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The Outer Limits is turning 50....

Blu-ray

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#101 of 112 OFFLINE   hanshotfirst1138

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Posted March 23 2014 - 07:30 PM

Is the PQ any better than the R1 releases? I have a region-free Blu-ray player, so I would be able to play them. I know of course that the accursed flipper discs MGM used for R1 are naturally going to be more prone to scratching.

#102 of 112 OFFLINE   Ockeghem

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Posted March 24 2014 - 07:12 AM

Hanshotfirst,

I can't see any differences in picture quality between either release.  But the British packaging is IMO much better.  The single-sided discs of the UK collection is what convinced me to purchase the set.  Some discs in my North American DVD collection of the series would frequently freeze.  I actually purchased three copies of the North American release and finally gave up on obtaining one that would contain no freezing discs.


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#103 of 112 OFFLINE   Craig Beam

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Posted March 24 2014 - 06:47 PM

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It should be mentioned that the UK discs will sound somewhat higher-pitched, since they're in PAL format. Honestly, that's the only thing that's kept me from buying them. I don't notice it as much with stuff I'm relatively unfamiliar with, but The Outer Limits? I've seen most of them WAY too many times not to be distracted by the audio difference.


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#104 of 112 OFFLINE   Ockeghem

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Posted March 24 2014 - 07:19 PM

Craig,

I can understand your distraction.  What's very interesting to me though is that I have absolute pitch (in music), and yet the audio difference in the UK TOL sets doesn't distract me nearly as much as hearing any musical work that I know is written in a particular key to sound one half-step higher or lower (or even a smaller difference such as a quarter-tone either way).  It could be that some people are more sensitive to differences in timbre while others are more sensitive to pitch.  Just an observation. :)



#105 of 112 OFFLINE   hanshotfirst1138

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Posted March 24 2014 - 08:41 PM

Is that an inevitability with PAL, or just the product of bad mastering? The damn OOP R1 discs are so expensive. And not only does a Blu release seem impossible, but even a rerelease seems unlikely. It must not have sold well at all to have dropped OOP.

#106 of 112 OFFLINE   Craig Beam

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Posted March 25 2014 - 05:58 AM

One can also watch the entire series free of charge at Hulu. On my Outer Limits blog, I did a side-by-side comparison between an uncompressed MKV of the DVD and Hulu, and they look pretty much identical (see here). So there's always that option (you can't watch 'em on your TV, though, unless you've got an HTPC setup).

 

Interesting that they're out of print. I'd love to believe it means a blu-ray release is in the works....


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#107 of 112 OFFLINE   AndyMcKinney

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Posted March 25 2014 - 07:28 AM

Is that an inevitability with PAL, or just the product of bad mastering? The damn OOP R1 discs are so expensive. And not only does a Blu release seem impossible, but even a rerelease seems unlikely. It must not have sold well at all to have dropped OOP.

 

Assuming they're working from film prints (rather than from NTSC tapes), then yes, speed-up would be extremely likely. Even as far back as the VHS days, there were some titles that got pitch-correction applied to them, but this sort of treatment was usually reserved for big blockbusters like Lord of the Rings.

 

if they had been working from NTSC masters, there would not be any speed-up, but the picture quality wouldn't be as good as working from film masters.

 

I, too, am amazed these are OOP (though, you can still find some copies of the "volume 1/2/3" and "seasons 1/2" versions on Amazon right now, especially if you don't mind using the marketplace sellers or settling for a previously-played copy).

 

I bought a complete set (vols 1-3 together in an outer slipcase) at a pawn shop last year for seven bucks. For that price, I figured "why not", even if a blu-ray does eventually come out!



#108 of 112 OFFLINE   Gary16

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Posted March 25 2014 - 06:36 PM

Maybe this will be of some help. I have all of the Outer Limits DVD releases (as well as laserdiscs and VHS) including the PAL DVD sets. Tonight I compared "The Man with the Power" from both the US DVD set and the PAL DVD set using the same region free Oppo player.

 

Visually they look the same to me on my big screen projected from a state-of-the-art digital projector. Since I'm not someone with perfect pitch I could not detect anything in the PAL audio that caused me to feel uncomfortable compared to the US disc (the music sounded fine and it didn't seem like anyone's voice was higher pitched).

 

I checked the running times and found that the US version of "The Man with the Power" is 50:47 while the PAL disc was 48:59 for the same content.

 

If they do decide to put these out on bluray (I hope) they definitely need to upgrade the audio quality since that's the weak point of these transfers as they come from the optical, not original magnetic tracks. However visually they look very good so the elements should still be in excellent condition.


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#109 of 112 OFFLINE   Ockeghem

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Posted March 25 2014 - 06:54 PM

Gary16,

Thanks.  That was very interesting and informative.  Although I own the TOL DVDs twice over and the VHS tapes of the series, I envy you your collection of TOL laser discs. ;)

Just as a word of clarification, when I say I have absolute pitch, I am talking about definite pitch relative to music (musical notes produced by cycles per second = Hz.) and not indefinite pitch (sounds produced by cymbals, snare drums, and the like, etc.).  In other words, one need not have absolute pitch (as in music) to be able to discern that there is a difference in speed with regard to NTSC and PAL.



#110 of 112 OFFLINE   Harry-N

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Posted March 26 2014 - 05:25 AM

I'm one of the "very sensitive to PAL speed-up" people and find it most annoying and no matter what, I cannot enjoy it like that. 

 

So I'll stick with my old, original S1 and S2 sets on flipper discs. So far, they still play fine.

 

Harry


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#111 of 112 OFFLINE   Ockeghem

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Posted March 26 2014 - 06:12 AM

Harry,

Here's to hoping you never have problems with those discs.  I eventually did get a copy on my third try that was fine (at least until up to now).  But since this is one of my grails, I had to have the British set as well.  Happy viewing!



#112 of 112 OFFLINE   Harry-N

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Posted March 26 2014 - 02:04 PM

Scott - at least with the PAL discs, you get "control of your television" back sooner!

 

Harry


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My DVD Collection

A fugitive moves on, through anguished tunnels of time, down dim streets, into dark corners. And each new day offers fear and frustration, tastes of honey and hemlock. But if there is a hazard, there is also hope. - Closing narration to THE FUGITIVE, "Death Is The Door Prize".





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