Never thought anything good could come out of this bantha poodoo year! Congrats on getting a scanner. I hope you’ll take a photo or two of it so people can see what one of these beasts looks like.
Thank you, I will definitely take a photo or two!
In fact, I was “lucky” to be fired by my employer during the Covid-related confinement, and he was ordered to pay me large severance pay.
So, in agreement with my wife (obviously), I decided to have fun with this money, in order to turn this ordeal into something positive! But it becomes clear that the Phantom Menace is an expensive adventure 😃
Here’s some news, more than a year after the start of the project …
The Parisian laboratory in charge of scanning the entire film in 4k, under professional conditions, showed a lot of slowness and encountered a lot of problems … until it was closed and unable to continue working because of the Covid-19.
As a result, at the time of writing, only one of the 7 reels has been partially scanned… and it took more than one year to achieve this weak result.
So I decided to resume scanning myself, and I just ordered a Retroscan Mark-II scanner which seems to give very good results on a fairly competitive price.
The scanner is expected to be shipped within the next couple of months, so it can be reasonably expected that everything will be scanned and shared here by the end of 2020.
My apologies for the time this all takes. It is a beautiful adventure, strewn with pitfalls!
At the same time, I’m continuing the despecialized version. A v1 was made but I prefer not to share it and wait until I have the full 35mm scan to integrate the despecialized scenes in better quality.
Thank you, that looks very nice!
Thanks Schorman, your opinion is, as always, valuable!
I feel the same about US and original Japanese, but I don’t have (yet) the 2000 re-release. I’ll get it in a couple of days.
About the IRE, the Japanese releases are just perfect on a Japanese player (such as the HLD-X0).
For the US releases, I set the flag “Assume NTSC pedestal” to 1 on my ADV-EVAL7842, it seems to be more accurate than using the D-EXT button of the LD player (I read somewhere that the D-EXT button works in the analog domain, and crushes the blacks). Am I doing right?
A big thank you for all your answers !
I was not at all aware that the Japanese edition of November 2000 had benefited from a better quality… I learn every day on this forum!
So I ordered this Japanese edition from November 2000, and I will capture it meticulously.
Anyway, about color accuracy, I think that the TB version is by far the most accurate we can get.
Do you have an opinion on CLD-D925 vs. LD V4300D? I can’t seem to have a clear opinion about this question…
As some members have asked me after my preservation of TPM laserdiscs, I am currently working on a preservation of the laserdiscs of the Special Edition (1997).
For now, I have planned to preserve and then merge the following versions that I have at home:
- NTSC US (done: average of 3 captures)
- PAL UK (ongoing: average of 3 captures)
- NTSC JP
- PAL FR (English version or French version)
But I have some questions for LD specialists:
- Are there other laserdiscs of the SE97 worthy of interest (with better quality, SuperNTSC, different bonuses, different audio tracks, CC…)? I am thinking for example of the Japanese reeditions in 2000, which I do not own: do they represent a particular interest compared to the first edition?
- Is there a dolby EX 6.1 or DTS version on one of the LD versions (I don’t think so)?
- For NTSC discs, I will obviously use my Pioneer HLD-X0. But for the UK/FR PAL discs, I hesitate between the CLD-D925 and the LD-V4300D (I feel that the CLD-D925 gives more details, but also more noise - but by mixing several captures, I could reduce this noise). Your opinion?
NB: I also have a CLD-1050 which shows a very natural image with a lot of sharpness and very little noise, but there is a lot of ghosting IMHO…
What do you think ?
Thank you in advance for your advice which will allow me to offer the best possible preservation!
I feel that using deepfakes is more in the way of filming of George Lucas than Disney: Lucas has always tried to do without “living” actors in his films, and to replace them with image banks or CGI-characters that he could assemble at will during the film editing (IIRC, he speaks frankly about this wish in the bonuses of AotC).
I believe that he would probably use these deepfakes extensively in his new films if he had kept the license of SW. And the result wouldn’t be as ugly as CGI-Leia and CGI-Tarkin, nor as rambling as using Carrie Fisher’s old takes in TRoS and trying to make a story around them.
It’s certainly both scary and revolutionary, but IMHO, that’s the direction cinema will take, as inevitably as the arrival of DV twenty years ago.
This is the first time that it feels seamless to me.
If it can help to fix the awful CGI characters in Rogue One, it will be a good thing: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=byKy9kGnyvo
Deepfake technology seems to be really mature now …
I still wonder how long it took to achieve this amazing result!
There is obviously an issue with your monitor (or with its settings). The dark areas that you don’t see on your screen (as shown on you short video) ARE yet definitely present and visible on my preservation (even they are not visible on your screen).
So yes, it seems that your contrast and colors settings are doing this.
Althor made his preservation with a Diamond Theater750HD PCI-E capture card, which is known to apply automatic levels that denature the image.
So if your monitor is not correctly calibrated, maybe you won’t see the slight “shadows” on my preservation, but you’ll see them on Althor’s one, because his capture card overdid the contrasts and levels.
As a general rule, a properly calibrated monitor is needed to compare finely colors, saturation, hue, contrasts and levels.
I really don’t get what you see.
Here is a comparison of the same frame : http://www.framecompare.com/image-compare/screenshotcomparison/7KG7GNNX
1 - Althor’s preservation (your copy)
2 - My preservation
3 - the HDTV broadcast (reduced to 480p)
(Please note that I had to slightly stretch Althor’s preservation to fit the right ratio.)
IMHO, there is the same level of details and nuances in the shadows of Qui-Gon’s robe between my preservation and the HDTV broadcast (taking into account that the HDTV broadcast has a huge issue with colors and contrasts), and there is less details and nuances in Althor’s preservation, but more noise. Maybe there is an issue with your monitor.
Since I used a HLD-XO player and an ADV-7842 comb filter (while Althor used a CLD-HF9G [CLD-99] and the comb filter of the Diamond Theater750HD PCI-E capture card), it is just not possible that there are more nuances in his preservation.
Also, IIRC, the Diamond Theater750HD that Althor used has an auto-level issue (which perhaps explains why you see more contrast in its version, when it is in fact less faithful), and its comb filter is less accurate than the ADV-7842.
That said, blessed be Althor for the incredible preservation work he did on all of SW’s laserdiscs, and which today sets the gold standard. It’s just that for TPM, there was a way to do a little better with newer hardware.
Broom Kid said:
I think it might be the settings on whatever you’re viewing the rips with? I’m doing an A-B and the first cap isn’t just noisier, it’s blurrier and darker, too. Granted, it’s Laserdisc - there’s only so much detail to be found, but I don’t think the dynamic range of the image is lacking. The Phantom Menace is a pretty contrasty disc, and I’ve seen it on some monitors/TVs where the shadow detail DOES get lost and crushed. But in this case, if that’s happening, it looks like it’d be more likely to happen in Cap A than in Cap B.
For example, take a look at the difference between the shadows playing across Qui-Gon’s eyes and brow. In Cap A, they’re not only darker, but there are wrinkles under the eyes and at the corner of his mouth that get lost completely in the shadows being cast. In Cap B, you can see, even in the shadows, those wrinkles.
Could you please point exactly where you notice a loss of the shadow detail in the jedi robes ?
I just see more noise in your copy (which seems to be Althor’s one), but no loss of details. But maybe I don’t look at the right place of your screenshot.
It looks very nice, thank you!
- Will the final rendering be in 4K?
- In your previous samples, there was more sources (Puggo, 16mm…). That was very funny and I’d love to see them in this new version. Do you plan to use them ?
Mike’s live on YouTube talking about Legacy.
Thank you !
The colors are definitely more accurate than the DVD/HDTV, since they were not yet regraded by Lucasfilm. And the HLD-X0 player that I used is famous to render the colors without any artefact. But it remains a NTSC Laserdisc, so colors are never 100% accurate : Never Twice the Same Colors…
IMHO, they are a little bit too greenish. The SD captures (ORF1 and Scandinavian C+) seem to be more accurate than the Laserdisc: for the few scenes that were not regraded on the DVD, colors are 100% similar to the ORF1 SD capture.
Anyway, IIRC, the master used for the LD was taken from an interpositive, so the colors are close to a theatrical experience, but not 100% the same.
Well, then I would want to thank you once more for your work, this tool is really something great 😃
I was wondering if you do have plans on adding batch support to it and multiple threads? Like you could just make list of tests images and references to it and make them export it to LUT automatically. Could leave it overnight to do the work. I can run 8 calculations at once to hit 100% of CPU usage, but setting them up manually takes some time, so threads could be very nice thing too.
I really appriciate your hard work on this, your tool is just fantastic.
Thanks for the compliments! There may be a version with automated processing in the near future. Multithreading is not possible at this point.
Thank you (again) for this amazing software.
Did you eventually make a version with batch support (automated processing)?
I managed to get a real HD quality for the three missing scenes (arrival on Coruscant, Senate, Night on Theed) and it will be - very soon - available in the “Despecialized” TPM I’m currently finishing.
BTW, there is a little more than those three scenes (ea : the night on Tatooine, digitally shot, was totally regraded for the DVD, with additional and missing frames).
I’m really tempted to do the 97 SE LD (PAL + NTSC, so that a PaNup could achieve a nearly-HD quality). The DC and the Faces are already available in very good quality, is there an interest in recapturing them?
Chase Adams said:
The Eopie sequence is yet another reason why the prequels are secretly brilliant. George employs the use of fundamental filmmaking techniques to immerse viewers into the storytelling experience and most importantly, entertain them. Let me explain, the great filmmaker Alfred Hitchcock defined the difference between mystery in a film and suspense in a film as:
“Mystery is when the spectator knows less than the characters in the movie. Suspense is when the spectator knows more than the characters in the movie."
In the case of the Eopie, there is a distinct sense of mystery surrounding the theatrical cut of the fart. We are calmly watching Jar Jar toiling away at the pod when suddenly, he is bombarded by an overpowering odour. We are surprised by this as we had never suspected such a thing to occur beforehand.
In the extended cut of the fart, we see the Eopie from the very beginning, we watch with suspense as he snorts in agony, waiting for something to happen, we know more than Jar Jar at this point and are the only ones aware of this approaching storm.
I ask you, which is more effective?
THAT is why I love this forum 😃
Hayden Christensen made a truly credible force ghost.
@freetheworld: Plldwn refers to reversing the telecine process.
Althor1138 preserved almost every LaserDisc related to Star Wars: https://originaltrilogy.com/topic/Star-Wars-Laserdisc-Preservations-See-1st-Post-for-Updates/id/15283
IIRC, all his preservations were done by applying an inverse telecine filter (IVTC).