Problem #472 with the Dragon Boxes - DNR

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Problem #472 with the Dragon Boxes - DNR

Post by Robo4900 » Sat Mar 21, 2020 11:26 pm

The Dragon Boxes are a perfectly okay video master by which to just frickin' watch the show.

But, they're also kinda shitty by today's standards of film transfer.

One particular way in which they are kinda shitty is DNR. They were most certainly DNR'd, and the method by which that was done was a motion blur, essentially.

Anyone who knows about the Star Wars GOUT DVDs will know where I'm going with this. But for those who don't...

Feast your eyes on this comparison.

Both images were photographed from the same animation cel, and yet the details are very different. This is because the motion blur DNR is screwing with the linework in dark areas such as this rock face.
You can even see the edge of the rock face's drawing partially bleeding into the background image on the right, in the first of the two images.

And, to be clear, this isn't just a blink-and-you'll-miss-it one-frame flaw like a lot of the issues people point out with the encoding on the Funi DVD singles; this shot lasts several seconds, and you can plainly see in motion the linework wobbling and distorting as you're watching. It's real weird.

You can see many, many other great examples of this in the Dragon Boxes, but this one just popped up while I was catching up on the rewatch, and I think it's a particularly good way to demonstrate this particularly annoying flaw in the Dragon Boxes.

Now, obviously the DBox DNR is no where near as universally-destructive as Funimation's complete sham of a post-remastering filtering process, and many of us have concluded, yes, the Dragon Boxes are still superior to the Funi "HD" releases in every way, but like every Dragon Ball video master, the Dragon Boxes are deeply flawed, and like most video masters produced on the cheap in the early '00s, some serious mistakes were made, which have never been rectified, and may never be rectified.

Just thought this would be worth sharing.
Last edited by Robo4900 on Sat Mar 21, 2020 11:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Dragon Ball is a goofy kids cartoon from a long time ago. You take it too seriously at your own peril.
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Re: Problem #472 with the Dragon Boxes - DNR

Post by eledoremassis02 » Sat Mar 21, 2020 11:32 pm

This kinda reminds me of the line art removal from the Orange Bricks DNR tho nowhere near as bad. Is this from the U.S dragon box?

I'll have to check this out

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Re: Problem #472 with the Dragon Boxes - DNR

Post by Robo4900 » Sat Mar 21, 2020 11:34 pm

eledoremassis02 wrote:
Sat Mar 21, 2020 11:32 pm
This kinda reminds me of the line art removal from the Orange Bricks DNR tho nowhere near as bad.
Yep.
eledoremassis02 wrote:
Sat Mar 21, 2020 11:32 pm
Is this from the U.S dragon box?
I'll have to check this out
No, it's from the OG DB box. Episode 48. About 18 minutes into the episode.
Dragon Ball is a goofy kids cartoon from a long time ago. You take it too seriously at your own peril.
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Re: Problem #472 with the Dragon Boxes - DNR

Post by eledoremassis02 » Sat Mar 21, 2020 11:41 pm

Robo4900 wrote:
Sat Mar 21, 2020 11:34 pm
eledoremassis02 wrote:
Sat Mar 21, 2020 11:32 pm
This kinda reminds me of the line art removal from the Orange Bricks DNR tho nowhere near as bad.
Yep.
eledoremassis02 wrote:
Sat Mar 21, 2020 11:32 pm
Is this from the U.S dragon box?
I'll have to check this out
No, it's from the OG DB box. Episode 48. About 18 minutes into the episode.
I dont know if its just that shot but it looks super compressed

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Re: Problem #472 with the Dragon Boxes - DNR

Post by Robo4900 » Sat Mar 21, 2020 11:53 pm

eledoremassis02 wrote:
Sat Mar 21, 2020 11:41 pm
I dont know if its just that shot but it looks super compressed
I should disclose that I'm watching from my own personal encode, so it's possible that's the problem.

Though in my experience, if it looks shitty in my encode, it looked shitty on the DVD anyway. The Dragon Boxes weren't very well encoded, and much like with the DNR issues, dark areas suffer the worst.
Dragon Ball is a goofy kids cartoon from a long time ago. You take it too seriously at your own peril.
Debate the plot, characters, adaptations, dubs, etc., criticise the home video, but never lose sight of the fact that it's all just entertainment. You're supposed to enjoy it. If you're not enjoying it, just walk away.

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Re: Problem #472 with the Dragon Boxes - DNR

Post by eledoremassis02 » Sat Mar 21, 2020 11:55 pm

Robo4900 wrote:
Sat Mar 21, 2020 11:53 pm
eledoremassis02 wrote:
Sat Mar 21, 2020 11:41 pm
I dont know if its just that shot but it looks super compressed
I should disclose that I'm watching from my own personal encode, so it's possible that's the problem.

Though in my experience, if it looks shitty in my encode, it looked shitty on the DVD anyway. The Dragon Boxes weren't very well encoded, and much like with the DNR issues, dark areas suffer the worst.
Yea, that's why I thought it was the FUNi one. I'm not a 100% familiar with the OG Dragon Box. I'm watching the GT singles right now and while they are a step down from the Dragon Box, they're a pretty solid release and GT seems the be pretty consistent (probably because they're from the same film scan) Its the same the rest of the franchise isnt as lucky

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Re: Problem #472 with the Dragon Boxes - DNR

Post by Dragon Ball Ireland » Sun Mar 22, 2020 6:50 am

Honestly, if the Level sets were completed the Dragon Boxes wouldn't be as pedestalised as they have been by the fandom. They are rated on being a complete, uncut release of all 291 episodes, and considering their only competition in English-speaking territories is the orange bricks, season Blu-Rays and 30th set it's not exactly a high bar.
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Re: Problem #472 with the Dragon Boxes - DNR

Post by jaisonas » Sun Mar 22, 2020 7:21 am

I have one kinda related question about the DBoxes.
Did toei use the master negatives for them or was it a positive print of some close gen?
Also known as "[EncoderAnon] and his shitty HxH encode"

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Re: Problem #472 with the Dragon Boxes - DNR

Post by Robo4900 » Sun Mar 22, 2020 1:16 pm

Dragon Ball Ireland wrote:
Sun Mar 22, 2020 6:50 am
Honestly, if the Level sets were completed the Dragon Boxes wouldn't be as pedestalised as they have been by the fandom. They are rated on being a complete, uncut release of all 291 episodes, and considering their only competition in English-speaking territories is the orange bricks, season Blu-Rays and 30th set it's not exactly a high bar.
True.

And if OG DB and GT's season sets hadn't been so blurry, instead just being honest presentations of what's on the master tapes (even the singles didn't always get that right; DB's earlier singles are very grainy, very sharp, very detailed... The later ones, even as early as just the 22nd Tenkaichi, are much softer, and clearly inferior to DBox), they'd probably be better overall than DBox too.

The Dragon Boxes are ultimately only good because they're a pretty acceptable way to watch the original 508 episodes.
jaisonas wrote:
Sun Mar 22, 2020 7:21 am
I have one kinda related question about the DBoxes.
Did toei use the master negatives for them or was it a positive print of some close gen?
Both.

The actual episode footage is from negatives, the OPs are from first-gen prints (the negatives only cover the episode contents, and I think they either threw away or didn't keep good track of where their OPs/EDs went. But the OPs were generally all the same in large ranges of episodes, so Toei would just use the OP from one episode for a whole batch of DBox episodes), as were the EDs and NEPs (the EDs were attached as the first-gen prints were made, and credits were optically printed on, so no negatives exist of the per-episode EDs, since each ED would credit the present actors, episode staff, and such. Similarly, the NEP footage was attached using whatever "finished" footage was available, but there would FREQUENTLY be retakes on the footage before the next episode was fully assembled, and the old negatives were either thrown away or not kept good track of, so the prints are the only surviving copies of the NEP footage).

That's my understanding, anyway.
Dragon Ball is a goofy kids cartoon from a long time ago. You take it too seriously at your own peril.
Debate the plot, characters, adaptations, dubs, etc., criticise the home video, but never lose sight of the fact that it's all just entertainment. You're supposed to enjoy it. If you're not enjoying it, just walk away.

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Re: Problem #472 with the Dragon Boxes - DNR

Post by SuperSaiyaManZ94 » Sun Mar 22, 2020 1:30 pm

Generally speaking, while all the "Remastered" season releases are no doubt flawed i can at least watch DB's especially since that's the only way you can get the first arc uncut and bilingual over here. Though of course the masters FUNi has for the series are standard def multi gen digebeta tapes that are inherently missing the content from the first gen film that Toei has, and obviously it doesn't look as good as those. GT on the other hand they got more or less a pre remastered version of the same set of masters later used for the Dragon Box (aside from the compression/artifacting) which looks about the same detail wise. As i've said before, it's a darn shame that FUNi didn't just use the versions they already had previously for Z on the Ultimate Uncut/bilingual singles. They could've produced the Orange Bricks that way and they would've still sold well enough, and without the fake widescreen cropping or smeared to hell image.
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Re: Problem #472 with the Dragon Boxes - DNR

Post by eledoremassis02 » Sun Mar 22, 2020 1:50 pm

Generally speaking, while all the "Remastered" season releases are no doubt flawed i can at least watch DB's especially since that's the only way you can get the first arc uncut and bilingual over here. Though of course the masters FUNi has for the series are standard def multi gen digebeta tapes that are inherently missing the content from the first gen film that Toei has, and obviously it doesn't look as good as those. GT on the other hand they got more or less a pre remastered version of the same set of masters later used for the Dragon Box (aside from the compression/artifacting) which looks about the same detail wise. As i've said before, it's a darn shame that FUNi didn't just use the versions they already had previously for Z on the Ultimate Uncut/bilingual singles. They could've produced the Orange Bricks that way and they would've still sold well enough, and without the fake widescreen cropping or smeared to hell image.
[/quote]
[/spoiler]
Also kills me they never at least did a GT "Dragon Box" that would basically better-encoded singles with the option of the U.S dub w/Japanese score (and even get rid of the U.S score to fit it with the dragon box Z if they had too). Then the Zbox's would be sitting by themselves. The blue bricks are totally fine, I'd like a DNRed set but that's what the singles are for.

At worst, they would have looked like this:
Image Image Image

Also, some shots of a much less compressed Z digibeta
Image Image

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Re: Problem #472 with the Dragon Boxes - DNR

Post by SuperSaiyaManZ94 » Sun Mar 22, 2020 2:05 pm

Also kills me they never at least did a GT "Dragon Box" that would basically better-encoded singles with the option of the U.S dub w/Japanese score (and even get rid of the U.S score to fit it with the dragon box Z if they had too). Then the Zbox's would be sitting by themselves. The blue bricks are totally fine, I'd like a DNRed set but that's what the singles are for.

At worst, they would have looked like this:
Image Image Image

Also, some shots of a much less compressed Z digibeta
Image Image
[/quote]

[/spoiler]

Even still, those look really good quality wise seeing as FUNi's masters of GT are more or less the same as the Dragon Box.
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Re: Problem #472 with the Dragon Boxes - DNR

Post by kei17 » Sun Mar 22, 2020 2:27 pm

It's kinda surprising that this hasn't been brought up until now. It's very obvious in a lot of scenes containing dark details. I've never noticed this kind of ghosting caused by DNR in DBZ and GT, though.

Image Image

Image Image

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Re: Problem #472 with the Dragon Boxes - DNR

Post by Robo4900 » Sun Mar 22, 2020 2:55 pm

kei17 wrote:
Sun Mar 22, 2020 2:27 pm
It's kinda surprising that this hasn't been brought up until now. It's very obvious in a lot of scenes containing dark details. I've never noticed this kind of ghosting caused by DNR in DBZ and GT, though.
Agreed, it is quite surprising.

I have seen it in Z. I don't have a screenshot to hand, but you can see some ghosting of outlines in the We Gotta Power OP in Vegeta's hair in at least one shot, and in episode... 195?... The first one of the afterlife tournament mini-arc, whichever one that is, you can see a lot of ghosting in the dark areas of Bubbles the monkey when he's jumping up and down waiting for Goku and Kaio.
GT, I can't recall any examples at the moment. Possible there is none, and they'd ironed out the issue by then.

I think it's clear Pony Canyon got a little better as they went on; the GT DBoxes look really solid all the way through, but the early DB ones look quite iffy, and have some odd framing issues (remember the problem with episode 52, where you can see the bottom of each next film frame? And of course, DB frequently has the bevelled eges of the frame at the bottom-right corner in shots). I guess they realised they should dial the DNR back a bit as they went on, to prevent these ghosting problems.
Dragon Ball is a goofy kids cartoon from a long time ago. You take it too seriously at your own peril.
Debate the plot, characters, adaptations, dubs, etc., criticise the home video, but never lose sight of the fact that it's all just entertainment. You're supposed to enjoy it. If you're not enjoying it, just walk away.

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Re: Problem #472 with the Dragon Boxes - DNR

Post by GhostEmperorX » Sun Mar 22, 2020 3:23 pm

In other words, standard Toei ineptitude. Good on detecting this, but is any of this even news at this point anymore?
If by this point this series hasn't received proper justice in releases then it likely never will.

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Re: Problem #472 with the Dragon Boxes - DNR

Post by Metalwario64 » Sun Mar 22, 2020 3:43 pm

The later, less DNRd Orange Bricks and the Double Features seem to have a similar motion blur issue with dark colors. I've noticed many frames have a bit of the previous frame lingering in the blacks and other dark colors (but I don't have any shots on hand. I'll either update this post or post them in later if I find my shots or retake them later).
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Re: Problem #472 with the Dragon Boxes - DNR

Post by jaisonas » Sun Mar 22, 2020 3:56 pm

This could very well be the result of the scan being transferred on tape considering it was 2004 and there were not large HDDs available.
Also known as "[EncoderAnon] and his shitty HxH encode"

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Re: Problem #472 with the Dragon Boxes - DNR

Post by eledoremassis02 » Sun Mar 22, 2020 6:58 pm

I asked a friend in France who imported the Spain DB Blu-rays and said she didn't notice anything like that. Anyone here who has that can confirm?
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Re: Problem #472 with the Dragon Boxes - DNR

Post by Robo4900 » Sun Mar 22, 2020 9:18 pm

eledoremassis02 wrote:
Sun Mar 22, 2020 6:58 pm
I asked a friend in France who imported the Spain DB Blu-rays and said she didn't notice anything like that. Anyone here who has that can confirm?
Can't confirm, but I believe the Spanish BDs were authored from the pre-DNR masters of the DBox -- the same masters that Japanese TV stations currently use for their airings -- but they kind of destroyed all value in that by applying the same kind of blurry spatial DNR that Funi applied to the Blue Bricks, Season BDs, etc.
Even there, you can see some of the lineart in the guy's coat has been erased (or otherwise obfuscated) by this.
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Debate the plot, characters, adaptations, dubs, etc., criticise the home video, but never lose sight of the fact that it's all just entertainment. You're supposed to enjoy it. If you're not enjoying it, just walk away.

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Re: Problem #472 with the Dragon Boxes - DNR

Post by peterx » Mon Mar 23, 2020 7:21 am

kei17 wrote:
Sun Mar 22, 2020 2:27 pm
It's kinda surprising that this hasn't been brought up until now. It's very obvious in a lot of scenes containing dark details. I've never noticed this kind of ghosting caused by DNR in DBZ and GT, though.
Dear kei17,

I'm sorry this may be a little bit off-topic here (impossible to contact you :mrgreen: ) but I heard that you created the Youtube version of one of the rarest Dragon Ball special called "Looking Back at it All The Dragon Ball Z Year End Show" from 1993? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JoKdHXc_V3o

Would you be so kind to share the "full" version of it with the DB community here? (I'd even pay for it if needed or helping with your dub collections making more complete) It would be make so many DB fans happy as this special is impossible to find in better quality than YT.. :) Thank You very much if you consider it!

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