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toonbon
Level 8

Determining quality of source material.

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Is there a way on my Roku TV to determine the quality of the original material, i.e., 1080, 4K, etc.  I understand that the path to my TV may have bandwidth limitations that determine what I actually see.  I 'd just like to know what the original content was coded at.

Thanks

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StreamerUser
Community Streaming Expert

Re: Determining quality of source material.

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That really requires a multilayered answer, but the short answer is "rarely at the playback device level".

Some apps provide quality availability tags (e.g. 4K/UHD/HDR/HDR10/DV/Atmos/5.1/etc) prior to playback, depending on system configuration - that doesnt mean you get that at playback, just whats available based upon the current system configuration in conjunction with the quality of the server content/app functionality.

A much smaller number of apps provide playback bitrate and/or resolution info (e.g. NetFlix, YouTube, YouTube TV), depending on app platform sometimes (e.g. Hulu, Prime).

But all of that can be relatively meaningless, since we dont know the source material master quality, what tools were used in the digital transfer, what codecs are used in the transmission (a highly efficient codec could use a much lower bitrate than a less efficient codec for the same or better objective/subjective visual quality), etc.

So (for example) you can enable NF's stats/info overlay (press Options twice in the main NF UI), and verify you are getting the max bitrate/resolution for 4K DV content (15.25Mbps/2160p), but that doesnt really tell you the audio bitrate (up to 640Kbps for DD+5.1 and up to 768Kbps for DD+/Atmos) at all, which codec was used, etc.

Recent versions of the Hulu app will tell you generic playback quality info "5.1" "HD" "4K" but it doesnt tell you any bitrate information.

Prime (used to on some platforms) tell you the current video playback quality ("HD" "1080p HD" "1080p HDR" etc.. ) but now only does it on the FireTV devices.

You're just not really going to know what "the original content was coded at" though you can make some educated guesses based on blu-ray transfers/releases/reported digital masters/etc - all you can ever really know (at best) is the playback output quality, such as what the current bitrate/resolution/framerate/codecs are, and thats in the best of cases (e.g. YouTube, YouTube TV with "states for nerds" enabled).

StreamerUser
Roku Community Streaming Expert

Help others find this answer and click "Accept as Solution."
If you appreciate my answer, maybe give me a Kudo.

I am not a Roku employee.

View solution in original post

1 REPLY 1\
StreamerUser
Community Streaming Expert

Re: Determining quality of source material.

Jump to solution

That really requires a multilayered answer, but the short answer is "rarely at the playback device level".

Some apps provide quality availability tags (e.g. 4K/UHD/HDR/HDR10/DV/Atmos/5.1/etc) prior to playback, depending on system configuration - that doesnt mean you get that at playback, just whats available based upon the current system configuration in conjunction with the quality of the server content/app functionality.

A much smaller number of apps provide playback bitrate and/or resolution info (e.g. NetFlix, YouTube, YouTube TV), depending on app platform sometimes (e.g. Hulu, Prime).

But all of that can be relatively meaningless, since we dont know the source material master quality, what tools were used in the digital transfer, what codecs are used in the transmission (a highly efficient codec could use a much lower bitrate than a less efficient codec for the same or better objective/subjective visual quality), etc.

So (for example) you can enable NF's stats/info overlay (press Options twice in the main NF UI), and verify you are getting the max bitrate/resolution for 4K DV content (15.25Mbps/2160p), but that doesnt really tell you the audio bitrate (up to 640Kbps for DD+5.1 and up to 768Kbps for DD+/Atmos) at all, which codec was used, etc.

Recent versions of the Hulu app will tell you generic playback quality info "5.1" "HD" "4K" but it doesnt tell you any bitrate information.

Prime (used to on some platforms) tell you the current video playback quality ("HD" "1080p HD" "1080p HDR" etc.. ) but now only does it on the FireTV devices.

You're just not really going to know what "the original content was coded at" though you can make some educated guesses based on blu-ray transfers/releases/reported digital masters/etc - all you can ever really know (at best) is the playback output quality, such as what the current bitrate/resolution/framerate/codecs are, and thats in the best of cases (e.g. YouTube, YouTube TV with "states for nerds" enabled).

StreamerUser
Roku Community Streaming Expert

Help others find this answer and click "Accept as Solution."
If you appreciate my answer, maybe give me a Kudo.

I am not a Roku employee.

View solution in original post