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Netflix streaming quality - Page 97

post #2881 of 5438
Quote:
Originally Posted by reddice View Post

It's just a fluke. I have heard nothing from TWC or AT&T about Open Connect. I was the only one from TWC that got Super HD and I searched for news and message boards and heard nothing about it. I avoid social media because of all the profanity on there. smile.gif

Now I lost Super HD I know it was just a fluke.
I had my hopes up, but you're probably right. I had Super HD for a day or two on Charter a few months ago, then it was gone. Maybe a glitch on Netflix side where they give you the Super HD feed unintentionally. Heck, by posting, we may even be alerting them of the fact, then they go and fix it. mad.gif
post #2882 of 5438
Sony already has several streaming video services on my Sony BD player. It's their catalog and broken up into different schemes to see which ones stick.
post #2883 of 5438
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Conrad View Post

Sony already has several streaming video services on my Sony BD player. It's their catalog and broken up into different schemes to see which ones stick.
This is what I was talking about:

Sony plans to launch a streaming TV service this holiday season with the PlayStation 4.

The Wall Street Journal reports that Sony Corp. has entered into a preliminary agreement with Viacom Inc. to carry the media company's cable channels on a Sony-branded streaming TV service. This would mean that the PlayStation company would have access to channels like MTV, Comedy Central, Nickelodeon and more, and would be Sony's first major content deal once the details have been finalized and approved by both parties.

An unnamed source said that Sony also had discussions with Walt Disney Co., Time Warner Inc., and CBS Corp. The company is looking to launch an online pay-TV product by the end of the year initially on the company's PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4 consoles, and Bravia HDTVs. This service will eventually branch out to other Sony-based devices like smartphones and tablets.

http://www.tomsguide.com/us/pay-tv-playstation-sony-streaming-tv-viacom,news-17376.html

Not what you are thinking. Those streaming services that Sony has on their Blu-Ray players and the PS-3 are the same as other providers also carry on their network capable devices.
post #2884 of 5438
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdavej View Post

I had my hopes up, but you're probably right. I had Super HD for a day or two on Charter a few months ago, then it was gone. Maybe a glitch on Netflix side where they give you the Super HD feed unintentionally. Heck, by posting, we may even be alerting them of the fact, then they go and fix it. mad.gif

What I don't understand is that Super HD streams suppose to come from your ISP using Open Connect but if TWC did not support it were did those Open Connect streams come from the four days I was able to get it?
post #2885 of 5438
Quote:
Originally Posted by MA5CMPB View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by michaeltscott View Post

What are you watching on? Do you see the Super HD logos in the player's browser?
I am using a PS3. The overlay says 1080 Super HD

But do you see Super HD logos on title descriptions in the browser, like this:

Super HD logo example (Click to show)
p1070366.jpg
post #2886 of 5438
I am not getting them on my Sony BDP-S590, or our Sony PS3 that my son has. That is due to ATT is not using Open Connect yet. Maybe once they get done with this current project, we may be a part of the lucky ones. Even worse is that I am still not getting HD or 5.1, even though the program may state that it is supposed to be HD 5.1.
post #2887 of 5438
Netflix and Amazon downthrottle resolutions at peak times, for instance I sometimes can watch a full length 1080p movie at that resolution but only if it is on a Monday or Tuesday. If you call and complain they will try to pin it on your cable provider's problems. However, how come Vudu never hiccups when Speedtest shows 15MB on same network?

VUDU on the other hand will stop the movie and offer a lower resolution instead, much more ethical, and yes Speedtest showed low network speeds anytime it happened, 1-3 times in 5 years.

It is a real xxxxx, esp with Amazon, where I watched Oblivion (fantastic scifi btw) the other day with
288i resolution 1/3 of movie, only VUDU for me if I have to pay from now on.

Netflix is almost free, and they revolutionized home movie viewing, so I will trade peak hour low rez
for all the great independent and foreign movies that Big Brother would rather have us not watch.
post #2888 of 5438
I just learned a trick on my PS3. When I start a HD program on Netflix if it drops down to that horrible 240 SD I just hit the scan button back twice and it reloads at high quality.
post #2889 of 5438
Quote:
Originally Posted by bobpaule View Post

Netflix and Amazon downthrottle resolutions at peak times, for instance I sometimes can watch a full length 1080p movie at that resolution but only if it is on a Monday or Tuesday. If you call and complain they will try to pin it on your cable provider's problems. However, how come Vudu never hiccups when Speedtest shows 15MB on same network?

My guess is that one big reason why VUDU "never hiccups" is because at any given moment there are many, many times more people trying to watch all-you-can-view-for-one-price Netflix and Amazon Prime Instant Video than are paying $3-$7 or more per title to view VUDU video. It is ridiculous to compare the services. It's sort of like asking, "how come I have to wait until the plane is in the air and cruising for drink service in coach when those people in first class get drinks served to them after everyone's boarded and we're waiting at the gate?" If you want to pay five or six times as much for air travel you too can have that privilege biggrin.gif.

I don't typically have any problem getting high def video from either Amazon or Netflix at any time of day, and only rarely had any problem getting high bit rate Netflix video before my ISP got set up for Open Connect access. I do not believe that either has any automatic "throttling" in place, though your ISP may well throttle bandwidth which they detect to be coming from those services.
post #2890 of 5438
Quote:
Originally Posted by reddice View Post

I just learned a trick on my PS3. When I start a HD program on Netflix if it drops down to that horrible 240 SD I just hit the scan button back twice and it reloads at high quality.

I've seen reports in the Roku forums of people having success with that tactic in the Roku Netflix player. The players suck up content at a low bit rate in a few seconds which take much longer to play, but might not return to that low bit rate if you go back while it's buffering at a higher bit rate.
post #2891 of 5438
Quote:
Originally Posted by michaeltscott View Post

I don't typically have any problem getting high def video from either Amazon or Netflix at any time of day, and only rarely had any problem getting high bit rate Netflix video before my ISP got set up for Open Connect access. I do not believe that either has any automatic "throttling" in place, though your ISP may well throttle bandwidth which they detect to be coming from those services.

I typically don't have problems either during peak hours (my ISP does not support Open Connect) as long as I watch it on my PS3. The Roku 3 on Netflix is a another disaster story you are all tired of hearing already.
post #2892 of 5438
Only in my early days of using VUDU did I ever see a rebuffering and I don't think I've ever seen it on Amazon. Thank god for school being back in session. No problem getting an HD stream in the evening. Or maybe some improvement was done on the backbone. Funny thing though is I keep hitting the display button on the Sony BD player remote and it shows 10 mbps every time. And the PQ is really good. Now this player according to Netflix should only be delivering 720p and wouldn't need 10 mbps for that. Of course how accurate Netflix's web site is might come into question. I believe there has been at least one update of the NF app on the player.
post #2893 of 5438
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Conrad View Post

Funny thing though is I keep hitting the display button on the Sony BD player remote and it shows 10 mbps every time. And the PQ is really good. Now this player according to Netflix should only be delivering 720p and wouldn't need 10 mbps for that. Of course how accurate Netflix's web site is might come into question. I believe there has been at least one update of the NF app on the player.

You have an older Sony BDP with a Sony implemented player, right? I have no idea what that bit rate which pops up in those players is supposed to be. The players do fill their buffer as fast as they can, so it might well suck down 10 Mbits or more during any given second. I've seen 50 Mbps peaks and Netflix Super HD plus 5.1 sound should not exceed 6184 Kbps.
post #2894 of 5438
Quote:
Originally Posted by michaeltscott View Post

My guess is that one big reason why VUDU "never hiccups" is because at any given moment there are many, many times more people trying to watch all-you-can-view-for-one-price Netflix and Amazon Prime Instant Video than are paying $3-$7 or more per title to view VUDU video. It is ridiculous to compare the services. It's sort of like asking, "how come I have to wait until the plane is in the air and cruising for drink service in coach when those people in first class get drinks served to them after everyone's boarded and we're waiting at the gate?" If you want to pay five or six times as much for air travel you too can have that privilege biggrin.gif.

I don't typically have any problem getting high def video from either Amazon or Netflix at any time of day, and only rarely had any problem getting high bit rate Netflix video before my ISP got set up for Open Connect access. I do not believe that either has any automatic "throttling" in place, though your ISP may well throttle bandwidth which they detect to be coming from those services.

I am not sure I agree with that.

Like you I have no problem getting highest quality available to me (3850 kbps stream on Comcast) at peak or non-peak hours.

However if I was having problems I would be complaining like the others. We pay Netflix (and the ISPs) for a service and if I was getting low quality video during peak hours I definitely wouldn't be using Netflix and might cancel. I am not going to get into airplane analogies because I really don't think they are appropriate - Netflix needs to find a way to deliver reliable high quality to all of its customers at a price they feel is appropriate.

That said I am a happy customer for now as I do get reliable access to the 3850 kbps streams which fine (yes I would like Super HD but that is another discussion for another day).
post #2895 of 5438
Quote:
Originally Posted by undecided View Post

Like you I have no problem getting highest quality available to me (3850 kbps stream on Comcast) at peak or non-peak hours.

However if I was having problems I would be complaining like the others. We pay Netflix (and the ISPs) for a service and if I was getting low quality video during peak hours I definitely wouldn't be using Netflix and might cancel. I am not going to get into airplane analogies because I really don't think they are appropriate - Netflix needs to find a way to deliver reliable high quality to all of its customers at a price they feel is appropriate.

Don't get me wrong--I'm not absolving Netflix of their responsibility to provide good service to their customers, just pointing out the unfairness of comparing their reliability to that of a high priced Internet pay-per-view service. VUDU is serving fewer customers for more money per customer, like an airline's first class service as compared to coach.

That being said, I think that Netflix is trying to provide better service. They are, however, dealing with resistence from some ISPs who themselves offer competitive video services. If they fail to deliver good service, for whatever reason they fail, they deserve to consequently lose business and I don't doubt that they do lose some. But in some instances I don't think that there's much they can do to improve things. They've offered all of the ISPs more direct connection to their private servers and caching servers for installation in their WANs but the biggest couple of providers have thus far declined.

Even where they've managed to get Open Connect access in place the ISPs can interfere in other ways. I do most of my Netflix watching now on a Roku box set to output 720p because I can't afford Super HD at my present rate of consumption with my 400 GB/month bandwidth cap. Now and then I'll watch on another 1080p device when I think that the title's video warrants it. The regular television season will return soon and I'll start watching all HD Netflix in 1080p again.
post #2896 of 5438
Your right about consumption. I blew through 16 GB in only a few hours when I had Super HD. In the four day glitch I went over 40 GB besides that I also watch a lot of SD content too. Normally in that time I use about 6 GB in one day.

Still it won't bother me official if TWC would support Open Connect. It makes no sense that Cox supports it yet they have a cap which kind of defeats the purpose.
post #2897 of 5438
Quote:
Originally Posted by michaeltscott View Post

You have an older Sony BDP with a Sony implemented player, right? I have no idea what that bit rate which pops up in those players is supposed to be. The players do fill their buffer as fast as they can, so it might well suck down 10 Mbits or more during any given second. I've seen 50 Mbps peaks and Netflix Super HD plus 5.1 sound should not exceed 6184 Kbps.
I chuckled when I got the player (which was free Sony Rewards) noting the familiar interface from the PSP which I've developed for. Also the API probably just exposes the player services to the app developers. So the app really shouldn't care what the stream is nor be limited to 720p. The Amazon and VUDU apps would work the same way.

But I would keep hitting the display button which brings up the timeline indicator and the bitrate. The pulp movie I watched last night every time was showing 9-10 mbps. But "Haunted House" which is popular had trouble getting above 2.1 mbps and then after awhile would start rebuffering. These higher bitrate views have been on obscure non popular films. It's like a "first come, first serve situation."
post #2898 of 5438
I wonder why the PS3 Netflix app does not show bitrate?
post #2899 of 5438
Sorry that I missed you Questions It seems like the Sony is hard coded to a server on the west Coast. This sounds weird but my streaming sucks during the Pacific peak time 6-9pm their time. During Florida peak time streaming is fine.
post #2900 of 5438
Quote:
Originally Posted by mattbatt View Post

Sorry that I missed you Questions It seems like the Sony is hard coded to a server on the west Coast. This sounds weird but my streaming sucks during the Pacific peak time 6-9pm their time. During Florida peak time streaming is fine.
Watching Wargames Dead Code today, I was getting DD+ but only 384-480SD for video today. Erased I got 1080HD DD+, same with Mission Impossible Ghost Protocol tonight. Last night we were seeing 384-480SD and Multi-In on Tanked, which should have been 720p/1080, but was not. We are on the East side of the Mississippi, so who knows what was going on yesterday, or earlier today.
post #2901 of 5438
It's weird how these things change over time. I'm certain that M:I Ghost Protocol did not start out as Super HD w/DD+ sound; the other 3 M:I films are 720p-only "HD available on your TV", and the first one doesn't have DD+ 5.1 sound.
post #2902 of 5438
My service provider (Brighthouse/Earthlink) doesn't have a Netflix server locally so I won't get the Super HD and that might be part of my problem. They are my only internet option as I live in an old Neighborhood that no one is eager to run new lines to.
post #2903 of 5438
Quote:
Originally Posted by mattbatt View Post

My service provider (Brighthouse/Earthlink) doesn't have a Netflix server locally so I won't get the Super HD and that might be part of my problem. They are my only internet option as I live in an old Neighborhood that no one is eager to run new lines to.
No provider has a Netflix server. All Netflix content comes off of their CDN servers ran on Amazon's S3 Cloud storage. The following is a list of companies that use Amazon S3 Cloud storage http://aws.amazon.com/solutions/case-studies/ Also see http://techblog.netflix.com/2010/12/four-reasons-we-choose-amazons-cloud-as.html

See this from this past Christmas eve, regarding the Netflix outage then http://www.forbes.com/sites/kellyclay/2012/12/24/amazon-aws-takes-down-netflix-on-christmas-eve/ You can check the Amazon Web Service dashboard at http://status.aws.amazon.com/ if you start having issues if Netflix takes a dump like it was doing last year.
Edited by gregzoll - 9/3/13 at 11:13pm
post #2904 of 5438
Quote:
Originally Posted by gregzoll View Post

No provider has a Netflix server. All Netflix content comes off of their CDN servers ran on Amazon's S3 Cloud storage.

gregzoli, as I've told you before that's apparently not true. They use AWS servers for something, but it seems to be some sort of supervisory function. I think that the web API that the players use is on those servers; when they look up lists of titles and download title poster art and descriptions for display in their browsers and title pages they get them from databases served by AWS and when they request playback the AWS servers allocate content servers to the task. Those content servers are in other commercial CDNs, principally Limelight, Level 3 and Akamai, with some use of a couple of others. If you're running Win8, you can check that yourself using the procedure outlined in this post. As you can see in the following example, the Netflix app (tiny window snapped on the left) is maintaining a connection to an Akamai server and an AWS one; in the previous second it received 300 KB (2400 Kb) from the Akamai server and only 41 bytes from the AWS one.

Resource Monitoring Win8 Netflix App (Click to show)
NetflixAppMonitoring.jpg

The way that they appear to use the AWS servers makes them crucial to the process; if they're not up you can't get to the content servers. Sort of like losing the remote for a device with no physical controls.

Super HD video encodes come only from Netflix's Open Connect CDN. When ISPs sign up for that Netflix sets them up with a more direct connection to their CDN and if the provider's network is large enough they will install one or more caching servers in or near their networks. Netflix claims that these caches have a 70-90% hit rate; 70-90% of all title requests will be satisfied by streaming them from those caches without the content crossing the Internet at all.
Edited by michaeltscott - 9/3/13 at 11:49pm
post #2905 of 5438
Michael we all understand that, so why keep repeating. And again, no ISP actually physically owns a CDN as my reply to the OP. As for the Amazon S3 servers, yes if you lose them as what happened in December last year, everything stops from there. BTW, I do not use Windows 8 to watch Netflix, so it is really a moot point bringing that up in the subject. Level3 is used as a Backbone for all ISP's, Limelight Networks is basically used by Microsoft for routing traffic to their consumers, along with other customers, by operating their own private 8 Tbit/s Fiber last 900 mile network. As for Akami, again Microsoft uses them for content delivery, along with other providers. Yes also Netflix did before they started to use their own CDN for the Open Connect platform, but still rely on Amazon, Akami, Limelight & Level3 for the rest of the delivery.

You will also find that the numbers are very low of those users using Windows 8 actually, along with even using the Netflix Metro app itself for watching content. Most people either will use a stand alone delivery device, Blu-Ray player, PS-3, Xbox, Wii, tablet or smartphone for watching, if they do not use a laptop or desktop, with the laptop becoming the most common by users for home computing now.

I am not going to argue that there is a problem with Netflix and the fact that they cannot handle the load at certain periods when there are more users watching content; then their servers can handle the load. You have to also look at the big picture, that all that traffic is also killing the downstream delivery network that those users have to travel through, when streaming content through Netflix.

Face the facts that Netflix has learned a lot in the past year, they still have issues with certain programs that have a higher demand. They also were not ready for the kind of demand that they could not imagine, when they first came up with the ability to offer programming through streaming platforms.

Even if all ISP's decide to go with the Open Connect CDN, still it comes down to that Netflix cannot handle the demand that the end users are placing on their servers, and all networks that traffic has to pass through. That is why I keep stating that it is not a ISP issue or platform issue, it is a provider issue (ie Netflix), that is the problem.

There is plenty of bandwidth available out there, but there are also situations that you have some users that kill Nodes, by downloading Terabytes, even Petabytes of data, because they feel that they can, which in turn kills the network for everyone else that wants to use it for what they wish to do on the Internet.
post #2906 of 5438
I agree with gregzoll on this one but I do think that Netflix may have to move to regional servers. Also companies that have been using "cloud services" are beginning to find they may not be worth it.
post #2907 of 5438
Quote:
Originally Posted by gregzoll View Post

Michael we all understand that, so why keep repeating.

I repeat this because you repeated your claims. If you say something that I disagree with in a thread that I follow I'll probably post to dispute it.
Quote:
You will also find that the numbers are very low of those users using Windows 8 actually, along with even using the Netflix Metro app itself for watching content. Most people either will use a stand alone delivery device, Blu-Ray player, PS-3, Xbox, Wii, tablet or smartphone for watching, if they do not use a laptop or desktop, with the laptop becoming the most common by users for home computing now.

Two years ago a Nielsen study found that 42% of Netflix customers stream to their PCs. That number has probably changed some since but my guess is that it's still high. I use the Win8 app because, using the Windows Resource Monitor, it's easier to get isolated specific connection information. It's also currently the only Windows Netflix player which can play the 1080p encodes and DD+ sound when available (they're replacing Silverlight with an HTML5 player which will at least be able to stream 1080p). You can do the same type of experiments using the Win7 version of the Resource Monitor (it hasn't changed much) while streaming Netflix from the Silverlight web site player. It really doesn't seem to matter; all the other platforms open connections on servers in the same set of CDNs.

I found "Unreeling Netflix: Understanding and Improving Multi-CDN Movie Delivery", a research paper delivered at an IEEE conference in 2012. They did the same thing that I did (in a much more methodical fashion), playing Netflix streams and observing what connections the players open on what servers. They only observed what happened when playing Netflix streams in the web site player; I got much the same results looking at what happens on other platforms. From their paper:
Quote:
  • Amazon cloud. Except for www.netflix.com which is hosted by Netflix, most of the other Netflix servers such as agmoviecontrol.netflix.com and movies.netflix.com are served off the Amazon cloud [10]. [9] indicates that Netflix uses various Amazon cloud services, ranging from EC2 and S3, to SDB and VPC [10]. Key functions, such as content ingestion, log recording/analysis, DRM, CDN routing, user sign-in, and mobile device support, are all done in Amazon cloud.
  • Content Distribution Networks (CDNs). Netflix employs multiple CDNs to deliver the video content to end users. The encoded and DRM protected videos are sourced in Amazon cloud and copied to CDNs. Netflix employs three CDNs: Akamai, LimeLight, and Level-3. For the same video with the same quality level, the same encoded content is delivered from all three CDNs

(Emphasis added). These guys went further and sniffed out packets which rank the content streaming CDNs in order of preference. Like me, they came to the conclusion that while Netflix makes extensive use of Amazon CDN servers they do not directly stream content from them.

When Netflix announced Open Connect and their intention to eventually drop the use of the commercial CDNs in mid 2012, shares of Limelight, Akamai and Level 3 all took a hit. Except for Limelight, whose revenues from Netflix are estimated to be 11% of their gross (they're the smallest of the three), the loss of Netflix's business is not expected to have much long term impact. Since it's expected to be years before Netflix drops the use of these CDNs Limelight has plenty of time to deal.
Quote:
Even if all ISP's decide to go with the Open Connect CDN, still it comes down to that Netflix cannot handle the demand that the end users are placing on their servers, and all networks that traffic has to pass through. That is why I keep stating that it is not a ISP issue or platform issue, it is a provider issue (ie Netflix), that is the problem.

When an ISP gets set up for Open Connect they get directly connected to Netflix's CDN at one of the peering locations; traffic between them and Netflix does not cross other people's networks. Additionally large ISP networks can install Netflix caches in their networks and if what a customer wants to play is in one of those caches it gets streamed from within the WAN without crossing the Internet at all. Netflix claims a 70-90% hit rate on those caches, depending on the country. If all of the ISPs set up for Open Connect access and installed those edge cache servers in their WANs it would result in a massive reduction in Netflix traffic on the Internet. Unfortunately the largest of the ISPs offer competing network video services (and/or have strong ties to one or more of the commercial CDNs); convincing them to take action which will improve Netflix's service is not easy.
post #2908 of 5438
I stream much stuff on Netflix from my laptop too using the Windows 8 app. That is what annoys me about certain studios (FOX I hate you) that will only let you stream in HD from your TV and not any other device hence my post michaelscott keeps pointing out.

Too tell the truth I did not really like Open Connect the days I had it. The Roku still steamed like crud yet the PS3 had no problems as usual. It still took the same amount of time to ramp up on my PS3 to high quality.

It is just that I really did not see much of a difference in PQ from the 3850 kbps regular HD over the 5800 kbps Super HD except that I used over 40 GB of bandwidth in the four days I had it do to a glitch and not everything I watched was even in HD most of what I was watching was shows like Hercules and Xena which are only in SD. I know TWC does not have a cap but when I primary watch things on Netflix I could see them sending me a letter saying I am using over 300 GB of data which I would use in a months time.
eek.gif
Edited by reddice - 9/4/13 at 2:42pm
post #2909 of 5438
Quote:
Originally Posted by reddice View Post


Too tell the truth I did not really like Open Connect the days I had it. The Roku still steamed like crud yet the PS3 had no problems as usual. It still took the same amount of time to ramp up on my PS3 to high quality.:


Then can someone explain why I have no issues with my Roku 2 using Cablevision?



Ian
post #2910 of 5438
Quote:
Originally Posted by reddice View Post

Too tell the truth I did not really like Open Connect the days I had it. The Roku still steamed like crud yet the PS3 had no problems as usual. It still took the same amount of time to ramp up on my PS3 to high quality.

It is just that I really did not see much of a difference in PQ from the 3850 kbps regular HD over the 5800 kbps Super HD except that I used over 40 GB of bandwidth in the four days I had it do to a glitch and not everything I watched was even in HD most of what I was watching was shows like Hercules and Xena which are only in SD. I know TWC does not have a cap but when I primary watch things on Netflix I could see them sending me a letter saying I am using over 300 GB of data which I would use in a months time.

Most of the people who've posted saying that they really appreciate the improvement of Super HD are viewing on 65" or bigger screens. I can tell the difference on my 46" viewed from 6-8 feet, but it's certainly not worth the additional bandwidth for a great deal of what I watch on Netflix. I've been watching so much Netflix during the summer television hiatus that I was exceeding the 300 GB cap on my 25 Mbps service (before that, even with Super HD, we were never exceeding 200 GB). To solve the problem I upgraded to the 50 Mbps service tier (400 GB cap) and set the output of my Roku 3 to 720p and use that for most of my Netflix viewing. If I think that a title warrants the increased PQ I watch it with something else, typically my WD TV Live. I'm still exceeding 300 GB; last month I hit 343 GB. When my fall TV series are back I'll start watching HD Netflix at 1080p again.
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