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Anonymous User
Not applicable

Blurried picture / low resolution

If this helps someone great, otherwise its just to document how I'm having a better time with Now TV lately.  I hope it lasts!

Symptoms:

 

  • Perfect video quality for the trial period.  Then my credit card gets charged and suddenly the problems kick in.
  • Guaranteed to drop out during the evening.  Earlier in the day, and I haven't watch too many movies then, the quality was fine.
  • Random buffering - especially at the end of a movie (honestly took about 20 minutes to watch the last 10 minutes of one film).
  • Very blurred or blurry, pixelated picture quality.
  • Standard Definition or less.  Other users on this forum have mentioned low resolution and '240p'.  Wanting to answer the question 'what actual quality is this fuzzy messy on the screen?' I compared the quality against a HD YouTube video deliberately set to 144p (you can do that from the settings/cog icon in the lower right corner).  144p is actually closer in comparison.
  • Cannot read the onscreen text when a intro or backstory (in text) is presented during the start of a movie.  For example during the intro to the film K-19: The Widowmaker there is text on the screen.  I found a YouTube video of the K-19 intro and if I set the quality to 144p it's a extremely good match to the quality I saw...

Screen Shot 2018 03 21 at 19 50 09

 

  • However the audio, during the low quality periods, was perfect.  Had this been radio I would not have noticed.
  • The Now TV box was across the room from the wireless router and hence connected to the Wi-Fi.  Note: This was exactly the same as during the trial period, where the picture was perfect.  Nothing physically changed/moved to cause the signal to degrade.
  • I did often get (still do get the odd one) glitching/hiccup/momentary screech sound in the audio problem others are mentioning.

Changes I've made:

 

  • Moved the box and TV across the room and dug through old boxes to find an RJ-45 (network) cable so the Now TV box is now on a wired connection.
    Result: no change, still blurry/buffering.  Feeling: I've just torn the house apart for a network cable and [beeping] box still isn't [beeping] working?  Argghhh.  Still the room's Feng shui has probably improved a bit.

  • Saw mentions of 'disable network ping'.  Followed article https://help.nowtv.com/article/error-code-014-now-tv-box-stick. 
    Result: no change, still blurry/buffering.  Feeling: Rage building/I want my money back.

  • Gathered that BT broadband customers with BT Home HUB need to disable the 'Smart Setup' feature as per http://bt.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/44328/~/what-is-smart-setup-on-the-bt-hub%3F-how-can-....
    Result: no change.  Feeling: what the [beeping] heck is going on.  It working fine on the trial pass!

  • Stumbled upon some information about bitrates can be changed in https://help.nowtv.com/article/troubleshooting-now-tv-box-stick.
    Result: no change.  Feeling: cheated that bitrates is an option but it's not applicable to any of the new boxes as they use ABS which is adaptive bitrates.  D'oh!

  • Read about checking your broadband speed.  The old excuses hey?  Tested at 60 Mbps.  That's fine.  Considered standing at the bottom of the drive and waving down a passing BT Openreach van just to grill the driver on any recent network changes in the area.  Decided against it.
    Result: no change.  Feeling: On the Kübler-Ross model of grief I was at stage four (Depression).  Not quite stage five (acceptance) - there must be something else.  Clearly it's at Now TV's end or their network.  I had Netflix and still have Amazon Prime video - both had/have no problems and aren't running at the same time.  What changes could I make to this little black box?

  • Flicking through the menu I saw that you can set the resolution to 720p (Home > Settings > Display Type > '720p HD TV').  Well considering I was generally getting 144p, I'd be happy to see 720p!  Made the change.  Restarted the router for good measure.  Hit 'play' on a movie.
    Result: No ch...wait, hang on a mo.  Did I just watch that whole film without one single drop in quality?  Not one buffering?  Yes.  Can't be.  Let's watch something else....same.  Something else...same.  No drop in quality.  So far, so good.  And the difference between 1080p and 720p?  I couldn't tell the difference.

Going back to my first point: Perfect video quality for the trial period.  My credit card gets charged and suddenly the problems kick in.  If Now TV would like me to test if a free account doesn't experience the video quality, I would reluctantly, accept and promise to report back in a couple of years after some serious testing.

 

TL;DR: Set the display type quality to 720p.  Do you even notice a difference in quality?  And does this resolve the issue for anyone else?  I don't work for Now TV so I can't offer next steps - just give feedback on the forum so they know.

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5 Replies
Anonymous User
Not applicable

Re: Blurried picture / low resolution

I have all the issues you have, and I have done everything you have done and it is still unwatchable. I dropped down to 720p and managed to watch a whole movie, but later that night while watching Sky Sports news the 1970's VHS image quality returned. Nowtv dont seem to have a technical department/customer adviser, and dont seem to care...

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Anonymous User
Not applicable

Re: Blurried picture / low resolution

@Anonymous Useryou could also try a full hard reset on the box https://help.nowtv.com/article/hard-factory-reset-now-tv-box-stick (you'll need to log in again afterwards).

 

Then unplug your router from the power supply for at least 30 seconds (don't just restart it - disconnect the power and allow any internal capacitors discharge fully).  Perhaps overkill but I think it works better and re-establishes a better connection to the ISP.

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Anonymous User
Not applicable

Re: Blurried picture / low resolution

Its unwachable and I too experience the 144p quality of 70's tv all the time. It is total and utter ######! I suspect this is to encourage more people onto SKY tv with a dish. Terrible service, terrible quality, terrible customer service. 

Peter_Blandford
Advocate

Re: Blurried picture / low resolution

Hi,

 

Now TV does not show up on the Microsoft store for me.

 

Any help would be appreciated.

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gavs82008
Legend 5
Legend 5

Re: Blurried picture / low resolution

@Peter_Blandford 

Simple answer is the app got removed from the Microsoft store last year.

For windows or Mac you have to download the player from the website.

 

https://help.nowtv.com/article/what-is-now-player

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