Season TWO OFFICIAL TNG Blu-Ray Discussion Thread

Discussion in 'Star Trek: The Next Generation' started by JJ-R, Sep 5, 2012.

  1. RAMA

    RAMA Admiral Admiral

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    :guffaw:I kind of felt this way at first but I had access to more knowledge than Picard..who knew the Borg would not give off a hint of the regenerating of ship and hive.
     
  2. Lance

    Lance Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    It doesn't seem unreasonable to me. To ask, "why are the shots different?". I mean, aren't you even slightly curious as to why alternative takes have been used? I'm not fussed one way or another about the actual use of different takes, because as you rightly say the net effect on the final episode is negligible anyway. But I'd still be interested to know the story behind why they've been used over the previous ones.

    Or are you saying that any kind of interest in the way the show is put together should (for some reason) be outlawed? :wtf:
     
  3. Doug Otte

    Doug Otte Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I'm still making my way through this season, and I'm seeing more and more shots that appear to be SD resolution. I earlier mentioned the psych test inserts in The Schizoid Man. I forgot to note some subsequent examples, but last night I watched Samaritan Snare. There's a shot of Troi exiting the lift next to the main viewer and walking in front of the viewer. On the viewer, we see LaForge and the Pakleds on their ship. That shot looks SD. Is it possible that they didn't feel like re-compositing a moving shot, or couldn't find the original elements, or is it instead one of those shots using an anamorphic lens similar to the infamous shot in The Last Outpost?
     
  4. Mott the barber

    Mott the barber Commodore Commodore

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    Yeah I'm pretty sure it's technically akin to that panning shot in "The Last Outpost." Maxwell can explain it ten times better, but whenever they did a pnning shot that involved green screen type stuff, the quality (even in the HD versions) was lowered.
     
  5. NewHorizon

    NewHorizon Captain Captain

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    I'll forever wonder what a CBS-D Season 2 would have been like. :(
     
  6. Mott the barber

    Mott the barber Commodore Commodore

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    Hmm, for some reason my reply did not post, but the short of is, yes to your last post. Anytime there are shots where the camera pans across a green screen or composited shot (i.e., the viewscreen), the resolution is lower. Maxwell can go into much more technical detail.
     
  7. Savage Dragon

    Savage Dragon Savage Mod Moderator

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    ^I can see your last post. Prior to this one I mean.
     
  8. jimbotron

    jimbotron Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Also, it was a combined live-action/bluescreen shot. Pretty much every live-action shot in Season 2 that included a bluescreen element or optical effect (such as the bridge set with the viewscreen) was DNRed to hell, thanks to HTV not really knowing what they were doing.

    One of the many examples:

    Blue-screen + live-action:
    http://tng.trekcore.com/hd/albums/2x09/themeasureofaman_hd_076.jpg

    Live action only:
    http://tng.trekcore.com/hd/albums/2x09/themeasureofaman_hd_080.jpg
     
  9. Doug Otte

    Doug Otte Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Right, those differences are very jarring in the Season 2 set.

    But what I'm referring to is: the shot actually looks SD - the detail is lower, yet there's more digital noise (not smooth DNR) and w/ NTSC-like colors. I wish I could provide a screencap, but Trekcore hasn't posted that episode yet.
     
  10. Mott the barber

    Mott the barber Commodore Commodore

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    Haha, so can I now. Weird!
     
  11. Mott the barber

    Mott the barber Commodore Commodore

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    I know what you're saying. It's different than the examples posted because you're referring to when the camera is actually panning. The entire shot looks lower-res (a la "The Last Outpost" pan and the "Samaritan Snare" pan with the Pakleds on the viewscreen).
     
  12. jimbotron

    jimbotron Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    There's no SD footage in season 2, aside from minor stuff like the screen in The Schizoid Man.

    Another example of an anamorphic shot being used and artificially panned is this shot in The Child:

    http://tng.trekcore.com/hd/albums/2x01/thechild_hd_434.jpg
    http://tng.trekcore.com/hd/albums/2x01/thechild_hd_436.jpg
    http://tng.trekcore.com/hd/albums/2x01/thechild_hd_437.jpg

    It ends up looking pretty soft and barely HD, but that's an inherent flaw of the production and not HTV. Thankfully they chose NOT to artificially sharpen that shot.

    I don't think they used this technique after season 2 with the new DP.
     
  13. Mott the barber

    Mott the barber Commodore Commodore

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    Yep, another good example there.

    There's another example from S1 or 2 where they actually move the camera I want to say in 10-Forward when the ship is at warp. The rarely did panning shots with the warp stars really until ENT, at which time the technology progressed much more to properly track the stars.
     
  14. Maxwell Everett

    Maxwell Everett Commodore Commodore

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    Yeah, I think both CBS Digital and HTV's separate working practices may have combined to make that shot of Troi entering the bridge in "Samaritan Snare" and the one in "The Child" look overly soft. What they really should have done is scan all those anamorphic shots at 4K. That would have given them more than enough resolution to play with to do the digital pan.

    Unfortunately though, CBS Digital doesn't own a 4K scanner. CBS Digital owns a pair of (obsolete but still good) Spirit 2K DataCine film scanners -- so right off the bat all the film elements are being scanned at a resolution of 2048 x 1556 -- usually this is more than good enough for Blu-ray. (HTV can do 4K scanning according to their website... but I don't think CBS was interested in paying for that.)

    [​IMG]


    The area they scan is called the Full Camera Aperture and it represents the maximum image area available on the 4-perf 35mm color negative film. Normally for the show, they use what's known as the TV Transmitted Area, which in 2K would be an area about 1600 x 1200 within that 2048 x 1556. This is then essentially downconverted to 1440 x 1080 (1.33:1, 4:3) -- or in the case of HTV's work in S2, 1458 x 1080 (1.35:1). For "Sins of the Father" CBS Digital apparently cropped most shots directly to 1440 x 1080 (no downconverstion).

    And actually it's a bit more complicated than that as they are actually editing the show with as much available image area possible left and right of that TV area within a 1920 x 1080 (1.78:1, 16:9) frame (see here). They then hard matte the video with black pillar bars on the sides for Blu-ray. HTV obviously gave us slightly more than they were supposed to, resulting in VFX elements that disappear before they reach the edge of the visible frame.

    As Mott says, for this particular shot in "Samaritan Snare" they used 2x anamorphic Panavision lenses (aka CinemaScope). The anamorphic aperture is actually a slightly smaller subset of the full camera aperture (just like TV Trans.) and its corresponding resolution in 2K is 1828 x 1556 (1.17:1) -- so it has the same image height but is a bit narrower horizontally.

    Now here's what I *think* happened next: In order to correct the 2x anamorphic squeeze, they changed the scanned footage pixel proportions to 1828 x 778 (2.35:1) instead of scanning it at or scaling it up to 3656 x 1556. Notice that at 778 lines it now has less vertical resolution than the typical footage scanned and used for the show at 1080p? In fact, it only has about 72% of the vertical pixels of 1080p!

    HTV then took that footage and DNR'd it to wipe away all that pesky grain and did the intended viewscreen composite and digital pan across the frame from left to right (the available TV area at this point would be 1035 x 778). This pan also has added motion blur to simulate a real-world panned shot at 24 frames per second with a shutter speed of 1/48th of a second. That, of course, softens it even more.

    Then, the finished shot would have been upconverted back up to 1458 x 1080. But again, disclaimer here: I'm not saying that I know this is what happened, it's just my pet hypothesis. :)
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2013
  15. davejames

    davejames Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Cool interview. Unfortunately he sounds pretty doubtful about a DS9 blu-ray release, what with the incredible amount of time and money it would take just to recreate the Dominion War (let alone all the other CG effects throughout the series).

    And I can see his point. I just rewatched the DS9 pilot, and even the effects in that early episode seem lightyears more complex and sophisticated than anything they did on TNG.
     
  16. Maxwell Everett

    Maxwell Everett Commodore Commodore

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    Doing the DS9 pilot shouldn't be any more complicated than say the restoration of BOBW. It's all practical miniatures (save for some isolated CG VFX like the wormhole and Odo's morphing).
     
  17. Dream

    Dream Admiral Admiral

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    Outside of the wormhole and Odo shape shifting, only the last two seasons of DS9 were very CGI heavy with all those space battles.

    VOY would actually cost more to redo the effects, since they changed exclusively to CGI ships much sooner in the series.
     
  18. Lance

    Lance Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I've got high hopes that if they can't do the whole of DS9, they might at least be able to do a few 'select releases', a bit like how they're doing the BOBW special release. The pilot episode, maybe "Way Of The Warrior", possibly a few others.

    So even if doing the entire series proves impossible, maybe we could still see DS9 on Blu Ray? Sort of.
     
  19. FrontierTrek

    FrontierTrek Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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  20. Doug Otte

    Doug Otte Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Thanks for the screencaps. On closer inspection, it's obviously higher resolution than SD. Thanks also to Max's detailed hypothesis. With my very limited knowledge, his ideas seem reasonable and would explain the lower quality of this sequence (and others).