Coming to America: Superior PQ is on HD DVD - High-Def Digest Forums
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Old 05-31-2007, 11:04 PM
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Default Coming to America: Superior PQ is on HD DVD

http://www.hometheaterspot.com/fusio...php?tid/137356

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Coming to America is being released by Paramount on both HD DVD and Blu-ray on June 5, keeping their neutral status in the Hi-Def wars. On the video side, the discs are presented in two different encodes, HD DVD is released with a 1080p VC-1 encode, while the Blu-ray has an AVC/MPEG-4 1080p encode. While generally Paramount releases have looked very similar, regardless of the encode, the case is not the same with this release.

Of the two releases, I preferred the look of the VC-1 encoded HD DVD to the BD for a number of reasons. First, the VC-1 transfer was much sharper than the AVC encode on the Blu-ray Disc with the fine detail in the foreground and background having more detail. Second, the color saturation was much richer and more satisfying to the eyes. The only negative on the VC-1 transfer was that there was some noise in some solid objects in the background, specifically on some painted walls. This has the classic look of compression issues, and that may be the culprit here.

To compare the titles, I watched ½ of the movie on HD DVD and ½ of the movie on BD, but I would switch between the discs about every 4 chapters or so. My wife was doing laundry the night we watched the movie, so when she would leave the room, I would change between the players. We started the movie on HD DVD and when I made the transition to the BD version, she noticed something was amiss as soon as she sat back down and questioned “what did I do to the picture?” I played dumb and we continued to watch the movie. About 25 minutes later, she left the room again and I switched back to HD DVD. When she came back in again, she commented that “whatever I did when she was gone, it looks much better now”. I had noticed the same thing, but kept my mouth shut. The last change back to the BD disc she was in the room and she finally figured out what I was doing and commented “Wow, normally they look exactly the same!”

Granted, it isn’t as if the Blu-ray looks bad, but it just doesn’t look as good as the HD DVD does, which is why I am scoring them differently. If you didn’t have to two to compare against side by side, you would think that each of them looks just fine, but I have the benefit of being able to go back and forth between the two formats. The Blu-ray release lacks the “pop” that the HD DVD has but lacks some of the compression issues on the HD DVD. But when you take everything together, the HD DVD has a more refined look to it in comparison.
But I always hear from Blu-ray fanboys how AVC with a high bitrate is better than a low bitrate VC-1 transfer...what happened here?

BTW, I remember hearing that Sony were doing the encoding for Paramount's Blu-ray releases, was it ever confirmed?

Last edited by The Main Event; 05-31-2007 at 11:09 PM.
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Old 05-31-2007, 11:05 PM
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Where is this review from?
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Old 05-31-2007, 11:08 PM
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My thoughts exactly. Link?
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Old 05-31-2007, 11:10 PM
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Completely forget the link...from Home Theater Spot...now added
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Old 05-31-2007, 11:12 PM
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Do we even know if the AVC encode has a higher bitrate?

EDIT: Oh hey what a surprise: The BD version of Coming to America comes on a BD-25... not a BD-50.
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Old 05-31-2007, 11:15 PM
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I don't care about reviews, most downplay the superior PQ of BLU-RAY discs, for whatever reason many sites are pro hd-dvd? I think both hd-dvd and BLU-RAY look great, but I think BLU-RAY is greater.
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Old 05-31-2007, 11:17 PM
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must be a conspiracy against your personal opinion
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Old 05-31-2007, 11:17 PM
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Its just one review, one title, and one opinion. I far as I recalled, this is the first title VC-1 comes out on top when compared with AVC. This is probably due to the fact that Paramount decided to use BD-25 disc on this release. The AVC encode was compromised surely because of this. The VC-1 encode had 5 GB extra to work with. If they had use a BD-50 disc, it would be a totally different story.

Last edited by Balian; 05-31-2007 at 11:19 PM.
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Old 05-31-2007, 11:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Indy_aka_Rex View Post
Do we even know if the AVC encode has a higher bitrate?

EDIT: Oh hey what a surprise: The BD version of Coming to America comes on a BD-25... not a BD-50.
This is a definite NO BUY for me.
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Old 05-31-2007, 11:58 PM
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What are we still trying to prove - that the formats are both good?

Have we not done this before?
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