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garyw335
Aspiring Contributor
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Message 1 of 8

Sky Sports recording pixelated and unwatchable

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I recently subscribed to Sky Sports HD channels on BT YouView. I received confirmation that the channels would be activated on Friday 10 August and having checked on Friday evening that the channels were indeed working correctly I set a recording for the Tottenham vs Newcastle match this afternoon (Sat 11 Aug). I’ve just tried to watch the recording and it’s completely pixelated and distorted so much so that it is completely unwatchable. I have just recorded another programme on the same channel and it’s fine so I’m not quite sure what the problem is.


I’ve spoken to someone in customer support (offsore based) via online chat and they suggested I perform a factory reset to prevent the problem from reoccurring. Having been a longtime user of YouView (Retail, Plusnet and now BT) I’m not convinced that that advice is actually correct but whatever.

Bearing in mind I subscribed to Sky Sports several weeks earlier than I otherwise would have done specifically to watch this match it’s fair to say I’m pretty annoyed. My attempt at getting a refund from BT via the online chat for my Sky Sports subscription resulted in a ‘computer says no’ please call our support number scripted answer. Could one of the BT staff who moderate this forum please take ownership of my refund request so I don’t have to go through hellish process of trying explain all this to the offshore customer service department over the phone. Thanks in advance.

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Distinguished Guru
Distinguished Guru
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Message 2 of 8

Re: Sky Sports recording pixelated and unwatchable

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A factory reset of the Youview box would be very much a last resort attempt at a resolution of a Youview box behaving abnormally and of course the problem could be elsewhere. If the playback of your recording always exhibits the same problems at the same points in the recording then the problems probably occured at the time of recording. Was the entire programme recorded  and was it pixilated  for the entire duration  ? - i think it was a  3hour 45 minute programme.

I see that last year there was  this thread

https://community.bt.com/t5/BT-Fibre-broadband/Infinity-broadband-disconnects-when-phone-rings-noisy...

did that get resoloved or have the intermittent problems continued ?

 

 

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garyw335
Aspiring Contributor
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Message 3 of 8

Re: Sky Sports recording pixelated and unwatchable

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Hi Distinguished Guru,

The recording in question is distorted / pixelated in it’s entirety. As such the problem, as you say, most likely occurred at the time of recording.

The problem with the broadband is a long story. Yes it was initially resolved although it wasn’t clear that was anything BT engineers did or it simply resolved of its own accord. The broadband was then fine for nearly a year. More recently however the problem reoccurred during the recent heatwave. The problem is almost certainly weather related, the hotter the weather the worse it gets and it always seems to get worse mid morning when the weather starts to heat up. Since the weather has cooled over the past few days it’s generally been ok. I was going to report it to BT but after more than 10 engineer visits and countless phone calls I just couldn’t face it. We’re getting FTTP next year from CityFibre so I didn’t think it was worth the hassle.

I realise that, since the subscription cgannels are delivered via IP, my broadband could be the problem. But as I say it’s generally been fine over the past few days and I get a steady 38 down, 7 up,
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garyw335
Aspiring Contributor
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Message 4 of 8

Re: Sky Sports recording pixelated and unwatchable

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This problem is still not resolved. Please could someone from BT help me!?

The problem is that when programmes on Sky Sports and Sky Sports HD channels are recorded while the YouView box is in standby the recordings are pixelated / distorted and unwatchable. However if I switch the YouView box on while the recording is in progress and switch to the channel that is being recorded the recording from that point onward is fine. I can also watch programmes live on Sky Sports and Sky Sports HD channels without any problems. I can also record all other channels including subscription channels (SD and HD) without any problems. The problem is only with Sky Sports and Sky Sports HD channels and it has been that way ever since I subscribed to those channels several weeks ago.

I have tried rebooting my router (several times) and a full reset of the router using the pin hole on the back, all to no avail. I have also done a full maintenance mode reset of the YouView box which resolved the issue temporarily on the first recording I tried only for the picture to then become pixelated / distorted around six minutes into the recording. Since then all subsequent recordings have had the problem from the beginning of the recording i.e., I am back to square one.

Since I subscribed to Sky Sports specifically so I can record programmes and watch them at a time of my choosing I am effectively paying a lot of money for a service which I am not receiving. Some advice as well as some kind of compensation would be welcome!
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garyw335
Aspiring Contributor
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Message 5 of 8

Re: Sky Sports recording pixelated and unwatchable

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Anyone!?

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BT TV Expert
BT TV Expert
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Message 6 of 8

Re: Sky Sports recording pixelated and unwatchable

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Hi @garyw335

Sorry to hear you are having problems with the service. If you're able to drop me a PM with your telephone number I can take a look.

Thank you,

BT TV ExpertGemma_P
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garyw335
Aspiring Contributor
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Message 7 of 8

Re: Sky Sports recording pixelated and unwatchable

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Thanks @Gemma_P PM sent.

I should also mention, for the benefit of anyone else with similar issues reading this thread, that having done some further testing I’ve discovered the problem only affects Sky Sports HD. The Sky Sports SD channel is ok. However if a recording is in progress on Sky Sports HD while the box is in standby it will also corrupt any other concurrent recording on any of the other subscription (IP) channels (SD or HD) but not broadcast (Freeview) channels which are unaffected.

As I have already mentioned this isn’t a broadband/bandwidth issue as all other subscription channels including HD channels record fine, singularly, or two concurrent recordings, so long as one of them isn’t the Sky Sports HD channel.

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garyw335
Aspiring Contributor
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Message 8 of 8

Re: Sky Sports recording pixelated and unwatchable

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For the benefit of anyone else with similar issues reading this thread, this issue was resolved by connecting the YouView box directly to the router (BT Homehub). Or at least that’s the short answer.

The longer answer is that between my homehub and the YouView box there was a Devolo 500 homeplug and two NetGear Gigabit network switches. It was these or rather a combination of these that caused the problem. The homeplug in of itself wasn’t a problem but in combination with the network switches it was a problem. Likewise a single network switch if connected to the router (bypassing the homeplug) wasn’t a problem but two network switches was a problem. 

Here is a summary of the set ups I tried and the results.

  1. Working - Connection to router (BT homehub) via a single cable
  2. Working - Connection to router (BT homehub) via one network switch
  3. Working - Connection to homeplug via a single cable
  4. Not working - Connection to router (BT homehub) via two network switches
  5. Not working - Connection to homeplug via a one network switch
  6. Not working - Connection to homeplug via two network switches

It is pretty clear from my testing that it isn’t a bandwidth issue. BT think that it may be the network switches and/or homeplug and/or some combination of the two are unable to buffer the higher bitrate of the Sky Sports HD channel (apparently Sky Sports HD uses significantly more bandwidth, just over 14MB, whereas other HD subscription channels only use 5 to 9MB). If the buffer was just over, they think that would explain why it also corrupts the second channel. So basically a resourcing issue for multicast over a certain bitrate on the switch. At least that is what they suspect. 

I’m not quite sure in that case why I can record two HD subscription channels so long as one of them isn’t Sky Sports HD as that would require more resources than recording Sky Sports HD without any concurrent subscription channel recordings and it also doesn’t explain why recording Sky Sports HD is fine when the box is switched on (as opposed to standby).

It’s all very peculiar but at least I now have a solution albeit longer term it will mean drilling a hole through a wall to route a network cable into the lounge or purchasing another homeplug purely for the YouView box.