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BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH
reply to motorola870

Re: [HD] FIOS Moving to MPEG-4 HD

I'm surprised that TWC has anything in analog, I thought they were the first to dump analog completely? Any system with analogs is living in the past, even Comcast's incredibly slow upgrade process has finally gotten rid of analogs over their entire system. Analog makes no sense: you can put 3 HD's (I wish 2...) on for every analog you remove, and if you move to MPEG-4, now you're looking at probably 5 HD's.

Joe12345678

join:2003-07-22
Des Plaines, IL
reply to cypherstream
I think rogers cable and other ontario uses SDV and they have the super sports with up to 23 HD channels for stuff like NHL CI, NFL ST and others.

Shaw cable uses MPEG 4 for NHL CI HD (up to 15 HD feeds) and NFL ST HD (up to 15 Feeds) and other channels??

Now at the very lest can comcast do a limited SDV where they trun off VOD slots for part time stuff like RSN overflows, red zone, goal line / espn buzzer beater, game 1-9 HD, team 1-9 HD, and others.

Also maybe down the road iN DEMAND can have the very part time HD PPV 2 come back also maybe add TEAM 10 HD and GAME 10-14 HD.

ESPN Game Plan HD Full Court HD soon?

att-uverse has 10 HD channels for NBA LP. Directv has DUAL HD feeds for most NBA, NHL, and MLB games.

Now in the past comcast talked about wanting NFL ST (I think the last time was 2-3 years ago when they talked about swapping NFL ST for CSN Philly) on directv

and now maybe in 2015 directv may not be the only place to get NFL ST in the USA.

Joe12345678

join:2003-07-22
Des Plaines, IL
reply to Mike Wolf
Now lets say comcast or others wants to make a move into the bar scene that directv has lock on due to NFL ST and to a lesser part most NBA, NHL and MLB games in HD.

can a sdv system drive a bar useing say 8-15+ part time lower use channels? will others on the same node find them self's unable to use VOD for prime sports time?

On directv the NHL, NBA, MLB and MLS feeds are mostly RSN remaps that are up 24/7 + the few part time Rsn over flows and sub feeds.

But to fit in NFL ST + other part time RSN needs they need to shut down most of the PPV movie HD channels. But then again they have like 34 HD ppv channels that is used to fill part time needs and when they are not needed for part time stuff they run PPV movies on them.


Cthen

join:2004-08-01
Detroit, MI
Reviews:
·Verizon Wireless..
reply to JeepMatt
More than likely the usual will happen. They will wait out everyone else on their roll out then take the most obscure way possible to deploy what ever they got coming next.

You have to keep in mind that it's not really about doing what they can to fit customers wants/needs. It's about giving as little as possible but just enough to keep customers mouths shut while charging the most they can possibly get away with.
--
"I like to refer to myself as an Adult Film Efficienato." - Stuart Bondek


Mike Wolf

join:2009-05-24
Beachwood, NJ
kudos:4
reply to Joe12345678
Joe, the problem is , who exactly determines what channels are "part time lower use channels" What I watch on television all the time is different then what someone else may watch on television all the time.

BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH
Whatever has terrible ratings. There's data out there on what people don't watch.


motorola870

join:2008-12-07
Arlington, TX
kudos:4
reply to Mike Wolf
said by Mike Wolf:

Joe, the problem is , who exactly determines what channels are "part time lower use channels" What I watch on television all the time is different then what someone else may watch on television all the time.

it is all software based they poll the boxes and overall the channels that have the least viewing will be switched and if the cable company needs room to add more SDV channels they move more channels that are least viewed.

The system I am on switches everything except for:

2-99 digital simulcast
local HD/sub channels
music choice
National Geographic
We TV
LMN
PBS Kids Sprout
Boomerang
AMC
Hallmark
OWN
Youtoo TV
ZEE TV
TV Asia
Cartoon Network SAP
Mun 2
Tr3s
HBO
Showtime
Cinemax
Starz
The Movie Channel
Big 12 PPV
FSN+
Shop NBC
GAC
TEN PPV
Playboy Premium
Penthouse PPV
Indemand 1
Indemand 2
HDPPV
Discovery Channel HD
TNT HD
ESPN HD
ESPN 2 HD
HBO HD
Showtime HD


motorola870

join:2008-12-07
Arlington, TX
kudos:4
reply to Joe12345678
said by Joe12345678:

Now lets say comcast or others wants to make a move into the bar scene that directv has lock on due to NFL ST and to a lesser part most NBA, NHL and MLB games in HD.

can a sdv system drive a bar useing say 8-15+ part time lower use channels? will others on the same node find them self's unable to use VOD for prime sports time?

On directv the NHL, NBA, MLB and MLS feeds are mostly RSN remaps that are up 24/7 + the few part time Rsn over flows and sub feeds.

But to fit in NFL ST + other part time RSN needs they need to shut down most of the PPV movie HD channels. But then again they have like 34 HD ppv channels that is used to fill part time needs and when they are not needed for part time stuff they run PPV movies on them.

VOD and SDV are two different things and TWC in most systems has two different separate pools of QAMs for SDV and VOD they do not affect each other in most cases there are a very small amount of TWC systems where VOD and SDV share QAM carriers but it is not like that in most systems.

Also the max loading TWC does for any SDV QAM is:

3 HD channels
2 HD channels + 2 or 3 SD channels
1 HD channel + 6 SD channels
10 SD channels


Mike Wolf

join:2009-05-24
Beachwood, NJ
kudos:4
reply to BiggA
said by BiggA:

Whatever has terrible ratings. There's data out there on what people don't watch.

Yeah that's why a boat load of popular shows get cancelled every year...that's a flawed method.

Joe12345678

join:2003-07-22
Des Plaines, IL
reply to Mike Wolf
Talking about part time sports feeds that are not 24/7 channels. Better to switch them then to fill them with looping help videos or a logo screen when off air.

BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH
reply to Mike Wolf
Or they could use actual data from the boxes of what people are watching...

The Q

join:2008-06-26
Collegeville, PA
reply to Mike Wolf
said by Mike Wolf:

said by BiggA:

Whatever has terrible ratings. There's data out there on what people don't watch.

Yeah that's why a boat load of popular shows get cancelled every year...that's a flawed method.

shows that get good ratings get more advertising dollars and don't get cancelled.

Shows that aren't watched or that cost more to produce than what they bring in in ad revenue get cancelled. That is the current business of television.

The most popular shows usually don't get cancelled.

Joe12345678

join:2003-07-22
Des Plaines, IL
reply to motorola870
but can they say trun off 13-15 VOD slots to fit in NFL ST that is only needed 1 day of the week for part of the year? or they can cheap out and trun off the team HD and game HD channels to fit it in. (lets just say we see little change in cable systems over the next few years) and maybe NFL ST is open to all but not in the hands of in demand.

RalphKramden

join:2007-01-10
Newtown, PA
said by Joe12345678:

but can they say trun off 13-15 VOD slots to fit in NFL ST that is only needed 1 day of the week for part of the year? or they can cheap out and trun off the team HD and game HD channels to fit it in.

I would bet that Comcast Having Sunday Ticket has nothing to do with fitting it in. If they think they can make money with ST, the next time the contact is up for bid, they will pay what the NFL is asking and make it work. More likely a business decision and not a bandwidth issue.

BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH
reply to Joe12345678
Couldn't they give it fixed channel numbers and then turn the channels on and off as they have programming on them, without using SDV? So that if you're tuning on a day that they don't have anything on, you just get an error?

Joe12345678

join:2003-07-22
Des Plaines, IL
I talking about bandwidth fixed channel numbers is not the issues. Can they say trun off VOD slots to fit it in or do need to have 13-15 HD slots + 13-15 SD slots (may be able to go HD only) be tied up with a NFL ST LOGO screen most of the time?

Look at info channel HD most of the time it's just a looping help video when it's not needed for CSN + HD. Now it's other question as to why it's be used for CLTV HD mirroring CLTV SD / CSN + SD that dates back the old analog days when it was CLTV and sports channel + / FSN + sheering a channel.

I would think by the time that analog was turned off that CLTV and CSN + would no longer need to be on the same channel and that was some time befor there was a CLTV HD.

CSN + HD and MOJO HD used to share the slot (comcast only) other systems had CSN + HD on it's own as CSN + SD on it's own (they did not have CLTV)

That does not bold to well if they can't get that right that they will be able to pull off NFL ST. Hell they don't even have goal line HD or big ten alts in HD (other cable systems do) but they do have red zone HD what are they doing with it's bandwidth then it's not needed. Now it's one thing to have 1 HD / 1 SD very part time channel but 13-15?? maybe more if in HD and SD.


Mike Wolf

join:2009-05-24
Beachwood, NJ
kudos:4
reply to The Q
Not always, if the show decides to "go out on top" when the ratings are good but the cast or producers want to end the show. Anyway this is all irrelevant to the topic.


motorola870

join:2008-12-07
Arlington, TX
kudos:4
reply to Joe12345678
said by Joe12345678:

I talking about bandwidth fixed channel numbers is not the issues. Can they say trun off VOD slots to fit it in or do need to have 13-15 HD slots + 13-15 SD slots (may be able to go HD only) be tied up with a NFL ST LOGO screen most of the time?

Look at info channel HD most of the time it's just a looping help video when it's not needed for CSN + HD. Now it's other question as to why it's be used for CLTV HD mirroring CLTV SD / CSN + SD that dates back the old analog days when it was CLTV and sports channel + / FSN + sheering a channel.

I would think by the time that analog was turned off that CLTV and CSN + would no longer need to be on the same channel and that was some time befor there was a CLTV HD.

CSN + HD and MOJO HD used to share the slot (comcast only) other systems had CSN + HD on it's own as CSN + SD on it's own (they did not have CLTV)

That does not bold to well if they can't get that right that they will be able to pull off NFL ST. Hell they don't even have goal line HD or big ten alts in HD (other cable systems do) but they do have red zone HD what are they doing with it's bandwidth then it's not needed. Now it's one thing to have 1 HD / 1 SD very part time channel but 13-15?? maybe more if in HD and SD.

once more you can't steal QAM spots from VOD a that bandwidth is dedicated to movies and shows that on the VOD server you can't just add and take away from the VOD QAM pool. Plus 1 QAM has room for 10 SD programs for VOD. Using 1 or 2 QAMs is not going to kill anything for season ticket. It would be better that if a cable company did get season ticket that they use SDV as the channels will only be on when someone tunes into the channel.


cypherstream
Premium,MVM
join:2004-12-02
Reading, PA
kudos:3
reply to Joe12345678
If NFL ST does come to CC, then they could just make it MPEG4. Its a new package that "in order to get NFL Sunday Ticket, please upgrade to a new cable box". Only those that can afford to subscribe to that package would maybe need to swap out a box (likely they already have a box).

Most NFL ST customers would be new people signing up anyway. NFL ST would bring in a lot of new subscribers and they would just be given an MPEG4 set top from day one.

So you would only need 3 QAM's. 5 HD, 5 HD, 5 HD. Make it HD only because HD boxes can send a down converted SD signal for those who need it. NFL sports nuts who pay the $300 a season or whatever likely have a big HDTV anyway. If they can afford that cost for NFL and are that die hard into it, you bet they have at least an HDTV and maybe even surround sound.

What I'm saying is any particular new or niche package should be migrated to MPEG4. Its the easiest way to start a transition.


Cthen

join:2004-08-01
Detroit, MI
Reviews:
·Verizon Wireless..

1 edit
reply to Mike Wolf
said by Mike Wolf:

Not always, if the show decides to "go out on top" when the ratings are good but the cast or producers want to end the show. Anyway this is all irrelevant to the topic.

That's how some series shows I used to watch ended. One of them kept going on top every season but at the same time, most of the cast wanted to pursue other things and couldn't do a lot outside of the series due to it's work load.

Another fine example of that is the show Home Improvement. Tim Allen was offered $50 million per episode by the ABC network to keep the show going rather than ending it due to it's popularity. After talking it over with other cast members he still decided to end it so him and other cast members could go on to other projects or in some cases, some cast members decided to retire after a good long run like that.

EDIT:
Also keep in mind that some die out due to greed as well. Some shows will start out on their way to the top or make it to the top quickly. Some times actors/actresses get to big for their britches and will demand more money than what can be afforded with no bending or compromise in sight. In a lot of those cases you just can't swap out one person for another to play that role after some one has well established themselves in that role. So the only logical choice there is to just end it.
--
"I like to refer to myself as an Adult Film Efficienato." - Stuart Bondek


Mike Wolf

join:2009-05-24
Beachwood, NJ
kudos:4
Cool. Speaking of Home Improvement, it's interesting that only Tim Allen, Patricia Richardson, Richard Karn, Pamela Anderson, Blake Clark, and Zachery Ty Bryan continued acting where as Jonathan Taylor Thomas continued until 2006, Taran Noah Smith continued until 2002 and Earl Hindman continued until 2003 upon his passing.

BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH
reply to Joe12345678
But if they are sports packages, and they can manage them remotely, and they push them through every node, I don't think they need SDV. SDV is used for a whole bunch of channels that are always available at the node, but only pushed down from the node onto the RF when someone is actually watching one.


DrDrew
That others may surf
Premium
join:2009-01-28
SoCal
kudos:17
said by BiggA :

SDV is used for a whole bunch of channels that are always available at the node, but only pushed down from the node onto the RF when someone is actually watching one.

SDV switches channels for groups of nodes at the headend, not the node. It's all streamed on the network to the headend and turned on the nodes when someone requests it. The node itself is just a media converter from fiber to coax and back.

Sports channels and other part time channels like porn, PPV, and international channels are great uses for SDV. As are mostly day time (sprout, disney, other kids channels) vs. nighttime (HBO, Cinemax, Starz, other adult channels) groups of channels. It works pretty well when good management and reporting is implemented.

Most people and most techs have no idea the channels they're looking at are SDV when it's done right.
--
Two is one, one is none. If it's important, back it up... Somethimes 99.999% availability isn't even good enough.

BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH
Ok, that's a technicality. Why do you need SDV for sports? Just put them on and off at the head-end, and if they're off, they're just not tunable at that point in time. SDV is only really useful for channels that are always broadcasting, but aren't often watched.


DrDrew
That others may surf
Premium
join:2009-01-28
SoCal
kudos:17

4 edits
Putting them on and off means constantly pushing out channel maps to the boxes or the boxes generate errors which generate trouble calls. Neither case is good for the cable operator or thier customers.

Often it also means reconfiguring large amounts of equipment across multiple sites and pushing it out to a large area.

It's prone to mistakes and doesn't really net the operator anything but problems and a scheduling nightmare.

You don't need SDV for sports. SDV is just a good way to handle bandwidth shortages at the edge by switching channels that aren't watched full time by a large number of users. It allows the operator to use that channel space on a dynamic basis for other channels customers may want to watch. It automates and manages all that on off switching you're suggesting on a much finer scale to the point where it's seamless for the vast majority of users.

Comcast chose to drop analog and was required to push DTAs or cable boxes to all of it's customers. Other providers decided to keep analog and use SDV like Charter, Cox, and TWC. While others did neither and are short on bandwidth... cough, FIOS, cough...

The ironic thing is that Comcast is a driving force pushing the industry to develop the equipment that makes SDV possible, high density edge QAMs and modular DOCSIS 3, through it's CMAP now CCAP standards and designs. Soon the only thing Comcast sites will be missing is the SDV manager server, but a similar server will pop up when their CCAP sites start switching DOCSIS and video channels on demand... so SDV in another form.


FifthE1ement
Tech Nut

join:2005-03-16
Fort Lauderdale, FL

1 edit
reply to Streetlight
said by Streetlight:

said by GTFan:

said by andyross:

It may not cost the end-user, but it costs Comcast a ton of money. Just like any business, they want to milk all equipment for as long as possible. Hell, they still give out those ancient DCT-2000 series boxes!!

Just imagine how many DCT and DCH series boxes are out there, and SA equivalents.

Yeah I'm pretty sure they did the math and found out it's a whole lot cheaper to give people DTAs for 2 years and clear all that analog space (and then start charging for them to recoup the expense), than it was to spend a ton of money upgrading full STBs and DVRs.

I don't think they have a lot of channel bandwidth pressures now (at least on 850mhz systems), because they're not adding much new HD anymore.

What I and a lot of other folks have commented on in these forums is the CC has been removing premium HD channels and adding channels that have advertising. For instance, according to a flyer in our recent bill, The only Starz HD channel we have is Starz HD, but six Starz SD channels, four HBO HD channels but eight HBO SD channels, one Cinemax HD channel but nine Cinemax SD channels, one Showtime HD channel but six Showtime SD channels. We used to have most of the premium channels in HD. Not anymore. The excuse given by Comcast is that the stuff that's shown on the premium SD channels can be found as HD in On Demand. This is clearly a profit opportunity for them. They get fees from the new channels with advertising and the opportunity to sell single views of HD premium content to folks not subscribing to the premium channels. They also get the same or higher fees for those subscribing to the premium channels without providing them in HD as linear channels.

And what sucks worse is we are paying a fortune for the premiums and the excuse that the channels shows can be found on OnDemand which is BS. Someone compared the shows on the real channels versus what is available OnDemand and only approximately one quarter of the content could be found on Comcast OnDemand. So you are basically losing 3/4 of the shows you are already paying for! Not to mention OnDemand's quality is horrid compared to the real channels. Take almost any real channel and compare the picture quality of the OnDemand version and there is no comparison as the real channel looks a million times better. And what makes it even worse is that Comcast is blocking services such as HBO Go and other premiums on certain devices such as Samsung and other smart TVs and Roku devices. I wish I had a viable alternative to Comcast!

Also the DTA think is a complete rip off and it drives me nuts! Comcast called and offered me two DTA's for my home, I told the guy I didn't want or need them and he said to take them as you never know when you might need to setup a temp TV and either way they are both FREE so why not! Well I agreed and recently they started charging $2 a month per box! I called for them to come get them and they won't as I have to bring it to them and I just don't have the time. They are scammers as someone implied before.

My RNG boxes (and everyone I know even miles away from my house) that have those boxes always have issues with the screen auto zooming and OnDemand always giving the please pull the plug issue. Most don't know what to do or are afraid to unplug in fear it will do something worse to their TV's or other hardware. They are a pain and OnDemand never works right!

Do any of you think the DCX3400's will ever get an upgrade to the newer guides like the X1 or fabled X2? Someone said only the RNG boxes?

I don't want SDV if it's going to be anything like OnDemand's picture quality. Comcast's high definition in general is pretty bad in terms of PQ. Comparing a Blu-ray in 720p to the same movie on HBO (or pretty much ANY movie) you finally see how bad Comcast's PQ is. A 720p Blu-ray shouldn't be a million times better than 1080i HBO channel (or any HD but it seems the premium channels have a better PQ then other HD's such as G4TV, ETC).

Thanks,

5th
--
"The relationship between what we see and what we know is never settled..."


Mike Wolf

join:2009-05-24
Beachwood, NJ
kudos:4
reply to Mike Wolf
Came across some info on the TiVo Premieres. Found it to be an interesting read. »mysite.verizon.net/~fiosdvr/prem···w_01.pdf

BiggA

join:2005-11-23
EARTH
reply to DrDrew
FIOS went all-digital a number of years back, so I don't know what you're talking about. They were years ahead of Comcast.

Why would you need to re-map channels? Just leave them mapped all the time, and pull the stream out from behind them...

Analog and SDV is an idiotic combination when analog is clearly from the past. Getting rid of analog is the FIRST thing every cable provider should do, THEN MPEG-4, and finally, if they're still short on bandwidth, SDV.

What is Comcast driving the equipment development for VOD? They seem to love VOD WAY too much.

Why is Comcast trying to kludge their way around the simple solution of going MPEG-4?

I found out that my local Comcast system is 650mhz and that's why we're missing so many HDs... man I hope the other cable company gets their ass in gear and dumps analog, and gets faster internet speeds, as when they do, they can just wipe out Comcast.


Mike Wolf

join:2009-05-24
Beachwood, NJ
kudos:4
I don't think Comcast would ever get wiped out by another cable provider. They are too big and powerful. I wish Comcast would just lead the industry in technology and services and move everything to MPEG4 and be done with it.

I do wonder if the picture quality of MPEG4 is truly that much more amazing then MPEG2. Is it really that noticeable?


DrDrew
That others may surf
Premium
join:2009-01-28
SoCal
kudos:17
reply to BiggA
said by BiggA:

FIOS went all-digital a number of years back, so I don't know what you're talking about. They were years ahead of Comcast.

Sorry got a bit mixed up in my description. You're right that FIOS went all digital years ago, but FIOS is pretty much out of video bandwidth due to the way it handles distribution of local and ad insertion feeds. They're slowly going MPEG4, but even though they're several years later into the digital video arena than Comcast they also have a large mass of MPEG2 only equipment they need to replace. They were rumored to be going IPTV but that's run into lots of delays for all the video providers.
said by BiggA:

Why would you need to re-map channels? Just leave them mapped all the time, and pull the stream out from behind them...

If you just pull the video stream, you leave the QAM slot in place. That generates errors on the boxes and edge QAMs. To pull the QAM you have to turn it off at the Edge QAM. To put another channel in it's place you'd have to reconfigure the Edge QAM. If the provider is inserting ads and/or stat muxing the channels so 3 HDs or 10 SDs fit nicely in the available bandwidth, then even more has to be done.

Either way, it's a REAL UGLY way to switch channels to save bandwidth especially if it's done frequently, since "just pulling the stream" doesn't really work.

said by BiggA:

Analog and SDV is an idiotic combination when analog is clearly from the past. Getting rid of analog is the FIRST thing every cable provider should do, THEN MPEG-4, and finally, if they're still short on bandwidth, SDV.

Lots of cable customers still use analog. Getting rid of it drives TONS of complaints and more than a little churn. It also drives providers to boxes purchases, which in todays market of massive guide changes and the requirements to run the new guides, isn't cheap or quick. Also SDV can still run on DCT boxes without a problem unlike MPEG4 or channels above 860 Mhz, which is why OTHER providers have embraced SDV.
said by BiggA:

What is Comcast driving the equipment development for VOD? They seem to love VOD WAY too much.

I didn't say anything about VOD, but it's getting dragged along too since it's generated by the Edge QAM type equipment, same as normal linear QAMs, SDV QAMs, and soon to be DOCSIS QAMs. The backend is very different though.
said by BiggA:

Why is Comcast trying to kludge their way around the simple solution of going MPEG-4?

MPEG4 requires all DCT, DCH, and many CableCARD devices to be replaced along with various pieces of headend gear. Again, not cheap or quick and messing with the usefulness of CableCARD devices usually draws out FCC actions.

The huge installed base of MPEG2 only gear is the main reason why MPEG4 is so slow in being deployed.
--
Two is one, one is none. If it's important, back it up... Somethimes 99.999% availability isn't even good enough.