Dts On Classics

Discussion in 'DVD' started by RobertSiegel, Apr 18, 2004.

  1. RobertSiegel

    RobertSiegel Screenwriter
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    I hope that we can accumulate some support on this post, so the studios hear us. I have always been saddened that the studios tend to leave DTS out on most classic movies, while they have the room to use it. My favorite catagory is musicals, and I would say there are only a small number in my collection of over 50 musicals (maybe 2) that have a DTS track. Even later musicals, such as XANADU, BEST LITTLE WHOREHOUSE, EVITA ect....have no extras so there is room. The fidelity on older movies is not the same as it is today, but we all have our favorite movies, and no doubt that DTS is the ultimate in available soundtrack delivery. From what I have read there would be slight differences in tonal quality and warmth to the classic magnetic stereo soundtracks. In my opinion, I would gladly pay a few dollars extra, since obviously the studios cost to use DTS raises somewhat in fees.

    We have some costly restoration happening in movies like King of Kings, Khartoum, Mary Poppins, Molly Brown, even Superman, you would think that after all that effort, the studios would want them to sound as good as they could.

    So I urge the studios that release movies like Ten Commandments, Ben Hur, Sound of Music, Hello Dolly!, Guys and Dolls, Sweet Charity (restored beautifully), and the wonderful library of Hollywood to start using DTS.....anyone else agree?
     
  2. Scott_MacD

    Scott_MacD Supporting Actor

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    I have no complaints with the Dolby tracks on any of the titles that you mentioned.

    Now, off to Home Theatre Software with you!
     
  3. RobertSiegel

    RobertSiegel Screenwriter
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    I have no complaints on some of these soundtracks either, but DTS is always an improvement, and wouldn't you want the best you could have?
     
  4. Magnus T

    Magnus T Supporting Actor

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    Yes.
     
  5. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    DTS isn't always an improvement!
     
  6. RobertSiegel

    RobertSiegel Screenwriter
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    well, to quickly respond, to my ears, there is always, without question for ME, more of a balance and lack of compression sound when I listen to a dts track. I was stating an opinion not a fact when I said DTS tracks sound better. I guess here, you have be very specific in word. (so much for the support of my post hehe). My real drive here was for the studios to see that we would like the choice for personal taste.
     
  7. Robert Crawford

    Robert Crawford Moderator
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    Geez, such a request has never been made on this forum before today.[​IMG]





    Crawdaddy
     
  8. Michael Reuben

    Michael Reuben Studio Mogul

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    That's always a good idea, in any context. But particularly here, where you're wading into an area that has been debated endlessly for years on HTF.

    If any consensus has developed among informed people, it's that the differences sometimes heard in DTS tracks are attributable to the mix, not the coding scheme. In one blind test using the same master encoded in both DD and DTS, there were minute audible differences in the codecs, but no one could say that one was superior to the other. The discussion can be found here.

    M.
     
  9. RobertSiegel

    RobertSiegel Screenwriter
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    Crawdaddy: So you're saying this is brought up often? Sorry for repeating something that has been brought up often, I have only been a member a short time so have not yet had time to go back, find, and respond to those posts instead. In any case, it seems there are people who are happy with the DD tracks alone, and in many cases, so am I. But in some cases where they really take the time on a soundtrack like the awesome Khartoum, King of Kings, or Rogers and Hammerstein films, it would be nice to select DTS, especially when it is a special edition, that's when I feel short changed. When they take disc space up with what seem to be some very worthless extras and could have had the room.
     
  10. Darren Haycock

    Darren Haycock Second Unit

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    This is probably gonna just turn into anoher DD vs. DTS thread, but for what it's worth... I usually prefer DTS for newer movies because I usually like the mix better. However, for older movies I don't feel like there'd be much difference seeing as how old the audio samples are, but whatever...
     
  11. RobertR

    RobertR Lead Actor

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    It might be nice to you, but others might prefer the extras, and you can't presume that your preferences are what should be followed.
     
  12. RobertSiegel

    RobertSiegel Screenwriter
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    "It might be nice to you, but others might prefer the extras, and you can't presume that your preferences are what should be followed. "

    Robert R: I stated this is what I prefer, and I don't presume my preferences should be everyone else's. Isn't this a board to say how we individually feel? My point was that I (and I said I) prefer a dts track over extras that are worthless (and of course I meant "to me," and of course that's my opinion. I think you may have "presumed" I meant everyone.
     
  13. RobertR

    RobertR Lead Actor

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    I certainly didn't mean any personal attack and I'm sorry if you took it that way. I was just emphasizing that reasonable people can disagree on the relative merits of DTS s. DD vs. extras.
     
  14. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

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    Robert Siegel, welcome to the forum. Unfortunately you hit early, on a topic that has been debated both rationally and emotionally many, many times on this forum.

    To be sure there are a good many here, who are ardent DTS supporters and who often have a lot of statistics and listening experience to support their claims—just as there are a good many who don’t see that much difference between DTS and DD 5.1 that can be attributed to factors inherent in the Codex itself.

    Now this is true of the debate on soundtrack reproduction on current movies, but there is much less empirical evidence to support the advantages of one format over the other in terms of classic films. Most especially when movies that were recorded prior to the advent of High Fidelity. I realize that you are not necessarily addressing films of the 30s and 40s, but there have been postings in the past where ardent DTS supporters requested that these older films be made available in DTS, claiming sonic superiority for DTS reproduction of low-fidelity, monaural recordings over DD.

    To be sure, I don’t have a high end audio system and perhaps I am not the most discerning listener, so I am no doubt missing something, but I must admit puzzlement as to claims of this type. In addition, I would observe that in my experience very fine reproduction may be found with a PCM track. This is especially true for recordings of musicals that were originally only recorded in either monaural or stereo.

    Therefore when you make such a sweeping statement as in your initial paragraph, many of us look with skepticism on that claim. Even though from your later posts, it is easy to read that you are only giving your opinion, your initial post gives the appearance of being a widely held view, if not actual fact.

    In brief (and in my limited experience) I do not find it credible that either DTS or DD has any discernable advantage for movies that were recorded with low-fidelity, monaural soundtracks. And regardless of which codex has an advantage (if indeed one truly does), I think for PCM would provide a superior alternative to either codex for many of the recordings you mention. I have, for example several operas on DVD with PCM soundtracks and find them to be first rate. You might like to compare the DD & PCM tracks on the Turandot filmed on location in the Forbidden City—though to be sure I know of no one who has been in a position to compare either track with the source.
     
  15. RobertSiegel

    RobertSiegel Screenwriter
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    Lew, thanks for respoding. I agree with you completely on the PCM tracks. I have the Jerry Herman Broadway at the Hollywood Bowl dvd, the the sound is incredible, although there is no Dolby Digital track at all on the disc which is strange. PCM on dvd is great!
     
  16. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

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    The DVD specs require either DD or PCM. PCM tracks take up so much space that there is often no room for DD, except perhaps at a very low bit rate—and with PCM there would be no point.

    DTS however is only optional. So when a DTS track is present, there also has to be a DD (or PCM) track.
     
  17. DaViD Boulet

    DaViD Boulet Lead Actor

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    Count me as one of those folks to almost always hears an improvement with DTS. Considering that even my old "mono" movies like It's a wonderful life sound so much better with PCM on laserdisc than they do with DD on DVD, I'd suspect that even *they* can benefit from a higher-fidelity codec/bit-rate compression on the DVD format...if PCM is too bandwidth-hungry to make it an option.

    Even old mono optical soundtracks with all their hiss and crackle have an "openness" that they don't quite have compressed in DD on DVD.

    Lots of ways to improve things...even mono movies might benefit from DD running at its max DVD bit-rate (even for 1.0 encoding) rather than the pathetic bit-rate mono soundtracks are usually given. Not necessarily saying that DTS has to be the one and only way to improve the sound of classic catalog titles, but for those of us who know how nice an "analog" sounding mono soudtrack can be, to hear folks assume that "old mono" soundtracks won't gain any benefit from hither-resolution/fidelity encoding is just silly.
     
  18. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    Instead of a DTS vs. DD debate, why not make it a financial one?

    I'm sure if the studios had the $$ to spend the time with a DTS track, they probably would, but if they don't, then why the need?

    Even if you can prove that the DTS is better, that doesn't mean the studios HAVE to use it. Their main objective isn't the best/highest quality movie presentation, it's the best/highest quality movie presentation for the budget they have. They also consider the return in investment to the work that's being produced as well.
     
  19. DaViD Boulet

    DaViD Boulet Lead Actor

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    Good point Mark.

    But it's a shame that they can't do both when higher fidelity doen't necessitate higher costs. For instance, what more would it "cost" the studio to simply select a higher-bit-rate for their 1.0 DD mono soundtrack when there's plenty of room on the disc?

    It's a combination of marketing/$$ concerns coupled with a frighting lack of understanding about basic picture and sound fidelity issues. Same reason why we have transfers that are over-filtered with ringing halos. Wouldn't have cost the studio any more to simple compress a transfer without excessive filtering and ringing...but they just don't have these concerns on their "radar" to even consider.
     
  20. MarkHastings

    MarkHastings Executive Producer

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    That's probably the key. As far as technology goes, it's amazing the knowledge people claim to have yet can't prove it in their work.

    EDIT: Or the other side would be the technician who makes a great suggestion, but the "suits" (who have no technological knowledge) are the ones deciding what's appropriate. [​IMG]
     

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