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Star Wars: The Force Awakens Discussion and Poll

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40 members have voted

  1. 1. Execution

    • 5 Stars
    • 4 Stars
    • 3 Stars
      0
    • 2 Stars
      0
    • 1 Star
      0
  2. 2. Recommendation



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So here's some screencaps.  Probably not the best......But it shows strong content down to almost 10Hz with occasional full band transients.

 

 

Did you get a screencap of when Kylo uses the force to stop and hold the blaster bolt around 7 min mark? As the camera pans past the bolt it sounded pretty good, not as good as the interrogation force moves but still good enough..

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BEQ Correction (implement prior to AVR, with HTPC software or nanoAVR):

 

LCRS:

 

1. Low shelf - 15Hz, Slope 1 (Q of 0.707), Gain +6dB

2. Low Shelf - 15Hz, Slope 1 (Q of 0.707), Gain +3dB

3. Parametric EQ - 85Hz, Q 1.12 (Bandwidth 1.25 Octaves), Gain +4dB

4. Overall Gain -7dB

 

LFE:

1. Low Shelf - 15Hz, Slope 1, (Q of 0.707), Gain +6dB

2. Low Shelf - 15Hz, Slope 1, (Q of 0.707), Gain +6dB

3. Low Shelf - 15Hz, Slope 1, (Q of 0.707), Gain +3dB

4. Parametric EQ - 70Hz, Q 1.12 (Bandwidth 1.25 Octaves), Gain +4dB

5. Overall Gain -7dB.

 

These changes will mean that Reference Level playback will occur at +7dBMV.  The track does not reach over 126.5dB peak level at this level of playback, and max RMS level is 119dB (over 1/8th sec), so if your system can handle Reference Level with very demanding material, it can handle this track at +7dBMV, provided your AVR does not clip the signal.

 

The track gains over a dB in Dynamics, Extension and Level become 5-Star Level if played back at +7dB from your typical listening level.  DO NOT add a house curve to this unless you know your system can handle it.  Adding a steep house curve will bloat the midbass and the score will sound unnatural.  This BEQ assumes a gentle (if any) house curve, maximum of -6 to -10dB downslope from 20Hz to 20kHz, with no aggressive slope-up in the midbass region.

 

JSS

 

Greetings,

 

Thanks for your work.  Will the gain in dB in Dynamics, Extension, and Level be had with the +7dB even without the BEQ adjustments?

 

Respects,

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If you playback the original soundtrack at +7dBRef, it will go up in Level, but not in Dynamics and Extension.  With the BEQ solution, you playback at +7dBRef to have dialogue at the same level as Ref (need to make headroom for the changes).  With the changes, Level goes up just a bit, and it just meets 5-Star.  Dynamics go up by over 1dB, and Extension is truly down to 1Hz.

 

BEQ is changing the FR curve of the entire soundtrack.  The +7dB is only to make headroom to do so.  If the BEQ track is played back at +7dBRef, it NEVER reaches a 7.1 WCS (128dB peak), but it does have one peak that is 126.5dB.  It also never asks for a sustained tone of more than 119dB, but plenty just below that.

 

You need to ensure your system does not clip and can handle this before you try BEQ at equivalent Reference Level.  If your system cannot handle the EoT intro with ease at Ref, do not play this back at +7dB.

 

JSS

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I watched both Star Trek reboot (2009) and Star Wars Force Awakens within the same week.  No question - I personally enjoyed the bass more on the Star Wars movie.  The Kylo Ren interrogation scenes were especially fun with nearfield sealed subs!  I knew there was sub 20hz content by feel, before I ever read about it.  I only get that sensation off the nearfield sealed subs.

 

5 star for the bass by my vote.  B+ on the movie itself.

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Have this waiting for me at home. Gives me something to look forward too. My mom was pregnant with me when she and my dad went to go see A New Hope.

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I will say 5 for the bass.  I enjoyed it very much.  But, I know this is not bass related, Kylo-Ren's voice with his mask on did not sound good to me.  Every other effect was fine . But I liked the sound track as a whole.  Besides his voice, which sounded distorted (could have been on purpose), I like the mix and thought it was good.  It was better than some of the ones that clip in a major way.

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I liked the movie. Nicely done and I'm not a big Star Wars fan. I've always liked the movies but I don't own any of them. However, I do own this one. I was pleasantly surprised with the amount of low end and the extension. I had my long time friend who loves Star Wars come over and he kept looking over at me smiling and saying "holy crap dude!" every time there was a good amount of bass in a scene. Two thumbs way up on this one. :)

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Really impressed with this track. Didn't think a lot about it at the theater the first time I saw it. Thought it sounded better the second time in a different theater. But, sounded nothing like it does in my HT. Really well done.

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The brick-wall limiting was reported here in the first post of this thread, among other places.  The image on that forum appears to provide an example of such limiting.  What I don't see in that post is actual data from the theatrical track to support the claim being made.  I would not be surprised to learn that the limiting is a "feature" exclusive to the home release, but I'd like to see some real evidence.  Indeed, I'd also like to see how the loudness compares, or at least the average levels.

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The biggest difference I noticed is that the dynamic range on the Blu-Ray is quite a bit narrower.  The theatrical viewing I saw ranged from comfortable level dialog scenes to almost rock concert levels during some of the big action effects.  However, I have strictly consumer level stuff in my HT so that might have something to do with the lack of range.

 

I suppose it is possible that they slapped this limiter on the home release in order to cheaply reduce the dynamic range, and assumed (correctly of course), that most purchasers do not have high enough fidelity of playback to notice the clipping (AKA the soundbar crowd).  I have a hard time believing that they would clip the signal this bad in the theatrical track, as the distortion would be pretty obvious at the volume level movies are run at.

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While I'm totally inclined to believe that the BD is dynamically crushed relative to the theatrical track, I'd love to see data if it were available.  It's weird though.  Lots of people here have said it's actually a nice soundtrack to listen to apart from a few obvious places where things got pushed too hard into the brick wall limiter, a soundtrack that is well above average at the very least.  What does this say about the sound quality of the average BD release?

 

Anyone heard about this:  http://variety.com/2016/film/news/studios-exhibitors-consider-revolutionary-plan-for-day-and-date-movies-at-home-exclusive-1201725168/

 

Assuming the business idea comes to light at all (discussions with studios are apparently on-going) I wouldn't be surprised if they delivered something closer to the DCP release, which means the soundtrack may be more likely to be the theatrical one, even if a near-field one was made.  For those of us with nice systems and a few friends that can share the $50 fee, it's kind of a no-brainer vs. going to the movie theater.  On the downside, the anti-piracy protections are likely to make it impossible to retain the movie or the soundtrack beyond the viewing period, something like a day or two.  If you want to watch it again, you may be stuck with the BD or a stream with a near-field mix.

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Well it is a nice soundtrack but it's not at all uncommon for the dynamic range of a typical home release to be restricted compared to a theatrical track.  That doesn't necessarily mean the quality suffers, especially if the compression is done right.

 

Not saying that TFA was done 'right' (we don't know where the home mix came from), but it's still above average in surround usage and low frequency variety.  So many action movies throw that generic BOOM on explosions and they all end up sounding the same (Spectre), whereas TFA throws a lot of different LFE effects in.  it reminded me a lot of Jupiter Ascending in that regard (although as a movie TFA is a lot better than JA).

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 it reminded me a lot of Jupiter Ascending in that regard (although as a movie TFA is a lot better than JA).

 

I had to sit being deafened in the front row to watch JA - honestly, enough with the excessively long and loud action scenes, and the lack of actual plot...  lol

 

I will buy it when it is super-cheap - it does not warrant paying even half price for! :D

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Well it is a nice soundtrack but it's not at all uncommon for the dynamic range of a typical home release to be restricted compared to a theatrical track.  That doesn't necessarily mean the quality suffers, especially if the compression is done right.

 

Done 'right' or not, compression always degrades quality, IMO.  

 

JSS

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Screening room sounds interesting, but my guess would be what we sometimes get on BD.....the compressed kid's table mix.  I bet lots of folks would buy it to watch it on their 4k screens with HTIB sound.

 

JSS

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True....I have been to some truly garbage theaters in the last 5 yrs.  Strangely enough, the local '2nd run' cinema has the best sound system in town (THX certification current on 1 auditorium), followed by a true IMAX about 1hr away.

 

JSS

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I wish I knew of a good theater around here.  I guess I'd have to travel a lot and endure a lot of crappy presentations.  The real problem is consistency.  My first visit to the Regal RPX with Atmos was very good.  I think they were running at reference, and the system and room handled it with grace.  The imaging was rather poor, but the sound was immersive.  Then I saw another movie and they somehow forgot to not play all the commercials and trailers at reference level.  I now always bring ear plugs with me, to make sure I don't miss the dialog at the beginning of movies because my ears are still recovering.  I went there to see "Star Wars", and the imaging was actually quite good for a change at my regular center 2/3s seat, but I don't think they played it at reference level.  I know for sure it didn't sound as loud as what I play at home.  That's kind of sad when you think about it.

 

The worst is when it's really loud but the quality is terrible.  Like, some idiot jacked the sub 20 dB, so every action scene is full of clipping.  Or the speakers are broken or way under-specified, or under-amped.  Or they trusted Audyssey to automatically calibrate the response.  (Ahem, LieMix.)  Or maybe a knob got bumped somehow and no one bothered to recalibrate it in 10 years.  And that's probably a reason (other than loudness in the content) why most theaters are run below reference.  Because if you have to aim too high or low, too low is less likely to be offensive.

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Watched this today, and luckily I decided to check one scene yesterday, planned to not do any re-eq because it will probably sound good enough out-of-the-box..

 

N O T .

 

The advice from maxmercy is spot on, there is a huge boost 30-40hz, rather lame upper bass, and the ulf is too low in level.

Bass-EQ fixed it, I only fixed lfe, modest low ulf boost and a cut around the 30-40hz booooom.

The result is a somewhat balanced bass, with lots of real ulf, many scenes where you can not hear bass all, it is only felt as the earth literally moves.

Actually my modest ulf boost was a little too much, and I suspect maxmercys beq sound very heavy on the low end.

 

Dialogue is destroyed by use of compression/limiter, easily heard when you have a system with resolution and capacity.

 

Most transients in sound effects are clipped and distorted, also easily heard when you have a system with resolution and capacity.

From the waveforms it can be seen that there is 3dB headroom on lcr, which could - AND SHOULD - be used to avoid some of the clipping and distortion.

 

This pretty much sums up the current status of sound for movies.

Thanks for the effort, but it could easily have been so much better if they had decent sound monitoring systems in the studios, with resolution, capacity and full frequency range.

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Yes, My BEQ solution is only for folks that do not use a heavily sloped house curve below 100Hz.  Some of the Falcon's scenes are downright seismic.

 

What is strange is that when the TIE Fighter explodes under the sand, no clipping.  NONE.  I just wish they could have made the whole film like that.

 

JSS

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As far as bass goes, it was interesting to listen to, but I felt that the audio engineering/mix was a bit off. With that said, I am a huge star wars fan thanks to my brother in law.

I give it a 5 star.

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