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Mad Scientist
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  Reply # 309341 20-Mar-2010 10:55
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how do you know/what do you mean by your equipment "is setup properly"?

video: sharpness level not too high? are you outputting in full range of colours? CAN your receiver pass full range of colours (BTB WTW) - if it can't you must not output in full range. tv colour not too high? tv contrast and brightness optimum? turned off all gimmicks like dynamic contrast, hdmi black, special fill in of 200Hz, other weirdos (i'm not saying all gimmicks reduce PQ, but sometimes they can) ...

audio: speakers calibrated/EQ'd to your room? not out of phase? made sure autoleveling (sometimes called voice clarity, night mode, dynamic compression etc etc) turned OFF on player and amp? etc etc

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  Reply # 309343 20-Mar-2010 10:58
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the issue of black bars has been around since the DVD format was introduced, and the bars were more prominent on standard 4:3 screen.  So this is a non-issue for me on blu-ray on a 16:9 screen, though i do wish i have a larger than 40" screen.  Chopping the picture to fit the screen is a travesty IMHO, it goes against the director's intention.

I have over 140 titles and they all better than dvd versions in terms of picture and audio quality. Some catalog titles used old masters for dvd releases, they re-encode in bluray format. These do offer an improvement over dvd, but wont give you the wow factor.  The worst ones are concert titles and old TV broadcasts where the recordings were in standard def. then upconverted to 1080p.

The best ones are classics like Gone with Wind, Godfather, Wizards of Oz, where not only the studio remaster (rescanned) the title but also restored it well, removing dirt, film artifacts, re-colourised etc.  The process can take months or years with the end result a version thats close to its original state when it was released in theaters.  Now, this wouldn't have happened if it wasn't for bluray. 

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  Reply # 309347 20-Mar-2010 11:14
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I'd be voting for incorrect setup, plus the 42" Toshibas aren't known for being good TVs tbh

High res digest gave 3 stars for Springsteen and 3.5 stars for Robin Hood

And actually said the textures in Robin Hood were well advanced over the DVD version and that Springsteen had amazing audio(although said it was just worth a rent)

Did you get the Blu-rays off Trademe? Maybe they were a copy with fake blu-ray stickers




I have moved across the ditch.  Now residing in Melbourne as a VOIP/Video Technical Trainer/Engineer. 



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  Reply # 309350 20-Mar-2010 11:56
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Thanks to those who are offering helpful advice.  Let me take this opportunity to clarify a few points.

Firstly, I stated at the outset that all my BDs "were purchased in NZ from authorised retail distributors".  There are no dodgy disks here.

Secondly, many of my BD collection are OK with great picture and sound quality.  I have absolutely no problem with these ones.  So suggestions about poor equipment, wrong setup, I should buy new glasses (not yet suggested!), I should buy a bigger TV, ...  Sorry, wrong tack and not appropriate.

Thirdly, all my BDs that presented video in 21:9 format were doing so with black bars filling up a third of my screen.  That's an absolute no-no for me.  It's my prefrence to eliminate the bars and someone in the forum pointed out how I can resolve this problem.  I can now do this.  And to those who prefer to see the entire 21:9 image in its original format with the black bars, that's OK too but it's just not my thing.

So lastly, the point I am trying to make is that there are some crappy BDs out there.  I have identified two and I want to avoid buying more.  I can't readily identify the bad ones because there is no obvious way to do so until I get them home and play them.  All I can do is tell everyone the ones I have found.  It would be interesting to know of more so we can all avoid buying them.

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  Reply # 309353 20-Mar-2010 12:15
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i always check www.blu-ray.com for reviews before buying.



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  Reply # 309354 20-Mar-2010 12:27
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butlerboy: i always check www.blu-ray.com for reviews before buying.


Many thanks for that insight.  Most useful.

And here is what they say about Robin Hood Prince of Thieves:

"Sadly, Prince of Thieves is chained to a re-purposed DVD transfer that should have been tossed in the garbage to make way for a proper restoration of the film's original print. The studio seems to have rushed the disc out the door without giving it the sparkling high definition treatment it deserves. Here's hoping a future release will do right by Robin and his Merry Men".


The site doesn't say much about Live in Dublin and gives it 2.3 out of 5.  One reviewer puts it succinctly:

"Don't Waste Your Money. Bought this hoping for an upgrade over the SDVD. If anything it's worse. Colour bleeding, graininess, horrible blacks you name it you got it! The cover claims this show was shot using HD cameras. If HD stands for Highly Dubious I'd agree. Audio is tight and congested. Could have been a great disc with proper treatment. When will videographers figure out how to shoot concerts in low light settings. I've made better videos using my Sony HD camcorder. Please don't buy, if we continue to buy sh*t like this, it only encourages the record companies to put out more of the same".

QED.  I would heartily concur.

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  Reply # 309361 20-Mar-2010 13:03
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login:
butlerboy: i always check www.blu-ray.com for reviews before buying.


Many thanks for that insight.  Most useful.


Hey I gave you the link for this web site on the first page, guess you missed it! Where's my credit?! LOL Tongue out

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  Reply # 309375 20-Mar-2010 14:56
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old3eyes:
Dunnersfella: Two things.
1: Robinhood Prince of Thieves is not a Blu Ray movie, it's an abomination.
Kudos for admitting to own it though :)


2: The return of Philips TV's would be worse. Ewwwww.


Unless it's this one http://www.gadgetguy.com.au/philips-gives-good-girth-with-cinema-21-9-article-9108-1.html


Not sure why someone would not like Philips. I've had my 1080p Philips 47" LCD panel for 2 years and it's one of the best TV's I've owned in a long time. :-)

As for blu-ray my recent employement (non ;)) I'll be giving this a miss for awhile. Have my MagicTV box for the meantime anyway. LOL. Besides I like the $5 bargin bin.


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  Reply # 309417 20-Mar-2010 18:50
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Lurch:
old3eyes:
Dunnersfella: Two things.
1: Robinhood Prince of Thieves is not a Blu Ray movie, it's an abomination.
Kudos for admitting to own it though :)


2: The return of Philips TV's would be worse. Ewwwww.


Unless it's this one http://www.gadgetguy.com.au/philips-gives-good-girth-with-cinema-21-9-article-9108-1.html


Not sure why someone would not like Philips. I've had my 1080p Philips 47" LCD panel for 2 years and it's one of the best TV's I've owned in a long time. :-)




You must have been one of the lucky ones.  Phillips TVs aways came at the bottom of the reliability list on Consumer.  One of the reasons that they pulled out of NZ, AU and US.   Phillips NZ just downsized  to Kyber Pass in Auckland and only has a lighting division..




Regards,

Old3eyes


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  Reply # 309430 20-Mar-2010 20:15
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lchiu7:
Of course many directors these days choose to shoot Super35 and if they want to, could in the mastering for DVD and BD produce a 16:9 version that actually had more content that was shown in the theatre. But most don't do that since it's a challenge to frame a picture for both theatrical presentation (2.25:1) and then home video (16:9).

I don't mind the black bars. On a 100" screen it hardly makes too much difference :-)


Agreed, you just have to look at the abortions we get on broadcast tv where they are trying to make things 4:3 safe in a 16:9 frame. I think thats about the same amount missing as going from 2.3:1 down to 16:9, so they would either have to have massive clearance from the boom mic if they want to open the matte up to get 16:9 or else push everyone and all the graphics to the center of frame like you get on tv shows which looks like crap.




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  Reply # 309431 20-Mar-2010 20:18
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Lurch:

Not sure why someone would not like Philips. I've had my 1080p Philips 47" LCD panel for 2 years and it's one of the best TV's I've owned in a long time. :-)

As for blu-ray my recent employement (non ;)) I'll be giving this a miss for awhile. Have my MagicTV box for the meantime anyway. LOL. Besides I like the $5 bargin bin.



While they have had some good products occasionally, it seems that everything they made for the asia pacific market was total crap in their last 5-6 years here.

They still sell that crap in europe, but also some better things as well. But they have always been plagued with crap power supplies, failing capacitors because they were built cheap, and worst of all IMO, brain dead decisiosn when it comes to how the things operate that go against norms for the type of appliances.




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  Reply # 309436 20-Mar-2010 20:56
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login:
butlerboy: i always check www.blu-ray.com for reviews before buying.


Many thanks for that insight.  Most useful.

And here is what they say about Robin Hood Prince of Thieves:

"Sadly, Prince of Thieves is chained to a re-purposed DVD transfer that should have been tossed in the garbage to make way for a proper restoration of the film's original print. The studio seems to have rushed the disc out the door without giving it the sparkling high definition treatment it deserves. Here's hoping a future release will do right by Robin and his Merry Men".


The site doesn't say much about Live in Dublin and gives it 2.3 out of 5.  One reviewer puts it succinctly:

"Don't Waste Your Money. Bought this hoping for an upgrade over the SDVD. If anything it's worse. Colour bleeding, graininess, horrible blacks you name it you got it! The cover claims this show was shot using HD cameras. If HD stands for Highly Dubious I'd agree. Audio is tight and congested. Could have been a great disc with proper treatment. When will videographers figure out how to shoot concerts in low light settings. I've made better videos using my Sony HD camcorder. Please don't buy, if we continue to buy sh*t like this, it only encourages the record companies to put out more of the same".

QED.  I would heartily concur.


So as a conclusion - I would say the key to buying movies on Blu Ray, is to do your research first.
Online review sites seem to be the key... and sure not everyone wants to go home and research each and every disc they saw at the mall...
BUT - that's why iPhones etc are so handy Cool

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  Reply # 309443 20-Mar-2010 22:18
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Dunnersfella: So as a conclusion - I would say the key to buying movies on Blu Ray, is to do your research first.
Online review sites seem to be the key... and sure not everyone wants to go home and research each and every disc they saw at the mall...
BUT - that's why iPhones etc are so handy Cool


True that! www.blu-ray.com on the iPhone has come in very handy on occasion while browsing the blu-ray shelf at JB Hi-Fi! 

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  Reply # 309505 21-Mar-2010 13:25
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My biggest bitch about BD movies here in NZ is the big price difference between BD and DVD. Take 2012. DVD starts at $27, BD at $40. Or Star Trek movie last years release , still $45 (JB HiFi yesterday)




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  Reply # 309510 21-Mar-2010 13:37
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also: dvd costs $0.50, bd costs - $25 if you're lucky! i'm sure i've seen lower prices but the premium is - erm ... either ridiculous or due to the low demand

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