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Bladez636

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Join date
6-Aug-2011
Last activity
25-Feb-2020
Posts
31

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Post
#1324526
Topic
Star Fleet/X-Bomber (1980) Remastered Edition
Time

Oldfan said:

How this coming along? Any news to share?

Not much to share. Right now, it’s been mostly a practice in masochism with a few payoffs.

One thing I recently managed to complete was an attempt to extend the scene of the volcano exploding in Episode 8 from varied masters (Episode 13 and the Japanese master) while making it match the quality of the French masters. It consisted primarily of me going frame by frame in Photoshop to match it (15 extended frames which took from late November to late last month). I will probably post a mediafire link of it at some point for some input - I think it came out well, but don’t think I can do much better on it though. (Edit: link)

Post
#1298864
Topic
Star Fleet/X-Bomber (1980) Remastered Edition
Time

Not many updates. Still working on cleaning the next episode preview scenes. I may have figured something out but don’t want to say anything before getting further along. I need to take breaks from this project sometimes otherwise my brains will blow out all over the wall.

I have kind of a request here. Does anybody following this project happen to speak Japanese? I found this on Twitter: https://twitter.com/fuu_cyodenji/status/1001206491020316672

I’ve been trying to clean up the Japanese sound track of the series as well; except it’s pretty impossible because of how bad the audio is. I was wondering if these VHS captures are of any clearer audio quality? It’s a stretch considering these would have to be almost 40 years old, but then again, is it? “Dragon Ball Z” has a similar situation where all the DVD and Blu-Ray soundtracks of the Japanese version sound like crap due to Toei canning the original tapes, but fan VHS captures of the original broadcasts being significantly cleaner. Inquiring about it is kind of an impossibility on my part because of the language barrier.

Post
#1276351
Topic
Star Fleet/X-Bomber (1980) Remastered Edition
Time

Oldfan said:

Well I caved in and bought the new US blu-ray release in SD. Both the English and original Japanese episodes look pretty dreadful. I mean really bad. I’m not sure if it’s better or worse than the UK set, but they’re all bad. The motion on the new blu-ray is particularly problematic. I wouldn’t be shocked if I learned they transferred them from the PAL tapes. The motion is really odd, and the image is very blurred in general, with very bad aliasing. I think the French set is the only worthwhile set, but sadly of course it’s not in English, and rather pricey now I think.

I do like that the original Japanese episodes are included, and they do look different than the English episodes (slightly different aspect ratio and colors), but neither is particularly watchable.

I really expected nothing less tbh. I bought it too just for the sub aspect since I plan to do a separate remaster of the Japanese version.

The master Discotek used is the same as the UK DVD, except… worse. I think it’s an early version that Fabulous Films had initially done (The UK DVD was originally slated for a fall 2008 release before they delayed it to its February 2009 release; I speculate they weren’t satisfied and did further editing). The audio on all Episodes after the 9th are worse than the UK DVD (especially Episode 11), though they’re definitely the same audio masters - FF did some lowpass filter cleanup to them. The intro and end credits on the US DVD are taken from the 8th Episode (you can see the opening shot of X-Bomber through the interlacing on some episodes). The UK DVD similarly transplants the opening and ending from Episode 8 but with some color correction, plus the respective intro audio is left intact rather than transplanted like the US DVD.

Could be that Enoki or Fabulous Films accidentally, or purposely, sent them this inferior master. It’s pretty common for Japanese distributors to screw over American releases to curb reverse importing. FWIW I really don’t think Discotek did these edits, because I follow a lot of their video editors on twitter, and they’re pretty competent in what they do. Yet, I really don’t think Discotek sees this show as a particular “best seller” and didn’t put a whole lot of work into it; their releases of the show are pretty bare bones.

Of course, the PAL version is going to be better since PAL holds more resolution; but it’s still the same bad looking 3rd or 4th Generation 16mm master but minorly improved. Discotek really could only interlace the dub to 29fps in order for the disc to be playable on most American players (not all have PAL compatibility, region locked or not, which there’s 0 excuse for in this day and age). The Japanese version is slightly better, but it’s washed out with a cyan hue to all of the episodes; all I can really say is that it’s really more use to my project than the UK DVD. I think it’s a 2nd or 3rd generation print; it’s still fairly sharp unlike the US DVD. With some contrast upping and color correction, it looks presentable with the French footage, which is more than I can say about the UK DVD. Knowing Japan’s piss poor record of preservation; I’m in no way certain the original masters for the show even exist anymore.

The French DVD is by far, the best out there, but it’s missing some bits present in the English/Japanese versions; thus this Herculean pain in the ass project since the Japanese and UK DVD’s are my only other sources to fill in those gaps.

Post
#1268023
Topic
Star Fleet/X-Bomber (1980) Remastered Edition
Time

Sorry for not having many updates; there’s not too much.

I’ve gone about trying to fix a weird glitch the French DVD’s occasionally have. There’s a pixelization glitch that happens in some episodes (to my knowledge, mainly Episodes 4, 15 and 21 and probably a couple others) were for a brief period a single frame will pixelate every few seconds. It typically only happens for a few seconds to a minute. The worst one is in Episode 4; the others took me a while to actually notice. It happens during the Dai-X launch sequence, so with stock footage from other episodes I’ve been fixing it using Photoshop and Premiere to match the colors (it would be just easier to just use the even further matted stock footage, but that would be too simple and apparently I don’t like that).

Here’s an example, original on the top; fixed on the bottom.

If I do the others I mentioned, that will be trickier since I could only use the less crisp and washed out Japanese masters which would stick out more, but I’ll give it a try.

I’m sorry it’s taking so long, I want everything to be perfect and it’s all a learning curve. One thing that will help get my remaster out sooner; Discotek Media is now releasing the series on Blu-Ray (standard definition only unfortunately) but with the Japanese version included as well. This helps as we will finally have the entire Japanese version subtitled into English at last so I won’t have to delay the release further finding and/or paying for a translator. Doubtlessly the master of the English version will be the same as the DVD, and the Japanese one likely the same as the 2013 “Remaster” DVD. I don’t see Enoki Films giving them a superior master than their own since that would encourage reverse importing, but we’ll see.

Post
#1239335
Topic
Star Fleet/X-Bomber (1980) Remastered Edition
Time

I finally have some updates.

First and foremost, I finally got to figuring out MWilson’s avisynth script and it made a world of difference. Many thanks to him for sending me the necessary stuff.

Now onto color correction; I need to contact a friend of mine who’s more adept at avisynth than I am (I’m pretty illiterate at it) and help me with color matching to the Japanese masters. Adobe Premiere’s inbuilt color correction plugins are not cutting it.

Lastly, I did a redo of my old audio cleanups from 2012. The original cleanups I did were poor, mainly consisting of running the audio through the lowpass filter in Audacity to make the hiss less noticeable; this resulted in much of the audios clarity being ruined. This time I used a combination of Adobe Audition and Audacity and careful attention to the audio; since noise reduction is destructive. I was also able to use Discotek’s US DVD release to fill in the premature cuts on the UK DVD Audio (which I found while editing, was of generally better quality than Discotek’s). Some episode results came out better than others.

My original attempt also utilized VHS transfers to clean up audio glitches and used VHS audio primarily for Episode 24 (which has a sort of muffled problem on the DVD where the lower audio was lower and higher audio was higher) along with the audio from the episode off “Space Quest for F-01” on the Japanese DVD. I got these transfers offline and they have since disappeared due to rapidshare dying. So this time I bought the necessary US VHS Tapes off eBay & Amazon and got a VHS to DVD program to capture the audio. I’m happy to say that the results came out better than I thought they would. I go more in depth about it on the SFXB forums.

It’s getting somewhere now.

Post
#1183829
Topic
Star Fleet/X-Bomber (1980) Remastered Edition
Time

MWilson said:

Video Comparison
pass: ot
I have the settings fairly high, probably too high, so I’ve made this function where you can adjust the settings (per clip if you need to). And yes, the name is a pun 😃

function msx(clip y, float “ls”, float “cs”, float “lt”, float “ct”)
{### © MWilson
ls=Default (ls,127/3)
cs=Default(cs,96/3)
lt=Default(lt,3)
ct=Default(ct,2)

y=y.converttoyv12()
a=y.hqdn3d(ls,cs,lt,ct)
b=y.FlipHorizontal().hqdn3d(ls,cs,lt,ct).FlipHorizontal()
c=y.FlipVertical().hqdn3d(ls,cs,lt,ct).FlipVertical()
mt_makediff(a,y,y=3,u=3,v=3)
mt_makediff(y,last,y=3,u=3,v=3)
d=last
mt_makediff(b,y,y=3,u=3,v=3)
mt_makediff(d,last,y=3,u=3,v=3)
e=last
mt_makediff(c,y,y=3,u=3,v=3)
mt_makediff(e,last,y=3,u=3,v=3)
f=last
av=mt_average(f,y,y=3,u=3,v=3)
return av
}

What did you do this on? virtualdub/avisynth?

Post
#1180982
Topic
Star Fleet/X-Bomber (1980) Remastered Edition
Time

MWilson said:

I fiddled around a bit with the mpg.
Comparison 1
Comparison 2

It looks better in motion. 😃

The sharpness looks a lot better, my only gripes is that it sort of ramps up the exposure (another issue I’m struggling with). Also, I’m not sure if you used any noise reduction filters, but I’d rather the grain stay considering that I’m working primarily with pretty grainy footage (as a result I’m adding some artificial grain to some results so they don’t look too out of place.)

Either way, very good result, I’d like to see the result in motion.

Post
#1162031
Topic
Star Fleet/X-Bomber (1980) Remastered Edition
Time

Hi everybody,

To be honest, there’s been no real progress, for varied reasons. One is having found steady employment, another is focus on other projects, but mainly indecision.

This popped up in April of last year on the sfxb forums; http://www.xbomber.co.uk/forum/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=1332

To put it short; somebody got ahold of 16mm reels of the Japanese version, wanting to do an HD remaster of his own. I’m not stopping my own project, if anything I’ve wanted his help so I could possibly clean up some scenes for my project - but he hasn’t posted since.

Many will likely be disappointed that my project is staying at standard definition (576p PAL) because I don’t have access to anything HD for it - not to mention; the Japanese version has text over scenes that the dub doesn’t, and I’m having a hard enough time trying to color-correct / clean up the scenes from the UK DVD to look presentable to even standard quality.

I don’t think there’s any miracles that can be pulled here, but I want to ask for some advice on if there’s anything I can do to these scenes to make them look better? (color correction aside) Or if anybody wants to do their own tinkering with these; http://www.mediafire.com/file/yh1c6o6qobk9z31/sfxb-16mm-clips.mpg

Don’t know if that’s against terms to share that, but it’s just a compilation of all (or pretty much all) the scenes I have to utilize off the UK DVD’s poor quality transfers.

Post
#1084811
Topic
Aladdin and the Wonderful Lamp (1982) - collection project and info hunt
Time

I want to ask, I’m trying to do some research on this movie for a wiki project I run. For the Samuel Goldwyn Dub, anywhere does it credit what the web claims to be the main cast (Chris Atkins, Kristy McNichol, John Carradine and June Lockhart) because I looked up the video of this dub on YouTube and they’re not credited on the end credits.

Only these names:
Ardwight Chamberlain, Jan Rabson, Mike Reynolds, Ted Lehmann, Patty Foley & John Hostetter

The first part with the opening credits is cut off so I can’t tell if they just credited them at the beginning or not (which would be understandable with bigger names, but why no end credit either?). Listening to the villain character, I can buy it’s John Carradine but the fact that I don’t see any reliable sources is telling me that it might just be rubbish.

Post
#1055651
Topic
Star Fleet/X-Bomber (1980) Remastered Edition
Time

Oldfan said:

Thanks very much for that review. I was wondering when this was going to get released. I’m rather disappointed by the news honestly. I was hoping it would have been closer to the French masters. I already own the UK set, so now I’m wondering what to do. I’d certainly appreciate the NTSC, but with the image itself looking no better, I wonder if it’s worth the money. It sounds like your presentation will likely be the best presentation when it is finished. I have a 55" 4k TV, and a good DVD can still look outstanding on it upscaled. More compressed videos like avi can definitely be more of an issue for my TV, with compression artifacts being much more apparent. Since you are of course re-encoding these, I wonder how much compression will factor in?

If they had used the French masters I would have pounced on this official release.

I was hoping more that it would offer more to my project. My remaster at this point is probably as good as it’s going to look. The scenes that come from the UK DVD I enhanced, but still stand out pretty bad compared to the sharpness of the French and Japanese DVD masters.

My rips are m4v and ripped in Handbrake, most approximately at 600-800MB. I don’t notice any differences, whatever loss is minimal and whatever problems on my videos are also present on the DVD. The reason they’re not MPEG, I don’t know why but most free rippers for Mac are such a pain and don’t offer MPEG as a ripping option. I’ve previously had them as avi’s and later converted to mp4 when I had to switch from Windows to Mac. As my eye for quality and better understanding of framerates evolved when working on this, I re-ripped them back in 2015. If you’d like, I can send you the raw MPEG 8 minute test render I did of episode 1 last year to see if it holds up for you. Just PM me for it.

Post
#1052202
Topic
Star Fleet/X-Bomber (1980) Remastered Edition
Time

I just got Discotek’s release today. And it’s really as I expected; the quality is about the same as the UK DVD. There are a couple differences though;

-The intro and end credits are grittier looking. I think the UK DVD may have actually touched the intro and end up. It was always clear to me though that they copy/pasted the same version of the intro/end to every episode on the UK DVD. Here they look unaltered, or more like how they looked on the “Space Quest for F-01” credits did on the Japanese DVD.
-The commerical intermission frames with the “Star Fleet” logo are intact.


Other than that, Discotek’s masters are pretty much indistinguishable from the UK DVD apart from being NTSC, with the same fuzziness, color grading problems and brief audio cutouts. What I am grateful for is that the editors didn’t slow the footage down to 24fps, which was my biggest fear. It’s interlaced to 30fps which is proper procedure, keeping the speed/pitch. When things get slowed or sped up like that, that makes it about unwatchable for me, with few exceptions.

The menus are nice, but nothing to write home about compared to the UK release. There are no extras except for the “Making of” Special on the last disc. They should’ve at least included the Brian May music video. Then again, there’s probably some royalties to be paid in including that…

Am I disappointed? No, I’m really quite happy that we finally got a release at all. It’s been 8 years since the UK got it, so it’s about bloody time. I’ve never found these transfers at all unwatchable. They’re just subpar.

So, if it’s not already clear, the French DVD is still the best quality out there. With that said, the remastering project goes on…

I’m just about done with the project, but there are a few things I need to do. Waiting for this DVD release we can cross off that list. I need to get my burn drive fixed for one, and find someone who could do an S-VHS transfer for a UK Star Fleet VHS I got my hands on (the Thorn EMI one with Episodes 4 & 5). The thing about the UK VHS tapes is that they clearly came off of 35mm transfers rather than the 16mm ones that the TV airings and DVDs came off. It may be for absolutely nothing because for all I know, the tape could look awful.

Post
#956487
Topic
Star Fleet/X-Bomber (1980) Remastered Edition
Time

Oldfan said:

Good news that it’s getting a US release later. But don’t let that discourage you. We have no idea what they will use for masters, compression, etc., so we have no idea how it will look. Hopefully they will do a great job but I’m still looking forward to your release.

I have no plans on giving up. We’ll just say this is the PAL Remastered edition then. Even so, if Discotek remasters it, I’m doubtful it’s going to be the same as the French remaster since they have to get their materials from Japan (at least that was what was mentioned in the fandompost posting.)

I hope that it’s still a step up from the UK, because then I can purge the atrocious looking color correction attempts from the project. Here are some samples of ones that I’m particularly disappointed with the results. Originals are on the left




Even as someone who’s overly harsh on himself, even I know I cannot take the blame for the final results here. I can only do so much to those blurry looking and badly colored shots, and they end up sticking out with the much sharper looking masters from the French and Japanese DVDs.

Post
#938029
Topic
Star Fleet/X-Bomber (1980) Remastered Edition
Time

Oldfan said:

Interesting. The overscan is unfortunate, but not a big deal when you take into account how much better the quality is. Keep up the good work! I know these projects must seem daunting and I can’t imagine how time consuming they must be.

Pretty consuming. I remember when starting this I thought I’d be done in months. Hell, if that were the case you’d get an avi quality product with incorrect/overly blue toned next episode preview scenes and Premiere’s crappy built in noise reduction effects.

I also plan on doing the original Japanese episodes separately. I could edit them to sync wih the English dub, but that would require audio butchering (the Japanese version was 24fps which would require a speedup to 25fps) and re-editing (Japanese version and English don’t use the same opening/closing plus there’s some minor scenes cut from Episode 8) something I’m OCD about. Wouldn’t take much more work really, though. I’m in the process of cleaning the Japanese audio, which has a strong hiss and a lot of film crackle to it. The English audio was a lot more simple in that the hiss was easier to get rid of with a simple lowpass filter (which it needed since the treble was strongest).

Post
#930153
Topic
Star Fleet/X-Bomber (1980) Remastered Edition
Time

Sorry for lack of updates. School takes up time, as well as my roller coaster of depression. I haven’t posted as many updates as I had hoped when I started this thread.

I’m trying to work on a portfolio page for on my webs page, though am having troubles thanks to their page limit counter having a bug - apparently 5 and 10 pages are the same thing…

I made this for it, an example of the overscan the French master has in comparison to the Japanese, which kinda sucks, but the English masters are roughly the same with overscan. It’s not like you lose anything important in this overscan, so it doesn’t bother me all that much.

Post
#901372
Topic
Star Fleet/X-Bomber (1980) Remastered Edition
Time

I don’t have a whole lot of updates to really go on. I need to take a break every now and then so I don’t lose my mind completely.

I do have a request for help though. Is anyone insterested in this project knowledgeable in virtualdub / avisynth?

I want to see if anything can be done to enhance these footage pieces from the UK DVD that I have no other choice but to use for the project.
https://www.mediafire.com/?8djg6866vkajp2o

That’s really only if anything can even be done with them to make them better looking, which I kinda doubt. All I know is with Premiere Pro, I can’t do much else but sharpen and “color correct” (I put that it in quotations because most of them only end up looking mediocre, usually due to the bad exposure of these clips.)

I’ve tried using virtualdub, and can’t get it to even import due to its limited file types.

On another note, I mentioned a long time ago that I was going to be using DNR. Well, don’t worry about that anymore, because it takes learning to realize the repercussions of that. It’s a bigger pain in the arse than it’s worth. I will use it to reduce grain in some of the really grainy episodes, but that’s about it.

Post
#793023
Topic
Star Fleet/X-Bomber (1980) Remastered Edition
Time

I want to give an update.

My Macbook is giving me troubles. Given it's still running, I don't think I'll be losing anything, but I still need to take it in. I suspect them to be RAM issues, the symptoms seem indicative of that, but I'm not an Apple Genius.

Anyhow, the project is on hold again. But no worries, I do have the project files I've updated up to this point and video files backed up on flash drives. Other stuff such as audio and my frame by frame remasters are on mediafire too.

So sorry this just seems to continue and continue. This whole thing is really a learning curb, the more I continue, the more I learn about video editing. If I released this to the specifications I understood back in 2012/2013, videophiles would be slaughtering me.~Bladez

Post
#782612
Topic
Star Fleet/X-Bomber (1980) Remastered Edition
Time

Sorry if things seem inactive. I've been busy both with work and I've been remastering under the hood, not updating much about it.

Most work goes into reinstating and color correcting the "Next Episode" sequences, which weren't present on the French version. I've been working mainly in converting and cleaning the versions on the Japanese DVD from NTSC to PAL. Unfortunately, the first and last scene on those versions are always covered by large Japanese text and thus not usable for my project. Episodes give varied results, but mostly look awful... Here's an example of what I mean; https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5GwJgHUcGps

Post
#758272
Topic
Star Fleet/X-Bomber (1980) Remastered Edition
Time

I recently replaced my files of the French DVD's from mp4 to m4v, because it's much better quality (and oddly enough, some take up less space than before). But that means I kind of have to start over in some ways (really adjusting each Premiere file accordingly). I initially ripped the files I had been using in Mac DVD RipperX which worked alright, but like a twat, I ripped the PAL DVD's in a NTSC framerate (29fps); while they looked fine with no ghosting or pulldown, at least that I noticed, I still felt the need to redo the ripping.

The farther I go into this project, the more I learn and am constantly making adjustments.

Post
#756892
Topic
Star Fleet/X-Bomber (1980) Remastered Edition
Time

It's coming along. It's just a long and tedious process, made even longer by real life matters. Right now, I haven't been working on it as much as I ought to, but by no means have I dropped it, nor do I plan to do so.
I'm trying to find better ways to make the small bits from the UK DVD I have to use in parts of the "next episode of Star Fleet" sequences, look better. I can probably only make them look so good because they're very rusty/unsharp 16mm transfers.

Post
#733758
Topic
Star Fleet/X-Bomber (1980) Remastered Edition
Time

Star Fleet Remastering Project: Side-by-Side Comparison

An update after a while. Simply just a comparison video. All I can say is patience is a virtue, and in the long run, the wait has been somewhat helpful since some scenes I didn't have access to in higher quality at first have surfaced (mainly the Dai-X raising its arms in the opening and ending credits; thanks to the 2013 Japanese DVD which included an unaired pilot featuring that scene, I've got it in better quality rather than having a fruitless attempt at trying to make the 16mm DVD footage look better, an example of that is visible on one scene in the video).

Post
#706351
Topic
Dick Spanner PI ('The Case Of The Human Cannonball' & 'The Case Of The Maltese Parrot')
Time

You might be interested in seeing this. It looks like One Media uploaded the original 5 minute episodes in their original 4:3 format and with the original music and title cards!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iehxeWlwh44

I really hope it signals a new release on DVD, or failing that an online download... If only they released these original versions on DVD in the first place instead of putting needlessly wasted effort onto re-editing the show.

Post
#706104
Topic
Star Fleet/X-Bomber (1980) Remastered Edition
Time

Oldfan said:

I discovered another DVD set of this series I didn’t know existed. It was released last year I believe in Japan, by Bandai:

http://www.play-asia.com/x-bomber-aka-star-fleet-also-bomber-x-remaster-dvd-box-paOS-13-49-en-70-66ld.html

http://sgcafe.com/2012/11/1980s-sf-puppet-show-x-bomber-remastered-on-dvd/?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

I’ve seen a rip of one of those remastered episodes and they aren’t what I would call remastered - apparently there were some serious issues with how they handled motion - I believe they used field blending from what I’ve read. The color leans heavily towards green. There does seem to be some good detail though. The French remasters look far better from some rips I’ve seen, though they tend to be darker too - maybe a tad too dark - a lot of the shadow detail is hidden in blacks in the French remaster, but clearly visible in the Bandai remasters. I still believe the French DVDs look the best - they certainly have the best color. I’ve only seen rips of the French DVDs, not full DVDs, so it’s hard to compare detail levels. The motion seems excellent in the rips I’ve seen.

I’d be watching these on a 46" screen though and I fear rips won’t hold up so well - just watching the rips I’ve seen on my 46" shows a lot of pixellation from the .avi compression. Full DVDs hold up a lot better, especially when upconverted by my player.

I was aware of such a set, and really I can say it’s not really remastered apart from them cleaning up a little bit of the footage. There was a 2004 DVD release of the Japanese series, and the quality doesn’t differ much. There’s only a couple differences; the intro is definitely remastered in the 2013 version because it’s much sharper and clean looking. They also re-edited the titles back into the episodes, they weren’t present in the 2004 version, excluding Episode 18 for whatever reason. I’m guessing they used a broadcast master for that one. I don’t know why, but the Japanese version has a very blue tone to it really. I really wonder why. Either way, the Japanese version is still better quality than the English one…

The one thing I can see that is in any real remastered quality on the 2013 DVD set is a pilot that nobody in the fan base had any idea was in existence. You can find it on YouTube or download it on xbomber.co.uk

It really depends what rips you were watching really. If it was on YouTube, then say no more, because YouTube compresses the hell out of every standard quality video. I’m using high quality mp4 rips for my project and I don’t really see anything wrong with the quality that wasn’t already on the DVD.

Here’s a screenshot I used on my Mac in fullscreen and I think it still holds up. I will be rendering the final project in mpg.

Post
#705918
Topic
Star Fleet/X-Bomber (1980) Remastered Edition
Time

Oldfan said:

Okay, sounds good. Definitely looking forward to this one. A great series. I own the UK DVD set but it's a shame they look so bad compared to the remastered versions.

The UK version to my knowledge was always kept on 16mm prints which explains the quality. Plus the masters being left alone for near 20 years probably didn't help the quality. Compared to the VHS rips that have been online, the quality doesn't differ that much, just the DVD masters look better only since they don't have VHS compression and the usual issues with tracking etc.

The main thing that bugs me with the UK version is the inconsistency with the tones. Like one episode will have an orange-ish tone to it while another one will have a blue-ish or neutral color balance to it.