Andromeda-1.6 (2000)

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Released 28-Jun-2002

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Details At A Glance

General Extras
Category Science Fiction Main Menu Introduction
Menu Animation & Audio
Rating Rated M
Year Of Production 2000
Running Time 82:22
RSDL / Flipper No/No Cast & Crew
Start Up Menu
Region Coding 1,2,3,4,5,6 Directed By David Wining
T.J. Scott
Studio
Distributor

Beyond Home Entertainment
Starring Kevin Sorbo
Lisa Ryder
Keith Hamilton Cobb
Laura Bertram
Brent Stait
Gordon Michael Woolvett
Lexa Doig
Case C-Button-Version 2-Opaque
RPI $29.95 Music Alex Lifeson
Matthew McCauley


Video Audio
Pan & Scan/Full Frame Full Frame English Dolby Digital 2.0 (448Kb/s)
Widescreen Aspect Ratio None
16x9 Enhancement No
Video Format 576i (PAL)
Original Aspect Ratio 1.33:1 Miscellaneous
Jacket Pictures No
Subtitles None Smoking No
Annoying Product Placement No
Action In or After Credits No

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

Plot Synopsis

    Thankfully, the disappointment experienced while watching the previous two episodes appears to be limited to those episodes (so far). Here we return to the enjoyable, and in one case almost original, storyline. More importantly, the humour is back, making viewing a much more pleasurable experience.

111: The Pearls That Were His Eyes.

    While approaching a planet, the starship Andromeda comes into range of the local internet and downloads the crew's latest batch of email. One message for Beka, despite being three years old, is a distress call from her uncle Sid. Uncle Sid was a business partner of her father's and it looks like he is in trouble. Beka and Trance head off to see if he still needs rescuing. When they find him it turns out that he is now a very rich man running a huge shipping cartel, the very type of cartel that Beka's father used to rage against. Unfortunately for Beka, good old uncle Sid believes that she is hiding something that he wants to get his hands on, at any cost.

112: The Mathematics of Tears.

    Dylan is getting a little frustrated with the crew's lack of discipline. Beka tries to cheer Dylan up by suggesting that they go looking for another lost HighGuard ship. The missing ship is the Pax Magellanic, Rommie's sister ship. This means a lot where the ship is a living artificial intelligence. This episode has some interesting science fiction in it and the storyline depends on the slow discovery of what has happened to the ship and the effect this has had. This means that a plot synopsis would really spoil this episode, which is something that they should have thought of before they put the full storyline on the back cover.

Don't wish to see plot synopses in the future? Change your configuration.

Transfer Quality

Video

    The transfers are basically identical to the previous discs with the same good points and the same bad points.

    The transfer is presented at 1.33:1 and is not 16x9 enhanced.

    The sharpness of the live footage is excellent while the computer generated footage is still a little lacking. The depth of field is better in these episodes. Shadow detail remains good and there is no low level noise.

    Colours are excellent in the live footage and pretty good for the computer generated footage.

    There are no MPEG artefacts present nor any film to video artefacts. The ever-present problem with shimmering on horizontal lines can be seen on a couple of the exterior shots of the Andromeda but only on a big screen and only when you are looking closely. The tradition of excellent film masters continues with only a couple of spots present.

    There are no subtitles and this is a single layered disc.

Video Ratings Summary
Sharpness
Shadow Detail
Colour
Grain/Pixelization
Film-To-Video Artefacts
Film Artefacts
Overall

Audio

    The audio and in particular the surrounds have improved somewhat for these episodes. To be fair, there is more opportunity for the surrounds to be used in these episodes. There is one small audio glitch at 24:28 in episode 111. Uncle Sid is talking and he starts his sentence in the centre channel where he belongs, but half-way through he moves to the surrounds for the next three seconds. Then, the soundtrack jumps back to the centre channel.

    There is a single English Dolby Digital 2.0 soundtrack that appears to be surround encoded despite not being flagged as such.

    Dialogue quality is very good as is the audio sync.

    The music supports the script well and has a reasonable, although not great, soundstage.

    The surrounds were moderately used where they could be. They could have been far more active.

    The subwoofer was also slightly improved in usage but was still not greatly utilized.

Audio Ratings Summary
Dialogue
Audio Sync
Clicks/Pops/Dropouts
Surround Channel Use
Subwoofer
Overall

Extras

Menu

    The animated menus are basically the same as the last disc, with the new navigation remaining. Before there were two selections at the top of the screen, one to start each of the two episodes on the disc. On this disc, the top left selection is still there to start the first episode but the box on the right is no longer a selection and simply contains scrolling text. This means that you cannot directly select the second episode but must go through the chapter selection menu. Thank goodness you can skip the long intro section with the chapter next button.

R4 vs R1

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

    The first 5 episodes have finally been released in R1 allowing us to do a full comparison, and a very sad one it is.

    The Region 1 version consists of two discs with five episodes contained thereon.

    The Region 4 version of this disc misses out on;

    and that's just on the first disc. We continue with;

    and to really top off the list;

    The region 1 version of this disc misses out on;

    Even without the extras, the widescreen formatting makes the Region 1 version the hands-down winner.

Summary

    John de Lancie appears as an guest star in the first episode, The Pearls That Were His Eyes. I enjoyed his characterisation as Q in Star Trek: The Next Generation, and he does an equally good job here. His bio makes fascinating reading - he seems to have made a guest appearance in a great number of series.

    The video transfer remains solid.

    Audio has returned to an almost acceptable standard.

    There are still no extras.

Ratings (out of 5)

Video
Audio
Extras
Plot
Overall

© Terry McCracken (read my bio)
Wednesday, August 28, 2002
Review Equipment
DVDSkyworth 1050p progressive scan, using RGB output
DisplaySony 1252q CRT Projector, Screen Technics matte white screen 16:9 (223cm). Calibrated with AVIA Guide To Home Theatre. This display device is 16x9 capable.
Audio DecoderBuilt in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with AVIA Guide To Home Theatre.
AmplificationSony STR-DB1070
SpeakersB&W DM305 (mains); CC3 (centre); S100 (surrounds); custom Adire Audio Tempest with Redgum plate amp (subwoofer)

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