Streaming Talk The Place to talk about streaming video and audio

AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

Old 05-12-12, 07:40 PM
  #1  
Moderator
Thread Starter
 
TheBigDave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Florida
Posts: 10,690
AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

Is anyone using the new AcornTV channel on the Roku? Streaming commercial-free, classic British TV shows like Upstairs Downstairs, Prime Suspect, Cadfael, Midsomer Murders, etc.

It's an interesting business model. They're rotating shows in and out each week. One season is available for about 5 weeks, then it's removed and the next season takes it's place. Looks like there's about 10-12 shows available at any particular time (each show has a 4-15 episode season). They also have occasional "marathons" where a whole series is available over a week.

So you don't get the entire catalog all at once. There's only about 70 hours of content available at one time. On the positive side, the annual membership is only $25. There's a one month free trial. And non-paying registered members can watch the first episode of each series for free.

Anyways, I tried out a few minutes of some free episodes. Prime Suspect looked really bad (sub-DVD quality). Rosemary & Thyme looked much better, but the audio was off. I'm not too impressed so far. I know these are old shows, and I'm not expecting HD quality. But these are problems due to poor quality streams or bad encoding.

Has anyone else tried AcornTV yet? How's your video quality? I wonder if premium members get a higher quality stream?

http://acornonline.com/acorntv.aspx
TheBigDave is offline  
Old 05-13-12, 10:22 PM
  #2  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Sean O'Hara's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Vichy America
Posts: 13,535
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

Couple interesting shows, but I think I'll hold out for the BBC iPlayer to come out in the US.
Sean O'Hara is offline  
Old 05-14-12, 06:34 PM
  #3  
DVD Talk Hero
 
Numanoid's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Down in 'The Park'
Posts: 27,882
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

A complete absence of comedies, so I'll stick to my usual sources.
Numanoid is offline  
Old 06-03-12, 07:14 AM
  #4  
Moderator
Thread Starter
 
TheBigDave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Florida
Posts: 10,690
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

AcornTV has a deal on a Roku 2HD + 1-Year of Acorn Premium for $59.99.



http://acornonline.com/Product.aspx?p=16402&eid=acorntv
TheBigDave is offline  
Old 06-03-12, 08:20 PM
  #5  
Senior Member
 
brtcmfn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Posts: 419
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

Originally Posted by Numanoid View Post
A complete absence of comedies, so I'll stick to my usual sources.
Couldn't of said it better- I will pass as well
brtcmfn is offline  
Old 06-03-12, 11:40 PM
  #6  
DVD Talk Legend
 
Heat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2000
Location: Central Illinois
Posts: 16,701
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

I'm sure that those shows are good, and that a fan of British dramas or whatever they are would enjoy the channel - but personally I have soooo much stuff on Netflix to watch that I will have to pass on this.

Though I do want to add that I like the idea of paying $25 for a year of access to good TV shows.
Heat is offline  
Old 08-23-12, 07:54 AM
  #7  
Moderator
Thread Starter
 
TheBigDave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Florida
Posts: 10,690
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

Originally Posted by TheBigDave View Post
Anyways, I tried out a few minutes of some free episodes. Prime Suspect looked really bad (sub-DVD quality). Rosemary & Thyme looked much better, but the audio was off. I'm not too impressed so far. I know these are old shows, and I'm not expecting HD quality. But these are problems due to poor quality streams or bad encoding.
I recently tried AcornTV again and wanted to post an update. The video quality seems to have improved. Also, I haven't experienced any further audio problems.

When the channel first came out, the stream was 2 dots. Now everything is streaming at 3 dots.

I would call it DVD quality. And since these are older British dramas, there's not a lot of movement. So although it's not Blu-ray quality, it looks fine, even on my 60-inch HDTV.
TheBigDave is offline  
Old 08-23-12, 07:59 AM
  #8  
Moderator
Thread Starter
 
TheBigDave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Florida
Posts: 10,690
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

AcornTV is offering a Free Trial Premium Membership. You don't need a credit card, just enter your info. Expires on August 31st.

http://acornonline.com/membership.aspx

TheBigDave is offline  
Old 10-02-12, 04:46 AM
  #9  
Moderator
Thread Starter
 
TheBigDave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Florida
Posts: 10,690
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

AcornTV is now offering monthly memberships for $2.99/month. The annual membership has increased to $29.99/year. But they've also increased the number of shows available at a time. It was originally 10-12 shows, and now they have 18 shows.

TheBigDave is offline  
Old 08-10-13, 04:09 AM
  #10  
Moderator
Thread Starter
 
TheBigDave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Florida
Posts: 10,690
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

Acorn TV will be releasing Version 2.0 sometime in the next week or two. They're promising "more content and more time to watch". Here's some more info from posts on their Facebook page.

- The price for Acorn TV will go up to $4.99/month in September. Or you can sign up before it goes up and lock in the $2.99/month price for 12 months.

- Marple will be back at launch. Foyle's War will be back on Sept 2 (along with the 3 all new episodes starting Sept 16). And Prime Suspect will be added in this fall - maybe October.

- Time Team 1 & 2 will both be available at launch.

- Acorn TV will have the exclusive premiere of Doc Martin: Season 6 about a month behind the UK broadcast.

- After the 2.0 update is launched they'll begin working on Acorn TV apps.

- Regarding an AppleTV app: "We wish we could but Apple TV is a closed system and they've declined our interest in building an app for them. Please let them know you want Acorn TV - maybe if enough people tell them then they'll be open to it."
TheBigDave is offline  
Old 08-12-13, 02:02 PM
  #11  
Moderator
Thread Starter
 
TheBigDave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Florida
Posts: 10,690
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

Here's a little more info:

- Once the new model launches, it will have more than triple the current content.

- Once it is live then all of Midsomer Murders plus many, many more programs will be available.

- Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries will be available at launch. Season 2 will premiere in very early 2014.

- Prices will go up to $49.99/year or $4.99/month. Any existing monthly customers will be grandfathered in at the current pricing for a year. And any annual customers or prospective new customers will have a chance to subscribe or renew at the current $29.99/year price.
TheBigDave is offline  
Old 08-13-13, 12:31 PM
  #12  
DVD Talk Legend
 
PhantomStranger's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: The Phantom Zone
Posts: 21,899
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

If they ever include it, I highly recommend everyone watch the original BBC adaptation of Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy. It has a masterful performance by Alec Guinness and one of the most intricate plots in television history. Far superior to the 2011 remake starring Gary Oldman.

http://www.doblu.com/2013/05/27/tink...y-1979-review/
PhantomStranger is offline  
Old 08-14-13, 02:06 PM
  #13  
DVD Talk Hero
 
davidh777's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Home of 2013 NFL champion Seahawks
Posts: 41,682
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

Originally Posted by TheBigDave View Post
Acorn TV will be releasing Version 2.0 sometime in the next week or two. They're promising "more content and more time to watch". Here's some more info from posts on their Facebook page.
What does "more time to watch" mean--do the shows drop off the service after time?

I like Acorn titles, but have so many of them and BBC and others that I can watch on DVD and Prime that I'm unlikely to pay for another service.
davidh777 is online now  
Old 08-14-13, 06:10 PM
  #14  
Moderator
Thread Starter
 
TheBigDave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Florida
Posts: 10,690
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

Originally Posted by davidh777 View Post
What does "more time to watch" mean--do the shows drop off the service after time?
Here's how it currently works:

They list one season from 18 shows. It's available for about 5 weeks. Every week a couple shows/seasons expire and some new shows/seasons get added. So you'll get Agatha Christie's Poirot: Season 9 for a couple weeks, and that'll drop off and you'll get Season 10 for a couple weeks.

They also do 2-3 "marathons" each month. You get the entire series for 30 days. In July they had Foyle's War 1-6, Agatha Christie's Marple 1-4, and Prime Suspect 1-7.

Of course, this will probably all change in a couple days when they launch the new version.
TheBigDave is offline  
Old 08-15-13, 04:54 PM
  #15  
Moderator
Thread Starter
 
TheBigDave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Florida
Posts: 10,690
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

The new version just launched:

Acorn TV has been redesigned to give you more of what you want—more programming, more variety, and more time to watch:
  • Over 60 of the best British TV series—popular mysteries, dramas, and more
  • New and exclusive series added monthly
  • No set end dates, so watch at your own pace
  • Exclusive episodes shown here first
  • No commercials
  • Free shipping on DVDs and gifts from our catalog
If you're on the Roku, you have to go to Settings > System Update > Check Now to force the update. Or you can just wait and it'll automatically update overnight. And you might run into a few glitches. There's still some bugs to be worked out.

They have a 1-Month Free Trial:

https://signup.acorn.tv/index.html

Last edited by TheBigDave; 08-15-13 at 07:44 PM.
TheBigDave is offline  
Old 08-15-13, 05:32 PM
  #16  
Moderator
Thread Starter
 
TheBigDave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Florida
Posts: 10,690
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

It looks like about 60-70 shows. There's 26 Mysteries, 25 Dramas, 12 Comedies and 9 Documentaries (there might be a few that overlap). And there's multiple seasons for each series. Some are complete and others are missing a few seasons. Midsummer Murder has Season 1-22. Agatha Christie's Poirot has Season 1-6, 9 & 11.

It's not their entire catalog. There are a bunch of titles that are missing. I don't see Inspector Lewis, Inspector Morse, Cadfael, Murdock Mysteries, New Tricks, Upstairs Downstairs, Vera and a lot of others. They had previously mentioned that Prime Suspect and Foyle's War would be coming this Fall. So I guess they're holding back some shows to release later.

There's also new Watchlist, Recently Watched, and Search features. I'm glad they added a Watchlist, but it's not great. It only lists individual episodes.

The Search function is kinda useless. It only searches Show Titles (Poirot, Marple, Father Ted, etc). And since there's only 60 shows, you'd be better off just scrolling the catalog. It would be nice if it searched episode titles and descriptions.

Last edited by TheBigDave; 08-15-13 at 07:44 PM.
TheBigDave is offline  
Old 08-15-13, 05:59 PM
  #17  
Moderator
Thread Starter
 
TheBigDave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Florida
Posts: 10,690
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

Originally Posted by TheBigDave View Post
I recently tried AcornTV again and wanted to post an update. The video quality seems to have improved. Also, I haven't experienced any further audio problems.

When the channel first came out, the stream was 2 dots. Now everything is streaming at 3 dots.

I would call it DVD quality. And since these are older British dramas, there's not a lot of movement. So although it's not Blu-ray quality, it looks fine, even on my 60-inch HDTV.
I wanted to update that post from last year. AcornTV keeps improving their video quality. I set the Video Quality to the Very High setting, and I get 4 dots on the Roku.

Newer shows look HD. I'd guess it's probably 720p.

I did a quick test with Agatha Christie's Marple: Season 4, Episode 4. It's available at Netflix, Amazon Prime and AcornTV. I thought Netflix and AcornTV looked the same. Both were HD. Amazon Prime was only SD quality.
TheBigDave is offline  
Old 08-16-13, 01:16 AM
  #18  
Moderator
Thread Starter
 
TheBigDave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Florida
Posts: 10,690
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

Updates from Facebook:

- Thank you for your patience while we work out the problems with the new website and Roku launch. With any major launch, you don't always find the problems until you're live, so we're hearing about them now and our team is working on them. In the meantime, the old Acorn TV is still LIVE on the web and you can still access it at www.acornonline.com/TV - just close the pop-up by clicking on the big "X" in the corner and then watch as you normally would. THANK YOU!

- Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries 1 is available now on the new Acorn TV site, and we'll have the exclusive premiere of season 2 in early 2014.

- All of Foyle's War 1-6 will be added in on Sept 2 AND we'll have the 3 brand new episodes rolling out on Sept 16, 23, and 30.

- On Sept 2 we'll also be adding back in all of Murdoch Mysteries 1-5 plus the brand new and exclusive series 6.

- We're working on a Samsung app now but it will be a while. Then iPad, then Sony, and so on, and so on.
TheBigDave is offline  
Old 08-16-13, 07:22 PM
  #19  
Moderator
Thread Starter
 
TheBigDave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Florida
Posts: 10,690
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

Here's some more Facebook info:

- In terms of programming, our windowing strategy involves offering programs first on Acorn TV, then broadcast, then on DVD, then for digital sell through, then 3rd party streaming, then ad-supported streaming. Since Acorn TV is still fairly new, a lot of our back catalog is already on Netflix and Amazon, but they're not renewing as many older British programs so soon Acorn TV will be the only place you can see them.

- As for NEW programs, in September we'll have the brand new Foyle's War, the new Murdoch Mysteries, and in October we'll have the U.S. exclusive premiere of Doc Martin 6. So, if you like to see the new programs right away and you like older, more niche British TV then Acorn TV is a great add on service.

- With more than triple the content, we'll be raising our prices to $4.99/month or $49.99/year. However, we want to give people time to renew at the old prices. If you're a current annual member, just buy another year on or before Sept 2, 2013 to get the $29.99 price. If you're already a monthly member, then your price will remain at $2.99/year through Aug 31, 2014.

- Vera is available still on the old Acorn TV. Go to http://acornonline.com/acorntv.aspx? and continue watching there. It will return to the new Acorn TV in October along with the all new Series 3.
TheBigDave is offline  
Old 08-17-13, 04:11 PM
  #20  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Albuquerque, NM
Posts: 442
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

I saw the new interface last evening when I went to check out another episode of "Murder in Suburbia" and when scrolling across the shows it bumps be back to the Roku menu. I tried a couple things and can't tell exactly what I'm doing to prompt the kick. Just scrolling past a few shows will do it. I filed a report but thought I'd visit their new site and see if they have forum or something and see if others are having the issue. I'm using a Roku XS (2nd generation model).

Rick
rduncan is offline  
Old 08-17-13, 04:49 PM
  #21  
Moderator
Thread Starter
 
TheBigDave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Florida
Posts: 10,690
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

Originally Posted by rduncan View Post
I saw the new interface last evening when I went to check out another episode of "Murder in Suburbia" and when scrolling across the shows it bumps be back to the Roku menu. I tried a couple things and can't tell exactly what I'm doing to prompt the kick. Just scrolling past a few shows will do it. I filed a report but thought I'd visit their new site and see if they have forum or something and see if others are having the issue. I'm using a Roku XS (2nd generation model).
It crashed on me the other day while scrolling through the menu. Other people have reported the same problem. I think it happens mostly on the "Only On Acorn TV" row.

I don't think they have a Forum. But the best thing to use is their Facebook page. They do a pretty good job of answering questions there.

https://www.facebook.com/AcornOnline
TheBigDave is offline  
Old 09-02-13, 01:23 AM
  #22  
Moderator
Thread Starter
 
TheBigDave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Florida
Posts: 10,690
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

Here's some more random info from Facebook:

- We'll be adding at least 6 new shows on the first Monday of every month - starting Sept 2 with Murdoch Mysteries 1-5 plus all new 6, Foyle's War 1-6 plus new eps on Sept 16, 23, and 30, Poirot 10, Demob, Lorna Doone, and Edwardian Country House. Moving forward we'll have a monthly newsletter, posts on Facebook, and a Coming Soon section on the site itself.

- We are tentatively scheduled to start airing Doc Martin: Season 6 on Oct 7. We don't have any materials in house yet, however, so that's still tentative which is why we've not announced it officially yet.

- We expect to have all new episodes of George Gently in early 2014.

- We're working on the streaming rights for Inspector Lewis for Acorn TV but don't have an ETA on them at this time.

- Available shows remain on indefinitely at this point, but not forever. We'll be adding a "Leaving Soon" category at some point where we'll be putting shows that may have licenses expiring or some other reason why they have to be pulled - but there should be lots of warning.

- We're looking into a significant number of older shows to add, however, our primary focus is on new and exclusive content. Some shows - particularly from the BBC - just aren't available for licensing. And some shows - like Downton Abbey - have already been locked up exclusively by another service.
TheBigDave is offline  
Old 09-02-13, 10:16 AM
  #23  
Moderator
Thread Starter
 
TheBigDave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Florida
Posts: 10,690
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

Originally Posted by TheBigDave View Post
- We'll be adding at least 6 new shows on the first Monday of every month - starting Sept 2 with Murdoch Mysteries 1-5 plus all new 6, Foyle's War 1-6 plus new eps on Sept 16, 23, and 30, Poirot 10, Demob, Lorna Doone, and Edwardian Country House.
This month's new shows are now available on Acorn TV.
TheBigDave is offline  
Old 09-02-13, 01:41 PM
  #24  
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Albuquerque, NM
Posts: 442
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

Thanks...just saw them listed. I even just caught the first episode of the latest season of Murdoch Mysteries. I'd forgotten how much I liked that series (as unbelievable as they are). Edwardian Country House looks to be interesting also. Now if I can wait for the latest Foyle's War I'll be happy.

Rick
rduncan is offline  
Old 09-17-13, 10:22 AM
  #25  
Moderator
Thread Starter
 
TheBigDave's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Florida
Posts: 10,690
Re: AcornTV - Classic British TV Shows

News from Acorn's FB:

Coming in October – Doc Martin 6, Vera 3, Above Suspicion 1-4, Broker’s Man, Joanna Lumley’s Greek Odyssey, and the complete Last Detective.

And in November we have Midsomer 23, Injustice, Crimson Petal & The White, and more.
TheBigDave is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Archive Advertising Cookie Policy Privacy Statement Terms of Service

Copyright 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.