im just about to subscribe to sky but befor i do id thought id ask what the generall quality of the picture is usually like. so is it better that dtt? better than analogue? better than all other tv services?
That's very subjective. I have to disagree with Rolf, because I have a perfect DTT picture, and as far as I am concerned all 3 (analogue, DTT and Dsat) are excellent.
What is certain however, is just about anybody should be able to get a perfect Dsat signal, providing you have the right size dish for your location and it is set up properly. The same cannot be said for DTT or ATT.
Most people will be happy with the picture from Dsat, though on other forums I have heard people criticise certain makes of digibox for having a "soft" picture. If that's really what they found, then it's not the technology at fault, but either a poor digibox, or poor setup.
Agreed that with a still picture there is very little difference ProDave, where of course the analogue picture has advantages is the lack of artifacts in real action shots. I also believe that the DTT data stream has on some occasions been more highly compressed, thus giving a slightly lesser picture quality.
As you say though, any of the three systems when well set up, with good equipment, produce a very watchable picture and most people will not notice any difference between the three.
Compared to Digtal Sat signals I watch from Astra1 on a Force digital receiver I'll have to say that Sky has the clearest and crispest pictures of all (Grundig 310/2). The LNB used on Astra2 are even of a higher quality.
From my experience the '$ky' picture quality varies greatly between stations.
The majors such as BBC, ITV and $ky seem to carry a consitently good quality picture, and the 'orrible little squares only seem to appear when there is a great deal of data due to a raplidly changing picture source - such as rustling leaves or flowing water.
Some of the others have obviously bought a cheaper package, or are trying to push too much through the pipe at the same time, and the quality on some of them in often poor.
I have to say that I prefer to watch a good quality analogue picture, but it is perhaps a subjective matter.