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Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p

Regular Contributor

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p

Switching the output to 1080i won't make the 720p source picture look any better. If anything it will make it look worse.
Expert

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p

For those who live in metro areas, the best alternative for now is to use an amplified antenna to view your local over the air channels that transmit in 1080i (PBS, CBS, NBC, CW, etc.). Your picture will be much better for large screen televisions. Both 1080p HD and the newer Ultra High definition television.

 

For a true ultra high definition signal "You Tube" 4k and 8K offerings are free, and spectacular. Upscaling of 1080i MPEG2 signals is superior to the current state of Comcast using MPEG4.

Hopefully; Comcast will eventually correct the problem as they move forward with MPEG4. Right now they are going at a turtle's pace. Use the apps built into your smart tv's recommend apps for You Tube and others.


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Expert

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p

I just noticed this afternoon that the "Weather channel" which I believe is part of NBC is also still (1920 x 1080)/60i in MPEG2. So NBC channel, NBCsn, and Weather Channel are currently still 1080i MPEG2. My display shows output when clicking source icon and clicking ok (select button).

 

That tells me that although they are part of Comcast family, they are not going along with Comcast's current method of conversion to MPEG4. Anyone wondering how I identify a MPEG4 channel versus MPEG2. As you switch channels (at least on a UHD television) there is a approximate 6 second delay when going between a MPEG2 to MPEG4 channel or the reverse. You will see the usual channel info. overlay but no picture (about 2 seconds) and a black screen (about 4 seconds). Delay caused by television's conversion between MPEG2 and MPEG4.


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Regular Contributor

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p

Any channel that doesn't have a nation-wide feed isn't being converted. That includes local broadcast stations and The Weather Channel since it is regional.
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Expert

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p

Once again, I am watching the Vikings football game tonight over the air versus using my Comcast cable.

 

The picture was totally unacceptable with the score overlays being hard to read versus the sharp picture coming over the air in 1080i from NBC. I am able to quickly switch back and forth for OTA to cable for comparison of the picture. This has to be bad for those who do not have the luxury to receive the local channels both ways.

 

I would think NBC should be very upset with the  way their parent company, Comcast, is messing up their broadcast using their current method of outputting the signal over cable.

 


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Regular Contributor

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p


MNtundraRET wrote:

I would think NBC should be very upset with the  way their parent company, Comcast, is messing up their broadcast using their current method of outputting the signal over cable.


All they care about is that you watch their network and see the commercials.  They don't care about anything else, believe me.

Expert

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p


@MNtundraRET wrote:

Once again, I am watching the Vikings football game tonight over the air versus using my Comcast cable.

 

The picture was totally unacceptable with the score overlays being hard to read versus the sharp picture coming over the air in 1080i from NBC. I am able to quickly switch back and forth for OTA to cable for comparison of the picture. This has to be bad for those who do not have the luxury to receive the local channels both ways.

 

I would think NBC should be very upset with the  way their parent company, Comcast, is messing up their broadcast using their current method of outputting the signal over cable.


Comcast usually gets your must-carry local channels via fiber and it is put out over QAM256 (assuming set top box) to you and kept in the same mpeg2 1080i format. Comcast's conversion is for cable channels not local channels.



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Official Employee

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p

I just noticed this afternoon that the "Weather channel" which I believe is part of NBC is also still (1920 x 1080)/60i in MPEG2. So NBC channel, NBCsn, and Weather Channel are currently still 1080i MPEG2. My display shows output when clicking source icon and clicking ok (select button).

 

That tells me that although they are part of Comcast family, they are not going along with Comcast's current method of conversion to MPEG4. Anyone wondering how I identify a MPEG4 channel versus MPEG2. As you switch channels (at least on a UHD television) there is a approximate 6 second delay when going between a MPEG2 to MPEG4 channel or the reverse. You will see the usual channel info. overlay but no picture (about 2 seconds) and a black screen (about 4 seconds). Delay caused by television's conversion between MPEG2 and MPEG4.

 

There are still parts of the country and stations that haven't concerted to MPEG4. It looks like MPEG4 is rolling out throughout the month of September and I would expect a full roll out by October. 

 


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Contributor

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p

Having both DirecTv and Xfinity (dont ask, it was cheaper than high speed internet from Comcast and DirecTv for the channels I get)...  On those channels I receive on both such as CNN and MSNBC, the difference is SO noticable on my 55" 4K TV, even using a $800 video processing box on the Tivo Bolt hooked to cable.    Now of course, I dont need to see talking heads in 1920 pixels vs 1280 pixels, and recording in 720p saves a lot of disc space, but when the two year special ends, and I have to pay full price for one or the other, I am sure going to pick the 1920 (and some 4K) provider over the bitstarved 720p provider.

 

If by then they switch to IPTV at 1080p or 4K, well then that might be different.   Right now though, Xfinity is really mushy looking, with the processor on pass thru, and a little better with the processor.  DirecTv is the winner by far though.

 

Regular Contributor

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p


@Davenlr wrote:

Having both DirecTv and Xfinity (dont ask, it was cheaper than high speed internet from Comcast and DirecTv for the channels I get)...  On those channels I receive on both such as CNN and MSNBC, the difference is SO noticable on my 55" 4K TV, even using a $800 video processing box on the Tivo Bolt hooked to cable.    Now of course, I dont need to see talking heads in 1920 pixels vs 1280 pixels, and recording in 720p saves a lot of disc space, but when the two year special ends, and I have to pay full price for one or the other, I am sure going to pick the 1920 (and some 4K) provider over the bitstarved 720p provider.

 

If by then they switch to IPTV at 1080p or 4K, well then that might be different.   Right now though, Xfinity is really mushy looking, with the processor on pass thru, and a little better with the processor.  DirecTv is the winner by far though.

 


I had the same thing for a week as I switched. I would agree, with all things the same - input, cables, settings, etc - the difference is night and day. Just watching a movie/show via HBO on Comcast vs HBO via HBO Go on AppleTV is night and day.  At times, the HD picture on Comcast looks the same as a DVD run through my Oppo Blu-ray player.

 

I agree, I hope the IPTV thing comes quick. Luckly I can watch most my stuff via apps on my AppleTV and for some reason the sports channels - NBC Sports, Comcast Sportsnet Chicago, etc all still have a decent picture.

New Poster

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p

I didn't know this is what I was signing up for. I had assumed I'd be getting 1080i for 1080i channels.

 

The visual quality difference from directv is really noticeable and not something I find acceptable.

Regular Contributor

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p


@charissamz wrote:

@Davenlr wrote:

Having both DirecTv and Xfinity (dont ask, it was cheaper than high speed internet from Comcast and DirecTv for the channels I get)...  On those channels I receive on both such as CNN and MSNBC, the difference is SO noticable on my 55" 4K TV, even using a $800 video processing box on the Tivo Bolt hooked to cable.    Now of course, I dont need to see talking heads in 1920 pixels vs 1280 pixels, and recording in 720p saves a lot of disc space, but when the two year special ends, and I have to pay full price for one or the other, I am sure going to pick the 1920 (and some 4K) provider over the bitstarved 720p provider.

 

If by then they switch to IPTV at 1080p or 4K, well then that might be different.   Right now though, Xfinity is really mushy looking, with the processor on pass thru, and a little better with the processor.  DirecTv is the winner by far though.

 


I had the same thing for a week as I switched. I would agree, with all things the same - input, cables, settings, etc - the difference is night and day. Just watching a movie/show via HBO on Comcast vs HBO via HBO Go on AppleTV is night and day.  At times, the HD picture on Comcast looks the same as a DVD run through my Oppo Blu-ray player.

 

I agree, I hope the IPTV thing comes quick. Luckly I can watch most my stuff via apps on my AppleTV and for some reason the sports channels - NBC Sports, Comcast Sportsnet Chicago, etc all still have a decent picture.


 

Yep, picture quality for the same programming on Apple TV (HBO Go, etc.) blows the Comcast PQ away.  It's unfortunate that we pay so much money and have such bad PQ.  Larger TVs have become more and more popular/prevalent/affordable over the years while Comcast PQ has gotten worse.  I'm sure that their PQ would have looked fine when I had my first 42" HDTV, but not on a 65" screen - that's for sure.

Regular Contributor

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p

I noticed the diminished quality many months ago. For all cable and premium channels (not local), there has been a huge degrade in picture quality. This is what I past of what I posted over five months ago:

 

In the last few weeks, I have noticed that with my HD boxes using an HDMI cable (I don't do X1), the HD picture now looks like the SD used to look, and the SD looks like I am using RCA cables. The HD sharpness I used to have is gone.

 

I feel like I pay for HD and only get SD now. I have read about 1080 channels being intentionally downgraded to 720, but what I am watching is not even 720 quality (compared to anything 720 on my PS3). And there are a lot of channels that only have SD feeds - like most of the premium channels in my area. It is getting harder to watch these movie channels beause the quality is less than 480 SD now.
--------------

Very frustrating.

 
 
Regular Contributor

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p

Can you please post a link to the article you read that claims that 720p is a downgrade from 1080i?
I'd be really interested in reading that article.
What you are describing doesn't really even sound like that.
Are you actually sure that every single Channel you are receiving is only being output from your cable box at 720P?
There is likely a setting on your cable box that would output only 720P. There's also a setting that would let it switch depending upon what the channel was doing.
- KP
Regular Contributor

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p


@kpeters59 wrote:
Can you please post a link to the article you read that claims that 720p is a downgrade from 1080i?
I'd be really interested in reading that article.
What you are describing doesn't really even sound like that.
Are you actually sure that every single Channel you are receiving is only being output from your cable box at 720P?
There is likely a setting on your cable box that would output only 720P. There's also a setting that would let it switch depending upon what the channel was doing.
- KP

 

Comcast is compressing the heck out of their feed.  Forget about 720p vs. 1080i.  The bottom line is, the picture quality now looks HORRIBLE.  As soon as Hulu Live TV or DirecTV Now offers local channels in my area, I'm leaving Comcast.  Both of those services have MUCH, MUCH better PQ than Comcast currently does (I've done free trials with both, but ultimately did not keep either of them due to lack of local channels in my market).  

 

Also, watching the exact same programming on HBO Go on my Apple TV vs. through my Comcast X1 box is a NIGHT AND DAY difference in PQ - with the HBO Go streaming app winning by a landslide.  Perhaps on a 30-40" display Comcast would look fine.  Certainly not on a 65" display though.

Regular Contributor

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p


@jkozlow3 wrote:

@kpeters59 wrote:
Can you please post a link to the article you read that claims that 720p is a downgrade from 1080i?
I'd be really interested in reading that article.
What you are describing doesn't really even sound like that.
Are you actually sure that every single Channel you are receiving is only being output from your cable box at 720P?
There is likely a setting on your cable box that would output only 720P. There's also a setting that would let it switch depending upon what the channel was doing.
- KP

 

Comcast is compressing the heck out of their feed.  Forget about 720p vs. 1080i.  The bottom line is, the picture quality now looks HORRIBLE.  As soon as Hulu Live TV or DirecTV Now offers local channels in my area, I'm leaving Comcast.  Both of those services have MUCH, MUCH better PQ than Comcast currently does (I've done free trials with both, but ultimately did not keep either of them due to lack of local channels in my market).  

 

Also, watching the exact same programming on HBO Go on my Apple TV vs. through my Comcast X1 box is a NIGHT AND DAY difference in PQ - with the HBO Go streaming app winning by a landslide.  Perhaps on a 30-40" display Comcast would look fine.  Certainly not on a 65" display though.


This, though even without compression it would still be a downgrade.

 

Comcast did two things recently.  They switched all non-local channels to MPEG-4 (H.264) and converted all non-local channels to 720p.   Switching to MPEG-4 is a good thing as it uses on average about half the bandwidth as MPEG-2, which is what they were using.  That means Comcast could offer the double the number of channels in the same amount of space without making any other changes.  Switching to H.265 would be even better, but many cable boxes don't support that.

 

The conversion to 720p requires more of an explanation. 1080i is made up of two 1920x540 images that alternate 30 times a second to effectively create a 1920x1080 resolution picture that refreshes 30 times a second.  That gives a resolution of 2,073600 pixels with a bandwidth of 62,208,000 pixels/sec.  720p is made up of a single 1280x720 image that refreshes 60 times a second.  That's a resolution of 921600 pixels with a bandwidth of 55,296,000 pixels/sec.  Converting from 1080i to 720p without doing anything else decrease the pixel count by 55.6% (around half the resolution) while only decreasing the bandwidth by about 11%.  Basically 1/2 the quality for a 10% bandwidth saving, which isn't really worth it. 

 

Comcast further increased the bandwidth savings by highly compressing the 720p signals.  Normally this would cause all kind of compression artifacts like blocking, picture break ups, etc.  What Comcast appears to have done to prevent that from happening is apply a bluring filter into the compression process. This greatly cuts down on the number of compression artifacts that are seen, but also greatly degrades the pictures quality, especially for scenes with alot of motion. 

 

All in all Comcast freed up a large amount of bandwidth, which they used to offer Gigabit Internet (which I feel is overkill at the moment).  Presumably at some point Comcast will dump traditional cable TV entirely and switch over to IPTV.  Once they do so they can then increase the picture quality without impacting bandwidth.  Who knows if they will do that or not, but considering streaming YouTube videos now have better quality than Comcast's TV channels, I can't see them not doing so.  The downside to switching to IPTV is that it will only work for the X1 platform (and Roku) as of now.

Regular Contributor

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p


 Perhaps on a 30-40" display Comcast would look fine.  Certainly not on a 65" display though.

Correct .... PQ continues to look fine on the smaller HDTVs .... I am still using an 11-year-old high quality 32" Panny Viera that is 720p with non-X1 equipment (an DCX3400M DVR AnyRoom with a DCX3200 Terminal unit for the kitchen HDTV) which allow for native resolution pass-thru settings and eSATA connected Extender Hard drives up to 2TB on the DCX3400M.

 

When the change to 720p output for all but the locals happenned, we did not notice any PQ change as it continued to look as great as it did with Comcast back in 2006 using MPEG2.  Was it not for these forums, I would not have even known about the MPEG2 to MPEG4 conversion except for the fact that I noticed my buffers on many channels started holding 2 to 3 times more programming.

 

Our smaller 24" and newer 1080p Smart TV in the kitchen still looks fine using using native-pass through via the non-X1 DCX3200 after the 720p output change and MPEG2 to MPEG4 converions occured (primarily thanks to the small screen size).

 

Smaller size apparently does really matter during these current and upcoming transitional years (at least for HDTV content viewing). 

 

So we're holding off buying that big 65" or 75" 4K UHD big screen for now, and getting a couple of small high quality mobile wireless 10" Tablets instead.

Regular Contributor

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p


@eecon1 wrote:

 Perhaps on a 30-40" display Comcast would look fine.  Certainly not on a 65" display though.

Correct .... PQ continues to look fine on the smaller HDTVs .... I am still using an 11-year-old high quality 32" Panny Viera that is 720p with non-X1 equipment (an DCX3400M DVR AnyRoom with a DCX3200 Terminal unit for the kitchen HDTV) which allow for native resolution pass-thru settings and eSATA connected Extender Hard drives up to 2TB on the DCX3400M.

 

When the change to 720p output for all but the locals happenned, we did not notice any PQ change as it continued to look as great as it did with Comcast back in 2006 using MPEG2.  Was it not for these forums, I would not have even known about the MPEG2 to MPEG4 conversion except for the fact that I noticed my buffers on many channels started holding 2 to 3 times more programming.

 

Our smaller 24" and newer 1080p Smart TV in the kitchen still looks fine using using native-pass through via the non-X1 DCX3200 after the 720p output change and MPEG2 to MPEG4 converions occured (primarily thanks to the small screen size).

 

Smaller size apparently does really matter during these current and upcoming transitional years (at least for HDTV content viewing). 

 

So we're holding off buying that big 65" or 75" 4K UHD big screen for now, and getting a couple of small high quality mobile wireless 10" Tablets instead.


There is Black Friday deals on the LG 55" OLED for about $1500.

Just think that in 2001 the 36" Panasonic Tau 1080i Tube HDTV that I purcahsed was $2200, and a couple years ago I got a (closeout/new) 43" Samsung 768p Plasma for $300.

I continue to use HDMI native res "pass through" with it, so that 480i, 720p, 1080i is sent as-is (non-converted) to the Plasma, and it all looks really good. Even though non-local 1080i HD channels are converted at the nearby Comcast plant to 720p, it hasn't made a big difference visualy. At least the local (network) 1080i stations have remained 1080i for now.

Regular Contributor

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p

Comcast's downgrade (but no price decrease to customers ) from 1080i to 720p is no doubt why when I switch HD channels ---- for example as I just did from 787 (MSNBC) to 759 (CNN) slight dimming is noticeable.  At least on my 42" plasma.  Maybe it's just my TV reacting.

Regular Contributor

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p

Yep, Comcast looks like garbage now.

 

As soon as Hulu Live TV or DirecTV Now offers local channels in my market, I'm leaving Comcast.  Both of those services have MUCH, MUCH better PQ than Comcast currently does (I've done free trials with both, but ultimately did not keep either of them due to lack of local channels in my market).  

 

Also, watching the exact same programming on HBO Go on my Apple TV vs. through my Comcast X1 box is a NIGHT AND DAY difference in PQ on a 65" 1080p display.  Comcast's feed looks positively blurry in comparison.

Regular Contributor

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p

I agree 100%.  Hulu live with Cloud, looks promising for sure.  I will still be forced to buy Comcast Internet for the time being.  Maybe after 28 years same location, I will get rid of my >$240 Comcast Bill.  I remember when I joined cable so I didn' have to watch commercials.  Greed, Greed, Greed

Expert
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Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p

New Poster

Re: Resolution of HBO-HD and other hd channels changed from 1080i to 720p

Everybody knows that 1080i is a better resolution than 720p, no one believes that 720p is an advancement whatsoever, particularly now that 4k televisions are coming out. If you say that the reason for this downgrade in image quality is for a better progressive scan interface why then do you not provide 1080p resolution instead of 720p. This is very annoying and disappointing.
Expert

Re: Resolution of HBO-HD and other hd channels changed from 1080i to 720p


@Ji-garcia wrote:
Everybody knows that 1080i is a better resolution than 720p, no one believes that 720p is an advancement whatsoever, particularly now that 4k televisions are coming out. If you say that the reason for this downgrade in image quality is for a better progressive scan interface why then do you not provide 1080p resolution instead of 720p. This is very annoying and disappointing.

interlace is a dead 'format' for digitizing motion. google "1080i vs 720p" and read a few articles and watch a few videos. 



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New Poster

Re: Resolution of HBO-HD and other hd channels changed from 1080i to 720p

Okay, then why doesn’t Xfinity upgrade to 1080p, blu-ray quality, and forget about the “interlaced” conundrum.
Regular Contributor

Re: Resolution of HBO-HD and other hd channels changed from 1080i to 720p


@Ji-garcia wrote:
Okay, then why doesn’t Xfinity upgrade to 1080p, blu-ray quality, and forget about the “interlaced” conundrum.

Because Comcast doesn't have the free bandwidth to send normally compressed 720p channels, let alone 1080p channels.  Comcast is already heavily compressing the 720p channels to get them to fit which makes them look very poor.  Compressing 1080p channels would be completely unwatchable.

Regular Contributor

Re: Resolution of HBO-HD and other hd channels changed from 1080i to 720p


@Morac2 wrote:

@Ji-garcia wrote:
Okay, then why doesn’t Xfinity upgrade to 1080p, blu-ray quality, and forget about the “interlaced” conundrum.

Because Comcast doesn't have the free bandwidth to send normally compressed 720p channels, let alone 1080p channels.  Comcast is already heavily compressing the 720p channels to get them to fit which makes them look very poor.  Compressing 1080p channels would be completely unwatchable.


 

I would have no issue with 720p if they weren't compressing the feed so much.  It's bad when every internet streaming television service has much better PQ than Comcast (DirecTV Now, Hulu Live TV, HBO Go, etc.).

Official Employee

Re: Resolution of HBO-HD and other hd channels changed from 1080i to 720p

Most of our boxes have a max output resolution of 1080i. Have you tried replacing HDMI cabling?


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Regular Contributor

Re: Resolution of HBO-HD and other hd channels changed from 1080i to 720p

Comcast Ken - I don't think you get it. Yes, the boxes are capable of 1080, but that doesn't mean the signal being given to them from Comcast is 1080. When I first got HD several years ago, the picture was great - using 1080 boxes on 1080 TVs. It still looks great with my Apple TV and PS3. Then, a couple of years ago, Comcast starting compressing signal to fit in more channels, and my 1080 picture started to look more and more like a 480 (not even 720), while the SD channels started to look worse than 480. This is on multiple HD boxes and HD TVs and while using a Comcast-supplied amplifer. OnDemand HD programs are better, but still not as good as using a different service, or even OTA antenna and coax. I miss the high-quality picture I used to get - it was almost too sharp, and I would adjust my TV to accomodate (and avoid the soap opera effect). Now, it can't get sharp enough.

Also - if they are going to compress channels, why don't they include the expensive ones we pay extra for? I want all of my premium channels to be in HD, like they are in other states. Then, at least those expensive channels will air in 480.

Regular Contributor

Re: Resolution of HBO-HD and other hd channels changed from 1080i to 720p


@sbwinter2 wrote:

Comcast Ken - I don't think you get it. Yes, the boxes are capable of 1080, but that doens't mean the signal being given to them from Comcast is 1080. When I first got HD several years ago, the picture was great - using 1080 boxes on 1080 TVs. It still looks great with my Apple TV and PS3. Then, a couple of years ago, Comcast starting compressing signal to fit in more channels, and my 1080 picture started to look more and more like a 480 (not even 720), while the SD channels started to look worse than 480. This is on multiple HD boxes and HD TVs and while using a Comcast-supplied amplifer. OnDemand HD programs are better, but still not as good as using a different service, or even OTA antenna and coax. I miss the high-quality picture I used to get - it was almost too sharp, and I would adjust my TV to accomodate (and avoid the soap opera effect). Now, it can't get sharp enough.

Also - if they are going to compress channels, why don't they include the expensive ones we pay extra for? I want all of my premium channels to be in HD, like they are in other states. Then, at least those expensive channels will air in 480.


Agree with all of this.  Picture Quality is MUCH softer & less sharp than it used to be a couple of years ago.  The exact same live TV programming on internet services such as Hulu Live TV, DirecTV Now, etc. has a much sharper and higher resolution picture quality.  If you have an Apple TV or Roku, sign up for a free trial of one of these services and you can flip back and forth and compare the picture quality to Comcast on the exact same programming.  There is no contest.

 

It's sad that Comcast employees don't even understand this.

Official Employee

Re: Resolution of HBO-HD and other hd channels changed from 1080i to 720p

Comcast Ken - I don't think you get it. Yes, the boxes are capable of 1080, but that doesn't mean the signal being given to them from Comcast is 1080. When I first got HD several years ago, the picture was great - using 1080 boxes on 1080 TVs. It still looks great with my Apple TV and PS3. Then, a couple of years ago, Comcast starting compressing signal to fit in more channels, and my 1080 picture started to look more and more like a 480 (not even 720), while the SD channels started to look worse than 480. This is on multiple HD boxes and HD TVs and while using a Comcast-supplied amplifer. OnDemand HD programs are better, but still not as good as using a different service, or even OTA antenna and coax. I miss the high-quality picture I used to get - it was almost too sharp, and I would adjust my TV to accomodate (and avoid the soap opera effect). Now, it can't get sharp enough.

Also - if they are going to compress channels, why don't they include the expensive ones we pay extra for? I want all of my premium channels to be in HD, like they are in other states. Then, at least those expensive channels will air in 480.

If you had 1080i before and the signal itself is broadcasting in lesser reception, then we'd need to take a look at the node or reach out to our network partners to see if there is a larger issue at how the signal is broadcasted at our headend. Shoot me a private message so I can take a look further. 

 

KenF


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Regular Contributor

Re: Resolution of HBO-HD and other hd channels changed from 1080i to 720p


@ComcastKenF wrote:

Comcast Ken - I don't think you get it. Yes, the boxes are capable of 1080, but that doesn't mean the signal being given to them from Comcast is 1080. When I first got HD several years ago, the picture was great - using 1080 boxes on 1080 TVs. It still looks great with my Apple TV and PS3. Then, a couple of years ago, Comcast starting compressing signal to fit in more channels, and my 1080 picture started to look more and more like a 480 (not even 720), while the SD channels started to look worse than 480. This is on multiple HD boxes and HD TVs and while using a Comcast-supplied amplifer. OnDemand HD programs are better, but still not as good as using a different service, or even OTA antenna and coax. I miss the high-quality picture I used to get - it was almost too sharp, and I would adjust my TV to accomodate (and avoid the soap opera effect). Now, it can't get sharp enough.

Also - if they are going to compress channels, why don't they include the expensive ones we pay extra for? I want all of my premium channels to be in HD, like they are in other states. Then, at least those expensive channels will air in 480.

If you had 1080i before and the signal itself is broadcasting in lesser reception, then we'd need to take a look at the node or reach out to our network partners to see if there is a larger issue at how the signal is broadcasted at our headend. Shoot me a private message so I can take a look further. 

 

KenF


There’s no point in anyone sending you a private message, unless you want to get a private message from every Comcast customer.

 

Comcast converts all channels (except local broadcast channels) to 720p at the center that beams out all the channels to all Comcast users, so it affects all Comcast regions that have been switched over to MPEG4 (which should be close to everywhere now). 

Contributor

Re: Resolution of HBO-HD and other hd channels changed from 1080i to 720p

Frankly, there really is no reason to continue this thread as the decision has been made and in the grand corporate scheme of things, people like us, those who care about getting the best picture quality possible, are considered outliers and are not considered important enough to worry about. Comcast will only consider changing its policy if they start to see subscribers leaving the service and until that happens, nothing will change, 720p is here to stay.

 

Do what I do, pay for the TV service, as it's rather cheap when bundled with Internet, and I still use it for live sports and just get high quality(1080p/24Hz 7.5 Mb/s AVC) versions of your favorite shows from "alternative" sources. Smiley Wink

 

And ComcastKenF not being aware that his company has down-rezzed all cablenet channels to 720p/60 is a pretty common theme among Comcast employees, one hand not knowing what the other is doing, the lack of intra-company communication is legendary with this company.

Regular Contributor

Re: Resolution of HBO-HD and other hd channels changed from 1080i to 720p

Agree. I have found that most Comcast reps have no idea what is going on most of the time. The business reps are somewhat better than the residential, though. The people who really know what is happening seem to be the techs (mostly third-party) that come to your house. They know why houses are losing service because if energy surges nearby. They know about why some nodes were built incorrectly and have been fixed with band-aids until the whole system blows up. It is too bad we can't call them directly since calling the 800 is mostly a waste of time when there is a real problem.

Contributor

Re: Resolution of HBO-HD and other hd channels changed from 1080i to 720p

Old thread but I just switched from PS Vue to Comcast HD. For me the clarity is much better with Comcast. A couple of reasons I made the change 1) My internet price(promo) was running out and the total cost of Vue + new internet cost was going to be right there with a bundle deal Comcast was offering including taxes fees and all. So with more channels, triple the internet speed....upgrading made sense. 2) recently purchased a 55" 4k tv and I noticed a decline in picture clarity with Vue. With a 43" tv and below there is probably not much differece in the two.

 

Someone earlier said that local channels and the Weather channels were unaffected by Comcast's supposed 1080 to 720 conversion. I compared my local channels via OTA to Comcast HD and they do in fact look the same. One other comparison to PS Vue.....The Golf Channel is much better when viewed in Comcast HD. They all are for that matter. Maybe some of this is due to my environment with a new and larger TV. All I know...... I get very good detail with Comcast. 

 

For now I am happy with my setup. I was a cordcutter for 4 years and it worked well. I have this deal for 2 years so I am set. But when it expires I will have to evaluate what is available at that time as things change. Not only in price but products offered. 

New Poster

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p

Ironic that Comcast is fretting about losing TV customers when over-the-air signals are better quality!

Expert

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p


wrote:

Ironic that Comcast is fretting about losing TV customers when over-the-air signals are better quality!


Comcast does not recode local must-carry broadcast channels. the channels remain in their native format and mpeg2 encoding. the broadcaster's 720p or 1080i is not converted.



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Contributor

Re: Resolution of HBO-HD and other hd channels changed from 1080i to 720p

[quote ComcastKenF]We are moving certain HD channels to 720p60 as we move to MPEG4 delivery.

This is being done in many areas on a rolling schedule across all of our video platforms. (It's not just happening on X1)
.
Channels that initially moved to to 720p60 may vary based on each area and additional channels may be moved to 720p60 later, also on a rolling schedule.

Below is from the referenced thread, but I can certainly include it here for others:

In regards to 720p delivery, some of your HD Channels have transitioned from 1080i to 720p60. As part of our ongoing work to improve and modernize the way we deliver HD channels, we are transitioning all of our HD streams to “progressive” format. We are making this change in conjunction with the transition to MPEG-4. This means that some channels that were delivered in 1080i will now be delivered in 720p60.

The progressive format offers a number of advantages, and is an important component of the transition to IP video delivery.

In addition, the transition to progressive format allows us to offer a uniform HD experience across all devices, apps and screens, ensuring a consistently excellent experience.

The interlaced format reduces the effective resolution of 1080i significantly. Most video delivery is moving toward progressive formats. Many leading HD channels already deliver video in 720p60, and the progressive format renders motion more effectively. Progressive formats are necessary for advanced IP video delivery.

Based on extensive testing and research, we’re confident the combination of MPEG-4 encoding and the progressive format will allow us to deliver superior video performance to our customers.[/quote]



Your quoted statement is such a great example of how backwards Comcast is. Every video service is moving towards 4K while Comcast can’t even move on to 1080p and are instead going backwards to 720p. It’s no wonder so many people are cord cutting and only using services like Netflix, Amazon and Hulu. With companies like Comcast you pay an arm and a leg while they just make things look worse and worse just to squeeze a bit more profit. In 10-20 years when 5g is becoming a bigger thing Comcast is going to be in big trouble, because they’ll no longer be offering a product anybody wants due to poor quality video and data caps. I’m starting to think that just paying full price for the series I watch on Amazon might be cheaper than paying for Comcast TV, and is a night and day difference in picture quality.
Expert

Re: Resolution of HBO-HD and other hd channels changed from 1080i to 720p


@haneybd87 wrote:
<snip>
Your quoted statement is such a great example of how backwards Comcast is. Every video service is moving towards 4K while Comcast can’t even move on to 1080p and are instead going backwards to 720p. It’s no wonder so many people are cord cutting and only using services like Netflix, Amazon and Hulu. With companies like Comcast you pay an arm and a leg while they just make things look worse and worse just to squeeze a bit more profit. In 10-20 years when 5g is becoming a bigger thing Comcast is going to be in big trouble, because they’ll no longer be offering a product anybody wants due to poor quality video and data caps. I’m starting to think that just paying full price for the series I watch on Amazon might be cheaper than paying for Comcast TV, and is a night and day difference in picture quality.

no flat screen uses the interlace analog NTSC format to dispaly a picture. the interlace signal must be deinterlaced (estimated lines that never existed are created in the progressive format). The conversion to progressive only is just moving on in technology as CRTs are left behind. The cable networks only provide to Comcast their signal in progressive format in HVEC (nicknamed Mpeg-5 or mpeg-G) and Comcast recodes into as needed streams and formats.  



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Contributor

Re: Resolution of HBO-HD and other hd channels changed from 1080i to 720p

And yet instead of moving forward to 1080p, which is already obsolete, they’re moving on to a 15 year old resolution in a compressed format that looks as clear as mud while companies like Netflix and Amazon (and to a lesser degree Hulu) offer video quality that’s almost on par with Blu-ray.
Expert

Re: Resolution of HBO-HD and other hd channels changed from 1080i to 720p


@haneybd87 wrote:
And yet instead of moving forward to 1080p, which is already obsolete, they’re moving on to a 15 year old resolution in a compressed format that looks as clear as mud while companies like Netflix and Amazon (and to a lesser degree Hulu) offer video quality that’s almost on par with Blu-ray.

https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/hbo-selects-arris-dsr-7400-transcoder-satellite-receiver-30... HBO has moved on. watch on demand for best HD content.



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Contributor

Re: Resolution of HBO-HD and other hd channels changed from 1080i to 720p

Even that looks poor because of the severe compression.
Regular Contributor

Re: Resolution of HBO-HD and other hd channels changed from 1080i to 720p


@haneybd87 wrote:
Even that looks poor because of the severe compression.

Well you know ...... one can always vote with their wallet by moving to another provider if not satisfied.

 

This old issue has been beaten to death by now.  Thank you from a long time satisfied subscriber.

Contributor

Re: Resolution of HBO-HD and other hd channels changed from 1080i to 720p

I guess I just wish that they would do better, because there are no ideal alternatives. And they could do better, if they chose to make slightly less obscene profits. Would probably be better for them in the long run by retaining customers. I can buy most of the things that I watch on Amazon but there are certain other things that I can’t. The situation Is just no good.
New Poster

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p

Funny that you said that. I just spoke to to a Comcast rep and told her the same thing. Over the air runs circles around comcast as far as HD and they charge you $7.50 for their junk.

Frequent Visitor

Re: Resolution of HBO-HD and other hd channels changed from 1080i to 720p

Before comcast changed there channels in my area (rockwood tn) we had a lot more HD channels. HBO and HBO2 were both hd. HBO 2 and fxx are not hd now. I'm sure there are a lot of others I'm not watching. Why were these changes? Is our bill being reduced to reflect the loss of some of our service? What's the deal with taking away service we have paid for? Upgrade your equipment
New Poster

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p

With the basic TV service it is converted down to SD, while the primary channels off the air are generally 1080i.

Subjectively, the converted signal is lower resolution than the 480i resolution that many of the secondary channels use to broadcast old shows from the analog days.

Expert

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p


@Doninvt wrote:

With the basic TV service it is converted down to SD, while the primary channels off the air are generally 1080i.

Subjectively, the converted signal is lower resolution than the 480i resolution that many of the secondary channels use to broadcast old shows from the analog days.


nothing is 'converted' the cable channels are provided via HEVC (mpeg5 or G) and all video is created from that stream. if you don't pay for HD then for cable channels you get SD 480p but local channels should still be in HD (your experience may vary). If you pay for HD the HD channels are provided in 720p60 while local broadcast are carried n their native format but output per your set top box output setting.



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Regular Contributor

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p

I discovered that my local CW channel is being converted to 720 MPEG-4.  I thought it just was 720p, but found recordings made on an OTA Tivo are 1080i and also around 4 to 5 times as large.  This is the first OTA channel I’m aware of that Comcast is converting.  Other OTA channels are not being converted. 

Regular Visitor

Re: Comcast downgrading all 1080i HD channels to 720p

I can't believe the gaslighting going on in this thread. Bottom line: 720 is reduced resolution compared to 1080, period. Do not be confused people, that's all that matters to the end user: resolution. The right  thing would have been to upgrade the signal to 1080p, not downgrade the signal to 720p. The bottom line is this allows one more channel in their delivery "container" of data, so it turns out to be cost effective, but meanwhile the customer is not given a discount for the downgrade in quality. I find this an egregious violation of customer trust.

If your TV has a 50 inch screen or more, you will really notice the degraded signal, for the same or more monthly charge I might add. 

Save the mumbo-jumbo about interlaced versus progressive for the unwashed masses, because I don't really need to tell those that made this decision that 720 is a degraded signal versus 1080.

Personally, I am hanging by a thread on continuing to be a Comcast customer, but for now I am overruled by the family, but as the breadwinner, my patience is running out.