• Register
  • TOS
  • Privacy
  • @NeoGAF
  • Like

Jaeger
Member
(06-08-2015, 04:28 AM)
Jaeger's Avatar
Anyone collect/still have their player? I recently got interested in LD again, and decided to invest in a unit and some movies/shows. However I have next to no knowledge of them. So I'm looking for some info/help before I make my next move.

- What are the best units out there? I'm really only concerned with playback, but recording functions is a bonus.
- What is the price I should be looking to spend on a player?
- Same for the actual disc. I'm sure it depends on what it is, but any ballpark figures are more than appreciated.

Thanks for the help. I would love to grab some of my favorite films and anime on the format. Talk about a nostalgia-trip.
HUELEN10
Banned
(06-08-2015, 04:32 AM)
Laserdisc is a great format to get into, but for a newbie, I have these tips.

1. Laser rot is real; inspect discs before buying.

2. For a beginner, I would actually make my purchase based on the remote I like; SUPER SERIOUS!

Why? Laser disc has this truly awesome fluid fine-grained analog seeking that you can really take advantage of with a remote with proper tension toggle wheel!

3. If you don't get a high-end player, get used to flipping the disc in the middle of a film.

4. S-video is a must; get a player with it if you can!

5. Clean your discs only with a lint free microfiber cloth and distiller water!
Jaeger
Member
(06-08-2015, 04:41 AM)
Jaeger's Avatar

Originally Posted by HUELEN10

Laserdisc is a great format to get into, but for a newbie, I have these tips.

1. Laser rot is real; inspect discs before buying.

2. For a beginner, I would actually make my purchase based on the remote I like; SUPER SERIOUS!

Why? Laser disc has this truly awesome fluid fine-grained analog seeking that you can really take advantage of with a remote with proper tension toggle wheel!

3. If you don't get a high-end player, get used to flipping the disc in the middle of a film.

4. S-video is a must; get a player with it if you can!

5. Clean your discs only with a lint free microfiber cloth and distiller water!

Great information. I appreciate that. What are the high end players you would recommend? I am definitely prepared to spend where I need to spend.
Corpsepyre
Member
(06-08-2015, 04:51 AM)
Corpsepyre's Avatar
What resolution did LDs display at? Also, were the movies in surround sound?
Jaeger
Member
(06-08-2015, 05:02 AM)
Jaeger's Avatar

Originally Posted by Corpsepyre

What resolution did LDs display at? Also, were the movies in surround sound?

Here is some general info on LD. Pretty informative. And yes, as far as I recall they do support Surround Sound.
Dpp1978
Junior Member
(06-08-2015, 05:06 AM)

Originally Posted by HUELEN10


4. S-video is a must; get a player with it if you can!

Laserdisc uses composite video and the quality of the S-Video signal it outputs is dependent on the quality of its comb filter. The comb filter separates the composite signal into chroma and luma (basically colour and brightness) and sends them to the display separately. This is, in most cases, a better connection, but with composite sources there is a significant caveat.

Your TV may well have a better comb filter than the player. If so it will do a better job of processing the image and you should use the player's component output for the best quality image. If the player's comb filter is better us S-Video.

In any case the image you get from laserdisc is lower quality than DVD, even with a top of the line player. They are fun, I still have my player and some discs, but merely a novelty at this point.
Krejlooc
Banned
(06-08-2015, 05:07 AM)
Yes! I just recently bought a LD-W1 from Pioneer. It's the only laser disc player they ever made that supported two discs at once, for 4-side continuous playback. Very rare and expensive.

Sadly, my unit is breaking. The motor inside is wearing out. When I first got it, it worked fine. Then, slowly, the drive stopped coming out. Now I can't really change discs anymore.
Bobby Roberts
Banned
(06-08-2015, 05:08 AM)

Originally Posted by Corpsepyre

What resolution did LDs display at? Also, were the movies in surround sound?

A lot of films were surround encoded, yeah. Some of them even did Dolby Digital 5.1 and DTS 5.1.

Resolution is more or less 400i. More often than not it's best to just use the yellow RCA cable for your video as opposed to the S-video cables.

The Laserdisc Database is a really good source of information on discs, versions, specs, all that.

The Laser Guru is also a really, really good one-stop resource, answers a lot of questions a lot of LD owners (both new and old) will have, and also I believe lists a lot of recommended players that you can then go and try to find on ebay or craigslist (but most of the good ones are somewhere north of $100-150 now, unfortunately.
thefit
Banned
(06-08-2015, 05:10 AM)
thefit's Avatar
I used to collect CED's still have my player stored away.
Krakn3Dfx
Member
(06-08-2015, 05:14 AM)
Krakn3Dfx's Avatar
Still have my Pioneer flipperDVD combo unit, but I've dumped off a lot of my movies over the years. Still have the Japanese import of Army of Darkness and about a dozen other collectibles though. Loved LD and was way more impressed with it back in the day than I ever have been with newer media.
kitschykitty
Member
(06-08-2015, 05:16 AM)
kitschykitty's Avatar
I own one laserdisc and it's a Japanese copy of Jurassic Park, I don't even own a laser disc player but I mean it was 100 Yen how could I say no?
Jaeger
Member
(06-08-2015, 05:26 AM)
Jaeger's Avatar

Originally Posted by Dpp1978

Laserdisc uses composite video and the quality of the S-Video signal it outputs is dependent on the quality of its comb filter. The comb filter separates the composite signal into chroma and luma (basically colour and brightness) and sends them to the display separately. This is, in most cases, a better connection, but with composite sources there is a significant caveat.

Your TV may well have a better comb filter than the player. If so it will do a better job of processing the image and you should use the player's component output for the best quality image. If the player's comb filter is better us S-Video.

In any case the image you get from laserdisc is lower quality than DVD, even with a top of the line player. They are fun, I still have my player and some discs, but merely a novelty at this point.

Good to see a few of you into this. I am excited about this. I'm just a collector by nature, and I use all my retro electronics often. This will be used on my main TV in the living room. I want to get alot of movies, and I will have to check my local Goodwill and Thrift Stores before I bid on a player on eBay tomorrow.

I want to get mostly Science fiction, Horror, and Anime for this starting out.

Originally Posted by BobbyRoberts

A lot of films were surround encoded, yeah. Some of them even did Dolby Digital 5.1 and DTS 5.1.

Resolution is more or less 400i. More often than not it's best to just use the yellow RCA cable for your video as opposed to the S-video cables.

The Laserdisc Database is a really good source of information on discs, versions, specs, all that.

The Laser Guru is also a really, really good one-stop resource, answers a lot of questions a lot of LD owners (both new and old) will have, and also I believe lists a lot of recommended players that you can then go and try to find on ebay or craigslist (but most of the good ones are somewhere north of $100-150 now, unfortunately.

Thanks for the links! I am doing as much research as possible right now. Want to make sure I get exactly what I need.
NoFaceNico
Banned
(06-08-2015, 05:34 AM)
As far as LaserDisc collecting, my tips are:

1. Go find box sets to your favorite movies! LaserDisc always got the coolest shit.



2. Keep an eye out for Criterion release versions. They usually have cool artwork and bonus stuff inside the sleeves, sometimes it's stuff that never made it to the DVD release.

3. Be mindful that there are usually multiple versions of the same film released and sometimes they have differences. I think I own like three versions of Lawrence of Arabia. Another example is the sleeve for Jurassic Park. Only the letterbox version opens up to a really nice image of the Jurassic Park gates. But I appreciate stuff like that because I'm a dork.

4. Also I like to pick up any movies released under the earlier brand name for LaserDisc- "DISCOVISION"



Aw, hell yeah!!
AlteredBeast
Fork 'em, Sparky!
(06-08-2015, 06:16 AM)
AlteredBeast's Avatar
Lol, I just bought my first Laserdisc a couple of weeks ago. I heard it got the release closest to theatrical for the Last of the Mohicans, so I found a copy on eBay for 1.99 and snatched it up. Now I just need to find a cheap player!

In lieu of finding a player, I can now morally defend my decision to downloading a homebrew version of the movie via torrent, since I own 3 legitimate versions of the movie.

Damn Michael Mann for not putting out the theatrical version on Blu-ray...

I would love putting a collection together on the cheap if I can find a cheap flipper unit.
Stinkles
Clothed, sober, cooperative
(06-08-2015, 06:19 AM)
Stinkles's Avatar
Garage and estate sales often have gems.
Lace
Member
(06-08-2015, 06:25 AM)
Lace's Avatar

Originally Posted by AlteredBeast

Lol, I just bought my first Laserdisc a couple of weeks ago. I heard it got the release closest to theatrical for the Last of the Mohicans, so I found a copy on eBay for 1.99 and snatched it up. Now I just need to find a cheap player!

In lieu of finding a player, I can now morally defend my decision to downloading a homebrew version of the movie via torrent, since I own 3 legitimate versions of the movie.

Damn Michael Mann for not putting out the theatrical version on Blu-ray...

I would love putting a collection together on the cheap if I can find a cheap flipper unit.

I don't think that word means what you think it means. Torrenting a movie you own in another format seems like a gray area at best.

On topic, I don't really understand collecting laserdisc. Won't the discs begin to rot soon or can that be avoided.
AlteredBeast
Fork 'em, Sparky!
(06-08-2015, 06:28 AM)
AlteredBeast's Avatar

Originally Posted by Lace

I don't think that word means what you think it means. Torrenting a movie you own in another format seems like a gray area at best.

On topic, I don't really understand collecting laserdisc. Won't the discs begin to rot soon or can that be avoided.

I say homebrew because people have had to literally string different sources and versions together to get within the closest approximation to the original release, including color correction, sound mixing and leveling, etc. If that isn't homebrew t type effort, I don't know what is. Gray area it might be, but I feel justified by it.
Hero_of_the_Day
Member
(06-08-2015, 06:29 AM)
Hero_of_the_Day's Avatar
My Dad just recently gave me his player and collection. Got a decent chunk of stuff I'll have to post pics of next time I'm home. Number one on my list of shit to get is Star Wars in widescreen.
HUELEN10
Banned
(06-08-2015, 06:30 AM)

Originally Posted by Stinkles

Garage and estate sales often have gems.

This this THIS!
jtb
Banned
(06-08-2015, 06:32 AM)
jtb's Avatar
What's the advantages to Laserdisc? My dad used to have a decent collection, but I think he sold most of them. Still has the Star Wars OT trilogy, though... collecting dust somewhere.
HUELEN10
Banned
(06-08-2015, 06:33 AM)

Originally Posted by jtb

What's the advantages to Laserdisc? My dad used to have a decent collection, but I think he sold most of them. Still has the Star Wars OT trilogy, though... collecting dust somewhere.

Better art, best seeking ever, better audio, and content not available on other formats all come to mind.

Batman Returns, Star Trek VI, Independence Day; all must-sees on LD.
dallow_bg
nods at old men
(06-08-2015, 06:35 AM)
dallow_bg's Avatar
I only collect Morrissey laserdiscs, haha.
kris.
Banned
(06-08-2015, 06:36 AM)
My uncle had a pretty impressive collection, but it was all destroyed in a flood a few years ago. I watched Street Fighter on laserdisc I dunno how many times when I was little.
HTupolev
Member
(06-08-2015, 06:38 AM)
HTupolev's Avatar

Originally Posted by BobbyRoberts

Resolution is more or less 400i.

No. People often confuse numbers like 480i/480p/1080p/whatever with TVL.

The former is based on the vertical scan behavior. All NTSC sources are 480i, all PAL sources are 576i, etc. That includes LaserDisc and even VHS.

The latter describes the clarity of the analog signal that makes up each line of video, and is a description of horizontal resolution.

An NTSC LaserDisc is 480i and is usually claimed to have a TVL of a little over 400.
dallow_bg
nods at old men
(06-08-2015, 06:47 AM)
dallow_bg's Avatar
Anyone collect D-VHS?

I used to have a player. Was neat to have HD movies in video cassette format.


AlteredBeast
Fork 'em, Sparky!
(06-08-2015, 06:49 AM)
AlteredBeast's Avatar

Originally Posted by dallow_bg

Anyone collect D-VHS?

I used to have a player. Was neat to have HD movies in video cassette format.

Heard about these some time ago, but never know they were a real available-to-purchase reality consumer good. How was the quality? Degradation over time a problem?
ridley182
aka Mister Chef
(06-08-2015, 06:49 AM)
Man, this is cool. Too bad I have too many hobbies already.
Bobby Roberts
Banned
(06-08-2015, 06:58 AM)

Originally Posted by BobbyRoberts

Resolution is more or less 400i. More often than not it's best to just use the yellow RCA cable for your video as opposed to the S-video cables.

Originally Posted by HTupolev

No...

An NTSC LaserDisc is 480i and is usually claimed to have a TVL of a little over 400.

So... more or less 400i, then. The "more or less" is there to give a general idea to a newcomer to the format without getting into the shit you just got into because, via the links I provided, he'll get around to learning that sort of stuff in detail without me throwing a whole bunch of numbers at him upfront. It's not technically accurate but it creates an image in the guy's mind as to what kind of picture to expect: A slightly fuzzier version of a non-anamorphic DVD.

I guess I probably just shoulda said that as a loose approximation instead.

Originally Posted by jtb

What's the advantages to Laserdisc? My dad used to have a decent collection, but I think he sold most of them. Still has the Star Wars OT trilogy, though... collecting dust somewhere.

As Huelen said, it's mostly the collector aspect. Big-ass slipcovers, the special editions are *really* tricked out from a packaging standpoint, and sometimes, there are in fact cuts you can't get on DVD or Blu, although that's not really the case so much.

But from an A/V standpoint, there aren't any real advantages anymore. There were in the days of VHS. Not so much now.

Although some still swear the soundtracks for some LDs are better than their DVD or Blu counterparts. That's a lot harder to claim with blu-ray, though.
Timeless
Member
(06-08-2015, 07:03 AM)
I want a LaserDisc player just to rip the uncensored version of Who Framed Roger Rabbit.

http://www.movie-censorship.com/report.php?ID=545028

Then I'm sure there are a small number of movies that never made it to DVD, iTunes / digital stores, or Blu-Ray, so LD would be the highest available quality.
Bobby Roberts
Banned
(06-08-2015, 07:07 AM)

Originally Posted by Timeless

I want a LaserDisc player just to rip the uncensored version of Who Framed Roger Rabbit.

Found that at a Goodwill for $3 bucks a few years ago. Haven't actually watched it, though.

Most recently put in my old 1985 pan & scan release of Empire Strikes Back for the 35th anniversary last month. It was time compressed, so every now and again, their voices would speed up.

Reminded me a LOT of watching it on an old VHS tape a family friend had used to tape it off HBO way back in the day.

I have a Pioneer CLD-D504, which was midrange when it came out. When I got it (garage sale on Craigslist) it (and a crate of discs) was like 60 bucks. Now its one of the more common autoflip models available on ebay, but it's hard to find one on sale for less than $150+ shipping.
Wag
Junior Member
(06-08-2015, 07:10 AM)
Wag's Avatar

Originally Posted by dallow_bg

Anyone collect D-VHS?

I used to have a player. Was neat to have HD movies in video cassette format.


Yeah, I had a JVC DVHS deck for many years. I had many recordings off of Firewire (on SVHS tapes with holes poked in them) from my cable box but one day I had a power outage and my DVHS deck's PSU didn't recover. 😢 By that time Blu-Ray was long out and I decided just to forget about DVHS and move on.
HTupolev
Member
(06-08-2015, 07:13 AM)
HTupolev's Avatar

Originally Posted by BobbyRoberts

So... more or less 400i, then.

No, "400i" is a misleading way to describe it, not simply approximate. I know because I've been in the position of trying to work this stuff out before. The use of that type of verbiage is a nightmare for anyone trying to learn about video formats, since even well-formulated google searches lead to loads of whacky rubbish.

The "more or less" is there to give a general idea to a newcomer to the format without getting into the shit you just got into because, via the links I provided, he'll get around to learning that sort of stuff in detail

Your links don't help much at all in elucidating the resolution of the LaserDisc format.
Bobby Roberts
Banned
(06-08-2015, 07:17 AM)

Originally Posted by HTupolev

No, "400i" is a misleading way to describe it, not simply approximate.

Your links don't help much at all in elucidating the resolution of the LaserDisc format.

Okay.
JDeluis
Member
(06-08-2015, 07:44 AM)
JDeluis's Avatar

Originally Posted by dallow_bg

Anyone collect D-VHS?

I used to have a player. Was neat to have HD movies in video cassette format.


I have a JVC HM-DH30000U. I purchased a store model that didn't include a remote (still waiting for one to show up cheap on ebay) for around $300 I believe. I would use it to record HD content from cable, mostly concerts. Had about 8 movies I purchased and recently got lucky and found about a dozen movies I didn't own for $1 each at the swapmeet(flee market)

The best part about D-VHS is that I owned a copy of True Lies which still hasn't been released on blu-ray and only a non-anamorphic version is available on DVD in region 1.
kess
Member
(06-08-2015, 07:47 AM)
kess's Avatar
Sony laserdisc players were almost always finicky creatures despite having advanced features. Pioneer players are nice, but finding a higher-end model can be a challenge. The best units save a screen frame to memory so you can view a still image when paused (CAV discs can do this natively). I used a model like this to study animation in slow motion. Laserdisc is a wonderful resource for uncompressed, frame-by-frame film study, but most of them are on CLV discs. Lower end units usually have a lot of noise on the red channel and blurry images on paused CAV frames.

Until Pioneer took over most laserdisc distribution in the US, a lot of laserdisc releases looked hardly better than their VHS counterparts (the infamous "Discovision").

There's still a ton of insane, weird stuff from the 30s that no one ever really bothered bringing to any other format, although Warner Brothers has recently been putting Vitaphone shorts on DVD sets as of late. Roan, Criterion, and Image usually put a lot of effort into their releases. Disney even put out a bunch of special editions that come with animation cels and other fun stuff. I have a Roan release that comes with a fantastic, full size booklet with the posters and promotional art, and a written commentary about the movie. And these things are so cheap.

Laser rot is real, I recently had to chuck a nice 80s copy of the movie "M" because I could see through the disc.
Bobby Roberts
Banned
(06-08-2015, 07:57 AM)
Panasonic players (the 600U and the 1000) are supposed to be really good, as well

I believe Marantz used to essentially rebadge Pioneer models, too.
kess
Member
(06-08-2015, 08:03 AM)
kess's Avatar

Originally Posted by BobbyRoberts

I believe Marantz used to essentially rebadge Pioneer models, too.

Yeah, CD/LDs players were one of the ways they tried to hook the quality home theater/audiophile crowd. I think a good laserdisc player requires specs that are much better than your run of the mill CD player. In fact, some boutique audio manufactures tried selling modified LD players for insane price markups.
Bobby Roberts
Banned
(06-08-2015, 08:07 AM)
I lucked out and got a Marantz amp at Goodwill that could natively decode the RF Dolby Digital signals. Wanted to find a Marantz LD player that matched it, until I found out most Marantz players were just rebadged midline Pioneers.
Krejlooc
Banned
(06-08-2015, 08:08 AM)
So - about my LD-W1. I don't want to give it up, it's an awesome player. Anybody know where I could possibly ship mine to get fixed?
Wag
Junior Member
(06-08-2015, 08:10 AM)
Wag's Avatar

Originally Posted by JDeluis

I have a JVC HM-DH30000U. I purchased a store model that didn't include a remote (still waiting for one to show up cheap on ebay) for around $300 I believe. I would use it to record HD content from cable, mostly concerts. Had about 8 movies I purchased and recently got lucky and found about a dozen movies I didn't own for $1 each at the swapmeet(flee market)

The best part about D-VHS is that I owned a copy of True Lies which still hasn't been released on blu-ray and only a non-anamorphic version is available on DVD in region 1.

That's the one I had. Like I said it died after a power outage and I dumped all the tapes. 😢
lovely ladies
Member
(06-08-2015, 08:10 AM)
lovely ladies's Avatar
There was such a thing as a laserdisc recorder?
Krejlooc
Banned
(06-08-2015, 08:12 AM)

Originally Posted by lovely ladies

There was such a thing as a laserdisc recorder?

Yup, they pop up on ebay from time to time. They weren't usually sold to the public. Blank LDs are hard to find, too.
Bobby Roberts
Banned
(06-08-2015, 08:14 AM)

Originally Posted by Krejlooc

So - about my LD-W1. I don't want to give it up, it's an awesome player. Anybody know where I could possibly ship mine to get fixed?

Man, good luck. There's a single shop in Portland that still services LD players. I took in a CLD-D704 a couple years ago... and they couldn't get parts. I ended up just leaving it there.
ResidentDante
Member
(06-08-2015, 08:15 AM)
ResidentDante's Avatar

Originally Posted by dallow_bg

Anyone collect D-VHS?

I used to have a player. Was neat to have HD movies in video cassette format.


What in the world?! I've never heard about this! How does the quality hold up?
Krejlooc
Banned
(06-08-2015, 08:15 AM)

Originally Posted by BobbyRoberts

Man, good luck. There's a single shop in Portland that still services LD players. I took in a CLD-D704 a couple years ago... and they couldn't get parts. I ended up just leaving it there.

I think it's just the motor. Maybe? I'm terrified of opening it myself.

The LD-W1 is one of the most sought after models because, like I said, it can play 4 continuous sides. It cost me a mint to pick up in the first place.

I wouldn't even mind paying an arm and a leg to get it fixed, I just want to keep it in working order.
Bobby Roberts
Banned
(06-08-2015, 08:18 AM)

Originally Posted by Krejlooc

I think it's just the motor. Maybe? I'm terrified of opening it myself.

I know the feeling. I successfully performed spindle surgery on my 504 awhile ago. Sweating bullets.

I hope you find a spot. It would suck for one of the rarer beasts out there to shuffle off this vintage electronics coil.
lovely ladies
Member
(06-08-2015, 08:23 AM)
lovely ladies's Avatar

Originally Posted by Krejlooc

Yup, they pop up on ebay from time to time. They weren't usually sold to the public. Blank LDs are hard to find, too.

The thing looks like it weighs 40 lbs. lol. Laserdiscs used to have coolest packaging for their special editions, my dad used to have quite a bunch. I remember the Godfather and SW ones being cool as shit.

Originally Posted by ResidentDante

What in the world?! I've never heard about this! How does the quality hold up?

Same here, I have never heard of a D-VHS prior to stepping in this thread.
HUELEN10
Banned
(06-08-2015, 08:26 AM)

Originally Posted by ResidentDante

What in the world?! I've never heard about this! How does the quality hold up?

It's perfect and crystal clear. Imagine MPEG-2 1080i on a 34 inch Sony Wega TRINITRON 1080i tube...

It's bliss.
Bobby Roberts
Banned
(06-08-2015, 08:40 AM)

Originally Posted by lovely ladies

Laserdiscs used to have coolest packaging for their special editions

Seriously, Laserdisc Special Editions are on some SHIT.

I've got:

The Wizard Of Oz
Beatles Anthology
Rocky Horror Picture Show
Godfather Trilogy
Star Wars Trilogy: Definitive Edition
Fantasia
Dawn of the Dead
E.T.
Nightmare Before Christmas

And the packaging/extras are fucking ridiculous. I'm not talking documentaries, I'm talking stuff like animation cels, frames of film, full-color production books, CD soundtracks encased in their own velveteen cradles... Laserdisc went all out in ways DVD & Blu-Ray still don't. Sure, you can buy an Alien head or an Apes bust with a bunch of discs in 'em, but it's not quite the same as lifting the lid of a 12"x12" box and pulling out a bunch of liner notes, an essay, a bound hardcover book, and a soundtrack.

That's not even getting into the Criterion Collection...
lovely ladies
Member
(06-08-2015, 08:59 AM)
lovely ladies's Avatar

Originally Posted by BobbyRoberts

Seriously, Laserdisc Special Editions are on some SHIT.

I've got:

The Wizard Of Oz
Beatles Anthology
Rocky Horror Picture Show
Godfather Trilogy
Star Wars Trilogy: Definitive Edition
Fantasia
Dawn of the Dead
E.T.
Nightmare Before Christmas

And the packaging/extras are fucking ridiculous. I'm not talking documentaries, I'm talking stuff like animation cels, frames of film, full-color production books, CD soundtracks encased in their own velveteen cradles... Laserdisc went all out in ways DVD & Blu-Ray still don't. Sure, you can buy an Alien head or an Apes bust with a bunch of discs in 'em, but it's not quite the same as lifting the lid of a 12"x12" box and pulling out a bunch of liner notes, an essay, a bound hardcover book, and a soundtrack.

That's not even getting into the Criterion Collection...

This is all true, most of them just looked more professional and not like you're showcasing some stupid cheap toy like today's dvd and blu ray collector's editions.

Thread Tools