Sky+ -v- Freeview

Discussion in 'Sky Digital TV Forum' started by Richard QC, Dec 16, 2003.

  1. Richard QC

    Richard QC
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    Can anybody please let me know how good is the picture quality on the terrestrial channels BBC1, ITV (mainly) on Freeview when compared to Sky?

    The background.......well having just spent 4 grand on a Plasma, ITV and BBC look really awful on my 43" display when fed an RGB feed from Sky+ (and lets not talk about RF feed). Far too many mpeg blocks make the whole thing look like a jigsaw puzzle, movement looks artificial and almost in slow motion, a big disappointment really. Turning up the noise reduction makes the picture look really mushy and very flat. The movie channels on Sky however look great, so I think having heard rumours about it in the past the problem lies in very poor bit rate ITV and BBC feed on Satellite.

    So my next step is to look at a freeview box for terrestrial but only if the picture quality is good enough to give me nice hi-res images without the mpeg garbage. I don't want to spend another £80-£100 if it won't work as I hope.

    Anybody got any thoughts on this or experienced it and resolved the problem?
     
  2. Starburst

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    I would say that DTT if feed a good quality signal producers better pictures than the same channel on dsat, certainly on the BBC and ITV channels. This is mostly down to the economics of broadcasting on dsat with the need to broadcast multiple regional variations.

    I hope to move to Plasma in the near future and I will also be looking at de-interlacers and scalers for improving the video fed to the display from the various digital sources I use.
    It would be nice though if I bought the Plasma, hooked everything up and it all looked gorgeous but alas UK digital broadcasters get away with murder since there is no controlling body setting standards:(
     
  3. MAW

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    What 43" display? Pio HDE? Or RPTV. Do you have an amp with component switching? If so have a go with a Netgem, it will save you an input, unless you have a shedload of RGB capable scarts. It can do YUV out, or RGB. Can be had for £109, also net capable.
     
  4. LV426

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    In my limited experience (of $ky) I'd say that the Freeview signal, whilst not completely free of compression artefacts, is significcantly better than that offered by $ky, as regards the mainstream FTV channels.
     
  5. Richard QC

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    Thanks for the replies guys.....

    I have the Pioneer 434HDE, no amp at the moment going shopping this weekend for that.

    I think we are in a pretty strong signal area for freeview so maybe I'll go pay a visit to a local retailer and see what they have on display (if anything) and scrutinise the picture quality.

    Your comments seem to indicate this is one way forward.
     
  6. deman77

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    Richard,

    ge on the phone to SKY and don't let them go until they send out an engineer to realign your dish. Make sure you are very persistent, and don't buy any crap they'll be feeding you, it's the usual customer support tactics. Freeview gives better picture then SKY but from what you described, your SKY just seems to have a rubbish signal. Also, some of the old boxes seem to give worse picture quality (upgrade should be on par with buying a freeview box pricewise). Do this first as you are likely to see an improvement with 0 cost.
     
  7. GAmbrose

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    I'd certainly say it was more of a dodgy signal.

    I've got a Panny 42" PWD6 and Sky+ connected via RGB -> YUV convertor and it looks fab.

    Gary A
     
  8. Line_Man

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    What does signal quality and strength say?
    Also to get 100% signal quality and strength, what size triax dish do I need? 66cm? 88cm?
     
  9. valmiki

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    buy a freeview box - I recommend the new Sony one - from Comet, take it home and try it. If it still looks pants just return it! thats the easy answer, and as far as I know the only way you will get the right answer. I use the Sony freeview box on a 42" Tosh RP tv, and it looks pretty good - with the occasional 'jigsaw' but a big improvement on sky+.
     
  10. ROBERTT

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    I too have the Pioneer 434. The PQ on DVD is amazing but Sky+ = Garbage. How Sky gets away with broadcasting endless channels of crap and all almost unwatchable quality wise is beyond me.

    We want HI-DEF and we want it now!!!!!
     
  11. Starburst

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    SKY only has direct control of those channels that carry the SKY brand, they can not prevent any channel with an ITC license from being carried on the EPG. The BBC, ITV and the vast majority of the other channels manage their own compression and bitrates and they are to blame for their poor PQ.
    The basic technology of SKY D, DTT and Digital cable is exactly the same and most of the PQ issues can be traced back to penny pinching on transponder capacity coupled with poor mpegII encoding and weak NTSC to PAL conversions.

    Amen to High Definition :)
     
  12. Richard QC

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    Thanks for the input, guys I have made a few improvements with tweaking settings and changing cables etc but it still isn't anywhere near what I would ideally like.

    I think trying the Freeview option is next.

    The real sad thing is the adverts look FAR better than the actual programs!!!!!!!!
     
  13. Stereo Steve

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    You can always integrate the two and use the freeview when possible and sky for other channels or recording.
     

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