The New PQ Tier thread for Blu-Ray - Discussion - Page 736 - AVS Forum
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post #22051 of 22061 Old 11-17-2014, 06:22 PM
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^^^^^

Short Peace sounds interesting Phantom. The trouble is I highly doubt that our local video store will have a Blu-ray copy to rent and I'm not sure I would want to buy it. But I am close to larger cities so I may check out their video stores.

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post #22052 of 22061 Old 11-17-2014, 07:39 PM
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I doubt it would be available for rental outside of New York or L.A. Each short feature has a different Japanese director. The pristine animation is certainly its most striking feature. Its stories are entertaining in their brevity but a passing knowledge of Japanese culture helps a great deal.

Old chum, keep your eyes on this Bat-channel for my next intended placement coming soon. Holy Tier One, Batman!
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post #22053 of 22061 Old 11-18-2014, 07:14 AM
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You've got me interested in Short Peace as well Phantom. I've gotten interested in Japanese cinema lately and will be expanding my collection in that direction with The Hidden Fortress, Throne of Blood, Rashomon, et al. in the near future.

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post #22054 of 22061 Old 11-19-2014, 07:55 PM
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Batman: The Complete Television Series

Good citizens of Gotham, put your fears to rest. After decades of licensing hurdles between Fox and WB over the home video rights to this camp classic, Adam West's Batman has finally arrived on Blu-ray. Issued by WB, all 120 broadcast episodes from its three-season run have been included in this set.

The most important factor in transferring vintage film stock of this nature is a new film scan taken directly from the original camera negative. Batman's resolution and clarity at 1080P, not to mention the excellent color saturation and chromatic range from the colorful production design, could only be possible from a state-of-the-art film transfer. It is remarkable to see the Joker and the dastardly Penguin in such striking detail, not to mention that saucy minx, Catwoman.

Some minor digital touch-up has been manually applied to remove dirt and debris, the print is nearly pristine. A mistake was made that wiped out one element, a pebble, that should have been left intact. This is not a case where processing has altered the native grain structure of the original cinematography, fine detail is relatively abundant in scope. Warner has shown more restraint this time using the digital tools at their disposal, their technicians have wonderfully preserved Batman's adventures for posterity.

The interior shots exhibit better contrast and superior sharpness, shot on carefully controlled television sets under extremely bright lighting. Black levels are nearly perfect, rendered in inky darkness with fantastic shadow delineation. The color palette is far richer than I've ever seen it for this show, the new color-timing is slightly revisionist in nature but done with a skillful hand. While a purist might quibble with the slight changes in tonality and pop, I found it an invigorating experience. The flesh-tones are possibly too accurate, revealing the overly tanned flesh of Batman's sun-drenched, Californian cast.

Framed in its original broadcast ratio at 1.33:1, there have been complaints on some level regarding the anemic AVC video encode. I cannot lie, Warner Bros. foolishly pinched pennies by shaving off as many discs as they possibly could from the box set. All 120 episodes and bonus features are included on 13 BDs. That leaves very tight margins for the compression, aiming for target video encoding rates frequently below 15 Mbps. Adding two or three BD-50s for more space could have done wonders for the decidedly average encoding.

It is does leave the video encode open to rather minor compression artifacts. Batman's villains would often use smoke bombs or gases to trap the Dynamic Duo. On larger displays, you'll notice the encode struggling to accurately replicate their appearance without light noise. It is also inevitable that target rates that low will soften high-frequency detail. While my critique is pointed, the compression issues are rather minor and one can mostly ignore their impact.

Warner definitely spent the money and took its time on the most important element, a high-quality film scan handled by skilled technicians. The negative looks to have been in superb shape, lightly handled over the decades. The color correction helps bring new life to the show, showcasing the wide variety of colorful villains faced by Batman each episode. I wavered between Tiers 1.5 and 1.75 for placement, but extended viewing helped me settle on the higher score.

Tune in next week — same Bat-time, same Bat-channel!

recommendation: Tier 1.5*


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post #22055 of 22061 Old 11-20-2014, 04:09 PM
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Anyone else planning on checking out Planes:Fire and Rescue anytime soon? I am curious to see what others options are and if they think it is as strong as I do.
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post #22056 of 22061 Old 11-20-2014, 05:09 PM
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Vendetta

Not to be confused with 'V' for Vendetta, this is a small budget UK film featuring Danny Dyer.

And the small budget shows in the quality of the BR disc, for this was fraught with some anomalies, particularly in the first segment which featured some bizarre 'breaking face' effects in darker scenes, along with banding and blocking. Blacks were either crushed or greyed - there was little to enjoy from a PQ perspective - the best moments were some of the city night shots which showed a decent level of detail.

Tier 3.0
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post #22057 of 22061 Old 11-20-2014, 05:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wattheF View Post
Anyone else planning on checking out Planes:Fire and Rescue anytime soon? I am curious to see what others options are and if they think it is as strong as I do.
As an aside, Hollywood is pondering right now whether to make the huge leap to native 4K CGI animation. It would make all prior CGI films pale in comparison. As for the Planes spin-off, I haven't seen it. We all would love to hear a report on it.
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post #22058 of 22061 Old 11-21-2014, 06:30 PM
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Mickey's Once Upon A Christmas

recommendation: Tier 1.25*

Mickey's Twice Upon A Christmas

recommendation: Tier 0* (bottom quarter)

Disney decided to release these two animated movies in one set, including both of them on a BD-50. The packaging includes terms which have been abused by ad copy, stating they have been digitally remastered. In this particular case, it is entirely correct. Both of them look incredible on Blu-ray, representing a massive upgrade over their DVD counterparts. There really isn't one thing I would have done differently to improve this BD's picture quality. It is perfect.

Mickey's Once Upon A Christmas is an animated movie from 1999, done before the House of Mouse had begun switching to CGI animation. It is flawlessly presented, one of the best digital transfers possible for this kind of traditional animation. While its backgrounds are a little simplistic and this is not overly flashy art, it firmly deserves the high end of Tier One.

Mickey's Twice Upon A Christmas hails originally from 2004. This movie is completely animated in CGI animation with a far bolder color palette and richer saturation. One can tell the CGI is a little dated when held against today's CGI wonders from Pixar and DreamWorks. A couple of its shorts look truly brilliant, including a spectacular opening scene with deep black levels.
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post #22059 of 22061 Old Yesterday, 07:59 AM
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Thor: The Dark World

Whilst the film was a snoozefest the PQ was excellent. Black levels, clarity and contrast were all noteworthy - a sprinkling of softer shots just keeps it from Tier 0 but otherwise this disc looked great.

Tier 1.0
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post #22060 of 22061 Old Yesterday, 08:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rusky_g View Post
Thor: The Dark World

Whilst the film was a snoozefest the PQ was excellent. Black levels, clarity and contrast were all noteworthy - a sprinkling of softer shots just keeps it from Tier 0 but otherwise this disc looked great.

Tier 1.0
I concur with each point Russ! I placed it at 1.25 so we're basically on the same page.

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post #22061 of 22061 Old Yesterday, 10:50 AM
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Yet again Denny we are not far apart. I still haven't solved the issue I had with Begin Again but suspect its something to do with my set up running through my receiver as prior to that the issue was absent. This could be resolved once I get my new dual hdmi player which will just run a direct picture signal to my Sammy.
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