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iPlayer downloads now only being offered in sd1?



 
 
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  #1  
Old April 15th 18, 03:30 AM posted to uk.tech.digital-tv
Johnny B Good[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 513
Default iPlayer downloads now only being offered in sd1?

Not one of my Saturday night's selection of downloads included any hd1
(1280 by 720) offerings. Every single last one being sd1 (960 by 540).
Some were expected to be sd1 such as "Dad's Army" and "Insect Worlds"
whilst recently made programmes that would typically be available in hd1
format such as "Gettys: The World's Richest Art Dynasty" (copyright 2018)
were also restricted to sd1 as were repeats that I'd downloaded
previously in hd1 format such as the "From Andy Pandy to Zebedee: The
Golden Age of Children's Television" documentary.

It looks for all the world as though the iPlayer concession has suddenly
introduced a policy of "No hd1 downloads allowed". I have seen a similar
short changing effect on an irregular and random basis in the past but
repeat requests hours to a day or two later have usually resolved this
issue (but not always, sad to say).

What makes this event out of the ordinary is the fact that all seven
programmes downloaded by get_iplayer were so afflicted by this
restriction. Out of curiosity, I forced a repeat download of the
documentary programme "Living with the Brainy Bunch" which I'd first
downloaded on the 12th in hd1 format. The repeat download was in hd1
format as before, so if there has been a policy change then this result
would seem to be "The exception that proves the rule". More likely though
is that they haven't gotten round to pulling the hd1 version off the
media streamer's file server.

Worryingly, this reduction of download quality seems to have been
building up during the past few weeks where repeat attempts many days
later have still resulted in an sd1 download (aborted by me as soon as I
could see that I was still being fobbed off with a sub standard
definition version).

The most notable recent example of "hd1 failure" being the first "Have I
Got A Bit More News For You" episode of series 55 since the earlier
series downloads during the previous two years or so have all been hd1
downloads. This is the first time since I started downloading this
programme using get_iplayer that I have seen it restricted to sd1 quality.

I take it that I'm not the only one seeing this change for the worse in
regard of iPlayer downloads, just the first to raise the issue in this
news group. Does anyone have any more information about this situation or
any helpful comments to offer?

--
Johnny B Good
  #2  
Old April 15th 18, 07:20 AM posted to uk.tech.digital-tv
Brian Gaff
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 7,250
Default iPlayer downloads now only being offered in sd1?

But apart from easing the stresses on their servers, what possible point
would there be to this really?
It would seem a retrograde step.
Its more likely the usual cock up that bbc makes when new brooms take over
and nobody watches the output properly.
Its a symptom of our modern world, nobody cares at all, just keep taking
the money till the contract is taken away boys.

Brian

--
----- -
This newsgroup posting comes to you directly from...
The Sofa of Brian Gaff...

Blind user, so no pictures please!
"Johnny B Good" wrote in message
...
Not one of my Saturday night's selection of downloads included any hd1
(1280 by 720) offerings. Every single last one being sd1 (960 by 540).
Some were expected to be sd1 such as "Dad's Army" and "Insect Worlds"
whilst recently made programmes that would typically be available in hd1
format such as "Gettys: The World's Richest Art Dynasty" (copyright 2018)
were also restricted to sd1 as were repeats that I'd downloaded
previously in hd1 format such as the "From Andy Pandy to Zebedee: The
Golden Age of Children's Television" documentary.

It looks for all the world as though the iPlayer concession has suddenly
introduced a policy of "No hd1 downloads allowed". I have seen a similar
short changing effect on an irregular and random basis in the past but
repeat requests hours to a day or two later have usually resolved this
issue (but not always, sad to say).

What makes this event out of the ordinary is the fact that all seven
programmes downloaded by get_iplayer were so afflicted by this
restriction. Out of curiosity, I forced a repeat download of the
documentary programme "Living with the Brainy Bunch" which I'd first
downloaded on the 12th in hd1 format. The repeat download was in hd1
format as before, so if there has been a policy change then this result
would seem to be "The exception that proves the rule". More likely though
is that they haven't gotten round to pulling the hd1 version off the
media streamer's file server.

Worryingly, this reduction of download quality seems to have been
building up during the past few weeks where repeat attempts many days
later have still resulted in an sd1 download (aborted by me as soon as I
could see that I was still being fobbed off with a sub standard
definition version).

The most notable recent example of "hd1 failure" being the first "Have I
Got A Bit More News For You" episode of series 55 since the earlier
series downloads during the previous two years or so have all been hd1
downloads. This is the first time since I started downloading this
programme using get_iplayer that I have seen it restricted to sd1 quality.

I take it that I'm not the only one seeing this change for the worse in
regard of iPlayer downloads, just the first to raise the issue in this
news group. Does anyone have any more information about this situation or
any helpful comments to offer?

--
Johnny B Good



  #3  
Old April 15th 18, 08:45 AM posted to uk.tech.digital-tv
Robin[_8_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 506
Default iPlayer downloads now only being offered in sd1?

I don't see how it is a cock-up if the BBC change iPlayer in a way which
(probably accidentally) stops people doing something iPlayer was never
intended to do. I can still watch iPlayer in 1280x720p so it seems to
me it is working as it was meant to.



On 15/04/2018 08:20, Brian Gaff wrote:
But apart from easing the stresses on their servers, what possible point
would there be to this really?
It would seem a retrograde step.
Its more likely the usual cock up that bbc makes when new brooms take over
and nobody watches the output properly.
Its a symptom of our modern world, nobody cares at all, just keep taking
the money till the contract is taken away boys.

Brian



--
Robin
reply-to address is (intended to be) valid
  #4  
Old April 15th 18, 01:21 PM posted to uk.tech.digital-tv
Brian-Gaff
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 576
Default iPlayer downloads now only being offered in sd1?

Who says that it was not meant to allow hd downloads though,. For some time
high quality downloads of audio have been available, have they stopped as
well, or are you saying that the good spec was actually not intended to be
use, in which case it was shoddy practice to allow it in the first place.
of course you can watch hd in real time but since these seem to buffer even
on fast connections could it be that the bbc are in fact running out of
online bandwidth?
Brian

--
From the Sofa of Brian Gaff Reply address is active
Remember, if you don't like where I post
or what I say, you don't have to
read my posts! :-)
"Robin" wrote in message
...
I don't see how it is a cock-up if the BBC change iPlayer in a way which
(probably accidentally) stops people doing something iPlayer was never
intended to do. I can still watch iPlayer in 1280x720p so it seems to me
it is working as it was meant to.



On 15/04/2018 08:20, Brian Gaff wrote:
But apart from easing the stresses on their servers, what possible point
would there be to this really?
It would seem a retrograde step.
Its more likely the usual cock up that bbc makes when new brooms take
over
and nobody watches the output properly.
Its a symptom of our modern world, nobody cares at all, just keep
taking
the money till the contract is taken away boys.

Brian



--
Robin
reply-to address is (intended to be) valid



  #5  
Old April 15th 18, 10:52 AM posted to uk.tech.digital-tv
Max Demian
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 3,970
Default iPlayer downloads now only being offered in sd1?

On 15/04/2018 08:20, Brian Gaff wrote:
But apart from easing the stresses on their servers, what possible point
would there be to this really?
It would seem a retrograde step.


It's to punish you for (potentially) violating copyright. Like the way
the EU banned pearl light bulbs to punish us for using incandescents.

--
Max Demian
  #6  
Old April 15th 18, 08:12 AM posted to uk.tech.digital-tv
Jim Lesurf[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 4,326
Default iPlayer downloads now only being offered in sd1?

In article , Johnny B Good
wrote:
Not one of my Saturday night's selection of downloads included any hd1
(1280 by 720) offerings. Every single last one being sd1 (960 by 540).


I'm not sure, but are you mainly using hls?

My experience thus far is that the 1280x720 25fps versions seem to be
ceasing, but the 50fps versions have been available.[1] I've been using hls
for fetching but I'm not sure if some other transfer method will still get
the 25fps version. Been meaning to ask on the gip list and look at the
table of modes, etc.

The 50fps versions do have 'better' sound, but mean much bigger files.

Jim

[1] e.g. the "Young Musician of the Year" progs seem available as the
larger files - which is sensible in these cases to get the best sound.

--
Please use the address on the audiomisc page if you wish to email me.
Electronics https://www.st-andrews.ac.uk/~www_pa...o/electron.htm
biog http://jcgl.orpheusweb.co.uk/history/ups_and_downs.html
Audio Misc http://www.audiomisc.co.uk/index.html

  #7  
Old April 16th 18, 01:40 AM posted to uk.tech.digital-tv
Johnny B Good[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 513
Default iPlayer downloads now only being offered in sd1?

On Sun, 15 Apr 2018 09:12:30 +0100, Jim Lesurf wrote:

In article , Johnny B Good
wrote:
Not one of my Saturday night's selection of downloads included any hd1
(1280 by 720) offerings. Every single last one being sd1 (960 by 540).


I'm not sure, but are you mainly using hls?


The successful hd1 downloads have all been, istr, hlshd1. I'm using the
default "best quality" option. ISTR my early attempts at 50fps downloads
mainly resulted in 25fps downloads instead. All of the latest sd1
downloads have been hvfxsd1/bi meaning they've been supplied by the bimi?
server (the hlshd1/ak downloads have all come from the akamai server).
restricting to the akamai server doesn't get around the problem, I just
see hvfxsd1/ak downloads instead. Incidentally, whenever I've seen such
downloads, they generally been associated with 'Panic Grabs' of badly
topped and tailed playout server stream captures which then become
available a few hours to days later as hlshd1 downloads.


My experience thus far is that the 1280x720 25fps versions seem to be
ceasing, but the 50fps versions have been available.[1] I've been using
hls for fetching but I'm not sure if some other transfer method will
still get the 25fps version. Been meaning to ask on the gip list and
look at the table of modes, etc.


If you do discover a 'magic incantation' to d/l 1280 by 720, whether 25
or 50 fps, please let us all know. :-)

AFAIAA, gip TV downloads default to 'best possible' and my earlier
attempts to persuade gip to produce specifically better than 'best
possible' have been a resounding failure in all bar perhaps one or two
cases over two years ago now when I first started using gip.


The 50fps versions do have 'better' sound, but mean much bigger files.


[1] e.g. the "Young Musician of the Year" progs seem available as the
larger files - which is sensible in these cases to get the best sound.


The sound quality on the smaller sd1/hd1 25fps downloads is quite
adequate to my elderly ears so I'm thankful enough for the 1GB/hour 1280
by 720 25fps versions as an improvement over the 960 by 540 rescaled to
720 by 576 DVB-T broadcasts that I used to record off air using Kaffeine.

These days I just use Kaffeine to create a 'To Do List' from its
recording schedule the entries of which I edit to 5 minute snippets. This
saves disk usage and produces suitably named 5 minute media files from
which I can copy and paste their edited filenames to the less helpfully
named iPlayer downloads.

I did manage to get the dual tuner DVB-T2 PCIe adapter working on a test
box some 6 months or more back but working around the encrypted EPG
entries and dealing with the large 1920 by 1080 TS recordings proved too
much of a pain as well as a doubling of disk space consumption so I put
the DVB-T2 PVR project on hold preferring to carry on with iPlayer's
hlshd1 more economic of disk space downloads.

If the iPlayer concession is now withdrawing it's half HD downloading
service, I'll have to have another go at sorting out a PC based DVB-T2 PVR
solution of one sort or another, preferably with an improved version of
Kaffeine that can either decrypt the EPG tables internally or else allow
a third party add-on to fix this particular issue. I'd also want to be
able to top and tail padded recordings via a simple GUI where I can mark
an in and an out point for the video processor to 'convert' from ts to mp4
or mkv in the same neat way that MpegStreamClip did (still does) for mpg
ts recordings when converting them into mpg ps media files (ready to be
converted to mkv using Handbrake).

--
Johnny B Good
  #8  
Old April 16th 18, 12:57 PM posted to uk.tech.digital-tv
Jim Lesurf[_2_]
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 4,326
Default iPlayer downloads now only being offered in sd1?

In article , Johnny B Good
wrote:

If you do discover a 'magic incantation' to d/l 1280 by 720, whether 25
or 50 fps, please let us all know. :-)


I've continued to use --modes=hvfhd and this worked a day or two ago OK.
But it is HLS, so I am wondering if it might cease *if* the BBC have
decided to weed out HLS. And I am using an old version of gip, so the
current version may be different in some way.

For me the snag is that I don't *want* 50fps, but 25fps. So I'm watching
the current gip list discussions on frame rate conversions. The anoyance
their if if we have to fetch 50fps and files twice the size we want, and
then spend time having to convert them. PITA^2.

Jim


Jim

--
Please use the address on the audiomisc page if you wish to email me.
Electronics https://www.st-andrews.ac.uk/~www_pa...o/electron.htm
biog http://jcgl.orpheusweb.co.uk/history/ups_and_downs.html
Audio Misc http://www.audiomisc.co.uk/index.html

  #9  
Old April 16th 18, 04:26 PM posted to uk.tech.digital-tv
Java Jive[_2_]
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Posts: 1,774
Default iPlayer downloads now only being offered in sd1?

On 16/04/2018 13:57, Jim Lesurf wrote:

For me the snag is that I don't *want* 50fps, but 25fps. So I'm watching
the current gip list discussions on frame rate conversions.


In the light of recent difficulties, I'm trying the following:
--tvmode hafhd,hlshd,hvfhd,hvfxsd,hafvhigh,hlsvhigh

This will choose the first of the following it finds:
hafhd,hlshd 1280x720 25fps
hvfhd 1280x720 50fps
hvfxsd 960x540 25fps
hafvhigh,hlsvhigh 832x468 25fps

The anoyance
their if if we have to fetch 50fps and files twice the size we want, and
then spend time having to convert them. PITA^2.


I'll not bother to convert them to 25fps, I can always delete something
from the "ToBeDeleted" folder, or else buy a bigger disk for my servers!

The things that really annoy me a

:-( The lack of consistency across a series, even when they're just
showing repeats of old programming. I've already highlighted an example
above, and mentioned others in the thread I linked. I wouldn't've
thought it too much to ask that an entire series should be available in
the same, constant format. Then there are the numerous times when they
repeat some episodes of old series, but not others. Lucy Worsley's
recently repeated series about royal sickness did not have the final
episode broadcast. Someone has also mentioned an absurd Dad's Army example.

:-( The lack of choice. I can see that the BBC wants to standardise
their offerings, but they need to accommodate a range of different
programming, and, as in the discussion I linked, when you start to think
about this in detail, it soon becomes apparent that one size doesn't fit
all. Given a chance to increase either the spatial or the temporal
resolution, but for bandwidth reasons not both, which should you do?
For slow moving stuff - landscapes, programmes about art,
architecture, etc - I would prefer an increase in spatial resolution
to 1080p, but for fast action - action movies, sport, etc - then it
seems from the discussion that an increase in temporal resolution to
50fps is better. I think the BBC should choose the most appropriate
format for the programme content, not attempt to stuff all programming
into the same pigeon-hole, regardless of its content.
  #10  
Old April 16th 18, 04:39 PM posted to uk.tech.digital-tv
NY
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 1,329
Default iPlayer downloads now only being offered in sd1?

"Jim Lesurf" wrote in message
...
In article , Johnny B Good
wrote:

If you do discover a 'magic incantation' to d/l 1280 by 720, whether 25
or 50 fps, please let us all know. :-)


I've continued to use --modes=hvfhd and this worked a day or two ago OK.
But it is HLS, so I am wondering if it might cease *if* the BBC have
decided to weed out HLS. And I am using an old version of gip, so the
current version may be different in some way.

For me the snag is that I don't *want* 50fps, but 25fps. So I'm watching
the current gip list discussions on frame rate conversions. The anoyance
their if if we have to fetch 50fps and files twice the size we want, and
then spend time having to convert them. PITA^2.


Why is it that iPlayer uses various unusual resolutions, rather than 704x576
for SD and 1920x1080 for HD, as for broadcast TV?

 



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