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sluggo
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fixed poor amazon video quality on xfinity

Thu Aug 31, 2017 2:15 am

Recently I've been seeing very poor video quality on my Comcast Xfinity setup through my Samsung plasma. I looked all over the web, with most of the folks who were having the same problem assigning it to a "throttling" process at Comcast. While I had no way to really test this, the symptoms matched up: all of the streamed video on my TV was very sharp, with only Amazon video looking like crap. Most people were seeing this problem on Netflix-sourced content as well, while I actually had good quality video but annoying pauses from time to time (this on a 200Mb/sec connection).

Puzzling, since on my desktop I had no video issues with either service. Then I remembered that my desktop's network connection specified 8.8.8.8 for DNS (Comcast's default DNS is 75.75.75.75). Short story - when I changed the TV's "Smarthub" DNS setting from 75.75.75.75 to 8.8.8.8, all my problems went away. Clear 1080p on Amazon, no pauses on Netflix. Switching back to 75.75.75.75 brought the problems back.

Hope this info helps others.

So I guess my question is, does this indicate some sort of throttling from Comcast (either active or passive)?
This problem was caused by Windows, which was created by Microsoft Corporation.
 
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Re: fixed poor amazon video quality on xfinity

Thu Aug 31, 2017 5:57 am

They must just be spectacularly bad DNS servers. I can't help but feel that if you're implemented throttling through DNS, you're doing it wrong.
 
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Re: fixed poor amazon video quality on xfinity

Thu Aug 31, 2017 7:43 am

they might simply redirect you to a local comcast netflix cache instead, and because its busy AF, you get lower quality?
it would be interesting to compare the stream sources (IP) between using comcast's dns and google's dns.
 
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Re: fixed poor amazon video quality on xfinity

Thu Aug 31, 2017 7:55 am

OpenDNS. Full DNSSEC for free. Now part of Cisco.

208.67.222.222
208.67.220.220
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notfred
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Re: fixed poor amazon video quality on xfinity

Thu Aug 31, 2017 7:56 am

Yup, what wizardz said.

ISPs' DNS servers will point to local cache servers for popular content so they don't have to have it come from the source each time. If the ISP local cache server has a problem then you get poor performance.
 
kvndoom
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Re: fixed poor amazon video quality on xfinity

Thu Aug 31, 2017 8:24 am

Captain Ned wrote:
OpenDNS. Full DNSSEC for free. Now part of Cisco.

208.67.222.222
208.67.220.220

interesting... I'm going to try that on my router when I get home.
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Re: fixed poor amazon video quality on xfinity

Thu Aug 31, 2017 8:39 am

OpenDNS fixed a ton of former issues. I have used it now for 10 years or so. Never failed me, either.
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Re: fixed poor amazon video quality on xfinity

Thu Aug 31, 2017 8:40 am

notfred wrote:
Yup, what wizardz said.

ISPs' DNS servers will point to local cache servers for popular content so they don't have to have it come from the source each time. If the ISP local cache server has a problem then you get poor performance.


I was going to write that it could be the other way around and the connection was being made to Netflix instead of the local cache, but then I reread 75.75.75.75 belonged to Comcast.

So, yeah, probably this.
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Re: fixed poor amazon video quality on xfinity

Thu Aug 31, 2017 9:17 am

Tangential, but this must be how those location-obfuscation services work. I use one to dodge MLB's blackout rules on MLB.tv - even with a $50/year service, it's still cheaper than cable. The only thing I had to change was the DNS server.
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drfish
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Re: fixed poor amazon video quality on xfinity

Thu Aug 31, 2017 9:40 am

My router is configured to use Google DNS as the primary and OpenDNS as the secondary. Anecdotally, do you guys think I should swap those two?
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