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post #16171 of 16189 Old 05-14-2016, 10:33 AM
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FOX-HD poor quality / macroblocking

For about the last month, I've noticed a significant drop in quality of FOX-HD (KCPQ HD) on Comcast. The main program I record is Gotham, and I frequently see quite a bit of macroblocking appear in scenes (it will come and go). The most visible artifact is that actors faces will appear to be subdivided into blocks. It's somewhat subtle, but I see it whenever it happens, and it's very distracting.

I'm not sure if this is a change on Fox's end, or Comcast's. KCPQ-HD used to be one of the highest quality channels, even though it's only 720p. The bitrate was consistently high (around 13Mbps).

Does anyone else see this as well? Is the upcoming MPEG-4 switchover responsible?
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post #16172 of 16189 Old 05-20-2016, 03:44 PM
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What gives? This is on the Olympia 750 MHz plant. Are we going MPEG4 too? Are those 3 dots really all there is on this channel? Bitrate seems to imply that...

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post #16173 of 16189 Old 05-28-2016, 01:54 PM
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Mpeg4

Got this letter today. Seems the MPEG4 transition's a few weeks away.
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post #16174 of 16189 Old 05-29-2016, 11:03 AM
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The letter we got in Portland was similar but more, we need to upgrade your box type thing. The office I went to gave me a really crappy box to replace the nice big Motorola one I had and refused to give me a X1 box claiming it conflicts with cable card devices(not true) I eventually ordered a X1 box online and they shipped one to me very quickly and it works fine here, cable card stuff and all. The old box would refuse to play any MPEG4 stuff, which at first was just some of the free on demand HD stuff I wanted to watch so that forced me to upgrade.
The non DVR version has limited output options, just HDMI and optical out I think, old box had every output option there was, and all were active at the same time. I really like the X1 GUI and extra features, but hate the limited video out options. My HD HomeRun Prime works fine with MPEG4 stuff so no issues there so far and everything plays nicely together.
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post #16175 of 16189 Old 06-01-2016, 09:55 AM
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Rude awakening

I live in 98270. This morning, my 2 year old HDHomerun Prime + cable card setup couldn't tune KCPQ HD in NextPVR, yet had no problems with The Weather Channel HD. I quickly determined why: DRM! Everything worked fine yesterday.


As you can see from the screenshot, the application of DRM appears nearly complete on all Limited Basic channels.


Was this expected? I was thinking about the MPEG4 transition, but certainly not this. I'm really glad I elected not to upgrade my Windows 7 HTPC to Windows 10. It looks like I'm forced to get familiar with Windows Media Center after 10 years of GBPVR/NextPVR (and KCPQ HD did tune in fine in WMC).
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post #16176 of 16189 Old 06-01-2016, 05:42 PM
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The hacked 8.1 version for 10 works great. Been running it in 10 for quite a while now and just works like normal and windows update hasn't killed it yet. I have other issues with 10 but media center since I installed the hacked version hasn't been one of them if you WANT to try 10.
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post #16177 of 16189 Old 06-01-2016, 09:32 PM
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@Dartman , do the HDHomeRun primes work in Win7 with MPEG4? It's about to happen here in Olympia...

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post #16178 of 16189 Old 06-01-2016, 10:02 PM
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It worked fine till we built my new I7 980 on my old hex core AMD with win 7 and wmc continues to work fine in 10. I think some of the channels had switched over but either way it's the same wmc tweaked to run in 10. I can tell because the bitrate and space used is much lower. I haven't looked at the part in the primes software that shows what format the channels use yet.
Also video redo will convert mpeg4 streams very quickly to H264 mkv, the mpeg2 streams take a lot longer and it puts up the will take longer to recode warning.
First streams that converted here were the hd streaming channels for my one movie channel as my old Motorola box refused to play them.
99 percent sure you should be fine and you can always check their website and forums to double check but everything continues to work here.
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post #16179 of 16189 Old 06-02-2016, 07:26 PM
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And, if it's any consolation, my whole DRM/CopyOnce situation was a fluke. I live chatted with Comcast and they set some kind of magic bullet signal to my CableCard, and the DRM went away when I rescanned the channels.
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post #16180 of 16189 Old 10-30-2016, 11:32 PM
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Anyone else losing channels on a cablecard? Seems this current change to H264 is wreaking havoc on my system again.
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post #16181 of 16189 Old 10-31-2016, 09:05 PM
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None that I've noticed here in Olympia. Using 2 HDHR Prime and WMC.

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post #16182 of 16189 Old 11-01-2016, 12:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigpoppa206 View Post
Anyone else losing channels on a cablecard? Seems this current change to H264 is wreaking havoc on my system again.
Yes. I'm in Lacey and have lost Disney HD and CNN HD on my cablecard Sony 34xbr960. Mostly an inconvenience because I can get these in HD on my Roku or watch the SD channels.

I don't understand couples having TVs in their bedroom. A bedroom is for two things: sleep is one and watching TV ain't the second.

Sony KD-34XBR960 * Onkyo TX-SR313 Receiver * Ascend 5.1 speakers with HSU subwoofer
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post #16183 of 16189 Old 11-02-2016, 01:08 PM
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About to ditch my cablecard and here is why. I have 3 TVs. 2 are on X1 and 1 TV has a cablecard installed directly. A couple of months ago my cablecard that inserts into my old Hitachi TV failed to tune in a lot of my HD channels. Went to the cable store to exchange and the replacement did not work after calling to try to activate. The next replacement worked. Then my bill came and instead of being charged "Additional Outlet $2.99", I now got charged $11.45 less a $2.50 equipment credit = $8.95.
Addt Outlet Cablecards 11.45


Includes Additional Outlet Service @ $9.95, First


CableCARD Card @ $0.00, and Second CableCARD


IN Same Device @ $1.50. Customer Owned


Equipment Credit of $2.50 Will Apply.


Customer-Owned Equipment -


Adjustment


2.50 cr


I called Comcast and argued about this charge and even argued with the supervisor as well. Basically, they are now charging $9.95 for the Additional Outlet Service now instead of $2.99. I also argued I did not have a Second CableCard but they did not credit me for an additional $1.50.
Now today, my cablecard has another problem. Some of my upper HD channels like USA(672), SyFy(676), Food(675) are only giving me Audio only, no video. Not sure if this has to do with MPEG4 or not. Tried tuning in channel 1995 but all I get are the 3 dots. So I am now debating whether to ditch the card completely and get another X1 cable box which would cost $9.95 or $1 more than the cablecard. I could also try calling Comcast to see if they can reset the card remotely. I'll probably stew over this for another day.
So if you are still getting charged 2.99 for your cablecard,, you better hope Comcast doesn't switch to their new "Addt Outlet Cablecard 11.45" charge.
























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post #16184 of 16189 Old 02-19-2017, 04:22 PM
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As I was using the sports channel option (button C on the remote) after I switched to the program I noticed all those channels were numbered over 1000, duplicating the HD channels over 100. Does this have anything to do with MPEG4?
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post #16185 of 16189 Old 02-19-2017, 04:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tjxxx21 View Post
About to ditch my cablecard and here is why. I have 3 TVs. 2 are on X1 and 1 TV has a cablecard installed directly. A couple of months ago my cablecard that inserts into my old Hitachi TV failed to tune in a lot of my HD channels. Went to the cable store to exchange and the replacement did not work after calling to try to activate. The next replacement worked. Then my bill came and instead of being charged "Additional Outlet $2.99", I now got charged $11.45 less a $2.50 equipment credit = $8.95.
Addt Outlet Cablecards 11.45


Includes Additional Outlet Service @ $9.95, First


CableCARD Card @ $0.00, and Second CableCARD


IN Same Device @ $1.50. Customer Owned


Equipment Credit of $2.50 Will Apply.


Customer-Owned Equipment -


Adjustment


2.50 cr


I called Comcast and argued about this charge and even argued with the supervisor as well. Basically, they are now charging $9.95 for the Additional Outlet Service now instead of $2.99. I also argued I did not have a Second CableCard but they did not credit me for an additional $1.50.
Now today, my cablecard has another problem. Some of my upper HD channels like USA(672), SyFy(676), Food(675) are only giving me Audio only, no video. Not sure if this has to do with MPEG4 or not. Tried tuning in channel 1995 but all I get are the 3 dots. So I am now debating whether to ditch the card completely and get another X1 cable box which would cost $9.95 or $1 more than the cablecard. I could also try calling Comcast to see if they can reset the card remotely. I'll probably stew over this for another day.
So if you are still getting charged 2.99 for your cablecard,, you better hope Comcast doesn't switch to their new "Addt Outlet Cablecard 11.45" charge.
























Get used to it they have been pulling that digital outlet crap in Portland for years, all the outlets are digital it's just a backhanded way to charge extra for a cable card. I have a extra HD box here I haven't turned in and a old Samsung 530 media player with cable card support I use in another room. I get the 2.50 credit then get dinged for 9.95 and am wondering if it would still be cheaper to just return the card and keep the second box. Hard to say as they would probably still charge 9.95 for additional outlet anyways plus the box rental. The Samsung works with all the channels MPG4 or otherwise too, just doesn't get any extra info on the guide it gets anymore as they haven't updated anything in a while for it.
One area sued Comcast over the charge and won so they had to drop it but I guess nobody here has bothered so they keep charging it. For a long time they had dropped any extra outlet charges but then they discovered they could use it to hit cable card users and anyone else with extra boxes so they started charging it again a while ago.
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post #16186 of 16189 Old 02-19-2017, 04:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hergertr View Post
As I was using the sports channel option (button C on the remote) after I switched to the program I noticed all those channels were numbered over 1000, duplicating the HD channels over 100. Does this have anything to do with MPEG4?
That is supposedly part of their one guide setup for everyone I guess and they just started adding those channels here in Portland too. As far as I can tell other then the high number nothing is changed so you still get the crappy MPG4 bandwidth that seem to lessen the bandwidth and mostly runs at 720p so they can save space and still say it's HD. From what I can see the motion blur is worse and it usually uses a lot less bitrate so a show that would normally be about 4 meg per 45 minutes of real programing is about a bit over 1 meg and only about 3 meg bitrate rather than around 8-9.
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post #16187 of 16189 Old 04-23-2017, 03:49 PM
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I've managed to check out the Xfinity app through Roku, and I personally think that makes a great second (or even third) device. When I saw the CableCard debacle at $11.45, I was thankful for the $7.45 potential charge* to use the Roku instead. From what I can see, the Roku app closely mirrors the X1 interface, with few noticeable differences. For what it is, I was really enjoying it.

Bottom line, as long as your Roku is within your wifi range, there's really no visible issues with this method! And yes, if you're using a wifi range extender, or if you're using your Belkin or Netgear router (just as examples) instead of your Xfinity Gateway, you can still use Xfinity on Roku. The only requirements are you're connected to your Xfinity network and logged in to your account. Unfortunately the "Xfinity To Go" features can't be used.

* As far as I know, Xfinity On Roku is STILL in beta. And, during this time frame, the $7.45 charge will not be applied on your account. This could change at a later date, but the fair price mentioned was $7.45. There was even a possibility of the price just disappearing, but that's unlikely. The fact that it was mentioned by Comcast ... definitely surprising.
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post #16188 of 16189 Old 04-27-2017, 02:44 PM
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Im not sure if this is the right place for this, but will cable tv ever output TV or sports in 4k?
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post #16189 of 16189 Old 04-28-2017, 09:23 AM
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Originally Posted by bjm2 View Post
Im not sure if this is the right place for this, but will cable tv ever output TV or sports in 4k?
Rogers Cable in Canada already delivers NHL games and Toronto Blue Jays home games in 4k. I assume 4k will come to US cable companies eventually.

The Masters was available in 4k (not on Comcast) and other events will undoubtedly follow. I would guess that once Comcast gets significantly into IP delivery they will start offering some things in 4k.
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