The New PQ Tier thread for Blu-Ray - Discussion - Page 730 - AVS Forum
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post #21871 of 21882 Old 09-05-2014, 09:51 PM
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So what Tier is the Lake in?
With a name like Lake SUPERIOR...and with the color often being BLUE...what Tier should it be in?

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post #21872 of 21882 Old 09-05-2014, 11:37 PM
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Ruby Sparks

recommendation: Tier 2.5*

This BD is a couple of years old by now, released by 20th Century Fox. It is a rather middle-of-the-road looking film with relatively simple cinematography. The AVC encoding is completely transparent to the digital intermediate. I was a little surprised to find it was shot using the Arri Alexa digital camera, I could have sworn it was shot on actual film. Its excellent contrast is never challenged too greatly, though some of the finer detail is limited at times.

Ruby Sparks is not a flashy visual experience but comes delivered in pleasant 1080P resolution lacking the kind of depth and micro-detail necessary for the higher tiers.


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post #21873 of 21882 Old 09-06-2014, 03:10 PM
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Odd Thomas

recommendation: Tier 2.25*

By all rights this superficially impressive picture quality should land in Tier One. Despite some minor banding due to a deficient AVC video encode provided by Image Entertainment on a BD-25, this is a vivid 1080P presentation with excellent clarity and outstanding sharpness. The saturated color palette has lush colors and perfect contrast. Without the following problem, I could have seen ranking this disc near the top of Tier One.

Are you waiting for the punchline on why I assigned Odd Thomas to Tier 2.25? I haven't seen a transfer on BD this completely filtered in several years. The entire movie has been filtered, leaving it devoid of high-frequency content and detail. The waxy skin and plastic faces are the most noticeable results of this filtering. It greatly devalues the inherent detail found in 1080P video.


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post #21874 of 21882 Old 09-06-2014, 09:15 PM
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Man of Tai Chi

recommendation: Tier 0* (bottom 1/3)

A beautiful scope presentation from director Keanu Reeves. I never imagined I would need to write those words. Man of Tai Chi is a visually extravagant martial arts film released last December on Blu-ray, by Starz. The picture is crystal clear, rendering everything as sharply as possible. It has superior detail in every frame and possesses superb depth.

The opening scene is a little rocky with its black levels, crushing the slightest amount of shadow delineation. Starz is distributing this film for the Weinstein Company, throwing it out on a BD-25. That does lead to sightings of macroblocking in two shots. I think another studio with better compression standards might have pushed this movie even higher in Tier 0!

This is definitely must-watch demo material for martial arts enthusiasts.
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post #21875 of 21882 Old 09-12-2014, 05:54 PM
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Having seen a string of recent WB television releases, I'll review them all at once.

Supernatural: Season Nine

recommendation: Tier 2.5*

The Vampire Diaries: Season Five

recommendation: Tier 2.5*

The Originals: Season One

recommendation: Tier 2.25*

Person of Interest: Season Three

recommendation: Tier 3.0*

All these sets share a lot in common, having been distributed by WB in the past two weeks. Three on them air on the CW network. They share very similar technical specifications, as WB has authored them all in AVC at fairly pedestrian bitrates. While four BD-50s sound like a lot, space can quickly get consumed by 22 hour-long episodes. There is too much banding and macroblocking to ignore, especially in the darker scenes. A fifth disc would have made a lot of sense if picture quality was an overriding concern. Television productions often lack the kind of consistency required for higher Tiers, and these programs are no exception.

What stands out most are the black levels in Vampire Diaries and mushy detail in Person of Interest. VD has a muted palette with crushing problems to its black levels, hurting visibility and shadow detail. Person of Interest looks to have been filtered, showing mushy detail and a bit of softness for modern video. It also employs a lot of CGI, more so than even the other shows.

All the programs look rather good in better exterior and daylit scenes, highlighted by vivid definition and a startlingly clean presentation.


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post #21876 of 21882 Old 09-13-2014, 08:00 PM
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Pawn Shop Chronicles

recommendation: Tier 0* (.6)

Pristine picture quality, terrible movie. Incredible definition and texture, highlighted by impressive depth. If I had to cite anything that was less than exemplary, the brightness is oddly flat in a couple of scenes. We are talking artifact-free digital clarity, unheard of just a few years ago.

Starz/Anchor Bay provides a sufficient AVC video encode for the ultra-vivid video. It is simply so clean and immaculately shot that the lower compression parameters never have a chance to introduce problems. I did not expect this type of pure video quality when I popped the disc in, nothing indicated videophile status about it.


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post #21877 of 21882 Old Yesterday, 06:06 AM
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OCULUS

Someone asked about it so here it is...

This was decent horror movie with an interesting concept that could have been done much better IMO.

As far as PQ is concerned, I was rather surprised by how good it looked. For the most part the picture was sharp and clear with very good details. There were a few scenes that came of a bit softer. Contrast was just right and black levels were overall very good although they waivered here and there. Shadow details were just right. The color pallet seemed fairly neutral.

Overall Oculus has very strong PQ with no glaring issues but this movie didn't quite reach reference quality levels.

Ranking- 1.0

Last edited by wattheF; Yesterday at 06:35 AM.
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post #21878 of 21882 Old Yesterday, 06:34 AM
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The Muppets: Most Wanted

Based on the first installment, which my kids own on bluray, I had pretty high expectations for the PQ in this movie. I felt the movie itself fell a bit flat, but as far as PQ goes it definitely lived up to my expectations.

Clarity and detail, although not the best I have seen, are still top notch. I don't recall even one soft shot. Excellent black levels and shadow details combined with perfect contrast lead to great depth. Color is rich with strong primaries. The pallet is neutral with very natural skin tones.

This movie, like the first, has a very pleasant and balanced feel with lifelike realism. It is actually improved in many areas.

Ranking- Tier 0 (somewhere just below the middle)

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post #21879 of 21882 Old Yesterday, 07:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wattheF View Post
OCULUS

Someone asked about it so here it is...

This was decent horror movie with an interesting concept that could have been done much better IMO.

As far as PQ is concerned, I was rather surprised by how good it looked. For the most part the picture was sharp and clear with very good details. There were a few scenes that came of a bit softer. Contrast was just right and black levels were overall very good although they waivered here and there. Shadow details were just right. The color pallet seemed fairly neutral.

Overall Oculus has very strong PQ with no glaring issues but this movie didn't quite reach reference quality levels.

Ranking- 1.0
Thanks for the review!

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post #21880 of 21882 Old Yesterday, 10:12 AM
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The Muppets: Most Wanted


Ranking- Tier 0 (somewhere just below the middle)
Completely agree and good to know I wasn't been too generous, it really is excellent PQ wise.
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post #21881 of 21882 Old Today, 09:20 AM
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Captain America: The Winter Soldier

Tier Recommendation: Tier 0

Well, like the theatrical presentation, The Winter Soldier is presented from its digital source without film grain. Every shot is clear and striking. The only issue that I saw at all was some slight digital noise during a couple of middle-light scenes. It was almost as if they knew how to get the cameras to handle dark scenes and obviously knew how to handle light scenes, but shots that were transitions (like the sunrise early in the film) just exhibited noise that seemed out of place in an otherwise spectacular presentation.

I also rarely listen at reference, but I turned things up for this one and wasn't disappointed at all.

Despite the couple minor instances of noise, the rest of the film is clear and bright and overall excellent, so I would put it in Tier 0.

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post #21882 of 21882 Old Today, 12:41 PM
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The Deadly Duo

recommendation: Tier 2.5*

I had a very long analysis written for this BD that was eaten by the forum, so I will be brief. This is possibly the best vintage film transfer struck for a Shaw Brothers' film. Released in 2009 by Tokyo Shock, it looks beautiful with lovely color saturation and vivid fidelity.

Despite some limited filtering, the result is a new film transfer (well, it was new in 2009) with perfect color timing. It smokes most of the other Shaw Brothers' Blu-rays in terms of innate picture quality and represents a substantial improvement over DVD in all the critical areas.


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