Pans Labyrinth Pics & Impressions - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 275 Old 12-20-2007, 10:59 PM - Thread Starter
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I went to one of my local BB's tonight looking for The Kingdom, I was rewarded by finding Pans Labyrinth instead. One of my most eagerly awaited titles this year. Needless to say i'm blown away by it. This disc makes the DVD look like VHS! Completely destroys the DVD.

PQ-This is gonna be a demo disc pure & simple. This is one of the sharpest most detailed transfers of a film I have seen. Believe it, this baby is as sharp as a tack! The only flaw I could see as the review at DVDtown pointed out is some really orange looking skin tones. I hate to say that's a flaw because it was like that in the theater and this is pure nitpicking. Other than that, you will be amazed at the amount of depth and pop to the picture. It brings out the beauty of the cinematography and lighting so magnificently, this is a beautifully shot film and the HD version amplifies it to the utmost degree. I cannot believe the amazing job New Line Cinema has done on their 1st HD-DVD title. I can't imagine anyone not owning this title.

AQ-I still don't have a receiver capable of decoding DTS-HD Master Audio so I'm only able to hear the "core" DTS 1.5 mbps track off of my HD-XA2. However, that alone is a vast improvement over the DVD's awesome DTS track. LFE and ambient sounds benefit tremendously from the higher resolution track. Birds, wind, trees cracking...etc are so much more prominent in this version and the LFE packs some ooomph and is as tight and deep as you can get. Pure reference all the way.

Side notes:The disc detected my ethernet connection and asked if I wanted to connect for the latest disc update. I declined as my XA-2 is running 2.7 but an interesting feature I thought worth noting. Also the PIP commentary worked flawlessly and is pretty interesting. I have not played with the web-enhanced features yet but will edit this post once I have.

Here's the pics...my cameras battery died halfway through...Some are better than others...one of the pics shows off the PIP commentary. Enjoy!

http://img507.imageshack.us/my.php?image=0000273mt5.jpg
http://img177.imageshack.us/my.php?image=0000274rt8.jpg
http://img177.imageshack.us/my.php?image=0000275sy0.jpg
http://img258.imageshack.us/my.php?image=0000277iu4.jpg
http://img258.imageshack.us/my.php?image=0000278gi4.jpg
http://img442.imageshack.us/my.php?image=0000279gl3.jpg The PIP pic
http://img505.imageshack.us/my.php?image=0000280ii5.jpg
http://img505.imageshack.us/my.php?image=0000281sk4.jpg
http://img256.imageshack.us/my.php?image=0000282zm2.jpg The pic that's closest to the actual screen quality!
http://img256.imageshack.us/my.php?image=0000283rm1.jpg
http://img265.imageshack.us/my.php?image=0000284ka2.jpg
http://img265.imageshack.us/my.php?image=0000285vf1.jpg
http://img519.imageshack.us/my.php?image=0000286yc1.jpg
http://img265.imageshack.us/my.php?image=0000287ok5.jpg Another pretty pic that shows off the pop!
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post #2 of 275 Old 12-20-2007, 11:04 PM
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Thanks for posting your comments. Looks awesome but oversaturated. Hope it's your camera.
Mods, Please merge all PL related thread.

Blu-ray : 340
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post #3 of 275 Old 12-20-2007, 11:09 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lgans316 View Post

Thanks for posting your comments. Looks awesome but oversaturated. Hope it's your camera.
Mods, Please merge all PL related thread.

Some of the shots are...my camera tends to do it if it's slightly off angle taking screen shots. The 4th & 9th pic in general are nowhere near that saturated on screen. I was in kind of a rush with the dying battery and all.
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post #4 of 275 Old 12-20-2007, 11:16 PM
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Judging from the various stateside reviews it looks like U.S version has gone through a separate encode. Hope that there is no DNR+EE. Good news.

Blu-ray : 340
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post #5 of 275 Old 12-20-2007, 11:20 PM
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Can't wait till Sunday! B2G1 Free at BB will pay for this!
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post #6 of 275 Old 12-20-2007, 11:20 PM
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I agree that the PQ is pure demo material (I own the movie on Blu-ray). Lovely pics but I noticed that they have a red tint on them. Is your display calibrated ?

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post #7 of 275 Old 12-20-2007, 11:23 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lgans316 View Post

Judging from the various stateside reviews it looks like U.S version has gone through a separate encode. Hope that there is no DNR+EE. Good news.

Despite the off color skin tones, it is pretty near flawless as far as I could tell. I was worried, I remember while watching in the theater thinking that it would look fantastic in hi-def if done right but could be just kind of so-so in the wrong hands. Thankfully New Line has given it a tremendous amount of TLC!
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post #8 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 01:00 AM
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it's funny... i still haven't watched the SD-DVD version i bought
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post #9 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 01:39 AM
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The grain has disappeared on the BD/HD. Which were there on broadcasts + French HD DVD.

Shame.
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post #10 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 01:42 AM
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Does this mean that DNR has been applied ?

Blu-ray : 340
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post #11 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 03:55 AM
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Just a note about the auto-update... I've seen this on some other discs. I don't think it's related to your firmware, but the disc itself. I've had some discs download updates, though I don't know what they actually did I look at it as a simple "title update" like you would see with a game on Xbox Live (if you can relate to that).

When I saw this movie in theaters I knew it would be demo material on HDM. Too bad I'm completely broke from Christmas and won't be able to pick this up till later.
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post #12 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 06:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by House View Post

The grain has disappeared on the BD/HD. Which were there on broadcasts + French HD DVD.

Shame.

If the US used DNR I won't support it, especially if the French HD DVD has the grain.
I guess they wanted to make a "pretty" transfer more then an accurate one. These pic's don't look right. It's like they took away part of the atmosphere with this transfer. I guess these are only a digital camera, but the fact the grain is gone suggests to me I need to avoid this like the plague. Thanks for warning me OP.
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post #13 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 10:09 AM
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i just checked the import guide and saw the french import is still upcoming and has english subtitles? i thought it had already been released with either locked french subs, or no english subs? guess i'm confusing it with t2 or something.

- Chris
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post #14 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 10:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tkbryant View Post

Also the PIP commentary worked flawlessly and is pretty interesting. I have not played with the web-enhanced features yet but will edit this post once I have.

Awesome! I didn't know it was going to have a PIP commentary.

I thought the BD & HD DVD were going to be the same? Anyone know if the PIP and web-enhanced features on the BD also?
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post #15 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 10:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by agnathra View Post

i just checked the import guide and saw the french import is still upcoming and has english subtitles? i thought it had already been released with either locked french subs, or no english subs? guess i'm confusing it with t2 or something.

If you're in the US, what would be the purpose of importing the French version? The US version released in a few days should have the original Spanish soundtrack w/ English sub-titles.
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post #16 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 10:24 AM
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Definately buying this. Great movie.
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post #17 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 10:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by obispo21 View Post

If you're in the US, what would be the purpose of importing the French version? The US version released in a few days should have the original Spanish soundtrack w/ English sub-titles.

an earlier poster was concerned about the encode quality of the domestic version. IF they are different encodes, the french version may be worth checking out.

the domestic version looks fantastic to me, based on those screenshots. if it's not in my xmas stocking i'll definitely be getting it next week.

- Chris
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post #18 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 11:09 AM
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the french version has english subs???

i thought it didn't....if it doesn't, then what's the point of importing it? unless you speak spanish.
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post #19 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 11:14 AM
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The French Release hasnt English Subtitles. The French Subtitles are burned if you see the movie in Spanish.
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post #20 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 12:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by House View Post

The grain has disappeared on the BD/HD. Which were there on broadcasts + French HD DVD.

Shame.

Noooo. Not again.

First they release Hairspray without the slightest hint of natural film grain and now a gritty movie like Pans Labyrinth....


What is it with Warner/New Line -> "optimizing" their releases for J6P with <= 50" flat panels. Filtering out any hint of grain, resulting in this distinct signature Warner look -> "smooth". Yes, it may look rather "nice" for the casual eye on small displays sitting far far away - but trust me - Warner titles in general are NOT very enjoyable from a "definition" point of view watching them on a truely revealing FP setup...

It all started with The Last Samurai - continued with a Batman Begins release (that btw can look so very nice on mediocre setups...) which is so smooth, without the hint of grain that it has to be a DNR fans (yes, there are people out there enjoying a smooth look, sadly they are even the majority) wet dream - and finally this "policy" is now adapted for New Line releases as well. Hairspray is questionable.

If an outstanding movie like Pans Labyrinth (easily in my top 10 of all times) becomes just another worst case example of extensive DNR it is a disgrace. (Well, I guess it will still score very high with our well respected "professional" reviewers out there (expect 5 stars), so everything is so very well )

PLEASE HOUSE post some screen caps. This is THE release of the year for me - Pans Labyrinth without grain is unthinkable.
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post #21 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 12:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheLion View Post


PLEASE HOUSE post some screen caps. This is THE release of the year for me - Pans Labyrinth without grain is unthinkable.

canceled my Amazon order, until I see some Xylon screencaps

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post #22 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 12:34 PM
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Why are you guys saying the HDM releases have no grain. Those pics could be off because of the camera or the lighting or any number of reasons.

Hairspray had very light grain.

Some of the shots in Pan's look like they have no grain. I'm sure New Line's transfer will be faithful to the intended presentation.

Here's a link to the original trailer(HD)
http://www.apple.com/trailers/pictur...slabyrinth/hd/

There is supposed to be grain but a few shots are supper clean.

Ridiculous codec tier sig gone. Still AVC/24bit lossless fanboy.

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post #23 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 12:58 PM
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Here's a quick and dirty comparison between the BD (should be same encode as the HD) and the Sky HD broadcast.

BD;

Broadcast;


If you look closely, the broadcast has a very fine layer of grain over the image. The woman's cheek, the car door, the tree line, the general's face/neck, the solider in the background... not there on the BD encode.

(Yes, I can see that the BD has better detail on the general's right shoulder - bear in mind this is a broadcast, it's not perfect, but pretty damn good.)

BD;

Broadcast;


This one should be much more obvious. Again the general's face, the other solider, their clothing. Fine grain on the broadcast, none on the BD.

While you could dismiss this and just say "oh, well the New Line HD/BD still looks pretty damn good", the French HD DVD has the same detail *and* the grain. Why can't the New Line offering do that? I don't have the French version on hand, will have to wait till after the holidays before I can add those screens. But I've watched that a few times, the broadcast a few times, and I've seen the movie digitally (2k DLP), and that had grain too. When I started watching the New Line disc, I knew something was immediately amiss. It's much more obvious and disheartening in motion.

EDIT: Whoops, I meant "Captain". As many times as I've seen it, I forgot that
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post #24 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 01:00 PM
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Well, I'm not buying this until we know for sure about the DNR.
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post #25 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 01:16 PM
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An editor on DVDtalk had this to say regarding the DNR;

I can confirm that. I wasn't happy with the DNR on the transfer at all. Bad form, New Line.

http://forum.dvdtalk.com/showpost.ph...9&postcount=58

Well, this sucks!!!

I don't know how anyone can say this is a good transfer if it's not accurate. I'm sure some equipment junkies will be happy, but for people who buy dvd's for the film itself, it's a kick in the balls.

Way to ruin the atmosphere and feel of the movie New Line!!
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post #26 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 01:22 PM
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Isn't the Sky Broadcast MPEG2?
It looks like it could be noise too.

I'll have to watch it myself. But those screens are miles beyond the DVD.
There's nothing that should stop anyone from picking this one up.

Ridiculous codec tier sig gone. Still AVC/24bit lossless fanboy.

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post #27 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 01:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by House View Post

Here's a quick and dirty comparison between the BD (should be same encode as the HD) and the Sky HD broadcast.

BD;

Broadcast;


If you look closely, the broadcast has a very fine layer of grain over the image. The woman's cheek, the car door, the tree line, the general's face/neck, the solider in the background... not there on the BD encode.

(Yes, I can see that the BD has better detail on the general's right shoulder - bear in mind this is a broadcast, it's not perfect, but pretty damn good.)

BD;

Broadcast;


This one should be much more obvious. Again the general's face, the other solider, their clothing. Fine grain on the broadcast, none on the BD.

While you could dismiss this and just say "oh, well the New Line HD/BD still looks pretty damn good", the French HD DVD has the same detail *and* the grain. Why can't the New Line offering do that? I don't have the French version on hand, will have to wait till after the holidays before I can add those screens. But I've watched that a few times, the broadcast a few times, and I've seen the movie digitally (2k DLP), and that had grain too. When I started watching the New Line disc, I knew something was immediately amiss. It's much more obvious and disheartening in motion.

Thank you so much - this settles it then.

The caps from the New Line encoding are a disgrace to this GREAT movie!

New Lines low bitrate Pans Labyrinth encode is the usual Warner way of presenting movies to the masses - heavy filtering, each hint of natural film look victim to obsessive DNR, smooth and clean. Enjoyable and desireable for J6P.
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post #28 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 01:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shadowrage View Post

Isn't the Sky Broadcast MPEG2?
It looks like it could be noise too.

I'll have to watch it myself. But those screens are miles beyond the DVD.
There's nothing that should stop anyone from picking this one up.

PLEASE, the faces in the New Line shots look like plastic masks - no texture - only filtered detail. If you like THAT be my guest - there are LOTS of people out there who admire Warner for their P"Q".

btw Sky HD transmits in high-bitrate AVC - constant bitrate as high as ~20MBit/s
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post #29 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 01:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheLion View Post

Thank you so much - this settles it then.

The caps from the New Line encoding are a disgrace to this GREAT movie!

New Lines low bitrate Pans Labyrinth encode is the usual Warner way of presenting movies to the masses - heavy filtering, each hint of natural film look victim to obsessive DNR, smooth and clean. Enjoyable and desireable for J6P.

This is what many studios will do trying to reach Joe Q.

Why? because to them, HD is like watching SportsCenter or Disovery Channel. Where the image is very smooth and always 3D like.
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post #30 of 275 Old 12-21-2007, 01:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by benes View Post

Sky is AVC. With bitrates usually approaching 20Mbps.

Edit: I'll try to get some shots from the French HDDVD.

You beat me to it

I would REALLY appreciate screen caps from the French HDDVD - it is MUCH better. Also - is there anyone with the recent German Pans Labyrinth release - it sadly resambles the DNR look of the US release...
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