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Old 08-26-2014, 07:56 AM   #1
kristoffer kristoffer is offline
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Default Is Universal the worst BD studio?

I would argue yes! Their classics almost always have a lot of DNR and EE applied and they have their own annoying pause screen.
Anybody else with me?

This process has ruined some my all-time classics like BTTF and The Big Lebowski and you just know that one day they will all be re-released in a non-DNR and non EE version super collector's version! I mean, even Psycho had DNR applied!

 
Old 08-26-2014, 08:06 AM   #2
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I agree for the most part, but their releases of Double Indemnity, Touch of Evil, Schindler's List, E.T. have the right amount of DNR and all look fantastic. I'm pretty upset with BTTF, American Graffiti (looks hideous) and slightly upset with Jaws (I'm in the minority). At least other studios are making an effort to remaster their films in replace of the mistakes they made (WB and definitely Fox)

Last edited by jasonjl; 08-26-2014 at 08:08 AM.
 
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Old 08-26-2014, 08:39 AM   #3
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Every studio has their problems with the Blu-ray format, so it's hard to single out any one studio as being the worst:

Fox/MGM: Poor selection of TV releases.

Paramount: Lack of non-licensed catalog titles.

Sony: Lack of non-licensed catalog titles, non-US catalog titles without lossless audio.

Universal: Continued use of digitally manipulated materials, lack of TV releases in the US.

Warner: Fly-by-night encoding, releases without lossless audio.

For me, it is very tempting to say Warner is the worst.
 
Old 08-26-2014, 09:09 AM   #4
Thomas Guycott Thomas Guycott is offline
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Media Blasters. They've been teetering on the edge of bankruptcy for the good part of a decade and their inability to fulfill anything close to a timely release schedule reflects it.
 
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Old 08-26-2014, 09:10 AM   #5
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They're not exactly the worst.

Just lazy, cheap, disinterested in quality product, happy to re-release said inferior discs, heavy-handed with all of the things which make a transfer bad, prone to gimmicks to promote aforementioned regurgitations (Augmented Reality editions!) and will cheerfully bring out theatrical cuts of films where the extended - nee preferred - versions are pretty-much de facto on SD.

...but not the worst.

For further reading, please consult the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy under the listings for Vogons. That and its opinion of the marketing Division of the Sirius Cybernetics Corporation.
 
Old 08-26-2014, 09:39 AM   #6
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At least Universal doesn't use eco-cases. Because that's what matters most, admit it.
 
Old 08-26-2014, 09:44 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bueller View Post
At least Universal doesn't use eco-cases. Because that's what matters most, admit it.
Well said, that man!

Have only imported a few with them, but yes, it's true: eco-cases are profoundly and most assuredly crap.

Bully for Universal in their efforts to put profits into retaining those little bits of plastic at the expense of better transfers.
 
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Old 08-26-2014, 10:53 AM   #8
kristoffer kristoffer is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jasonjl View Post
I agree for the most part, but their releases of Double Indemnity, Touch of Evil, Schindler's List, E.T. have the right amount of DNR and all look fantastic. I'm pretty upset with BTTF, American Graffiti (looks hideous) and slightly upset with Jaws (I'm in the minority). At least other studios are making an effort to remaster their films in replace of the mistakes they made (WB and definitely Fox)
Imo. no DNR is always the right amount.
 
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Old 08-26-2014, 11:03 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kristoffer View Post
Imo. no DNR is always the right amount.
I think most Blu-Rays, even the very best transfers on the market especially for older films, have DNR or grain management applied in some way or another. It's just on the very best looking discs that you do not notice it because its so carefully and lightly well done.
 
Old 08-26-2014, 11:50 AM   #10
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Of the major studios? Yeah, probably.

Overall, I say Shout Factory has them beat - See massacre of their Werner Herzog set.
 
Old 08-26-2014, 11:53 AM   #11
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This probably doesn't matter to most, but I like Universal, for the simple fact that at least when they re-release something, it comes with a UV copy. Which is more than I can say for most others.

On the issue of quality, I've been pretty satisfied overall with all the studios. Then again, I'm way more of a casual movie watcher than most of you here. Ignorance is bliss?
 
Old 08-26-2014, 12:00 PM   #12
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From a UK perspective, I'd go Warner Bros. for worst blu-ray studio recently (but Universal haven't been much better). I mean seriously, if you can make an awesome US master, why the hell can't you port that over to the UK? Instead of the US masters, we have to put with international masters, where the quality suffers so they can cram a few more dubs on...

Man of Steel - bonus disc was US only, in the UK it was only available on the UV platform, when you redeemed your UV copy.

Pacific Rim - French DTS-MA HD 7.1, English DTS-MA HD 5.1, what the hell were they thinking?

Oblivion - Isolated score DTS 5.1 instead of the lossless TrueHD mix the US got
 
Old 08-26-2014, 12:01 PM   #13
Nika Nika is offline
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I would say yes too. What they did to that Hitchcock box still has me steaming. I think about 85% of their catalogue output is unwatchable imo. They really suck most of the time. Down with them
 
Old 08-26-2014, 12:19 PM   #14
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Most studios make bad choices because they don't care so much, in the end.
There seems not to be a proper team dedicated for each project, meaning that lots of things look like decided on the fly.
"Oh, I'm gonna make this bonus exclusive to the US because hell yeah !"
"Oh, I'm gonna use a BD-25 for this 2hr action movie because 20 Mbps is surely enough !"
"Oh, I'm gonna merge the UK and FR BD language-wise because who wants the English 7.1 DTS HD MA track in the UK anyway for this English-speaking movie ?"

And of course "I'm going to re-issue this title for the 5th time with the same crappy old master because better put a new 5min featurette and a new set of reproducted photos than using the new 4K restoration available for 2 years".

This is why I'm now buying almost exclusively from independant labels, because for them, added value is what's selling.
Studios are going to sell anyway. Even if The Hobbit had a mediocre encode, I'm sure Warner would seel crapload of it anyway.
 
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Old 08-26-2014, 12:29 PM   #15
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A lot of their older catalog titles suffer from DNR and EE( as well as using ancient masters). Most of their newer titles look pretty nice though.

Last edited by asmodeux21; 08-26-2014 at 12:31 PM.
 
Old 08-26-2014, 01:04 PM   #16
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Is Universal the worst major studio? Yes.
 
Old 08-26-2014, 01:07 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HD Goofnut View Post
Is Universal the worst major studio? Yes.
Together with Warner Brothers.
 
Old 08-26-2014, 01:17 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pieter V View Post
Together with Warner Brothers.
Looking at what Warner output this year, I'd have trouble agreeing with that.
 
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Old 08-26-2014, 01:39 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pieter V View Post
Together with Warner Brothers.
Maybe up until 2010, but in the last few years Warner has stepped it up IMHO.
 
Old 08-26-2014, 01:41 PM   #20
klauswhereareyou klauswhereareyou is offline
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They were preaty bad during the dvd days too. Early on 1998-2000 they had many discs that were non-anamorphic and just reused old VHS/laserdisc transfers, and who can forget later those wonderful double sided discs (franchise collections and tv sets) that were horribly defective. I'd say from dvd to blu-ray they've had a preaty awful track record.
 
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