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Star Trek TNG Disks look Awful


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#1 of 47 Dave Scarpa

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Posted February 11 2008 - 03:18 AM

This past weekend was the first time I revisited any of My Next Generation collection since getting my Sony Bravia 1080p set last December. I remember the encodingof these were always spotty, but not untill I got this larger set did I realize just how Poor these things look. They are Ultra Soft and there's compression/Interlacing issues thru ought. Now I realize these were mastered on Video Tape and my god does it show. In Fact I'm not sure what could be done to clean these up. I was considering Ripping the entire series to my Apple TV, but since I can barely stand to watch them non compressed. Guess I rip them to a Lower rez to watch on my Smaller Ipod Touch Screen where the smaller Screen at least covers up some problems. And DS9 looks about the same...yuck.
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#2 of 47 Cameron Yee

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Posted February 11 2008 - 05:10 AM

The early X-Files sets have similar issues. The combing issues are most annoying to me and ultimately my Oppo is the only player that is able to handle them. Neither my HD DVD or BD players could.
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#3 of 47 AndyMcKinney

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Posted February 11 2008 - 05:10 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Scarpa
This past weekend was the first time I revisited any of My Next Generation collection since getting my Sony Bravia 1080p set last December. I remember the encodingof these were always spotty, but not untill I got this larger set did I realize just how Poor these things look. They are Ultra Soft and there's compression/Interlacing issues thru ought. Now I realize these were mastered on Video Tape and my god does it show. In Fact I'm not sure what could be done to clean these up. I was considering Ripping the entire series to my Apple TV, but since I can barely stand to watch them non compressed. Guess I rip them to a Lower rez to watch on my Smaller Ipod Touch Screen where the smaller Screen at least covers up some problems. And DS9 looks about the same...yuck.

The reason is the shows were edited on 1" tape. Editing on video was just coming into its own in the '80s and the results of editing on 1" look inferior to editing everything on film (as was done on the original series).

Another part of the problem is (correct me if I'm wrong), I think, all of the SFX shots were actually shot on 1" tape (which was another reason to edit on tape), so even though film elements might still exist for the live action, the SFX will still look grubby unless they're completely re-done from scratch. Considering Paramount are already doing this on the HD version of the original series, it's not something that can't be done. Question is, will they?

#4 of 47 Mark Talmadge

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Posted February 11 2008 - 06:05 AM

How do these shows look on a 32" HDTV? I'm planning on buying a 32" Westinghouse HDTV, 720p and I'm wondering how video quality is going to look.

#5 of 47 Nicholas Martin

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Posted February 11 2008 - 06:20 AM

If you watch these shows on an LCD, I suggest you either sit far back from the screen, or use whatever noise reduction options your TV has, because the show ( I don't have TNG but I have every season of DS9) will look worse than anything.

Viewing on a Plasma is better, but not by much.

From season 4 onward, DS9 looks a bit better, and continues to improve so by the season 7, the DVDs actually look quite nice. Seasons 1 to 3 however, especially season 1...yuck. Very yuck. The worst looking of them all is the pilot "Emissary". Look at the establishing shot of the bridge where Jake Sisko is fishing. It's disgustingly bad:
Posted Image

As mentioned in the Deep Space Nine thread in the TV forum, watching these older non-anamorphic shows on a CRT is really the best way to enjoy them, because on that type of screen these DVDs never look bad.

#6 of 47 Zack Gibbs

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Posted February 11 2008 - 06:29 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by AndyMcKinney
The reason is the shows were edited on 1" tape. Editing on video was just coming into its own in the '80s and the results of editing on 1" look inferior to editing everything on film (as was done on the original series).

Another part of the problem is (correct me if I'm wrong), I think, all of the SFX shots were actually shot on 1" tape (which was another reason to edit on tape), so even though film elements might still exist for the live action, the SFX will still look grubby unless they're completely re-done from scratch. Considering Paramount are already doing this on the HD version of the original series, it's not something that can't be done. Question is, will they?


I believe that little "visual enhancements" like phaser blasts, etc. were done on tape though I'm not sure, but everything else was film, including Enterprise shots and other model photography. They even reused a couple of the stock Enterprise shots done way back in 1987 for "Star Trek Generations."
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#7 of 47 Dave Scarpa

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Posted February 11 2008 - 06:32 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nicholas Martin
If you watch these shows on an LCD, I suggest you either sit far back from the screen, or use whatever noise reduction options your TV has, because the show ( I don't have TNG but I have every season of DS9) will look worse than anything.

From season 4 onward, DS9 looks a bit better, and continues to improve so by the season 7, the DVDs actually look quite nice. Seasons 1 to 3 however, especially season 1...yuck. Very yuck. The worst looking of them all is the pilot "Emissary". Look at the establishing shot of the bridge where Jake Sisko is fishing. It's disgustingly bad.

As mentioned in the Deep Space Nine thread in the TV forum, watching these older non-anamorphic shows on a CRT is really the best way to enjoy them, because on that type of screen these DVDs never look bad.

You'll be ok on a 32" TV, anything larger is when you'll notice it. I went from a 32" LCD to a 46" LCD.
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#8 of 47 Roger_R

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Posted February 11 2008 - 07:26 AM

The effects shots seem to have been sped up or slowed down on tape because it messes up the 3:2 pulldown of telecined film material. That's probably why it looks extra bad on a progressive display.

#9 of 47 troy evans

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Posted February 11 2008 - 07:29 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zack Gibbs
I believe that little "visual enhancements" like phaser blasts, etc. were done on tape though I'm not sure, but everything else was film, including Enterprise shots and other model photography. They even reused a couple of the stock Enterprise shots done way back in 1987 for "Star Trek Generations."
That's right. My understanding was that the show was shot on film and transfered to video. There's been talk as to the condition or even the availability of the original film prints for a remastered version. TOS was always film which is why remastered transfers were a no issue. Truthfully, TNG will be a more expensive process than TOS and you have to wonder if CBS will foot the expense. As far as the quality of the episodes, what I do is when I watch them on my HD DVD player I switch the source from film to video. Talk about a difference! The video is still soft at times, but, the resolution in some scenes is fantastic this way. I leave my resolution setting at 1080p/24 as well. You may also find if you change your resolution settings the picture may improve. Try starting at 480i and work your way up till the picture becomes to unsatisfactory. Then, drop down to the last setting. It may not be 1080i, but, it should look a little better.
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#10 of 47 Jeff*H

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Posted February 11 2008 - 09:15 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Talmadge
How do these shows look on a 32" HDTV? I'm planning on buying a 32" Westinghouse HDTV, 720p and I'm wondering how video quality is going to look.

I watch my Next Gen DVD's on a 32" 720p Olevia HDTV and they look fine, particuarly the later seasons. However, I'm very concerned when I upgrade to a 1080p 50" set they will look like crap.
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#11 of 47 Firebee

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Posted February 11 2008 - 09:26 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Scarpa
This past weekend was the first time I revisited any of My Next Generation collection since getting my Sony Bravia 1080p set last December. I remember the encodingof these were always spotty, but not untill I got this larger set did I realize just how Poor these things look. They are Ultra Soft and there's compression/Interlacing issues thru ought. Now I realize these were mastered on Video Tape and my god does it show. In Fact I'm not sure what could be done to clean these up. I was considering Ripping the entire series to my Apple TV, but since I can barely stand to watch them non compressed. Guess I rip them to a Lower rez to watch on my Smaller Ipod Touch Screen where the smaller Screen at least covers up some problems. And DS9 looks about the same...yuck.

Hmmmmm. That's weird, because I also own a Sony Bravia 1080p 46-inch LCD TV, and I thought ``Star Trek: TNG'' looked great, as does Voyager. I'm not noticing any interlacing or compression issues, either. Mind you, my DVD player is my Sony PS3. But, I didn't notice any of the issues you mention on the seventh season set, which I finished after I bought the new TV after watching most of it on my ancient 1999 Magnavox 32-inch TV.
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#12 of 47 Nicholas Martin

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Posted February 11 2008 - 09:32 AM

The image looks quite different depending on the screen.
I have:

13" and 20" cheap CRT
-on both, the DS9 DVDs look fantastic.

17" LCD computer monitor
-a grey area, because the image can be adjusted depending on the media player you use (codecs and filters, etc)

26" LCD HDTV (Toshiba Regza)
-with the combing, and every flaw in the image revealed even moreso, I try not to watch on this at all.

42" Plasma HDTV (LG)
-bit better than the LCD, but not much. The image is much softer when I set the DVD player to 'auto' for the interlacing, but it's a minor improvement.

#13 of 47 Ockeghem

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Posted February 11 2008 - 09:46 AM

We own a 57" Toshiba television, and all of the TNG DVDs (seasons 1-7) look fine. It could be that my expectations are not as great as some, however. I'm also watching these on a brand new code-free DVD player. I don't know if that would make any difference.

#14 of 47 Zack Gibbs

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Posted February 11 2008 - 09:51 AM

The player can make a world of difference for shows like this as well if it upscales.

Everyone list their player (if its upscaling or not), whether they think the image is good or bad (with details about artifacts and interlacing if you could), and who their favorite Starship Captain is (if you're gonna say Janeway or Archer just don't post).
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#15 of 47 Cameron Yee

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Posted February 11 2008 - 09:55 AM

Quote:
Everyone list their player (if its upscaling or not), whether they think the image is good or bad (with details about artifacts and interlacing if you could), and who their favorite Starship Captain is (if you're gonna say Janeway or Archer just don't post).
How 'bout picking a particular scene we can all reference? It would have to be a TNG scene for me since I don't own any DS9.
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#16 of 47 Ockeghem

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Posted February 11 2008 - 10:04 AM

Quote:
How 'bout picking a particular scene we can all reference? It would have to be a TNG scene for me since I don't own any DS9.
I'll start by choosing one scene, but if others want to reference a different scene, that's fine.

How about the scene in Sarek, during the playing of the Brahms Sextet, when the camera pans in front of Sarek, and then moves slowly toward him before it rests on him as he begins to shed a tear? If that scene is too 'dark,' maybe one of the scenes from The Arsenal of Freedom (much lighter?) would work.

I picked the one from Sarek because it's one of my favorite episodes in all of TNG. My favorite Captains are Janeway and Archer. Just kidding. Captain Kirk will always be my favorite, just as TOS will always be my favorite series. But I love them all. Posted Image

#17 of 47 Nicholas Martin

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Posted February 11 2008 - 10:14 AM

I posted that screencap from the DS9 pilot above.

Benjamin Sisko is my favorite Captain, as DS9 is my favorite Trek. I don't have any other Trek shows on DVD.

I don't have any high-end DVD players, but just about all my DVDs look marvelous on my Plasma.

Sony DVP-NS63P connected to my 26"Toshiba LCD

Panasonic DVD-S43 connected to my 42" LG Plasma.

Both through component (obviously) and neither player is upscaling.

#18 of 47 Ockeghem

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Posted February 11 2008 - 10:21 AM

Nicholas Martin:
Quote:
I posted that screencap from the DS9 pilot above.
Judging from the pic you posted, that is very similar to what I see on our large-screen t.v. To my eyes, what you've posted looks exceptional. But I will look at that scene again soon for comparative purposes.

#19 of 47 Nicholas Martin

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Posted February 11 2008 - 10:24 AM

It's the worst looking scene of all the DS9 sets, but looks good on a regular CRT television. Posted Image

#20 of 47 Zack Gibbs

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Posted February 11 2008 - 10:30 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ockeghem
How about the scene in Sarek, during the playing of the Brahms Sextet, when the camera pans in front of Sarek, and then moves slowly toward him before it rests on him as he begins to shed a tear?

Is this from Season 4?
"Because he's the hero that Gotham deserves, but not the one it needs right now... and so we'll hunt him... because he can take it... because he's not a hero... he's a silent guardian, a watchful protector... a DARK KNIGHT."


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