DBSTalk Forum banner

Compression and widescreen HDTVs

2850 Views 29 Replies 15 Participants Last post by  The Real Filthy
I just recently bought a 55" widescreen HDTV and decided to upgrade to Dish Networks because of the poor quality of my local analog cable. However, after all the installation hassles and signing a 1 year contract, I found out that my picture quality is actually worse on many channels due to the wonderful compression "feature" that allows me to receive more (compressed) channels. I've gone through all the usual support channels and have basically been told that I have too big/nice of a TV for the signal (it's funny how they don't advertise that little tidbit).

Is there anything that I can (economically) do in the short term to decrease all of the compression artifacts (optional components, tv settings, etc.), or will I simpy have to wait for them to launch more satellites so that I can purchase more compressed programming (I'm assuming they will not opt to decrease the compression, just give me more channels that I don't want)?

Thanks in advance!
Not open for further replies.
1 - 20 of 30 Posts
Having bought such a nice TV it is well worth the effort to get a hold of the Avia Home Theater Guide DVD and follow their steps for basic TV calibration.

I did it this weekend on my straight 35" CRT TV and picture quality is a night and day difference.
I agree with Andy. First calibrate your TV using Avia or Video Essentials.

Watching Dish Network or DirecTV on large TV's has always been a problem because of the compression. Basically you will have to just live with it. Personally I use my HDTV more for watching real HDTV local programming and some Dish programming (HBO, Showtime, etc.). I also use it mostly for watching DVD's. For most of my plain vanilla Dish Network viewing I use a smaller TV because I don't want to waste precious HDTV tube life time on a crappy picture.
Watch the Charlie Chat on the 9th, call in and tell Charlie that the picture is terrible on your new television, and ask him what he's going to do to fix the problem.
Originally posted by Mark Lamutt
Watch the Charlie Chat on the 9th, call in and tell Charlie that the picture is terrible on your new television, and ask him what he's going to do to fix the problem.
Why? All he will say is, "After the merger
blah,blah, blah, world will be a perfect place,
blah, blah, end of world hunger, blah, blah. :rolleyes:
Too true...too true...but of course, if Guest calls in and mentions DBSTalk on the air, he'll at least get a DVD from us out of the deal.
AAAHHHH. Now I see. Nudge, nudge, wink, wink, say no more! ;)
Would that be a "Video Essentials" DVD????

Actually Video Essentials is this:


But I believe it's out of print so I guess your best bet would be the Avia disc.
After you do the AVIA DVD setup, spend another $300 and get your set ISF calibrated by a certified ISF technician and you will think he brought you a new TV. It may improve Dish slightly but on HD & DVD material there will be a night and day difference in what you are seeing on your new set.
I have had the same problems with DBS (echostar) and high definition TVs. To work around the problem I recommend the following steps:

1. Turn off any sharpening options on the TV

2. Turn off any edge enhancements

3. Make sure your options are set to optimize interlaced not progressive

4. Turn down the sharpness a lot. The picture coming down from the sat has very high sharpness, it is probably the sharp edges on the pixel blocks that is most noticeable. You get a good picture with sharpness turned down because you are getting a signal with very little degradation, you do not need to compensate for the countless splitters the cable company would use.
I got my 61" 4x3 HD Sony the beginning of June. Some of the Dish channels (especially Denver locals) looked really bad. Recently though, I notice some of the Dish channels look very close to HD or SD quality. The music channels, Discovery, National Geographic, TLC, TMC-W, Encore channels, at times look great. The Denver locals at times seem better. It is a tough call though, it seems to vary daily.
I agree with Darrellp, spend the money and get your set ISF calibrated, you will be much MUCH happier once its done.

I had my HD set for a few years now, I always thought I had a very good picture, I then had Gregg Lowen calibrate my set and was shocked at how good my set looked after he left.

$300 may sound like alot, but in the end it was VERY worth it!
What Dish receiver are you using and how do you have it connected??

If you have a 6000 model I would suggest connecting it up using both the s-video and component connections. The SD channels actually look a little bit better using s-video out.
Not to sound like a broken record, but I'd have to go along with the other and say have your TV ISF calibrated. Makes a world of difference. That said, DBS is best viewed on a 13" Funai TV in my garage. :D
For those of us in the non-high-end world, can you define ISF?

Make sure your sharpness is down all the way (that IMPROVES the picture), and possibly consider a video scaler which may help significantly (at a cost of around $3500) to improve the overall quality of the picture (though not to specifically reduce compression artifacts)
Well, our guest does not say which receiver he has, or where he lives but it seems evident that he does not have the 6000.

DBS PQ issues on "'digital" bigscreens have been hashed out many times before in this & other forums. But the main thing to consider is that type of display was designed for HDTV & DVD.

SD looks worse on these sets than on SD sets for a variety of reasons some of which can be addressed in the set-up & calibration (like with the suggestions above) and some of which can't be "fixed."

But the real answer is to upgrade to the type of STB for which the set was designed; i.e. the Model 6000. I'm sure he will be delighted with the HD performance and, IMHO, the SD doesn't look so bad upconverted to 1080i either. And anamorphic WS DVDs should also look great whether deinterlaced by a "progressive" DVD player or upconverted by his set.

1 - 20 of 30 Posts
Not open for further replies.