The New PQ Tier thread for Blu-Ray - Discussion - Page 731 - AVS Forum
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post #21901 of 21909 Old 09-22-2014, 04:43 AM
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Captain America: The Winter Soldier

I thoroughly enjoyed this movie on all levels. The picture quality on this bluray is fantastic throughout.
The picture is without major flaw and has zero grain. Clarity and details are some of the best I have seen in recent memory, particularly on midrange and close shots of people and faces. Contrast is very strong and black levels are generally excellent save for a couple indoor shots that had slightly murky blacks. Shadow detail is impressive. The color pallet is slightly subdued but still well balanced with punchy primaries when called upon. Skin tones appear natural.

There are a quite a few images in this movie that are stunning. A couple memorable shots may be some of my new faves.

As a side note the audio is also great.

If not for the black levels slipping on a couple occasions I would rank it even higher but still...

Ranking-TIER 0 (about .40)

Viewed on 60" Panasonic ST60 from a distance of 5.5 feet.
BIB: This is a stunning transfer. Amazing quality. HOWEVER, for some weird reason the office scene with Rogers and Fury had pitiful black levels and the image looked hopelessly flat. I actually stopped it to be sure something hadn't gone wrong with my projector. This definitely puts it out of Tier 0. But other than that incredible detail throughout.
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post #21902 of 21909 Old 09-22-2014, 02:51 PM
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Hi guys

Just moved house, Internet now up and running and will add some reviews soon!

Russ
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post #21903 of 21909 Old 09-22-2014, 03:06 PM
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Hi guys

Just moved house, Internet now up and running and will add some reviews soon!

Russ
We'll need three reviews by Saturday night. Seriously, enjoy your new digs.


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post #21904 of 21909 Old 09-23-2014, 07:33 AM
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Originally Posted by ajvandenb View Post
BIB: This is a stunning transfer. Amazing quality. HOWEVER, for some weird reason the office scene with Rogers and Fury had pitiful black levels and the image looked hopelessly flat. I actually stopped it to be sure something hadn't gone wrong with my projector. This definitely puts it out of Tier 0. But other than that incredible detail throughout.
Well I guess I will just chalk it up to different opinions and priorities. As I stated in my review, there is a scene or two where the black levels slipped but I simply can't downgrade a bluray a whole tier for ONE shot. Not when the rest of the movie looks so good. To me Tier 0 does not necessarily require absolute perfection across the board for 100% of the movie. In my mind, worst case this is a bottom of Tier 0 title.

I have also seen others comment on softness in a couple shots. I can tell you there was none of that while being viewed from a distance of 5.5 ft. on my ST60 plasma with a Darbee processor in the loop (highdef 45%).
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post #21905 of 21909 Old 09-23-2014, 07:41 AM
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Originally Posted by wattheF View Post
Well I guess I will just chalk it up to different opinions and priorities. As I stated in my review, there is a scene or two where the black levels slipped but I simply can't downgrade a bluray a whole tier for ONE shot. Not when the rest of the movie looks so good. To me Tier 0 does not necessarily require absolute perfection across the board for 100% of the movie. In my mind, worst case this is a bottom of Tier 0 title.

I have also seen others comment on softness in a couple shots. I can tell you there was none of that while being viewed from a distance of 5.5 ft. on my ST60 plasma with a Darbee processor in the loop (highdef 45%).
Yeah, I misspoke. I looked at it again. It wasn't the office scene, it was the scene where Rogers and Romanov find the secret S.H.I.E.L.D. bunker in New Jersey. It seems it may have been an intentional look by the directors. The black levels and shadow detail were grey at best but just for that scene. The rest was amazing and I didn't see any of the supposed softness others mentioned.
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post #21906 of 21909 Old 09-23-2014, 01:00 PM
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Originally Posted by wattheF View Post
Well I guess I will just chalk it up to different opinions and priorities. As I stated in my review, there is a scene or two where the black levels slipped but I simply can't downgrade a bluray a whole tier for ONE shot. Not when the rest of the movie looks so good. To me Tier 0 does not necessarily require absolute perfection across the board for 100% of the movie. In my mind, worst case this is a bottom of Tier 0 title.

I have also seen others comment on softness in a couple shots. I can tell you there was none of that while being viewed from a distance of 5.5 ft. on my ST60 plasma with a Darbee processor in the loop (highdef 45%).
Does the Darbee help some visual content better than others? I'm interested in hearing your opinions on the subject.

I usually don't apply a significant penalty in my Tier assessments for brief scenes of lesser quality. That does become a factor the higher up the Tiers you reach. I wouldn't put a disc in the upper half of Tier 0 with questionable moments.


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post #21907 of 21909 Old 09-24-2014, 08:20 AM
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Does the Darbee help some visual content better than others? I'm interested in hearing your opinions on the subject.

I usually don't apply a significant penalty in my Tier assessments for brief scenes of lesser quality. That does become a factor the higher up the Tiers you reach. I wouldn't put a disc in the upper half of Tier 0 with questionable moments.
A moment of sub par black levels does not have much of an impact overall to me, especially when it may have been intended to achieve a certain look by the director/production team.

I personally would be more concerned about even the slightest hint of an anomaly such as color banding, etc.
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post #21908 of 21909 Old 09-24-2014, 06:34 PM
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Does the Darbee help some visual content better than others? I'm interested in hearing your opinions on the subject.

I usually don't apply a significant penalty in my Tier assessments for brief scenes of lesser quality. That does become a factor the higher up the Tiers you reach. I wouldn't put a disc in the upper half of Tier 0 with questionable moments.
I missed the first portion of your comment the first time I read it.

The Darbee is a nice home theater addition for videophiles. When used properly it adds a subtle yet noticeable amount of sharpness to the image. It does not cause any of the negative side effects or artifacts that many other traditional processors may (such as sharpening). It uses some crazy algorithms that seem to alter contrast in a way that makes the image seem a bit more detailed and adds a dimension of "pop" to the screen.

The better the image the better the Darbee works. It will not help a low quality image look any better but with good bluray material it will bring it up another tick. In this way it basically enhances whatever is already there whether good or bad.

It has 3 settings and can be adjusted from 0-110. I find the better the quality of the image, the higher i can turn the Darbee up without the image looking unnatural. Generally I prefer the subtle effect given by setting it at a moderate level.

My initial opinion was that it is just barely worth it's price while in use with my 60" Panasonic ST60, but now that I have it I wouldn't want to give it up. I like that it helps me in squeezing every last bit of PQ out of my already excellent display.

I have also heard from many users that it works wonders while being used with projectors.

Feel free to PM me with any other questions on specifics about the Darbee.
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post #21909 of 21909 Old Yesterday, 12:45 PM
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The Stendhal Syndrome

recommendation: Tier 3.75*

Blue Underground put this Dario Argento movie out in 2008. Despite a fine, appropriate color grading and a relatively new film transfer at the time, The Stendhal Syndrome shows unmistakeable signs of analogue scanner noise common to Blue Underground's Italian-sourced film transfers. Apparently the noise would get introduced by the older telecine machine used to process these Italian films for high-definition masters. The problem is almost solely seen in these Italian-sourced transfers, adding swaths of random noise to the natural grain structure of each film.

I would love to place this BD in Tier Two. If one could somehow ignore the extraneous noise, most evident in the opening act, it's a capable film scan at very good resolution with a pleasing film-like texture. Blue Underground presents the main feature in a 1.66:1 aspect ratio, common to European productions. I don't see any serious indicators that filtering or sharpening have been applied to the transfer, its extra noise is a defect of the older CRT telecine used to master it from the film elements. The film elements are in solid shape, though one scene inexplicably has gate hair.

This is a heavy, dark film as intended by Argento. If one wasn't told it was made in 1995, a person could easily be fooled into thinking The Stendhal Syndrome was filmed in the late 1970s. There is a hint of black crush confined to a couple of scenes.


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