I've come to the conclusion...

GeneWildershair

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Feb 28, 2004
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That StarzHD, and HBOHD are the least compressed *premium movie* channels on VOOM. I find little to no pixelations on movies and programs on either of these channels. Tonight Hulk showed very little artifacts, and really held up great during the action scenes. ShowtimeHD, and CinemaxHD are the worst *IMO*. Spiderman, Charlies Angels, and other movies, and programs that were shown on these channels had obvious compression problems....(alot of artifacts/pixelation during fast moving scenes). EnocreHD also holds up pretty well, but not as good as Starz, and HBO. I haven't really given much time to tmchd, as they hardly ever show anything in HD, so I can't comment on that channel. I'm curious to see if anyone else would agree here?
 

squicken

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Mar 24, 2004
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The only premium I get is HBO, and it's generally OK. In fact, East is very good, while Pacific is sometimes frustrating. Where in the chain does the compression occur? Is it Voom's fault? I know you also have D*. Is your conclusion based on just Voom or also based on D*? I'm curious b/c the HD channels my cable company carries are so dark and compressed, that I've never been able to do a real A/B test.
 

andrzej

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Feb 18, 2004
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I think that the compression rate (at the Voom facility) is the same on all HD channels for pragmatic reasons. The differences that we are seeing are likely due to the differences in the source. Maybe Starz and HBO are providing Voom with less compressed signal to start with.
 

GeneWildershair

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Feb 28, 2004
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Sean Mota said:
Hulk was not a "True HD" transfer...

So is that why it didn't get all pixelated during fast motion scenes? The action held up great. Spiderman, (which was a true HD transfer) looked like crap during fast scenes.
 

GeneWildershair

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Feb 28, 2004
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BTW, my conclusion wasn't just based on a couple of movies, but thru out watching all these channels closely for the past few weeks, while watching many movies, special events and programs. And of course I could not compare D* with VOOM on many of these channels, only HBOHD was compared, and it's almost equal in the pq department. A little sharper with D*, but not by much. VOOM has improved in this area, and when it comes to compression on HBOHD, both D*, and VOOM are equal here. There is noticeable compression issues on the 2 premium movie channels I mentioned, (whether it be fault with VOOM, or source material I have no idea.) I have not included all of the west feeds with the premiums, because we already knew those had issues with artifacts/ pixelation. VOOM is still going thru a lot of bugs and issues with their equipment, and some channels, but I am also seeing improvements made. While some SD channels look terrible, with sparklies, and video noise, others have actually improved, and I find myself switching over to the D* box less and less now. I still see the occasional black outs with my DVI, but it is pretty rare. Micro stutters are still rampant, and very annoying, but I'm still hopeful that VOOM will take care of these. Bottom line... VOOM is on the right track, making improvements that are making me a happier subscriber every day.
 

soledade

Pub Member / Supporter
Mar 2, 2004
84
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San Diego
GeneWildershair said:
That StarzHD, and HBOHD are the least compressed *premium movie* channels on VOOM. I find little to no pixelations on movies and programs on either of these channels. Tonight Hulk showed very little artifacts, and really held up great during the action scenes. ShowtimeHD, and CinemaxHD are the worst *IMO*. Spiderman, Charlies Angels, and other movies, and programs that were shown on these channels had obvious compression problems....(alot of artifacts/pixelation during fast moving scenes). EnocreHD also holds up pretty well, but not as good as Starz, and HBO. I haven't really given much time to tmchd, as they hardly ever show anything in HD, so I can't comment on that channel. I'm curious to see if anyone else would agree here?

I agree with your observations 100%. This is also a long term trend, observed over many movies in my opinion.

I wonder if the source of these issues for these lower quality premiums is the feed from the network providers, or if VOOM uses different settings for these channels in the encoder?

Are SHOWTIME HD or CINEMAX HD available on D*? If yes, how do they compare to HBO HD and STARZ HD on D*?

If these channels all share the same quality on D* maybe this points to different settings across these channels on the VOOM encoder. If CINEMAX and SHOWTIME are poor on D* then maybe its the networks...
 

GeneWildershair

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Feb 28, 2004
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soledade said:
I agree with your observations 100%. This is also a long term trend, observed over many movies in my opinion.

I wonder if the source of these issues for these lower quality premiums is the feed from the network providers, or if VOOM uses different settings for these channels in the encoder?

Are SHOWTIME HD or CINEMAX HD available on D*? If yes, how do they compare to HBO HD and STARZ HD on D*?

If these channels all share the same quality on D* maybe this points to different settings across these channels on the VOOM encoder. If CINEMAX and SHOWTIME are poor on D* then maybe its the networks...

D* doesn't carry half the HD programming of VOOM, so no I cannot do a direct comparison on cinemax, and showtime, unfortunately or we would definitely have our answer. Like I said as far as compression goes on HBOHD, D*, and VOOM appear to be exactly the same. I'm leaning more towards it being encoded differently with each VOOM channel, as the west feeds of all the HD premiums are noticeably worse than the east channels. That's just my guess though.
 

vurbano

On Double Secret Probation
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Apr 1, 2004
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GeneWildershair said:
did you also notice how well it held up during heavy action? It was very hard to see any pixelation at all.
I didnt see any pixelation in fast scenes, it was very 720pish in that sense. If that wasnt a true HD transfer then we need more of whatever that was. But with better scripts and actors. It was strange that the helicopters didnt explode in the battle scenes, that might have stressed the pixelation issue more. LMAO
 

GeneWildershair

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Feb 28, 2004
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vurbano said:
I didnt see any pixelation in fast scenes, it was very 720pish in that sense. If that wasnt a true HD transfer then we need more of whatever that was. But with better scripts and actors. It was strange that the helicopters didnt explode in the battle scenes, that might have stressed the pixelation issue more. LMAO

yeah the only time I saw any pixelation was in a couple scenes where there were fire balls, but it still looked ok. And I agree, It looked pretty good to me.
 

eschu97611

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Mar 4, 2004
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GeneWildershair said:
yeah the only time I saw any pixelation was in a couple scenes where there were fire balls, but it still looked ok. And I agree, It looked pretty good to me.
Feel the love on Mother's Day you 2-how nice to see-LMAO
 

vurbano

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eschu97611 said:
Feel the love on Mother's Day you 2-how nice to see-LMAO
well Jay could talk about his microstuttering and that might start us fighting again. LMAO

I gotta go find that prediction I made about that. It was pretty funny.

lol here it is:

vurbano said:
a merger of voom and dish. It would be a good marriage.

And I predict that genewildershair will discover that his house lies above an ancient underground river bed that distorts subterreanean tremors to a specific harmonic frequency that is shaking the guns in his sony RPTV causing his microstuttering.
:D
 

GeneWildershair

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Feb 28, 2004
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vurbano said:
well Jay could talk about his microstuttering and that might start us fighting again. LMAO

:D

hey micro stuttering is real! More like dropped frames every now and then, but the image will make a quick jump when it happens. I really envy that you don't see them! Damn it don't get me started! ;)
 

Sean Mota

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Sep 8, 2003
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I agree with you guys. This movie looked pretty good. However, Starz-HD designated it as not "True HD" on their website. I kept looking for excuse to say it was not HD.
 

vurbano

On Double Secret Probation
Supporting Founder
Apr 1, 2004
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Newport News, VA
I guess we need to see it in true HD to see the difference then we can determine how good this one was. Maybe there was more detail we just were not expecting?
 

eschu97611

SatelliteGuys Pro
Mar 4, 2004
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L.A. CA
GeneWildershair said:
hey micro stuttering is real! More like dropped frames every now and then, but the image will make a quick jump when it happens. I really envy that you don't see them! Damn it don't get me started! ;)
Spoke too soon it looks like-lol
 

FunkyBoss

Pub Member / Supporter
Mar 23, 2004
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Chicagoland, IL
GeneWildershair said:
hey micro stuttering is real! More like dropped frames every now and then, but the image will make a quick jump when it happens. I really envy that you don't see them! Damn it don't get me started! ;)

Yeah, as much as I would like to jump on the bandwagon of making fun with Gene like others do, I too see the "micro-stutters".
 

GeneWildershair

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Feb 28, 2004
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FunkyBoss said:
Yeah, as much as I would like to jump on the bandwagon of making fun with Gene like others do, I too see the "micro-stutters".

others making fun? I guess vurbano is more than one person now eh? The way I see it that bandwagon you speak of, is more like one person aboard a short yellow bus with flat tires....hehe... yeah...you can't really make fun of a guy that's telling it like it is. I'm just the type that doesn't like to hold it in. In all fairness I give credit where credit is due. Besides, I spend hard earned money on VOOM, so I don't feel bad about reporting problems I see. You shouldn't either! ;)
 

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