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Old 02-02-2021, 04:09 PM   #21
oneway23 oneway23 is offline
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I'd wait for the new Apple TV.

Vincent recently reviewed the new iPhone which had comparable color accuracy to a Sony reference mastering monitor. Apple knows what it's doing in regards to UHD quality. It's why myself and others have dumped disc.
Cutting it pretty close to JL's release, but, hopefully Apple can announce something prior to March 18th. I'll try my best to hang on.

By the way, how cool is it that you can shoot the extras for a movie straight from an Apple device to the app via Airplay? Maybe I'm late to the ball, but, that is REALLY convenient!
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Old 02-02-2021, 04:58 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by oneway23 View Post
Cutting it pretty close to JL's release, but, hopefully Apple can announce something prior to March 18th. I'll try my best to hang on.

By the way, how cool is it that you can shoot the extras for a movie straight from an Apple device to the app via Airplay? Maybe I'm late to the ball, but, that is REALLY convenient!
Luckily, when it comes to Apple, products often hit store shelves immediately after they are announced so if a new AppleTV is announced at the March product event, you won’t have to wait long to buy it.... like even the next day sometimes.

Expect updated processors, a new remote control, and enhanced gaming capabilities.
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Old 02-02-2021, 05:04 PM   #23
oneway23 oneway23 is offline
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Originally Posted by cmay91472 View Post
Luckily, when it comes to Apple, products often hit store shelves immediately after they are announced so if a new AppleTV is announced at the March product event, you wonít have to wait long to buy it.... like even the next day sometimes.

Expect updated processors, a new remote control, and enhanced gaming capabilities.
Thanks cmay...appreciate the info!
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Old 02-02-2021, 05:36 PM   #24
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Its amazing, because for a short period of time Amazon used to actually be the only one better than Vudu. Itunes did make the furthest jump. Still sticking with vudu.
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Old 02-02-2021, 05:45 PM   #25
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I find myself in a similar situation, as I have a 65' 4K HDR TV and the original Xbox One as my player. I also have some 4K movies in iTunes.
I'm waiting until I can get my hands on a PS5 or Xbox Series X so it can be my new 4K UHD player...but these consoles are sold out everywhere.
So I'm forced to choose between streaming 4K or 1080p blu ray upscaled.
I think 1080p bluray upscaled looks better. The 4K stream looks good I won't lie...but something in the picture is missing. I don't know if its the grain, the razor-sharp resolution, contrast, I don't know.
Just because something is "4K" streaming doesnt mean it is good video quality
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Old 02-02-2021, 06:03 PM   #26
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Its amazing, because for a short period of time Amazon used to actually be the only one better than Vudu. Itunes did make the furthest jump. Still sticking with vudu.
I can't tell a difference between Apple TV+ 4K and Vudu on a 65 in HDR
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Old 02-02-2021, 06:35 PM   #27
samlop10 samlop10 is online now
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This has been discussed many times in different threads before. But the gist of it is the best you’ll get from streaming right now will still be a trade off even when you’re comparing 4K/HDR streaming to standard blu-ray. Like mentioned above, especially for content with film grain, streaming will fare worse given the bump in resolution makes the grain finer (i.e. needs more data/a higher bitrate) but the bitrate is lower. For pure digital content with no grain, it depends on the bitrate. For example, the standard blu-ray of Stranger Things ssn 1 looks better than the 4K streaming version on Netflix since the low bitrate on Netflix causes macroblocking and fine detail falls apart.

iTunes and MA are usually better than Netflix but for one, MA is limited to some studios and they can’t include Paramount or Lionsgate. iTunes includes the great majority of all studios but their bitrate isn’t consistent, and with no rhyme or reason you’ll see the average bitrate drop to the mid ten’s (~15Mbps), sometimes in the exact same film, from one day to the next.

Also, even if a film is purely digital with no grain, trickier scenes like action sequences or shots that need more bitrate will still be capped to the mid 30’s Mbps, whereas a 1080p disc can go higher and isn’t fighting the finer detail, and expanded dynamic range, of 4K/HDR.

Lastly, audio is not even a contest imo. The highest you get on audio with streaming is ~770 Kbps (0.77 Mbps) whereas I’ve seen discs peak at 8 Mpbs or even higher. Some people say they can’t tell a difference, others can. I definitely can. And my guess is it all depends on how trained or experienced your ears are as well as the audio equipment you’re using.

So, even if the picture looks better on streaming (rare), you’re still compromised on the audio. Hence why 99% of the time it’s a trade off at best.
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Old 02-02-2021, 06:59 PM   #28
oneway23 oneway23 is offline
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It's indisputable that the raw stats are better, and discs are obviously much improved, especially when it comes to audio. I don't think anyone in here is making the argument that streaming is better than a disc. I guess I was just initially wondering this morning how frequently the raw numbers translate to actual performance.

I realize where I am and I'm respectful of the fact that this forum is largely a house of worship for physical media. I'm so grateful it's here, but, I would also ask people to remember that everyone's situation is unique.
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Old 02-02-2021, 07:08 PM   #29
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Lastly, audio is not even a contest imo. The highest you get on audio with streaming is ~770 Kbps (0.77 Mbps) whereas I’ve seen discs peak at 8 Mpbs or even higher. Some people say they can’t tell a difference, others can. I definitely can. And my guess is it all depends on how trained or experienced your ears are as well as the audio equipment you’re using.
It also depends on how you compare. Unless you have done a double-blind test with accurate level-matching, and made sure that the encodings originate from the same source material, you don't really know if you can hear a difference between encodings at the kind of quality levels we're discussing here. Everyone is affected by confirmation bias, no matter how experienced.
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Old 02-02-2021, 08:45 PM   #30
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It also depends on how you compare. Unless you have done a double-blind test with accurate level-matching, and made sure that the encodings originate from the same source material, you don't really know if you can hear a difference between encodings at the kind of quality levels we're discussing here. Everyone is affected by confirmation bias, no matter how experienced.
True. This has been brought up as well but when there are tests done, they never mention the pool of participants (casual viewers? People who are more enthusiastic about movies? Adults? Teenagers? Children? Older people?), the equipment used (speakers from the TV? Sound bar? An actual home theater?), the setting (was it quite? Was there some noise around?), the content used (a drama with low dynamic range? An action film with plenty of dynamics?), the bitrate of the content used, which questions they asked (did it sound significantly different? Was there a difference at all?), the exact responses, etc. Basically no specifics on how the tests were carried out. And the few times they give results they just say there’s no “significant” difference according to the people that participated in the tests. What does “significant” mean exactly? It’s a relative term, and for most people like us that like movies more than most, “not significant” could be significant for us.

There’s also the fact that theaters have not done away with lossless audio. If there really is no difference hearing-wise, then why haven’t they switched to lossy, compressed audio when it would be cheaper/easier to transfer the movie files and use less storage for them?
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Old 02-02-2021, 09:08 PM   #31
Fiffy Fiffy is offline
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Originally Posted by samlop10 View Post
True. This has been brought up as well but when there are tests done, they never mention the pool of participants (casual viewers? People who are more enthusiastic about movies? Adults? Teenagers? Children? Older people?), the equipment used (speakers from the TV? Sound bar? An actual home theater?), the setting (was it quite? Was there some noise around?), the content used (a drama with low dynamic range? An action film with plenty of dynamics?), the bitrate of the content used, which questions they asked (did it sound significantly different? Was there a difference at all?), the exact responses, etc. Basically no specifics on how the tests were carried out.
Not sure what tests you are referring to, but when organizations like the ITU, EBU, AES etc. do subjective listening tests, they follow well-documented recommendations such as ITU-R BS.1116. The selection of listener panels, equipment, environment etc. is well defined. To assess codecs, panels of expert listeners are used that are trained in detecting coding artifacts.
Quote:
And the few times they give results they just say there’s no “significant” difference according to the people that participated in the tests. What does “significant” mean exactly? It’s a relative term, and for most people like us that like movies more than most, “not significant” could be significant for us.
Usually the results are expressed in scores that are calculated across the listener panel.
Quote:
There’s also the fact that theaters have not done away with lossless audio. If there really is no difference hearing-wise, then why haven’t they switched to lossy, compressed audio when it would be cheaper/easier to transfer the movie files and use less storage for them?
35mm presentations in theaters usually use lossy compression to this day. Only newer digital cinemas do not. Compared to the video in a DCP package the file size of a lossless audio track is negligible.
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Old 02-02-2021, 09:50 PM   #32
samlop10 samlop10 is online now
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Originally Posted by Fiffy View Post
Not sure what tests you are referring to, but when organizations like the ITU, EBU, AES etc. do subjective listening tests, they follow well-documented recommendations such as ITU-R BS.1116. The selection of listener panels, equipment, environment etc. is well defined. To assess codecs, panels of expert listeners are used that are trained in detecting coding artifacts.
Usually the results are expressed in scores that are calculated across the listener panel.
35mm presentations in theaters usually use lossy compression to this day. Only newer digital cinemas do not. Compared to the video in a DCP package the file size of a lossless audio track is negligible.
Could you post some of those test results? Or links to them here?

I googled the tests but i did not find any where they were testing a complex mix (like from an action movie) using a home theater system. They either used only a voice mixed with music and/or used headphones. Pricey, good quality headphones, mind you, but that’s definitely not the same as using a home theater speaker system. There’s also too much going on at times with complex audio mixes (think fantasy, sci-fi, or action films like The Avengers, Avatar, or Harry Potter) where there are various objects and elements in them at the same time in some of their scenes (various voices, music, explosions, crashes, wind, rain, vehicle sounds, etc., all happening at once), and I don’t think just a voice with music is a good reflection of how movies are mixed, and hence how compressing them affects their quality hearing-wise. Not to mention they are mixed for surround speaker systems, not headphones.
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Old 02-02-2021, 10:08 PM   #33
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Could you post some of those test results? Or links to them here?
Industry test reports are typically not freely available.
Quote:
I googled the tests but i did not find any where they were testing a complex mix (like from an action movie) using a home theater system. They either used only a voice mixed with music and/or used headphones.
They don't use random action movies. Usually the panel selects a number of "critical" samples that expose various types of artifacts. These samples are then level matched and stored on the test system.
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Old 02-02-2021, 10:17 PM   #34
samlop10 samlop10 is online now
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Originally Posted by Fiffy View Post
Industry test reports are typically not freely available.
I would not mind buying a couple if they show and prove those results. I’m assuming you’ve at least partially read them since you’re using them in the discussion, and thus you’d know which ones show those test results?

Quote:
They don't use random action movies. Usually the panel selects a number of "critical" samples that expose various types of artifacts. These samples are then level matched and stored on the test system.
Right, but that’s the issue at hand, movies (and shows), and they seem to classify a sample of a voice combined with music as “critical”. And then they test it with headphones, or speaker systems which they do not even specify the brand or model of.
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Old 02-02-2021, 10:31 PM   #35
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I’m 100% digital. Will never criticize the physical 4K disc collectors, without them the days of $5 digital codes would disappear.

In regards to quality, I’m streaming to a 120 inch screen. Any noticeable differences in image quality is significantly smaller now compared to even a year or two ago and certainly not enough of a difference for me to continue to pay $25 per disc vs $5 digital considering the high volume of titles I buy (400+ since March).

Biggest difference is with Dolby Atmos tracks and even with those, the streaming Atmos still sounds great. But unlike the image quality video, the audio quality differences are noticeable to some degree.
You've just admit it that the physical media is still better, so why not have the discs as well for backup because, anything can happen to your digital movies. Streaming services are very unpredictable, they can do anything they want to your movies (at will), and the worst of all they can cease operations, and there is nothing you can do about it. I don't want to depend on the internet nor a streaming service to gain access to my movie collection. If your ISP is down for a long period of time, so is your movies.
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Old 02-02-2021, 10:50 PM   #36
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Originally Posted by slimdude View Post
You've just admit it that the physical media is still better, so why not have the discs as well for backup because, anything can happen to your digital movies. Streaming services are very unpredictable, they can do anything they want to your movies (at will), and the worst of all they can cease operations, and there is nothing you can do about it. I don't want to depend on the internet nor a streaming service to gain access to my movie collection. If your ISP is down for a long period of time, so is your movies.
All of this are possible just like disc rot or players stopping working or even the lack of UHD players in the market. Time and again we have been assured by the hardcore digital folks that 99.99% of the digital movies have remained in their library for years. If something disappears it's mostly temporary.

I have done extensive comparisons (please feel free to check my bit rate thread). 4K HDR iTunes or MA stream looks better than even the highest bit rate 1080p Blu-ray.

95% of the time I struggle to discern anything major visually from a reasonable viewing distance.

I just compared Oldboy 4K DV digital and 1080p physical and the digital easily looks better including grain management.

Grain rendition is fine most of the time. It can choke a bit on super busy frames but it's certainly within my level of tolerance. The difference between 4K digital and physical is less than 1080p digital and physical.
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Old 02-02-2021, 11:17 PM   #37
Fiffy Fiffy is offline
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I would not mind buying a couple if they show and prove those results. I’m assuming you’ve at least partially read them since you’re using them in the discussion, and thus you’d know which ones show those test results?
I had some involvement with this due to a former job I had (yes, it had to do with video streaming; no, I was not on any listening panels although I had some opportunities to do double blind tests, which was eye opening). But I'm out of this field for years now and don't have any links readily available for you.

Companies are sensitive with regard to test reports, because they can potentially be (mis-)used for marketing purposes. That's probably why you don't find them plastered all over Google.
Quote:
Right, but that’s the issue at hand, movies (and shows), and they seem to classify a sample of a voice combined with music as “critical”. And then they test it with headphones, or speaker systems which they do not even specify the brand or model of.
Who is "they"?
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Old 02-02-2021, 11:25 PM   #38
samlop10 samlop10 is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fiffy View Post
I had some involvement with this due to a former job I had (yes, it had to do with video streaming; no, I was not on any listening panels although I had some opportunities to do double blind tests, which was eye opening). But I'm out of this field for years now and don't have any links readily available for you.
Hard to believe then since none of us can see the results of those tests and all the specifics involved in them. Also, technology changes pretty often, so those tests should probably be done again given the newer equipment available which is different from what was available years ago.

Quote:
Who is "they"?
People who carried out those tests. From the ones I saw online from the organizations you posted, that’s what they used for their tests. A voice and/or music, sometimes combined together. But I couldn’t find any tests where they compared movie content using the codecs available for movie media (Dolby TrueHD vs DD+ for example, or DTS-HD MA vs DTS).
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Old 02-02-2021, 11:48 PM   #39
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Originally Posted by samlop10 View Post
Hard to believe then
What is hard to believe? What I said is just that you don't know if you can really tell a difference if you haven't done a proper double blind test. With some effort you can set one up yourself with a friend. It's not that hard (only the level-matching is a bit tricky), but very few people do it.

The results of professional listening tests are used for technical development (e.g. the max bitrates of codecs like AC3 were chosen after listening tests) and to derive best practices for codec selection and configuration in different scenarios.
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Old 02-03-2021, 12:52 AM   #40
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Originally Posted by slimdude View Post
You've just admit it that the physical media is still better, so why not have the discs as well for backup because, anything can happen to your digital movies. Streaming services are very unpredictable, they can do anything they want to your movies (at will), and the worst of all they can cease operations, and there is nothing you can do about it. I don't want to depend on the internet nor a streaming service to gain access to my movie collection. If your ISP is down for a long period of time, so is your movies.
Why not buy the physical for back ups?

I bought 400 digital 4K movies at about $5 each ($2000 total) since March 2020.

400 physical 4K blu-rays at $15 to $25 each just to have back ups?

Streaming 4K HDR and Atmos from iTunes and MoviesAnywhere looks and sounds fantastic on my set up. VUDU not so much. Can it look better with physical? Sure... but that marginal difference with video and slightly larger difference with audio isnít worth it for me to continue buying physical media. I think I already stated that in my original post that you quoted.

For a lot of others... that difference is enough to warrant supporting physical and I have no problems with that. Without them, I wouldnít be able to get those new release 4K digital codes so cheaply. Itís a symbiotic relationship and I totally respect that.
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