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Discussion Starter #1
I wasn't sure where exactly to post this...so mods feel free to move this to the correct place.

I'm also not interested in a debate over whether their cable/satellite compresses so it depends which transponder etc.

What I would like to know is this: if there was the same source...and compression etc was not brought into question...which would have the better picture quality...or would they be the same?

The reason I ask is this...I watched Fred Clause in HD on Bell and the PQ was outstanding...the bluray is far less stellar.

That's not to say the bluray for this movie is awful because it's not...it just doesn't seem as sharp or colorful...and I did a stop motion comparison.
 

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Blu-ray is High definition so I don't understand your subject.

By definition, every signal (be it satellite or Blu-ray or computer file) is compressed

Video quality depends on the bitrate and the compression scheme used. The transport mechanism is irrelevant.
 

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9.9 out of 10 times the BD should be the same or better (1080p vs ???)

What movie studio released that movie?
 

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Blu-ray movies are usually 1080/24p I believe. This can be converted into 1080/60i by 2:3 pulldown and converted back to 24p in your TV.

Assuming nothing else in between, no compression and that your TV can support 24p, they should be essentially the same.

If any of those conditions are not true, then your mileage may vary.

EDIT: I am assuming that by "high definition" you are referring to broadcast HD, since Blu-Ray is high definition.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I guess that's what I wanted to know...what does TMN or Movie Central use for their master...do they simply throw in a bluray when broadcasting a movie on cable or sat?

I thought maybe they had some special HD Master tape. (with better quality than we could have at home)

James...Warner Brothers released the film.
 

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Warner usually does a good job with transfers.

Blu-ray is a consumer format so it won't be used by any broadcaster.

I believe a few threads exist on this subject.
 

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Again you're confusing a lot of issues. Cable and Sat companies don't have masters. They receive a signal from the station, encode it and then rebroadcast it. As noted by James99, one is a consumer format, one is broadcast.

If your question is "Which has superior picture quality, a Blu-ray movie or a movie over cable/sat ?" then the answer, as James99 noted, is Blu-ray because it typically uses the same or superior video codec and has a much higher bitrate.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Actually my question is more about The Movie Network or Movie Centrals HD Master that they use for broadcasting...and whether it's as compressed as blu-ray.

It's really not all that important...I thought it would be a quick answer with someone saying that there was a much better HD Master tape with no compression...but to have one at home it would cost 20 grand.
 

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1. The Studios create the master tapes for Astral (TMN) and for Corus (MC) by telecining from film (if the original is film). These tapes are typically 1080i or 1080p

2. Astral then encode these tapes to their encoders. I believe the bitrate of these encoders is about 50 Mbps which can be sent to the provider.

3. The service provider receives the signal from Astral and then compresses the signal down to what they send to the consumer. The maximum bitrate they send to the consumer is 19.4 Mbps.

4. Although some channels on Rogers (and some other providers) are "uncompressed from OTA-type signals" (up to 19.4 mbps), many channels undergo (further) compression that sends a signal to the consumer with a lower bitrate.

5. In those instances the bitrate is lower, as follows:

Rogers uses variable bitrate compression where the have 3 channels per 39 Mbps QAM, so the bitrate of an individual channel could be anywhere from say 10-15 Mbps depending on what other channels are on that QAM - say 13 Mbps average.

Bell also uses variable bitrate, however, their transponders have about 30 Mpbs available and therefore the bitrate is usually lower - closer to 10 Mbps.

Astral Link: http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/showthread.php?p=925299#post925299

Rogers Bitrate Link: http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=104501 Note that not all channels are compressed on Rogers. The channel numbers in that thread are before the latest channel reallignment.

Blu-ray (or DVD) is a consumer-only format and is not used by broadcasters, providers. What you receive from TMN or MC via a service provider is typically about 1/2 to 1/3 the bitrate that is available on Blu-ray.

Typically when people see differences between their various devices/sources, it's because the inputs on the TV have not been equally optimized for the connected device. Contrast, Sharpness, etc may not be optimized for each connection/device. If you're only on one input through an AVR, it's still true because each device is slightly different.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Judging by what you're saying then...in most cases blu-ray should look better (much better bit rate)...which is what I originally figured...and was wondering why HD looked better in the original instance.

Must be the machine I played it on...unless it was a rare instance where nothing was on that transponder except the movie. (it was recorded in the middle of the night ages ago)
 

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Although this should NEVER happen with modern production techniques, a truly poor master plowed onto a Blu-Ray could happen...

This does raise optimization questions though. I wonder if the OP has seen truly stunning PQ from the BD player? If so, then the copy of the BD movie should be played at various places and see what happens. If the movie is truly horrid in PQ, I'd take a good long hard look at the BD disk and confirm it's authenticity. That just shouldn't happen to a properly licensed product produced through legal channels.

Cameron
 

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There may be other differences between BD, BDU and OTA signals. For example, BD can be 1920x1080p at 24fps (for film content), 1920x1080i at 60fps (for HDTV content) or one of several other HD formats. 1920x1080p at 60fps does not appear to be in the standard but I could be wrong. If necessary, the player or HDTV does the conversion to 1920x1080p at 60fps. OTA signals are converted to 1920x1080i at 60pfs before transmission. That may reduce the amount of information available at a particular bandwidth, for movie content in particular. It also may introduce interlace artifacts. IMHO, OTA HD signals that are compressed to 10mbps are HDTV in name only.

BTW, Blu-ray has a maximum bit rate of 48Mbps for audio plus video, more than enough to look sharper than most OTA HDTV signals, which are 19.2Mbps or less, and enough to make most Canadian BDU signals look pitiful.
 

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The reason I ask is this...I watched Fred Clause in HD on Bell and the PQ was outstanding...
Well, we happened to notice the same thing, for some reason Fred Claus really popped, especially the colour. I haven't seen it on BR, but considered picking it up,.. glad I didn't. Fortunately we recorded it.
I think I understand the bitrate argument, but regardless, it seems that some tranfers simply got better TLC in the process and come out better, whether Blue Ray, DVD or Satellite.

Ever notice how good the Blue-Ray trailers look on regular DVD?:confused:
 

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Well, we happened to notice the same thing, for some reason Fred Claus really popped, especially the colour.....
That makes it sound like the way TVs are set up in stores, to be bright and really pop the colours to better catch the consumer's eye.

Each input in a TV needs to be configured. If the BD input is connected to a different input than the HDTV signal, and it is configured differently than the HDTV input, the final image may be different.

Since BD and broadcast use different sources, I would wonder if different departments do the work. Could result in differernt quality output, if so....and if there is pressure to get a bunch of BD out for a specific selling season, might they may rush the BD process to meet a deadline?

I have had some BD that were no better than SD, so it is possible to create a BD that is almost crap.......
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Just so you know...I'm running an Oppo BDP-83 and a Bell 9242 through a Yamaha RX-V3900 going into a Pioneer Kuro TV that was ALL calibrated together by Michael TLV.

So the argument that the equipment is the issue doesn't hold water as I have never noticed any other Movies look that different.

Also like I had mentioned in a previous post, the Blu-ray doesn't look horrible...just not as good as the Bell-HD.

Honestly...the Bell-HD was reference quality...perhaps the best I've seen.
 

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As I mentioned earlier (post 9), if you're going through an AVR with two different devices, then unless those devices are identical (which they are not), then the optimization is either in favour of one device, or another, or a compromize, or you need to switch picture modes on the TV, which you don't mention doing. Granted, I have not found huge differences between most newer devices and have my own Rogers PVR and BDP-83 going through my AVR.

I suspect that in this case there is simply a huge difference between the particular BD and the "TV" programme (perhaps in colour saturation), since you say you have not seen huge differences in your other material.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Yup...it goes back to what I was originally thinking...sort of 57.

In that the Master for the HD movie was better than the Blu-ray.

I suspected that this was always the case...(like back in the day when TV stations had Digital recorders and we had VCR's)...but at least I've learned that it really shouldn't be if both are mastered properly.
 

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I and I suspect a few others here are not convinced by the claim that stations never use consumer DVDs and VHS consumer tapes. How come some of the films shown open with the same "<studio name> HOME VIDEO" logo that is found on the consumer discs/tapes themselves? Would this not imply that they are using the same copy we can buy at the local video store and not something designed for broadcast? Who would actually monitor this? Is there someone who is checking every program to make sure that the broadcasters don't do this? I kind of doubt it.
 

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Any broadcaster who did that would risk losing his licence. Do you have examples of channels and movies?
I can't name specific movies but one such channel is History Television in the 90's. I recorded a movie that I also owned on VHS and was surprised to see the "Home Video" slide at the start of the broadcast. It matched perfectly with my VHS tape which was why I remember it. I also have seen similar on A&E (BBC period dramas) and Showcase. Of course it could be that the TV broadcast and the VHS tape both came from the same master source but it does make me wonder if sometimes stations don't take the easy way and hope no one notices.
 
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