Apple TV HD quality vs DVD

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by Lanman, Sep 9, 2010.

  1. macrumors member

    Lanman

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2005
    Location:
    San Diego, Ca
    #1
    For those of you who already have an ATV how does the quality of the HD compare to a DVD being upscaled by a PS3 or similar device?

    Thanks

    Dan
     
  2. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2008
    Location:
    Nottingham, UK
    #2
    It's better, quality wise unless you get a bad encode of something then it usually goes like this:-

    Higher quality to lower quality.
    Blu-Ray
    Apple HD
    Upscaled DVD
    Normal DVD
    Apple SD

    The bottom three's order can depend greatly on the quality of the upscaling and the quality of the encode.
     
  3. macrumors 68030

    TheBritishBloke

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2009
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    #3
    +1 for above.

    I LOVE the quality of iTunes 720p videos.. Even though I love Blu-Rays even more at 1080p.
     
  4. thread starter macrumors member

    Lanman

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2005
    Location:
    San Diego, Ca
    #4
    Cool!

    I was hoping that ATV HD was better than a DVD.

    My plan is to reduce my Netflix to $8.95 down from $18 a month and eliminate the waste of having extra DVDs laying around for weeks without being able to watch them and just rent them when I want to watch them.
     
  5. macrumors 68040

    plinden

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2004
    #5
    Do you mean you're planning on using the new Apple TV to access Netflix? Because there's no guarantee that it'll be HD - the quality of Netflix streaming depends on what Netflix provides, not Apple. The order of quality posted by roidy only applies to content purchased or rented from Apple. I've done quite a lot of Netflix streaming recently and I'd say it's mostly below DVD quality.
     
  6. macrumors 68030

    TheBritishBloke

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2009
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    #6
    This ^^

    They have to lower the quality when streaming via that to ensure you have no/less buffer.

    Apple HD Rentals are the only one's you'll get that are definitely 720p HD, as Apple promises that as you're paying for it.

    What gets me is, is the rental system going to bike like it used to be? Where you rented it, got 30 days to watch it, then got 2 days to watch it? That's what gets me.. What If you have to go out etc.
     
  7. thread starter macrumors member

    Lanman

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2005
    Location:
    San Diego, Ca
    #7
    I will be streaming Neflix but I was talking about ATV streaming.

    Right now, I have the 2 disc plan with blu-Ray and I will drop to 1 disc and no blu-Ray. My thinking was that most months we have the discs sitting around for a few weeks and rarely watch more than a couple a month. If I can save $10 a month that means I can stream 2 movies via iTunes and break even.

    Streaming to me is more convenient than discs, many times I have checked the discs that I have at home and wished I had one of the others in the queues instead. Darn teenagers messing with my queue. :)
     
  8. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2010
    Location:
    England
    #8
    Additional Questions

    Sorry to butt in but I am curious about the new ATV but was surprised to read that it would only be at 720 and not 1080 for the full HD.

    Can anyone tell me, are Apple aspiring to 1080 at some stage, possibly with an upgrade to the files that will be streamed or a software change to the ATV itself? Or have they conceeded that the UK broadband system will be insufficent to cope with 1080 streams?

    I have only been watching DVDs in the past but the streaming idea of HD sounds ideal and a big cost saver in the long run but any advice would be appreciated.
     
  9. macrumors 68030

    SDAVE

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2007
    Location:
    Nowhere
    #9
    Of course it will be better. DVD's only have 480p max res.

    Audio will be equivalent, because both use compressed Dolby Digital (AC3).

    Nothing will beat BD. It uses high bitrates, has a max res of 1920x1080 and the ability for lossless codecs such as DTS Lossless.

    Yes, streaming services can increase resolution and add more audio codecs to the stream, but at what cost? The reason online streaming services are there because the general public forgto the feeling of tangible objects and they want things instantly.

    Films should be seen as books, not some cheap object they can watch once and toss away. Such a shame.
     
  10. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2010
    Location:
    England
    #10
    Thanks for that and I think it is sort of convincing me to buy one. I was just concerned if there was going to be a ATV ver 3.0 coming out that would incorporate the 1080 as standard I would wait. But it does look likely that a software and the film files change will be all that is necessary to make that happen, so I am not buying a new black box that will require replacing in the next year.

    As for your comment above, I'll keep the films if they were any good!
    There is really so much tosh out there, I think most are not worth keeping.
     
  11. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2010
    Location:
    England
    #11
    Ok, one final question, will this connection be enough for ATV ver 2.0?

    [​IMG]
     
  12. macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2003
    #12
    Should be fine for any itunes 720p rentals or netflix streaming. Presuming of course nothing else is eating up bandwidth (like a pc streaming a video etc. off of the same pipe).
     
  13. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2010
    Location:
    Ontario
    #13
    I doubt that there will be a 1080P upgrade. Both the existing Apple TV and the new one don't have the power to do 1080P. Apple clearly sees streaming as the way of the future, and 1080p consumes too much bandwidth for effective streaming. Any new version supporting 1080p is years off.
     
  14. macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2003
    #14
    This is the part of your post with which I agree. Streaming may not [yet] be as good as Blu-ray, but it allows people to watch films they might not have otherwise. With Netflix streaming, I take chances on movies that I would never put on my "precious" disc queue. As a result, I've gotten to see some fantastic indie films, some older films I never knew about, great documentaries, etc.

    Besides, as technology gets better, picture quality gets better. No need to wait for that old black-and-white movie to come out on Blu-ray before you decide to watch it, for example, especially when people have been watching it on the original scratchy film, VHS, and then DVD for decades.
     
  15. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2008
    #15
    The A4 SOC most definitely has the power to do 1080p easily. The issue isn't processing power. The issue is that unless you have a 20Mbps internet connection you can't stream a high enough bit rate 1080p encode. And since most people do not have close to that, it's pointless for them to do it right now.

    On top of that the studios still need to keep some reason for people to get spend $15-20 on a physical disk. That reason is higher quality. So the studios aren't likely to license that to Apple or any other significant vendor for streaming at this time.
     
  16. macrumors 68030

    TheBritishBloke

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2009
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    #16
    BT Sucks as a provider, yet I too have stayed with them, and been with them for 10 years for my internet..

    Should be fine.. When I buy HD TV Episodes etc from iTunes on my Mac, I get to start playing them within seconds.. They said they'd upgrade my speed to 24mb by June.. They're 3 months late :/
     
  17. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2008
    #17
    "Full HD" is about much more than resolution. Bitrate is what it's all about. Avatar on Blu Ray has a peak bitrate of 40 Mbps and, well, most broadband customers have about a fourth of that at BEST (you have about 1/8 that speed).

    Thus, streaming media will not have anything close to Blu Ray quality video. I repeat: not even close! This is true of Apple TV and 720p and also true of any other service advertising "1080p".

    In actuality, a 720p image will look better than a 1080p image of identical bitrate, but resolution is something customers easily understand, so it's easy to latch onto.

    Anyway, my point is that Apple TV won't and shouldn't have 1080p capabilities and you shouldn't care. At least, not until broadband speeds become much faster.
     
  18. Guest

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2008
  19. macrumors regular

    alfonsog

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2002
    Location:
    Cape Coral, FL
    #19
    Here in the USA we get 30 days to start it and then only 24 hours to watch it... although I've paused it 1/2 way through and come back to it later and it still finishes, as long as you don't accidentally hit menu or the power goes off... interesting that the TV shows have a 48 hour window in USA.

    Everywhere else in the world the movie rentals are 48 hours, so there's finally something that you all have and we don't! I'm moving to Canada! ;)
     

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