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The New PQ Tier thread for Blu-Ray - Discussion - Page 654

post #19591 of 21410
Since Titanic is James Cameron's baby and it made him "King Of The World" in his own words, I imagine he went over the transfer with a fine-tooth comb as he usually does for each release of it. I remember the DVD being a reference standard when it was first released.
post #19592 of 21410
Cop Land

Coming from the Stallone 3-film collection, this is the same disc as the standard release. Don't get excited. Clear signs of edge enhancement and DNR mar a transfer that if done well, could be something special. The print is clearly holding something special with all of this fine detail, but it collapses as soon as the camera pans back. Murky, plastic people are not appealing.

Tier 3.0*
post #19593 of 21410
Moneyball

recommendation: 2.0

Almost everyone that has chimed in already thought Moneyball deserved to be ranked in Tier 1.75. It does have fantastic detail, though I noticed frequent ringing problems. To be fair, the sharpening is mild and smaller displays will obscure it a bit. Another trait of Moneyball is the authentic standard-definition footage of the baseball highlights, which is common enough in the narrative to lower my personal score of the disc. There are already too many votes for Tier 1.75 for my score to alter its placement, but I'm not sure Moneyball deserves to be in Tier One.
post #19594 of 21410
Snow White and the Huntsman
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gamereviewgod View Post

Snow White and the Huntsman
Super sharpness highlights this lavish production with rich production values that offers up plenty to define. Locations are stunning and costumes are gorgeous. Colors are muted but have a real density to them. Black levels are gorgeous and contrast is perky when it needs to be. Great looking disc with a lot of high points.
Tier 1.75*

Laziness dictates tonight so I'm only going to add two or three observations to the points in GRG's review. There were definitely SOFT SHOTS sprinkled throughout the film and a few scenes with MURKY BLACKS (these were nighttime scenes where the black bars on my KURO and the nighttime sky were definitely NOT inky black but rather a dark gray). I'll also mention that facial details, though exemplary at times, fell short of demo-worthy in numerous scenes. In view of these shortcomings I'm going to drop the recommendation a notch....

Tier Recommendation: 2.0*

Pioneer 60" KURO Elite (1080p/24)....Pioneer Elite 05....Viewed from 7.5'
post #19595 of 21410
Raiders of the Lost Ark

Color timing has definitely been turned warm, an odd motion artifact is visible early, and some chroma noise is visible in spots, but overall, Raiders is impressive. Textural detail is high, and the source photography is maintained. That means some softness from the lens, but not enough to mar this into oblivion. Dense blacks keep a tight image, and the image is free of source damage.

Tier 2.25*
post #19596 of 21410
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gamereviewgod View Post

Raiders of the Lost Ark
Color timing has definitely been turned warm, an odd motion artifact is visible early, and some chroma noise is visible in spots, but overall, Raiders is impressive. Textural detail is high, and the source photography is maintained. That means some softness from the lens, but not enough to mar this into oblivion. Dense blacks keep a tight image, and the image is free of source damage.
Tier 2.25*

I have been a fan of the "Indy" series (except for the dreadful Crystal Skull debacle) and have been anticipating the Blu-rays for years. I've read that the third installment has the best PQ, followed by #2 and #1 (I could care less about #4). I'll look forward to your take on the next two.
post #19597 of 21410
Quote:
Originally Posted by djoberg View Post

Thor


It's always a bit daunting writing the first review/tier recommendation for a new title, but I'll take a stab at it. For the most part, I was quite pleased with the transfer, though it was not without its flaws/anomalies.


Let me start with the BLACKS...they were EXCELLENT!! They were easily the greatest redeeming feature. Deep and inky from start to finish, and always serving to enhance depth and dimensionality, as well as surrounding colors. Shadow details were just as impressive. You will NOT be disappointed in this department, I can assure you!


COLORS were also a visual treat, whether one is viewing Asgard, the kingdom of the Frost Giants (I can't remember its name), or the deserts of New Mexico. Some will no doubt complain of the orange/teal hues strewn throughout, but I actually didn't mind it with everything else that was going on.


DETAILS were lacking, IMHO, though it had its moments when the director chose to zoom into an actor or object. There were a couple of close-ups of Anthony Hopkins that bordered on Tier 0/Tier 1, but this was the exception and not the rule (most facial details were only average). Medium and long-distance shots just didn't do it for me, except on a couple of rare occasions.


SHARPNESS and CLARITY were present in some scenes, but softness kept rearing its ugly head sporadically.


This is a hard one for me to rate, though in comparing it to my recent viewing of X-Men: First Class, which I rated at 2.0, I would have to say it was a notch better. Having said that, I just can't bring myself to label this a demo disc, so I'm going with....

Tier Recommendation: 2.0*


Pioneer 60" KURO Elite (1080p/24)....Pioneer Elite 05....Viewed from 7.5'


PS I simply MUST say something about the audio track...WOW!!!!!! This is, by far, the most dynamic track I've listened to in a very long time. I was wondering if my Velodyne Sub was going to survive the beating it took; it had the walls of my new Home Theater room shaking BIG TIME. And the action in the surrounds was AMAZING! For all you audio lovers out there, be prepared for AUDIO NIRVANA!
Thor

recommendation: 1.5


I would disagree with Denny's conclusion that Thor lacked fine detail. It was about the only thing I noticed after mentally checking out on the plot. Yes, whenever a scene is set in a pure CGI setting the picture goes very soft for a new film. The bulk of the movie however looks shot at real locations and on physical sets, where the detail is easily on par with discs ranked in Tier 1.25/1.5. For a summer blockbuster there is hardly any use of de-focusing or filtering, leaving an unmolested picture with excellent high-frequency content. That makes for a highly revealing image, as one can easily see the caps on Natalie Portman's teeth or other details that would be impossible to notice on a lesser disc in the Tiers. Denny was entirely correct about the audio, it's a reference quality mix.

Thor looks vastly better than X-Men: First Class, which I thought barely deserved to be ranked anywhere in Tier 2, due to the horribly soft CGI elements and other problems.

BDInfo scan (courtesy of Patsfan123):
http://www.avsforum.com/t/1155731/new-unofficial-blu-ray-audio-and-video-specifications-thread/3420#post_21025158
post #19598 of 21410
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phantom Stranger View Post

Thor
recommendation: 1.5

I would disagree with Denny's conclusion that Thor lacked fine detail. It was about the only thing I noticed after mentally checking out on the plot. Yes, whenever a scene is set in a pure CGI setting the picture goes very soft for a new film. The bulk of the movie however looks shot at real locations and on physical sets, where the detail is easily on par with discs ranked in Tier 1.25/1.5. For a summer blockbuster there is hardly any use of de-focusing or filtering, leaving an unmolested picture with excellent high-frequency content. That makes for a highly revealing image, as one can easily see the caps on Natalie Portman's teeth or other details that would be impossible to notice on a lesser disc in the Tiers. Denny was entirely correct about the audio, it's a reference quality mix.

I own this disc Phantom so I might have to view it again to see if I misjudged the details. I did a Search and I see that GRG gave it a 2.25 and patrick99 a 2.0, so the consensus before your review was a Tier 2 placement. Killer AQ though; we surely agree on that. cool.gif
post #19599 of 21410
Quote:
Originally Posted by djoberg View Post

The Hunger Games
Lionsgate had their work cut out for them with a production this big...and they did NOT disappoint! This was, for the majority of its 140 minute running time, quite stunning!
I agree with GRG that it had some soft shots (very sporadic) and the black levels *could* be weak at night (but they could also be inky with beautiful shadow details). These were actually minimal (as intimated above when I stated the majority of the film was stunning).
I don't agree with GRG's statement, "Colors are flat and typically two-tone." In fact, I can't believe he said this, for only the first few scenes, inside the District 12, could be characterized as such. Once the two leads came to the arena where the Games were held, colors popped big time (EYE CANDY, for sure). The many, many forest scenes yielded drop-dead gorgeous shots with lush greens and phenomenal details/depth. Facial details were topnotch, easily Tier 0 quality in 90% of the close-ups. Flesh tones were accurate and contrast was strong. Another pleasing aspect of this "film" was the "film-like look," with a fine layer of grain gracing the entire production. This is most definitely "demo material."
There were enough soft shots and less-than-stellar black levels to keep this out of the top tier, but IMHO it should easily land in Tier Gold. I'm thinking right here....
Tier Recommendation: 1.5*
Pioneer 60" KURO Elite (1080p/24)....Pioneer Elite 05....Viewed from 7.5'

I found the PQ on this to be extremely satisfying, with the exception of a very few soft shots, and a few shots with very fake-looking backgrounds. Nice to see a proper presentation, with the extras all on a separate disc from the movie. Too bad this isn't done more often.

Tier 1.25*
post #19600 of 21410
Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom

Weakest of the four by means of a digital coating. It's the least film-like. Edgy ridges, mild halos, and the slightest hints of aliasing are noticeable, and it effects the entire image whether those are visible or not. That said, the tremendous level of fine detail, solid black levels, and lack of drastic color timing changes means it's not all bad. It looks too good to hate.

Tier 2.5*
post #19601 of 21410
Quote:
Originally Posted by djoberg View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Phantom Stranger View Post

Thor
recommendation: 1.5

I would disagree with Denny's conclusion that Thor lacked fine detail. It was about the only thing I noticed after mentally checking out on the plot. Yes, whenever a scene is set in a pure CGI setting the picture goes very soft for a new film. The bulk of the movie however looks shot at real locations and on physical sets, where the detail is easily on par with discs ranked in Tier 1.25/1.5. For a summer blockbuster there is hardly any use of de-focusing or filtering, leaving an unmolested picture with excellent high-frequency content. That makes for a highly revealing image, as one can easily see the caps on Natalie Portman's teeth or other details that would be impossible to notice on a lesser disc in the Tiers. Denny was entirely correct about the audio, it's a reference quality mix.

I own this disc Phantom so I might have to view it again to see if I misjudged the details. I did a Search and I see that GRG gave it a 2.25 and patrick99 a 2.0, so the consensus before your review was a Tier 2 placement. Killer AQ though; we surely agree on that. cool.gif
The scenes on the Rainbow Bridge are very soft with only moderate resolution, but I found most of the action on Earth to be razor-sharp with excellent detail. I am pointing out Thor only because it's appreciably more detailed than others in its genre, such as Captain America or the aforementioned X-Men: First Class. The production of Thor looks deftly filmed compared to the low-pass filtered transfers I see these days from other summer action movies.
post #19602 of 21410
Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade

While suffering from the same issues as Temple, including the sharpening, it's not as impactful on the overall imagery. Exteriors are clean and natural as opposed to a bunch of digital fuzz. Tight photography is beneficial to the piece with remarkable fine detail. Color has a balance that feels '80s vintage yet impressive.

2.25*
post #19603 of 21410
Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull (Complete Adventures version)

This looks identical to the 2008 version currently ranked in Tier 1. Maybe someone will see it differently, but I can't imagine what has changed. With time, it doesn't really belong that high. The level of filters used, the bleaching contrast, and other elements dim too much detail. Still a looker, but not what it once was.

Tier 1.75*
post #19604 of 21410
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gamereviewgod View Post

Raiders of the Lost Ark
Color timing has definitely been turned warm, an odd motion artifact is visible early, and some chroma noise is visible in spots, but overall, Raiders is impressive. Textural detail is high, and the source photography is maintained. That means some softness from the lens, but not enough to mar this into oblivion. Dense blacks keep a tight image, and the image is free of source damage.
Tier 2.25*

I think you were kind on the rating. It's pretty soft, at times blurry, and mediocre black levels.

Raiders of the Lost Ark - 2.75
leaning more toward 3.
post #19605 of 21410
Rescuers - Tier 1.75

Rescuers Down Under - Tier 2


Both look great, but Down Under felt a little dull and dated at times.
post #19606 of 21410
Quote:
Originally Posted by tfoltz View Post

I think you were kind on the rating. It's pretty soft, at times blurry, and mediocre black levels.

Raiders of the Lost Ark - 2.75
leaning more toward 3.

From what I've read this series isn't as good as I had hoped. So, I doubt that I will be spending nearly $70 on this set, especially given the fact that I detest the Crystal Skull and I'm not that fond of The Temple of Doom. I'll probably wait for them to be released as singles and then I'll purchase installments #1 and #3. But even then, with PQ not being "demo-worthy," I may wait until the price is reduced significantly.

Tonight I plan to watch the new release of Titanic. I'm excited, given the praise that's coming from every quarter, with most reviewers on Cinema Squid's site giving the PQ a score of 100!cool.gif
post #19607 of 21410
Quote:
Originally Posted by djoberg View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by tfoltz View Post

I think you were kind on the rating. It's pretty soft, at times blurry, and mediocre black levels.

Raiders of the Lost Ark - 2.75
leaning more toward 3.

From what I've read this series isn't as good as I had hoped. So, I doubt that I will be spending nearly $70 on this set, especially given the fact that I detest the Crystal Skull and I'm not that fond of The Temple of Doom. I'll probably wait for them to be released as singles and then I'll purchase installments #1 and #3. But even then, with PQ not being "demo-worthy," I may wait until the price is reduced significantly.
That mirrors my line of thinking quite well on the Indy box set. I already own Crystal Skull and the other transfers seem satisfactory at best for such a beloved franchise. We'll probably see better transfers of the Indiana Jones' movies down the line, in a special edition box.
post #19608 of 21410
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phantom Stranger View Post

That mirrors my line of thinking quite well on the Indy box set. I already own Crystal Skull and the other transfers seem satisfactory at best for such a beloved franchise. We'll probably see better transfers of the Indiana Jones' movies down the line, in a special edition box.

I haven't finished viewing the discs and collecting my thoughts, but my initial impression is that they are way better than the Star Wars set, which seemed to average about 2.75 here, and better than the Superman set, which you and I both liked.

It's got some fluctuating black levels and softness owing to photography/title cards. But time after time I find myself thinking "why couldn't Star Wars have looked like this?"

More to come when I have time to really look at everything.
post #19609 of 21410
Titanic (1997)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gamereviewgod View Post

Titanic (1997)
Truly stunning work in terms of depth, detail, and contrast. This one is a total stunner. Color timing has been changed slightly without any detriment to the overall image. Compression is excellent considering the length and single disc nature of the film. A handful of trouble shots are seconds in length. Effects shots show some light age, but are still passable. There's way too much to praise to find much fault.
Tier 1.25*

I couldn't agree more with my colleague on this one....an absolute *stunner* throughout the majority of the 3+ hour running time. I kept saying to myself, "This is most definitely a candidate for Tier Blu," and then softness would creep in (this happened sporadically and often enough to drop it down from the coveted Tier 0 ranking). There were also a couple of shots where a very dark scene revealed dark gray bars that failed to blend in with my bezel. These were rare though, for most black levels were deep and inky with exquisite shadow details. Flesh tones were spot on....contrast was super strong....colors were brilliants....details were phenomenal (especially facial close-ups)....and sharpness and clarity were amazing (with the exception of the soft shots alluded to earlier). If you're a fan of this movie you simply have to pick up a copy. I actually purchased the copy with the 3D version included for future use. smile.gifcool.gif

Tier Recommendation: 1.0*

Pioneer 60" KURO Elite (1080p/24)....Pioneer Elite 05....Viewed from 6.5'

PS For those who appreciate good audio, this was REFERENCE quality!
post #19610 of 21410
30 Days Of Night: Dark Days

recommendation: Tier 1.75


For a sequel that I'm not sure made it to theaters, Dark Days has a high-quality transfer with a crisp HD experience. Excellent shadow detail and only the faintest hint of noise in darker scenes. Razor-sharp definition in close-ups and medium-range shots.

Halloween II (2009)

recommendation: Tier 4.0


Did amateurs film this movie? One of the poorest-shot films of the past decade from a major studio, with erratic lighting and overly noisy grain.
post #19611 of 21410
Raiders of the Lost Ark (box set)


The start of the opening sequence, which features optically composited title cards, looks atrocious. Luckily for us, things settle down immediately after the credits end. There is the one weird motion blur that some have mentioned, also in the opening sequence.

The rest of the film has no evident smoothing, sharpening, or EE as far as I can tell. Detail is middling in most shots but quite good in close-ups. Focus effects and lens distortions diminish detail on the edges of shots most of the time. Black levels fluctuate but never cripplingly so. Grain is present and veers into somewhat noisy territory in dark scenes.

Overall, I can't help but have the Star Wars OT BDs in mind when I watch this. And this is superior, in my book, to at least two of them, especially Ep.4. It has none of the weird frozen grain or obvious processing halos around characters. The colors are equally good. Close-up detail is stronger. So I'm with GRG, and think it's a 2.25. I think it looks about as good as we can expect from a movie of this vintage and shot in this style.

Tier Recommendation: 2.25
post #19612 of 21410
Quote:
Originally Posted by djoberg View Post

Snow White and the Huntsman
Laziness dictates tonight so I'm only going to add two or three observations to the points in GRG's review. There were definitely SOFT SHOTS sprinkled throughout the film and a few scenes with MURKY BLACKS (these were nighttime scenes where the black bars on my KURO and the nighttime sky were definitely NOT inky black but rather a dark gray). I'll also mention that facial details, though exemplary at times, fell short of demo-worthy in numerous scenes. In view of these shortcomings I'm going to drop the recommendation a notch....
Tier Recommendation: 2.0*
Pioneer 60" KURO Elite (1080p/24)....Pioneer Elite 05....Viewed from 7.5'

My one-word review of this: soft.

Tier 2.5*
post #19613 of 21410
Quote:
Originally Posted by Phantom Stranger View Post

Since Titanic is James Cameron's baby and it made him "King Of The World" in his own words, I imagine he went over the transfer with a fine-tooth comb as he usually does for each release of it. I remember the DVD being a reference standard when it was first released.

The first DVD was non-anamorphic though...
post #19614 of 21410
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tompa View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Phantom Stranger View Post

Since Titanic is James Cameron's baby and it made him "King Of The World" in his own words, I imagine he went over the transfer with a fine-tooth comb as he usually does for each release of it. I remember the DVD being a reference standard when it was first released.

The first DVD was non-anamorphic though...
It might have been the second DVD I was thinking about.

Dylan Dog: Dead Of Night

recommendation: Tier 3.5*

A strong AVC video encode can't save this movie from looking somewhat shabby for a newer release. Clipped black levels, a garish color timing, and certain scenes that inexplicably drop in resolution, Dylan Dog does not look filmed with high definition in mind. I would have no qualms if someone suggested Tier 4.0 for it. The digital colorist went crazy on the orange hues, the first half has people looking more like pumpkins than real flesh.

BDInfo scan:

http://www.avsforum.com/t/1155731/new-unofficial-blu-ray-audio-and-video-specifications-thread/3540_60#post_21143675
post #19615 of 21410
Avengers Assemble (UK)

Incredibly sharp, saturated and detailed. Facial details looks stunning. Amazing CGI work with very little motion blur / softness. The biggest culprit is the first 30 minutes which looks a bit too dark and dangerously close to AVP2. Some may feel that I was too liberal with my rating but to my eyes it looked exceptional after the 31 minute mark.

A very entertaining movie but a bit too long.

Recommendation: Tier 0.75
Edited by lgans316 - 9/22/12 at 3:29pm
post #19616 of 21410
A Nightmare On Elm Street (1984)

recommendation: Tier 3.75

Freddy Krueger receives a solid transfer from New Line/Warner Bros. with a VC-1 video encode (remember them?) at an average bitrate of 27.59 Mbps. The film-like image retains some grain, though it wouldn't surprise me if a little digital clean-up has been performed. Shadow depth and delineation is excellent, crucial to a horror film of this type. It's not the sharpest picture you'll come across in spots, but the print is free of damage and looks in healthy shape. I'm mostly covering this disc because I thought the current placement in Tier 2.0 was very high. A good-looking catalog disc for what it is but Freddy can't compete with the newer movies in Tier 2. Don't mistake my score for criticism, fans will love the way this particular BD has turned out.

BDInfo scan:
http://www.avsforum.com/t/1243165/a-nightmare-on-elm-street-comparison-pix#post_18491896
post #19617 of 21410
Jaws

A decent restoration effort overall but easily the best by a long shot from the notorious Universal. There seems to be a certain degree of scrubbing plus a touch of sharpening which is quite noticeable on the facial close ups. Otherwise, this looks great as there are plenty of detailed and well defined outdoor shots. What I like about the restoration is the new color timing and contrast which are mostly spot on.

To me, Jaws and Spielberg's Duel are kind of films that rekindles the interest in movie watching.

Recommendation: Tier 2.5
Edited by lgans316 - 9/23/12 at 12:39pm
post #19618 of 21410
Anyone here watched Hatfields & McCoys? It looks absolutely amazing for a short mini-series.
post #19619 of 21410
Quote:
Originally Posted by haste View Post

Anyone here watched Hatfields & McCoys? It looks absolutely amazing for a short mini-series.
I haven't watched it yet on Blu-ray but did catch it when it aired this summer on the History channel. Great mini-series with a very strong performance by Kevin Costner.
post #19620 of 21410
Quote:
Originally Posted by haste View Post

Anyone here watched Hatfields & McCoys? It looks absolutely amazing for a short mini-series.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Phantom Stranger View Post

I haven't watched it yet on Blu-ray but did catch it when it aired this summer on the History channel. Great mini-series with a very strong performance by Kevin Costner.

I too saw the mini-series on the History Channel. I was very impressed with the details but the muted colors left it looking quite drab. Still, if the Blu-ray version shows off the details and depth, it should be demo material.

I also was impressed with Costner's performance and Bill Paxton's wasn't too shabby either.
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