Home News Forum Articles
  Welcome back Join CF
You are here You are here: Home | Forum | High Definition on Virgin Media: FAQ

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest which gives you limited access to view most of the discussions, articles and other free features. By joining our Virgin Media community you will have full access to all discussions, be able to view and post threads, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload your own images/photos, and access many other special features. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free so please join our community today.


Welcome to Cable Forum
Go Back   Cable Forum > Virgin Media Services > Virgin Media TV Service

High Definition on Virgin Media: FAQ
Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 08-06-2007, 15:03   #1
ShadowTD
cf.geek
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Loughborough (Langley)
Services: 100Mb & SH2ac
Posts: 820
ShadowTD has a reputation beyond reputeShadowTD has a reputation beyond reputeShadowTD has a reputation beyond reputeShadowTD has a reputation beyond reputeShadowTD has a reputation beyond reputeShadowTD has a reputation beyond reputeShadowTD has a reputation beyond reputeShadowTD has a reputation beyond reputeShadowTD has a reputation beyond reputeShadowTD has a reputation beyond reputeShadowTD has a reputation beyond reputeShadowTD has a reputation beyond reputeShadowTD has a reputation beyond repute
High Definition on Virgin Media: FAQ

V1.3 of the HD on Virgin Media FAQ

A) Equipment
A.1) What do I need?
A.2) 720? 720 Wide? 1080!! What????
A.3) Connections
A.4) What are all these sockets on the back for?
A.5) The new Samsung V+

B) Content
B.1) Channels
B.2) On Demand
B.3) 5.1 Audio
B.4) Size

C) Costs
C.1) Monthly charges

D) The Future
--

A.1) What do I need to receive High Definition programming with Virgin Media?

You need a V+ box. Like most other broadcasters, VM have decided to include HD with a PVR service. So the only way to receive HD content is with V+, VM's hard drive recorder. This box has both HDMI and component connections. The HDMI can be adapted to DVI with the relevant adaptor although be aware that DVI does not carry audio so seperate audio cables will be required either to your TV, amp or both. Component video has issues with some content (see B.2). There is no non-pvr HD STB nor are we aware of any plans for one.

Obviously you also need a HD television, one with minimum 720 lines of pictures resolution and preferable HDMI, or DVI with HDCP.

A.2) 720? 720 Wide? 1080!! What????

Calm down dear, it's only a FAQ. This tells the box what type of HD signal to output. Try both 720 and 1080 to see which you think gives you a better picture - it's your TV and your eyes. Note that the menus may look fuzzy/rubbish on 1080 - this is an issue (not quite a bug) with V+ as it stands. The 'Wide' options are there due to the way most TV's currently handle HDMI signals - they are unable to apply any of their 'stretch' or 'stretch and crop' modes to the signal, so 4:3 programs will sit in the middle of the screen and you can't do owt about it. The 'Wide' options apply a stretch but then you end up with fat face syndrome. Experiment to find your preferred setting.

A.3) Connections

As a bit of a final 'gotcha', V+'s analogue outputs (SCART & RF) are mostly disabled when you are using HDMI or component. So you can't use a HD TV and a distribution amp to pump the signal round your house. Sorry. The VCR SCART is now active all the time, but is only composite and has no graphics overlay - so no menus.

A.4) What are all these sockets on the back for?

V+ has Ethernet, USB and SATA sockets on the back that DO NOT DO ANYTHING USEFUL. You cannot connect V+ up to a network and access the recordings. You cannnot connect it over USB and access the recordings. You cannot add an external hard drive via SATA. It's all possible, but VM don't want us to do it. However, the USB port does output power - some people use a USB powered laptop cooler to chill the box. Other people have reported success plugging a USB keyboard in to navigate menus, but that's it.

A.5) The new Samsung V+ box.

VM are currently trialling a new V+ box in some areas. This is mostly a cost cutting excercise - the box has fewer connections and is presumably cheaper to produce than the old SA 8300. There's a few gotchas - component video has gone, as have the esata, USB and network ports. Apparently the box doesn't suffer with the blurry menus at 1080i and also lets you record radio stations (although the latter functionality is supposed to be coming to the 8300). The box may also have more versatility to do with outputting HD over HDMI and SD over SCART although there's no concrete reports yet. VM *WILL NOT* swap your 8300 for the Samsung - it's purely for new installs at the moment, so don't waste your breath. Finally, the Samsung apparently also supports MPEG4 but there are 'no plans' to encode any channels in MPEG4 on the network at the moment.

B.1) Channels

VM currently broadcast only one HD channel - BBC HD. Channel 4HD is not currently being broadcast. Supposedly, VM have the 'rights' to do this, but appear unwilling/are unable to do anything about it. We were promised C4HD content on On Demand, but this has not appeared. ITV HD is currently exclusive to Freesat, and not available on V+ (despite the old ITVHD trial being made available on V+). Neil Burkett stated towards the end of 2008 that we would have extra HD channels 'within three months', a date that has since passed. There is strong speculations that ITVHD and C4HD and maybe one more HD channel will be with us at some point in 2009 but yet again it's smoke and mirrors.

B.2) On Demand Content

There is an fluctuating small selection of HD content available On Demand - mostly from the BBC. Some series of 'Lost' and some documentaries have also been randomly available. There were some HD music concerts but they seem to have been MIA for a while now. The quantity of HD movies has improved to three pages now, which might not seem much but is a significant improvement. HD FilmFlex movies are subject to HDMI content protection (HDCP) and cannot be viewed over component. They will work over DVI if your TV supports it. There are occasionally some issues with the classification of HD content - it's sometimes only listed next to the SD version. Apparently, V+ cannot classify an item in more than one category.

B.3) 5.1 Audio

V+ features 5.1 output - both by optical and HDMI. When connected to a compatible amplifier and the HDMI Audio Override option is turned on, the system is 5.1 enabled. Some BBC HD content and all FilmFlex HD movies are in 5.1. A good way to test is the BBC HD 'barker' reel which broadcasts during the day - this is always in 5.1.

B.4) Size

HD recordings take up roughly 4 times the space on the hard drive than SD recordings. The
estimated recording time left bar is for SD content, so be careful when recording HD films from BBC HD.

C.1) Charges

VM do not currently charge a premium for viewing HD channels. HD movies are usually a pound
more expensive than their SD counterpart. The V+ box has its own charges which are not detailed here.

D) The Future

It's been over a year since I first wrote this FAQ, and not a lot has changed. Still only one HD channel. Still empty promises that more HD content is 'coming soon'. VM have stated in investors presentations that after the 2008 'year of broadband' which brought us 50meg, 2009 is the TV platforms turn for some attention.
ShadowTD is offline   Reply With Quote
Advertisement
Old 08-06-2007, 15:25   #2
Nikesh
Inactive
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 2,939
Nikesh has reached the bronze age
Nikesh has reached the bronze ageNikesh has reached the bronze ageNikesh has reached the bronze ageNikesh has reached the bronze ageNikesh has reached the bronze ageNikesh has reached the bronze ageNikesh has reached the bronze ageNikesh has reached the bronze ageNikesh has reached the bronze ageNikesh has reached the bronze ageNikesh has reached the bronze ageNikesh has reached the bronze ageNikesh has reached the bronze age
Re: High Definition on Virgin Media: FAQ

Great post!

I think it should get moved into the Articles section.

Nikesh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-06-2007, 15:27   #3
joglynne
Posting with Cattitude.
 
joglynne's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Manchester. (VM area 20)
Services: Full House (XL), Vivid 200, Phone Talk Weekends
Posts: 11,949
joglynne has a golden aurajoglynne has a golden aura
joglynne has a golden aurajoglynne has a golden aurajoglynne has a golden aurajoglynne has a golden aurajoglynne has a golden aurajoglynne has a golden aurajoglynne has a golden aurajoglynne has a golden aurajoglynne has a golden aurajoglynne has a golden aurajoglynne has a golden aurajoglynne has a golden aurajoglynne has a golden aurajoglynne has a golden aurajoglynne has a golden aurajoglynne has a golden aurajoglynne has a golden aurajoglynne has a golden aura
Re: High Definition on Virgin Media: FAQ



Adding to point A.1 ...as DVI does not carry sound audio cables are required. Obvious when you know but I have had to clarify the need for them on several occasions when I have been helping people set up V+ using HDMI by DVI.
__________________
..."I purr, therefore I am." ~ Anonypuss
joglynne is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-06-2007, 01:05   #4
Tezcatlipoca
Matt
 
Tezcatlipoca's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Cambridge
Posts: 16,850
Tezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny starsTezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny starsTezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny starsTezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny starsTezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny stars
Tezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny starsTezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny starsTezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny starsTezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny starsTezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny starsTezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny stars
Re: High Definition on Virgin Media: FAQ

Stuck.


Also, there's a V+ FAQ here in the Articles section - http://www.cableforum.co.uk/board/10...855-v-faq.html
Tezcatlipoca is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 24-07-2007, 20:23   #5
manjit
Inactive
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 8
manjit is an unknown quantity at this point
Re: High Definition on Virgin Media: FAQ

Quote:
Originally Posted by joglynne View Post


Adding to point A.1 ...as DVI does not carry sound audio cables are required. Obvious when you know but I have had to clarify the need for them on several occasions when I have been helping people set up V+ using HDMI by DVI.
can u guide me to record digital channels via settop box on vcr bcoz i am able to record terestrial but not digital one



manjit
manjit is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 24-07-2007, 20:35   #6
Sirius
#HadEnoughOfWin10
 
Sirius's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 16,240
Sirius has a lot of silver blingSirius has a lot of silver blingSirius has a lot of silver blingSirius has a lot of silver blingSirius has a lot of silver blingSirius has a lot of silver blingSirius has a lot of silver bling
Sirius has a lot of silver blingSirius has a lot of silver blingSirius has a lot of silver blingSirius has a lot of silver blingSirius has a lot of silver blingSirius has a lot of silver blingSirius has a lot of silver blingSirius has a lot of silver blingSirius has a lot of silver bling
Re: High Definition on Virgin Media: FAQ

Very informative
Sirius is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 18-08-2007, 12:33   #7
Prozac
Inactive
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 47
Prozac is an unknown quantity at this point
Re: High Definition on Virgin Media: FAQ

what HD channels are we going to get and when, cos BBC HD is awful, im come on ffs The Last of the Summer Wine in HD? yes it looks lovely when you see Yorkshire in High definition but i want more channels and more content, my mate has Sky HD and he says there is over 15 HD channels.

Pull your finger out Branson and do some deals, sod your aeroplanes mate!
Prozac is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 21-08-2007, 08:12   #8
Tiger33
Inactive
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 72
Tiger33 is an unknown quantity at this point
Re: High Definition on Virgin Media: FAQ

Quote:
Originally Posted by Prozac View Post
what HD channels are we going to get and when, cos BBC HD is awful, im come on ffs The Last of the Summer Wine in HD? yes it looks lovely when you see Yorkshire in High definition but i want more channels and more content, my mate has Sky HD and he says there is over 15 HD channels.

Pull your finger out Branson and do some deals, sod your aeroplanes mate!
my guess is once the on deman system is fixed and fully working correctly (i.e the system can handle it! - bandwidth issues most likely)

then we will start seeing more HD channels - right now i dont think the system can handle it
unless they split the HD and SD broadcasts to separate streams - this is the only way in which they could get a quick working solution
Tiger33 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23-10-2007, 19:42   #9
BBgamer
Inactive
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Services: Virgin Media XL V+ HD Virgin Media Phone Virgin Media Broadband
Posts: 50
BBgamer is an unknown quantity at this point
Re: High Definition on Virgin Media: FAQ

I've got this service.
It's cool, but I wish there was more HD channels.

Might be coming up (As I hear, might be wrong.):
National Geographic HD
Discovery HD
MTV HD
Channel 4 HD
BBgamer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25-10-2007, 21:53   #10
Tezcatlipoca
Matt
 
Tezcatlipoca's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Cambridge
Posts: 16,850
Tezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny starsTezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny starsTezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny starsTezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny starsTezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny stars
Tezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny starsTezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny starsTezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny starsTezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny starsTezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny starsTezcatlipoca has a pair of shiny stars
Re: High Definition on Virgin Media: FAQ

Initial Post updated with ShadowTD's v1.1 FAQ.
Tezcatlipoca is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 24-11-2007, 10:00   #11
nialli
cf.geek
 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Greenwich, SE10
Services: Virgin Media Broadband, TV and Phone; Netflix; NowTV Entertainment; Spotify
Posts: 648
nialli has a brilliant futurenialli has a brilliant futurenialli has a brilliant futurenialli has a brilliant futurenialli has a brilliant futurenialli has a brilliant futurenialli has a brilliant futurenialli has a brilliant futurenialli has a brilliant futurenialli has a brilliant futurenialli has a brilliant futurenialli has a brilliant future
HD on Demand surpasses 100 hours!

At some point in November Virgin Media quietly added more HD content to their On Demand service and tipped over the 100 hours mark. No fanfare, and almost half of it is completely unpromoted, appearing just in the A-Z listing rather than under the 'High Definition' classification. Check here for the latest listing of all the HD content I've been able to find.
__________________
For news and debate on Virgin Media's high definition and TiVo services visit: http://www.vmhd.blogspot.com
nialli is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-12-2007, 12:59   #12
JonathanGcable
Inactive
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 5
JonathanGcable is an unknown quantity at this point
Re: High Definition on Virgin Media: FAQ

Quote:
Originally Posted by ShadowTD View Post
V1.1 of the HD on Virgin Media FAQ
A.4) What are all these sockets on the back for?
V+ has Ethernet, USB and SATA sockets on the back that DO NOT DO ANYTHING. You cannot connect V+ up to a network and access the recordings. You cannnot connect it over USB and access the recordings. You cannot add an external hard drive via SATA. It's all possible, but VM don't want us to do it. However, the USB port does output power - some people use a USB powered laptop cooler to chill the box. Other people have reported success plugging a USB keyboard in to navigate menus, but that's it.


Hi,
I wanted to draw your attention to this important petition that I recently signed:
"Enable eSATA port for the Virgin Media V+ box"
http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/VPlusBox?e
I really think this is an important cause, and I'd like to encourage you to add your signature, too. It's free and takes less than a minute of your time.
Thanks!
JonathanGcable is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-01-2008, 18:55   #13
pclement
Inactive
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 1
pclement is an unknown quantity at this point
Re: High Definition on Virgin Media: FAQ

Can someone please clarify point A3. I currently "pipe" the RF co-ax around my house to every room ( TV ariel to Virgin Box to VCR to Booster in attic then to out all other rooms), giving me the ability to view cable on any TV. I am about to receive a V+ box on 10/01/08 and would be gutted to lose the ability to do this.

Many thanks,

Peter C
pclement is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-01-2008, 21:20   #14
Hom3r
All true..Except the lies
 
Hom3r's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Galactic Sector ZZ9 Plural Z Alpha, www.daves-world.co.uk. A secret Moonbase (shh don't tell anybody)
Age: 48
Services: 1TB Tivo, 1 V+ Box, 1 V Box, SH3. Samsung Galaxy Note 4, 2TB & 3 TB WD NAS, Smart Home stuff, & Cudd
Posts: 14,396
Hom3r has a pair of shiny starsHom3r has a pair of shiny stars
Hom3r has a pair of shiny starsHom3r has a pair of shiny starsHom3r has a pair of shiny stars
Re: High Definition on Virgin Media: FAQ

While you are using the RF/Scart connection you can pipe the tv around the house.

If you use the HDMI cable the RF/Scart connections are disabled and will not work
__________________
Twitter Facebook

My Blog
Hom3r is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 08-01-2008, 14:26   #15
Losttheplot
Guest
 
Location: Wheres my hat?
Posts: n/a
Re: High Definition on Virgin Media: FAQ

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hom3r View Post
While you are using the RF/Scart connection you can pipe the tv around the house.

If you use the HDMI cable the RF/Scart connections are disabled and will not work
Just to further clarify - whilst you are using the Scart or RF connections you aren't getting HD out of the box.
This is often what the likes of Currys and Comet do. They don't have HDMI distribution systems so are feeding all the HD Ready sets with an ASD source. Usually a 'proper' HD source will be limited to supplying pics to a single screen.
  Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT +1. The time now is 17:42.


Server: radium.zmnt.net
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions Inc.