The Hunger Games: Catching Fire - iTunes vs. Vudu vs. Blu-ray - Page 2 - AVS Forum
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post #31 of 41 Old 04-21-2014, 12:13 PM
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Life of Pi in 3D is an example where the shifting AR was used artistically to enhance the 3D effect. For hunger games if the $$ sequences were going to be in 16:9 then I suspect I would enjoy the movie more if the whole thing was just 16:9.
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post #32 of 41 Old 06-05-2014, 07:38 AM
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Mark, to me the most surprising thing in this interesting series of threads was your observation that, for at least certain titles, iTunes 720p produced superior PQ to iTunes 1080p. Apple obviously wasn't looking to implement higher resolution to achieve lower PQ. Do you have an understanding of what went wrong, and based on your periodic sampling across the various content delivery options, has Apple fixed the issue?

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post #33 of 41 Old 06-05-2014, 09:17 AM
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Originally Posted by mogrub View Post

Mark, to me the most surprising thing in this interesting series of threads was your observation that, for at least certain titles, iTunes 720p produced superior PQ to iTunes 1080p. Apple obviously wasn't looking to implement higher resolution to achieve lower PQ. Do you have an understanding of what went wrong, and based on your periodic sampling across the various content delivery options, has Apple fixed the issue?

The 720p file probably wasn't as heavily compressed. 1080p has more data and so whomever mastered the video for Apple probably over cranked the compression, hence the 1080p version would appear to be inferior.

This will be a big issue for internet distribution of 4k media. That's why I want a robust physical disc as competition. If you only have one form of media... you have nothing to compare it to and no alternative if the downloaded file is poorly mastered.
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post #34 of 41 Old 06-07-2014, 09:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mogrub View Post

Mark, to me the most surprising thing in this interesting series of threads was your observation that, for at least certain titles, iTunes 720p produced superior PQ to iTunes 1080p. Apple obviously wasn't looking to implement higher resolution to achieve lower PQ. Do you have an understanding of what went wrong, and based on your periodic sampling across the various content delivery options, has Apple fixed the issue?
itunes 720p is ~4 Mbps
itunes 1080p is ~5 Mbps

1080p has 2.25x more pixels than 720p, but the bitrate was only increased by 20%. Because of this detail on 1080p suffers. I've seen some movies even lower where the bitrate is identical to the 720p version.

Here is an example of how bad it can get
http://screenshotcomparison.com/comparison/28741
His face looks like a wax sculpture on the 1080p and is detailed on the 720p.
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post #35 of 41 Old 06-07-2014, 11:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StinDaWg View Post

itunes 720p is ~4 Mbps
itunes 1080p is ~5 Mbps

1080p has 2.25x more pixels than 720p, but the bitrate was only increased by 20%. Because of this detail on 1080p suffers. I've seen some movies even lower where the bitrate is identical to the 720p version.

Here is an example of how bad it can get
http://screenshotcomparison.com/comparison/28741
His face looks like a wax sculpture on the 1080p and is detailed on the 720p.

It's worth noting that iTunes 720p is encoded using H.264 Main profile with CAVLC whereas iTunes 1080p uses High Profile and CABAC. (CABAC is supported Main Profile but they don't use it presumeably due to compatibility issues with some of their older devices.)

The net effect is something in the region of 15-25% encoding efficiency gain.

However I still agree with you entirely, they simply don't use enough bitrate for their 1080p and more often than not it looks noticeably worse than the 720p encode. I wish more people were aware of this.

The guys who do the encodes are fully aware that 5Mbps is not enough because they tend to use a lot of DNR on their 1080p sources in an attempt to improve compressibility. That's what you're seeing mostly in the linked comparison..and awful banding without the dithering effect that grain provides. Shows like Walking Dead in particular are awful in 1080p.
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post #36 of 41 Old 06-07-2014, 03:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StinDaWg View Post

itunes 720p is ~4 Mbps
itunes 1080p is ~5 Mbps

1080p has 2.25x more pixels than 720p, but the bitrate was only increased by 20%. Because of this detail on 1080p suffers.

Cool thanks. Sounds like for now at least, the general rule of thumb is that iTunes 720p will have better PQ than iTunes 1080p. That is completely insane, but I am glad to know it. I don't watch enough iTunes content to have caught snap on that, on my own, for a long time. And I would have been going out of my way to access the "better resolution" 1080p format on those rare occasions that I do watch iTunes content. Thanks DaWg.

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post #37 of 41 Old 06-07-2014, 03:04 PM
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I still agree with you entirely, they simply don't use enough bitrate for their 1080p and more often than not it looks noticeably worse than the 720p encode. I wish more people were aware of this ... The guys who do the encodes are fully aware that 5Mbps is not enough because they tend to use a lot of DNR on their 1080p sources in an attempt to improve compressibility.

For a company that has prided itself in the past on being all about the engineering, that just blows my mind.
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post #38 of 41 Old 06-07-2014, 04:03 PM
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Originally Posted by mogrub View Post

For a company that has prided itself in the past on being all about the engineering, that just blows my mind.

Yep, it's pretty ridiculous. It doesnt help the perception of digital delivery because of course most people will go for the 1080p option when available. They just assume it's better, and of course it should be.

We're going to see this type of crap all over again with 4K no doubt.
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post #39 of 41 Old 06-07-2014, 04:08 PM
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Originally Posted by mogrub View Post

For a company that has prided itself in the past on being all about the engineering, that just blows my mind.

They're all about the name Apple... nothing else. I wish their rabid fanboyz would figure that out. They also are on the short list of multi-national companies that treat their workers like cattle. Steve Jobs wasn't the saint the media likes to portray him as.
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post #40 of 41 Old 06-08-2014, 01:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mogrub View Post

Cool thanks. Sounds like for now at least, the general rule of thumb is that iTunes 720p will have better PQ than iTunes 1080p.
General rule of thumb is 1080p for animation (Family Guy, American Dad, ect) and 720p for live action. Animation compresses better so the lack of bitrate on 1080p isn't as detrimental to the quality. There are some exceptions where 1080p is better for live action, but they are few and far between.
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post #41 of 41 Old 06-08-2014, 09:57 AM
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General rule of thumb on CGI intensive content would also be 1080p, or does it not have the compression advantage of animation?

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