Beast Machines: Transformers-Season 1-Volume 1 (1999)

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Released 20-Jun-2007

Cover Art

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Animation None
Rating Rated PG
Year Of Production 1999
Running Time 123:35
RSDL / Flipper Dual Layered Cast & Crew
Start Up Ads Then Menu
Region Coding 2,4,5 Directed By George Samilski
Sebastian Brodin
Greg Donis
Raul Inglis

Sony Pictures Home Entertain
Starring None Given
Case ?
RPI ? Music Robert Buckley
William Gordon
Kenneth Sherman

Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame None English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio None
16x9 Enhancement No
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.33:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles English
English for the Hearing Impaired
Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement Yes, The toys are available in a store near you...
Action In or After Credits No

NOTE: The Profanity Filter is ON. Turn it off here.

Plot Synopsis

    Title of Show : Transformers - Beast Machines

    Title of Disc : Season 1 - Volume 1

    Year of Production : 1999

    Country of origin : Canada

    What's included? :  The first 6 episodes of the first season (There are 13 episodes in total in Season 1).

    Episode Length : About 20 minutes each.

    Details of episodes : 

This DVD includes six episodes which tell a continuing story

      1. The Reformatting
      2. Master of the House
      3. Fires of the Past
      4. Mercenary Pursuits
      5. Forbidden Fruit
      6. The Weak Component

    Style of Production : Computer Animation

    Premise of show : Beast Machines is a later entrant into the various Transformers series which have been regularly trotted out since the original series aired in the early 1980s. This series was a direct sequel to another Transformers series, Beast Wars and takes the main good guys from that series back to the Transformers home planet of Cybertron. They arrive back but have lost their memories and their powers to transform into robots. The four main good guys (The Maximals) hook up in the first episode and are stuck in the form of animals. They are Optimus Primal (a gorilla), Rattrap (a rat), Cheetor (a cheetah) & Black Arachnia (a spider). Cybertron is now controlled by Megatron and his army of robots called the Vehicons. The Maximals must evade Megatron's armies while they try to regain their power of transformation and work out what is going on.

    Age Group : 5-12

    Related to any other children's shows? : A direct sequel of Transformers : Beast Wars and obviously related to the original Transformers series (and all the other various sequels).

    Adult's view : This is a really average animated show with dodgy animation and bad dialogue. The episodes regularly make very little sense and a big serve of religious mysticism has been added to this show that was never in the original show. I find this very hard to watch whereas the original show is at least watchable. It was not well received by Transformers fans on its original release.

    Child's view : My young boys enjoy this disc. The like the fast moving action and are already fans of the Transformers concept. They seem to prefer the original series but also find this one enjoyable.

    Other Releases of this show available? : Both Seasons of this show have been released locally on DVD on four separate discs.

    Overall : Two hours of content but unfortunately it is hardly of great quality.

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Transfer Quality


    The video quality is very good.

    The feature is presented in a 1.33:1 aspect ratio non 16x9 enhanced which is the original aspect ratio (although I believe it was also produced for widescreen).

    The picture was quite clear and sharp throughout and with no evidence of low level noise. There was some minor macro blocking here and there.

    The colour was very bright and vibrant throughout.

    Artefacts included some jagged edges.

    There are subtitles in English and English for the Hearing Impaired along with 8 other languages. They are easy to read.


Video Ratings Summary
Shadow Detail
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts


    The audio quality is good.

    This DVD contains an English Dolby Digital 2.0 soundtrack encoded at 192 Kb/s.A track of the same format is also available in German. Although it is not encoded as surround, the original show had a surround soundtrack and the transfer here includes quite a bot of surround activity including some mild effects and atmosphere.

    Dialogue was clear and easy to understand and there was no problem with audio sync.

    The subwoofer added bass to music and effects.

Audio Ratings Summary
Audio Sync
Surround Channel Use




    The menus are still and silent but functional. A skippable anti-piracy ad precedes the menu.



R4 vs R1

NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.

     The Region 1 version is one set for all 26 episodes of this series over 4 discs. Extras include a commentary for one episode and a variety of interviews. It also has a Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack. Region 1 is the choice here.


    The first six episodes of a pretty average addition to the Transformers canon.

    The video quality is very good.

    The audio quality is good.

    No extras at all.

Ratings (out of 5)


© Daniel Bruce (Do you need a bio break?)
Saturday, July 12, 2008
Review Equipment
DVDPioneer DV667A DVD-V DVD-A SACD, using Component output
DisplaySony FD Trinitron Wega KV-AR34M36 80cm. Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL). This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 576i (PAL)/480i (NTSC).
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.
AmplificationPioneer VSX-511
SpeakersMonitor Audio Bronze 2 (Front), Bronze Centre & Bronze FX (Rears) + Sony SAW2500M Subwoofer

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