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Cable Hitting A Bandwidth Wall? Hardly

by JusitceGustine / August 21, 2007 1:10 PM PDT

This story must have came from sources that never consulted anyone that knows cable TV systems.

No need to buy any Cisco IPTV gear - yet. Just kill off those analog channels that have been taking up space. Let me explain:

If a cable system is last year's state of the art it could have that mentioned bandwidth - 750 MHz.

Same cable system has sayyyyy, 80 basic channels all sent in analog to keep the 1957 era Philco TV usable. At 6 mhz per channel they take up 480 MHz of the available bandwidth, leaving 270 MHz for all those digital channels, premium channels, their own VOIP service, HD channels, internet service, pay per view etc, etc.

Digitizing those 80 channels at 6 to 1 compression would fit them in the space of less than 14 analog channels.

So, we have 84 mhz for the now digitized analogs, 270 for all the rest of the present stuff, thats 354 mhz. Same content using half the capacity.

IPTV? Cable has been doing that for a while - Video On Demand is the same as IPTV, content stored on a server, requested by a customer and streamed in yet more open space.

Coax may not be as sexy as fiber to the curb, but it can do everything fiber can do. Without a big capital cost and without petering out when you live a few feet too far from a Ewe-Verse firebox.

Been listening to the podcast ever since seeing it at CES this year. I stopped for the free seats and kept coming back for the show . .

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Nice plan, but
by Renegade Knight / August 22, 2007 12:24 AM PDT

Since I have that analog cable there is one key feature that I like. It just works. On every TV, every VCR, and my media center computers. Plus it does that in every room.

The moment they go to digital I lose all that convenience because cable companies (and others) insist on mucking up the signal so that I need a set top box. Now I'm tied to the set top box. One room per box, my media center quits working, my VCR can't record the occasional show, and so on.

They could fix that, but based on past experience. They won't.

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A VCR? Late to the upgrade party?
by JusitceGustine / August 22, 2007 2:13 PM PDT
In reply to: Nice plan, but

VCR? You mean you have one of those things my grampa talks about?
No HD?
No premium channels?
No premium channels in HD?

Maximum ?? usage.

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Cassettes Too
by Renegade Knight / August 23, 2007 12:29 AM PDT

But I don't play those on my TV. Just the decks in the cars I can actually afford.

VCRs play VHS, VHS is cheap, viable, and *gasp* still works.

Media companies don't play nice and let you send in your VHS and send you back a DVD for a price making it worth it. So the legacy equipment still works.

Funny thing about that legacy equipment, the fingers you used to type up your comment are legacy equipment.

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B'cast gets to break the model - why not cable?
by punterjoe / August 23, 2007 11:24 PM PDT
In reply to: Nice plan, but

Analog over the air signals are going away in US. Cable can do the same thing, and without the hurdles of broadcast, since it's a closed system. I say, just do it & get it over with. There will be whining either way, so throw a cargoship's worth of QAM boxes to subscribers & kill analog. Then we can quit the handwringing over bandwidth & just start using it.
(Although I do wonder about leakage of these new services into the air & what could happen when they collide with new gear on the auctioned TV spectrum, but that's another topic)

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A new solution works fine.
by Renegade Knight / August 24, 2007 4:34 AM PDT

As long as they let me do what I'm finding I enjoy I'm happy however the problem is solved.

Heck one wireless "set top box" with 4 channels would do the job as long as it was set up right.

KISS applies. Right now Analog works and works simply. IF they can keep it simple...any new system would work.

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Why not just use DSL....
by Nicholas Buenk / August 22, 2007 12:33 AM PDT

What's up with DSL in the USA, in Australia it's faster than cable even. 24mbit.

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DSL - now there's a limited bandwidth service
by JusitceGustine / August 22, 2007 2:15 PM PDT

subject says it all . .

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I don't get you
by Nicholas Buenk / August 22, 2007 2:33 PM PDT

DSL is not like cable you don't share the same wire, each person has an individual copper link to a phone exchange. Meaning it doesn't matter how many people in your area have DSL, provided the exchange has a nice backbone.

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DSL over copper has it limits
by JusitceGustine / August 23, 2007 12:03 AM PDT
In reply to: I don't get you

The telephone company here is offering a phone/tv/internet package here in the US.

Due to the low bandwidth, you cannot stream more than one HD channel at a time (record one and watch another or watch different HD channels in separate rooms) and the internet portion top out at 6m.

Twisted pair is just not ready for the new era.

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New era..
by Nicholas Buenk / August 23, 2007 1:29 AM PDT

We'll go to fibre eventually neither cable or DSL do the job. The thing about DSL is that it's dedicated bandwidth though, you aren't sharing the bandwidth with every other person in your neighbourhood.
But I also question if streaming is the future. On demand of more the internet music model, download and keep, is interesting.

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Guess you might be right about that shared bandwidth thing.
by JusitceGustine / August 23, 2007 12:34 PM PDT
In reply to: New era..

There might be busy times when my cable modem drops to only 5 times the speed of DSL instead of the normal 7 to 8 times speed I get most of the time.

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(NT) What speed in megabit is your DSL?
by Nicholas Buenk / August 23, 2007 2:38 PM PDT
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Currently about 1.1
by JusitceGustine / August 23, 2007 10:50 PM PDT

It was .768 when I switched to cable.

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Mine is 24mbit
by Nicholas Buenk / August 24, 2007 12:16 AM PDT
In reply to: Currently about 1.1

Although because of the line quality is syncs at only 12mbit.. Sad
But I think Australia clearly has faster DSL than the US. Wink

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There's some REALLY old copper in the US
by punterjoe / August 23, 2007 11:31 PM PDT

I was surprised when I went to install some DSL filters, to observe that the telco link into my >100 yr old house was a cloth-wrapped solid copper cable terminating at thumbscrews on a bakelite wallmount. I live in an old milltown that was big from the mid 19th to 20th century & hasn't spend much in infrastrcture since WWII. I'm astounded to get 1.5 Mbps speed from my DSL link. I suspect many in the US are dealing with "vintage" infrastructure.

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