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> Astro byond Version 13A, All about Astro Malaysia offerings

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joshhd
post Yesterday, 05:37 PM

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QUOTE(OneXX @ Dec 14 2019, 03:53 PM)
hi guys...i want to ask something...before this my astro subscription is family pack hd+sports+1 mini =RM122.90...but today i got december bill suddenly my bill become s value pack 4 =RM113.40...all my channel remain the same except i got 3 more channel...tayangan hebat thangathirai and celestial movies...im worried because i get more channel and my bill is cheaper...astro never told me anything about this change

user posted image
*

Try ask your family members (according to account holder name), and see if they agreed to any Astro package change recently.
Anyhow, you're paying less than already is. So why worry for paying lesser while getting a few more channels? biggrin.gif

Do note that upon changing to package bundles like Value Packs, you'll have 6 months contract.
Meaning you can't cancel or change this Value Pack for the next 6 months, otherwise penalty will be imposed.
OneXX
post Yesterday, 06:26 PM

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QUOTE(joshhd @ Dec 14 2019, 05:37 PM)
Try ask your family members (according to account holder name), and see if they agreed to any Astro package change recently.
Anyhow, you're paying less than already is. So why worry for paying lesser while getting a few more channels?  biggrin.gif

Do note that upon changing to package bundles like Value Packs, you'll have 6 months contract.
Meaning you can't cancel or change this Value Pack for the next 6 months, otherwise penalty will be imposed.
*
actually i'm the only one who in charge for this astro..when i check again on the astro website it looks like value pack 4 is fans pack..maybe astro upgrade my account to fans pack because its the same thing as my previous ala carte subsbription...except its cheaper and getting 3 extra channel.. rclxm9.gif rclxm9.gif rclxm9.gif

This post has been edited by OneXX: Yesterday, 06:28 PM
Uncle 6
post Yesterday, 07:44 PM

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QUOTE(westlife @ Dec 14 2019, 02:15 PM)
actually I subscribe Astro just purely to watch and record old tvb drama. mainly on tvb classic channel and xing he. Xing he can get on njoi for rm20 a month. Only prob is tvb classic channel cannot that’s the reason why I still subscribe to Astro as of today. But since one to two years back Astro has changed the display ratio of the old tvb drama, meaning that they make the old tvb drama a box within the entire tv display. So now it is totally not on full screen mode for old tvb drama. I think they do it becos of 4K tv which many households are having 4K tv which if display SD picture on 4K it will be very blurry.

I think time to cancel the Astro. Just go for njoi with xing he rm20 monthly. Save the monthly close to rm120 cost on a tv that I hardly watch nowadays also.
*
VERY LOYAL TVB FAN. thumbup.gif
notworthy.gif notworthy.gif notworthy.gif
westlife
post Yesterday, 08:28 PM

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QUOTE(OneXX @ Dec 14 2019, 03:53 PM)
hi guys...i want to ask something...before this my astro subscription is family pack hd+sports+1 mini =RM122.90...but today i got december bill suddenly my bill become s value pack 4 =RM113.40...all my channel remain the same except i got 3 more channel...tayangan hebat thangathirai and celestial movies...im worried because i get more channel and my bill is cheaper...astro never told me anything about this change

user posted image
*
Astro so good? Auto reduces profit gain?
westlife
post Yesterday, 09:42 PM

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QUOTE(joshhd @ Dec 14 2019, 05:32 PM)
Once you switched to Njoi, you can't use PVR functions anymore, and you can no longer watch your previously recorded programmes. They will disable it for your account.
Alternatively, you can consider cancel all Astro packages you have, then remain Astro Family pack + Dynasty pack = Total RM81.95/month
Do note that this does not include HD service.

-----------

What you're seeing on TVB Classic channel now (as shown on picture below), is called windowboxed. Nothing gonna do with Ultra Box or your TV problem. As usual, it is Astro's own problem.

user posted image
This is how it looks like on 4:3 TV (old, big and fat CRT TV)

user posted image
This is how it looks like on 16:9 TV (flat screen TV, HD TV, UHD TVs like what you see today)

Don't contact Astro customer service and tell them about this windowbox, black bars, this and that...
They'll just tell you to use Astro remote control, press the aspect ratio button and make sure it's "Fit to screen", change to "LB Expand", make sure the TV Size is "16:9".
Still doesn't solve the issue? If you talk somemore, they'll arrange a technician to visit to your house to check, and charge you RM65 technical service fee. This is so Astro.
Basically, it's a waste of time. Relating irrelevant stuff. Be a smart consumer. Don't do that.  :thumbsup:

So how come channels like TVB Classic, Asian Action Channel (ch327), TVB Classic Movies (ch328) has this windowboxed problem? Here's why:

Firstly, there's this 2 common and basic aspect ratio used for TVs, which is 4:3 (pronounce as "four-by-three") and 16:9 (pronounce as "sixteen-by-nine").
Aspect ratio How does picture shape look like? Where is it commonly seen and used?
4:3 Square shape, like old CRT TVs Old TV shows in SD quality
16:9 Rectangular, or widescreen, just like the HD or UHD TV you see today Today's TV shows in HD or UHD quality
*4:3's "square" shape size are not to be confused with "Square" or "1:1" size as what you commonly see in photo sharing platforms like Instagram.

So far understand?
However, as channels are moving towards HD broadcasting, they have to transmit it in 16:9. So when it comes to displaying 4:3 content, there's some technical conflict that many people not aware of (in harsher words, lazy to bother).

1) The actual channel from channel provider is in 16:9 aspect ratio (presumably in HD), which looks like this:

user posted image

Because TVB Classic now broadcasts in native 16:9 aspect ratio, but because old TV shows (HK series) are in 4:3 aspect ratio, the channel provider (TVB) puts a letterbox (black bars) on left and right sides, so that the shape won't be stretched and distorted like below:

user posted image

*Simulated image of how it looks like if there's no letterbox used when showing a 4:3 shows on a 16:9 TV screen.
You like what you see? Well, some people don't mind as long it's "fit my entire 16:9 TV screen", even if the picture will turn out fat, huge and out of shape.

2) So now you know the channel provider transmits the channel in 16:9, but Astro did not change any display aspect ratio settings from their broadcasting side.
Either they lazy, or they don't care, or they think is no big deal, so why bother? Or they think it's normal because it's "4:3".  rclxms.gif
"They don't know about it" is not a good reason lor. Work in technical/broadcasting sector don't know about these? What are they doing? Sit down and wait for salary to come in?

So by default, when the channel or content is in 16:9, a letterbox (black bars on top and bottom) will appear.

user posted image
Letterbox + pillarbox = windowboxed (result as shown on first pic above)

Astro still uses 4:3 aspect ratio on all SD channels, except Disney Junior, which is so far I know, the only SD channel on Astro in native 16:9 aspect ratio.
More than half of all Astro customers are already using HD TV (16:9), so continue using 4:3 format isn't practical anymore.

What Astro can do?
> Just because it's SD, that doesn't mean they cannot use 16:9. Astro should stop using excuse that SD must only be in 4:3, especially when customer service agents in technical department advising the customers.
> It's fine if they want to continue transmit the video in 4:3, but they should not add letterbox or centre cut on a 16:9 content by any means just to make it look nice on 4:3 TV, especially Astro own slot in/in-house ads such as Astro SuperSport ads, Astro First/Best movies ads.
> Remove the letterbox added by themselves on channels like TVB Classic, Asian Action Channel, TVB Classic Movies.
> If that channel provider transmits the SD channel in 4:3 but letterbox is added by channel provider, Astro can remove it themselves before transmitting to viewers.

> SD channels that is supposed to be in 16:9, should seen as 16:9 on viewer's screen, including Astro Go.

Does Astro aware about this? Oh yes, they aware about it. Been months ago, they say they'll do something about it. Until now, same only.
Am I surprised or disappointed? Nope. Why? Because I get used to it already.

Sometimes it's just a matter of changing settings from their side, things that doesn't cost them money, but they got many other bigger things to attend to, so they won't bother this kind of suggestion because for them it's just a minor issue.
*
Thanks for the detailed explanation.

This is exactly the problem i am referring to. It is Super irritating. Now the actual picture shown on the tv is probably just 50% given the extra black boxes.

I think it is an excuse for Astro. I know service provider such as Starhub in lion city they do not broadcast the old content in this manner even now.

The SD content is already Low in resolution and blurry, with the size cut to half now it is even smaller to view. I cannot even see the actor face clearly.

I won’t even keep the basic family pack or other add-on package. I would rather just terminate it and switch to njoi and just watch xinghe alone for rm20.

My current pack is family pack + jade pack + PVR function = RM113++. I can save this money for better good.
joshhd
post Yesterday, 10:30 PM

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QUOTE(westlife @ Dec 14 2019, 09:42 PM)
Thanks for the detailed explanation.

This is exactly the problem i am referring to. It is Super irritating. Now the actual picture shown on the tv is probably just 50% given the extra black boxes.

I think it is an excuse for Astro. I know service provider such as Starhub in lion city they do not broadcast the old content in this manner even now.

The SD content is already Low in resolution and blurry, with the size cut to half now it is even smaller to view. I cannot even see the actor face clearly.

I won’t even keep the basic family pack or other add-on package. I would rather just terminate it and switch to njoi and just watch xinghe alone for rm20.

My current pack is family pack + jade pack + PVR function = RM113++. I can save this money for better good.
*

If you tell them like that, for sure some of the experts over there on Astro will say "Aiya, still can watch mah... No big deal lah."
QUOTE
I cannot even see the actor face clearly.
If you say this, they will recommend you to subscribe to HD service, "to enhance your viewing experience."
You say not sharp mah, not clear mah, subscribe HD lor...

Now their HD quality doesn't look good like back in those days anymore, still dare to charge customers at same price? Oh, don't come and offer Starter Pack or Value Pack to me. shakehead.gif

"Just embrace the bad, be grateful and appreciate for what we as customer get from their service."
They can't make every customers happy.
After all, both legal streaming services like Netflix, and illegal underground IPTV streaming services are available out there.
"Not happy can just terminate Astro." Then you wait till your company shuts down someday lor, if what Astro still continue to behave whatever they're doing now.
OneXX
post Yesterday, 10:52 PM

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QUOTE(westlife @ Dec 14 2019, 08:28 PM)
Astro so good? Auto reduces profit gain?
*
that is why i'm a little bit worry before because ...astro = ⬆️⬆️ not ⬇️⬇️..just enjoy this cheaper price for now...
joshhd
post Yesterday, 11:38 PM

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QUOTE(OneXX @ Dec 14 2019, 10:52 PM)
that is why i'm a little bit worry before because ...astro = ⬆️⬆️ not ⬇️⬇️..just enjoy this cheaper price for now...
*

If you want to clarify anything when it comes to billing, you can contact Astro customer service, or have a live chat with them here:
https://www.astro.com.my/contactus
Look for option to speak with live agent. The chat bot look like pretty cool smart, but eventually you'll realise it doesn't serve much purpose.
westlife
post Today, 06:09 AM

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QUOTE(joshhd @ Dec 14 2019, 10:30 PM)
If you tell them like that, for sure some of the experts over there on Astro will say "Aiya, still can watch mah... No big deal lah."
If you say this, they will recommend you to subscribe to HD service, "to enhance your viewing experience."
You say not sharp mah, not clear mah, subscribe HD lor...

Now their HD quality doesn't look good like back in those days anymore, still dare to charge customers at same price? Oh, don't come and offer Starter Pack or Value Pack to me.  shakehead.gif

"Just embrace the bad, be grateful and appreciate for what we as customer get from their service."
They can't make every customers happy.
After all, both legal streaming services like Netflix, and illegal underground IPTV streaming services are available out there.
"Not happy can just terminate Astro." Then you wait till your company shuts down someday lor, if what Astro still continue to behave whatever they're doing now.
*
Both TVB classic and XingHe do not support HD. So it is not even a solution.
Qash-M
post Today, 11:22 AM

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ch.390 new K-poop rojak channel, too bad it's not K-plus.
zeone
post Today, 12:11 PM

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QUOTE(Qash-M @ Dec 15 2019, 11:22 AM)
ch.390 new K-poop rojak channel, too bad it's not K-plus.
*
So sorry, Bro..
There's no Ch 390...
Or...
Maybe I am not allowed 2see it in the Channel Guide? sad.gif
joshhd
post Today, 01:17 PM

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QUOTE(Qash-M @ Dec 15 2019, 11:22 AM)
ch.390 new K-poop rojak channel, too bad it's not K-plus.
*
QUOTE(zeone @ Dec 15 2019, 12:11 PM)
So sorry, Bro..
There's no Ch 390...
Or...
Maybe I am not allowed 2see it in the Channel Guide? sad.gif
*
It starts on 20 Dec... Only in HD quality.
zeone
post Today, 02:07 PM

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QUOTE(joshhd @ Dec 15 2019, 01:17 PM)
It starts on 20 Dec... Only in HD quality.
*
No wonder... wink.gif
Thks a meg, Bro...
Will chk it out then...
Hv a nice hepi week ahead! 👍😀✌️
CSNG8586 P
post Today, 02:55 PM

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QUOTE(joshhd @ Dec 15 2019, 01:17 PM)
It starts on 20 Dec... Only in HD quality.
*
What is the channel name? Thanks...
TSnexona88
post Today, 04:37 PM

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QUOTE(Qash-M @ Dec 15 2019, 11:22 AM)
ch.390 new K-poop rojak channel, too bad it's not K-plus.
*
damn...
astro really loved with rojak channels...
can't just add K-plus instead...
hazim96 P
post Today, 05:55 PM

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QUOTE(CSNG8586 @ Dec 15 2019, 02:55 PM)
What is the channel name? Thanks...
*
K-Mania is the channel name... I just saw the add just now and I saw running man in it... such a rojak
TSnexona88
post Today, 06:31 PM

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Rojak is cheaper then original content providers channels 😁 also Astro can easily adjust where to put ads slots too..
joshhd
post Today, 07:20 PM

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Ohhhhhhhh... So apparently, the video bitrate on 3 Astro UHD channels now has increased 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣 and I did not expect they take action so fast...
I expect they would take action after.... like several weeks to months, or never. sweat.gif

12316MHz for Astro UHD CH780
user posted image user posted image

Minimum: 21.1Mbps
Average: 21.5Mbps
Maximum: 21.6Mbps

12436MHz for 2 Astro Best UHD channels on CH498 and CH499

user posted image user posted image

Minimum: 16.7Mbps
Average: 17.2Mbps
Maximum: 17.3Mbps

**Only video tracks (VPID) and audio tracks (APID) are shown for easier viewing. Others such as ECM, EIT, DVB subtitle tracks were filtered to look "less cluttering".

The overall average bitrate used on UHD channels appears significantly higher than what I observed few days ago.
From 12.8Mbps to 21.5Mbps, from 13.2Mbps to 17.2Mbps. Nearly half the average bitrate oh... ohmy.gif

And apparently, they've increased the audio bitrate a little bit too... Good job thumbsup.gif thumbsup.gif thumbsup.gif

However, all 3 UHD channels are still in Stereo audio, even there is Dolby AC3 audio track.
Hmm, why they want to stick to Stereo for UHD channels? All HD channels can provide Dolby 5.1, but UHD channels only Dolby "Stereo"?
And tbh, I don't understand why the HE-AAC audio track (Stereo) is still being used, since Ultra Box can downconvert Dolby audio output to PCM uncompressed audio to TV that doesn't support Dolby audio passthrough (I've tried this and it works thumbup.gif unlike the previous HD and PVR boxes that uses previous software), and only Ultra Box can access to UHD channels, so it shouldn't be a compatibility issues, isn't it? They can save some little bitrate bandwidth from there. hmm.gif hmm.gif hmm.gif I dunno, just my opinion...

Hope they'll continue to maintain this bitrate...

---

Aha, by the way, do you guys see any differences in the picture quality on (almost) all HD channels, like from now onwards as you're reading this? 😏
Looks that they've done "something" 😏😏😏... I told you I'll monitor more aggressively from now on.
Hope you guys here, including Ultra Box users here, to observe the picture quality on all HD and UHD channels. And if you suspect the picture quality on any HD or UHD channels becomes bad, do share it to us here first, before contact Astro customer service because they'll likely to suggest that there's something wrong with your satellite dish instead (or maybe they'll start to lecture their customer service agents soon. Kesian... bye.gif ).
Qash-M
post Today, 07:26 PM

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QUOTE(joshhd @ Dec 15 2019, 07:20 PM)
12316MHz for Astro UHD CH780
user posted image    user posted image

Minimum: 21.1Mbps
Average: 21.5Mbps
Maximum: 21.6Mbps

12436MHz for 2 Astro Best UHD channels on CH498 and CH499

user posted image    user posted image

Minimum: 16.7Mbps
Average: 17.2Mbps
Maximum: 17.3Mbps

**Only video tracks (VPID) and audio tracks (APID) are shown for easier viewing. Others such as ECM, EIT, DVB subtitle tracks were filtered to look "less cluttering".

The overall average bitrate used on UHD channels appears significantly higher than what I observed few days ago.
From 12.8Mbps to 21.5Mbps, from 13.2Mbps to 17.2Mbps. Nearly half the average bitrate oh... ohmy.gif

And apparently, they've increased the audio bitrate a little bit too... Good job  thumbsup.gif  thumbsup.gif  thumbsup.gif

However, all 3 UHD channels are still in Stereo audio, even there is Dolby AC3 audio track.
Hmm, why they want to stick to Stereo for UHD channels? All HD channels can provide Dolby 5.1, but UHD channels only Dolby "Stereo"?
And tbh, I don't understand why the HE-AAC audio track (Stereo) is still being used, since Ultra Box can downconvert Dolby audio output to PCM uncompressed audio to TV that doesn't support Dolby audio passthrough (I've tried this and it works  thumbup.gif unlike the previous HD and PVR boxes that uses previous software), and only Ultra Box can access to UHD channels, so it shouldn't be a compatibility issues, isn't it? They can save some little bitrate bandwidth from there.  hmm.gif  hmm.gif  hmm.gif I dunno, just my opinion...

Hope they'll continue to maintain this bitrate...

---

Aha, by the way, do you guys see any differences in the picture quality on (almost) all HD channels, like from now onwards as you're reading this? 😏
Looks that they've done "something" 😏😏😏... I told you I'll monitor more aggressively from now on.
Hope you guys here, including Ultra Box users here, to observe the picture quality on all HD and UHD channels. And if you suspect the picture quality on any HD or UHD channels becomes bad, do share it to us here first, before contact Astro customer service because they'll likely to suggest that there's something wrong with your satellite dish instead (or maybe they'll start to lecture their customer service agents soon. Kesian...  bye.gif ).
*
tfw there's more people here care of the kuality than astro engineer itself. icon_rolleyes.gif

 

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