Warner's lack of lossless audio on Blu-ray - High-Def Digest Forums
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Old 10-23-2008, 12:01 PM
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Default Warner's lack of lossless audio on Blu-ray

Here is a nice article I copied from www.tvpredictions.com. It has some good points about the lack of lossless audio on titles like Speed Racer and Journey to the Center of the Earth.



Warner's Blu-ray Discs Have Me at a Loss

I am somewhat disturbed at the recent Blu-Ray releases from Warner Brothers for their failure to include a lossless audio track. In particular, the last two major releases from Warner Brothers on Blu-Ray, namely Speed Racer and Journey to the Center of the Earth, did not include either a Dolby True HD or DTS HD Master Audio track. All that was included was a plain ole Dolby Digital track of the kind found on the standard DVD.

As far as I am aware, there has been no explanation from Warner Brothers as to why a lossless track was not included on either release. I can only surmise that a lossless track was not included for reasons of lack of space. Speed Racer was issued on a 25 GB disc which had less storage capacity than at dual layer HD DVD. Perhaps, given tight space, Warners decided that they would rather maximize the video encode at the expense of the audio rather than compromise both. However, that could have been avoided had the release been issued on a 50 GB disc which would have provided more than enough space.

I find it very odd for Warners to abandon HD DVD partially due to its lack of storage capacity as compared to Blu-Ray and yet, issue a major release without a lossless track. The same is true for Journey to the Center of the Earth. While Journey was issue on a 50 GB disc, I can only assume that there was not enough storage capacity for a lossless track while including a 2D and 3D version of the film on the same disc. If that were the case, the film should have been issued on two 50GB discs, one 2D with a lossless track and one in 3D with lossless track.

Amazingly, a film like Run Fat Boy Run, issued by Warner Brothers via their New Line subsidiary, was not only issued with a DTS HD Master Audio track, but a 7.1 track to boot. While I enjoyed Run Fatboy Run, it did miniscule box office compared to either Speed Racer or Journey to the Center of the Earth. If Run Fatboy Run warranted a 7.1 lossless track, it is really hard to argue that Speed Racer and Journey to the Center of the Earth didnít warrant at least a lossless 5.1 encode.

I would suggest to Warners that all their movie releases on Blu-Ray include a lossless audio encode in either Dolby True HD or DTS HD Master Audio. Lack of disc space should not be an issue. All major releases should be issued on a 50GB disc which would have more than enough space for a lossless track. Any 3D version of a film should have its own separate disc to insure the inclusion of a lossless track. Given the premium prices being asked for Blu-ray releases, they should include not only the best video presentations but the best audio presentations as well. Standard DVD just does not cut it.
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Old 10-23-2008, 12:04 PM
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Wait, Journey does not have HD audio? <Crosses off to get list>

It seems like they are only putting HD audio on the top releases like Batman and The Matrix.
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Old 10-23-2008, 12:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bases1616 View Post
Here is a nice article I copied from www.tvpredictions.com. It has some good points about the lack of lossless audio on titles like Speed Racer and Journey to the Center of the Earth.

Amazingly, a film like Run Fat Boy Run, issued by Warner Brothers via their New Line subsidiary, was not only issued with a DTS HD Master Audio track, but a 7.1 track to boot. While I enjoyed Run Fatboy Run, it did miniscule box office compared to either Speed Racer or Journey to the Center of the Earth. If Run Fatboy Run warranted a 7.1 lossless track, it is really hard to argue that Speed Racer and Journey to the Center of the Earth didnít warrant at least a lossless 5.1 encode.
Run, Fat Boy, Run was given a DTS-HD MA 7.1 track because it was, originally, a New Line Cinema release (all New Line BD releases have either 7.1 or 5.1 DTS-HD MA tracks). I don't expect New Line to continue this trend, but it'd be nice if Warner just let them go and do their own thing.

I don't know if it's because of licensing issues, but Warner Bros only seems to add a lossless soundtrack for high grossing movies only, and I don't expect this to change any time soon.

Last edited by Liqwid; 10-23-2008 at 01:08 PM.
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Old 10-23-2008, 12:38 PM
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Lossy Dolby Digital tracks from Warner's BDs are 640kbs. The max bit rate available for Dolby Digital BD audio. The DVDs have 448kbs DD audio, the max bit rate allowed.

So you are getting "high-definition" sound from a Blu-ray Disc compared to the DVD.

Okay, so Sex and the City has a Dolby TrueHD track as does the upcoming Dumb and Dumber & The Mask. But Warner is not one to always choose lossless sound on BD discs: Get Smart is 640kbs Dolby Digital 5.1 and so is Mongol.
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Old 10-23-2008, 12:53 PM
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Wait...Get Smart is only dd 5.1? That sucks!
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Old 10-23-2008, 01:04 PM
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New Line release Mongol is also DD 5.1 as well for the U.S. while import has DTS-HD MA.
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Old 10-23-2008, 01:57 PM
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well Warner has improved in some sense.
look at all of these recent titles that have lossless:

The Gauntlet
Pale Rider
L.A Confidential
Body Heat


hopefully we will reach the end of the lossy releases very soon.
in a way it has almost seems completely random what releases get lossless.
although I have no idea why "Speed Racer" didn't get lossless unless they specifically were preparing a double-dip.
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Old 10-23-2008, 02:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arkadin View Post
well Warner has improved in some sense.
look at all of these recent titles that have lossless:

The Gauntlet
Pale Rider
L.A Confidential
Body Heat


hopefully we will reach the end of the lossy releases very soon.
in a way it has almost seemed completely random.
although I have no idea why "Speed Racer" didn't get lossless unless they specifically were preparing a double-dip.
No improvement at all in my eyes, same old catalog releases or titles that don't need lossless audio as much as other releases. Speed Racer, Journey To The Center Of The Earth, Get Smart not having lossless audio is a real shame.
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Old 10-23-2008, 02:07 PM
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well I agree with that.
has there ever been a confirmation that Warner stated that they would only be offering lossless after a certain point?
seems like Bill *unt would find out the deal and announce it to everyone.
btw: as far as "older" titles not benefitting as much, many probably benefit more actually.
Look everybody wants the movies they like to have lossless.
Am I glad that "L.A Confidential" and "Pale Rider" have it over that total crapfest "Journey to the center of the earth"?
hell yes, if it had to be one or the other.
but that's just my movie tastes.
I like older classic movies more than current fare.
But I know you are the opposite, and I respect that.
we both agree--ALL titles should have lossless.
the end.

Last edited by Arkadin; 10-23-2008 at 06:04 PM.
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Old 10-23-2008, 04:24 PM
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bill hunt's confirmation was that CATALOG titles would get lossless audio. new releases are a case by case basis. you know why? DOUBLE DIP when the new releases become old enough to be catalog titles.
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