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X1 Video quality seems poor

Frequent Visitor

X1 Video quality seems poor

Today I received the X1 equipment and installed it, to my dismay, the video quality droped a lot from what I was currently watching.  I disconencted the old comcast box and installed the X1 (resumed watching HBO series "The Young Pope") and the change was not subtle, it is very obvious.  I have gone through all the settings, the box comes @720 and changed it to 1080i to surprisingly not much difference.  The picture looks awfully soft in focus and the dynamic range has dropped.  TV is setup through a Sony AV receiver hooked to the X1, a Blueray player and an Apple TV (which BTW the picture on the BR and ApTV still look as they always did). Looking at HBO through the X1 and switching to HBO Go on th Apple TV the difference is night and day, it used to be the oposite, meaning, the Live HBO through the old comcast box was better than th HBO Go. What gives?  I'm almost ready to return it and go back to the old comcast box, any ideas of what I might be doing wrong? It should've been a simple swap, one box to the other and not an overexpectation to retain the same video quality...

Gold Problem Solver

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

X1 boxes require much better incoming and outgoing signal levels than older legacy boxes.

Assuming your setup is connected properly, if you are experiencing "pixelation" that strongly suggests your signal levels do not meet X1 spec. If your signal levels are within spec, X1's picture quality is just dandy.

You could always have Comcast send a tech out to troubleshoot your situation.



IkerG wrote:

Today I received the X1 equipment and installed it, to my dismay, the video quality droped a lot from what I was currently watching.  I disconencted the old comcast box and installed the X1 (resumed watching HBO series "The Young Pope") and the change was not subtle, it is very obvious.  I have gone through all the settings, the box comes @720 and changed it to 1080i to surprisingly not much difference.  The picture looks awfully soft in focus and the dynamic range has dropped.  TV is setup through a Sony AV receiver hooked to the X1, a Blueray player and an Apple TV (which BTW the picture on the BR and ApTV still look as they always did). Looking at HBO through the X1 and switching to HBO Go on th Apple TV the difference is night and day, it used to be the oposite, meaning, the Live HBO through the old comcast box was better than th HBO Go. What gives?  I'm almost ready to return it and go back to the old comcast box, any ideas of what I might be doing wrong? It should've been a simple swap, one box to the other and not an overexpectation to retain the same video quality...


 

 

Frequent Visitor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

No pixelation, signal doesn't drop, interrupt, in short, no sign of signal level problem.
Thanks for the suggestion.

I understand that is difficult to describe a lose of video quality and for some reason there is no obligation or law for content providers to publish the technical spec on their service, so there is no objective backup for my experience.

It looks fuzzy and soft fucused with way less dynamic range meaning it can't resolve fetal on very dark areas or bright.
Is the total contrary of pixelation, the best description I can give is like if the picture was applied a Gaussian Blur filter
Frequent Visitor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

"fetal" auto correct error...was supposed to read "detail"

 

Contributor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

I would get XG2 box and change box resolution to 1080p. The box makes a difference. I had nrg150n for some time and the box was freezing almost everyday picture quality was poor, it looked like downgrade. I had rng110 box before that and I was getting better picture quality than nrg150n but up to 720p couldn't set it higher than that. But when I got the XG2 box I was in disbelief. The picture quality is amazing big difference. The box works much faster than nrg150n and the default settings were 720p and I was happy that I could change the resolution to 1080p, and I did change it to 1080p. I see people here that complain about the picture quality, the first thing that comes to mind is a bad box and bad signal of course. You can have a good signal but your box must be good.
Frequent Visitor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

My box is an XG2v2-P

 

Last thing I'll do is connect direct from the box to the TV with the HDMI cable supplied by Comcast to eliminate any othere variables, just TV and X1 box.  If same result, then is either bad box as sugested or poor quality as I suspect.  Maybe I'm just very sceptical, but recording 60+ hours of video on a 500GB drive (as I read somewhere on this forum to be the spec of the box) seems an unreasonable amount of compression in order to fit that amount of content, and if we are viewing from the output of that recoding in order to pause, rewind or ff, for me, is just an unreasonable degradation for the convinience. At least there should be an option of Video Quality vs recording time so people like me interested in the best quality possible and don't care about storage could get the desired experience.

 

However, I'll call Comcast to verify the signal strength...who knows if the box can't keep up and degrades the signal in order to provide service on a lower resolution (TV info says it is recieving @1080 but I understand that has nothing to do with the possible degradation the box could be applying), I can't see on this box a significant difference between 720 and 1080 settings.  Once again, the Apple TV feed looks way better than the X1... 

 

Gold Problem Solver

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

Calling Comcast to check your signals is partially pointless because phone reps can't see all critical X1 signals. The only person that is able to check ALL critical X1 signals is a Comcast tech who is actually on-site.

I have one Arris V3 DVR (connected to my best TV) and two XG2's. Personally I think the Arris DVR has notably better picture than the XG2 does. I tried an XG2 on my main TV and I couldn't deal with the drop in picture quality so I re-installed the Arris DVR in that location.



IkerG wrote:

My box is an XG2v2-P

 

Last thing I'll do is connect direct from the box to the TV with the HDMI cable supplied by Comcast to eliminate any othere variables, just TV and X1 box.  If same result, then is either bad box as sugested or poor quality as I suspect.  Maybe I'm just very sceptical, but recording 60+ hours of video on a 500GB drive (as I read somewhere on this forum to be the spec of the box) seems an unreasonable amount of compression in order to fit that amount of content, and if we are viewing from the output of that recoding in order to pause, rewind or ff, for me, is just an unreasonable degradation for the convinience. At least there should be an option of Video Quality vs recording time so people like me interested in the best quality possible and don't care about storage could get the desired experience.

 

However, I'll call Comcast to verify the signal strength...who knows if the box can't keep up and degrades the signal in order to provide service on a lower resolution (TV info says it is recieving @1080 but I understand that has nothing to do with the possible degradation the box could be applying), I can't see on this box a significant difference between 720 and 1080 settings.  Once again, the Apple TV feed looks way better than the X1... 

 


 

Frequent Visitor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

Thanks Rick for your insight. Yes, I meant for a tech to come to the house and do proper measurements :-)

So I guess you also noticed the video quality drop on this boxes right?
Gold Problem Solver

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

At this point I will limit my answer to saying that I believe the X1 DVRs have better picture quality than any of the "Companion" boxes including the XG2.

My beliefs about X1's picture quality differ from most people in this forum.
Frequent Visitor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

So, I did the direct connection box to tv... no cigar
Connected the box on the first split of the signal which is my bedroom(all this splits done by a Comcast tech on an earlier last year complaint about signal drop on my internet... tech confirmed it was a problem on the Comcast distribution hub that sits out of the house... they fixed it and then kindly reviewed my wiring and splits which they changed to theirs and confirmed levels in the middle of the optimal window). No cigar with box at the first split of signal

I enclose 2 photos the best I could of the same frame of the 2nd episode of young pope... first is HBOgo on a 720appleTV the second is X1... unacceptable... box goes back tomorrow
IMG_0079.JPG
IMG_0080.JPG
Frequent Visitor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

I recently switched to the brand new box and X1 and I’m a videophile that works in post on films. I’ve also noticed the picture quality is worse. The best way I can describe it is it looks like a smoothing filter or denoiser is added to certain elements like skin tone. I cannot see and blemishes or pores on actor faces. And it looks bad! I can switch to Amazon, Netflix, or a Blu-ray and it looks like real 1080 resolution. Unfortunately the box menu does not offer any controls over the picture outside resolution. But I suspect a denoiser or digital smoother is set to on to make the picture less grainy and make faces look better. But it looks bad.

I work professionally as an independent filmmaker and animator. Check out my work at ufoclubcreative.com
Frequent Visitor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

The old boxes used to let you turn off noise reduction, etc. the new box doesn’t give you any control! This is horrible if you have a huge calibrated tv and are used to that very detailed true to the material image. I guess they dumbed down the box for the average consumer who like the artificially digitally cleaned look. Maybe it’s time to cut the cable!

I work professionally as an independent filmmaker and animator. Check out my work at ufoclubcreative.com
Silver Problem Solver

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

I improved my X1 picture quality on my Samsung 3D TV by using the TV's Dynamic setting.


I am not a Comcast employee; I am just a customer, volunteering my time to help other customers here in the Forums.
Frequent Visitor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

Just an update: I got on the phone last night with comcast and the rep on the other side of the phone admitted that they didn't know any technicalities about HD specs or the processes, only how to plug and play and reset the box.

So I got online to chat support, and the person I was chatting with did say they were aware of a problem, seemed to understand what I was talking about, and told me to go to the "standard" X1 Box, (meaning one iteration behind?), as there was no solution to the problem we're seeing on the new boxes. He said that even a tech couldn't get into the settings on the new boxes. I was assured he didn't mean "Standard Definition" by switch out to a "standard" X1 box and that it was still and HD DVR.

He said I would have to go into a service center and trade in my newer boxes for the older ones.

When I went to the service center, they told me all they had was the newer X1 boxes, that there was no such thing as a standard x1 box, only a non DVR X1 box. They said that the only thing standard could refer to is standard definition. They told me I would have to go to the older legacy box (non X1) if I wanted to change it out. I asked if it was still 1080 in resolution to make sure, and she said she didn't even know what 1080p or 1080i was! But another worker assured that it was still HD. He defended the X1, and said he used the X1 and it looked great. I told him it was a subtle thing that you wouldn't notice unless you had videophile standards or a large TV set to cinema standards.  I told him that even their TV in the lobby was exhbitiing the "smooth" loss of details. I also mentioned that other customers were noticing this and that there were the screenshots like the one above in this official thread that perfectly illustrate the problem. He abruptly turned and left, as if he didn't want to get into it.

Well I got the legacy box (and legacy 2nd box for an additional TV) andf hooked it up. They had told me it should all be fine once plugged in. But 20 minutes later it had not loaded anything. I called in to service, and the person I got told me that the boxes weren't registered in their inventory yet (as being assigned to my account?), and that it could take anywhere from 2 hours to 24 hours to activate them. she said she would call me back when it went through.


I'll keep posting if I make any progress.


I work professionally as an independent filmmaker and animator. Check out my work at ufoclubcreative.com
Frequent Visitor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

Okay, I am now watching The Deuce on the legacy DVR, and the image quality is back to the previous standard of sharpness without the strange blurring of colors and faces. I can see the texture on people’s faces and even the filmic grain.

The problem is the x1 box, not my TV, and not the signal. I’m happy to get the better image quality but sad to lose the voice operated remote control.


I work professionally as an independent filmmaker and animator. Check out my work at ufoclubcreative.com
New Poster

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

I am also having the same problem just switched my old box for the x1 box yesterday & have changed the settings on new box & picture quality is bad. Not horrible but can definitely tell the difference. I was expecting to be a little better because new equipment but now regretting my decision.
Expert

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor


Lanemyer442 wrote:
I am also having the same problem just switched my old box for the x1 box yesterday & have changed the settings on new box & picture quality is bad. Not horrible but can definitely tell the difference. I was expecting to be a little better because new equipment but now regretting my decision.

hi, what is the model number of that set top box? do you have other X1 set top boxes? how is that set top box connected to your TV? Do you pay for the HD technology fee? What is the output resolution set to for that set top box?


I am not a Comcast employee; I am just a customer, volunteering my time to help other customers here in the Forums.

If you'd like information about the Expert program, you can find it here.
Frequent Visitor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

I don’t work in the film/video biz, but I too loathe the X1 resolution filter. It looks like every frame has been Photoshopped with a filter called “cutesy, bland, ultra-smoothing filter for people who can’t tolerate the complexity of reality and would rather watch only plastic people or anime, preferably on opioids.”

 

XFINITY:  KNOCK IT OFF!!  Give us back our sweat, hair, freckles and natural grime!

 

I’m upset on so many levels.

Expert

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor


morphing wrote:

I don’t work in the film/video biz, but I too loathe the X1 resolution filter. It looks like every frame has been Photoshopped with a filter called “cutesy, bland, ultra-smoothing filter for people who can’t tolerate the complexity of reality and would rather watch only plastic people or anime, preferably on opioids.”

 

XFINITY:  KNOCK IT OFF!!  Give us back our sweat, hair, freckles and natural grime!

 

I’m upset on so many levels.


it is probable that your TV equipment may need to be set up or features turned off etc. The video that you see is prepared by the producers and is unchanged as it is delivered to your device. 


I am not a Comcast employee; I am just a customer, volunteering my time to help other customers here in the Forums.

If you'd like information about the Expert program, you can find it here.
Regular Visitor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

I would guess that the reduced resolution is the product of signal compression.  If so, there likely wouldn't be any way to turn it off (what if everyone turned it off?).  As I understand it, X1 boxes aren't tuner boxes like we used to have which recieved all the channels at the end of the cable and decided what proceeded to the TV but the X1 box sends a request to a "main server" that responds with the one channel we want to see and it alone is streamed (that would explain the delay in changing channels and other sluggish response from the remote).  This frees up an immense amount of bandwidth and if they can compress that one channel down some more they save more bandwidth.  This feature wouldn't have an OFF setting either (what if everyone turned it off?). Who knows, maybe in the future one might be able to pay to upgrade to "TRUE 4K" service.  Awesome.

 

Welcome to the future ...

 

 

Expert

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor


randyA320 wrote:

I would guess that the reduced resolution is the product of signal compression.  If so, there likely wouldn't be any way to turn it off (what if everyone turned it off?).  As I understand it, X1 boxes aren't tuner boxes like we used to have which recieved all the channels at the end of the cable and decided what proceeded to the TV but the X1 box sends a request to a "main server" that responds with the one channel we want to see and it alone is streamed (that would explain the delay in changing channels and other sluggish response from the remote).  This frees up an immense amount of bandwidth and if they can compress that one channel down some more they save more bandwidth.  This feature wouldn't have an OFF setting either (what if everyone turned it off?). Who knows, maybe in the future one might be able to pay to upgrade to "TRUE 4K" service.  Awesome.

 

Welcome to the future ...


linear TV channels (numbered) are not IPTV they are each broadcast on a particular frequency and received by your TV. The tuning channel change delay is a combination of things, the request goes to a cloud server that tells the actual set top bot to change the channel.


I am not a Comcast employee; I am just a customer, volunteering my time to help other customers here in the Forums.

If you'd like information about the Expert program, you can find it here.
Contributor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

 If it is linear, it should be the same no matter what box you have, if it is VOD, X1 may be using IP-VOD at god knows what awful bitrate with their lousy MPEG-4, and the older boxes would still be using QAM-based VOD with MPEG-2 encoding at ~9mbps. The linear content in MPEG-4 looks like complete trash, there is no detail, the colors are crushed hard, and everytime there is a lot of motion, everything just gets blurry and you completely lose all the detail. It's amazing that Comcast hasn't had more complaints about the poor picture quality, it seems that most Americans are too oblivious to tell the difference, or they are watching on a much too small TV.

Expert

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor


BiggAJW wrote:

 If it is linear, it should be the same no matter what box you have, if it is VOD, X1 may be using IP-VOD at god knows what awful bitrate with their lousy MPEG-4, and the older boxes would still be using QAM-based VOD with MPEG-2 encoding at ~9mbps. The linear content in MPEG-4 looks like complete trash, there is no detail, the colors are crushed hard, and everytime there is a lot of motion, everything just gets blurry and you completely lose all the detail. It's amazing that Comcast hasn't had more complaints about the poor picture quality, it seems that most Americans are too oblivious to tell the difference, or they are watching on a much too small TV.


moving to mpeg4 from legacy mpeg2 doesn't degrade ithe signal. What is the output setting you have on your set top box? 720p? 1080i? 1080p?


I am not a Comcast employee; I am just a customer, volunteering my time to help other customers here in the Forums.

If you'd like information about the Expert program, you can find it here.
New Poster

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

Glad I’m not the only one that noticed this ridiculous problem. But frankly not surprised. 

 

I noticed the softness immediately. Tried letting the tv upscale, made no difference. It’s built into the box, which is absurd.

 

need a settings hack soon. Love the GUI and backlit voice remote but the pic quality is driving me nuts.

Silver Problem Solver

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor


NoUDont wrote:

Glad I’m not the only one that noticed this ridiculous problem. But frankly not surprised. 

 

I noticed the softness immediately. Tried letting the tv upscale, made no difference. It’s built into the box, which is absurd.

 

need a settings hack soon. Love the GUI and backlit voice remote but the pic quality is driving me nuts.


What is your TV model and what is your X1 model.  I'm sitting in the middle of Harvey's destruction and I don't see a "softness" on any of my three X1 DVR's.


I am not a Comcast employee; I am just a customer, volunteering my time to help other customers here in the Forums.
Contributor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

I also have the same problem since the new X1 box was hooked up.Am fed up.

So I recently ordered Direct TV. But when they came to my house they could not hook me up because there are trees blocking the site line to their sattelite.So eventually I will maybe try Verizon and hope for better results on picture quality.

Expert

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor


badhd wrote:

I also have the same problem since the new X1 box was hooked up.Am fed up.

So I recently ordered Direct TV. But when they came to my house they could not hook me up because there are trees blocking the site line to their sattelite.So eventually I will maybe try Verizon and hope for better results on picture quality.


what is the model number of the set top box and how does the set top box connect to the TV? what is the output setting on your set top box set?


I am not a Comcast employee; I am just a customer, volunteering my time to help other customers here in the Forums.

If you'd like information about the Expert program, you can find it here.
Contributor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

Dont know the model #.It is non DVR though. Box is set at 1080P. It is conected right to the TV with HDMI.

New Poster

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

Look at the pics from ikerg above. Same problem. Soft picture. Built into box. Previous non x1 box had beautiful pic. This is horrendous. My tv has nothing to do with it. Model of x1 is PX013ANM. should I change it.

Silver Problem Solver

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor


NoUDont wrote:

Look at the pics from ikerg above. Same problem. Soft picture. Built into box. Previous non x1 box had beautiful pic. This is horrendous. My tv has nothing to do with it. Model of x1 is PX013ANM. should I change it.


What resolution is your DVR set to?

https://www.xfinity.com/support/cable-tv/x1-video-display/

It sometimes helps to unattach and reattach EVERY coax connection you can find from entry to the residence to the DVR.

I have the same model DVR and my Samsung TV doesn't have that issue.

 


I am not a Comcast employee; I am just a customer, volunteering my time to help other customers here in the Forums.
New Poster

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

It’s set to 1080p60. 

So i change my box in my family room and your suggestion is to check all of my interconnects from street to tv? 🤡

 

next your going to tell me Comcast supports net neutrality.

 

has anyone gotten a satisfactory solution from Comcast yet? 

Expert
Moved:

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

Contributor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

Don't waste your time trying to fix a problem that you can't fix. Comcast's terribly poor "HD" quality can't be fixed by screwing some cables in tighter. Not sure what you people don't understand, it's a compression issue. They bit starve the MPEG-4 so badly that it looks like garbage. The solution is to switch to FiOS or DirecTV.

Expert

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor


BiggAJW wrote:

Don't waste your time trying to fix a problem that you can't fix. Comcast's terribly poor "HD" quality can't be fixed by screwing some cables in tighter. Not sure what you people don't understand, it's a compression issue. They bit starve the MPEG-4 so badly that it looks like garbage. The solution is to switch to FiOS or DirecTV.


your premise is wrong in my opinion. the mpeg generations require that the acceptance of a new level does not degrade the image, the method must double the previous effeciency. Compression (reducing bits needed) is by only update areas of the image that have changed. the mpeg4 adds ability to go back in time (storage) as well as the future (buffer) and create slices (very small areas) to change instead of larger boxes. The technology is easily done by current boxes (the decoding) but the actual producer of programming is using the next version HEVC to send the signal we see. Comcast must take HEVC (High effeciency video codec) and processes it on the fly (aka just in time) for streaming, SD, and HD linear channel feeds. Broadcast television is just now deciding if they are going to convert to ATSC 3.* meaning the same process will be followed to update what is in consumer homes. (adapters required, etc). The technology will always be changing to make it more efficient. The takeaway is that 4k or higher in broadcast will be available years down the road and in the meantime cable systems can implement the technology as they are able to update set top boxes giving us customers the ability to get 4K+ technology sooner rather than later.


I am not a Comcast employee; I am just a customer, volunteering my time to help other customers here in the Forums.

If you'd like information about the Expert program, you can find it here.
Gold Problem Solver

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

Technobable answers aside, in general X1 has a soft and muted picture quality. Recent changes in Comcast signal transmission have made the issue worse, not better.

That being said, on Thanksgiving I went to a family members house who happens to be a diehard Directv fan. I have an LG OLED. He has an LG LCD. I noticed that his Directv was much slower to change channels and the FOX football broadcast contained all the same garbage in the picture that I see on X1. I thought the picture looked soft.

X1 leaves much to be desired but I am not sure that Directv is the cats meow either...

I am going to add here that I still contend that the X1 DVRs have better picture quality than any of the Companion boxes including the XG2. Also, the XG1V4 when set to 1080p offers the best picture quality I have seen from X1.
Contributor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

RustyBen,

 

What you say is mostly true, except about HEVC, since Comcast doesn't USE HEVC, and yet does absolutely nothing to address the problem here, Comcast's bit starvation of their MPEG-4 encoding. MPEG-2 initially required 19.3mbps to provide excellent qualtiy 1080i or 720p, today's encoders can do that in 10-12mbps. MPEG-4 is about double the efficiency, meaning you need 5-6mbps to get a good looking picture. Comcast is encoding a lot of their MPEG-4 HD at 3.8mbps, and in CBR, so it looks like garbage.

 

RickGr4,

 

You can't compare local channels, as they are all over the map, depending on both the local affiliate and the TV provider. That is one area that Comcast likely still has an advantage compared to D*, as they are passing them through without re-compression. If you compare cable channels, you will see that Comcast's VQ is very poor, while DirecTV's is decent to very good. D* is using a higher bitrate, stat muxing the channels, and using some advanced encoding technology, while Comcast is doing a straight CBR encode that looks like a mess whenever there is movement on the screen.

 

For local channels, however, usually nothing will beat OTA. I say usually, as in some markets, DirecTV could be getting a fiber feed and encoding directly to MPEG-4 from there, and end up with higher VQ than a highly compressed OTA feed. However, in most markets, OTA is the golden standard.

Expert

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

HEVC is what is currently supplied to Comcast. HEVC is 'nicknamed' mpeg5 but is actually a different technical name ("A" I think). The stream rate of video is variable all the way from a black screen to a driving snowstorm birghtly lit (low to high). mpeg4 is twice as efficient as mpeg2 at a minimum. a normal amount of movement is so low that mpe4 can store an HD in as small a file as the mpeg2 of the same video. the standards don't allow loss of detail but it plays 'the devil' on fast forward of the X1 DVRs when the source appears to freeze or be black before returned to live video. just the nature of the beast.


I am not a Comcast employee; I am just a customer, volunteering my time to help other customers here in the Forums.

If you'd like information about the Expert program, you can find it here.
Expert

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor


 <snip>

For local channels, however, usually nothing will beat OTA. I say usually, as in some markets, DirecTV could be getting a fiber feed and encoding directly to MPEG-4 from there, and end up with higher VQ than a highly compressed OTA feed. However, in most markets, OTA is the golden standard.


Comcast has a fiber feed in the local stations that feeds one of Comcast's Head-end-in-the-cloud servers.


I am not a Comcast employee; I am just a customer, volunteering my time to help other customers here in the Forums.

If you'd like information about the Expert program, you can find it here.
Contributor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

1. Comcast is not getting HEVC feeds of many, if any channels. Most national channels are distributed in MPEG-4, most local channels are distributed in MPEG-2 as they are muxed for the OTA feeds. It's possible that in some markets, Comcast or other providers are getting a different encode of the locals and doing their own encoding job, but it doesn't look like that is the case yet.

 

2. What you are saying about MPEG-4 being twice as efficient as MPEG-2, while true, is distracting from the actual discussion here. Comcast's use of extremely low bitrates of MPEG-4 and CBR encoding is what is causing the extremely poor video qualtiy on Comcast's cable channels. It is nothing inherent to MPEG-4, as other providers, like DirecTV, provide decent quality with MPEG-4, both through the use of higher bitrates and stat muxes.

 

You need to actually address the issue at hand here, which is Comcast's poor video qualtiy, not ramble on incoherently about HEVC and MPEG-4 and MPEG-2. If you bit starve anything, it will look like garbage. Just as the bandwidth required for a good quality HEVC feed is half that of MPEG-4, which is half that of MPEG-2, the same relationship is basically true for an awful quality feed like Comcast provides, albeit that the older codecs fail less gracefully when bit starved than the newer ones.

Regular Visitor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

Have no idea what you just said but I only rely on one thing when it comes to understanding how Videos look when watching tv and it is my brain and eyes and right now my brain is telling my eyes that ever since I also got the new X-1 4K box my cable Tv picture looks terrible ... it is almost like watching SD versus HD sometimes.... not sure why a highly rated 4K Sony TV that looks awesome when watching DVD’s, Amazon Prime, or any other videos on a different source looks better than Xfinity cable that I spend hundreds of dollars on every month. <br><br>Bottom line is there is an issue with the quality of Xfinities cable quality right now with the new 4K boxes and other boxes and xfinity should at least acknowledge that there is a problem
Contributor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

4K TVs make the horrible over-compression look much worse than on an HDTV. The better the display, the more obvious the extreme over-compression is. Comcast's doesn't care. They want to cram as much stuff in as little bandwidth as possible without having to make custom stat muxes for each market or region, and the result is the garbage that you're seeing. They don't really seem to care about their lousy service at this point.

Expert

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor


BiggAJW wrote:

4K TVs make the horrible over-compression look much worse than on an HDTV. The better the display, the more obvious the extreme over-compression is. Comcast's doesn't care. They want to cram as much stuff in as little bandwidth as possible without having to make custom stat muxes for each market or region, and the result is the garbage that you're seeing. They don't really seem to care about their lousy service at this point.


how does 4k Netflix look? run Netflix' test patterns to verify you are getting datarate throughput? 


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Contributor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

4k Netflix has nothing to do with how horrible *COMCAST* looks on a 4k TV due to *COMCAST'S* over-compression. Of course Netflix is going to look great. This thread is about how Comcast's VQ is extremely poor due to MPEG-4 over-compression, not how Netflix looks on a 4k TV. However, since you went there, Netflix looks amazign on a 4k TV, whether in HD or 4k.

Expert

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor


BiggAJW wrote:

4k Netflix has nothing to do with how horrible *COMCAST* looks on a 4k TV due to *COMCAST'S* over-compression. Of course Netflix is going to look great. This thread is about how Comcast's VQ is extremely poor due to MPEG-4 over-compression, not how Netflix looks on a 4k TV. However, since you went there, Netflix looks amazign on a 4k TV, whether in HD or 4k.


hi, you did not confirm that you tried viewing 4K netflix on the X1 set top box to determine if the output is working in 4k. The linear tV is in 720P or 1080i depending on the channel.


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Contributor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

That is IRRELEVANT. Garbage in, garbage out. The differences between having an XG1v4 scale the video versus a 4k TV scale the video with any version of the XG1 are going to be relatively minute, and no matter what video processor you are using, you will NEVER get a good looking picture out of Comcast's over compressed MPEG-4, only a slightly more or less terrible one.

Expert

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor


BiggAJW wrote:

That is IRRELEVANT. Garbage in, garbage out. The differences between having an XG1v4 scale the video versus a 4k TV scale the video with any version of the XG1 are going to be relatively minute, and no matter what video processor you are using, you will NEVER get a good looking picture out of Comcast's over compressed MPEG-4, only a slightly more or less terrible one.


point was to check to be sure the output of the set top box was functioning in the 4k mode. Others have reported the 4k output is very good as it upconverts from 720p and 1080i and that the interface is much faster and that the bluetooth headphone feature works well. 


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Contributor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

The box's upconversion can do very little over what a TV can do. Even if it is marginally better than the TV's scaler, it cannot get back the detail and color that has been lose in Comcast's bit-starved mess of MPEG-4 compression. No matter what you do, Comcast's picture quality is going to look like garbage. Garbage in, garbage out.

Silver Problem Solver

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor


BiggAJW wrote:

The box's upconversion can do very little over what a TV can do. Even if it is marginally better than the TV's scaler, it cannot get back the detail and color that has been lose in Comcast's bit-starved mess of MPEG-4 compression. No matter what you do, Comcast's picture quality is going to look like garbage. Garbage in, garbage out.


I thought the 4K TV can to do an upconvert?  I don't have a 4K TV, but my 1080p does an upconvert from 720p.

 

A 4K DVR is really only good for 4K Netflix right now, as far as I can tell.  Even if I had a 4K TV, the only benefit I see is a better picture, generally and 4K DVD's.  I may buy a 4K DVD player when I get a 4K TV.  But my Samsung is about as good as I care about with the Xfinity source.

 

Ever consider doing a free exchange of your 4K DVR for the standard DVR? <VBG>

 

 


I am not a Comcast employee; I am just a customer, volunteering my time to help other customers here in the Forums.
Contributor

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor

Yes, the TV can upconvert. It works very well with good quality content like basically everything except Comcast. The picture quality is going to be bad on Comcast no matter what you do to the feed, since it's so badly overcompressed coming from Comcast. I had a TiVo on Comcast with a 4k TV, and my solution was to dump Comcast, switch to another provider, and eventually dump pay TV altogether. Comcast's service is worthless with such lousy VQ. At this point, it's DirecTV or nothing, and the cost of DirecTV is outrageous. OTA looks great, since most of it is not overcompressed (at least not yet). I don't think it's VQ that's primarily killing pay TV, but it certainly can't help the situation. The value proposition for the content just isn't there when OTA, HBO, Netflix, and Amazon have a majority of the good content, and are all way cheaper than paying for TV just to get those cable channels between OTA and the premiums. The solution for VQ is to switch to DirecTV or another provider (if available) if you're willing to pay the big bucks to get your sports and news.

Silver Problem Solver

Re: X1 Video quality seems poor


BiggAJW wrote:

Yes, the TV can upconvert. It works very well with good quality content like basically everything except Comcast. The picture quality is going to be bad on Comcast no matter what you do to the feed, since it's so badly overcompressed coming from Comcast. I had a TiVo on Comcast with a 4k TV, and my solution was to dump Comcast, switch to another provider, and eventually dump pay TV altogether. Comcast's service is worthless with such lousy VQ. At this point, it's DirecTV or nothing, and the cost of DirecTV is outrageous. OTA looks great, since most of it is not overcompressed (at least not yet). I don't think it's VQ that's primarily killing pay TV, but it certainly can't help the situation. The value proposition for the content just isn't there when OTA, HBO, Netflix, and Amazon have a majority of the good content, and are all way cheaper than paying for TV just to get those cable channels between OTA and the premiums. The solution for VQ is to switch to DirecTV or another provider (if available) if you're willing to pay the big bucks to get your sports and news.


Thanks for the reply.  I am going to keep my Samsung 60" 1080p with Comcast until things get better.


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