I was really hoping that these bonus features ported over from the old DVDs would be slightly better quality due to compression. I never expected them to be worse. Waste of bloody money. I only purchased the UHD box set for the features and EP 9, as i will never watch the prequels. I wish i’d gone with my original plan and cancelled the box set when i ordered months ago and waited for the individual episodes to be released on UHD over here.
EDIT: Just checked “Anatomy of a Dewback” & ROTS’s “Within a Minute” features and both are 4:3 , jaggedy mess letterbox, the same as “The Beginning” . But ROTS’s “The journey” is 16:9 anamorphic but still suffers with the interlacing jaggedy mess issues
I had a look at the old and new versions of ANATOMY OF A DEWBACK and THE BEGINNING. The former is on the 2011 box set and the latter is on the 2001 TPM DVD.
ANATOMY OF A DEWBACK:
Aspect ratios are both wrong, 4:3 with silly wee widescreen box in the middle, though the 2011 one has the frame more squished horizontally than the 2020 one does. The two encodes have different scanline arrangements (2011 is interlaced, 2020 uses interleaved fields); I’m wondering if that’s something to do with why 2020 one has significant interlacing artefacts, but 2011 doesn’t. They both have artefacts, I mean, but the 2020 one is much worse in places. There’s a bit around the 12 second mark where a rope is swinging about, bobbing up and down, and in the 2011 it seems VLC can de-interlaced it reasonably acceptably but the 2020 one just seems not to improve regardless of interlacing being on or off, which makes me think it’s the interleaved rather than interlaced video causing the issue to at least some extent.
Old NTSC DVD from 2001 is not exactly amazing but is 16:9 full widescreen (1.78:1) and can be deinterlaced reasonably well.
New Blu-ray from 2020 is an absolute jaggy nightmare, much worse than either version of Anatomy of a Dewback and worse than it appears even on YouTube. It’s also got the same stupid 4:3-with-16:9-inside-that aspect ratio like both versions of AoaD. Again, this has interleaved fields instead of standard interlaced field layout.
Notice the incredibly bad aliasing on the nose in the bottom screenshot here, for example: