The Bionic Woman: Season 2 audio defect

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by MattHR, May 17, 2011.

  1. Kevin EK

    Kevin EK Producer
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    Guys, I strongly doubt that Universal will be doing a recall for this one. But I will note the audio issue in my review, to be fair and accurate.

    Keep in mind that on the other hand, they have provided some good extras, especially the commentary tracks by Kenneth Johnson for "Doomsday is Tomorrow"
     
  2. Jack P

    Jack P Producer

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    The DVD Talk reviewer I noticed didn't even say a word about the audio.
     
  3. MattHR

    MattHR Screenwriter

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    While I love KJ's commentaries and appreciate Uni including them, they do not negate the fact that several of the episodes have defective audio tracks (with "Deadly Ringer—Part I" being the worst that I've so far discovered). There is no way Uni will be able to avoid dealing with this one. The huge amount of returns that Amazon, Best Buy, Target, etc. will be handling will force them to address it ASAP.
     
  4. MattHR

    MattHR Screenwriter

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    It seems most reviewers don't actually watch the episodes, but simply scan through a few of them and watch the bonus materials. Most receive their review copies for free, so they likely don't want to "rock the boat" by providing negative reviews.
     
  5. MattHR

    MattHR Screenwriter

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    I found his assessment of the set's audio to be quite interesting:


    English Dolby Digital 2.0 Mono (which sounds a bit like an oxymoron) does the best it can, and doesn't disappoint. Though there's not much flash, there isn't much in the way of audio degradation, and all dialog is clear and discernable.


    Wow! It's good to know that someone received a set that wasn't defective! (end of sarcasm)
     
  6. Kevin EK

    Kevin EK Producer
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    Matt, I'd really like to believe that Universal would do the recall procedure here. But we've been talking about this since the Time-Life SMDM set where the same problems existed, particularly for me on the "Kill Oscar pt 1" teaser.


    I'd like to believe that there would be a large groundswell to have the sound corrected, but my instincts tell me that there aren't enough fans invested enough in this issue to exert enough pressure.

    I could well be wrong on this, and if I am, you'll see me announce that loud and clear within the forum.


    But it's just not that likely for a 35 year old TV series set to be recalled.


    I would be interested if Universal were to be able to explain what happened.
     
  7. MaxMc

    MaxMc Auditioning

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    I just finished watching Doomsday is Tomorrow Part 2. When Jaime gets gets her leg damaged, she goes to the auxiliary computer to fix it. At this point, the voices become muffled and impossible to hear without cranking the volume significantly. I bought 2 sets. One for me and one for my nieces. I will be returning both if they don't address this problem.
     
  8. Bryan^H

    Bryan^H Producer

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    Kevin being a reviewer of This set, do you have any way to contact Universal? At least let them know that You review product on this site, and noticed a glaring problem in certain audio tracks?



    This has been my most anticipated release for this year, and as of now I'm on the fence to wait and see what happens before I purchase it.


    I'm extremely disappointed.
     
  9. Joseph Burns

    Joseph Burns Stunt Coordinator

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    Let's not project pessimism, eh? Universal is looking into it, and I hope they are able to provide some relief.


    The picture quality is excellent and there is available audio for these episodes from various sources to fix these problems: the PAL releases do not have this issue (they do have the 4% speedup which would need to be reversed), and countless air tapes are in the hands of fans if the PAL conversion is unacceptable.

    It really comes down to a business decision that only they can make. I will put the good thought on it and not predispose the matter.
     
  10. Jeff Willis

    Jeff Willis Producer

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    Matt,


    Wow, I just received my R1 set and you called this one, I can't even hear the dialog in "Deadly Ringer Pt 1" prior to the 9:33 point. Very bad. Now, I have a hearing impairement but when I plug in the R2 disc, the same episode is crystal clear audio.


    I'm glad I have the S2 R2 set and the 6M$M T/L set with the crossovers included.


    I guess for me, it will have to be Bionic Woman disc swap exercise when I want to watch the series completely through.


    I never thought I'd say this about a series that's on my all-time favorite list and one where we've waited this long to see R1 releases, but I'd advise those out there that are on the fence after reading this thread, to pass on this set, unless the Extras are a significant reason for the purchase. I realize that if the sale #'s don't reach Uni's target, we may not see an R1 S3 release. It's up to the individual to make their call. I'll get the German S3 (English language track is included) set if we don't get an S3 R1 release.


    Best scenario imo, is to get the R2/4 sets of this series. Fortunately there are plenty of region-free DVD player alternatives available to hack your existing player or to obtain R-free software for your PC drives. I have both and they're an important part of my TV/DVD hobby.


    Everyone has a different take on this PAL speedup, but it doesn't bother me as much as it does with other ppl. I own many PAL TV/DVD sets and I can't tell the difference other than during the opening or closing themes. I've also played PAL dics for friends and asked them afterward "Did you notice anything different with this disc?" To date, I've had no one that has said "Yes, I heard a speedup issue, etc." Just my take on this though. It will vary with the individual.


    Bottom line imo, is this set is defective and should be handled like other defective sets that have been done in the past with other studios. At a minimum, Uni should arrange a disc #4 exchange program in the near future.


    I haven't checked the other episodes in this set as some have done.
     
  11. MBrousseau

    MBrousseau Stunt Coordinator

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    I don't want to add fuel to the fire but, I had my share of DVD exchange with that same company Universal. Years ago, in the same year, I had to send them back Monty Python's Meaning of Life and Back to the Futeure, both for a lack of quality control.

    Every single episode from the R2 Bionic Woman set has crystal clear audio. Why can't long waited region 1 set can be the same, if not better?
     
  12. MattHR

    MattHR Screenwriter

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    That, my friend, is the $6,000,000 question.
     
  13. Jeff Willis

    Jeff Willis Producer

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    Gord just posted a news item at TSoD about the BW S2 set with a statement from Uni. Link is here .


    It's not good news regarding any disc exchange program. They're offering a $30 voucher for credit redeemable at the Uni online store.


    They claim that the audio defects were present in the original elements and were unavoidable.


    I guess the PAL masters were in better shape? This just made my R2/4 sets more valuable.
     
  14. Jack P

    Jack P Producer

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    Crazy to hear that one set can sound better in R2 but the elements can't be used for the best R1 set.
     
  15. Jeff Willis

    Jeff Willis Producer

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    Quote:



    Yes, it doesn't make sense to me. I'm just glad I went region-free several years ago.
     
  16. JohnMor

    JohnMor Producer
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    Well, that sucks. Sigh. Again, I don't see why "the original elements" are so different for the two Regions. But, the bottom line is it does not sound like any correction will be done. I can understand not fixing every ep, but in this day and age of digital wizardry, they couldn't find a way to fix the first 10 minutes of audio on "DR1??" Really?? Even a third or fourth generation source for the few minutes of dialogue track would sound better than what they put out.

    Count me out for Season Three if it ever comes out. I only wanted "Fembots in Las Vegas" anyway, but was going to buy the set to support the show's release. Not now.
     
  17. Jack P

    Jack P Producer

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    The DVD Talk review has suddenly been amended to acknowledge the sound problem and it's been downgraded to Rent It!
     
  18. MBrousseau

    MBrousseau Stunt Coordinator

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    I see! No support from Universal to Bionic Woman fans in North-America? So glad I have my region 2. Count me out for season 3, too!
     
  19. Joseph Burns

    Joseph Burns Stunt Coordinator

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    So much for putting the good thought on it. Universal's reputation is intact.


    The elements do exist for an acceptable release, even if PAL elements have to be slowed back down to patch these parts. They do have an NTSC master of "The Return of Bigfoot, Part II" in it's SMDM incarnation, with better audio there (they tried to give that version to Time-Life back when that set was being developed, but fans wanted the original). Between tapes held by fans and the PAL releases, it's clear that the existence of elements is not the problem.


    The fact is, Universal has decided to cut off the project at this point. Whether it was the money, the time or the hassle, they didn't want to do another pass to fix this. Only they could say, but instead they want to claim that the elements don't exist. Now who can argue with that?
     
  20. RickER

    RickER Producer

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    I guess i will just keep my money. Universal's loss, not mine.


    Thanks for the heads up guys! And thanks for nothing Universal!
     

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