Astro Boy 1980 Blu-Ray

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-Nick-
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Astro Boy 1980 Blu-Ray

Postby -Nick- » 6 years ago

Hey.

Just wondering if anyone here has decided to buy the Japanese Blu Ray set for the 1980 series? I know it only has the english dub and no subs, but I am curious at how it looks plus some thoughts on it.

Does the audio just cut out when the english audio goes over vision that was cut?

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Postby DrFrag » 6 years ago

I have the first boxset, containing episodes 1-26 on 4 Blu-rays.

There's 2 audio streams for every episode, but episodes 1 and 2 have the same Japanese track for both streams. The rest of the episodes have dual Japanese and English audio. No subtitles. The English audio appears to have been taken from the USA DVD release which re-inserted deleted scenes that had no dialogue. The remaining deleted scenes are there with background music and sound effects, but no talking. So you get people's mouths moving and no voice coming out. Not a bad compromise I suppose.

For singing that was edited out, like the train song in Robot Circus, the English track has the instrumental as seen on all English versions. I'm not sure what happens to Uran's song in Uran's Twin, or Tezuka's introduction to Astro's First Love, as I only have the first box set.

The English "Next time on Astroboy..." sequences are restored in full for the first time since the Manga US VHS release, which is great to see. All on-screen text is still Japanese though.

There are no extra features on the Blu-ray. Not even a clean OP/ED, which is disappointing (opening and closing sequences without text). There's a simple menu where you can choose the episode and one of four places in the episode (opening credits, episode start, episode mid, end credits).

The boxset comes with a small 24-page booklet all in Japanese. There's a few pages of character sketches and bios, what appears to be Q&A pages of perhaps staff, and some general series text and summaries of episodes appearing in the second boxset.

Picture quality is fantastic. It's so clear that you can see film grain and nuances in linework.

Here's a summary shot of the picture quality. VHS is from the Australian PAL release. DVD is from the USA NTSC release (which is the best English version we have).
Image

While I'm showing screenshots, might as well cover all the past releases for comparison.

VHS PAL Australian version released in the 90s by Siren Entertainment, with cropped border:
Image
Pretty bad, not to mention the bad cuts made of previews to restore the episode order. Sorry I don't have a USA VHS comparitive shot, I don't have the capture equipment to view NTSC video tapes properly.

Once the show was released on DVD in Japan, online rips showed up with this quality:
Image
23.976fps, and about as clear as you could hope for. No English subs or dubs though.

After that, DVD bootlegs began showing up on eBay. They'd been converted to NTSC 29.97fps and horribly oversaturated.
Image

Finally we got an English language DVD release from Madman in Australia. Region 4, 25fps PAL.
Image
Unfortunately the quality suffered from the transition from 29.97fps to 25fps, after it had already been converted from 23.976fps for the US market. Had some great extra features though, including uncut subtitled episode 1+2.

Next came the USA DVD release in NTSC 29.970fps. The sharpest English language version up to this point.
Image

And finally the Japanese Blu-ray 1080p in its original 23.976fps with English. I won't break your browser by inserting it here, so here's the link:
http://i.imgur.com/j3Jvmfn.jpg

Here's a scene comparing the USA DVD and the Blu-ray.
DVD
Blu-ray
I chose this scene for several reasons. Firstly, Astro's boots are white which shows they didn't go George Lucas on the picture details. Secondly, the Blu-ray shows more of the picture edges than we've ever seen before. Thirdly, the Blu-ray image has better colour balance. Astro's red shirt has more saturation, but their faces haven't become redder. Fourthly, the DVD screenshot is an interlaced picture. While you wouldn't normally see interlacing artifacts (the "combing" effect on the background building), it's good to know the Blu-ray is perfectly sharp on every frame. And finally, I'm going to zoom in on the top left corner.

DVD:
Image

Blu-ray:
Image

You can see the film grain on the Blu-ray picture. The DVD's compression has smeared it so badly. The USA DVD release uses MPEG2 at 9.8Mbps, while the Blu-ray uses MPEG4 at 31.5Mbps. The difference is huge.

The Blu-rays are available from Amazon.co.jp
[url=http://www.amazon.co.jp/オリジナル-鉄腕アトム-Blu-ray-Special-期間限定生産版/dp/B00EI6R9YC]Box 1[/url]
[url=http://www.amazon.co.jp/オリジナル-鉄腕アトム-Blu-ray-Special-期間限定生産版/dp/B00EI74NZE]Box 2[/url]
RRP is 20,000 yen. About $200 per box. Yeowch.

I can post more screenshots if you'd like.
Image

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jeffbert
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Postby jeffbert » 6 years ago

:o hmy: Great comparison, Dr. Frag!
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Postby Tetsuwan Penguin » 6 years ago

Are the JP BDs playable on US machines or would I have to get a hackable machine to play them? (Oppo video players will do all region codes with a cheat code entered via the remote control. They cost about $500 though).
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F-Man
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Postby F-Man » 6 years ago

Holy CRAP that picture quality is so beautiful, it brings a tear to my eye. I'm still holding my breath that Anime Sols crowdfunds this soon, and I wish more people would request it to them.

"Tetsuwan Penguin" wrote:Are the JP BDs playable on US machines or would I have to get a hackable machine to play them? (Oppo video players will do all region codes with a cheat code entered via the remote control. They cost about $500 though).


Blu-ray in Japan is Region A, just like over here in North America. But anime Blu-ray releases in Japan tend to be all region.
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Dragonrider1227
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Postby Dragonrider1227 » 6 years ago

The picture quality is really good but don't know if I want to spend the money for something without english subtitles
Last edited by Dragonrider1227 on Tue Mar 25, 2014 9:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Whitelion
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Postby Whitelion » 6 years ago

That quality AUGH so lovely I can't. Anime sols please.

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Postby Fuzzy Pickles! » 6 years ago

There's 2 audio streams for every episode, but episodes 1 and 2 have the same Japanese track for both streams. The rest of the episodes have dual Japanese and English audio. No subtitles. The English audio appears to have been taken from the USA DVD release which re-inserted deleted scenes that had no dialogue. The remaining deleted scenes are there with background music and sound effects, but no talking. So you get people's mouths moving and no voice coming out. Not a bad compromise I suppose.
Weird, I've been hearing that it only had the English dub. If all fifty-two episodes have the Japanese dub, then I'll definitely have to get this eventually.

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F-Man
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Postby F-Man » 6 years ago

"astarisborn94" wrote:
There's 2 audio streams for every episode, but episodes 1 and 2 have the same Japanese track for both streams. The rest of the episodes have dual Japanese and English audio. No subtitles. The English audio appears to have been taken from the USA DVD release which re-inserted deleted scenes that had no dialogue. The remaining deleted scenes are there with background music and sound effects, but no talking. So you get people's mouths moving and no voice coming out. Not a bad compromise I suppose.
Weird, I've been hearing that it only had the English dub. If all fifty-two episodes have the Japanese dub, then I'll definitely have to get this eventually.


You might have heard that it has only the English dub as opposed to English SUB, which would have been the ideal option.
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Fuzzy Pickles!
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Postby Fuzzy Pickles! » 6 years ago

"F-Man" wrote:[QUOTE=astarisborn94;223529]
There's 2 audio streams for every episode, but episodes 1 and 2 have the same Japanese track for both streams. The rest of the episodes have dual Japanese and English audio. No subtitles. The English audio appears to have been taken from the USA DVD release which re-inserted deleted scenes that had no dialogue. The remaining deleted scenes are there with background music and sound effects, but no talking. So you get people's mouths moving and no voice coming out. Not a bad compromise I suppose.
Weird, I've been hearing that it only had the English dub. If all fifty-two episodes have the Japanese dub, then I'll definitely have to get this eventually.


You might have heard that it has only the English dub as opposed to English SUB, which would have been the ideal option.[/QUOTE]The lack of English subs is unfortunate, but that was not what I was asking about. DrFrag did say that the Japanese audio was present for all episodes. I was asking if it meant the Japanese dub was also present, English subtitles nonwithstanding.


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