Fibe TV Picture Quality Issues - Page 5 - Canadian TV, Computing and Home Theatre Forums

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post #61 of 101 (permalink) Old 2016-07-21, 07:23 AM
 
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I understand that 57 but after being a hardware tech for 20 years I saw a few strange cases that took "off the wall" thinking and also learned that sometimes (users) aren't as sure of the facts as they believed.
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post #62 of 101 (permalink) Old 2016-07-21, 04:00 PM
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I had Cogeco installed today and the picture looks much better at first glance. I'll try and catch some sports/racing later on today to get some comparison photos.
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post #63 of 101 (permalink) Old 2016-07-21, 04:44 PM
 
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I am at a loss to explain why Cogeco would be better? This is indeed a confusing situation.

I have had Rogers Cable, Bell Satellite, and Bell Fibe. I own a 70" Sharp 1080P HDTV and a 52" Sharp 1080P HDTV. I would challenge anyone to see a difference in any of these three provider situations. They are all excellent.

I have Fibe TV now and it's as clear as a bell (pardon the pun).

How is it that TylerMrK sees crap, and then changes to Cogeco and is satisfied.

Does anyone have even a plausible explanation?
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post #64 of 101 (permalink) Old 2016-07-22, 11:40 AM
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It's hard to show the difference without a back-to-back comparison of some sort of content, but here is some soccer (the Cogeco pausing seems to be less good than the Bell system somehow, but the picture quality itself is better)


Imgur: The most awesome images on the Internet

I need to adjust the picture a bit, things look pretty washed out, but I can actually make out freckles and such on people's faces now, or textures on clothing/furniture.
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post #65 of 101 (permalink) Old 2016-07-22, 04:30 PM
 
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I don't see how this is a relevant comparison to the original photos. Everything is totally different!

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post #66 of 101 (permalink) Old 2016-07-22, 11:05 PM
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Yes, I'm aware, I'm going to keep an eye on the schedule for a MotoGP/WSBK race for comparison. My personal assessment is that it's drastically better, I'm just looking to get some photos to prove it.

Nobody I have talked to understands why Bell wasn't better (I talked to some people at Bell about it after having it disconnected and they said that they should have done more to figure it out). I may try again when 4K becomes more common and I get a 4K TV.
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post #67 of 101 (permalink) Old 2016-07-22, 11:52 PM
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No MotoGP until August 14. No SBK until September 17. It's possible there are reruns but I didn't see any for the next week on beIN.

I could see the difference though in your soccer pictures between post 34 and post 6. You can usually avoid the Moiré effect in your pictures by holding the camera at a slightly different distance - a bit closer or farther from the screen.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moir%C3%A9_pattern
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post #68 of 101 (permalink) Old 2016-07-23, 12:09 PM
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Good tip, I got some better shots that isn't a direct comparison with Bell, but should show something. The F1 races I was able to download before were comparable quality to the official MotoGP feed and better than what I was getting with Bell.

This is a shot of it: Imgur: The most awesome images on the Internet

This is with Cogeco now: Imgur: The most awesome images on the Internet (Shows Q1 in progress, if you're really worried about minor spoilers)

There are big improvements to the clarity of the text and on the borders of the timing.

I think there is something weird going on with the Gigabit line I have with Bell, which may have messed the TV up a bit. I've had it cut out a few times over the past few days, and for the past day I was only able to get ~6mbps down/~1mbps up/400+ms ping. I called in and they claimed they didn't change anything....but it suddenly went up to 400+down/100+up. They got mad when I said I doubted they didn't change anything. They were very evasive when I asked what was done or what they were going to do (they said they were going to change some configs maybe).
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post #69 of 101 (permalink) Old 2016-07-23, 12:39 PM
 
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Probably at the CO someone forgot to select the proper port to accommodate for the Fibe TV requirement.

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post #70 of 101 (permalink) Old 2016-07-26, 07:26 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elyk View Post
I am at a loss to explain why Cogeco would be better? This is indeed a confusing situation.

I have had Rogers Cable, Bell Satellite, and Bell Fibe. I own a 70" Sharp 1080P HDTV and a 52" Sharp 1080P HDTV. I would challenge anyone to see a difference in any of these three provider situations. They are all excellent.

I have Fibe TV now and it's as clear as a bell (pardon the pun).

How is it that TylerMrK sees crap, and then changes to Cogeco and is satisfied.

Does anyone have even a plausible explanation?
There could be several reasons for this. The first one that jumps to my mind is that the source that Bell is obtaining the feed from simply isn't as good as Rogers (or Cogeco, who is probably just obtaining the first-gen signal directly from Rogers). There could also be issues with the individual line that is reducing bitrate, but those issues are few and far between on FTTH installs. It could also be that fine detail is being lost during the conversion from a (for example) 1080i MPEG2 source into 720p MPEG4 AVC, as they aren't dedicating the same processing resources to this channel as they may be to something like Sportsnet for whatever reasons Bell deems themselves appropriate.

In my own personal experience I've found that Bell can be a *lot* better than Cogeco, depending on what you're looking for at any particular time. A still or slow image on Cogeco can look better because it's higher resolution and effectively becomes 1080p as each interlaced frame is processed into a single image by the TV, but fast motion can be a lot worse because detail gets lost by the interlaced signaling as well as MPEG2 macroblocking that isn't an issue with the compression method Fibe TV uses. Motion handling on Bell TV in my experience is an order of magnitude better than Cogeco, but this is something that you wouldn't be able to accurately represent with a still image.

If still images are important or you watch a lot of slow-moving content like what you see on a channel like Love Nature, I suppose Cogeco might be more to your liking. I have been a subscriber of three services - Cogeco, Shaw Direct and Fibe TV. My own experience is that you'll notice a huge difference in favour of Fibe TV when you actually sit down and watch a fast-moving sport like a hockey game rather than looking for details when the image is still. In contrast, I found baseball on Shaw Direct to be better than Bell. My own experience is that macroblocking on Cogeco can be pretty freaking terrible sometimes, and if your TV doesn't have any sort of digital noise filter the macroblocking can be so bad that it can almost make some content unwatchable. Shaw Direct's MPEG2 channels also exhibit quite a bit of macroblocking, but their MPEG4 channels in my experience were excellent despite being a lower bitrate than Fibe TV.

In my opinion, whether the "softer" image of Fibe TV is actually worse than any other provider is a matter of personal opinion and the specific content you're watching. I have a cheap no-name 49" and a 60" Samsung H6350 (among other smaller ones) and aside from no macroblocking (which has a fantastic benefit for the cheap 49" television as it has no digital noise reduction worth mentioning) I haven't noticed anything so drastic caused by the lower resolution to make me ever want to switch back to Shaw, especially since a lot of US network content is already only 720p at source to begin with.
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post #71 of 101 (permalink) Old 2016-07-26, 07:36 PM
 
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Originally Posted by TylerMrK View Post
Good tip, I got some better shots that isn't a direct comparison with Bell, but should show something. The F1 races I was able to download before were comparable quality to the official MotoGP feed and better than what I was getting with Bell.

This is a shot of it: Imgur: The most awesome images on the Internet

This is with Cogeco now: Imgur: The most awesome images on the Internet (Shows Q1 in progress, if you're really worried about minor spoilers)

There are big improvements to the clarity of the text and on the borders of the timing.
This difference is probably explained by the resolution, in addition to whatever difference in feed or processing that Bell is doing compared to Rogers/Cogeco. It could be worse, I suppose.

But honestly - do you really notice *that* big of a difference when you're actually watching the content from your chair 6+ feet away? So big that you switched? I would think that the better motion handling of Fibe TV - meaning a clearer image of objects as they move quickly on the screen - would be more important when watching an F1 race than slightly fuzzier borders around the leaderboard as compared to Cogeco? That's at least my own perception of this issue, anyway. The first thing I noticed when I saw Fibe TV for the first time was just how much more clear hockey players, the ice and the boards appeared during a game with the camera panning back and forth compared to Cogeco and Shaw.
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post #72 of 101 (permalink) Old 2016-07-27, 03:26 AM
 
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I honestly can't wrap my head around why this is happening

I'd take Bell Fibe TV's 6.5Mbps H264 over Cogeco's ~12Mbps (not sure) MPEG2 any day. When I switched from Shaw TV to Telus TV in 2013, I immediately thought everything looked soft and compressed. Few days later, I realized the "softer" picture looks better, free of MPEG2 macroblocking or visible compression artifacts. Same experience on my Sony 720p KDL40S3000, and my LG 1080p 42LN5300. H264 IPTV looks fantastic.

Is Bell Fibe TV sourcing from Bell Satellite 720p feeds? The macroblocking in post #6 looks like MPEG2 compression. I thought most BDUs used RAW fibre feeds now. I know BeIn Sports definitely wouldn't use a fibre feed, it looked pretty compressed when I saw the preview on Telus Optik TV. However OP said it exists across different channels like TSN and HGTV.

When OP said "changing colour/picture modes on the TV", did you turn off all the additional enhancement settings? Some TVs have unnecessary enhancements (such as mpeg noise reduction) that only degrade the video quality and cause additional artifacts. Maybe the Sony TV has a poor upscaler? Gigabit line troubles definitely won't cause troubles like this either.

This is definitely a mystery. If Bell Fibe TV's picture quality actually was this bad, then the people at Digital Home Forums would've noticed and posted about it.
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post #73 of 101 (permalink) Old 2016-07-27, 06:18 AM
 
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When OP said "changing colour/picture modes on the TV", did you turn off all the additional enhancement settings? Some TVs have unnecessary enhancements (such as mpeg noise reduction) that only degrade the video quality and cause additional artifacts. .
Which was one reason I suggested a factory reset on the TV...
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post #74 of 101 (permalink) Old 2016-07-27, 06:32 AM
 
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Which was one reason I suggested a factory reset on the TV...
Actually OP reproduced the same result on a different monitor. Weird.
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post #75 of 101 (permalink) Old 2016-07-27, 08:36 PM
 
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Originally Posted by tablo View Post
Is Bell Fibe TV sourcing from Bell Satellite 720p feeds? The macroblocking in post #6 looks like MPEG2 compression. I thought most BDUs used RAW fibre feeds now. I know BeIn Sports definitely wouldn't use a fibre feed, it looked pretty compressed when I saw the preview on Telus Optik TV. However OP said it exists across different channels like TSN and HGTV.
There are so many variables when it comes to source feeds - and even feeds that specific broadcasters use before passing their own feed off to a BDU - that it would be impossible to know for sure in every specific circumstance. It is entirely possible that the source feed Bell is receiving for beIN is compressed using MPEG2 before they convert it to MPEG4 (I think it uses a version of WMV rather than H264, but don't quote me on that). This would be an advantage to cable, as - at worst - they only need to reduce the bitrate to fit into their QAM map without having to further transcode it into an entirely different compression format like Bell does.

However, I doubt that Fibe TV uses source material from Bell satellite TV. If anything, I suspect it would be the other way around - far cheaper for Bell to obtain content to one single headend via fibre and (if necessary) first-gen satellite or microwave and then use their own multicast IP network for broadcast distribution to each office for Fibe TV, rather than duplicating the entire process by using satellite. Many of the channels carried by Fibe TV - including the Buffalo affiliates - aren't even carried on Bell TV at all, either. And Bell TV channels are at much lower bitrates than Fibe TV due to satellite capacity limitations.

It has been my experience that most people have a better overall viewer experience without any MPEG2 macroblocking despite Fibe TV's resolution being 720p, than they do 1080i cable while being subject to various levels of macroblocking depending on the bitrate of the specific channel that in some circumstances can be exceptionally terrible. The only thing I have found comparable - and sometimes even better - were Shaw Direct's 1080i H264 channels. Their MPEG2 channels (of which the majority of the cable sports networks are) however suffered from macroblock hell the same as cable, which sadly wasn't always the case.

Of course beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but even I have a hard time believing that anyone could find the picture quality of cable "better" within the context of the discussion we're having here about sports content. I find Fibe TV particularly excels with this kind of content compared to cable for all the reasons I mentioned earlier, so long as you take in the overall picture in real time rather than picking apart a paused still image.
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