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Bandwidth Required to stream HDTV

Last response: in Home Theatre
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May 6, 2012 1:11:13 AM

I need some advise from users.

I got sick of Comcast extracting their monthly pound of flesh and cut the cord. Now, Netflix gets $7.99 for all the shows we can stand...almost.

We need to watch our favorites on ABC, etc. Problem is, we can't get them to stream properly (if at all) without long periods of buffering or, worse yet, constant starting and stopping.

Obviously, we need more bandwidth, but how much? The Sony Blueray player I bought says I need 25 megs. The guy at Best Buy who sold it to me says 15 megs is enough. The people at AT&T claim I can stream Hi Def with 6 megs, which is as fast as they can provide via DSL to my location.

I like the price of DSL, and know it won't slow down like Comcast cable did, but is 6 megs enough, really? Also, I'm limited in how much I can use each month. I have no idea how much I need because Netflix does such a great job at 3 megs due to the system they use.

We watch several hours via Netflix every day, and about 2 hours of network.

Any advise would be a big help...
May 6, 2012 6:19:01 PM

What kind or access do you have to the Internet? I am using DSL, but it is a speed 2 levels up from the lowest speed. Of course I am not using netflix. I am only getting from 6 - 12 megs. Sometimes you might be getting some sort of throttling based on your location. I watch a lot of Korean TV episodes with subtitles because I just cant stand most network or cable TV programs.

It could be throttling and it could be Netflix. I have also seen this happen because of a bad router or modem at my house due to cheap and faulty wireless routers. This could be a sign of equipment failure.
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May 18, 2012 12:13:54 AM

Still only one reply. I still need help, please!
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May 18, 2012 2:38:06 AM

How are you getting Netflix to your TV?

If you're using a computer (aka HTPC) to stream Netflix to your HDTV, and are still wanting the local channels (ABC, NBC, CBS, PBS), then I'd recommend getting an ATSC TV Tuner card for your PC.

No need to worry about bandwidth at that point.

-Wolf sends
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May 18, 2012 4:12:05 PM

Good information. Actually, I have an antenna on my HDTV. Far, far better picture than any cable or satellite can deliver.

Actually, we watch network shows on the Internet show sites. That way we can watch when we want and there are few, if any, commercials.
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May 27, 2012 10:40:46 PM

STILL LOOKING FOR ADVICE. How much bandwidth and/or connection speed is required to stream HDTV?
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May 29, 2012 5:07:25 AM

I use Verizon FIOS and I generally get between 12-15Mbps, with two PCs connected. Depending on throttling and high volume in my area, It's hit or miss with streaming for me, too. Generally, 95% of the time I can stream with limited buffering ( if any) but that 5% is annoying. I'm not an expert by any means, but with my experience anywhere in the teens should be fine. If you clear your cache and all those little tech tricks, the 5% isn't as frequent.

Probably doesn't answer your question, but know you're not the only one with this issue.
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May 29, 2012 6:07:06 AM

Thanks. I hope to hear from someone with DSL. That is my best choice in my area. The fastest I can get is 6Mbps. I don't want to sign up and run all the wiring just to find out it won't work.
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