Hi everyone. I finally migrated to an Ignite TV + Internet + Home phone bundle on Saturday morning. While I had already seen Ignite TV in action at friends’ and family members’ homes, it was a limited experience and I haven’t had a chance to really use it in depth until now.
Overall, I love it! Great interface, cool features, and excellent picture quality. I loved the picture quality of my old NB3 PVR but I can honestly say that Ignite TV pic quality is noticeably better. In fact, when we were watching TV last night, my wife even said "wow, the picture is so clear!" and she NEVER notices stuff like that...so the fact that she noticed it says a lot.
I have the Technicolor XB6 running in bridge mode with my own Asus RT-AC68U router and everything (well almost everything) works great. My internet plan is 150/15.
A few observations:
1. Pings and jitter are ever so slightly higher than they were with my CODA-4582 modem. We’re talking 2-3ms higher so nothing significant.
2. When running speed tests on Ookla, download speeds are fine but the upload speed tests are interesting. They always start at 16Mbps right away but then quickly drop to 3 or 4 Mbps, and then very slowly climb back up to the max for my plan. They eventually reach 15 or 16 Mbps by the end of the speed test. I tested this with the XB6 in gateway mode as well and it’s exactly the same result. And it’s the same result regardless of being connected directly via Ethernet or over WiFi. It’s also the same result when testing on fast.com. With the CODA modem, it was a solid 16Mbps from the beginning and throughout each and every test…there were never any dips.
3. Regardless if I’m in bridge mode or gateway mode, the Ping Plotter app refuses to work 50% of the time. Sometimes traces via the Ping Plotter app will start and run perfectly fine but sometimes they won’t run at all and will show a solid red bar across the board with no IPs listed, as if I have 100% packet loss, which is obviously not the case. With the CODA modem, Ping Plotter traces worked every time.
4. Rewinding and fast forwarding anything (live tv, on demand, etc) is very frustrating. I already knew about this after hearing of the experience from other Ignite TV users but I didn’t know how annoying it was until I started using it myself. The timing is very off (more than just a few seconds). It’s probably the one thing I miss most about the NB3 box and having a local PVR where rewinding was 100% accurate. I hope Rogers (errrrr Comcast 🙂) fixes this soon.
5. If I connect my Xi6 TV box to my network using an ethernet cable, channel changing is surprisingly slow. If I disconnect ethernet and use WiFi alone, channel changing is fast (around 1 second or less). Strange that being directly connected with ethernet would be slower.
6. The XB6 is capable of a backup battery for home phone but there isn’t one installed by default. In the US, Comcast offers free batteries to any of their Xfinity customers that request one. Does anyone know if Rogers will do the same?
That’s it for now! Overall, as I said, the experience has been mostly positive but it’s only been two days 🙂
*** Edited Labels ***
Does anyone know what the “Zoom” option does under “Video Display” settings in the Xi6 menu? Seems like toggling it between “Full” and “None” doesn’t do anything at all…
This setting only affects SD channels with a 4:3 aspect radio. When set to "None", you will see a square picture with sidebars on a widescreen TV. When set to "Zoom", the picture will get stretched horizontally to fill the screen.
Ahhh ok. So only SD channels and not SD content on HD channels, correct?
Yes, that's correct. The Ignite set-top box can only Zoom (stretch) a channel that broadcasts with a 4:3 aspect ratio.... and the channel needs to be encoded in a very specific way to allow that to happen.
Because all SD content on HD channels (e.g. Star Trek Voyager on CTV Sci-if) show the black bars on the sides regardless if Zoom is set to Full or None.
Yes, because while source content may be 4:3, the channel itself is widescreen HD.