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  1. #1
    Administrator Tracy Rainwater's Avatar
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    Sep 2003
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    HBO Now Looks Surprisingly Good

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    OK, I caved. I was overcome with the NEED to get caught up on the current season of Game of Thrones, so I decided to give HBO Now a shot. There are many different ways to stream the service, like my XBOX 360, but I decided to try it via Chromecast.

    After connecting the Chromecast to the pre/pro in my main theater and downloading the HBO Now app, I was in business. Since I'm using the Chromecast, my phone is the controlling device and the video has to buffer for a few moments, but I was pretty impressed with the AV quality.

    My last real experience with streaming was Amazon Prime, which is decent and early on with Netflix. Prime Video looks pretty good. I would say it's somewhere between DVD and Blu-ray quality, depending on the source material. HBO Now with Game of Thrones looks even better.

    I would put the video quality at about 95% of a good Blu-ray presentation. Yes, it looked that good. As for audio, I was pretty impressed as well. While I wouldn't say that GOT has a reference quality soundtrack, it does make good use of the surrounds for ambiance, decent bass on effects, and the dialog was crystal clear.

    The only downside that I could see is that there is no really good way to fast-forward through the opening sequence and "previously on GOT" part at the beginning. Other than that, I'm happy with what I see and hear.

    I'm up to the fourth episode now and am happy to say that my prediction about Jon Snow has come true. I hope he travels back to Winterfell and kicks that bastard Ramsay Bolton's ass. Needless to say for better or worse, Iwan Rheon will forever be typecast as a psychopath.

    If Ramsey has already gotten what he deserves.........SHHHH !!!

  2. #2
    Administrator Tracy Rainwater's Avatar
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    Sep 2003
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    I finished off the last episodes of GOT last night and checked the audio.

    My pre/pro says it is receiving 2.0 PCM from HBO NOW, via the Chromecast. However, my preamp is doing a fine job of translating that into 5.1. I'm not sure if HBO NOW is delivered as 5.1 from other devices or not.

    As for the last episodes, I am both pleased with a few things that happened and saddened by one phrase that keeps running through my head. "Hold the door !!! Hold the door !!!"

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