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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
nice reviews on the site. HOLLOW MAN and THE PATRIOT.


i want to check THE PATRIOT bitrate and disc space used once I got mine too as Dan seems to have had a tough job distinguish any differences between the two versions ( video speaking, 'cause the dts is a measurable + ). might get a surprise :D


I agree THE PATRIOT is an underated movie and more than worth to see ( it 's good enough to own imho ).
 

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I agree David. I think I might pick up The Patroit just for some of those cannon scenes. I need to let my new sub get a workout. But Hollow Man? I really don't even see myself looking to buy that one. Unless it is $10 or free with The Patroit, I probably won't buy that Superbit Deluxe.


Personally I would like to know when they are going to release movies like Spiderman, Panic Room, Memento, should I go on? They have so many very decent Columbia movies and they almost seem to refuse to release those great movies in Superbit form. I wonder why?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
hey :)


their policy seems triple:


standard release

super duper release ( and not always with DTS ! )

superbit


you HAVE to buy 3 times the disc ! :)


this is insane.


even Gaumont in France who distributes Columbia has decided to depart from this policy and for instance will release BLACK HAWK DOWN only in super duper edition in October....


their superbit policy does NOT justity this current policy of several editions imho !


they should hit HARD the market with super duper DTS editions upon the first release of their new movies, like Dreamworls, Universal (often), FOX etc
 

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I read with interest The DVD File review of this film and noted the apparent lack of discernable differences in the video image, and in particular the perception fine detail and resolution. I also noticed that the playback system consisted of the older Sony S7000 and/or Panny RV30 with a Faroudja LD-100 Line Doubler. While the this combination is certainly reasonable for the typical release, it is important to point out that it would be incapable of capturing the fine high frequency details that a superbit DVD is capable of, due to the inherent high frequency roll off characteristics with these players as verified on the 6.75 MHz AVIA resolution test. Indeed, with this setup I am surprised that Dan has been able to detect resolution differences with the other Superbit releases. Irrespective of how good a HDTV display is, if a setup is incapable of approaching the full DVD video bandwidth, the subtle differences a Superbit or other high bandwidth release is capable of will be extremely difficult to detect.


Nick
 

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I watched some of the FIFTH ELEMENT Superbit on a calibrated 65" marantz 16X9 today. Wow. Very impressive. Not HD, mind you, but exceptional for DVD.


Too bad I hate hate HATE the movie.
 

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I watched the new Superbit edition of The Patriot last night and I was most impressed with the transfer. I no longer have the original release to compare to, but I recall seeing some compression problems (not serious) that are not present in the new disc. Indeed, I could not find fault with any aspect of this transfer. Really quite beautiful.
 

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I just got both of these new SB titles, Patriot and Hollow Man. The differences on BOTH are exactly as expected. More detail, finer horizontal ringing/EE (higher freq).


So i don't know why Dan hasn't found any noticable difference detail-wise on Patriot, because on all others he did. Will ask him.


As Obi said, the older Patriot release had several scenes with quite some heavy compression artefacts. I haven't watched the whole SB version yet, but in the one scene that i remembered blocking artefacts, i checked the SB version and its much better.


Will try to put up a review of the Patriot, Hollow and Vertical Limit SBs. Wonderful all 3 discs (the PQ, movies obviously a matter of taste).



Nick,


1) Dan Ramer is a friend of mine and is one of the very few reviewers on the major DVD sites that i consider to be a videophile at heart and who's opinion i trust and agree with in the vast majority of cases.


2) My equipment might very well be even more revealing than his, and he probably has a bit more hardware ringing and high-freq roll-off than me and some others here. But he has what most reviewers lack, a keen eye. And no, i am not surprised he has seen the difference on his setup, since i can even see and apprciate it on a regular TV.


3) But display equipment isn't even the issue, since he also provided a screenshot comparison like he usually does (as i do) to show the differences. And screenshots simply show what is on he disc, without any roll-off, so your opinion on the quality of his setup doesn't really apply here.


And indeed, while the difference in the Hollow Man shot he provided shows the typical difference for a SB title, the Patriot one does not.


BUT, as i said, this has to be the rare case where i disagree with Dan, or something is amiss, since i also did a screenshot comparison on several scenes in Patriot and the difference IS the same as on every other SB title.


When i did the screenshots, i noticed that there are a couple of scenes that are quite soft in general, which seems to be a cinematographic issue. While a lot of other shots are incredibly detailed.


My only guess currently is, that Dan hit only some of those 'soft' scenes when he did his screenshots. Rather unlikely, but i have no idea what else could be at fault.


Will report whether we can clear up the issue.


Regards

Bjoern
 

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Thanks, Bjoern, for the kind words and for springing to my defense.


Bjoern may be right about an inopportune selection of screencaps to compare the original and the Superbit releases of The Patriot. With the exception of the printed text that appears in my review and which did not show as much of an improvement as I found on other Superbit DVDs, all the rest of my screencaps were of Mel Gibson’s face in close-up. I captured five from each disc, and there were such small differences, I doubted that anyone would see them. My intent was to make a comparison similar to the one I made when I reviewed Air Force One and demonstrated a clear improvement in the detail in Gary Oldman’s close-up. I find that the complex textures of the human face are a convenient and easily perceived means of comparison. It didn’t occur to me that The Patriot’s cinematographer might have slightly softened Gibson’s close-ups; I would have thought that such practices might be common for more insecure performers. If he had, it’s possible that my comments were affected by screencaps that could not demonstrate the kind of improvements I previously found. I guess I should limit my screencaps to images that contain narrow, vertical-striped patterns as Bjoern did and as I did in my Hollow Man review. An improved contrast ratio in such patterns is a direct reflection of a disc’s wider video frequency response.


As for the quality of the video found in my home theater, I can clearly discern the differences in resolution between HDTV’s 1080i30 and 720p60 formats despite the fact that my NEC data-grade front projector is equipped with only seven-inch tubes. My theater is as dark as the interior of a coffin, which allowed me to set contrast and brightness conservatively when I calibrated my projector. This has the fortuitous effect of avoiding a resolution-robbing spot size swelling. I never use the Panasonic DVD-RV30 player for image assessment; for that, I continue to use my trusty old Sony DVP-S7000. The Panasonic is reserved for Dolby Digital versus DTS comparisons. I continue to use the 7000 because I have yet to find a DVD player that produces a better looking picture while having both less ringing and the absence of the MPEG chroma bug; I’ve assessed six candidates in my theater with little success. When I do find one, I’ll be glad to trade up.


The ancient Faroudja remains a very capable instrument. There is no apparent video ringing onscreen for DVDs in which unwelcome halos are absent (for example, Thir13en Ghosts and The Pledge). Examining resolution wedges on the AVIA DVD reveals that I am indeed perceptively resolving the limit of DVD.


Please note that I did not say that there weren’t improvements in the Superbit release of The Patriot. I even said that I prefer it. I simply commented that this is the first Superbit release for which, “I cannot detect a worthwhile improvement.†In other words, I found that the video improvements within Superbit releases such as Air Force One, The Fifth Element, and Hollow Man to be more dramatic, less subtle. And those owners of the original Patriot release might find that the investment is not worthwhile.


Regular DVDfile readers know that I wrote a defense of Superbit in counterpoint to our editor’s commentary that questioned its validity. So I’m clearly an advocate. I simply did not find this particular Superbit DVD to be as compelling as others when compared to the original release.


Dan
 

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Quote:
Originally posted by Matt_Stevens
I watched some of the FIFTH ELEMENT Superbit on a calibrated 65" marantz 16X9 today. Wow. Very impressive. Not HD, mind you, but exceptional for DVD.


Too bad I hate hate HATE the movie.
Matt,


You also saw it on my NEC XG110LC on a 92" screen. Or have you forgotten already? ;)


--Jerome
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
hi Dan


sorry if I might have sounded a bit familiar at the beginning of the thread, it was friendly :D . I truely admire Dvdfile site, always impatient to read what you guys write in your reviews. Great site !!


I remember THE PATRIOT shot in super 35mm in the theater and always found out that it looked much too grainy at times. That grain is still visible on the initial dvd release but far less problematic than the argentic copy.


Btw, any insight at to what titles Columbia has in its superbit sleeve ? :)


SILVERADO would be great.


David
 

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Dan, clearly you have been able to detect certain differences in the past between the Superbit and standard versions of Sony releases, its just that I have some trouble understanding how your Sony S7000 player can detect such fine high frequency detail. Perhaps Bjoern and you can enlighten me on what I might be missing here. I have also had this player since 1997 and am very familiar with it as well. While I agree that the absence of ringing is a very desirable feature, the lack of ultimate resolution as determined, with for example the AVIA resolution test, the 6.75 MHz panel in the tested system was blurred and the lines were barely visible when checking the Sony DVP-7000S-Faroudja DVP3000 combination in a high end projection setup. This is similar to the situation with the Denon DVD-2800, a player known to lack high frequency detail. In contrast, when using a S9000, the higher resolution is clearly evident (at the expense of more noticeable ringing on a large display) as is the case with the ubiquitous Panasonic RP-91. What I am saying is that the Superbit releases have added high frequency energy in the > 5-6 MHz range which the S7000 should not be able to detect, because these frequencies are significantly rolled off in this player (unless your 7000 has been modified).

Nick
 

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Nick,


nothing wrong with what you say. The added detail of the SB releases is indeed exactly in the region where the frequency response of some players already drops significantly. And the correlation between seeing a non-blurred version of the 6.75Mhz Avia pattern and the appreciation of the SB benefits is very valid.


I haven't seen the 7000 for a long time, so i hesitate to comment on its flatness of the frequency response. The one thing i do remember is that, as has been mentioned, it has a wonderful smooth, ringing-free picture.


That being said, the reason a Sony7000 and Faroudja DVP3000 combination rolls of the highs might also be the cause of the DVP3000, because earlier incarnations of that model where known to cut off high-freq. detail.


So the questions would be, have the other players you mentioned (Denon2800, S9000, RP91) been processed by exactly the same DVP3000 and used in interlaced mode? Since all these units are progressive players, could it be that you checked them directly? That could mean that the DVP7000 wasn't the culprit.


I am not sure, just wondering.


If the DVP7000 is indeed rolled off considerably, then all the more power to Dan, since he already appreciates the difference of the SB titles on that player and would probably enjoy them even more on another. Although i agree with Dan, that it is incredibly difficult to find an interlace player that doesn't roll off, has a smooth ringing-free picture AND doesn't have the chroma bug.


Regards

Bjoern
 

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David, please be as familiar as you’d like. One of the pleasures of writing for DVDfile is all the great e-mails and forum exchanges I’ve enjoyed over the last three and a half years. (I’ve even enjoyed some of the flames.) As for future Superbit releases, I’m afraid I don’t have any special insight into what may be coming.


Nick, I agree that a player offering a flatter extended response will indeed display more fine-grained detail, but the DVP-S7000 does not have a brickwall video filter at its output. The Sony 7000 is only 1.46 dB down at 5.0 MHz, and the slope is quite shallow. So any additional spatial bandwidth in the five to six megahertz range will be visible on a relative basis when comparing a conventional DVD with its Superbit counterpart.


As I mentioned, I’m looking forward to buying a suitable player with extended response just as soon as it’s available. But the absence of edge halos and ringing are terribly important to me; I believe that halos remain the single greatest impediment to a film-like presentation. (I wish everyone - particularly my fellow reviewers - would make more of a fuss about them when found on a DVD. Home theater enthusiasts should send letters and e-mails; complain to the studios. There are interested parties out there. I’m currently in a dialog with THX concerning the shameful state of halos on Phantom Menace and what might be done to avoid them in future releases. People will listen. It remains to be seen if they’ll act.) So that’s why I can’t consider watching DVDs with a player that contributes to a problem that is, unfortunately, so prevalent on most discs. (The player-specific MPG chroma bug is second on my gripe list.)


Watching DVDs on my 8-foot by 4.5-foot screen with a 42-degree field-of-view is very revealing, so my first priority is to simulate film as closely as possible. Having routinely experienced 1080i30, it’s almost painful when I return to DVD’s resolution. When I do, I’d rather watch an ever-so-slightly soft image devoid of halos and color striping than an apparently sharp but contaminated image. But please rest assured that the differences between conventional DVDs and Superbit releases are readily apparent on my system.


Dan
 

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Bjoern,


I'm not emotionally invested in interlaced players. I'd be willing to pick up any progressive player as long as the performance exceeds the Sony / Faroudja results I now achieve and provides a smooth ringing-free picture without the chroma bug.


Most of the six players I evaluated were, in fact, progressive. I've even done an extensive evaluation of a home theater PC.


Any suggestions?


Dan
 

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Bjoern, a friend of mine owns the Faroudja which he obtained some 6 months ago (new) so I don't know if it might be causing these problems. I do know that the S7000 does roll off high frequencies quite noticeably (when combined with a DVDo or other line doubler). For corroboration of video frequency characteristics also check out the earlier Secrets evaluation of this player. It was one of the early tradeoffs in their design. In that sense it is quite similar to the Denon 2800, but without the chroma bug. But my simplistic question to you is this: if in fact a DVD player rolls off top end bandwidth where the primary merits of the Superbit or other similar releases (eg. Criterion's The Rock) are to be found, how can you realistically expect one to detect the more subtle differences in horizontal resolution which are the hallmark of these "less filtered" releases. The added benefits of better color balance, contrast, etc. might often be initially perceived as "enhanced detail" when in fact it has nothing to do with ultimate resolution.
 

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Originally posted by Dan Ramer

Nick, I agree that a player offering a flatter extended response will indeed display more fine-grained detail, but the DVP-S7000 does not have a brickwall video filter at its output. The Sony 7000 is only 1.46 dB down at 5.0 MHz, and the slope is quite shallow. So any additional spatial bandwidth in the five to six megahertz range will be visible on a relative basis when comparing a conventional DVD with its Superbit counterpart.



The 7000 I believe doesn't go much beyond 5.5 MHz with virtually nothing past 6 MHz. Please correct me if I am wrong but Superbits I believe do reach the limits of DVD resolution. If in fact the majority of the differences between a Superbit and standard release are in this 5.5 MHz to 6.5 MHz band than such players as a S7000, Denon 2800, Panasonic 1000, etc. would become a limiting factor. Dan, as Bjoern says you indeed must have a terrific set of eyes to detect the subtle differences your setup is capable of. Personally I have been hardpressed to see any real differences between a Superbit and standard release when viewing the S7000, Denon 2800, Panasonic H1000 (both in progressive). I have, on the other hand seen very obvious differences when using the Panasonic RP91 and the Sony 9000 (with some added ringing) on both large (projection) and small (HDTV compatible direct view) displays .
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Hi guys


Dan, ok, cool ! :) and this forum is truely great, surprised every day.


I will check among my HC magazines and see what dB drop they measured in the high frequencies and report back.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
:)


let's start witht the KRELL DVD STANDARD, progressive player :D ( 14,500 euros :D :D )


in progressive scan, PRESTIGE VIDEO measured a -5dB at 12MHZ, -1.5dB at 10MHZ, -0.6dB at 9.5MHZ
 

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Hollow Man does indeed have the usual SB improvment in PQ. Check this capture of the US Capitol (as noted at DVDfile) of the SE version...notice the resolution of the top of the dome and the vertical pillars...and then compare to the next post with the SB version: much improved.
 
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