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34764170

join:2007-09-06
Etobicoke, ON
reply to Guspaz

Re: Netflix Super HD/Open Connect

said by Guspaz:

Hulu Plus? Amazon Prime? iTunes? VOD services? Traditional television services? Rental stores? PVRs? IPTV startups? Aereo? Piracy? RedBox Instant? HBO's upcoming VOD service?

Depends on perspective..

A lot of these services lack hardware support which is where Netflix has done a great job. They might be fine if you're Ok sitting in front of a PC.

Some of these are limited in regional availability or limited by the ISP such as IPTV (.e.g. Zazeen).

VOD requires cable/IPTV.

Rental stores stores are not streaming, don't count.

So almost all of these are not competition for me.

I see you included piracy. I consider legal services as competition. Of course you could pirate practically everything.

Provide a service like Netflix with the good hardware support and widespread availability and I would consider that competition. RedBox Instant has the possibility of being that second option but they'll need to work on the hardware support, lot more content and of course actually being available here.

vikingisson

join:2010-01-22
Mississauga, ON
reply to El Quintron

I'll go along with all the numbers speculation and reasoning behind supporting or not supporting various platforms. I don't think the Flix has nearly the problem people think they do of being available on a software app vs one black box or another. It's all moot if they would simply allow proper apps on the multitude of media players such as XBMC, all the variants of XBMC, and all things technically capable. It costs them nothing to do it.

The classic examples are Boxee and SageTV. Both applications are dead after finally admitting that things such as Netflix will never be allowed. The PC and now even the smart phone is more capable than a black box for things like Netflix. It isn't a technical issue and it's not about a perceived small market segment.



Guspaz
Guspaz
Premium,MVM
join:2001-11-05
Montreal, QC
kudos:23
reply to El Quintron

Am I missing something? Boxee supports Netflix, and SageTV doesn't exist anymore...
--
Developer: Tomato/MLPPP, Linux/MLPPP, etc »fixppp.org


vikingisson

join:2010-01-22
Mississauga, ON

said by Guspaz:

Am I missing something? Boxee supports Netflix, and SageTV doesn't exist anymore...

Boxee the software app that runs Boxee *Box* doesn't exist anymore. That's an entire saga in itself.

34764170

join:2007-09-06
Etobicoke, ON

said by vikingisson:

Boxee the software app that runs Boxee *Box* doesn't exist anymore. That's an entire saga in itself.

No, it's Boxee the software that runs on Windows. It was out of their hands anyway.

34764170

join:2007-09-06
Etobicoke, ON
reply to vikingisson

said by vikingisson:

I'll go along with all the numbers speculation and reasoning behind supporting or not supporting various platforms. I don't think the Flix has nearly the problem people think they do of being available on a software app vs one black box or another. It's all moot if they would simply allow proper apps on the multitude of media players such as XBMC, all the variants of XBMC, and all things technically capable. It costs them nothing to do it.

The classic examples are Boxee and SageTV. Both applications are dead after finally admitting that things such as Netflix will never be allowed. The PC and now even the smart phone is more capable than a black box for things like Netflix. It isn't a technical issue and it's not about a perceived small market segment.

It costs them developer time to develop the apps. That is not nothing. Go find some developers that will work for Netflix with no salary and see how that goes.

I don't care about a smart phone for Netflix and I don't want to sit in front of my PC to use Netflix. I don't use a smart phone as a media player. Then I would need two phones.


nettles

@teksavvy.com

So there's no way to access SuperHD with US Netflix correct? Just the Canadian one?

Also what annoys me is that you can't actually tell if the SuperHD video in Canadian netflix which you're watching is actually in SuperHD/1080p or whatever like you could with a TV signal.

If the internet speed for example slows down or struggles then I know that netflix automatically switches the feed to a lower quality one and it's hard to tell.

Anyways it'll take some time and I shouldn't complain too much. The fact that we have 1080p via streaming is pretty amazing even if it's not working the way we want now.


vikingisson

join:2010-01-22
Mississauga, ON

1 edit
reply to 34764170

said by 34764170:

It costs them developer time to develop the apps. That is not nothing. Go find some developers that will work for Netflix with no salary and see how that goes.

I don't care about a smart phone for Netflix and I don't want to sit in front of my PC to use Netflix. I don't use a smart phone as a media player. Then I would need two phones.

So Netflix is writing the dozens of apps on dozens of platforms now? I don't think so. They give out the spec and API and most importantly the blessing to actually work.

They do not and never will allow the same thing on a software media centre. Technically it is the same thing as every other black box where it does work except perhaps even easier.

Exactly what is the difference between you watching content from your PS3 or whatever box and me watching on my TV that happens to come from a PC? I've been doing it much longer than Boxee Box, XBOX, Roku, Blu Ray players, etc. it's the same thing, my remote control works just like yours and except for most of the bigger commercial providers such as Netflix I'm doing the same thing.

I agree that media consumption on a smart phone is more limited when it comes to video. But my pc as a media centre works just fine except that pay services won't play (actually they do work but I have to switch to a browser for example, pretty easy). The "developers" write hundreds of "apps" to access everything else, they'd be happy to write one to access Netflix if Netflix would let them.

vikingisson

join:2010-01-22
Mississauga, ON
reply to nettles

said by nettles :

So there's no way to access SuperHD with US Netflix correct? Just the Canadian one?

Also what annoys me is that you can't actually tell if the SuperHD video in Canadian netflix which you're watching is actually in SuperHD/1080p or whatever like you could with a TV signal.

If the internet speed for example slows down or struggles then I know that netflix automatically switches the feed to a lower quality one and it's hard to tell.

Anyways it'll take some time and I shouldn't complain too much. The fact that we have 1080p via streaming is pretty amazing even if it's not working the way we want now.

That's a different subject but yes you can watch Netflix in other markets. If SuperHD is available on your chosen box and in the market you want then sure, it can be done. Just not officially. Test it with a switchable VPN/proxy, it just isn't a topic for this thread.


Guspaz
Guspaz
Premium,MVM
join:2001-11-05
Montreal, QC
kudos:23
reply to nettles

said by nettles :

Also what annoys me is that you can't actually tell if the SuperHD video in Canadian netflix which you're watching is actually in SuperHD/1080p or whatever like you could with a TV signal.

You can. On the Windows 8 client, hit CTRL-ALT-SHIFT-S and check the bitrate you're streaming at (3000 was the old "HD", anything above that is the new bitrates, 5800 being the highest). On the PS3, hit the Info button on your remote (if you're using a PS3 remote), or one of the other buttons on the PS3 controller if you use that. That doesn't show you the bitrate, but it does say what quality it's streaming in a text description like "Medium/SD" or "High/SD". Many other Netflix streaming devices also let you see the current quality level.
--
Developer: Tomato/MLPPP, Linux/MLPPP, etc »fixppp.org

34764170

join:2007-09-06
Etobicoke, ON
reply to vikingisson

said by vikingisson:

So Netflix is writing the dozens of apps on dozens of platforms now? I don't think so. They give out the spec and API and most importantly the blessing to actually work.

Every system/device using Netflix uses a player developed by Netflix.

I have no interest in using a media centre PC for media consumption. They have a whole bunch of issues I have no interest in dealing with.

There is no way Netflix will ever allow 3rd party player development, it makes absolutely no sense at all and they would not be allowed to by the content producers providing them the content.

vikingisson

join:2010-01-22
Mississauga, ON

Well Brad you might not be interested in a media PC but plenty of us are. Functionally it is the same as a black box. What I'm not interested in buying is a black box. No interest in playing games so a game console makes no sense for me. No interest in blu ray either. Or a smart tv. I haven't met a black box that I like or does things better than what I already have. Except for Netflix. I could get a box but then give up most of what I already do, I'd rather give up Netflix.

They could write an app if they wanted, they create apps for all sorts of cheap crappy blue ray players that surely have a smaller market share than PCs. Or as I think they license access like so many other apps.



ekster
Hi there
Premium
join:2010-07-16
Lachine, QC
kudos:3
Reviews:
·FreePhoneLine
reply to El Quintron

Quick question about Windows 7 vs Windows 8 for Netflix.

if I'm reading this right, Win8 uses an app that supports h.264? So does that mean that the regular HD will also use significantly less bandwidth vs Win7 on my HPTC? Or is it just theory so far and the compression is the same on both systems?

I might actually consider getting Win8 if it really uses h.264.



Guspaz
Guspaz
Premium,MVM
join:2001-11-05
Montreal, QC
kudos:23
reply to El Quintron

They seem to use the same bitrates regardless of if it's VC-1 or h.264 (either that or the silverlight client actually using h.264).

Quality-wise, there's not that much difference between VC-1 and h.264, and a lot depends on the encoder.
--
Developer: Tomato/MLPPP, Linux/MLPPP, etc »fixppp.org



addp009
Premium
join:2003-03-08
Kitchener, ON
reply to El Quintron

I started a Neflix.ca trial seeing that Teksavvy support "SuperHD". However, using the Windows 8 app, it seems like many movies are limited to 1750kbps and it looks worst than youtube videos. (Tried with Transformers and Ghost Protocol.)

I did see some TV shows with 5800kbps but the never selected those bit rate. It seems to top out at 3800kbps.

Anyone else experiencing the same?
--
Addp009's Site



Guspaz
Guspaz
Premium,MVM
join:2001-11-05
Montreal, QC
kudos:23

1750 is the highest standard-def bitrate. It either means the show you're watching isn't available in HD at all (let alone SuperHD), or in the case of movies like Ghost Protocol, are only available in HD on a TV-based device.

You might think the Windows 8 client would count as a TV-based device, but it doesn't support a protected content pipeline. As in, if you hit the printscreen button while running the Windows 8 netflix client, it will take a picture of what you're watching, so somebody could use a screen recorder to pirate a movie. Nobody would ever want to do something so stupid when there are far higher quality sources to rip like blurays and itunes webrips, but hollywood cares about such things.

If you're watching something and Netflix doesn't want to go all the way to 5800, it could be because your connection isn't fast enough, or there's congestion, but you can also force it on the PC-based clients. Click the checbox for manual control, the radio button next to 5800 Kbps, and then click apply. For the rest of that session on that title it will only use that bitrate.
--
Developer: Tomato/MLPPP, Linux/MLPPP, etc »fixppp.org



xxgg

join:2004-01-15
reply to El Quintron

Well... if you are going to upgrade to Windows 8,

Do it before Upgrade promo is over. End of the month.

»www.microsoftstore.com/store/msc···Wz3miQ6Q



addp009
Premium
join:2003-03-08
Kitchener, ON
reply to Guspaz

said by Guspaz:

1750 is the highest standard-def bitrate. It either means the show you're watching isn't available in HD at all (let alone SuperHD), or in the case of movies like Ghost Protocol, are only available in HD on a TV-based device.

You might think the Windows 8 client would count as a TV-based device, but it doesn't support a protected content pipeline. As in, if you hit the printscreen button while running the Windows 8 netflix client, it will take a picture of what you're watching, so somebody could use a screen recorder to pirate a movie. Nobody would ever want to do something so stupid when there are far higher quality sources to rip like blurays and itunes webrips, but hollywood cares about such things.

Wow. What BS! Windows Vista/7/8 *has* protected pipeline. The app just needs to use Windows Media Foundation and Protected Media Path with a HDCP monitor. This sucks...

I guess I'll judge from the selection, and then figure out if I want a Netflix enabled set-top box later.
--
Addp009's Site


Guspaz
Guspaz
Premium,MVM
join:2001-11-05
Montreal, QC
kudos:23
reply to El Quintron

"Available in HD on your TV" is one of the main reasons why my 4x2 matrix switch connects to both my home theatre projector *and* my computer monitor :P

In effect, any of my input devices (currently PC, PS3, 360, cable box) can go to any output (projector, LCD monitor). Still, I miss the inability to alt-tab when I do that; switching monitor inputs is much slower than an ALT-TAB would have.

I kind of wish the U2711 had discrete input source buttons, but then I guess the whole monitor would be covered in buttons (it's got something like 7 inputs, including two DVI for some reason)
--
Developer: Tomato/MLPPP, Linux/MLPPP, etc »fixppp.org


34764170

join:2007-09-06
Etobicoke, ON
reply to vikingisson

said by vikingisson:

Well Brad you might not be interested in a media PC but plenty of us are. Functionally it is the same as a black box. What I'm not interested in buying is a black box. No interest in playing games so a game console makes no sense for me. No interest in blu ray either. Or a smart tv. I haven't met a black box that I like or does things better than what I already have. Except for Netflix. I could get a box but then give up most of what I already do, I'd rather give up Netflix.

They could write an app if they wanted, they create apps for all sorts of cheap crappy blue ray players that surely have a smaller market share than PCs. Or as I think they license access like so many other apps.

But "plenty of you" are a tiny percentage of the market. Even Windows users over all are probably the smallest percentage of viewers of Netflix compared to all the other devices used to access Netflix.

Anyway, you can do whatever you want. But you still lose. Find me an HTPC that is less than $200, doesn't involve Windows, is as small, quiet and low on power requirements as a media player/Blu-ray player. Then I'll consider even using it at all.


Guspaz
Guspaz
Premium,MVM
join:2001-11-05
Montreal, QC
kudos:23
reply to El Quintron

Actually, I suspect that PC users are fairly large as an individual platform, since Netflix made a big deal of the PS3 being bigger than the PC when the PS3 was announced as the single most popular Netflix platform.

But when broken down into classes (mobile, STB, PC), I would suspect that the PC is a small minority due to the sheer number of individual platforms in the STB class (into which I include things like smart TVs).

In terms of an HTPC that is less than $200, a first gen AppleTV might technically qualify, since they used an x86 processor and you could load Linux (including XBMC) on them. Of course, they don't play blurays.

A sub-$200 HTPC is probably still possible with general components, but you'd have to rely heavily on an iGPU... Darn it, you've got me curious now, to see if such a system is possible :P

You'll never get the power usage down that low for that price. It's not that matching a bluray player's power usage isn't possible (word is IvyBridge goes down to 10w, and that Haswell will hit 7w, while bluray players tend to be 15-25w), but you won't get it for under $200.
--
Developer: Tomato/MLPPP, Linux/MLPPP, etc »fixppp.org


vikingisson

join:2010-01-22
Mississauga, ON

I won't reply in detail or to anyone in particular, there's just more here than I give a crap about. My HTPC cost more than $200 to be sure but I've had it for years and years. How many black boxes have people bought in that time? I have tuners and can record uncompressed HD, your pissy black box can't do that. It does a lot more and I can change it, upgrade it, whatever I want plus it serves the whole house and anywhere I am remotely. It can dance circles around every proprietary box out there and is still far superior as a PVR. But that's me.

I won't argue how big the PC market is because I don't know and neither does anyone here. What does that matter? We're big enough and bigger than any single off brand piece of crap blu ray player. The app is simple, their issue is not about numbers or coding.

As for a cheapo box that isn't locked under a brand name, two words, Raspberry Pi. It isn't what I use but I tested one running XBMC. At least as good as a Boxee Box ('cept for no easy Netflix). $35 plus 30 minutes of my time to set it up one time.

C'est la vie, I'll just save my $8/mth.



Guspaz
Guspaz
Premium,MVM
join:2001-11-05
Montreal, QC
kudos:23
reply to El Quintron

XBMC/Pi has some crucial flaws when it comes to audio decoding. Even though they've written a hardware accelerated DTS decoder, DTS won't give them the time of day when they try to buy a license. Doesn't matter if you're bitstreaming, though.

Also, the Pi (or XBMC on any platform, really) won't play blurays, since there's no commercial bluray software for ARM, and none of the opensource solutions even support java menus (which most bluray discs use).
--
Developer: Tomato/MLPPP, Linux/MLPPP, etc »fixppp.org


vikingisson

join:2010-01-22
Mississauga, ON

I don't know what you use but I'm sure it lacks something I'd want.
I don't care about blu rays, I don't have a player and will skip getting one. 1080 is 1080 with or without blu ray. I've got plenty of HD content without ever buying a player or disc. If I used a Pi as a full time player I'd buy the $2 codec which then covers the content it doesn't currently handle but most of what I have is playable just fine.

I said that I don't use the Pi as my main player but if I trimmed down to the basics I'd use it vs a Boxee Box. It's that good.

I still prefer my HTPC. It does all server duties for the house plus all the media I'd ever want. the only thing I could add is pay content but without cable tv or other over priced crap I'm fine without that. $8 for Netflix seemed like a good deal but if I don't see more HD content I'll drop it. The real saving grace is watching Netflix from any of their markets which greatly increases the available content.



Guspaz
Guspaz
Premium,MVM
join:2001-11-05
Montreal, QC
kudos:23

1 edit
reply to El Quintron

I didn't quite manage. Here's what I came up with:

Small form factor approach:
Complete system, no optical: $211
Complete system, external DVD: $236
Complete system, external bluray: $279

Regular sized case approach:
Complete system, no optical: $151
Complete system, bluray drive: $177

All of that is Atom (because it's the cheapest) and SSD (because surprisingly a 32GB SSD is cheaper than a regular hard disk of ANY capacity). Relies on hardware decoding using iGPU. Power usage should be not much different than a bluray player, but the regular sized case approach is much larger.

Curious to see the cheapest you could do this with a current-gen (sandy bridge or ivy bridge, since they have decent iGPUs) non-atom CPU, I came up with a complete Sandy Bridge system, about the same size as my videotron cable box, for $242 with bluray drive, $216 without.

Here were the specs of the various parts I looked at on newegg:

$155 Atom case/psu/mobo/cpu
$10 2GB DDR3-1066
$46 32GB SSD
$25 external DVD reader or $68 external bluray reader

$60 atom mobo/cpu
$35 case/psu
$10 2GB DDR3-1066
$46 32GB SSD
$26 bluray reader

$120 STB-sized LGA1155 case/mobo
$40 Celeron G465 (dual core Sandy Bridge with iGPU)
$10 2GB DDR3-1066
$46 32GB SSD
$26 bluray reader

$120 STB-sized LGA1155 case/mobo
$40 Celeron G465 (dual core Sandy Bridge with iGPU)
$10 2GB DDR3-1066
$46 32GB SSD
$26 bluray reader

EDIT: I would never actually buy such a system. If I wanted to build an HTPC, I would do it right. If I wanted it small, I'd buy an Intel NUC and not bother with bluray because I have my PS3 for that. If I wanted a more normal sized system, I'd buy a higher-end STB-sized case, and an i7-3770T (the only 45w quad-core Intel CPU with HD4000 iGPU) and give it 8GB of RAM and a modern Intel SSD of 80GB or more (like the 120GB 330). This would cost a whole lot more, but would be much more capable.

The Intel NUC has me sorely tempted for HTPC use, but with the overheating issues of the first-gen NUC, I'll wait for the second-gen models before considering them again.
--
Developer: Tomato/MLPPP, Linux/MLPPP, etc »fixppp.org


vikingisson

join:2010-01-22
Mississauga, ON

1 recommendation

You forgot the remote control.


34764170

join:2007-09-06
Etobicoke, ON
reply to Guspaz

said by Guspaz:

But when broken down into classes (mobile, STB, PC), I would suspect that the PC is a small minority due to the sheer number of individual platforms in the STB class (into which I include things like smart TVs).

This is what I was talking about.

said by Guspaz:

In terms of an HTPC that is less than $200, a first gen AppleTV might technically qualify, since they used an x86 processor and you could load Linux (including XBMC) on them. Of course, they don't play blurays.

I don't want an Apple TV especially first gen. I don't care about Blu-rays'. I don't want physical media. Then there is the issue of no Netflix so it's all for nothing.

said by Guspaz:

A sub-$200 HTPC is probably still possible with general components, but you'd have to rely heavily on an iGPU... Darn it, you've got me curious now, to see if such a system is possible :P

Might be able to find a system with a decent ATI/AMD GPU.. but definitely not with crappy Intel GPUs.

said by Guspaz:

You'll never get the power usage down that low for that price. It's not that matching a bluray player's power usage isn't possible (word is IvyBridge goes down to 10w, and that Haswell will hit 7w, while bluray players tend to be 15-25w), but you won't get it for under $200.

This is an important feature for me.

34764170

join:2007-09-06
Etobicoke, ON
reply to El Quintron

The RPi I won't consider. I'd consider something based on a SoC with a more decent CPU/GPU combo and which is ARMv7 based such as Cortex A9/A15 (Tegra 3/4, Exynos, OMAP 4/5), Snapdragon but it also has to be a fully finished product hardware wise and not a bare board like these development/prototype boards.



clarknova

join:2010-02-23
Grande Prairie, AB
kudos:7
Reviews:
·TekSavvy DSL
reply to vikingisson

I have altogether too many HTPC/STB options, and none of them what I would consider ideal.

HTPC: Zotac IONITX (Atom 330 + Nvidia GPU), XBMCbuntu Frodo. Great for streaming off the NAS, but terrible Youtube performance and no Netflix. Another annoyance is that only AC3 and stereo work over HDMI, for reasons I have not yet been able to identify. Power consumption is mediocre at ~32W.

Roku 2 XD: 1080p/5.1 output. Plays Netflix and a bunch of other channels, USB support, but no good option to stream from the LAN. I tried a couple channels that claim to stream from a local web server, but these were buggy and non-free. I'm not interested in something that requires dlna. For some reason Netflix SuperHD options don't show up, despite this being listed as a supported device.

Samsung smart tv: Decent picture. Netflix works in HD/5.1, but no SuperHD, and the interface is terribly slow. No LAN play without dlna, and limited to 30 Mbps.

Samsung smart receiver: Same features and weaknesses as the smart tv, but amazingly no 5.1 option in Netflix.

Windows 8 pc: SuperHD/5.1. This is actually a very functional option for Netflix and LAN play, but it'll be a cold day on Venus before I drop $ on Windows for an HTPC. The only reason I have it on my desktop is because of a work-subsidized home license. I suppose I could make the HTPC my work-at-home pc :P Not sure how Win8 would run on the old Zotac.

So in summary, there are lots of options out there for Netflix and similar streaming media solutions, but I have yet to see one that is ideal. Something like the PS3 or a beefier HTPC might do everything I want, but I'm not at the point that I want to lay out that kind of money, nor would I want a player under the tv burning up 70 watts or more
--
db



creed3020
Premium
join:2006-04-26
Kitchener, ON
kudos:2
Reviews:
·TekSavvy Cable
reply to El Quintron

Build a proper HTPC and don't look back. Messing about with all these streamers is ridiculous as you're fussing around with them ad nauseam because not everything works 100%.

Go here and you'll find a great community of wise resources for getting your HTPC done right: »forum.xbmc.org/forumdisplay.php?fid=112

I am of course biased to a Windows based HTPC and have built many for friends/family. Here is mine: »forum.xbmc.org/showthread.php?tid=114724