Same experience as me, blocky and pixellated to begin with, but much better quality later. I get about 120-130ms ping to smooth.ch9.ms btw.
But my issues with C9 were rarely with the streaming (and when I did have streaming issues it was because I had a dodgy connection), they were mainly with the player. Speaking of which, are video streams resumable? If I'm watching over wifi and lose my connection,
does the player have to redownload it all when I get reconnected or will it keep its buffer and play what's been downloaded?
With adaptive, it only grabs what it needs. It starts out thinking you're a low bandwidth user then ramps up as needed. If you can't support a stream, it puts you on a lower one. The end goal is instant streaming with zero hiccups.
On network failure, with the player as shown, it doesn't not appear to fail gracefully.
If you refresh and jump to where you left off on both buffered and adaptive, you shouldn't download the area you jumped.