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Digital Concert Hall dot com, Berlin Philharmoniker

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
Digital Concert Hall dot com, aka Berlin Philharmoniker is accessible via http//internet.sony.tv/berlinphil or http://www.digitalconcerthall.com

Live broadcasts are accessible only on subscription via P.C.'s with Flash 10 (at the time of writing this original post, February 5, 2011).

On-demand HD video is accessible on subscription via some Sony internet enabled HDTV's and Blu-Ray Players and on P.C.'s.

One purpose of this thread is to discuss the technical capabilities of the live and on-demand historical streams.

A second purpose of this discussion thread is to point out to curious consumers particular performances worthy of consideration.

At this time, it looks like there are three (3) different types of subscriptions available: a) Daily, b) Monthly and c) Annual.

Given that I just signed up for the monthly, I've already discovered some gem performances:

18/12/2010
Berliner Philharmoniker
Neeme Järvi
Arcadi Volodos

Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov
Suite from the opera-ballet Mlada (19:10)
Piotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky

Piano Concerto No. 1 in B flat minor (43:48)
Arcadi Volodos Piano

Sergei Taneyev
Symphony No. 4 in C minor
(45:56)

I've only noticed this service mentioned once in one other thread within AVS -- Blu Ray player discussion.

Does anyone know what the audio bit-stream code and rate is for this pay-subscription service ? The reason I'm asking is because I'm feeding from a Sony HX-701-55 internet HDTV thru toslink fiber optic to a Marantz receiver. Am wondering if the toslink fiber optic cable might throttle the audio stream. Am wondering if I acquire a Sony 770 (or soon to be 780) Blu-Ray player that has the conversion widget and then feed HDMI from that (hypothetical) Sony 770 or 780 to the Marantz receiver, if the resulting audio will sound even better ?

Don't get me wrong... it sounds pretty darn good presently. Just surprised it is stereo audio. Am wondering if that is a limitation of the firmware software wideget inside this particular model of Sony internet HDTV. Numerous overhead microphones are visible within the video. It seems that the perception that the on-demand feed has been mixed to emphasize certain lead instrumentals at particular times.

Anyway, I'm curious what others think of the Berlin Philharmoniker internet stream audio/visual service titled "Digital Concert Hall dot com". Seems like a pretty good value to me. World class performances in a state-of-the-art facility for a reasonable "admission" or "access" fee.

Signed,


Leo Henton

just a consumer

not affiliated with Sony
post #2 of 12
After watching last week's performance of Mahler #3, I'm moving up to Sony's 46" Google HD TV and upgrading my sound system to 5.1. Don't know if I can even get BPO online there but if not, I'll take it back to Best Buy. I agree with all you've said...it's really a bargain.
post #3 of 12
At this time, I'm thinking of upgrading to a Sony BDP-790 Blue ray player in order to enjoy enhanced audio capability of Digital Concert Hal "dot" com. I'm under the impression the Berlin Philimoniker has upgraded their source technology to allow live-streaming to some or most 2011-2012 Sony products.

Am bumping this thread to ask for advice from any lurkers / readers / posters that have more current Sony equipment than I. Does the Sony 2012 Sony products sound better and does the audio codec feed thru HDMI (better than a toslink spdif connection) ? Without first hand knowledge, it is only an assumption that audio codec actually feeds thru HDMI. Questions submitted to Berlin Philamoniker or Sony are both met with a shrug.

Thanks for your time and consideration.
Edited by Leo Henton - 9/26/12 at 11:51am
post #4 of 12
I have FIOS 75MB/35MB fiber service that is rock solid and never goes below 70MB down. I have two Sony 5100 new Blu-ray players.

While I can play the Berlin recordings with no problem on my PC, my hardwired Blu-ray players in different rooms both stop about every 2-3 minutes for about a minute claiming I have a low speed internet problem. I can test before, during and after the glitches and I see no measured drop at all, so I think it is something to do with the player. I tried running them wireless, but that didn't help.

Sony makes one higher end model now called an S790. Perhaps that would fix my problem.

I don't a clue as to what is going on. I can stream Netflix through the player ok.

Help please
post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 
Standby. Have recently purchased a sony 5100, but have not hooked it up yet. Will let you know how it goes with digitalconcerthall
post #6 of 12
Thread Starter 
Standby due to technical difficulties, as the screen used to say in the Old Days. Presently cannot get any video display on Sony BDP-S5100. Will keep at it. Forgot to reboot at 1 a/m/ earlier today.
post #7 of 12
Thread Starter 
Sony S5100 locked up roally while attempting to playnhk tv app over net. Still have not linked to digitalconcerthall yet.
post #8 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Leo Henton View Post

At this time, I'm thinking of upgrading to a Sony BDP-790 Blue ray player in order to enjoy enhanced audio capability of Digital Concert Hal "dot" com. I'm under the impression the Berlin Philimoniker has upgraded their source technology to allow live-streaming to some or most 2011-2012 Sony products.

Am bumping this thread to ask for advice from any lurkers / readers / posters that have more current Sony equipment than I. Does the Sony 2012 Sony products sound better and does the audio codec feed thru HDMI (better than a toslink spdif connection) ? Without first hand knowledge, it is only an assumption that audio codec actually feeds thru HDMI. Questions submitted to Berlin Philarmoniker or Sony are both met with a shrug.

Thanks for your time and consideration.

We've been using our Sony NSC-GS8 Google TV unit for a couple of months. So far, the archived Philharmoniker concerts have been pretty much flawless, end to end, but we were very disappointed with the first live concert we tried to watch last week. It was disastrous, wit the picture almost constantly breaking up. The audio was OK, generally, but unfortunately the transmission froze up completely every few minutes, or so, and that condition continued throughout the concert. After that completed, we immediately selected another archived concert, and it was flawless, again, so it seems there is some key difference with archival vs. live that I don't yet understand. I'm thinking it was a problem with the demands of live streaming, and that perhaps it is intolerant of retransmissions, since it is real-time, as opposed to archival streams, where perhaps retries are permitted. That might cover up marginality in the transmisison of signal, whereas it falls on its butt when realtime.

I have a request in to the Berlin Philharmoniker for help or advice. They acknowledged my query, but haven't responded to the question yet, however. I did ask them if there is any test available that might emulate the streaming demands, that we could use for diagnostic purposes. I would rather be doing my trial and error attempts to fix it now, rather than while a live concert is in progress.

I haven't compared sound quality between spdif and HDMI yet. I have it set up to use the spdif connection, and the sound quality is very good, I think. I know the dynamic range is very wide, and I don't hear any distortion at all, through our Onkyo 717 amp and JBL corner horn speakers.

FWIW - We're on TWC, with 20mbps down and 2 mpbs up.
Edited by vicw - 8/27/13 at 9:01pm
post #9 of 12
I expect that subscribers to the Berlin Philharmoniker series who are also active on AVS may be few and far between, but I would really appreciate any feedback regarding the playback behavior with the most recent concert, first of the 2013-2014 season, which included the last three Mozart symphonies. We had a terrible time with trying to watch that concert live, with pretty constant breakup of video, occasional sound issues, and frequent freezes, despite our success with playback of archived concerts.

After about a week, they posted the concert in the archive, which we tried to watch, but even though the selection display for the concert appeared normally on the screen, any selection to watch the concert, or watch any of the individual symphonies resulted in a message stating "That video doesn't exist." That is mighty frustrating for us. We have made an inquiry to the Berlin folks, but no response to that yet.

If any of you have had a similar experience, or success with the archival version of that concert on your Sony NSZ-GS8 or 7, or other Sony device, I hope you can post that on this thread.
Edited by vicw - 8/31/13 at 8:40pm
post #10 of 12
Thread Starter 
For what it is worth I returned the Sony S5100 bluray player months ago. Have acquired Samsung plama 64F8500 hdtv recently. Will report on that experience with digitalconcerthall next week.
post #11 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lionanimal View Post

For what it is worth I returned the Sony S5100 bluray player months ago. Have acquired Samsung plama 64F8500 hdtv recently. Will report on that experience with digitalconcerthall next week.

I'm curious about your experience with digitconcerthall that might be the cause of you returning the S5100.

In my case, on the Sony GS8 GoogleTV unit, I have superb streaming and play on archived concerts, but live streaming has been a disaster throughout the two concerts that we have tried to watch live. Berlin tells me they don't have a problem.
post #12 of 12
So far, I've tried to watch every live Berlin Philharmoniker concert of the season, probably 7 or 8 of them, on my Sony NSC-GS8 with no success. Whereas Archived concerts stream with no problems, the Live concerts invariably are a mess, with picture artifacts, smearing where movement occurs, trashed screens, and frequent freezes. I just went through an extensive discussion on the Sony Community Forum trying to get to the source of that problem. I did get some good support, and they had me perform a variety of tests, and configuration changes, with the results pointing to a probably deficiency in the Sony unit, either my individual unit, the unit design or something deficient in the firmware.

Having reached that point, my detailed thread was unceremoniously removed from the forum. I guess the Sony corporate interest took over, and they didn't want anything that appeared to be an unsolvable Sony problem on the forum.

Fortunately, I just discovered that my cheap little LG BluRay player, Model BP220, has the Berlin App on their list of available apps, so I installed it, and used it this morning to play a live concert. To my shock, delight and amazement, the little LG unit performed flawlessly. I watched the concert for over an hour, and it delivered clean HD, with absolutely no issues. After an hour, I switched back to the Sony, to check it. The Sony, as always, was a mess, so I'm now confident that the problem is unique to the Sony GS8 - perhaps just mine, perhaps all of them.

I guess my next move is to ask Sony for a replacement unit, in the hope that the problem is just in mine, although I would bet that all of them are the same.
Edited by vicw - 10/27/13 at 10:12am
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