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BBC Pixellated Pictures - complain!

Discussion in 'Satellite TV, Sky TV & FreeSat' started by cybersoga, Jun 4, 2002.

  1. cybersoga

    cybersoga
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    The poor quality of all BBC channels at the moment is due to low bitrate transmissions on digital terrestrial TV, and because NTL use the same feed it's crap on cable too. If you think the quality is crap (which it is right now) then let the bbc know by visiting the following address:-

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/reception/email.shtml

    If enough people complain they will crank the bitrate back up again.
     
  2. Squirrel God

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  3. mandlebrot

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    I'm on NTL digital cable.

    I agree the visual quality has gone rubbish, people are also complaining who are getting the feed from 5ky so I guess we are all getting the same overly compressed feed. I have complained to the BBC using the above links and hope that more people complain also.
     
  4. billduff

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    Great idea. I have jist sent them my opinions.

    I have Telewest and the DTT signal, both were pants but the analog signal was excellent.

    Guess they have a long way to go before the government can sell of the rest of the spectrum.
     
  5. rob@rar.org.uk

    rob@rar.org.uk
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    I sent the following email to the BBC (info@bbc.co.uk) and the Departmet of Culture Media and Sport (digitaltelevision@culture.gov.uk)

    ***
    I have just been told by the BBC Information Line (08700 100 123) that the current problems with picture quality on terrestrial digital reception of BBC channels is due to the current weather situation. The TV picture I am receiving is so pixelated that it is almost unwatchable. Can I ask:

    1. If it is due to atmospheric pressure why is BBC1 is unaffected, but BBC2 and News24 are so poor to be almost unwatchable? Also, why is the BBC affected but not other broadcasters?

    2. If it is due to the current weather situation, why have I not experienced this poor picture quality before? Is there something unique about the weather pattern over the last three or four days?

    3. If the new digital broadcasting technology is so prone to degradation by weather patterns, why on earth has the BBC invested so much effort in such a fragile technology?

    Am I alone in doubting that the weather is the problem at the moment? I suspect that for whatever reason the BBC is using far more compression on non-BBC1 channels, allowing the picture quality to decline below acceptable levels.

    I have returned to watching analogue broadcasts, meaning I can no longer watch News24, BBC Choice or BBC4. This situation will do little to promote acceptance of digital TV in this country.
    ***

    Regards

    Rob
     
  6. Squirrel God

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    If it were the weather, then I would expect a high rate of uncorrected errors/sec to be evident (under signal information). Mine says zero however. Perhaps the BBC have used increased compression to reduce the bit rate to enable the signal to be more rugged during this 'freak weather period'? In other words, if the bit rate is lower, then *maybe* it is easier to correct errors in the signal using the error correction/detection techniques. Somehow, I doubt this is true though! To me, this wreaks of national rail's excuse of "leaves on the line" :p Of course, there is a chance that the person who gave you the original response didn't understand your complaint. :rolleyes:
     
  7. cybersoga

    cybersoga
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    Don't complain to the ITC, the BBC isn't regulated - complain to the BBC instead.
     
  8. mandlebrot

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    Cheers cybersoga, the more the merrier:)
     
  9. pointon

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    I give up. How exactly does the weather (what weather? Did I miss a hurricane or something?) affect underground digital cable programming?
     
  10. Squirrel God

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    Clearly it's to do with the activities of underground radioactive moles, but the BBC don't want us to know about them.

    Just watching "Murder" on BBC2 at the mo'. Picture quality is very good. :)
     
  11. MartinCo

    MartinCo
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    more likely the picture problems are related to the BBC showing all the World Cup Interactive stuff and lack of bandwidth.

    must be the equivalent of at least 2-3 extra channels.

    plus they used the same bandwidth for the chelsea flower show just before the world cup, and soon for Wimbledon.

    coincidence? no.
     
  12. Steve D Green

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    The World Cup channels are on a different multiplex, they're not the culprit.

    I was told they've been lowering the bitrates as a 'test' - originally it was going to be back to normal at the weekend, but I guess the complaints forced them to finish early.

    The consensus is that they are experimenting with a different method of transmission to improve the robustness of signal on DTT, but this reduces bandwidth from 24 to 18Mbit - so I guess they were trying to see if they could get away without using another multiplex.

    It's obvious to anyone that they can't - just a shame they couldn't have worked this out internally.

    - Steve
     
  13. cybersoga

    cybersoga
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    Just got this reply from the BBC:-

    "The BBC has recently been carrying out transmission tests on its DTT multiplex. As a result of this work there was, for a few days, a reduction in the maximum bit-rate available to our services. These tests began on Friday 31 May and finished on Wednesday 5 June."

    I have done more research into the subject and come to the following conclusion:-

    They have been running tests over the past couple of weeks that show that they can make the DTT signal more relyable by switching from 24mb/s to 18mb/s per multiplexer, but that reduces the picture quality because it reduces the bitrate for each channel - so they need to reduce the number of channels per multiplexer and use more multiplexers to make it work properly. It just so happens that the BBC have won the bid for ITV digital's multiplexer so they will have more to play with, so perhaps they will use it in this way to make the signal more relyable, or add more channels, or both.

    You can read the full report at
    http://www.dtg.org.uk/dtgactivities/published/dtt_modes_trial_report.pdf
     
  14. mandlebrot

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    They say the test finsihed on Wednesday 5 June yet I had a rubbish overly compressed picture today on BBC2 while weakest link was on.
     
  15. Squirrel God

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    Maybe it was a repeat ;) :D
     
  16. john87

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    Squirrel God, your humour cracks me up :rolleyes:

    :p
     

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