Video quality in a Comcast post-migration world

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Video quality in a Comcast post-migration world


Post by webminster » Sat May 20, 2017 5:04 pm

So, since Comcast has converted my market to "Enhanced HD" several months ago, obviously the video quality has been degraded visibly. I do have a TiVo Bolt+ as well, and (at least subjectively) the video quality on the 720p channels is a bit more palatable on the Bolt (looks sharper and better defined). Just seems the Bolt is able to make a little better out of Comcast's signal than WMC can.

The WMC is running a EVGA GTX 750 card, both it and the Tivo plugged into same HDMI input on the LG OLED (through an Oppo switch). The Bolt and WMC are both set to 1080p output. The Blu Ray library rips still look good on the WMC, so am just wondering about how WMC handles the decode and upscale on these Comcast 720p channels.

Obviously both the Bolt and WMC have a crap signal to work with, but I keep wondering if it's more that WMC just doesn't do as good a decode on MPEG4 signals as the Bolt, or the upscale to 1080p is a little better on the Bolt. And in the case of WMC, what is actually /doing/ the upscale, the GPU or WMC? If the GPU, is there a card that would upscale better?

Or is it just the Bolt has some "magic" happening, to somehow make the Comcast signal look a little sharper, and WMC is just showing how bad it really is? Since I'm moving more toward the Bolt and Minis, I'm using the WMC for less TV and more movie library stuff, but can't stop wondering if some way to regain its previous glory.


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Post by adam1991 » Sat May 20, 2017 6:25 pm

"enhanced HD", huh. Corporate newspeak. "It's different, therefore we'll say it's better and hold on to that talk track."


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Post by dkm » Mon May 22, 2017 2:10 pm

My guess is that the Tivo can do more post processing on all content, including encrypted content than the WMC client can simply because it's actually had development done on it in the last 5 years.

In my area, even after the conversion to H264, I still have the majority of my channels come across as unprotected. I use an external player with madVR and the LAV codec, which cleans up the image quite a bit compared to watching the same episode within WMC itself. If Tivo can use similar proprietary enhancements, that would easily explain the difference. You may be able to play around with what WMC uses from within the Shark007 codecs, but because I do have a couple (premium) channels that are encrypted, it isn't an error free integrated solution.

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