfinity set-top-boxes and DVRs were not picky.
Flawless and quick.
X1 is very picky, slow, and a general pain.
I had to use my silicon dust tuner to see that FSMW (one of my problem channels) is on channel 2.
ESPN is on channel 4, and it was bad also.
Turns out I had a slope filter that cut off a little too much of the low channels.
Took it out of the equation, and things appear to be fine for now.
Still not a big fan of X1.
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