Set Top Box Picture

RON

Standard Member
Does any one get pixelation on their set top box pictures the best way to describe it is little squares that you would see if you blow up a jpeg picture on your computer.they are usualy around eyes mouths and letters of words.
If you have this do you know what causes it or is it normal or how to overcome it .
I do have a large telly dont know weather this might just be macking it more visible.
 
S

Squirrel God

Guest
It's normal to a certain degree although I can't say it's really noticeable all the time - some channels are better/worse than others and some platforms are better/worse than others. It's because of there only being a limited amount of bandwidth available for each channel. If you have a large screen set you will notice it more. However, from what you describe (with regards to on-screen text etc) it might be worth fiddling with the settings. Do you have a 100Hz set by any chance? If so, try turning off some of the 100Hz processing features, e.g. PixelPlus if you have a Philips, DRC if you have a Sony, etc. Also turn off noise reduction.
 

atmoscinema

Active Member
Yes,I'm afraid it's par for the course.

Freeview has more limited bandwidth than Cable or Sky,but this only really means you'll see less channels,not more pixellation.

I think you'll find it's not down to bandwidth space with cable or even Sky.It's the source bit-rate that is sent out by the individual channel providers.After all,the channel providers are not going to have higher bit-rates for one platform and different encoders,hence giving bias to that platform,than all the others.
 
D

Duncan Craig

Guest
You will notice more blockyness on images with lots of detail, and movement.

Plus, compression systems have more trouble when pictures are grainy and noisy, as they have extra detail (and movement, if you think about it).

So nicely processed pop videos shot on film suffer less, ENG news footage which has been converted through loads of different formats and news agencies, shot on a knackered old betacam camcorder, look terrible when compressed.

Also, fades to blacks sometimes look bad.

I guess the only way this will be improved is with better aquisition quality, which won't happen, or better signal processing and compression.
 
P

Paul G

Guest
Originally posted by RON
If you have this do you know what causes it or is it normal or how to overcome it .

If your tv has RGB input then you can try using this option. It will disguise the blockiness to a degree. I personally don't use RGB myself as the RGB brightness is higher than my analogue pic brightness on my set. :)
 
J

jim.rae

Guest
If you have RGB in - presumably from a digital source, why would you want to watch analogue?

Surely digital RGB is miles better in terms of colour purity and lack of picture noise?

The only reason I keep analogue going is for Ceefax and Teletext, which are still limited on digital...
 
P

Paul G

Guest
Originally posted by jim.rae
If you have RGB in - presumably from a digital source, why would you want to watch analogue?


Because I can watch one prog whilst taping another prog. Also I prefer the analogue picture because it has no blockyness.
 

Kevo

Well-known Member
Originally posted by jim.rae
If you have RGB in - presumably from a digital source, why would you want to watch analogue?

Surely digital RGB is miles better in terms of colour purity and lack of picture noise?

Don't you believe it!

A good, strong analog TV signal will always be better than a digital one.
 

Starburst

Distinguished Member
Originally posted by Kevo
Don't you believe it!

A good, strong analog TV signal will always be better than a digital one.

It certainly doesn't help that their are standards for analogue broadcasting and none for digital but would you maintain youe view that "analogue will always be better" if all digital broadcasts matched the picture quality of a good DVD?
 
S

Squirrel God

Guest
Originally posted by Kevo
A good, strong analog TV signal will always be better than a digital one.
Remove the word "TV" from that sentence and I'll agree with you ;)
 

RON

Standard Member
The picture on tmf is superb today im sure it wasnt that good yesterday a sky chap said the bbc were going to bost the signal
 
S

sifowler

Guest
Do I need an aerial upgrade ?

Just bought a Grundig STB after checking my postcode for reception capability. I was aware of the fact I might need an aerial upgrade but I tried setting the box up anyway. I was delighted when it auto-found all available channels. Unfortunately when I started to watch, some of the channels pixelated really badly and some of them broke up completely. Worse offenders were Five (no great loss!), ITV News and CBeebies.

Does this mean my transmitter (Emley Moor in Yorkshire) is sending out a poor signal or does it point to an aerial upgrade ?

Any help would be great, cheers.
 

RON

Standard Member
argos do an aerial 52 element high gain wide band for £36 i am hopping to give this a try and see if it inproves the pictures any more .I also need a wide band aerial as we are on the isle of wight transmitter (redbridge) which transmits ITYV ITV2 C4 on wide band so cant get them at momentwith normal aerial,.It is a bit anoying cos hanington is only over the hill but it is a hill.

Try the argos aerial at least you can take it back also i have seen aerials up to 104 elements for weak signals.
 

Kevo

Well-known Member
Originally posted by Starburst
It certainly doesn't help that their are standards for analogue broadcasting and none for digital but would you maintain youe view that "analogue will always be better" if all digital broadcasts matched the picture quality of a good DVD?

Actually, there are. I received a letter from the ITC a while back (i'll try and dig it out) and it stated that there were quality criteria that had to be met. It's much higher for studio recordings than it is for OBs.

Obviously they are not being adhered to.

No, good DVD is far superior to analog TV, but I'll doubt we'll ever seen DTV match it.
 

Kevo

Well-known Member
Originally posted by Squirrel God
Remove the word "TV" from that sentence and I'll agree with you ;)

Absolutley.

I do miss my turntable and old vinyl records.

CD just never came close in terms of sound quality.
 
S

Squirrel God

Guest
Originally posted by sifowler
Do I need an aerial upgrade ?
It might just be your cabling and/or some interference in the surrounding area (nearby buildings). Check the signal strength on the offending channels and the bit error rate and uncorrected errors per sec. That's a good place to start deducing.
 
S

Squirrel God

Guest
Originally posted by Kevo
Absolutley.

I do miss my turntable and old vinyl records.

CD just never came close in terms of sound quality.
Well, digital never can can it. At the end of the day, digital is always an approximation of an original analogue signal. With an infinite sample rate, the two would converge in theory. Get up to the Nyquist rate and there should be no artefacts, but lots of people can still tell the difference - I wonder how much of that is down to the reproducing equipment though.
 

Starburst

Distinguished Member
Originally posted by Kevo
Actually, there are. I received a letter from the ITC a while back (i'll try and dig it out) and it stated that there were quality criteria that had to be met.

Obviously they are not being adhered to.

No, good DVD is far superior to analog TV, but I'll doubt we'll ever seen DTV match it.


That will make an interesting read and as you've said if it does set down any specs for a digital TV service (DTT,Cable or Sat) then it is either sets very low standards or every digital providor ignores it or operates outside it's remit.

Perhaps Criterion mpegII encoding on DVD's should set the benchmark for domestic non High Definition digital TV services in the UK.
 

RON

Standard Member
would satelite cable be better than normal tv aerial cable .

does any one know how you find out the signal strength ofmthe channels on a nokia media master ive seen posts saying 60% 90% how do you get this as it would help to deside which aerial.
 
S

sifowler

Guest
Originally posted by Squirrel God
It might just be your cabling and/or some interference in the surrounding area (nearby buildings). Check the signal strength on the offending channels and the bit error rate and uncorrected errors per sec. That's a good place to start deducing.

I seem to remember that the bit error rate was dropping into the red (?) quite a bit but the signal strength seemed ok !?

At work at the moment so obviously can't be sure on this.
 
S

Squirrel God

Guest
Originally posted by sifowler
I seem to remember that the bit error rate was dropping into the red (?) quite a bit but the signal strength seemed ok !?

At work at the moment so obviously can't be sure on this.
If that's the case, then I would personally have a go at the replacing the cabling first with good quality digital-ready coax. It might not cure the problem, but it's worth a shot before whacking out the big bucks for an aerial (which also might not work). You might also want to try running it off an internal aerial (one that can accommodate the digital channels, Argos sell one) - if that works then that would lend even more weight to the cabling theory.
 
S

sifowler

Guest
Originally posted by Squirrel God
If that's the case, then I would personally have a go at the replacing the cabling first with good quality digital-ready coax. It might not cure the problem, but it's worth a shot before whacking out the big bucks for an aerial (which also might not work). You might also want to try running it off an internal aerial (one that can accommodate the digital channels, Argos sell one) - if that works then that would lend even more weight to the cabling theory.

Thing is, I moved into my house when it was new, about 19 months ago, and had new aerial/cable fitted then - although thats not to say they used decent cable of course. Another thing - the signal is split to 2 rooms, could that make a difference ?
 
S

Squirrel God

Guest
Originally posted by sifowler
Another thing - the signal is split to 2 rooms, could that make a difference ?
Yes!! Also, you might not need to rewire the house! Try just changing the cable that runs from the digibox to the aerial outlet in the wall. I just use a JVC digital-ready cable with gold plated connectors - cost about £4 or £5. Works like a dream and I'm running it off the FM socket :)
 
S

sifowler

Guest
Originally posted by Squirrel God
Yes!! Also, you might not need to rewire the house! Try just changing the cable that runs from the digibox to the aerial outlet in the wall. I just use a JVC digital-ready cable with gold plated connectors - cost about £4 or £5. Works like a dream and I'm running it off the FM socket :)

I tried a different aerial cable into the STB and it worked a treat !!
 

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