Definitive Restorations challenged

 RON DUNN has a query 

Definitive Restorations.jpg

I recently purchased the new 2K/4K Definitive Restorations 6 disc boxset.


I received 6 DVD's. Straight away I was puzzled because DVD is not a hi definition format. I wondered how this format could produce 4K images on my UHD (Ultra High Definition) blu-ray player and be displayed on my 4K UHD large screen TV, in the advertised definitions.


And the answer is of course, it cannot. I feel cheated, and very disappointed that I am not getting what it states is on the box.


DVDs have a small capacity 4.7GB. This is standard definition. A blu-ray disc has 25GB single layer or 50GB dual layer capacity. This format has a 1K or 1080p definition called High Definition.


UHD Blu-ray discs have a capacity of 66 to 100 GB (depending on how many layers) 


Surely to see the films on the above collection in the advertised definition they would need to put on a UHD blu-ray disc format (which as far as I can see is not available).


I'm not sure how many Sons are aware of the above and have been unwittingly sold an item that is misleading in its quality claims.


I note that there is a blu-ray version of this collection available. But as I have stated above, that format is still incapable of displaying films in either 2K or 4K.

 ERIC SCHULTZ comments 

I've been thinking that because the cover states "2K/4K", probably means that the DVD is 2K, and that the Blu Ray is 4K. I'm not a technical expert, but the "2K/4K" statement seems to be just that. Nowhere does the cover information state that the DVD itself is 4K. 


Also, it could be in reference to the electronic equipment the company used to master the set. Maybe their own scan was 4K-capacity equipment, and that it translated that to the DVD format as sharp as can be.


In any case, I don't feel cheated at all. These films never looked this good before. We won't find any sharper DVDs of these films anywhere in the world.

 Ron Dunn adds 

I think its important to point out that the issue to which I refer is not the production values of the films presented. They are pristine copies that have been restored to a very high degree and are flawless in their presentation. However the definition has very much been scaled down to fit the limitations of the DVD standard.


The holy grail of cinema at home is to have as near to theatre style quality as possible. This is now possible with 4K large screen televisions. The original 35 mm films presented on the big screen have an effective resolution of 4K. So with UHD Blu-ray disks it is quite possible to obtain the same quality as the original films in the cinema.


The front of the DVD box of the definitive restorations has printed on it  “2K/4K from the original 35mm nitrate” 


These DVD's have an intrinsic resolution of 720×480 pixels (NTSC) and 720×540 pixels (PAL). Those pixels are either displayed in a 4:3 (standard) aspect ratio or a 16:9 (widescreen) aspect ratio. This is typically called 480p video. As you can see, 480p is a whole lot less than 1080p, and 1080p is a whole lot less than 4096p (4K)  So it is obvious that these films on this format cannot replicate or even come near the detailed High Definition quality of 4K.


I will await the eventual release of a UHD disc of thier movies so that I can enjoy all these films that I love in the quality that I first saw them as a child on the big screen at Saturday morning pictures.


While I am not the most technically-oriented guy, I do know that there are high-definition 4K Blu-ray discs, which require a special 4K player.  The "Definitive" discs are not these specific 4K discs.  They are standard Blu-ray discs.  In this case, the 2K or 4K refers to the quality of the transfer from 35mm film to a digital format.  

I have looked at the DVDs and Blu-rays on a number of different monitors and I am consistently impressed with the results that were achieved by the folks who did these transfers and cleanups.  I notice many details in the films which I have never seen before, in more than fifty years of watching them in various media.  (I worked for a solid year on this project, but my contribution was in providing commentaries and the supplemental photo galleries, interviews and music tracks.)