The Better Investment: Japanese or US Dragon Boxes?

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Wezenheim
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The Better Investment: Japanese or US Dragon Boxes?

Post by Wezenheim » Sun May 01, 2016 2:09 am

I've been mulling over this the past few days, and although I won't be making a decision anytime soon, I do think I'll start saving up sometime in the future. What would be the better investment: The American Dragon Boxes for Z, or the Japanese boxes? If you use sites like Yahoo Auction or Amazon Japan's third party sellers, you can get both volumes of the Japanese boxes for around the same price as a complete set of American ones. Bearing that in mind, which would be better for me to save for? The American boxes don't require you to spend as much at one time and they come with subtitles as well as the English dub for pure novelty. However, the footage for the Japanese boxes seem to look better and it would have a ton of cool factor.

If and when I actually get around to saving up, what would all of you recommend?

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Re: The Better Investment: Japanese or US Dragon Boxes?

Post by LordCrumb » Sun May 01, 2016 2:41 am

The American ones, as they come with Subtitles.

Unless you have the time to rip the Japanese discs, then rip the subtitles from the American set, then make sure the timing is still good to switch them over, then burn the discs again, and then be satisfied that you're watching a DVD-R DL rather than the legit disc you paid for..

Personally, I couldn't do it. Having to watch a copied disc rather than the real thing.. even if the content was a direct copy.

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Re: The Better Investment: Japanese or US Dragon Boxes?

Post by TheKingOfKamehamehas » Sun May 01, 2016 3:06 am

I would say the Japanese Dragon Boxes because they have high quality packaging and a much more higher quality feel with all those little books just being two giant books. If you happen to get the boxes with the action figures then that is even more awesome. They also cut off the legs of Goku and Gohan in the American Dragon Boxes. The front has just one single character on the American Dragon Boxes which I prefer.

There is also the cases being blue in the Japanese Dragon Boxes while it is purple on the American Dragon Boxes and the American Dragon Boxes having different disc art. The Japanese Menu and American Menu is different with the Japanese menu having footage playing in the background while the American Dragon Boxes just have a static image. They also remove the "Story Mode" option on the American version which was like Marathon Mode. No Extras either on the American version. So unhappy with that choice :twisted:

The footage is also a little bit better on the Japanese Dragon Boxes because of the higher bit rate.
Basically the Japanese Dragon Boxes are better in almost every way for me except for the subtitles and the dubbing.

A little note: I have a gut feeling Funimation would release another 4:3 release over Toei sooner. They can capitalize on Dragon Ball Z before Super airs and they have so many releases so Why Not?
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Re: The Better Investment: Japanese or US Dragon Boxes?

Post by Wezenheim » Sun May 01, 2016 11:44 am

Thanks for the advice you guys. I'm going to need to save up either way, but I have a lot to think about! The American boxes probably make more sense at the moment, although I was planning on learning Japanese. I have no idea how well that will go though! Still, the Japanese boxes are really tempting and I think I'm leaning that direction right now. Maybe by the time I save up we will get a new 4:3 release, wouldnt that be something?

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Re: The Better Investment: Japanese or US Dragon Boxes?

Post by Ajay » Sun May 01, 2016 12:46 pm

For the ability to actually watch and understand the series, the US box is obviously the way to go.

The Japanese boxes feature a higher bitrate, and come with very premium packaging.

The bitrate difference is not significant enough that you're ever going to pause your US set and go "Well, that's shit", but you can definitely notice the difference if you're looking for it during the heaviest of action.

I bought the Japanese set entirely because they sat nicely next to my GT and Movies set. But that's all they do... They just sit there.

I now have subtitled ISOs of all the sets taking up hundreds of GBs on my PC so that I can actually see the series subtitled.

Hopefully that tells you something about which way to go. Sometimes practicality is more important that simply having the collector's item.
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Re: The Better Investment: Japanese or US Dragon Boxes?

Post by Wezenheim » Sun May 01, 2016 1:06 pm

Ajay wrote:For the ability to actually watch and understand the series, the US box is obviously the way to go.

The Japanese boxes feature a higher bitrate, and come with very premium packaging.

The bitrate difference is not significant enough that you're ever going to pause your US set and go "Well, that's shit", but you can definitely notice the difference if you're looking for it during the heaviest of action.

I bought the Japanese set entirely because they sat nicely next to my GT and Movies set. But that's all they do... They just sit there.

I now have subtitled ISOs of all the sets taking up hundreds of GBs on my PC so that I can actually see the series subtitled.

Hopefully that tells you something about which way to go. Sometimes practicality is more important that simply having the collector's item.
Are there any other significant differences between the two besides the bitrate? You make a lot of good points. I just don't know! Maybe I'll end up getting both one day. Like I said earlier, the US boxes don't require as much of an investment at one time, except for box 2. Maybe I'll buy at least one or two of the cheaper US boxes and gauge my interests from there.

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Re: The Better Investment: Japanese or US Dragon Boxes?

Post by Ajay » Sun May 01, 2016 1:19 pm

Wezenheim wrote:Are there any other significant differences between the two besides the bitrate? You make a lot of good points. I just don't know! Maybe I'll end up getting both one day. Like I said earlier, the US boxes don't require as much of an investment at one time, except for box 2. Maybe I'll buy at least one or two of the cheaper US boxes and gauge my interests from there.
Not really. The US sets have one extra episode per disc which is what accounts for the lower bitrate.

The Japanese set also has a marathon mode if that's your kinda thing, I guess.
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Re: The Better Investment: Japanese or US Dragon Boxes?

Post by Wezenheim » Sun May 01, 2016 1:33 pm

Ajay wrote:Not really. The US sets have one extra episode per disc which is what accounts for the lower bitrate.

The Japanese set also has a marathon mode if that's your kinda thing, I guess.
The marathon mode isn't a huge deal. Thanks again for the input! It'll be a while before I decide but everyone has been very helpful.

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Re: The Better Investment: Japanese or US Dragon Boxes?

Post by thejeremymenace » Sun May 01, 2016 1:41 pm

Ajay wrote:The bitrate difference is not significant enough that you're ever going to pause your US set and go "Well, that's shit", but you can definitely notice the difference if you're looking for it during the heaviest of action.
It's worth noting that, if you're an obsessive-compulsive videophile like me, since the bitrate is higher, the grain is also a bit finer on the JP sets, so details are sharper even in still scenes -- which might influence you one way or the other.

Also the black dead pixel area is absent from the top of the frame, and instead there are two on both sides, which gets cropped anyway if your player handles DVDs correctly.
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Re: The Better Investment: Japanese or US Dragon Boxes?

Post by Pokewhiz7 » Sun May 01, 2016 1:45 pm

You can look up screenshots on the forum, but as far as I know, too, the sixth and seventh US boxes are just as sharp as the Japanese ones. Must have gotten a better encoder or something.

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Re: The Better Investment: Japanese or US Dragon Boxes?

Post by Ajay » Sun May 01, 2016 1:47 pm

thejeremymenace wrote:It's worth noting that, if you're an obsessive-compulsive videophile like me, since the bitrate is higher, the grain is also a bit finer on the JP sets, so details are sharper even in still scenes -- which might influence you one way or the other.
I'm probably just as obsessive, but let's be realistic, if you're doing a side-by-side for most stills, it's so minimal that it's not particularly notable. It's not one of those cases where you're going to actively notice any issue without prior knowledge, which was precisely my point.

In action, sure. In stills... Eh.
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Re: The Better Investment: Japanese or US Dragon Boxes?

Post by thejeremymenace » Sun May 01, 2016 1:57 pm

Yeah for sure. 99% of people will not notice a difference unless they're reeeeeeally looking.

Image

So to reiterate what everyone has said, if you don't want to get your hands dirty mucking about with subtitle syncing & possibly re-authoring DVDs, for sure grab the US boxes if you can. I've been selling mine recently since buying the JP boxes and I've noticed the prices are starting to stabilize and even decrease a little bit.
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Re: The Better Investment: Japanese or US Dragon Boxes?

Post by Frieza's Henchmen » Sun May 01, 2016 2:18 pm

thejeremymenace wrote:Yeah for sure. 99% of people will not notice a difference unless they're reeeeeeally looking.

Image

So to reiterate what everyone has said, if you don't want to get your hands dirty mucking about with subtitle syncing & possibly re-authoring DVDs, for sure grab the US boxes if you can. I've been selling mine recently since buying the JP boxes and I've noticed the prices are starting to stabilize and even decrease a little bit.
That is true. I recently got dragon box 2 off eBay for $75 in near perfect condition. I will also add that I think the U.S. Boxes would be better. That is what I went with and am happy. The slightly higher bitrate does not bother me. I also didn't want to mess with doing subtitles on the Japanese ones as I would be afraid I would somehow permanently mess up the discs.

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Re: The Better Investment: Japanese or US Dragon Boxes?

Post by samuraix123 » Sun May 01, 2016 2:33 pm

Do you understand Japanese? If you can then go with the Japanese Dragonboxes but if you can't then I'd say definitely the US Dragonboxes because at least you'd be getting subtitles and if you liked the US voices it's there as well. I got the first season of the Dragonbox singles and personally it just sits on my shelf because what's the point in me watching something if I can't understand what their saying? haha (and before someone says Why'd you get em for?) Because I'm crazy and I just like getting stuff! :P :lol: I loved the cover art.
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Re: The Better Investment: Japanese or US Dragon Boxes?

Post by superrayman3 » Sun May 01, 2016 3:46 pm

Ajay wrote:The US sets have one extra episode per disc which is what accounts for the lower bitrate.
You forgot to mention the inclusion of the 5.1 english audio track which forced the bitrate to be chopped off even more (in fact had the english dub not been included like FUNi had originally planned the quality difference in video would probably be minimal to nonexistent).
If anyone has any of the DB/DBZ/DBGT or Maho Tsuaki Sally Japanese single DVD's that they'd be interested in selling send me a PM and I'll see if we can work something out. ;).

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Re: The Better Investment: Japanese or US Dragon Boxes?

Post by Danfun64 » Sun May 01, 2016 3:58 pm

IMO, the Funi Dragon Boxes would have had better compression with the dub track included if each disc had one episode *less* than the Toei Dragon Boxes.

Also, if you want subtitles and 100% legality the Funi Dragon Boxes. If you don't need subtitles but still want 100% legality there are the Toei Dragon Boxes. If you are willing to bend copyright law, get both, rip both, and find a way to sync the subtitles of the Funi Dragon Boxes to the Toei Dragon Boxes. Also, keep a lookout on this It's not 100% complete yet, but when it is, it will make your work easier.
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Re: The Better Investment: Japanese or US Dragon Boxes?

Post by Wezenheim » Sun May 01, 2016 5:22 pm

Once again, thanks everyone. I think I'm going to go with the American boxes for now and maybe get the Japanese ones farther down the road. I'm sure I'll end up picking up the Dragon Ball box at some point though.

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Re: The Better Investment: Japanese or US Dragon Boxes?

Post by Danfun64 » Sun May 01, 2016 5:35 pm

The Funi Dragon Boxes only cover DBZ. For the original Dragon Ball, try the Blue Bricks out for size. Uncut, 4:3 and compatible with the link I just gave you, so when (and if) you eventually get the Toei Dragon Box for Original DB, you can get the best quality in a language you understand.
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Re: The Better Investment: Japanese or US Dragon Boxes?

Post by Wezenheim » Sun May 01, 2016 5:51 pm

Danfun64 wrote:The Funi Dragon Boxes only cover DBZ. For the original Dragon Ball, try the Blue Bricks out for size. Uncut, 4:3 and compatible with the link I just gave you, so when (and if) you eventually get the Toei Dragon Box for Original DB, you can get the best quality in a language you understand.
Oh I know, I was referring to the Japanese boxes for Dragon Ball. I have a blue brick and a couple of those saga sets (I prefer these to the bricks, but some DVDs can be pretty expensive). Thanks for the link, I'll keep that program in mind.

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