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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm using Windows 7 Media Center to record my favorite HD programs off of Comcast cable. When I play them back via my PS3, they have very fine pixels in that don't look focused, and the pixels shift around distracting us from watching the show. I expected to get the same quality that I can get if I receive the channel directly to my HDTV. I have a 61" Samsung LED DLP that always looks amazing with any other HD content. What HD Tivo records looks very good too. It is only the Hauppauge HVR-1600 that is not recording well enough to look good on my biggest TV. The monitor on the PC that is doing the recording is a 26" Samsung HDTV, and the recordings on it are flawless.


Is this typical of this card? Is there another card I can get to get better HD recordings that will look very good at 61"?


Thanks for any guidance on this. Joe
 

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Are you recording Clear QAM HD channels with the HVR-1600? If so, the recordings should be identical to the original broadcast.


Analog channels must be converted to digital and then encoded, so quality loss is normal on that content.
 

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Since the recordings you receive should be identical it is far more likely the degradation in signal quality is a function of the Player program, the decoder software/firmware, and/or the graphics card you are uisng.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I was really hoping that someone who uses the same hardware, HVR-1600 and Ps3 to play it, would tell me which is the weakest link. Can I change from media center to BeyondTV and get better results?


These are Clear QAM channels, and when the TV views them directly, the picture is perfect on the 61" set. So we know it isn't the TV. Without having a long cable to run across my house, I can't drive the TV directly from the PC. Maybe I will move it to do this test.


Quote:
Originally Posted by walford /forum/post/18207574


Since the recordings you receive should be identical it is far more likely the degradation in signal quality is a function of the Player program, the decoder software/firmware, and/or the graphics card you are uisng.
 

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The weakest link is either the player program you are using or your graphics card and since we do not know what either of them are on your system we can't guess which.

What resolution are you outputting over what interface to your TV from what make/model of graphics card when using Media Center?

I think you can try a trial of either BeyondTV or SageTV I and see if either one helps.

Is their any difference in PQ between the 720p digital broadcasts from ABC and FOX from the 1080i broadcasts from CBS, NBC and PBS channel?

If you are using two displays are they configured in clone or extended desktop mode and which one is the primary display?

There is absolutly nothing wrong with the tuner card or it's recordings since you stated that with your PC monitor everything is flawless.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The PC that is recording has a Nvidia video card, but that should only be irrelevant when watching the videos locally. The video in question is streamed to the PS3, and it outputs at 1080P to the TV via HDMI.

When I said that the video looks perfect on the display of the computer that records it, it is a 27" HDTV. At 27", it doesn't take 1080 to look like good HD, but it does at 61"


So the output is the PS3, the recording is made with the HVR-1600 on Win7 Media Center. What video card is on the server should not matter, I am not having any problem with how it looks on the PC.


I checked the seatings on Media Center and it is set to Best quality.


Isn't there anybody doing the same, viewing recorded Media Center TV on a PS3 connected to a big HDTV?

I could copy the TV shows directly to the PS3 because it has a 250G drive and I don't use it to play games. I don't think that would change the quality of what I see on the 61" TV.


What we see is on a HD picture where when there is lots of screen motion, some of the pixels for the background looked like they are moving in random, or maybe not moving at all, in any case it looks bad. The same HD recordings coming off of my HD Tivo are flawless. So it's not the TV that is the problem.


Right now it looks like the PS3, while being grate with Blue-ray, can't produce a full HD pictuure from Windows media Tv files. I think they are WTV. If I use BeyondTV (to record only) , which I have, I am not so sure that the PS3 will play the files it creates without some sort of conversion.
 

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My Bad,

I missed the fact that the PS3 is doing all of the processing of the processing of the incoming signal when it is going to the DLP HDTV.

So yes you are correct none of the features of the host computer are involved.

The quality setting in MC only sets the coding bit encoding rate for anlaog source content it has nothing to do with digtial source content.

Try right clicking on one of the recorded WTV files so you can quickly convert it to DVR-MS format and try that on the PS3.

Is their a differnce based on 720p or 1080i channel sources when played on the PS3?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The source is 1080i and the PS3 is set to 1080P (I think). I know I set it to its top resolution once I got a good HDMI cable on it. I will try the conversion and see what the difference is between the original and it.
 

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CBS and NBC broadcast in 1080i/60, ABC and Fox broadcast in 720p/60. If you are outputting 1080p is it 1080p/60 or 1080p/24. I suggest that you try outputting 1080i/60 instead of 1080p since the resololution detail is the same and the workload placed on the PS3 is significanly reduced reducing the chance for dropped frames and stuttering.

The cable from the PS3 to the TV is not part of the issue since you have not problem with blu-rays.

Is the link from the PC to the PS3 a fully wired connection or is it partialy wireless?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Everything is on wire, but I do have wireless in the house. The wireless is mostly used by laptops and guests. I will check the settings on the PS3, I'm not sure what it will let me change.

I wish someone who was streaming to their PS3 would chime in here and tell us what they are doing.

Thanks for your input. I will report back as soon as I can makes the changes and test again.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I called Hauppage support and they told me that the HVR-1600 just records what it get. If I have trouble viewing it on my Big TV, something is happeing to the file on its way, This points to the PS3 not displaying the files creadted by Windows 7 Media Center in the full resolution that they were recorded.

My next test will be to use the WDTV, and the WDTV Live to playback the same files. I'm not sure it will be good news if they do work better than the PS3. That will make the PS3 a poor chouce to stream off of Windows 7 Media Center. I will update once I test it.
 

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As I stated before thast since the recordings on your 26" monitor look fine there is nothing wrong with the tuner or the program that you are using to record from it.

I sugget you start a new thread with "PS3" in a subject line the better descibes that you only have PQ problems playing HD programs streaming them from your PC to the PS3.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
The recordings look the same when played through the WDTV Live. My next test will be to move the PC to the Bedroom and connect it directly to the 61" Samsung.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Update: Moved the PC to the 61" TV and connected it directly to the TV with HDMI. The picture was flawless.


I'm guessing that Microsoft is behind this. Is the format that Windows Media Player proprietary to Microsoft? I have to assume that nobody can stream the Microsoft files as well as Microsoft can play them. Is this another case of Microsoft not telling developers all of their secrets in order to hurt their business? From this exercise, someone might believe that the WDTV Live and the PS3 are poor choices for streaming video. I've come to the conclusion that I love the Windows 7 Media center system and I won't condemn my PS3 or WDTV Live, but I might buy a small form factor PC to run the Windows 7 Media Center in place of a Tivo Series II. It will be good to have two HD recorders, even if one of them can only record Clear QAM, and analog cable channels. This will be remedied when Ceton releases their Cable Card tuners in the near future. Even Comcast is aware of the Ceton products that will soon hit the market. They recommended that I wait for them when I asked them if they could rent me a Cable Card tuner for my PC.


I have a Beyond TV and Beyond Media license, but I really love the way Windows Media functions. They clearly want to put some of their competitors out of business.


So I am in the market to find (preferably HP) small form PC that is quite and powerful enough to record with my HVR-1600. That means it has to have one PCI slot. The PC I do it on now can record in the background and let me do anything else at the same time. That won't be necessary with the new system, it will be dedicated to HDTV and Media playing. I found a couple of cheap products that have pulled my configuration together nicely. They both came from Meritonline. One is a HD switch with IR control, and the other is a IR controller for the PC. The HD switch has three ports in and one out. It has a small remote with three buttons, each switches the HDMI to another port. The unique things about it are that it is very small. It does not require a power supply. It automatically switches to the next port when you turn one of the connected devices off. It worked perfectly with my PS3, HD Tivo, and WDTV Live. I have a Blue-Link remote that has the three control buttons programmed to the first three color codes buttons that the very bottom. It switches very fast and is HDMI 1.3 compliant.


This is the end to this tread unless someone has more to ad about streaming Microsoft .WTV files as well as Microsoft can. Thanks for your feedback Walford. Joe
 
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