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HD Programming
mike912
Newbie

Hello,

I recently switched over to Fios Triple Play from Comcast and everything is working well, but I'm noticing some differences in the HD programming.

Let me explain. My daughter likes to watch the Disney Channel. With my Prime HD package, we get Disney HD and the SD Disney channel. What I'm noticing is that some programs that come on on the HD channel are coming through as SD. I know it's an SD signal because the picture is "soft" and if I flip over to the SD channel the picture is the exact same.I also get the black bars on the sides. This is how I know it's not in HD.

This seems to be happening to a few shows on Disney HD but not all. I know this is happening for the Hannah Montana and Wizards of Waverly Place, but not all the time.

To make it even stranger, when the commercials come on, it's in HD. The commercials for upcoming episodes of the show I'm watching are in HD. But then when the show comes on, it's back to SD.

Now, I know these shows are available in HD because when I was with Comcast, if I was on an HD channel, it was in HD. The guide also says that the show is supposed to be in HD too.

So far, I've only noticed this on the channels that my daughter watches, Disney HD, Nick HD, and I also experienced this on Sunday watching Amazing race on CBS.

I know there is the option to change the aspect, but that's not what I'm looking for. Changing the aspect only stretches the picture and makes it even worse than SD.

Has anyone noticed this with their channels? I have Verizon coming to my place on Friday because a tech needs to see it even though there won't be anythign they can do. I'm thinking that whoever their provider is, they are the ones sending down the wrong show format to these channels. Seems like a waste of time to send someone out when they just need to look into the programming.

Thanks,

Mike

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Re: HD Programming
matcarl
Master - Level 1

The guide always says HD for an HD channel, it doesn't go by program. The fact that some commercials are in HD proves everything is working right and you are not getting the SD feed. The shows with the black bars are older ones not shot in HD. 

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Re: HD Programming
mike912
Newbie

That's what I started thinking, but I never experienced this when I was with Comcast. Furthermore, how do you explain that Amazing Race this past Sunday was in SD on the HD channel? The previews for Amazing Race were in HD!

Mike

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Re: HD Programming
cxg331
Contributor - Level 1

I think the above explanation regarding old episodes is accurate, although I don't watch the Disney channel, so I couldn't tell you for sure.

Amazing Race is not shot in HD.  It is one of the holdouts amongst reality shows.  Their official explanation is that they are constantly on the go, and they often rely on foriegn film crews in remote locations.  Such makes it difficult ensure that the show is always shot in HD, and lugging around HD equipment is supposedly tougher than SD equipment.  Now, whether or not that is some **bleep** from CBS is anyone's guess.  The host of the show has said that he wants it shot in HD, but has yet to get his way.

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Re: HD Programming
mike912
Newbie

Thanks for the replies but I'm not convinced. I still think that the incorrect signal/picture is being sent to the HD channels for certain shows, and not because it was recorded in SD.

I looked up on TVGuide.com the channel line ups for NICKHD and Disney HD and they have the same channel line up. What I'm going to do is call a friend that has Comcast and confirm that it is in fact in HD. However, I know it is in HD because I just switched last Thursday to Fios and I know that these shows were always in HD.

The other thing I'm going to do, is that I noticed that earlier in the day there was one particular show my daughter was watching that wasn't in HD and is playing again later tonight. I'm going to check if the later one is in HD.

I'll post back the results sometime tomorrow, but I think in the meantime, I'm going to keep my scheduled tech appointment this Friday, but I don't think they will be able to do anything from my home. It's something going on at Verizon in my opinion.

Mike

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Re: HD Programming
ekem015
Specialist - Level 1

mike9, Verizon isn't doing anything with the signal. Basically, they can't. They're not downconverting HD programs to SD. Your complaint is probably better suited to the network; they provide the signal to Verizon, who just passes it along.

Like matcarl said, the fact that the commercials are in HD on the HD channel proves that it's working correctly; if Verizon was downconverting the channel, then the HD commercials would be in letterboxed SD. And they aren't, so that proves the signal being sent to the TV is 1080i. And Verizon is certainly not downconverting the program itself, in-between the commercials. They don't do that and like I said, they really can't do that technically.

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Re: HD Programming
mike912
Newbie

But it doesn't explain the fact that these channels and programs were always in HD when I was with Comcast. Anyways, like I said, I'm going to double check it, and let you know the results. I have a feeling many people don't realize that they should be getting HD channels when they aren't.

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Re: HD Programming
ekem015
Specialist - Level 1

You're right, it doesn't. I would double check with a Comcast subscriber there and get back to us. But I'm very confident it's not something Verizon can/would do.

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Re: HD Programming
lasagna
Super User
Super User

I think you are  wrong ... HD comes in HD and SD comes in SD unless the source provider is only providing the feed in SD.  Verizon passes the signal thru how the provider sends it into their system, while others may choose to re-render the channel and push it out in an HD resolution (it's still and SD resolution image in an HD resolution rate -- which does nothing to improve or degrade the picture).   You can't "create" what isn't there in the first place.   Keep in mind that Verizon provides both the SD and HD versions of channels, so make sure you are tuning in the correct one.

What is more likely the case is that you are confusing SD override features with HD resolution.  Try changing the Menu -> Settings -> Video Settings -> Video Format and SD override values to see if your STB behavior changes to what you expected to happen.

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Re: HD Programming
mike912
Newbie

Well I've confirmed it. During an episode of Hannah Montana and Wizards of Waverly place on the Disney HD channel, I called a friend with Comcast and they told me that on their Disney HD channel, those 2 shows were being showed on their tv in HD WS format. On Fios, it was being shown in SD format with the black bars on the side.

Unfortunately, noone believes me and it's really getting frustrating. It doesn't happen with every show, only a few and usually between 3:30-5:30pm EST. Yes, you can argue that the shows playing during this time wasn't made in HD, but they have been because on the Comcast network, it's being shown in HD WS format.

The other thing I've noticed is that when these shows come on, I see "Now avaible in HD" logo on the bottom left. This logo doesn't ever show up (I haven't notcied at least) when it is showing a show in HD WS format.

I don't use the SD override feature becasue all it does is stretch the picture making it even worse!

A tech came out to my home on Friday, but showed up 3 hours before the time I had requested, so they didn't get to see it. All I was able to do was explain it to him and said he would check with a few people and get back to me. I don't think anything will come of it, because he didn't actually get to see the problem, but you never know.

Mike

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