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Any chance for better SD?

Discussion in 'DIRECTV Programming' started by pablo, Feb 12, 2010.

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  1. pablo

    pablo Icon

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    I know most here are concerned with HD, and so am I. But there are some channels that are still SD and will remain so for the foreseeable future. Additionally, my parents, who are Russian-speaking, subscribe to the RussianDirect II package, and those eight Russian SD channels look terrible. We all know DirecTV's SD quality has become nearly unwatchable, especially as compared with HD. But even other providers' SD channels look comparatively better. So, while everyone's priorities are understandably with HD right now, I wonder if D12 means anything for improving SD quality?
     
  2. pappy97

    pappy97 Icon

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    My understanding is that no matter what, PQ of internationals will also suffer. Frankly DirecTV understands that it's the content that gets subs to international packages, and not PQ/AQ. Even if it's barely watchable it will get the same amount of subs as if it had high quality SD or HD.

    AFAIK, D12 won't improve SD quality at all, let alone for internationals.
     
  3. Avder

    Avder Hall Of Fame

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    Aren't the SD channels eventually going to get switched over to MPEG4? And if so, will they get the same bitrate as they do now in MPEG2? Or is D* just going to end up squishing it further, so it looks just as crappy in MPEG4 as it does now?
     
  4. pablo

    pablo Icon

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    Switching SD channels to a better codec would be just awesome, if it's something like upconverted SD we see on many HD channels.
     
  5. harsh

    harsh Beware the Attack Basset

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    D12 should have no impact on SD PQ. What's going to have to happen there is that DIRECTV is going to have to start using some of their available space on 110W and/or 119W.

    Because most of it is SD and MPEG2, those who watch it have that kind of equipment. Forcing them all to upgrade to HD equipment to get better looking SD programming is a tough road.

    The solution is probably to look to one of the alternative sources.
     
  6. oldcrooner

    oldcrooner Godfather

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    I have said it before and I'll now say it again....Directv should be very ashamed of the abominable video quality of its SD programming. I've been a Directv subscriber for over a decade and I know it was not always so. It was never as good as that of Primestar which they assimilated but was quite acceptable. Over the years the quality slowly turned into dreck. I'm a big fan of HD but I continue to feel cheated by the picture quality of channels that are not available in HD. Why they feel this is an acceptable way to do business I will never understand. :( They should be actively working towards correcting this bad situation by whatever means necessary.
     
  7. P Smith

    P Smith Mr. FixAnything

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    Because ppl still watching and still pay for the bad SD. Only money shortage could change the trend. But afraid it will just cease those international channels.
     
  8. mdavej

    mdavej Hall Of Fame

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    Terrible SD PQ is the number one reason I'm jumping to U-verse if it ever gets to my street. Cable in my area has even worse SD than D* and FIOS will never come, so U-verse is my only other option. I know my HD streams are limited with U-verse, but I only need 2 streams, and their SD is excellent. If D* would dial back the SD compression a little and catch up on HD content, I'd be a happy camper.
     
  9. ejjames

    ejjames Icon

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    When I was at USSB, we took pride in our quality. I could switch back and forth between out downlink and return signal and, aside from the delay, could not tell the difference.

    Then again, we only had about 30 channels about 5 per transponder, so we could be generous. The technology was very different 10 years ago. I don't know if we could have "down rezed" to 480x480 even if we wanted to.
     
  10. kevinturcotte

    kevinturcotte New Member

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    How much room would be available for SD channels of 119 and 110 if they removed all the HD programming today? What would be nice is if they took some of the SD channels that already have an HD equivalent and moved them onto 119 and 110. That way, those who only get 99, 101, and 103 wouldn't be missing any channels since they're already in HD, and it would free up some bandwidth on 101.
     
  11. RAD

    RAD Well-Known Member

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    Then what do you do for the majority of DirecTV customers that don't have HD service, only SD? DirecTV would then need to have a truck roll to replace the 101 only dish that's installed with a new dish and also replace receivers. If you're going to do that why not just replace all the MPEG2 only STB's with MPEG2/4 boxes and then switch all the channels to MPEG4 and gain a ton of capacity?
     
  12. kevinturcotte

    kevinturcotte New Member

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    Why would you have to replace receivers? Can't all receivers see 110 and 119? And how many SD only customers have the original round dish? I did just discover the main problem though. Those with 99, 101, and 103 LNBs that also have SD receivers. Those receivers wouldn't be able to see the additional SD channels.
     
  13. curt8403

    curt8403 Hall Of Fame

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    wowzers. the existing SD sats cannot be upgraded to handle the MPEG 4 signal and so going to all MPEG4 would toast the existing sats/
    even though SD may be an issue with Directv it is still better than the SD on Crumcrash
     
  14. kevinturcotte

    kevinturcotte New Member

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    Existing satellites would be fine if they went to ALL MPEG-4 right now, right? They're just passing a signal. It's the LNBs and receivers that would have a problem.
     
  15. raoul5788

    raoul5788 Guest

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    The satellite doesn't care if the signal is encoded with mpeg2, mpeg4, or mpeg4000. It's the receiver that needs to be compatible. Now if you are talking about ka or ku, that's a different story.
     
  16. P Smith

    P Smith Mr. FixAnything

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    Back to the topic: chances are nil.

    :backtotop
     
  17. raoul5788

    raoul5788 Guest

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    I wouldn't say nil. EVENTUALLY, there will be a conversion to mpeg4 even for sd, I think. That should significantly improve pq.
     
  18. kevinturcotte

    kevinturcotte New Member

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    Course, by that time, what will actually be left in SD? No actual requirement for channels to put out an HD version of their channel, but competition pretty much requires it.
     
  19. P Smith

    P Smith Mr. FixAnything

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    The rule is GIGO.
    As you probably aware, dish implement the switchover SD MPEG-2 to SD MPEG-4 for EA customers. I don't see any reports about "significantly improve pq" on SD channels. Zilch, nada, nil.
     
  20. pablo

    pablo Icon

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    What would it take for DirecTV to have SD close to upconverted SD quality? Is that even feasible?
     

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