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Tom Cruise speaks out about the Soap Opera Effect

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Wayne_j, Dec 5, 2018.

  1. Message #21 of 50 Dec 6, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2018
    Brent Reid

    Brent Reid Supporting Actor

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    Quite bizarre that we live in a world where TV manufacturers routinely include so many image quality-killing functions that no one asked for, wouldn't miss and would be better off without. Yet they drop 3D, which many find useful. Go figure.
     
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  2. BobO'Link

    BobO'Link Producer

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    I have 1, and only 1, TV series that was apparently mastered poorly and needs frame interpolation turned on to look acceptable (Chuck on DVD). Without it on the image is a noisy, grainy, jaggy laden mess. When I watch that series is the only time that "feature" is enabled on my set.
     
  3. Worth

    Worth Cinematographer

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    So does plasma, but for some reason my plasma still has it.
     
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  4. Todd Erwin

    Todd Erwin Producer
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    Back when I was still selling TVs, I would go around the department and turn off frame interpolation on most of the demo displays (the exceptions would be demos set up by the mfr.).
     
  5. JQuintana

    JQuintana Supporting Actor

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    I guess I'm the odd man out. Several years ago I saw a set up at Best Buy that was playing U-571 on some big new LCD or plasma TV and it must of had the "soap opera" setting on because it looked so life-like, almost 3D. I sort of like the look. However I really haven't had that occur at home because I guess the TV I've used at home don't have the setting needed to make that soap opera effect kick in.
     
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  6. Malcolm R

    Malcolm R Executive Producer

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    I saw the same thing at my Best Buy with U-571. Must be they were doing it on purpose for their in-store demos.

    I didn't like it.
     
  7. Carlo Medina

    Carlo Medina Executive Producer

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    Again, it boils down to "intent" by the creators, and personal preference on the part of the audience.

    Take music, for example. I try to purchase the most "neutral" sounding headphones and speakers and amps, and play back from the highest quality source available (lossless if possible, high bit rate the better). I'm trying to get close to what the band, mixers, engineers and producers created. Others will EQ the heck out of their sound (more bass, more mid, more treble, whatever).

    Some people will like the SOE, and I'm not here to dictate what others tastes are like. But if you come to my house, the SOE will be off.
     
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  8. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Executive Producer
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    When I finally got a UHD player that could decode Dolby Vision, the first movie with it I played was Spiderman: Homecoming. Since the Dolby Vision template hadn't been calibrated on my OLED, it came up and I immediately saw that motion interpolation was turned on. I had to pause the movie and go into the settings to get those features turned off in order for the movie to return to the "film domain." For a few brief seconds, I couldn't believe Dolby Vision that everyone had been raving about looked so completely horrible.
     
  9. dpippel

    dpippel HTF Premium Member
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    If you have an LG OLED Matt, ALL of the default picture modes including the DV and HDR modes have motion interpolation, Dynamic Contrast, Noise Reduction, etc. turned on from the factory. You have to go in and disable them manually. Most TVs are configured this way out of the box.
     
  10. B-ROLL

    B-ROLL Screenwriter

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    Costco did the same thing for their TVs with SW:E4ANH (AKA Star Wars (TM) 1977)... It looked like it was shot on tape :(
     
  11. Brian Kidd

    Brian Kidd Cinematographer
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    Honestly, though I have turned off motion interpolation on my TV, I do turn it on sometimes on lower-resolution material because I like the look of it. I don't use it on anything with a lot of detail, though, because the artifacting causes a noticeable loss of image detail and ugly ghosting during panning shots. It's one of those things that I think is an interesting idea, but that still has too many deficits to be something I'd use on a regular basis. I 100% agree that it shouldn't be set as the default on televisions, though, because the vast majority of people don't realize that they could actually get a better image with it turned off. Then again, I'm someone who much prefers the higher bitrate available on physical discs than via streaming while the average viewer probably can't tell a difference and just likes not having to get up, find a disc, and put it in a player. I used to get so agitated when I worked at a video store and people would rent movies that were letterboxed and then would complain about the black bars. I used to give them a demonstration using a folded dollar bill as a visual aide, but most people simply didn't care. They just wanted their screens filled. Unfortunately, that's why we see so much classic TV shown at least partially cropped or stretched out to fill the 16x9 screen. We, as HTF members, see films and shows as something more than casual entertainment, while the average viewer just doesn't care. It is what it is. I appreciate someone as high profile as Cruise at least making an effort to educate people, though. At least a few might listen to him, which is about all anyone can hope for.
     
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  12. chrislong2

    chrislong2 Agent

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    That's 16x10, and while I'm perfectly aware that I'm not going to be in the majority here where the prevailing view is that it "should be a crime against humanity to dare stretch 4x3", I actually prefer watching 4x3 in 16x10 where it stretches them some but not so much that they become crazy fat but gives you more screen real-estate. Yeah I know to probably most here that's still a crime. And GASP, I even sometimes have been known to go 16x9. I'm sorry but I HATE the black bars. I understand OAR - I understand the picture looks like it's supposed to in OAR. I also understand that on the size of my screen the picture is too small for my enjoyment in 4x3 and the black bars drive me batty and it's a more enjoyable watch for me to have it wider at 16x10 even if that means everything becomes a bit fatter. It's not that I don't think 4x3 is "right" and it's not that I don't think 4x3 is best as far as artistic intent and purity, but for my personal enjoyment I often stretch those suckers (which in my case mostly involves old TV shows). Let the rock throwing begin....
     
  13. B-ROLL

    B-ROLL Screenwriter

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    That's why most TVs and blu-ray players have a fit to screen or similar option...It sadly doesn't work the other way for Academy ratio films/tV shows that have been forced to 16:9 or whatever.
     
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  14. Joel Fontenot

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    Costco here does it with an in-store looped sample of "The Black Panther". Looks clean and smooth as a whistle, but horrible at the same time.
     
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  15. Mark Mayes

    Mark Mayes Stunt Coordinator

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    I just got a Samsung QLED and was afraid at first that the waxy, video feel was going to be there for good. I had had two plasmas before and never had to worry about it, while certainly being aware of it. I merely thought it was a bug in older TVs when HD began. Within minutes, I figured out how to remove the interpolation and was over my "buyer's remorse."

    I get people who think it's good, but I also know people who have resisted getting expensive new sets because of these plastic-looking pictures. I just thought it was an old fad until two weeks ago.
     
  16. chrislong2

    chrislong2 Agent

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    Right, TV's and players do have that option, but it only actually works for TV signals and (most) DVD's, not blu-ray's. 1.33 content on blu is forced to be in a 16x9 container so you can't stretch it even if you want to and are forced to the black bars (which again many here would probably applaud but frustrates me). What really sucks is some companies are releasing DVD's now in that forced container thing too which is terrible because besides the removal of the choice, it also uses up DVD's already limited resolution to encode the black bars as a part of the picture instead of letting the player/TV add the bars.

    As for the soap opera thing, on my TV I find it to generally be helpful on low setting at smoothing out some of the jerkiness on some scenes, but it's not a one-size-fits-all thing and I totally understand where Cruise is coming from. I'd rather manufacturers defaulted to it off.
     
  17. larryKR

    larryKR Stunt Coordinator

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    I don't understand why you are unable to change the aspect ratio on your Blu-rays. I can change the aspect ratio on 1:33 Blu-rays to a variety of different ratios. I'm using an older Oppo player on an even older Panasonic plasma TV.
     
  18. RolandL

    RolandL Producer

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    I wish Tom Cruise would complain about Mission Impossible Fallout not being released in 3D on Blu-ray instead.
     
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  19. MatthewA

    MatthewA Lead Actor

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    I, too, am disappointed that they sacrificed 3D at the altar of all these other useless doohickeys, but they never learn, do they? They always make the same mistakes of expecting the technology itself to prop up bad scripts, clueless direction, and/or miscast actors. The difference is that now they actually got a viable way to bring 3D into the home that wasn't a let-down like the anaglyph experiments were in the 1990s; there, they tried it on almost everything from a Diet Coke commercial to a Married with Children episode, but it all looked flat and had distorted color. That probably prejudiced people against it along with a lot of laughable attempts at faux 3-D. But since it's still at the same frame rate, 3-D does not distort your idea of how movies look the way the "soap opera effect" does.

    There is such a thing as being too realistic. When it starts to look more "real" than real life, then you get into uncanny valley territory, and it becomes discomfiting to watch.
     
  20. JQuintana

    JQuintana Supporting Actor

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    Problem is 3D had a lot stacked against it from the start. Soap effect isn't even in the same category of issue.
     

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