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How much of the Sky HD channels is really HD?

mike7

Distinguished Member
I'm considering taking out a subscription to Sky for more HD content. However, looking at their schedules there it seems to me that not all Sky 1 HD programmes are actually HD at all. It is their 'flagship' channel so this is not what you would expect.

Most nights there is anything up to 2 hours of The Simpsons which as far as I have seen is not even in widescreen. Last night there was something called Project Runway, which also appeared as 4:3. I'm making an assumption here that neither of these are in HD. Not being a sports fan I want to be able to purchase a package that includes entertainment and movies that actually are HD and not mysteriously 'upscaled' at the transmission end. What is the true picture?
 

derek500

Well-known Member
I'm considering taking out a subscription to Sky for more HD content. However, looking at their schedules there it seems to me that not all Sky 1 HD programmes are actually HD at all. It is their 'flagship' channel so this is not what you would expect.

Most nights there is anything up to 2 hours of The Simpsons which as far as I have seen is not even in widescreen. Last night there was something called Project Runway, which also appeared as 4:3. I'm making an assumption here that neither of these are in HD. Not being a sports fan I want to be able to purchase a package that includes entertainment and movies that actually are HD and not mysteriously 'upscaled' at the transmission end. What is the true picture?

The majority of the movies on the nine HD movie channels are in HD.

Sky1 HD is a simulcast of Sky1, so flagship or not one wouldn't expect to see a majority HD schedule. The Simpsons is a mainstay of Sky1 so whether it's SD/HD or 16:9/4:3 is neither here nor there. New Simpsons in February will be in HD.

Of course Sky1 themselves make 99% of their own programmes in HD and the majority of new US imports are in HD too.

Apart from Sky Arts HD, Sky Real Lives HD, Eurosport HD, MTV HD and Sky's HD sports channels the rest are 100% HD.
 

Broadz

Distinguished Member
On Sky One HD - if the programme being transmitted is available in high definition, you can be fairly confident that Sky will have purchased the HD master of it for transmission. If it isn't available in HD (i.e. The Simpsons), you'll get an upscaled version of it. You can work out for yourself what percentage of one day on Sky One HD by selecting each programme in turn, pressing (i) and seeing whether it has a HD indicator. If it has, it's in HD.
 

mkcurtis

Active Member
Channel 4 is also a bit like Sky One. It is simulcast but not everything on Channel 4 HD is in HD. The EPG as stated in the thread will show HD in the bar when you press "i" on the remote. Both Sky and Channel 4 change the on screen channel logo to either 4HD or Sky One HD if the program is also HD.

So do not expect 24*7 HD on all the HD channels. If you do subscribe it will be good to get into a habit of watching the HD channel just in case something is in HD and you find out later that you have missed it. So watch channel 140 and not 104 for example for Channel 4
 

Jez1

Active Member
A better approach imo is to think in terms of whether the things you want to watch are in HD. I don't care overmuch if Sky broadcast things that I don't particularly want to watch in SD - my view is that for my tenner a month I want the things I like best in HD. On Sky One that's 24, Battlestar Galactica and Lost, all of which I believe will be broadcast in HD.

I want as many movies as possible in HD, to keep the girlfriend happy. And I want my favourite live sports (rugby, football, cricket (at least England matches) and tennis) in HD. As long as I get those I consider the HD fee worthwhile. So far it looks ok. Not too fussed about the Simpsons though - I can't really see overmuch benefit to me in watching a cartoon in HD (maybe on some of the visually cleverer, more detailed animations, but not the Simpsons, where the dialogue is so much more important than the visuals).

In other words, when deciding whether to spend that installation fee and monthly charge, it's more important to think about what you'd watch than just what's available.
 

Bachstrad

Well-known Member
Channel 4 is also a bit like Sky One. It is simulcast but not everything on Channel 4 HD is in HD. The EPG as stated in the thread will show HD in the bar when you press "i" on the remote. Both Sky and Channel 4 change the on screen channel logo to either 4HD or Sky One HD if the program is also HD.

So do not expect 24*7 HD on all the HD channels. If you do subscribe it will be good to get into a habit of watching the HD channel just in case something is in HD and you find out later that you have missed it. So watch channel 140 and not 104 for example for Channel 4

Short of beating SWMBO around the head with the remote, any ideas on how to get her to take this on board when unsupervised? :rotfl:

HD programs can be few and far between on CH4 HD as it is, but the SD content looks so much better on 140 than 104 doesn't it? I've even come back from business trips to find that she's recorded an HD film in SD from 104! :eek:

ATB

Max
 

Sephiroth0000

Active Member
When Sky1 do a program in HD it looks amazing. But with regards to The Simpsons me and the kids just watch it on the Sky1 SD for the widescreen. I never knew that HD Simpsons were due in Feburary...roll on Feb:rotfl:
 

Sephiroth0000

Active Member
This is really important. Even if the programme isn't HD, the much higher bitrate on the HD channel improves the picture a lot.

I agree with watching SD content on Channel4 HD is better then standard Channel4 but for some reason The Simpsons look worst on Sky1 HD. Apart from that SkyHD's lineup is pukka!
 

wbabbington

Well-known Member
Short of beating SWMBO around the head with the remote, any ideas on how to get her to take this on board when unsupervised? :rotfl:

You could put a parental lock on 104, forcing her to watch 140. Of course that may not go down to well with SWMBO!
 

Broadz

Distinguished Member
But with regards to The Simpsons me and the kids just watch it on the Sky1 SD for the widescreen.

But The Simpsons isn't in widescreen. So you select the SD channel then watch that wrongly stretched out into fattyvision, to distort the correct aspect ratio on purpose?

And why exactly do you do that?
 

Sephiroth0000

Active Member
But The Simpsons isn't in widescreen. So you select the SD channel then watch that wrongly stretched out into fattyvision, to distort the correct aspect ratio on purpose?

And why exactly do you do that?

Beacuse the kids want the whole screen and not half if it lol. I take it you do not have children lol?
 

Nivek TT

Distinguished Member
Not too fussed about the Simpsons though - I can't really see overmuch benefit to me in watching a cartoon in HD (maybe on some of the visually cleverer, more detailed animations, but not the Simpsons, where the dialogue is so much more important than the visuals).


It can make a difference IMO. Even South Park in HD (via my Xbox 360) is an obvious improvement! The lines are so clear and the colours are more vivid and completely uniform rather than an mpeggy mess. The recent HD Futuramas looked wonderful!

New Simpsons in February will be in HD.

New Simpsons in HD... oooh, but will it be widescreen..? I've always felt there is something charming about the SD, 4:3, hand-drawn look of Simpsons (movie aside). You wouldn't want the Futurama style 3d animations in your Simpsons.

I always watch Simpsons via Sky 1 HD. I hate stretch-o-vision :mad:
 

Sephiroth0000

Active Member
Makes a change, it's usually the uninitiated adults who bought the TV that prefer 'stretchyvision' so a st to 'get their moneys worth'.

No I like watching TV as its supposed to be :) But kids will be kids lol. Most of the time when I watch SkyHD channels I always make sure to have the TV on exact scan to get the best viewing and I can honestly say I still think my TV is pukka :D
 

danvitale

Active Member
But The Simpsons isn't in widescreen. So you select the SD channel then watch that wrongly stretched out into fattyvision, to distort the correct aspect ratio on purpose?

And why exactly do you do that?

I watched Sky1hd the other day and it had the simpsons upscaled but they had put black bars to keep it "4:3". It was MUCH better.
 

logiciel

Moderator

Sephiroth0000

Active Member

Don't get me wrong when I first got it out of the box I thought the picture could of been alot better. Putting in Runtime's settings have been a great help. I have not had it fully calibrated yet but I will in another year or 2 so it looks like new again :D
 

Bachstrad

Well-known Member
You have a Harmony - just program the button with the channel 4 logo with 140 instead of 104?

Funnily enough I did that as soon as CH4 HD started to broadcast. ;)

I'm having trouble getting the Harmony software to delete 104 from the Sky EPG, the place she usually selects her viewing choice from. :D

ATB

Max
 

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