SKY HD vs Blu-Ray

Eyewhy

Active Member
Depends on the bit-rate the HD channel is using. Generally, most Blu Ray films looks better than they look if shown on Sky Movies HD for example. Sky HD is still considerably better than SD tho.
 
It depends on one thing, the source. Some movies just arent that great quality and as such Sky HD will look just as good as BR, but BR does usually look better. Slightly clearer, better colour, better in busy scenes (less artifacting). The difference is less on HDTVs that are not native 1920x1080 though, and i would guess most of use dont have natively 1080P TVs.
 

bobcar

Novice Member
Blu-rays win handsdown specially for movies due to bandwith.
Although it does depend upon the content films are usually much less demanding on bandwidth than sport. Football would benefit greatly from 1080p50 whereas for films there is no point.
 

NicolasB

Distinguished Member
Blu-rays win handsdown specially for movies due to bandwith.
While Sky HD certainly has a lot less bandwidth to play with than BluRay, this actually has relatively little impact on image quality. (In fact, some early BluRay releases are actually MPEG2 rather than MPEG4, which use far more bandwidth for no image benefit at all!). The main difference between Sky HD and BluRay is that there's no equivalent of 1080p/24 output for films. If your TV system is capable of correctly deinterlacing 1080i/50 to 1080p/25 then this makes no difference (except for the fact that the films run slightly faster on Sky). But relatively few televisions can actually do this properly and, when they get it wrong, the picture loses vertical resolution as a result.
 

Starburst

Novice Member
Given the same master then there is little difference between the two as it has to be said when you see BD running at 40mbps it's pretty much overkill even if you have a 100" projector. An extreme example but it's been shown the difference between a HD DVD and a Blu-ray using the same master with BD running at a higher bitrate ended up being a few pixels at 200% mag on a single frame, irrelevant for normal viewing:)

As you lower the bitrates then obviously the impact increases but as we've seen with Cars and Ghost Rider a good master makes SKY HD look incredible where as a poor master used for both formats will look as bad.
The recent Trek movies in HD were a huge let down but put the same masters on Blu-ray and no amount of bitrate will make them look any better.

The bottom line if you want the best across the board then it has to be Blu-ray (video and audio) but there is no denying the HD catalogue for broadcast HD eclipses Blu-ray and will continue to do so for a good few years.
 

sparkymarky

Active Member
a bit simpler answer this one, i don't feel like i'm missing out on anything by watching by watching a movie on skyhd than if i bought the bluray.
i had stopped watching movies wen i only had sky+ sd becuase i felt like i was missing out on the picture quality and would rather buy a bluray.
but now that i have hd i'm watching films again so for me there is hardly a quality difference at all. :thumbsup:
 

Starburst

Novice Member
Blu-Ray discs don't suffer from lip sync issues ;)


Assuming the TV and Amp the player is connected too are working together correctly otherwise lip-sync as a by product of longer video processing compared to audio is just a likely as on broadcast HD:)

Of course a HDMI 1.3 amp, player and TV should make all that a thing of the past.

Feel free to slap me, I know it was a little humour on your part but I couldn't stop myself:D
 
Well my HTPC has a BR drive and uses the same sound system and HDTV as the Sky HD box, but ive never had any sound sinc issue with it. It only ever happens with the HD box.
 

Starburst

Novice Member
Well my HTPC has a BR drive and uses the same sound system and HDTV as the Sky HD box, but ive never had any sound sinc issue with it. It only ever happens with the HD box.



Good for you but doesn't negate my point:)

I wasn't saying BD has lip-sync issues, I was saying it is as liable to that problem as anyother source given the most common sync errors are audio ahead of video caused by delay in video processing compared to audio processing.
 

xPositor

Novice Member
The point about lip-sync issues with SkyHD is that the audio is already delayed, and consequently no adjustment of optical delay time will fix it. This doesn't happen with BD.

The actual reason I'm posting however is that of course Sky only support DD5.1, and not any of the HD audio formats which you can hopefully find on BD.

Whether the difference is discernible to the average ear-lobe or not would no doubt be subject to the same arguments as to whether a good transfer being broadcast via SkyHD is as good as its BD equivalent...
 

Starburst

Novice Member
Well ive never seen it on any system but one with Sky HD.

Nearly the same, never seen it (well apart from the odd programme which was probably a broadcast issue) and don't have it on SKY HD, mind you Freesat users are reporting sync issues as well, it's the in thing atm:)

In the early days of DVD a number of Pioneer DVD players had issues with lip-sync to perhaps a far greater degree than SKY HD does now. A lot of work has been done to reduce the video processing delay in flat panels over the years and many TV's have inbuilt compensation on AV inputs to maintain sync based on source (if it's synced up going in it's still sync going out) and Felston have done quite well sell small boxes which sat between a source and amp that can delay digital audio.
Modern technology using HDMI 1.3 is potentially the ultimate solution for those that continue to have this issue and it has to be said that with both

I never had a sync issue using SKY+ on my LCD or the Plasma and only experienced by first sync issue with a retail product on the first HD movie I watched on SKYHD, the 60ms delay fixed that and has never needed changing.

Now the most common source of dodgy lip-sync content is poorly captured avi caps from US programming:)
 

Starburst

Novice Member
The point about lip-sync issues with SkyHD is that the audio is already delayed, and consequently no adjustment of optical delay time will fix it. This doesn't happen with BD.

The actual reason I'm posting however is that of course Sky only support DD5.1, and not any of the HD audio formats which you can hopefully find on BD.

Whether the difference is discernible to the average ear-lobe or not would no doubt be subject to the same arguments as to whether a good transfer being broadcast via SkyHD is as good as its BD equivalent...



Yeah, I'll hold my hands up and say it took me a few days to realise most of the complaints where about audio behind video which is not the usual way sync issues appear. In that regard it goes beyond the simple video processing of the display to a major hardware issue in the STB as there doesn't appear to be a broadcast issue as people are watching the same programme and no experiencing lip-sync.

So in relation to that unless a BD player goes totally wonky or there is a really badly mastered disc then video ahead of audio should not happen.
 

andrew markwort

Novice Member
Getting back on topic, I've yet to see a film broadcast in HD that looked better than the BD version. Some look nearly the same, but a lot look worse. Technically, there should be no appreciable difference on a like for like comparison. But given that HD broadcasts almost inevitably are pumped out at a lower bandwidth, picture quality is bound to suffer. And as more HD channels come on line I can't see this situation improving.
 

Starburst

Novice Member
Getting back on topic, I've yet to see a film broadcast in HD that looked better than the BD version. Some look nearly the same, but a lot look worse. Technically, there should be no appreciable difference on a like for like comparison. But given that HD broadcasts almost inevitably are pumped out at a lower bandwidth, picture quality is bound to suffer. And as more HD channels come on line I can't see this situation improving.



Same story for SD versus DVD really although the limitations of the display technology made the comparison closer overall at least when the markets matured as early DVD quality is suspect when compared to more recent re-releases from new masters. It's one thing I've never been able to find out or has been reported, do studios differentiate between prints used to supply broadcast customers compared to those that go for Blu-ray authoring especially when no money is being put towards a restoration?
I passed on Excalibur on HD DVD due to the PQ reviews but the recent SKY HD broadcast was pretty good.

As you say if a broadcast and BD were created from the same master then the bitrate is the main deciding factor although when we are talking reasonable screen size for homes the uber high bitrates some BD's are authored at is pure lazy encoding although if you ramp up the screen size to 100" plus then you may begin to see the ultra fine detail that is simply not going to be visible on a screen half the size.

More channels will only be a problem if they are on the same transponder, 30 new channels on 10 new transponders is just fine, 30 new channels on 5 is something to worry about:)
 

bobcar

Novice Member
As you say if a broadcast and BD were created from the same master then the bitrate is the main deciding factor although when we are talking reasonable screen size for homes the uber high bitrates some BD's are authored at is pure lazy encoding although if you ramp up the screen size to 100" plus then you may begin to see the ultra fine detail that is simply not going to be visible on a screen half the size.
Yes but if you have a disk with a certain amount of programming you might as well up the bit rate to the maximum that will fit on the disk - it isn't going to cost any more. Unless of course it means an extra layer and even then it's not that much.
 

PatrickS

Standard Member
I saw a comment a while back from a SKY employee on another forum (anon of course) that SKY do not actually master movies to HD tapes but upscale their movie content from SD masters.

If so, it would be render the comparison invalid. Anyone know if this is the case?
 

Starburst

Novice Member
Yes but if you have a disk with a certain amount of programming you might as well up the bit rate to the maximum that will fit on the disk - it isn't going to cost any more. Unless of course it means an extra layer and even then it's not that much.


Yes it wouldn't really cost you anything and may even reduce the time required to do the encoding for the authoring of a BD disk however it's benefit to the viewer is reduced as you ramp up the bitrate, the law of diminishing returns kicks in quickly simply based on the average screen size and display technology currently in use.

I was never really sold on the Superbit DVD releases although some people swore by them:)
 

andrew markwort

Novice Member
I saw a comment a while back from a SKY employee on another forum (anon of course) that SKY do not actually master movies to HD tapes but upscale their movie content from SD masters.
I think this is hugely improbable. Apart from anything else, the Sky HD broadcasts are nearly always movies that are either already out on high def or are released a few months later (e.g. Zulu). In other words, there's no reason to suppose that Sky ain't using real high def transfers. What makes my mouth water is the thought that The Incredibles has had its high def remastering. If only they'd release it on BD.
 
I wouldnt get to excited by The Incredibles, as CGI goes its isnt that great, really.

Put it this way, is Sky HD as good as BR? Well it was good enough for me to cancel my monthly Blockbuster subscription, which i used purely for BR hire.
 

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