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Avengers: Endgame Ultra HD Blu-ray Review



After the devastating events of Avengers: Infinity War, the universe is in ruins. With the help of remaining allies, the Avengers assemble once more in order to reverse Thanos' actions and restore balance to the universe. Ralph Potts reviews the Ultra HD Blu-ray release of Avengers: Endgame from Disney Home Entertainment.



The Review at a Glance:
(max score: 5 )

Film:

Extras:

Audio/UHD Video total rating:
( Max score: 100 )

92



Details:

Studio and Year: Disney - 2019
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feature running time: 181 minutes
Genre: Fantasy

Disc Format: BD-66
Encoding: HEVC
Video Aspect: 2.39:1
Resolution: 2160p/24

Audio Format(s): English Dolby Atmos/TrueHD 7.1, English/Spanish Dolby Digital Plus 7.1, 1080p Blu-ray: DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio, Spanish/French Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, French
Starring: Robert Downey Jr., Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth, Chris Evans, Paul Rudd, Don Cheadle, Chris Pratt, Zoe Saldana, Karen Gillan, Elizabeth Olsen, Scarlett Johansson, Tom Holland, Benedict Cumberbatch, Jeremy Renner, Danai Gurira, Bradley Cooper, Brie Larson, Rene Russo, Gwyneth Paltrow, Josh Brolin
Directed by: Anthony and Joe Russo
Music by: Alan Silvestri
Written by: Christopher Markus, Stephen McFeely
Region Code: A,B,C

Release Date: August 13, 2019


"Nothing Can Prepare You for the End"


Synopsis:

“The fourth installment of the Avengers series is the once-in-a-lifetime culmination of 22 interconnected films and the climax of a journey.” – Disney Home Entertainment


My Take:

Adrift in space with no food or water, Tony Stark sends a message to Pepper Potts as his oxygen supply starts to dwindle. Meanwhile, the remaining Avengers -- Thor, Black Widow, Captain America and Bruce Banner -- must figure out a way to bring back their vanquished allies for an epic showdown with Thanos -- the evil demigod who decimated the planet and the universe. With the help of elements from the past, thanks to the return of Scott Lang from the Quantum Realm, The Avengers are ready to stand together in the hopes of restoring balance and defeating the universes largest threat.

I have reviewed each of the Marvel Studios Blu-ray releases connected to the characters/events depicted in Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame and, wanted to incorporate some of my comments from those reviews.

I used to love reading comics and seeing some of my favorite figures from their pages brought to life on the big screen has been well executed and pretty thrilling. I dabbled a little bit in DC comics but my heart belonged to Marvel. Spiderman was my first Marvel favorite, followed by Thor and then I picked up an Iron man comic. There was always something about Iron man that I found intriguing. I can’t say for certain whether it was Tony Stark’s money/fame/brilliance or Iron man’s vulnerable side that showed that underneath the armor was a man who was fallible but couldn’t show it. I guess it might have been the idea that potentially anyone could be Iron man once they donned the armor. For me I always thought that his armor was just so freakin’ cool.

Captain America isn’t among the more dazzling superheroes however he has been a Marvel staple that has continued to thrive. I was familiar with his origins, powers etc. and appreciated the attention to detail that went into developing the character for the purposes leading up to his connection with The Avengers. My connection with Thor started from reading about his exploits with The Avengers and then sporadically catching issue of his own comic. He remained a personal favorite though and I was anxious to see how he would translate to the big screen. I enjoyed the first Thor film and the integration of the elements that would carry over into The Avengers.

For fans the handwriting was on the wall as the various Marvel Universe film installments introduced narrative threads that would segue into the release of The Avengers film series. I had high hopes for the first Avengers film and needless to say I wasn't disappointed in it or its sequel. Along the way we have releases from the MCU that have introduced a host of characters leading into Avengers: Infinity War which set the stage for the finale Avengers: Endgame.

As the final chapter in a ten-year journey, expectations for Endgame were extremely high among fans. The various events both large and small that served as stepping stones along the way would need to be fleshed out in a cohesive and scalable story that would be required to carry not only a gratifying finish but, an emotional as well. “Earth’s heroes will finally understand how fragile our reality is and, the sacrifices that must be made to uphold it, in a story of friendship, teamwork and, setting differences aside to overcome the impossible.”

As with its predecessor I went to see Avengers: Endgame when it hit theaters earlier this year. There was much talk about the film’s bloated runtime but, I was all in. This is a film that covers a lot of ground, stitching together multiple plot points in furtherance of culminating its epic conclusion. I walked away from it feeling wholly gratified, a bit emotionally drained and appreciative of the effort that went into balancing and executing an overtly monumental undertaking.

Written by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, and directed by The Russo Brothers Avengers: Endgame turned out to be exactly what I’d hoped for. No, it’s not a cinematic gem that all audiences will revel in but, it lives up to the promise of what we have come to expect from fantasy films that brought some of our favorite characters from the pages of comics to the live-action big screen stage. The production elements are everything you would expect from a big budget film and compliment the proceedings. The returning members of the cast reprise their roles naturally with each providing an enriching element to the film. I was every bit as engaged by Avengers: Endgame this time and, found that I was affected by and, enjoyed it, even more. Avengers: Endgame was a long time coming. For me, I found that the journey was a fruitful one.


Replay Value:


Parental Guide:

The rating is for sequences of sci-fi violence and action, and some language.


AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100/EXCELLENT = 83-91/GOOD = 74-82/AVERAGE = 65-73/BELOW AVERAGE = under 65

**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**


UHD Presentation: 88
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)


  • HDR: Dark Highlights:
  • HDR: Bright Highlights:
  • HDR: Expanded Color:
  • Resolution:
  • Visual Impact:



Dolby Atmos Rating: 96
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)


  • Level of immersion:
  • Soundstage integration:
  • Audio object placement:
  • Effectiveness of Atmos platform:
  • Entertainment factor:



Avengers: Endgame comes to Ultra HD Blu-ray from Disney Home Entertainment featuring 2160pHEVC encoded video and lossless Dolby Atmos/TrueHD 7.1 channel sound.

For its presentation in Ultra HD Avengers: Endgame was rendered from a 6.5K source and finished on a 2K DI.

Avengers: Endgame is a fantasy/action-based film that was shot with a specific visual aesthetic in mind and that comes through in this presentation. The Ultra HD presentation bests the 1080p version in every respect. This isn’t an overtly colorful film, especially during the scenes that take place in the present, where primary and secondary colors are tamped down. My initial impressions were that there was a flatness to the image that I didn’t necessarily recall when seeing it in the theater. Once things begin shifting to the various time travel sequences the image becomes noticeably warmer with well-chosen moments where sepia tones and rich chromatic variants are used for thematic emphasis. Over the course of the film the presentation’s earth toned and primary colors benefited from UHD's wider color gamut but, not to a defining degree.

The added dimension in blacks, and shadows during the low-level scenes, such as those that take place in the crippled space ship carrying Tony and Nebula, the rubble beneath The Avengers destroyed base, or the planet that serves as the home of the Soul Stone is immediately noticeable. The cinematography makes use of shadows, streaming light and a mix of light/dark elements. The blend of shadow detail/depth of field offset by the presence of light at varying levels looked great.

The film has a variety of sequences that make use of close up camera angles that show off its ability to render detail. In general, I found the image to be sharp but, conversely, there were times when close ups were lacking in truly defining delineation. The same was true of wide-angle shots. There were instances where images onscreen looked terrific, the ones that take on Asgard are a good example. I found that some of the sequences early in the film, such as when the team travels to the far planet to confront Thanos in the “Garden”, appeared somewhat softer by comparison.

There is intermittent use of visual elements that utilize high dynamic range. There isn’t much happening in this regard in the early parts of the story but, once things kick off, especially during the last hour, there is gratifying use of HDR where bright/fiery elements looked appreciably vibrant, with low-level sequences having excellent depth of field and emboldened contrast.

Avengers: Endgame’s visual style made evaluating its performance across the board difficult. As I gave it more thought I came to realize that its presentation in the theater was similar. Be that as it may, there is an unevenness to the presentation that discerning viewers will question. With a three-hour runtime and Dolby Atmos soundtrack perhaps a BD-100 disc would have given the video more breathing room.

At the end of the day I enjoyed the Ultra HD presentation finding that its pluses outweighed my minor complaints. There is no question that it shines brighter than its 1080p counterpart but, it falls shy of the best Ultra HD presentations available on the format.


Dolby Atmos:

In listening to the Dolby Atmos surround mix I found it to be of the active variety, which was welcomed. Its use of audio objects placed above is comprised of a mix of atmospherics, panning fills and discrete sounds. This is done to good effect when implemented and creates an enriching level of immersion that coincides with the onscreen events nicely. Nearfield sound placement is noteworthy, providing an involving listening experience that emboldens the "being there" effect when applied.

During the various sequences where the teams time jump and contend with elements from the past, such as in New York in 2012, or deep space in 2014, the track features environmental cues and discrete sound effects that extend the soundstage. Everything comes together in the large set piece in the finale, where the Avengers square off against Thanos and his army. There are a host of explosions, nearfield pans, and weapon fire that rotate around the soundstage, shifting overhead, passing by at ear level and coming directly at the listening position. It all makes for a resplendent blend of room traversing, and well-balanced sound. I had a great time with this superb audio mix.

NOTE: I did find that a minor increase in volume, approximately 4db, was required to derive the most from it. Once there, it kicked nicely with no signs of dynamic compression or anemic bass. Speaking of which, I ran direct comparisons to several sequences between the Atmos track and DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio track and found that the Atmos track hit harder and deeper.


For those not familiar with the details regarding Ultra HD Blu-ray you can refer to my article that includes some pertinent data on the subject. Here is the link:

Ultra HD Blu-ray Has Come to AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews

Blu-ray Video:


Video: 92
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)


  • Resolution/Clarity:
  • Black Level/Shadow Detail:
  • Color Reproduction:
  • Fleshtones:
  • Compression:



Audio: 96
(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

  • Dynamics:
  • Low frequency effects:
  • Surround Sound presentation:
  • Clarity/Detail:
  • Dialog Reproduction:
  • DSU/DTS Neural:X Rating * (non-rated element): NA


Avengers: End game comes to Blu-ray Disc from Disney Home Entertainment featuring 1080p AVC encoded video and lossless DTS-HD 7.1 Master Audio sound.

This film essentially utilizes two distinct visual styles to convey its thematic content. One makes use of darker/monochromatic color schemes, while the other features richer contrast and vibrant colors emboldened by warm accents. Each provides the look that the filmmakers strove for to drive the narrative components. Close ups reveal crisp definition and perceptible detail that reveals the presence of fine detail, including the minutia visible in the costumes and make-up worn by the members of the cast. The texture on the surfaces of objects is just as defining which give them visibly apparent structure and lifelike quality. Black levels are slightly elevated, leaving only the darkest scenes lacking in dimension and, contrast is spot on which delivers bright punchy whites and appreciable depth of field when mixed light/dark elements are present onscreen. The video has a noticeably clean and pristine quality that appears devoid of video related anomalies and artifacts.

I had high hopes for this soundtrack on Blu-ray, especially given the disappointing tracks on some of the recent home video release from Disney. I am happy to report that this 7.1 channel DTS-HD Master Audio/Dolby TrueHD (Atmos core) presentation didn’t disappoint, and essentially matched what I heard in the theater. This lossless soundtrack is dynamically supported which accents the active nature of the sound design. Dialog has excellent presence with clear, defining vocal character and noteworthy room penetration. The mix makes involving use of the surround channels as multi-layered sound effects are appropriately placed within the soundfield so that they coincide with the events transpiring onscreen.

The surround mix utilizes the subwoofer to accentuate the action-based sequences which feature a palpable and occasionally room shaking low end. Throughout the presentation the quality of the bass is excellent, as it fills the room with clean, resonating, low frequency detail.

* Note: As with other recent Disney releases on Blu-ray I found that I needed to set playback at volumes above where I normally listen. In this case I found it to be less of an increase, only requiring a 4db boost. Once there, it played back as expected with no signs of unwanted dynamic compression, allowing me to become immersed in the film without distraction. Let’s hope this trend continues.



Bonus Features:
  • Disc 1: Avengers: Endgame Ultra HD Blu-ray
  • Disc 2: Avengers: Endgame Blu-ray
  • Disc 3: Bonus Disc (Blu-ray)
    • Remembering Stan Lee – Filmmakers and cast honor the great Stan Lee in a fond look back at his MCU movie cameos.
    • Setting The Tone: Casting Robert Downey Jr. – Hear the tale of how Robert Downey Jr. was cast as Tony Stark in the original “Iron Man” — and launched the MCU.
    • A Man Out of Time: Creating Captain America – Trace the evolution of Captain America with those who helped shape the look, feel and character of this compelling hero.
    • Black Widow: Whatever It Takes – Follow Black Widow's journey both within and outside the Avengers, including the challenges she faced and overcame along the way.
    • The Russo Brothers: Journey to Endgame – See how Anthony and Joe Russo met the challenge of helming two of the biggest films in cinematic history ... back-to-back!
    • The Women of the MCU – MCU women share what it was like to join forces for the first time in an epic battle scene — and be part of such a historic ensemble.
    • Bro Thor – His appearance has changed but his heroism remains! Go behind the scenes to see how Bro Thor was created.
    • Six Deleted Scenes – “Goji Berries,” “Bombs on Board,” “Suckiest Army in the Galaxy,” “You Used to Frickin’ Live Here,” “Tony and Howard” and “Avengers Take a Knee.”
    • Gag Reel – Laugh along with the cast in this epic collection of flubs, goofs and gaffes from set.
    • Visionary Intro - Intro by directors Joe and Anthony Russo.
    • Audio Commentary - Audio commentary by directors Anthony and Joe Russo, and writers Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely.
  • Digital Code



Final Thoughts:

Avengers: Endgame is a thrilling and engaging film experience that successfully brings the current Avengers film series to its epic conclusion. It comes to Blu-ray in this Cinematic Universe Edition from Disney featuring solid Ultra HD video, excellent lossless surround sound, including a complimentary Dolby Atmos immersive listening experience and a fair supplemental package that is worth exploring. Avengers: Endgame is an entertaining film that fulfills the legacy of the best Marvel Cinematic Universe films that preceded it. It comes highly recommended.














Ralph Potts
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews


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post #2 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 11:53 AM
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Thanks for the review! Looking forward to receiving my pre-order and watching it in my home theater with my wife and family (who have not seen the movie yet).
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post #3 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 11:54 AM
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Haven't seen the movie yet. Waiting on the uhd release. Disappointing that the PQ isn't as great as hoped.
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post #4 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 12:24 PM
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Looking forward to seeing this one. I will need (I assume) to re-watch the previous few to refresh my memory prior to watching this one.
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post #5 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 12:27 PM
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Thanks @Ralph Potts for the honest review. Like your projector! Will still look forward to watching this at home.
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post #6 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 12:33 PM
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If i recall correctly, Endgame was shot entirely with IMAX cameras. Knowing that, why would Disney shortchange the home video release and us this way? Why spend all that money shooting in IMAX and then deliver a less than top quality product? Disney continues to just disappoint on their discs.
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post #7 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 12:47 PM
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Definitely enjoyed the movie in theater, but please if your movie is going to be over 2.5 hours add an intermission (AKA pee break) for us older guys and gals.

Also my Steelcase has been on order since the day I saw it in theater.
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post #8 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 01:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NoUDont View Post
Knowing that, why would Disney shortchange the home video release and us this way?
How does "Because they really don't care about people who buy shinny discs for home viewing" sound? - and clearly they don't.
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post #9 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 01:08 PM
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The 3D on the latest batch of Marvel movies has been quite good. Unfortunately there is not a lot of choice for UHD & 3D Blu-ray combos. The Japan combo will work in North America (Region A). I'm ordering a Region Free 3D + 2D Blu-ray from amazon.co.uk.

AVS Forum Avengers: Endgame 3D Thread
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post #10 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 01:17 PM
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Originally Posted by audioguy View Post
Looking forward to seeing this one. I will need (I assume) to re-watch the previous few to refresh my memory prior to watching this one.
well...seeing as this is part 2...youd only need to watch the previous one...
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post #11 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 01:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NoUDont View Post
If i recall correctly, Endgame was shot entirely with IMAX cameras. Knowing that, why would Disney shortchange the home video release and us this way? Why spend all that money shooting in IMAX and then deliver a less than top quality product? Disney continues to just disappoint on their discs.
I assume you bought Infinity War also?
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post #12 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 01:42 PM
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Nice review as always but why no HDR info. Lots of info on the audio formats but is there Dolby Vision for example? Maybe I missed it but did a text search.
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post #13 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 02:29 PM
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I assume you bought Infinity War also?
Yep. Off eBay for about $8. And that’s what I’d pay for endgame. Ur point?
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post #14 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 02:54 PM
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Yep. Off eBay for about $8. And that’s what I’d pay for endgame. Ur point?
then im sure you know that Infinity War also shot entirely in IMAX AR...so why are you surprised with EndGame?
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post #15 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 03:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Tanquen View Post
Nice review as always but why no HDR info. Lots of info on the audio formats but is there Dolby Vision for example? Maybe I missed it but did a text search.
Unless anything has changed, Disney reserves Dolby Vision for their online streams only.
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post #16 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 04:02 PM
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I'm going to remain skeptical on the audio rating. Infinity War is massively disappointing in my book (in the audio department, I mean) and I saw Endgame in a Dolby cinema and it had about the weakest sound mix of any movie I've seen there (if your seat doesn't shake, you know the low-end is lacking). And looking at the Ultimate list of bass thread, this one looks pretty much identical to Infinity War in the bass department.... boooooo
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post #17 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 05:04 PM
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Just bought this on amazon 4k. I am turning into something i never said i would, a movie streamer. I have always loved the disc format but now with streaming quality being the same or nearly, i see no reason to stay with discs. Plus getting the movies a few weeks in advance and cheaper is helping too
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post #18 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 05:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RonAlam View Post
then im sure you know that Infinity War also shot entirely in IMAX AR...so why are you surprised with EndGame?
Not so much surprised, but definitely disappointed that with everything at Disney’s disposal to put out something great, they choose not to. U should be too.
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post #19 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 05:54 PM
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This has been a long wait, and it's taken a huge amount of patients not to see it in the crumby theatres in my area, but it's just around the corner; and just in time for my Dad's 81st birthday.
An orange cake is in order for this one.
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post #20 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 06:39 PM
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Glad to see a high Atmos score even if I have to turn it up more, a little puzzled that it doesn't wow in the video department as much, and as expected, upset they didn't include the Imax ratio. I'll buy it to complete the set, but not nearly as hyped over getting this as I'd like to be. SO many better MCU movies out there, IMO, and as far as this saga goes I preferred the first one (Infinity War) better.

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post #21 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 06:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RonAlam View Post
well...seeing as this is part 2...youd only need to watch the previous one...
Pretty much every film in the franchise has some callback elements, but you're right that IW is clearly an important one to watch beforehand.

Peg me for trying to get the 3D version overseas, even though it literally pays no dividends for about 85% of the film lol.

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post #22 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 07:48 PM
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Originally Posted by NoUDont View Post
If i recall correctly, Endgame was shot entirely with IMAX cameras. Knowing that, why would Disney shortchange the home video release and us this way? Why spend all that money shooting in IMAX and then deliver a less than top quality product? Disney continues to just disappoint on their discs.
The answer is easy: because Disney knows people will buy their stuff anyway. That's why they rarely do Dolby Vision. That's why they ALWAYS do gimped Dolby Atmos. Anyone on this board would only put forth 1% effort in products we make if we know FOR CERTAIN that people will buy our stuff regardless.

As for the review, I'm a bit surprised at the UHD picture review score. I cannot recall a major release that got below a 90 from Ralph (I post this with due respect and affection) and if he deigns to go below a 90, the disk must have underwhelming PQ indeed.
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post #23 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 08:10 PM
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This is very disappointing to see a low score on PQ. Looks like the PQ between streaming and disc are the same base on early reviews I've seen about streaming.
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post #24 of 168 Old 07-31-2019, 11:22 PM
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I'm concerned all around. Most of us know what to expect at this point. In my experience, Infinity War looked the sharpest on Vudu over the 4K disc with Dolby Vision. But I really wish this could be the definitive version of the movie. AV can't be worse than Black Panther and Captain Marvel though.

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post #25 of 168 Old 08-01-2019, 01:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NoUDont View Post
If i recall correctly, Endgame was shot entirely with IMAX cameras. Knowing that, why would Disney shortchange the home video release and us this way? Why spend all that money shooting in IMAX and then deliver a less than top quality product? Disney continues to just disappoint on their discs.
no no no. Its so wrong to claim "IMAX cameras". It was not filmed with the legendary IMAX MSM9802 15/70mm analog film camera (the one used by Christopher Nolan) it was filmed with an Arri/IMAX collaborated 6.5K digital camera. 6.5K = roughly 25 million pixels, while the IMAX 15/70mm film is equal to bout 225 million pixels. It has 10 times the resolution. So Avengers was merely filmed on a re-branded (but really good) Arri Digital camera.
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post #26 of 168 Old 08-01-2019, 01:56 AM
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UHD Presentation: 88 ? Well that's disappointing. I was starting to believe you gave everything 90+ !

What's even more disappointing is the fact that this movie is filmed in 6.5K (≈ 25mp) yet for some reason it is derived from a 2K DI (≈ 2mp)

That's a 90% reduction/compression... When well Disney start giving us proper 4K DIs ???

In any case, Infinity War was filmed on the same 6.5K Arri/'IMAX' camera and its 2K DI looked phenomenal in 4K/HDR. Absolutely huge disparity between the 1080p/SDR and 4K/HDR versions in my opinion.
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post #27 of 168 Old 08-01-2019, 03:13 AM
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Thanks for review Ralph. Will be picking this up for sure

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post #28 of 168 Old 08-01-2019, 04:17 AM
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Originally Posted by audioguy View Post
Looking forward to seeing this one. I will need (I assume) to re-watch the previous few to refresh my memory prior to watching this one.


Naw, only need to watch Infinity War (but if you don’t remember the events from the first Avengers movie, it would help to watch for context).


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post #29 of 168 Old 08-01-2019, 04:19 AM
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So amped for this. Saw it in theaters and loved it—can’t wait to experience it at home. Thanks for the heads up on the PQ Ralph! Now, I won’t need to check my Lumagen or Projector for malfunctions when I notice the variance in PQ when watching this movie.


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post #30 of 168 Old 08-01-2019, 04:20 AM
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I caved and bought the digital copy early, and I was extremely happy with the audio/video presentation. It was one of the best audio presentations from a stream that I can remember (right up there with Ready Player One). The LFE was excellent, and it didn't feel compressed. If streaming audio was always this good, I would have no problem converting to all digital. I had to bump the stream by 8db, which is typical for streams.
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