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Posted: 13 Sep 2017, 09:19 

Hi everyone,

I understand that the forum has been slowing down because, well, we already talked and discussed 99% of what could be said/explained on LD and LD Players over the years.

I can see that visitors are reading/searching the forum but less contributions these days, except maybe in the "technical questions" for Players starting to age and slowly breaking down.

There are, however, a LOT of good posts and great information laying deep in the old topics that would benefit from more exposure/indexing.
After considering several options, I decided to give "Thanks for Posts" a try: https://www.phpbb.com/customise/db/mod/thanks_for_posts
thanks.png
For now you can add a "thank you note" on a post linked to an active account (not yours obviously, this is not Facebook!) and when enough thanks are received, I'll be able to pull out a list of popular topics and posters (in quality, not in quantity or most recent posts).

If you bookmarked or liked an old post, don't hesitate to go like it to give him a chance to shine again for newcomers!

And if you want to enable notifications (PM or Email) when someone thanked you, you will have to update your User Profile here:

http://forum.lddb.com/ucp.php?i=prefs&mode=personal

UCP.png

Julien

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Posted: 03 Jan 2018, 05:07 

Quite an advanced age for a venerable format!

Although there was a pre-production test batch of Jaws back in 1977, the first commercial release hit the market end of 1978 as Jaws (1975) [12-001] .

And somehow, even the first released can still be played today!

29954c07bf0e1ff6684db0ba148a07d4.jpg (is it what heavy laser rot looks like on a cake? ;-))

Let's see if other formats will still play 40 years after entering the market.

For some reason, *6* seems to be the magic number for new video commercial formats:


DVD -> 1996
HDDVD/BD -> 2006
UHD BD -> 2016

Let's synchronize our watches now and try to play these formats by, respectively, 2036, 2046 and 2056!

Julien

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 Post subject: Re: The Matrix LD vs DVD
Posted: 27 Jul 2018, 16:20 

Photobucket really hates me, so it took me much more effort than I first thought to get these captures saved and so I uploaded them again. Also added two screenshots from the DVD.

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1DBFWS ... lA2g5uGVfw

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 Post subject: Re: The Matrix LD vs DVD
Posted: 28 Jul 2018, 20:03 

It's so funny how all people are complaining about "history revision" yet have no experience whatsoever in this business. I'm a film restorer and colorist. Here's a little thing for you all to consider before you start yelling how inaccurate modern releases are:

During the 80s and 90s, most TV manufacturers (especially Sony with their Trinitron sets) had such terrible accuracy out of the box with major blue push. We do see this kind of torch mode today of course, but back then there was really not as much interest for consumers to calibrate their displays and as the movie studios have always been interested in making money, most films that appeared on home video and Laserdisc were to a certain point color timed to compensate for these inaccurate sets (hence red push was very common on masters in this era of time). This meant that pretty much every DVD you'll find by MGM released prior to 2005 or such will have an overly reddish tone and all share the exact same characteristic. Only problem however is that most of these films had much more sophisticated color timings than what we saw on VHS and DVD yet people still take this for granted.

And this becomes extremely clear when you start to have a look at the physical films in an archive. Theatrical prints, even though they never tend to have much sharpness, are usually what we go after. And they rarely have much in common with an outdated VHS, Laserdisc or DVD. Of course we can still have a look at a home video release just for the sake of it, but we know that it has been going through way too many compromises to be used as a reference.

For instance, I had the chance to check out Thief on a Swedish 35mm print from the early 80s. I kept the new grade that's used on the Criterion and Arrow releases (Director's Cut only), as people have complained for years for it being inaccurate. Look at this comparison: http://www.caps-a-holic.com/c.php?go=1&a=0&d1=3606&d2=5422&s1=33376&s2=50607&i=6&l=0
And guess what? This scene was so cold and blue, even when only going through a photochemical process, that's it's not even debateable. The MGM was so off you wouldn't believe it, while the restoration by Criterion keeps it all intact.

Many people complained about the Scanners Blu-Ray by Criterion yet relatively few (in contrast) seem to even have seen it. I've got the BD myself and have honestly no doubt that it's an accurate presentation of the films intended look. The entire process was also supervised by David Cronenberg himself and from my experience, both directors and cinematagraphers tend to remember the color timings and gradings that were used for their films.

As a colorist at one the oldest film archives in the world, I have no intention in changing how the films I grade are supposed to look. I can do plenty of research before I settle down with my work, but sometimes you will have to take a chance if it's unclear just how the film was really supposed to look. Then I will have to look at other factors that play in and try to make a decision from there, but I don't go to Blu-Ray.com or this forum to ask for suggestions. I have a very difficult time believing that someone who hangs around there or at this place, who I don't know through my job, would be of any help when I'm facing a problem like that.

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 Post subject: Re: About the seller DaDon
Posted: 02 Aug 2018, 03:37 

Duncanism is a well documented and confirmed plague now.

Duncanism
/'dʌŋ.kənɪzəm/
noun

Unresponsive service provider after money has been duly paid.
"I've sent my LD Player for repair to Duncan but he stopped answering emails. I believe I'm a victim of Duncanism."
synonymous : scam, fraud, MIA, communication breakdown, Comcast, Ponzi scheme

Julien

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Posted: 02 Aug 2018, 18:07 

@Pizmo: Hmm, Episode 1 is pretty bad.
True, but I can't help but love it.

I put ep.1 in the same category as Superman, Mortal Kombat and the TMNT movie. Objectively speaking they are all terrible movies, but the 10 year old kid in me that thought these were the coolest movies of all time makes me love them despite their flaws

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Posted: 01 Sep 2018, 04:35 

Hope to be proven wrong but a new production LD player is pretty much a pipe dream.

The engineer teams who designed and mass-produced these Players all retired a long time ago and their teams got terminated early 2000's anyway.

Analog video design is a lost art -- SONY couldn't fix a MUSE Decoder only years after selling them -- and almost everything is digital now.

We have to make sure we can salvage working parts from broken players to keep them running as long as possible.
My next coding time (from November when I move back to France without a daily job) will be to work on the Player database + parts. A long time overdue project!

As seen a couple times here recently, we're getting into the 20~30 years of lime time and it's definitely time for a refresh of capacitance with newer parts.

Julien

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Posted: 03 Oct 2018, 04:51 

I think it is perfeclty natural to think about "return of laserdisc" when you discover this media, and start to love it.
I also had the same natural thought when I start laserdisc 3 years ago (I did a post about that, and as here, everyone said it was impossible, and I thought they just lacked of enthousiam).

But now, I perfectly understand and accept that it will not be possible.
I talked a lot with pioneer engeneer here in Japan, and only few people (+50 years old) in Pioneer, can perfectly understand now how LD works.
Pioneer also did a fusion with onkyo, and changed their catagory like that : Their target is now people who don't want to spend more than 100$ for a player.

Most of engeneer now, are not working on creating technology from scratch.
They are thinking about using technology that already exists (100% digital), and combine them together smartly, to sell them well.

After watching some video on you tube about the LD production process, you will also understand why it would be difficult.
You need BIG, very BIG factory to press and realease movies. Then lot of customers.

LD has been possible, because in Japan, between 1980 and 1990, people and factory had too much money.
One movie costed between 5000 yens and 20.000 yens. The price of a player today.
The way of thinking were also completly different.
Big, expensive things had good image in the society.

The real problem is not really the technology. because any engeneer can learn in few month about any technology.
The problem is neither about "quality of the image". Because today, 90% of people watch movies on 10cm screens.
Most of people I know don't mind about difference between a 4K video and 240p video on you tube. But they want it fast.
Today, the keywords are "fast", "small", "eco", "fun", "convenient".
If you can prove to the entire society, that LD are all of that, then you have a chance of return.

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Posted: 20 Mar 2019, 23:33 

Here's the message:

Hello Criterion!

I'm sorry to contact you out of the blue like that but I should have done it a long time ago. :-)

I'm the webmaster of lddb.com (LaserDisc Database) where Criterion original releases are prominently featured:

https://www.lddb.com/

LD Criterion release by:

CC # = https://www.lddb.com/list.php?format=ld&list=crit&sort=ref&max=250
Title = https://www.lddb.com/list.php?format=ld&list=crit&max=250
Spine = https://www.lddb.com/list.php?format=ld&list=crit&sort=spine&max=250

All available covers, in chronological order: https://www.lddb.com/criterion.php

Site's forum section dedicated to Criterion releases: https://forum.lddb.com/viewforum.php?f=13

I know you dropped Laserdiscs decades ago and jumped into DVD, BluRay (no 4K coming?) and soon video streaming.

I have very simple questions/requests for you:

Would you still have people working at Criterion who used to work on the LD packaging/curating that I could interview?

Any left-over material (unused concepts, cancelled releases, etc.) that the fan would love to discover?

Any LD-related archives that would love to get a 2nd youth?

I'm trying to save the very little that remains from the 80's/90's before they completely disappear ^_^;

Thank you for taking the time to read this message!

Regards,
Julien

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Posted: 02 Sep 2019, 05:18 

Small update, but I've confirmed with someone who used to use these back in the 90's, and the "test" screen does confirm that they are blank. I feel like I'm getting a bit deeper into this rabbit hole than I had originally planned.

Here's a transcription of the conversation we had, and some more information.


Hey, haven't seen one of these in a while. Here's what I know!

In the 1990's, my father ran a video production business that specialized in weddings and trials, most of which wanted VHS copies of their stuff. A few did want Laserdisc, so he'd farm that out to this same company, "Laser Disc Recording Center" in Cambridge Massachusetts. The discs were all made by the "Optical Disc Corporation" out of Santa Fe Springs California. I was a kid at the time, but I'd estimate 100 or so of these discs passed through there. Both businesses folded sometime after the new millennium- my father's last filled recordable laser disc order was in 2003. If there had been a "prosumer" Laser Disc recorder available, I'm sure my father would have bought it, so I rather doubt there were any out there. He did say/brag that 'they' (the people who recorded the laserdiscs) were using the same system he was for S/VHS, the Amiga 4000T with NewTek's video toaster 4000- which was one of the top-of-the-line ways to handle analog video back in the day, so I wouldn't doubt it. The equipment these guys were using is still out there, somewhere, and it would be a great boost to the Laserdisc community/fandom if there were some way to get our hands on them as a service again. But short of getting the specialized equipment, or a time machine back to the 1990's, I don't know if there is a way to take those rare disks and make them into the most valuable treasure on earth. The Star Wars Holiday Special on Laserdisc... that would be beyond incredible.

Interestingly, some of the "single" sided disks have a silver "dimpled" pattern on the "blank" side. This leads me to believe that whatever media they're using to record on (the ruby stuff) is the most expensive component of making these recordable disks. I've no proof of that, but I can't think of why they'd leave a side basically blank like this.

Pictures:
Case: https://i.gyazo.com/82d28cf8ac224df153dcff93a7cbe89a.jpg
Disk (side A): https://i.gyazo.com/20878f5e8e85b3ae4c52a71c023750ac.jpg
Disk (side B): https://i.gyazo.com/02a4ec05c070beb461afebe42fe62855.jpg

I'll keep my eyes open, and do some sleuthing. If I ever can get my hands on the means to record one of these things, you'll be the first to know.



I followed up by asking if he knew how to tell if the discs were blank, or of they could have multiple writes.


I'm not really sure about rewriting them- the process by which these were made suggests that there might have been a way to erase a disk to then write a fresh analog signal, but I have no idea what sort of equipment you might need to achieve that, or what the results might be. Again, I'm not entirely sure on that one.

As for "are they actually blank" I took your pictures and showed them to my father. He said that that's the "blank" signal from ODC to verify the disk is good, and ready to be recorded to. You, my lucky friend, likely have some of the last blank RLV disks out there!

A bit more info he provided; the service Laser Disc Recording Center provided (he called it 'mastering' but I'm not sure that that's the right term) cost about $100 per disk, going all the way back to the mid 1990's. He said the only people that wanted Laserdiscs made were attorneys and insurance companies involved in big-ticket lawsuits he was hired to film depositions for, and they gladly paid the fees for them. He said he averaged about 10 disks a year until DVD came around.

The hunt for a machine that'll make RLV's continues. Again, if I find anything, you'll be the first to know!
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