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Netflix streaming quality - Page 78

post #2311 of 5444
Well this is odd. Tonight trying to either scan forwards or backwards using the PS3, it just pauses. No way to scan

Edit: 2 days later, ff and rew have returned
post #2312 of 5444
Could we speculate as to why there are so many bad encodes on Netflix streaming? I think I asked this question once before but with more additions to their library comes more erroneous encodes as well. Not only are there lots of TV shows with the sound/picture out of sync but there are newer movies with artifacts every few secs/minutes. I find this to be unacceptable.

Doesn't Netflix streaming have a PQ dept which tests an encode before it posts them? It seems to me they just have an automated process that slaps them up automatically as soon as they're done encoding.
post #2313 of 5444
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveFi View Post

Could we speculate as to why there are so many bad encodes on Netflix streaming? I think I asked this question once before but with more additions to their library comes more erroneous encodes as well. Not only are there lots of TV shows with the sound/picture out of sync but there are newer movies with artifacts every few secs/minutes. I find this to be unacceptable.

Doesn't Netflix streaming have a PQ dept which tests an encode before it posts them? It seems to me they just have an automated process that slaps them up automatically as soon as they're done encoding.

Well then feel free to drop NetFlix or subscribe to one of its many competitors.
post #2314 of 5444
Quote:
Originally Posted by olyteddy View Post

Well then feel free to drop NetFlix or subscribe to one of its many competitors.

Huh? Shouldn't DaveFi's post be greeted with a response that is commensurate with the fact that this is a thread called "Netflix Steaming Quality" within the AV "Science" forum...?
post #2315 of 5444
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveFi View Post

Could we speculate as to why there are so many bad encodes on Netflix streaming? I think I asked this question once before but with more additions to their library comes more erroneous encodes as well. Not only are there lots of TV shows with the sound/picture out of sync but there are newer movies with artifacts every few secs/minutes. I find this to be unacceptable.

Doesn't Netflix streaming have a PQ dept which tests an encode before it posts them? It seems to me they just have an automated process that slaps them up automatically as soon as they're done encoding.

I don't know what device you're using or what titles you are watching, but I use the PS3 haven't really noticed sync issues more than a handful of times and I certainly don't notice artifacts "every few secs/minutes" on anything new coming out. Yes, they exist here and there (as to be expected given the bandwidth being used) but I just haven't noticed it being a huge or constant issue, other than on the older encodes.

I am under the impression Netflix doesn't do its own encodes, and they are provided by the studios or third party. I do agree there should be some quality control in place which does seem to be missing, given the few sync issues I've noticed and issues such as subtitles being cut off on some titles. It does seem the rely a bit too much on the "report problem" functionality, and if they're going to do that, they need to expand the options available or give a comments field so you can detail the problem more.
post #2316 of 5444
I use the PS3 at times as well, certainly I've noticed problems with TV shows (check out such shows as Red Dwarf) where many of the episodes are completely out of sync. Also, I tried watching a new Jackie Chan Movie yesterday- Little Big Soldier and it had so much corruption it was unwatchable. It could be because both of these sources are foreign, I don't know. But they certainly aren't the only ones I've encountered.

It just seems that the more encodes that pop up the more problems pop up as well. You'd think the longer Netflix has been around the less these problems would occur, but it just doesn't seem to be that way.
post #2317 of 5444
Netflix used to have a section on submissions. What I recall from it there was not much of anything about how the film was submitted and mainly just a recommendation that if you were an "indie" they kinda wanted to see films submitted from your distributor. What is probably happening is that the file submitted is already compressed and results in compression artifacts when NF re-encodes.

I recently submitted a video to YouTube and this time sent it as a very high quality 1080p MP4 and the result was high quality encodes from 240p on up. For 3 minutes of content that file was almost 300 MB.
post #2318 of 5444
Must be the stuff that you watch, Dave. I see the occasional problem, but not so many or so often that it alarms me.
post #2319 of 5444
It's probably just because I rely upon Netflix streaming these days that I'm noticing it more.
post #2320 of 5444
Quote:
Originally Posted by mproper View Post

I am under the impression Netflix doesn't do its own encodes, and they are provided by the studios or third party.

Here's the Netflix delivery specs which I came across one day. Plus there was that "Encoding for streaming" blog post we like to quote where they listed sources that they encode from.
post #2321 of 5444
Thanks for that link. I suspect though that not all files submitted are "up to spec" but they take them anyway probably due to who they are dealing with (and suspecting they'd be lucky to get anything better). Then they probably have their own custom built automation suite based on the Microsoft encoder SDK (VC-1 and MP4). And I suspect the encoder suite get tweaked regularly for improvements.
post #2322 of 5444
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Mack View Post

Mine is still dropping frames at x-high with the PS3. My fiend see the same thing. We both have FIOS. It was flawless until that mandatory software update Netflix made us do a few months back. Really annoying

There was another update last night. Someone mentioned in the PS3 forums that it might have fixed the framerate issue.

I never noticed the issue on mine anyways, but figured I'd give you the heads-up in case you want to check it out.
post #2323 of 5444
I first looked at Netflix streaming on a laptop PC and found the quality on a 17" screen (I was using 2 Mbps DSL at the time) to be crappy. I tried it again at work on a faster conenction and saw little improvement. Itw as sugegsted to me that the Microsoft Silverlight app that is used to stream onto PC
s was the issue. I subsequently bought a Roku HD control box and saw a big improvement. With "HD" content on a 40" LCD it looked good - not equal to a DVD but close. On a 61" recent vintage DLP there was some softness I didn't like but it was watchable. On that screen the SD content was too soft. I upgraded to 5 Mbps DSL and saw a distinct improvement. Soon after, Verizon made me an offer I couldn't refuse for 10/5 FIOS. There was uet another improvement. The occasional dropouts and pixelation I saw at 5 Mbps disappeared. Image quality, even on the 61" DLP, is as good as good DVDs with the HD material and on occasion, especially with stuff shot in native HD video (e.g. certain TV shows) it's veru close to Blu-ray quality. tes - I have some movies on Blu-ray that blow away the best images on Netflix streaming and there are some shows/films on Netflix that aren't encoded as well and don't look as good. But connection speed and stability makes a huge difference. Right now I'm watching the Season 3 Blu-ray discs of Sons of Anarchy . I viewed Seasons 1 and 2 on streaming but subsequent seasons aren't yet available on Netflix streaming. The Blu-ray has a slight edge on the 61" DLP but on the 40" LCD from my viewing distance (10 or 11 feet with that set) I don't notice any difference. My cousin was complaining about Netflix streaming quality so I checked it out again on a PC and guess what? It's a bit better than it was two years ago but not by much.
post #2324 of 5444
^ If you upgraded to a Roku 2, you'd be getting 1080p, so you'd see another jump in quality over the 720p you're getting on the original Roku
post #2325 of 5444
Quote:
Originally Posted by mproper View Post

^ If you upgraded to a Roku 2, you'd be getting 1080p, so you'd see another jump in quality over the 720p you're getting on the original Roku

In that case I guess I'll do that. It's a shame I missed the sale last weekend but I'm sure they'll offer it again.
post #2326 of 5444
^^^

The XD and XS are on sale for $69 and $89 respectively direct from Roku with free shipping at the moment. Both are 1080p.
post #2327 of 5444
Recently in another thread I posted some stuff showing the difference between Netflix 720p and Netflix 1080p here and here and some stuff to compare Netflix 1080p to BD here (featuring msgohan's brilliant screen caps).
Quote:
Originally Posted by phaelon56 View Post

In that case I guess I'll do that. It's a shame I missed the sale last weekend but I'm sure they'll offer it again.

They're running a $10 off sale now.
post #2328 of 5444
All of a sudden having problems with Ipad and PS3.

Ipad the stream will not go more then 5 minutes without completely locking up. The only solution is to go back to main Netflix screen and start over. Tried uninstalling and reinstalling app that didn't fix it.

PS3 it stops to buffer 1-2 times during a 1 hour tv show whic his a problem I have never had before.

Anyone else having problems?
post #2329 of 5444
Is there any way to get decent HD streaming with DSL?
post #2330 of 5444
Quote:
Originally Posted by wingnut4772 View Post

Is there any way to get decent HD streaming with DSL?

Only by buying decent DSL service--bit rate is bit rate and there's no magic way to force a high bit rate stream through a lower bit rate pipe.

I just looked it up and AT&T's top DSL rate is 6 Mbps down--that's good enough to get 720p Netflix, VUDU or Zune. It's only $20/month in my area.
post #2331 of 5444
Quote:


AT&T's top DSL rate is 6 Mbps down--that's good enough to get 720p Netflix

And it works fine for me. I don't think I'd get even faster service even if it was available for a reasonable price.
post #2332 of 5444
They keep denying they are doing this but the error messages keep coming

http://i.huffpost.com/gen/345681/NET...-AT-A-TIME.jpg
post #2333 of 5444
I'll be glad when the holidays are over. Last night I started a movie around 8:45 PM and it streamed fine in HD and then a minute or two after 9 PM the stream dropped down to a horribly encoded HD. I stopped the movie and started up the stream again and the rest of the movie displayed in HD. My bet was people in the neighborhood who don't ordinarily stream NF during week ate some bandwidth. I know that shouldn't happen but apparently it does. For the same reason I often rent discs for the weekend to avoid this. I currently on AT&T Internet but will be switching over shortly or so to U-Verse fiber for the phone and Internet (they're pricing POTS lines out of existence).
post #2334 of 5444
Heh, a Sony BDP-S480 that I picked up for reward points showed up yesterday without even a notice that it had been shipped, so I set it up. I watched an episode of season 2 of "Being Human" without a hitch on Netflix. The player even includes network speed in the display. And of course I'm a little familiar with the interface having developed Sony PSP titles. Nice to play a disc and then go to Netflix without having do restart the player or play an MP4 clip to get audio back on NF which was still a problem with the Samsung C5500. Now maybe I'll see how much network problems were the ISP or the player.
post #2335 of 5444
Quote:
Originally Posted by mproper View Post


If you think it was VHS quality as your post implies you were doing something wrong (wrong device, slow connection, wrong configuration). You could have come here for advice, and we'd have helped you out (or you could have spent less than $100 for a Roku 2 and enjoyed the higher quality 1080p streams and 5.1 sound). Honestly , you should probably should just stick with Blu-ray.

I have a DSL 6 Mb/s line. There are lots of titles on Netflix streaming titles that look like VHS, and/or have very noticeable motion artifacts.

I usually stream via an xbox 360 to a 720p Plasma. Many HD titles look good on my 50" screen when I am seated 13-15 feet away from the plasma. However, even HD titles on a 110" screen via a 1080p PJ (I sit 13' away from that screen) look mediocre at best when streamed via my HTPC.

I have 2 problems with Netflix:
1. Content almost always looks different on a PC vs Xbox (and to make it fair, I can sample the same material when seated a distance of 1.5 times the screen width)
2. They (as do other Steam-based content providers) tout HD with such low bit rates. But I guess the masses see 720p or 1080p and think bit rates don't play a part.

-T
post #2336 of 5444
Quote:
Originally Posted by T-Bone View Post

2. They (as do other Steam-based content providers) tout HD with such low bit rates. But I guess the masses see 720p or 1080p and think bit rates don't play a part.

Netflix has to stream video encoded at bit rates that people can view with common household Internet service. Even then, you need 5 Mbps to stream their highest bit rate 720p (3.6 Mbps) and 7 or so Mbps to stream their 1080p encodings (4.8 Mbps--sound at either resolution is either 192 Kbps stereo or 384 Kbps 5.1 channel DD Plus). VUDU's 9 Mbps 3-bar HDX encodings are very, very close to BD, but far fewer people have service which can maintain the necessary bit rate.

Netflix's 1080p encodings are pretty decent, all things considered, and a noticeable step up from 720p. Compare the following frames from Netflix titles:

Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
Spoiler  
Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)
http://img24.imageshack.us/img24/657...ank202high.png
http://img820.imageshack.us/img820/2...nk202xhigh.png

http://img809.imageshack.us/img809/7...ank206high.png
http://img194.imageshack.us/img194/3...nk206xhigh.png

http://img542.imageshack.us/img542/2...s31080high.png
http://img683.imageshack.us/img683/5...31080xhigh.png

http://img13.imageshack.us/img13/430...dent04high.png
http://img19.imageshack.us/img19/428...ent04xhigh.png Each pair is the same frame of a film (the first two pairs from Ong Bak 2: The Beginning, the third from Let the Right One In and the fourth pair from the titles of something called The Resident, chosen for having lots of fine detail); the first of each pair is 720p and the second 1080p (To compare, I suggest opening them in different tabs in Chrome, hitting F11 to blow up to fullscreen and flipping back and forth between them with CTRL-TAB--I like to use Chrome for this because it does fullscreen better than any other browser I know, with no frame of any kind).

On close examination you can see that 1080p is sharper, but not so much that it'd make a difference to Joe Average. (The images are from msgohan's "Netflix PS3 streaming comparison PIX" thread).

The Netflix 1080p encodings don't compare as poorly as you might think to much-higher-bit-rate BD video. Here's some Netflix-1080p-versus-BD frame pairs (all facial close-ups):


Netflix is clearly not as sharp as BD, but it compares pretty well, considering that the Netflix 1080p video encodings bit rate (Outbreak on BD is 15 Mbps AVC and Lost: The Complete First Season is 22 Mbps, according to Blu-rayStats.com).

Netflix 1080p encodings are only available on a handful of devices so far, which sadly don't include the Xbox or PC. The PS3 was the first, joined by Roku 2 recently (XD and XS only); there are a few others. They released the software components necessary to add the capability to players this past summer, so new devices are trickling in.
post #2337 of 5444
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Conrad View Post

I'll be glad when the holidays are over. Last night I started a movie around 8:45 PM and it streamed fine in HD and then a minute or two after 9 PM the stream dropped down to a horribly encoded HD. I stopped the movie and started up the stream again and the rest of the movie displayed in HD. My bet was people in the neighborhood who don't ordinarily stream NF during week ate some bandwidth. I know that shouldn't happen but apparently it does. For the same reason I often rent discs for the weekend to avoid this. I currently on AT&T Internet but will be switching over shortly or so to U-Verse fiber for the phone and Internet (they're pricing POTS lines out of existence).

Just think of all of the streaming devices that people got for Xmas and were fired up during this time.
post #2338 of 5444
Quote:


Just think of all of the streaming devices that people got for Xmas and were fired up during this time.

True that. We were having a 'Medium' marathon last night and we actually had our first few re-bufferings...
post #2339 of 5444
Quote:
Originally Posted by T-Bone View Post

I have a DSL 6 Mb/s line.

At best you'll have 5.4Mbps real time which won't get you the 1080p encodes. Once in a while you might bounce into them but overall that's simply not enough bandwidth to stream them.
post #2340 of 5444
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.G View Post

Just think of all of the streaming devices that people got for Xmas and were fired up during this time.

I got a Sony BDP-S480 that arrived last week and picture quality is much better than the Samsung C5500 I was using but boy the network errors to connect! It took me 20 minutes the other night to connect to Netflix after numerous tries. But once connected there were no rebuffering problems. Connecting to Vudu and YouTube was instantaneous. Not sure why Netflix and Amazon would have such problems other than network congestion due to new subscribers and vacation watchers. I'll see what happens this coming week. In the meantime I've posted the problem on the S480 thread over on the Bluray player section. I see from a search others have had similar problems but their solutions didn't necessarily work. The Samsung was never this bad at connecting.
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