Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Quality issues on Sky Sports - some kind of patterned overlay?



I recently purchased the sky sports pass with Boost, and I am using a NowTV Stick. The quality was a little below my expectations considering it's 1080p 50fps (it looks noticeably worse than BT and Amazon).


Upon a little investigation I noticed that it wasn't a problem with the sharpness, but rather that there was a subtle pattern overlay/watermark on the picture that was making it look patchy and artefacted.


I then noticed that when I pause and unpause, the overlay can be seen clearly (it then fades after a few seconds, but not completely). 


This picture shows what I mean (towards the bottom half):


It seems to happen on all the football channels, I checked Netball out of curiosity and it didn't happen there. It also doesn't happen when I stream from the NowTV app. I know its not my TV as I stream plenty of other stuff without this. 


Is this pattern familiar to you guys? Is it some kind of anti-piracy measure? I would understand if that was the case but it's visibly affecting my streaming quality. Even the 720p feed casting from the iPhone app would be superior to what I've currently got if the framerate weren't so poor. 


Anything I can try? 


thank you!

Expert 3

When I pause on the Now TV stick I see the blotchy image, but when I play it disappears.


I can’t do it right now, but it would be worthwhile putting some images up.


yes, that blotchy image when pausing is the source of the issue. if you look at the original post of this topic, i have a picture of the pause screen that you describe.


the problem for me & others seems to be that when resuming the content, the blotchy image doesn't fully go away. you can still see it when the football plays, especially on the green pitch, and it ruins the quality of the stream. 


this makes me think it's a nowtv software bug rather than anything else - or the way our tv's are interacting with what the nowtv software puts out. 


it's as though the opacity of that blotchy image is turned down to 5% or something when resuming content instead of fully turning off. 

Expert 3

That’s what is see on the screen when paused, but no issue when it plays.  What does it look like when playing?


here's a little video to show it:


you can see it clearest around the halfway line at the top around 0:33. when the camera pans, you can see that there are semi-transparent blobs that stay in the same position. it doesn't show up particularly well on this video but i can assure you that it makes the stream look noticeably poor quality.

Expert 3

@branflakes yes, I see it.  Not noticed that on either of my TVs.  Will take a closer look tonight.

Anonymous User
Not applicable



Agreed, we shouldn't have to purchase a 3rd party stick to avoid the issue but i would be tempted if it did cure the problem. I am going to check my Samsung TV again tonight see if the problem shows up direct through the app on that.


SweetBlitz's reply makes me wonder if this is an issue on every NowTV stream no matter the device or TV used. Various factors seem to make it more or less noticable but there non the less. Maybe the vast majority of people haven't noticed it or aren't bothered by it.


I shall be kicking off my complaint again.

Expert 3


Not an a issue on playback for me with now stick & Panasonic tv.  Here are my images.


normal playback - perfect.  Used constant colour to make sure.




paused - the blocking at the bottom but no big issue for me




the blocky screen when I rewind/fast forward, but it only appears for a short time




Elite 3

@branflakes while I appreciate this doesn't help you, my stream is absolutely crystal clear.



So then you have to ask the question, if others don't have the problem, and NowTV can't see a problem with their equipment, what's different about the equipment or location of the few people that are reporting it?


Are you all in a similar location and connecting to the same data centre (server)? Do you have the same TV? Are you using TruMotion or similar interpellation software that's built into the TV? Are you using the same ISP?


I'll hazard a guess that it's a compression artifact or your TVs software. Someone in another thread says he sees that when his stick is used on his 4k TV but when he moves the stick to an older non smart TV, the effect disappears.



thanks for the helpful response. yes it's very peculiar why it just occurs for select people.


it seems to be related to a deliberate overlay on the pause screen (see the very first post) which then doesn't fully go away when the pause stream goes away. 


i am wondering whether it might be my TV which is non-smart and quite old. if i had another tv i would experiment!