Author Topic: Questions on ABC HD content  (Read 6400 times)

Offline ozbear

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Questions on ABC HD content
« on: February 13, 2008, 07:06:58 AM »
I live in Sydney.

With the new ABC channels, am I supposed to have content for ABC HDTV?  It doesn't show anything.
The other two ABC channels are populated.

A complete channel list of what guide info should be assigned to which channel (including the channel numbers as you did with the ABC changes) would be most useful.  I am never sure, for example, which SBS channel should be assigned which guide listing.  Seems Ten channel1 seems to have changed content too.

Oz

Offline prl

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Questions on ABC HD content
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2008, 10:21:39 AM »
I live in Sydney.

With the new ABC channels, am I supposed to have content for ABC HDTV?  It doesn't show anything.
The other two ABC channels are populated.

A complete channel list of what guide info should be assigned to which channel (including the channel numbers as you did with the ABC changes) would be most useful.  I am never sure, for example, which SBS channel should be assigned which guide listing.  Seems Ten channel1 seems to have changed content too.

Oz
The IceTV EPG only shows programs as HD if they are native HD broadcasts. Most of the ABC's and all of SBS's "HD" content isn't native HD; it's SD rescaled/deinterlaced to their HD format (720p for ABC, 576p for SBS).

I think the only prime time native HD on ABC HD at the moment is the period farce Robin Hood. That does show up in the IceTV program.

You can set your IceTV subscription option to "Copy SD shows to HD channels," but that's not entirely satisfactory either, because some commercial channels don't always upscale SD to HD when they're not showing native HD. Similarly the ABC doesn't upscale the 7:30pm news.
Peter
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Beyonwiz T2, T3 & T4 for testing

Offline Daniel Hall at IceTV

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Re: Questions on ABC HD content
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2008, 10:33:59 AM »
I have just split this off to make it easier for people to find.

But prl has got it 100% correct.

The only thing to add is that yes, Ten HD at channel 1 (as channel 1 changed a while ago from Ten SD to Ten HD) is showing different content at certain times of the day, this is reflected in the guide as long as you have the Ten HD guide information assigned to channel 1.
Regards,

Daniel.
CTO.

Offline ozbear

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Re: Questions on ABC HD content
« Reply #3 on: February 14, 2008, 04:46:01 PM »
As far as ABC HDTV is concerned, why does the listing say "No Data Available" then instead of "Unknown".  I thought you guys used "Unknown" to convey that the content was not known to be HD.

I have ABC HDTV assigned to ABD HDTV in the assign-listings-to-channel fandango.

A simple page on this website that says which listing is supposed to be assigned to which channel, for the major regions, would  help a lot.  If there is already one out there someplace, please tell me where it is and/or make it more prominent.

Oz
« Last Edit: February 14, 2008, 04:48:24 PM by ozbear »

Offline dishy

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Re: Questions on ABC HD content
« Reply #4 on: March 14, 2008, 06:22:03 PM »
So, what's the current situation with ABC and SBS HDTV?

Now that you have been showing data for the commecial HD channels, will we get proper guides for SBS and ABC, too? Because now that the commercial channels are showing different programming on HD, we can't use "copy SD to HD" anymore.

I don't understand the "we only list HD native content" thing. Shouldn't you list everything that is showing on a channel regardless of its source/quality? That would fix all these problems. Even if it is not natively shot in HD, there are other advantages to recording the HD version (such as interlacing and screen format).

These stations (and their electronic guides) list these shows as existing, so why doesn't IceTV acknowledge their existence, instead of pretending there is nothing being shown on these channels most of the time?

Offline Arrikhan

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Re: Questions on ABC HD content
« Reply #5 on: March 16, 2008, 03:18:18 PM »
These stations (and their electronic guides) list these shows as existing, so why doesn't IceTV acknowledge their existence, instead of pretending there is nothing being shown on these channels most of the time?

I agree with this. Surely it's not iceTV's responsibility to filter, more just to republish this information as an EPG from where ever they source it in order that we can record it where ever it is.

On the flip side, if your PVR system records it where ever it is .. it probably doesn't really matter :)

With the advent of multiple formatting, in reality, the PVR's should create a field to identify the format in order that this information can be populated and allow your PVR to prioritise HD content if desired.

With this migration to digital, we'll never be happy until this country COMMITS to digital content, rather than the television stations dribble stuff out. The mere fact that iceTV is guessing that the HD version of an SD channel is the same is evidence enough we have more waiting to do ...

For the time being, iceTV allow you to copy that epg data from SD -> HD ..


Arrikhan

Offline Daniel Hall at IceTV

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Re: Questions on ABC HD content
« Reply #6 on: March 17, 2008, 02:13:17 PM »
In the case of ABC and SBS we are able to use the information from there websites, however neither of these stations publish a "HD" channel guide, there is also no confirmation that all shows that are on the SD channel will be played on the HD channel.

We took the stance a long time ago that it was better to have an "Unknown" section in the guide than to list a program that may not be shown on that channel.

Obviously this will change if either a set policy comes out from ABC and SBS or they start to publish a separate guide for their HD channels.

And in the meantime if you are happy with the occasional show being listed in the guide that is not on the HD channel then you can use the "Copy SD to HD" option that's available under the My Account section of the IceTV website.

Because now that the commercial channels are showing different programming on HD, we can't use "copy SD to HD" anymore.

Not true, the "Copy SD to HD" function will only be used for channels that do not have a specific HD guide. For example in capital cities the copy SD to HD does not apply to 7HD or 10HD (and shortly to 9HD as they begin their multi-channeling as well). So you can definitely use this option and not impact on the multi-channel guides.

Offline amandaandjustin

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Re: Questions on ABC HD content
« Reply #7 on: March 18, 2008, 01:52:26 PM »
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In the case of ABC and SBS we are able to use the information from there websites, however neither of these stations publish a "HD" channel guide, there is also no confirmation that all shows that are on the SD channel will be played on the HD channel.

We took the stance a long time ago that it was better to have an "Unknown" section in the guide than to list a program that may not be shown on that channel.

I think that it's pretty well known that ABC HD duplicates ABC1 except for state based content (news, newsbreaks and Stateline). SBS HD is a pure duplication of the main SBS channel. I don't think it's unreasonable to expect guide data to reflect that.

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Not true, the "Copy SD to HD" function will only be used for channels that do not have a specific HD guide. For example in capital cities the copy SD to HD does not apply to 7HD or 10HD (and shortly to 9HD as they begin their multi-channeling as well). So you can definitely use this option and not impact on the multi-channel guides.

It would be nice is this was made clear on the account page where you select the option.  ::) The "what's this" suggests that it will be applied to all HD channels.

Justin

Offline dishy

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Re: Questions on ABC HD content
« Reply #8 on: March 21, 2008, 09:59:24 AM »
In the case of ABC and SBS we are able to use the information from there websites, however neither of these stations publish a "HD" channel guide, there is also no confirmation that all shows that are on the SD channel will be played on the HD channel.

Have you tried asking them if they'll give you this information?

Also, this seems untrue. I get guide information for those channels broadcast in the DVB stream.

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We took the stance a long time ago that it was better to have an "Unknown" section in the guide than to list a program that may not be shown on that channel.

And how many of your users did you ask about what they would prefer? Couldn't you list the predicted content, and then use a "HD" flag for the shows that are known to be broadcast in HD? Then you could add a "prefer HD" option to IceTV remote. That way, if there is a known HD broadcast, it would record that, otherwise fall back on whatever SD broadcast of that show is available.

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And in the meantime if you are happy with the occasional show being listed in the guide that is not on the HD channel then you can use the "Copy SD to HD" option that's available under the My Account section of the IceTV website.

Uhhh, we were told that this would affect ALL HD channels. And I was specifically told that it was "impossible"  to implement a feature where this could be enabled on an individual channel basis.

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Not true, the "Copy SD to HD" function will only be used for channels that do not have a specific HD guide.

So, it will only work on SBS? Doesn't ABC HD have occasional HD data, making it a "specific HD guide"? It would be nice if we were actually told in the beginning how this is supposed to work.

Offline Daniel Hall at IceTV

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Re: Questions on ABC HD content
« Reply #9 on: March 21, 2008, 01:15:46 PM »
In the case of ABC and SBS we are able to use the information from there websites, however neither of these stations publish a "HD" channel guide, there is also no confirmation that all shows that are on the SD channel will be played on the HD channel.

Have you tried asking them if they'll give you this information?

Also, this seems untrue. I get guide information for those channels broadcast in the DVB stream.[/qoute]

Yes, we have and the last response we received was that they do not track this information.

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We took the stance a long time ago that it was better to have an "Unknown" section in the guide than to list a program that may not be shown on that channel.

And how many of your users did you ask about what they would prefer? Couldn't you list the predicted content, and then use a "HD" flag for the shows that are known to be broadcast in HD? Then you could add a "prefer HD" option to IceTV remote. That way, if there is a known HD broadcast, it would record that, otherwise fall back on whatever SD broadcast of that show is available.

The responses that we have received in general have been positive that we have the gaps in the guides where it is literally unknown what will be on rather than hoping that the HD channel will simulcast what is on SD (which definitely does not happen in all regions).

We are looking at an option for IceTV Remote for 'prefer HD', but there is a lot of work involved in getting this done and we are still a very small team so it could be a while until something like this is implemented.

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Quote
And in the meantime if you are happy with the occasional show being listed in the guide that is not on the HD channel then you can use the "Copy SD to HD" option that's available under the My Account section of the IceTV website.

Uhhh, we were told that this would affect ALL HD channels. And I was specifically told that it was "impossible"  to implement a feature where this could be enabled on an individual channel basis.

And when it was implemented it did affect ALL HD channels. And it is impossible to implement a feature where this could be implemented on an individual channel basis and on a individual user basis. The reason that the current HD multi-channels are not included in this is that they are now unique channels that are not linked to their corresponding SD channels anymore.

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Not true, the "Copy SD to HD" function will only be used for channels that do not have a specific HD guide.

So, it will only work on SBS? Doesn't ABC HD have occasional HD data, making it a "specific HD guide"? It would be nice if we were actually told in the beginning how this is supposed to work.

ABC HD does not have a specific HD guide, as I said above the "Copy SD to HD" option is only applied to channels that do not have a specific HD guide, or to put it another way it is applied to all HD channels that are not doing a HD multi-channel.

Offline dishy

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Re: Questions on ABC HD content
« Reply #10 on: March 21, 2008, 04:34:07 PM »
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ABC HD does not have a specific HD guide,

So, you don't even list ABC HD broadcasts, even when they are being broadcast in HD? This is contrary to what has been said before about only listing shows on HD channels that are broadcast in HD. It's all very confusing.

As far as the "unknown content" issue - I discovered IceTV through an interview on Boxcutters, where it was said that you create guide content by actually watching the stations. For example, you would update the guide is a show was going to run late or whatever. This was highly touted on Boxcutters.

So, are those days over? If the ABC doesn't provide a guide, can't you monitor the channels and generate it from there? I thought that's what IceTV was supposed to be about - a real guide based on the actual programming, and informed decisions from TV experts.

Offline prl

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Re: Questions on ABC HD content
« Reply #11 on: March 22, 2008, 07:29:43 AM »
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ABC HD does not have a specific HD guide,

So, you don't even list ABC HD broadcasts, even when they are being broadcast in HD? This is contrary to what has been said before about only listing shows on HD channels that are broadcast in HD. It's all very confusing.
...
IceTV only has HD broadcasts listed when they are actually broadcast in native HD. The ABC broadcasts very little in native HD, so the IceTV guide for ABC HD is mostly empty. Programs that are actually broadcast in native HD are in the guide. I think the only prime time program on the ABC that's currently being broadcast in HD is Robin Hood.

The ABC HD guide isn't specific, since the ABC doesn't multicast on HD. The shows on HD are the same as on SD, except for state-based programs like the news and Stateline. When they're on SD, the HD service shows program information and simulcasts the music in DiG Radio.

Offline dishy

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Re: Questions on ABC HD content
« Reply #12 on: March 23, 2008, 08:37:09 PM »
IceTV only has HD broadcasts listed when they are actually broadcast in native HD.

I get that - but the question is - WHY? It doesn't make any sense. It's not like nothing is being broadcast on the channel at those times, so why is the guide empty? Could someone please explain this to me, because it defies all logic. I just want IceTV to tell me what is on what channel at what time - not to tell me what content is worthy of my consideration.

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The ABC broadcasts very little in native HD, so the IceTV guide for ABC HD is mostly empty. Programs that are actually broadcast in native HD are in the guide. I think the only prime time program on the ABC that's currently being broadcast in HD is Robin Hood.

So, "Copy SD to HD doesn't work when Robin Hood is on? Because that sounds like a specific HD guide to me.

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The ABC HD guide isn't specific, since the ABC doesn't multicast on HD.

So, if it isn't specific, do you not list Robin Hood?

Sounds like IceTV is rewarding the commercial stations for abusing their broadcast licenses, and punishing the ABC for not abusing theirs. HD channels are NOT supposed to be used for multicasting - they are supposed to be used for broadcasting HD versions of the same content that is on the SD channel.


Offline prl

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Re: Questions on ABC HD content
« Reply #13 on: March 24, 2008, 06:55:16 PM »
IceTV only has HD broadcasts listed when they are actually broadcast in native HD.

I get that - but the question is - WHY? It doesn't make any sense. It's not like nothing is being broadcast on the channel at those times, so why is the guide empty? Could someone please explain this to me, because it defies all logic. I just want IceTV to tell me what is on what channel at what time - not to tell me what content is worthy of my consideration.

My understanding of it is that it's a bit unpredictable what will be broadcast on the HD channel when the native content is SD, though I'd have thought that the patterns would have settled down a bit by now.

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The ABC broadcasts very little in native HD, so the IceTV guide for ABC HD is mostly empty. Programs that are actually broadcast in native HD are in the guide. I think the only prime time program on the ABC that's currently being broadcast in HD is Robin Hood.

So, "Copy SD to HD doesn't work when Robin Hood is on? Because that sounds like a specific HD guide to me.

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The ABC HD guide isn't specific, since the ABC doesn't multicast on HD.

So, if it isn't specific, do you not list Robin Hood?

Sounds like IceTV is rewarding the commercial stations for abusing their broadcast licenses, and punishing the ABC for not abusing theirs. HD channels are NOT supposed to be used for multicasting - they are supposed to be used for broadcasting HD versions of the same content that is on the SD channel.

I'm not sure who the "you" is. You're quoting me, but I don't work for IceTV, nor do I have any control over how IceTV complies their content.

Copy SD to HD won't overwrite programming that's already in the HD EPG. It will just fill in the gaps. My understanding is that "specific" guides are ones where there is multicasting. The ABC and SBS don't multicast on HD. SBS only simulcasts (and I think, simulcasts everything). ABC simulcasts upscaled SD content on HD when there's no native HD, and downscales native HD content to SD when the source is native HD. Exceptions are for state programming like the News and Stateline, when ABC HD broadcasyts program information and the sound from DiG Radio.

As far as multicasting goes, the restriction that meant that the commercial stations had to simulcast expired late last year (2007). I have no reason to think that the stations aren't complying with their license conditions by multicasting.


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