Blu-Rays worth buying

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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Thu Feb 04, 2010 3:55 pm

Vrock wrote:There's nothing wrong with VC1, provided its at high enough bitrates...VC1 is a common codec, so that means there's a large number of Blu-rays that use this. That probably explains why so many of those movies that you think look bad are VC1.


The key is in the first quoted sentence I think. The VC1 encoded movies are (almost) always way lower bitrate compared to the AVC ones.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Thu Feb 04, 2010 4:08 pm

TravelMug wrote:
Vrock wrote:There's nothing wrong with VC1, provided its at high enough bitrates...VC1 is a common codec, so that means there's a large number of Blu-rays that use this. That probably explains why so many of those movies that you think look bad are VC1.


The key is in the first quoted sentence I think. The VC1 encoded movies are (almost) always way lower bitrate compared to the AVC ones.
You can't compare bit rates like that across different codecs. Some codecs can deliver good quality at low bitrates, and others require more breathing room. Again, I seriously doubt you could tell the difference in a side by side comparison of the handful of films out there that are available in both codecs.

That's not to say there aren't some crummy VC1 transfers out there, but again I don't believe it to be the fault of the codec. Some of those transfers are space constrained as they were originally intended for HD-DVD's 30gb limit. Additionally, Universal rushed many substandard transfers to market in the last days of HD-DVD, and it so happens that Universal used VC1 almost exclusively. That certainly isn't a fault of the codec, but lots those transfers have been brought over to Blu-ray unchanged.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Thu Feb 04, 2010 4:09 pm

Vrock wrote:
SNM wrote:
Vrock wrote:Eh, I forget things. How large of a screen are you using?

23.6" computer monitor from my computer chair. It's got 75%-100% of a movie theater's apparent size (depending on where in the theater).
THX and SMPTE standards say you should be sitting about 3 to 3.5 feet away from the screen. Were you exaggerating when you said 16 inches or did you mean it?

http://www.carltonbale.com/ht/calculato ... r_v4.0.xls

It depends on how I move in my chair. 16 inches is probably on the closer end of the spectrum, but really I'm not very careful about such things. I just get comfortable.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Thu Feb 04, 2010 4:15 pm

SNM wrote:It depends on how I move in my chair. 16 inches is probably on the closer end of the spectrum, but really I'm not very careful about such things. I just get comfortable.
No doubt you'd see less blockiness at the proper viewing distance, though. :wink:
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Thu Feb 04, 2010 4:19 pm

Look, I'm not going to argue technicalities here at all because it would make no sense. I think you're missing the point of what I'm trying to say. The simple fact is that from all the movies I have and seen, the bottom half of the picture quality sorted list (descending) is filled with VC1 encoded titles. In this case I do not really care why it is, but from where I'm sitting, whatever the studios are doing to those releases - they are doing it wrong. Well I do care in the sense of they should stop doing it. That's all. I have no religious preference for any of the codecs, for what it's worth the coded could be called "Grandma's Best HD Codec" and I would not care. If the quality is there.

Also, sorry to the OP for dragging this so off-topic.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Thu Feb 04, 2010 4:28 pm

TravelMug wrote:The simple fact is that from all the movies I have and seen, the bottom half of the picture quality sorted list (descending) is filled with VC1 encoded titles.
Yes, and what you've said is that you pretty much blame the VC1 codec and the VC1 codec alone for this poor picture quality. Correlation doesn't equal causation, especially with something as subjective as picture quality.

TravelMug wrote:I have no religious preference for any of the codecs, for what it's worth the coded could be called "Grandma's Best HD Codec" and I would not care. If the quality is there.
Well, you were the one singling out a particular codec as being the reason why picture quality suffered. This is unsubstaniated talk, and ignores the many 'reference quality' VC1 encoded discs on the market.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Thu Feb 04, 2010 6:07 pm

Vrock wrote:the many 'reference quality' VC1 encoded discs on the market.

So if you think AVS' reference quality title lists are garbage, care to share your personal list? ;)
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Thu Feb 04, 2010 6:34 pm

I sit about 2 feet away from my 50" TV when playing the 360 or when watching a movie by myself. If the wife's with me, I'm on the couch with her about 10' from the TV.

Edit:
What the hell is the point of doing a blu-ray transfer if you don't make it nice?
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Thu Feb 04, 2010 6:47 pm

Vrock wrote:Gladiator has problems. An old HD master was used, and digital noise reduction was added to cover its sins. This obliterated detail. To make matters worse, artificial sharpening was used to try to bring that detail back, which introduces artifacts of its own. It's not a horrible disc, but it sure doesn't live up to Paramount's "Sapphire Series" hype.


I didn't notice any artifacting when I watched it. Maybe I got lucky? I'll go watch it again this weekend, but I wouldn't have mentioned it if I thought it looked bad.

Vrock wrote:Film aficionados regard the Blu-ray transfer of Wizard of Oz to be near flawless.


IDK, I thought it looked a little grainy when I watched it. Wasn't expecting "Black Hawk Down" quality transfer. To me, it seemed like it was more... well, at least it looked better than the old VHS copies. It just looked like the transfers Disney's done. Sure, it looks better, but not "gotta have the blu-ray" better. That's one I could settle on DVD.

BKA wrote:Transformers:Revenge is great on Blu-Ray.


Go to your room, BKA. It's the grown-ups turn to use the forum :) j/k. but seriously, no. Sure, it's pretty and sounds good, but as a few people have mentioned, it's a terrible movie. "Plan 9 From Outer Space" made more sense than that polished turd.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Thu Feb 04, 2010 6:49 pm

I sit 100" from my 50" plasma. Perfect for me!
The wizard of OZ is awesome on BR. Best I've seen so far.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Fri Feb 05, 2010 6:24 am

paulWTAMU wrote:What the hell is the point of doing a blu-ray transfer if you don't make it nice?
Again, not everything is filmed with the same film stock, with the same style, under the same conditions, and not all sources are in pristine shape, so not everything is going to look the same. Blu-ray isn't supposed to "make it nice". It's supposed to faithfully reproduce the source.
Last edited by Vrock on Fri Feb 05, 2010 7:33 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Fri Feb 05, 2010 6:27 am

Flying Fox wrote:
Vrock wrote:the many 'reference quality' VC1 encoded discs on the market.

So if you think AVS' reference quality title lists are garbage, care to share your personal list? ;)
I don't have a 'personal list', but to name a few Blu-rays I found to be particularly excellent: Blade Runner, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Harry Potter V, Black Hawk Down, 2001, Spider Man 2.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Fri Feb 05, 2010 6:31 am

tikrjee wrote:IDK, I thought it looked a little grainy when I watched it.
Sigh.

It's *supposed* to look a little grainy. The film was a little grainy. It's 70 years old and was one of the first Technicolor films made. Film, not HD video. It's not going to look Attack of the Clones. Grain is not a bad thing.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Fri Feb 05, 2010 8:32 am

tikrjee wrote:
BKA wrote:Transformers:Revenge is great on Blu-Ray.


Go to your room, BKA. It's the grown-ups turn to use the forum :) j/k. but seriously, no. Sure, it's pretty and sounds good, but as a few people have mentioned, it's a terrible movie. "Plan 9 From Outer Space" made more sense than that polished turd.


Um, you just stated its pretty and it sounds good. I stated it was great on Blu-Ray. I missed where I said it deserved award nominations. Maybe you and others thought it was a terrible movie but I enjoyed it. I did add Plan 9 From Outer Space to my Netflix queue and its available to play now so I may check it out today.

Also I send kids to the room I don't get sent there. Being older than Transformers inception I enjoyed it being brought to the big screen for what it was. Which is why I rarely read movie reviews, everybody's a movie critic and think because they thought it sucked everybody else should too.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Fri Feb 05, 2010 8:56 am

If you like the show, I just got Doctor Who: The Complete Specials on Bluray. Looks fantastic. Must have for a Who fan.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Fri Feb 05, 2010 9:26 am

BKA wrote:You lost me after you said you saw New Moon, :D :) :lol:

My fiance and I went to laugh. We had a good time. :roll:
At one point, she called out, "that's not a love triangle, that's a codependency with legs!" and the whole theater cracked up.
In all seriousness, though, the sparkling scene in New Moon almost made me throw up in my popcorn bucket, and it was twice as watchable as Revenge of the Fallen. Maybe it's because I rented RotF, so I could pause it every few minutes and scream. I've heard that if you don't pause it the terrible dialogue and big explosions can put you into sort of a stupor, so you feel less pain. I think that was the NY Times review...
If you want to watch Megan Fox or Isabel Lucas on the big screen you're much better off finding some high-resolution scans or candid picks and making your own sideshow. If not that, Transformers 1 had better Megan Fox scenes and was much more watchable than Transformers 2.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Fri Feb 05, 2010 9:40 am

Yea, I was joking. My wife rented Twillight and she liked it. Just not my type of movie. And for me Megan Fox is overrated but again thats just my opinion.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Fri Feb 05, 2010 10:52 am

BKA wrote:Um, you just stated its pretty and it sounds good. I stated it was great on Blu-Ray. I missed where I said it deserved award nominations. Maybe you and others thought it was a terrible movie but I enjoyed it. I did add Plan 9 From Outer Space to my Netflix queue and its available to play now so I may check it out today.

Also I send kids to the room I don't get sent there. Being older than Transformers inception I enjoyed it being brought to the big screen for what it was. Which is why I rarely read movie reviews, everybody's a movie critic and think because they thought it sucked everybody else should too.


Wow, I'm amazed that had it on Netflix... so what'd you think of it? I still take that over Transformers any day. I grew up with the toons, too. I just feel the movies didn't do it justice, much like GI Joe. I'd rather not give Michael Bay more money than I already have. I think $6 for each matinee is more than enough.
Though, yes, the movies look good on blu-ray. I just can't sit through either one, so I can't recommend them.

BKA wrote:Megan Fox is overrated but again thats just my opinion.


Not just your opinion. Should be common knowledge by now :D
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Fri Feb 05, 2010 12:15 pm

BKA wrote:And for me Megan Fox is overrated but again thats just my opinion.


She's also got man-thumbs.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Mon Feb 08, 2010 12:50 pm

yeah but still, she's by no stretch ugly.
Transformers is weird to me...there's an artistry in the CGI used but the movie was just god-awful. At least it beats Day After Tomorrow which was both uber-lame and had miserable effects.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Wed Mar 03, 2010 11:08 am

Good:
Gangs of New York
Kingdom of heaven (looks absolutely stunning )
The Dark Knight
The pirates of the Caribbean (all three look great)
Saw V
Coraline
District 9
Silent Hill
Kickboxer (picked this up for $8 at walmart and was absolutely stunned by how nice it looked. Especially since i always thought it kinda looked low quality even for a vhs tape.)

Mehh to bad:
Kill Bill 1&2
Fight club
Napolean Dynamite
Taladega nights
The ones on my "bad" list didn't really look bad per say just came off looking more like upscaled dvds than true blueray releases. In the case of fight Club they decided to keep the dark look and graininess of the original film. Which does look great in the original film (especially with the subject matter), but when combined with hd visuals just kinda looks bad. Even if it was on purpose.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Wed Mar 03, 2010 1:25 pm

Vrock wrote:Film aficionados regard the Blu-ray transfer of Wizard of Oz to be near flawless.


IDK, I thought it looked a little grainy when I watched it. Wasn't expecting "Black Hawk Down" quality transfer. To me, it seemed like it was more... well, at least it looked better than the old VHS copies. It just looked like the transfers Disney's done. Sure, it looks better, but not "gotta have the blu-ray" better. That's one I could settle on DVD.


I I know it's off topic, But can you see the crew member hanging in the tree on the blueray releases or did they use the revised edition as the source.

Edit: just curious cause a friend of mine argues to this day that it's a myth despite me showing him screen caps.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Wed Mar 03, 2010 2:15 pm

I'm not a fan of the movie, so I haven't watched it, sorry.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Wed Mar 03, 2010 8:40 pm

Vrock wrote:
SNM wrote:
Vrock wrote:Eh, I forget things. How large of a screen are you using?

23.6" computer monitor from my computer chair. It's got 75%-100% of a movie theater's apparent size (depending on where in the theater).
THX and SMPTE standards say you should be sitting about 3 to 3.5 feet away from the screen. Were you exaggerating when you said 16 inches or did you mean it?

http://www.carltonbale.com/ht/calculato ... r_v4.0.xls
Just to nitpick, based on the calculator you linked, the longest recommended THX seating distance for that size of screen is 2.6 ft... I don't think I've ever seen THX and SMPTE recommendations for nearest seating, only for longest. The calculator's idea of "shortest recommended" distance is about 15 in. slightly closer than he sits.
...
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Wed Mar 03, 2010 8:57 pm

tikrjee wrote:IDK, I thought it looked a little grainy when I watched it. Wasn't expecting "Black Hawk Down" quality transfer.
Ahh yes, because Black Hawk Down is such a grain free release... :roll: :roll: Really confused what you're about, here. Black Hawk Down is an excellent release in large part due to the preservation of strong grain!
Vrock wrote:
paulWTAMU wrote:What the hell is the point of doing a blu-ray transfer if you don't make it nice?
Again, not everything is filmed with the same film stock, with the same style, under the same conditions, and not all sources are in pristine shape, so not everything is going to look the same. Blu-ray isn't supposed to "make it nice". It's supposed to faithfully reproduce the source.
Well, my definition of nice runs toward "faithful to the source"...

Films are more than just "pretty" pictures. Thanks for being the purist voice...
tikrjee wrote:
Vrock wrote:Gladiator has problems. An old HD master was used, and digital noise reduction was added to cover its sins. This obliterated detail. To make matters worse, artificial sharpening was used to try to bring that detail back, which introduces artifacts of its own. It's not a horrible disc, but it sure doesn't live up to Paramount's "Sapphire Series" hype.


I didn't notice any artifacting when I watched it. Maybe I got lucky? I'll go watch it again this weekend, but I wouldn't have mentioned it if I thought it looked bad.

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showpost ... ostcount=6
check out the comparison between the Extended scenes that weren't molested and the regular scenes that were.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Wed Mar 03, 2010 9:12 pm

I admit that I'm not afficiento but I know what I like, and what looks good to me.

Ones I like include:
Coraline - Everything looks nice a crisp, and the vivid images make it a movie my daughter really loves.
Dark Knight - It's a visual treat, the big sweeps of skyline are very impressive. Sounds is good, but I find a big variance between talk and action. I find when Gary Oldman talks I can hardly hear him, but in the next scene explosions rattle the whole house.
Toy Story 2 - Very flashy. Bright colors and funny characters grab the eye.
Charlie Wilsons War - I like the movie and it looks good in HD. 'Nuff said

Ones I didn't care for as much:
9 - For an animated film the picture seemed blocky to me. I will grant that the sound is fantastic though.
Braveheart - Maybe I was expecting a bit much for it's age, but I didn't notice it being worth an upgrade from DVD
Watchmen - I can't really put my finger on it, but it seemed to be lacking something. Like the movie, but wanted more of the blu ray experience
300 - Noticed a lot of blockyness
Final Fantasy: Spirits Within - Again, can't put my finger on it. Just didn't seem sharp.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Wed Mar 03, 2010 9:14 pm

I was surprised at the quality of Blazing Saddles on Blu-Ray. Even if the transfer was terrible, the movie would still be great, but the transfer was well done. Anyone seen Caddyshack on Blu-Ray? It's on top of my list but I'm not sure if it's better than an upscaled DVD.
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Re: Blu-Rays worth buying

Postposted on Tue Apr 20, 2010 2:10 am

emilycarvar wrote:Blu-ray does make all things better—even your old DVDs.Until you decide to upgrade the discs, let that Blu-ray player do the work for you. While many swear that Blu-ray doesn’t deliver the same bang without a 1080p HDTV to view highlighted movies on, there are plenty of flat-screen owners happily enjoying flicks on their 720p setups. Sure, the theoretical basis for upgrading to Blu-ray is that every movie delivers that super-sharp 1080p picture.



I agree, I used to watch blue ray's on a 720p screen before my current 1080p hdtv.Although blue ray's do look "arguably" better on my current tv.They were still undeniably sharper with better picture quality on the 720p than any standard DVD i had watched on it.
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