The New PQ Tier thread for Blu-Ray - Discussion - Page 645 - AVS Forum
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post #19321 of 21648 Old 04-16-2012, 11:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djoberg View Post

If any of you believe in prayer (as we do) I would appreciate them.

Denny

Best wishes to you and your wife. Here's hoping for a good recovery

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post #19322 of 21648 Old 04-17-2012, 06:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djoberg View Post

I'm just chiming in to say I haven't been on the Forum lately because my wife (Jenny) was in a serious car accident last Thursday and had to be life-flighted to Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis. She is in stable condition with broken bones in her neck and two broken ribs which caused a blockage in her right lung. If any of you believe in prayer (as we do) I would appreciate them.

I would not normally think of posting this on the Forum, but I know I've often been curious when a regular participant isn't heard from in awhile and I didn't want to get to that point to cause some on here to wonder. I will probably be here, by Jenny's side, for close to another week (we hope she's released by then). I look forward to her recovering, and then to my return to Blu-ray viewing and giving reviews.

Denny

Prayers sent for a quick recovery. Get well soon Jenny.

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post #19323 of 21648 Old 04-17-2012, 06:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djoberg View Post

I'm just chiming in to say I haven't been on the Forum lately because my wife (Jenny) was in a serious car accident last Thursday and had to be life-flighted to Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis. She is in stable condition with broken bones in her neck and two broken ribs which caused a blockage in her right lung. If any of you believe in prayer (as we do) I would appreciate them.


Denny

we'll pray for your wife and her good recovery.
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post #19324 of 21648 Old 04-17-2012, 11:44 AM
 
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I'll echo all previous sentiments for DJ's wife. Hope it turns out okay!

The Divide

Noisy and dim, the detail will be the saving grace for most. Close-ups are outstanding in their definition, even if backed by drab black levels. Colors are flattened oranges and a bit of red for blood, not much else.

Tier 3.0*
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post #19325 of 21648 Old 04-17-2012, 04:00 PM
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Battle Royale: The Complete Collection (Theatrical Cut)

recommendation: Tier 3.75*


I'm unsure whether there is a problem with the source material or original film elements, but this disc from Starz/Anchor Bay looks heavily filtered. There is little high-frequency content to a film that was first released in 2000. Other than that serious problem, the presentation is satisfactory and inoffensive. The AVC video encode is a high-bitrate affair that rarely dips below 30 Mbps. I could see an argument being made that this release deserved Tier 4 due to the lack of detail.

I did not sit through the whole director's cut provided on a separate BD-50, but it looked substantially identical to the theatrical version in picture quality.
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post #19326 of 21648 Old 04-18-2012, 07:42 AM
 
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Seven Below

Dull black levels hinder most of the film, while fleeting issues with aliasing and noise are less common. Facial detail is superb and consistent. Dull color platte doesn't lead to many striking images, if any.

Tier 3.0*
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post #19327 of 21648 Old 04-18-2012, 02:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djoberg View Post

I'm just chiming in to say I haven't been on the Forum lately because my wife (Jenny) was in a serious car accident last Thursday and had to be life-flighted to Hennepin County Medical Center in Minneapolis. She is in stable condition with broken bones in her neck and two broken ribs which caused a blockage in her right lung. If any of you believe in prayer (as we do) I would appreciate them.

I would not normally think of posting this on the Forum, but I know I've often been curious when a regular participant isn't heard from in awhile and I didn't want to get to that point to cause some on here to wonder. I will probably be here, by Jenny's side, for close to another week (we hope she's released by then). I look forward to her recovering, and then to my return to Blu-ray viewing and giving reviews.

Denny

Hi Denny. I wish her well and a fast recovery. I can only imagine how difficult this is for her and more so for you and your daughters.
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post #19328 of 21648 Old 04-19-2012, 07:13 AM
 
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Born to Be Wild

Stunning showcase for IMAX 4K digital cams. With the exception of flicker on especially busy jungle shots, the visuals are flawless. The level of information is striking, intense, and loaded with depth. Black levels are outstanding and rich, while colors aid the feeling of dimensionality.

Tier 0.5*
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post #19329 of 21648 Old 04-19-2012, 10:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gamereviewgod View Post

Born to Be Wild

Stunning showcase for IMAX 4K digital cams. With the exception of flicker on especially busy jungle shots, the visuals are flawless. The level of information is striking, intense, and loaded with depth. Black levels are outstanding and rich, while colors aid the feeling of dimensionality.

Tier 0.5*

I did a blind buy of this mostly to see the array of wildlife. I have only viewed the regular d version, however I agree with your comments. Is there a separate 3d weighting that would affect ranking?
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post #19330 of 21648 Old 04-20-2012, 07:40 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trinifox View Post

I did a blind buy of this mostly to see the array of wildlife. I have only viewed the regular d version, however I agree with your comments. Is there a separate 3d weighting that would affect ranking?

Yes, there's a 3D release, but I don't have the equipment.

Clueless

Sharpened enough to produce some notable edge enhancement and elevated grain structure, this one loses some of its zest but is pleasing otherwise. Colors are impressive and facial detail is excellent. Black levels have depth.

Tier 2.75*
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post #19331 of 21648 Old 04-20-2012, 02:14 PM
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Has anybody seen the new 8K version of Baraka? Saw it today at Barnes & Noble.

You see me reaching for my f****** wallet?!?
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post #19332 of 21648 Old 04-20-2012, 10:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deltasun View Post

Has anybody seen the new 8K version of Baraka? Saw it today at Barnes & Noble.

There is a new version? I thought the original BD was scanned at 8K.
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post #19333 of 21648 Old 04-21-2012, 06:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deltasun View Post

Has anybody seen the new 8K version of Baraka? Saw it today at Barnes & Noble.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Phantom Stranger View Post

There is a new version? I thought the original BD was scanned at 8K.

Phantom is right; the initial version was scanned at 8K.

Jenny and I returned home from Minneapolis yesterday. She is still hurting from her fractured bones in her neck and her broken ribs. She also has a heart condition (Atrial Fibrillation) and a thyroid problem (hyperthyroidism) that will be addressed. We will be seeing 5 specialists in all over the next 3 months.

We stopped at the accident site on the way home. She had fainted while driving on Interstate 94 and drove into a somewhat gentle sloping ditch (thankfully!) and continued through a grassy field until she crashed into two trees. Our Toyota Highlander was totaled and if you were to see it you'd be amazed that she survived the crash. Continued prayers are deeply appreciated.

Denny

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post #19334 of 21648 Old 04-21-2012, 07:19 AM
 
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The Red House

Mimicking previous Film Chest releases, this one is scrubbed of all grain, leaving the image smooth and lacking any real definition. Brightness is cranked far too high, and blacks crush whatever they can. Some banding adds to the problems.

Tier 4.25*
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post #19335 of 21648 Old 04-21-2012, 12:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djoberg View Post

We stopped at the accident site on the way home. She had fainted while driving on Interstate 94 and drove into a somewhat gentle sloping ditch (thankfully!) and continued through a grassy field until she crashed into two trees. Our Toyota Highlander was totaled and if you were to see it you'd be amazed that she survived the crash. Continued prayers are deeply appreciated.

Denny

It does sound amazing she survived the accident at all. Run a car into a tree at a certain angle and often no one will survive. Hopefully her recovery will be speedy and there are no further complications.
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post #19336 of 21648 Old 04-21-2012, 01:04 PM
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Immortals (Netherlands)

Although there are a number of bright scenes which looks pristine, the PQ is an disaster due to severe banding and crushed blacks resulting.

Audio was an epic fail in every level due to poor mixing.

Recommendation: Tier 2.75

Blu-ray : 340
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post #19337 of 21648 Old 04-21-2012, 10:26 PM
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The Help

Wow, I was bowled over by this transfer. The foliage is the most obvious thing that impresses detail-wise, but clothing, surface textures, and facial detail are all really striking. Better still are the rich, saturated colors and blacks. The numerous sweet 50s cars in this movie absolutely leap off the screen, but not in a cartoonish way. The shadow detail on this is truly exceptional as well, which is a good thing, as there are many "naturally lit" scenes.

In looking at Gamereviewgod's and Djoberg's reviews, I think both are fair. But I'm going to side with Djoberg on this one. I think it is tier 0, because of the ultra fine detail combined with the completely absorbing color presentation. If there is a soft face now and again (and this could be true for no more than 2 or 3 minutes of screen time over a 2 plus hour movie), the rest of the detail is so strong that it overrides it in my book. Scanning my shelf, the movie this reminds me of most quality wise is "A Serious Man." So that's where I'd put it.

Tier Recommendation: 0 (below A Serious Man)

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post #19338 of 21648 Old 04-22-2012, 05:37 AM
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It has Been Some time since I have posted...my ln52b750 had an unexpected attack from one of my kid's play balls with a marble inside...it was not pretty. As my other LCD was not big enough to do reviews I have waited till I was able to get a new TV...being a Samsung Fan I Went with the UN55D7000...

Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol
I had high hopes for this title because of what I had heard...the 1st 35 minutes or so were very good. I would say tier 0 to my eyes but I am a little rusty Great Sharpness great clarity...great closeups and long cityscape shots... However after the car crash scene...the blacks fell apart the skin tones went amber...the level of sharpness was not as consistent...it still looked good but certainly not as good as before. I would say somewhere in tier 2 for the rest. It is a little disappointing when movies are not consistent as they should be...also great movie...and the audio rivals all demo audio tracks I have heard...coolest part of the movie hands down...

All in all I would go with...
Tier 1.75
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post #19339 of 21648 Old 04-22-2012, 09:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cjmx2 View Post

It has Been Some time since I have posted...my ln52b750 had an unexpected attack from one of my kid's play balls with a marble inside...it was not pretty. As my other LCD was not big enough to do reviews I have waited till I was able to get a new TV...being a Samsung Fan I Went with the UN55D7000...

You're not alone on that score, I know someone whose child decided throwing a football straight at the plasma was a good idea. The good news was the child knew how to throw a nearly perfect spiral, the bad news was that plasmas are not football-resistant.
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post #19340 of 21648 Old 04-22-2012, 10:09 PM
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The Graduate (regions A&B UK import)

recommendation: Tier 2.75*

MGM in 2009 released an American BD of 1967's The Graduate, that was a holdover originally made in the very early days of the format. It contained an outdated transfer and MPEG-2 video encode. Its current ranking in the Tiers is 3.25, which by the way was not evaluated by me. Under review here is the widely-regarded superior edition, the UK Studiocanal collection disc that is sourced from a completely different source.

The 105-minute film is encoded in AVC at solid video bitrates around 23 Mbps on a BD-50. There are slight differences to the color timing and the gamma is higher than on the MGM BD. The film elements are in great condition and show little to no signs of aging or wear in the print. Fine object detail is very good in most shots, though flesh-tones waver in certain scenes. A small amount of edge enhancement has been added that does produce thin halos. The halos are unobjectionable in magnitude and viewers will have to be looking for them to see the sharpening.

This BD for the most part faithfully reproduces the light grain structure of The Graduate. It's largely film-like and there are no obvious shots that look strange. If I had to guess there has been a slight filtering pass to the transfer, as some shots are missing that little extra bit of noise and fine detail that should be there. But that is really something that will be all but unnoticeable. The digital noise reduction was handled with a deft touch, if in fact it was used on the transfer. The average viewer will find it a pleasing transfer that contains a high degree of clarity.

My only real complaint, though minor, is the movie looks too bright. It helps the colors to pop more but looks off in some scenes. The black levels never clip but the brightness prevents blacks from being deep and inky.

Based on available information, the Studiocanal version appears to be the best transfer and Blu-ray for The Graduate at the moment. This is a solid disc with excellent picture quality.
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post #19341 of 21648 Old 04-23-2012, 07:27 PM
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Night of the Demons (2010)

recommendation: Tier 4.5*

One of the worst-looking Blu-rays I've seen created from a movie made during the Blu-ray era. It is shot and lit so poorly on 16mm film that the budget must have all gone to pay for Shannon Elizabeth's role. There are modern amateur films being produced with better picture quality. Little discernible detail beyond the resolution of 720p and a grotesque amount of noise mixed with the copious grain. There was a strong impulse to place it in Tier 5 but its recent vintage does confer a few small benefits to the image.

This modern update on Night of the Demons is a poor effort by E1 and one wonders why it saw a release on the Blu-ray format at all.

BDinfo scan (courtesy of Cinema Squid):
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...9#post19367219
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post #19342 of 21648 Old 04-24-2012, 11:17 AM
 
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Contraband

Don't be easily fooled by the facial detail. That looks great, but the black crush is abhorrent. It makes scenes difficult to make out:

Attachment 244464

Colors have intensity but are limited in scope. Grain veers towards noise far too often to be excused as a fluke.

Tier 3.0*
LL
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post #19343 of 21648 Old 04-24-2012, 08:50 PM
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Stone

recommendation: 1.25


Stone has outstanding picture quality and only the lack of flashy cinematography prevents a higher placement. Most noticeable is the distinct lack of teal-and-orange color timing that has become so prevalent in Hollywood movies of late. Flesh-tones are perfectly natural in a color palette that is neutral and does not call attention to itself.

The only real flaw is the appearance of aliasing, particularly early in the film during interior scenes in the prison. Created from a Digital Intermediate, fine micro-detail is superb as the transfer has not been filtered. There is an immediate clarity to the film that remains strong throughout the length of its running time. For a drama, depth and dimension are very good and comfortably qualifies the BD for Tier One.

BDInfo scan (courtesy of Cinema Squid):
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...2#post19854992
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post #19344 of 21648 Old 04-25-2012, 07:53 AM
 
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Dark Tide

Full of underwater banding and lackluster detail. Colors are nice, but not enough to save it. Black levels lose their kick a few times, and the best stuff are the shots of South Africa's coast. Only a handful of close-ups are worth the effort.

Tier 3.25*
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post #19345 of 21648 Old 04-26-2012, 08:29 AM
 
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The Innkeepers

A low budget flick that actually uses a film stock, this one resolves the grain structure beautifully. Facial detail perks up, although black levels will soak up some shadow detail. Contrast is bland and colors are desaturated, so it's not a showcase, but still a surprise.

Tier 2.75*
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post #19346 of 21648 Old 04-26-2012, 04:49 PM
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Heaven's Lost Property: Season One

recommendation: Tier 3.5*


Heaven's Lost Property is an anime series released by Funimation. While upscaled from an original source animated at lower than true high-definition resolution, the traditional animation still translates nicely on BD. It shows few of the problems normally associated with the process and will fool a majority of viewers into believing they are watching a true high-definition production.

The video encode in AVC handles the picture with a minimal amount of banding. The stylish animation alternates between cartoonish characters and more realistic line art, though both styles are softer and hazier than normal. The color palette favors pastels over brighter primary colors.
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post #19347 of 21648 Old 04-26-2012, 05:11 PM
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Boardwalk Empire: The Complete First Season

recommendation: Tier 1.5*


HBO's lavish production values shine quite nicely on Blu-ray, in this 2012 release of the first season for Boardwalk Empire. Its placement should really be higher than the Tier 1.5 I've assigned it, but a couple of problems drag the assessment down. A razor-sharp image with deep contrast and impeccable clarity are marred by spotty black levels and a lack of top-notch high-frequency content. It's still a very pleasing look that most will be quite satisfied to watch on a large display.

The black levels do vary in quality for some reason, particularly in the darker exterior locations. From one minute to another, inky black levels will revert to a washed-out, dull appearance during night shots. Its especially noticeable because the rest of the picture quality is so exemplary in all phases.

A smaller matter is the lack of visible detail down to the pores. The show has many close-ups, but high-frequency information still lacks much of the time. By some unknown magnitude the entire transfer has been filtered. No other remnants of this manipulation are evident except the slight loss in fine detail. In fact, there are no halos to the picture or weird noise artifacts. As usual, the video encode for one of HBO's releases is very good as the series is spread out over 5 BDs.

BDInfo scan (courtesy of Cinema Squid's website):
http://www.cinemasquid.com/blu-ray/m...9da33049#specs
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post #19348 of 21648 Old 04-26-2012, 11:17 PM
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Take Shelter

A typically strong Sony encode. Overall quite sharp, but perhaps a bit too "digital" looking in spots, especially the film grain in some lower light scenes. At times, the Ohio foliage is very detailed. Faces are very good but not best of format. Black levels are solid. High contrast scenes look great. Colors are very accurate looking and stable.

There are a few scenes featuring optical effects that show some sort of manipulation, jaggies, and blown out contrast values. It's only perhaps 2 or 3 minutes total, but it is noticeable and it takes things down a few ticks.


Tier Recommendation: 1.5


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post #19349 of 21648 Old 04-27-2012, 08:16 AM
 
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W.E.

Hideously ugly film that swaps film stocks with regularity and the encode can't keep up. Black levels are awful, some of the worst I've come across for sure. It's meant to pale the piece, with takes colors with it as well. That makes sense for the vintage footage, not so much for the modern stuff (the film has two timelines). Detail is shockingly low, confined to a handful of shots, and it's all so soft, nothing has much punch.

Tier 4.0*
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post #19350 of 21648 Old 04-27-2012, 06:23 PM
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Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gamereviewgod View Post

Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol

Obsessed with teal and occasionally burnt flesh tones, the disc is still (mostly) a dazzler. Extensive fine detail is appreciated in close-ups and it's consistent. Black levels are pure with a few exceptions. One in-car car chat is especially murky. The 35mm footage blends with the IMAX stuff perfectly.

Tier 1.5*

Quote:
Originally Posted by cjmx2 View Post

Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol
I had high hopes for this title because of what I had heard...the 1st 35 minutes or so were very good. I would say tier 0 to my eyes but I am a little rusty Great Sharpness great clarity...great closeups and long cityscape shots... However after the car crash scene...the blacks fell apart the skin tones went amber...the level of sharpness was not as consistent...it still looked good but certainly not as good as before. I would say somewhere in tier 2 for the rest. It is a little disappointing when movies are not consistent as they should be...also great movie...and the audio rivals all demo audio tracks I have heard...coolest part of the movie hands down...

All in all I would go with...
Tier 1.75

Well, my first Blu-ray and review since returning home with my recovering wife (Jenny)....she even joined me for this viewing, a rare exception...and a welcome one!

I agree with many of the points noted above by GRG and cjmx2. I truly believe this would have easily been a Tier 0 placement had it not been for a few isolated cases where black levels faltered (in most scenes they were magnificent!) and then those pesky teal/gold hues that hindered flesh tones.

Facial details were Tier Blu all the way!! You gotta love it when every pore, bead of sweat, scar, etc. are seen in all their glory...amazing texture on just about every actor's face!

Colors too were EYE CANDY, especially the last shooting in Mumbai, India. They were a bit on the over-saturated side, but dazzling none-the-less.

Aerial views of the various locations were a sight to behold. Even my wife, who doesn't usually appreciate fine detail, commented on the definition of buildings and city streets. I just knew I had to mention this highlight as soon as she chimed in with her ever-so-rare praise.

Maybe it's due to seeing my first Blu in nearly three weeks, but I feel inclined to go a notch or two higher than my colleagues, so here's where it goes....

Tier Recommendation: 1.25*

Pioneer 60" KURO Elite (1080p/24)....Pioneer Elite 05....Viewed from 7.5'

PS The audio was rock-solid. Lots of LFE for us bass heads...and stellar material in the surrounds too.

Pioneer Kuro Elite PRO-151FD....Pioneer Elite BDP-05....Onkyo TX-NR717

Cambridge Soundworks MC305 Fronts & Center...Cambridge Soundworks Ambiance Surrounds....SVS PC12-NSD
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