Ultraviolet - Disc to Digital Quality - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 4 Old 10-27-2012, 03:17 AM - Thread Starter
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First let me say I searched but couldn't find a thread on Ultraviolet quality - maybe I missed it sorry.

The option to upgrade some of my DVDs to Ultraviolet (VUDU HDX) at $5 could be interesting - but my actual experience cools my enthusiasm.

Today I did Disc to Digital on 'Blade Runner', 'Dark City' and 'The Fifth Element' - all DVD to HDX.

Video quality seems OK - 'Blade Runner' and 'Dark City' probably a little better than good DVD transfers and 'The Fifth Element' looked pretty good.

However both 'Dark City' and 'The Fifth Element' were 5.1 audio on the DVDs but only Dolby Digital 2.0 on the Ultraviolet (Vudu HDX).

So what is up with that - $5 to downgrade from 5.1 to 2.0 audio. Audio is very much part of the experience.

As I say I like the concept - but the content needs to be better for both video and audio if VUDU/studios would like another payment for content we already own.....
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post #2 of 4 Old 10-27-2012, 06:58 AM
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Originally Posted by undecided View Post

but my actual experience cools my enthusiasm.

Awhile back I did four titles of DVD to UV HDX, one of the titles was Mad Max: Beyond Thunder Dome. To my surprise the UV version of the movie was cropped and zoomed. That did it for me, no more DVD to UV HDX. Same with Netflix, I have removed many titles from my queue because they said they were in HD but when I went to view them they were cropped and zoomed.

For me, the Vudu HDX looks a little better than the DVD version but nothing to get excited about. In many cases the Netflix and Amazon HD versions do not match the DVD versions. Bottom line, I will keep my DVD titles and continue to add to my 350 Blu-ray titles. IMO, the whole IPTV streaming process is just one big CF.
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post #3 of 4 Old 10-29-2012, 06:31 AM
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I've noticed that some titles do not have Multi-Channel surround sound which is a little sad. My impression is that Vudu encodes/converts the movies to the HDX format from files that are provided to them. So it may be the studio's fault for that. Also it could be possible that they only received a SD quality copy but then digitally up-converted it to create the 1080P copy, much like a blu-ray player would do. This could explain some of the quality issues in the video/aduio if that was the case and would be a bit miss leading to advertise it as 1080p, if it was only SD upconverted to 1080p...

I really don't know if any of that is true though.

However, I wouldn't judge UltraViolet's quality yet.... The current providers, flixster, vudu and etc... are creating there own versions of the film for streaming. The common file format (CFF) for ultraviolet movies has not been officially released. These files are going to be standardized like the DVD and Blu-ray was for audio/video specifications. I would expect to see the files available at the end of this year or early next year. The files should provide consistent quality between any provider (vudu, flixster, studio site, etc).

Personally I would never recommend buying digital movies only. The reason is, what if UltraViolet closed shop and now your left without your movies in the future? That aside, I have converted almost every film that I have using D2D (only blu-rays) because it is cheap and convenient. I also purchase and redeem all movies that have UltraViolet codes and will pretty much only be buying movies that contain a code or can be D2D (unless it's just a must have film). My reason for this is because I see the potential in the system to remove the work out of having to maintain a server, htpc and other components to essentially build my own network of movies/tv with correct metadata. UltraViolet is convenient to use and the metadata is typically correct because it was done by the studio/provider. I don't foresee the system going away but I still believe it's best to always buy physical copies of the movies and TV. This way if the system closes shop, I can simply go back to ripping my own media and building my own library like I've previously done because I have all the films/tv on disc (can't do that using other providers such as apple/xbox video/etc).

Also, I tend to watch the movies and shows that I buy on disc only through Vudu or a UltaViolet provider with the exception of 3D movie releases. I recently watched "A friend for the end of the world" last week in HDX and was really impressed with the quality. I also picked up a copy of Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter in 3D and redeemed it, but I'm going to watch it in 3D via the disc instead of streaming it.

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post #4 of 4 Old 10-30-2012, 01:09 PM
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Even at HDX quality, there are compression artifacts which aren't on the Blu-Ray.
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