Apples 1080p content sucks

roidy

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Dec 30, 2008
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So I thought I'd download a 1080p TV episode to see what all the fuss is about, I can't play them on my ATV1 but I thought I'd check one out anyway to see what I was missing.

All I can say is good god how does Apple palm people off with this crap.

Here's 2 uncompressed screen grabs from an episode of Eureka season 5.

image1.jpg
image2.jpg

Uncompressed png versions in a zip file.

I've always been perfectly happy with the quality of iTunes 720p content but this is terrible. I'm going to download a couple more to see if this is just a one off occurance.
 
Last edited:

Carlanga

macrumors 604
Nov 5, 2009
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Maybe is just the TV show source, does it look better in 720 or worse?
Try another series that you know is in HD?
 

roidy

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I'm in the process of downloading the 720p version of the same episode to see if it's a source problem or if the 1080p encode is just rubbish. I'm also downloading a couple of other 1080p TV episodes from different shows to also see if it's just a problem with that one episode.

But that was shocking for my first ever 1080p iTunes download:mad:
 

mic j

macrumors 68030
Mar 15, 2012
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I'm in the process of downloading the 720p version of the same episode to see if it's a source problem or if the 1080p encode is just rubbish. I'm also downloading a couple of other 1080p TV episodes from different shows to also see if it's just a problem with that one episode.

But that was shocking for my first ever 1080p iTunes download:mad:
Quality is source dependent. Impossible to compare unless it's screenshots from original source (disc) and download source (iTunes). Do that and you be able to make a your point.

I have had bluray discs who's quality is atrocious.
 

roidy

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You don't need to compare them to anything to see they're crap quality encodes:rolleyes: When you buy content from iTunes you're never going to see the original source to compare it with, but you do expect better quality than the images I posted. They look no better than SD.
 

nuckinfutz

macrumors 603
Jul 3, 2002
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You don't need to compare them to anything to see they're crap quality encodes:rolleyes: When you buy content from iTunes you're never going to see the original source to compare it with, but you do expect better quality than the images I posted. They look no better than SD.
Series tend to be recorded at lower resolution or depth of field. I see a wide variance of quality on my Apple TV. Some stuff looks pristine and some stuff looks like SD.

This show is clearly trending towards the latter.
 

roidy

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Dec 30, 2008
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Yep, I'm hoping it's just that episode. The quality of those images isn't anything to do with how the show was recorded or depth of field, it's the fact that the video has been compressed to much and it's showing compression artifacts as a result.
 

mic j

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Mar 15, 2012
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Yep, I'm hoping it's just that episode. The quality of those images isn't anything to do with how the show was recorded or depth of field, it's the fact that the video has been compressed to much and it's showing compression artifacts as a result.
The studios encode and provide the materials to Apple. If the material is not of satisfactory quality, you really should blame the studios. Or is it your expectation that Apple should quality control the incoming material and reject anything that does not meet certain quality standards? That might be valid approach. But then people would complaint about why iTunes doesn't have the material they are interested in.
 

roidy

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The studios encode and provide the materials to Apple. If the material is not of satisfactory quality, you really should blame the studios.
I accept that the files come straight from the studio and Apple has no control over the quality, however I pay my money to Apple not the studio so it's upto Apple to make sure I'm getting exactly what I payed for, and I certainly didn't pay for that level of quality.

Or is it your expectation that Apple should quality control the incoming material and reject anything that does not meet certain quality standards? That might be valid approach. But then people would complaint about why iTunes doesn't have the material they are interested in.
Yes, as I said I pay my money to Apple so I expect Apple to quality control the files to make sure they're not selling me crap.
 

chenks

macrumors 6502a
Oct 23, 2007
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Yes, as I said I pay my money to Apple so I expect Apple to quality control the files to make sure they're not selling me crap.
i've seen some pretty crap quality blu-ray's.
so using your analogy i should blame HMV as they were the one that sold it?

apple advertise it as 1080p, they make no guarantees regarding bitrate or quality.
 

roidy

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Dec 30, 2008
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i've seen some pretty crap quality blu-ray's.
so using your analogy i should blame HMV as they were the one that sold it?

apple advertise it as 1080p, they make no guarantees regarding bitrate or quality.
Firstly a Blu-ray is a physical product that you buy sealed so there is no way for the retailer to check the quality. However that being said if there was a quality issue with it you'd take it back to HMV, you wouldn't take it back to the movie studio would you.

Secondly, yes Apple only advertise the files as 1080p but you are well with in your rights to expect a certain level of quality, you expect that when you buy a new car it will come without scratches on the paint work don't you, same thing here when I buy a 1080p HD file from Apple I expect it's of a quality level that will be enjoyable to watch.
 

nateo200

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Feb 4, 2009
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i've seen some pretty crap quality blu-ray's.
so using your analogy i should blame HMV as they were the one that sold it?

apple advertise it as 1080p, they make no guarantees regarding bitrate or quality.
Exactly. High bit rate 720p is way better than low bit rate 1080p....I take all my Blu-ray rips and encode them to 720p so they don't look like CrapTunes 1080p. Everyone has been brain washed into thinking 1080p is like 4x better than 720p, ask anyone on the street! Its ridiculous! Two of my cousins were complaining that their 32" TV's were only 720p and then i explain to them how at that size it made no difference then did a blind test of a movie I had in 1080p and 720p at similar bit rates...they thought the 1080p was the 720p :roll eyes: . Apple plays on this for money. People care more about whats "better" but not really understanding it and trusting these companies....
 

bobr1952

macrumors 68020
Jan 21, 2008
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Melbourne, FL
You don't need to compare them to anything to see they're crap quality encodes:rolleyes: When you buy content from iTunes you're never going to see the original source to compare it with, but you do expect better quality than the images I posted. They look no better than SD.
Of course you need to compare them in order to tell if the problem is with Apple or the content provider. Use a blu ray and compare that to a 1080p download from iTunes--then you can really see what the difference is. What you posted may indeed be crap but you can't tell if it is Apple crap or the studio's crap. :)
 

roidy

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Of course you need to compare them in order to tell if the problem is with Apple or the content provider. Use a blu ray and compare that to a 1080p download from iTunes--then you can really see what the difference is. What you posted may indeed be crap but you can't tell if it is Apple crap or the studio's crap. :)
Well it's not Apple crap, as Apple don't do the encoding. What I'm saying is you don't need to compare those images to anything to tell that it's just a crap encode plain and simple.

Even if you did compare those images to a Blu-ray and the Blu-ray was just as bad it still dosen't change the fact that the encoded file is crap and shouldn't be on sale.
 

chenks

macrumors 6502a
Oct 23, 2007
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Firstly a Blu-ray is a physical product that you buy sealed so there is no way for the retailer to check the quality. However that being said if there was a quality issue with it you'd take it back to HMV, you wouldn't take it back to the movie studio would you.

Secondly, yes Apple only advertise the files as 1080p but you are well with in your rights to expect a certain level of quality, you expect that when you buy a new car it will come without scratches on the paint work don't you, same thing here when I buy a 1080p HD file from Apple I expect it's of a quality level that will be enjoyable to watch.
if the disc is undamaged and the content plays correctly then you wouldn't have any success taking it back to anyone.
"quality" is subjective and what you might think is "crap" another person might think is "good".

providing the content has a resolution of 1080p then that is all that has been advertised.

you car scratch analogy is flawed though.

----------

Even if you did compare those images to a Blu-ray and the Blu-ray was just as bad it still dosen't change the fact that the encoded file is crap and shouldn't be on sale.
so if this was case, you would need to take your complaint to the content provider, which would be the studio.
 

roidy

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Dec 30, 2008
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OK, an update I've just finished downloading the 720p version of the same file and the quality is fine, here's some stats for you:-

The 720p file has a video bitrate of 3964kbps while the 1080p has a video bitrate of 4921kbps, the 1080p file has a 2.25 times the pixels but only a 1.24 times increase in bitrate, meaning the 1080p encode suffers as a result. To get the same level of quality you'd expect an equal increase in bitrate as there is in pixel density.
 

hafr

macrumors 68030
Sep 21, 2011
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I accept that the files come straight from the studio and Apple has no control over the quality, however I pay my money to Apple not the studio so it's upto Apple to make sure I'm getting exactly what I payed for, and I certainly didn't pay for that level of quality.



Yes, as I said I pay my money to Apple so I expect Apple to quality control the files to make sure they're not selling me crap.
Have you contacted Apple and told them this?
 

chenks

macrumors 6502a
Oct 23, 2007
964
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UK
OK, an update I've just finished downloading the 720p version of the same file and the quality is fine, here's some stats for you:-

The 720p file has a video bitrate of 3964kbps while the 1080p has a video bitrate of 4921kbps, the 1080p file has a 2.25 times the pixels but only a 1.24 times increase in bitrate, meaning the 1080p encode suffers as a result. To get the same level of quality you'd expect an equal increase in bitrate as there is in pixel density.
nope, your bitrate theory is flawed.
improvement in encoding techniques mean that bitrate numbers are becoming more meaningless.

higher bitrate does not always mean better quality.
 

roidy

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Dec 30, 2008
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Nottingham, UK
"quality" is subjective and what you might think is "crap" another person might think is "good".
OK, so do you think the quality of the file I posted is acceptable, would you accept it? I don't think very many people would.

you car scratch analogy is flawed though.
In what way is it flawed, if you buy any product you are entitled to expect a certain level of quality, and if that level isn't met then you complain. Again if you went to the car showroom to pick up your brand new car and it was covered in scratches you'd complain wouldn't you.

so if this was case, you would need to take your complaint to the content provider, which would be the studio.
No you wouldn't, don't tell me if you purchased a sub-par Blu-ray from HMV you'd take it back to the movie studio because you wouldn't, you'd take it back to HMV and get a refund, plain and simple. Same thing with iTunes if you get a sub-par file you don't get on the phone to the movie studio, you contact Apple and they either let you download it again or give you a refund.
 

mic j

macrumors 68030
Mar 15, 2012
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What would be nice, is if Apple would let you do a 30s preview on your aTV. Then you could decide whether or not you want to purchase/rent based on your personal quality needs. Sort of like a iTunes song sample.

----------

No you wouldn't, don't tell me if you purchased a sub-par Blu-ray from HMV you'd take it back to the movie studio because you wouldn't, you'd take it back to HMV and get a refund, plain and simple. Same thing with iTunes if you get a sub-par file you don't get on the phone to the movie studio, you contact Apple and they either let you download it again or give you a refund.
Have you tried to contact Apple Customer Support with a complaint and a request for a refund?

Never mind. I see hafr already asked that.
 

chenks

macrumors 6502a
Oct 23, 2007
964
1
UK
OK, so do you think the quality of the file I posted is acceptable, would you accept it? I don't think very many people would.
it's not possible to judge based on your 2 screengrabs i'm afraid.


In what way is it flawed, if you buy any product you are entitled to expect a certain level of quality, and if that level isn't met then you complain. Again if you went to the car showroom to pick up your brand new car and it was covered in scratches you'd complain wouldn't you.
a scratched car is physically damaged.
comparing it to a blu-ray purchase, you are not complaining that the disc would be scratched, you are saying that the quality of the content is not, in your opinion, good enough.

your download is not physically damaged, it plays correctly.
it's just that, in your opinion, the quality of the "content" is not up to your standards. that is a subjective complaint, not a physical complaint.

No you wouldn't, don't tell me if you purchased a sub-par Blu-ray from HMV you'd take it back to the movie studio because you wouldn't, you'd take it back to HMV and get a refund, plain and simple. Same thing with iTunes if you get a sub-par file you don't get on the phone to the movie studio, you contact Apple and they either let you download it again or give you a refund.
if it was "physically" damaged i would return it to the place of purchase.
your download is not physically damaged, thus rendering your argument "moot".
 

roidy

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Dec 30, 2008
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Nottingham, UK
nope, your bitrate theory is flawed.
improvement in encoding techniques mean that bitrate numbers are becoming more meaningless.

higher bitrate does not always mean better quality.
But it's obviously not working is it given the example I've posted, the studio/Apple just needs to look at the resulting file and think to themselves that looks crap lets up the bitrate and get it looking good for our customers, good god it not hard.

You can argue the toss all you want, it wont change the fact, that file is crap and not fit to be on sale.
 

chenks

macrumors 6502a
Oct 23, 2007
964
1
UK
But it's obviously not working is it given the example I've posted, the studio/Apple just needs to look at the resulting file and think to themselves that looks crap lets up the bitrate and get it looking good for our customers, good god it not hard.

You can argue the toss all you want, it wont change the fact, that file is crap and not fit to be on sale.
go ahead and complain then rather that arguing about it here.
 

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