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Tennis Anyone? French Open on DIRECTV

Discussion in 'DIRECTV Programming' started by Tom Robertson, May 17, 2010.

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  1. QuickDrop

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    Jul 20, 2007
    No, it's the same. Look up previous threads on the topic and you will see the same complaints.

    Also, here are links to the AVSForum (I think that's safe to post.) about the 2009 Australian and French Opens and at least one them contain comments from someone who worked on the technical end for Tennis Channel/ESPN and isn't hesitant about acknowledging a lot are SD 16x9 and that it isn't economically feasible to broadcast all feeds in HD.

    http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1109899
    http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1251660

    D* is broadcasting the feeds ESPN provide. You can criticize them for "hyping" them as HD, but they've been providing the same feeds with the same marketing for years, which is somewhat understandable since most American consumers just don't have a concept that 16x9 content has often been filmed in SD.

    If this is the first time you are noticing the issue, it's possible that with D* switching programing from D10 to D12, plus the addition of more HD, D* is compressing the channels more. (Sixto is usually up on these things.)

    On a side note, I've tended to prefer the 16x9 SD coverage compared with ESPN network coverage. The announcing is usually better and the screen isn't filled with graphics.
     
  2. Mark Walters

    Mark Walters Legend

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    Sep 21, 2009


    Nope - not at all - It looked like the HD picture on ESPN2 and TC.
     
  3. QuickDrop

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    Last year's French Open thread from this forum, halfway down someone notes his disappointment with SD feeds being marked as HD.:

    http://www.dbstalk.com/showthread.php?t=158412&highlight=french+open

    This might be the first time you've noticed it, but it has occurred for years.
     
  4. Maleman

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    Apr 17, 2007
    I have seen the other majors and they were all HD I believe or at least a much better picture than whatever this is lol

    Very dissappointing.

    I don't know how to tweet but I would send one to Directv if I knew. I do have a twitter account just don't know how to tweet.

    Just noticed on a tweet from directv a few days ago, "don't forget-complimentary "enhanced" lol coverage of the french open"
     
  5. Mark Walters

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    Sep 21, 2009
    Thanks for the info QD. I could of sworn this wasn't an issue last year, but what is puzzling is how ESPN will flip the court coverage around Roland Garros and the coverage will be in HD on 209/702. I can't imagine ESPN & D* are using different cameras on the various courts. In fact when you look at the Mix channel (incidentally in HD) the two feeds are in sync but with different announcers. For example, the Gulbis match earlier was on 704 and ESPN was covering another match. Soon after ESPN picked up the coverage it was in HD while the 704 remained in SD. When ESPN picks up the coverage on 704, they are using the same cameras right? So if ESPN can broadcast all the different courts in HD why wouldn't it be the same with the D* coverage?

    Maleman, I have your answer - D* told me to reset my receiver to get the crystal-clear HD :lol::lol::lol: - Yep that's what they told me. In their defense I never tried it -- but that would mean we all would have to go through the 10-min reset..
     
  6. QuickDrop

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    I don't know enough about the technical side (there is usually someone over at AVSForum who can explain it better), but basically it's a question of bandwidth. ESPN simply doesn't have the necessary satellite bandwidth to provide seven HD streams of tennis. Whatever they are showing on their primary channel will be uplinked in HD, even if they are switching back and forth. I believe this is one of the reasons why their Gameplan package hasn't gone HD yet. I also remember a couple years ago when their international futball and tennis coverage came into conflict and you could tell their tennis coverage was suffering because of it.

    As for the same feed/different announcers thing, the host broadcasters provide the same feed internationally to everyone. D* keeps the international English broadcast as is. ESPN adds their own announcers and graphics. If you catch it, sometimes the Tennis Channel runs over their allotted time and both they and ESPN carry the end of the same match. The video feed is the same but the announcers and graphics are specific to each channel.

    I should note that I'm not an expert on this aspect of things, but more or less I think I got the gist correct.
     
  7. Mark Walters

    Mark Walters Legend

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    Sep 21, 2009
    You make interesting points but ESPN has had this coverage for over a year now after taking it from USA Network. I remember for sure that the last two majors had all seven channels in HD. For example the Aussie Open which I saw with my own eyes in January had all 700s in HD and it was ESPN/TC coverage like this major. Last year's US OPEN was on ESPN and all the 700 channels were in HD. So it remains a bit perplexing. I guarantee you when Wimbledon comes around that all the 700s will be in HD.

    Also keep in mind that most of these matches are all going on at the same time so they would of had to have HD cameras on all these courts working at the same time in order to show them in HD live or on replay.
     
  8. QuickDrop

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    USA only ever had the domestic rights to the US Open. The French and Australian were always broadcast by ESPN, until The Tennis Channel got the rights to one of them. Then TTC and ESPN made a deal to share coverage for both tournaments.

    As for the difference experiences between the 2010 Australian Open and the 2010 French Open, you might be right. Though I have found stray comments about them being widescreen SD, I can't find the absolute evidence that I can find for last year's French and Australian Open. It's also tough because ESPN coverage of the tennis majors last year was infamously horrible, either cutting off half the picture or they windowboxed it so they could have tickers on both the top and bottom of screen.

    A couple things do need to be pointed out. Each major is depend on it's original country broadcast network for the quality of their feeds. In the case of the U.S., these feeds then are usually handled by ESPN who then transmit them to their own network, their on-line networks, and DirecTV. DirecTV is simply airing the feeds ESPN (or TTC) provides them which are first provided by French broadcasters. It possible that this year's Australian Open was broadcast fully in HD and I've blurred it in my mind with previous years. I do feel the picture quality for this year's French is consistent with the picture quality I've experience watching these tournament for the past three years and three years of forum posts seem to back me up on this.
     
  9. Mark Walters

    Mark Walters Legend

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    Sep 21, 2009
    Agreed - Well the good news is Wimbledon starts less than a month and we'll get full HD on all the channels, as well as the US OPEN. In the meantime I will enjoy the network coverage of the French.
     
  10. QuickDrop

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    Quick addition, this year was actually the first time ESPN2 actually carried the Australian in true HD:

    http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1218043

    Also, it's The Tennis Channel who have television rights to The French Open, so if there has been a difference between the two tournament this year it might be due the different broadcast capabilities of the two networks.
     
  11. Maleman

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    Apr 17, 2007
    LOL at reset, they CS are reading from a script :)
     
  12. Araxen

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    I believe there is only one French Open Feed and it's a world feed, so it's just a matter of the US right holders buying enough satellite bandwidth to broadcast all the courts in HD in the US. It's either ESPN/TTC or Directv not having enough bandwidth to show all the courts in HD. All the Australian Open courts were in HD so I'm guessing it's on Directv's end and due to D10 being fixed.

    Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.
     
  13. tonyd79

    tonyd79 Hall Of Fame

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    Since DirecTV is already pushing the signal down in MPEG4 HD, that is what D10/D11/D12 do. The backhaul has nothing to do with D10.

    You are right about the Aussie Open. I lost a lot of sleep because that was the best HD I had ever seen on a live sporting event.
     
  14. Mark Walters

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    Sep 21, 2009
    Channel 701 is authentic HD...the matches look better on that channel than 703-707. Court Phillippe Chatrier is the main court covered by the networks in HD, and the biggest match of the day (Murray-Gasquet) is on Suzanne Lenglen which is also in HD when the network covers it. So the HD cameras are on the courts. The technical reasons we aren't seeing them on the individual 703-707 channels seems to be the question.
     
  15. tonyd79

    tonyd79 Hall Of Fame

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    Yes, and it has something to do with the delivery to DirecTV (or reception).

    We know there is HD on the court. And we know that DirecTV is delivering HD from the bird to the customer. So it is somewhere in between. Anywhere from production trucks to backhaul to DirecTV themselves (doubt the latter as we had true HD for the Aussie Open unless it is a compatibility issue not a capacity one).
     
  16. Mark Walters

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    I'm gonna wager it's D* themselves because the quality of the commercials look just like the quality of the matches. And most of the commercials are D* related so it has got to be them.
     
  17. Dolly

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    Long story cut short the coverage of The French Open looks AWFUL :girlscrea If I were D* and couldn't for whatever reason have full HD, I would not have done the mixed channels at The French Open. Normally D* does such a great job with these events so I'm very disappointed!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
  18. Maleman

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    Apr 17, 2007
    Agreed. I was really looking forward to it BUT the mix channels are almost unwatchable, especially that one court lol, sorry I forget what channel/court but I can't even see the ball be rallied.
     
  19. Maleman

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    Apr 17, 2007
    Well despite the lack of HD on the bonus channels, I am going to thank Directv as I just watched a highly entertaining match that has been suspended due to darkness. I would not have seen it without directv :)

    Unfortunately I will probably miss the end of it tomorrow or whenever they finish.

    A bit of drama in the Monfils/Fognini match :) it was entertaining!
     
  20. QuickDrop

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    If D* followed your suggestion, this afternoon we would have only got ESPN rerunning The Tennis Channel's 7 hour old coverage of one-sided matches and not been able to see live probably the three best women matches of the tournament so far.
     

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