Captain Robert April wrote:
The final product is on film. The individual elements, i.e., the model shots in front of the bluescreen, the separate animation cels, have long since been destroyed for the most part
Don't need any separate elements, since the EFX exist on that final 35mm interpositive film and can (and have) been played with to clean up the image. You can select the resolution from film fairly easily. The initial DVD release (the two episodes per disc one) in fact did this and had everything reprocessed inclusive of EFX, and I assume that since the Blu-Ray has the original broadcast version in HD as an option that re-processing was done on the entire interpositive in a similar fashion. Whether this looks good on anyone's particular HDTV is not something I can determine.
Have you actually looked at some of TOS's VFX-shots?
They are, in part, poorly composited together - they got away with it because of the lower resolution of the then TV-sets.
But this isn't the case today anymore. The original VFX-shot just don't hold up against the live-action footage anymore at these higher resolutions.