Main Menu Introduction
Menu Animation & Audio
|Year Of Production||2000|
|RSDL / Flipper||No/No||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||1,2,3,4,5,6||Directed By||
Beyond Home Entertainment
Keith Hamilton Cobb
Gordon Michael Woolvett
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||Full Frame||English Dolby Digital 2.0 (448Kb/s)|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||None|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||1.33:1||Miscellaneous|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
The first of the two episodes on this disc is a little disappointing - the characterisation that I loved in Tyr has been stepped down a notch. Whereas before he acted exactly as his nature directed, in this episode the writers have taken the easy path, one where the fierce and combative warrior has a soft side. This combined with an ending that defies any logic is not good. The second episode thankfully is much better and is quite enjoyable. Two episodes like this side by side on the same disc make it hard to decide on the overall rating of the disc.
113: Music of a Distant Drum.
Tyr is off on his own for most of this episode. The episode starts with Tyr crash landing the Eureka Maru on an unknown planet. For some reason he has lost all personal memories. He is rescued by a local human family, one that has suffered at the hands of the Nietzcheans, in particular the Dragon clan who claim ownership of the planet and all who live on it. Tyr discovers that on board the Eureka Maru is a strange box with a very complex lock including a voice-activated password that he cannot remember. There must be something important in the box because he is pursued by the Dragon clan. As Tyr's memory slowly returns, the rest of the crew on the Andromeda track Tyr's movements and arrive at the planet in question just as things are getting interesting.
114: Harper 2.0
On the way back from a shopping trip in the Eureka Maru, Beka and Harper discover a wounded Perseid. The Perseid is dying and just before he pops off he does something very strange to Harper's neck, just where his data port is situated. During this process, an incredible amount of information is downloaded into Harper who begins to act more than a little strangely. Unfortunately for Harper, there is a strange being and a bounty hunter after that information, and they have no qualms about how they retrieve the information. During this episode, the mystery of Trance deepens with an obscure reference to her native language.
The transfers are basically identical to that of previously reviewed discs with the same good and bad points.
The transfer is presented at an aspect ratio of 1.33:1 and is not 16x9 enhanced.
Sharpness of the live footage is excellent and the computer-generated material appears to be on the improve, this time just about matching the live footage. Depth of field remains good in these episodes. Shadow detail is also 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 are there any film to video artefacts. The problem with the 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 on this single layered disc.
The audio remains acceptable for these two episodes with a further marginal improvement in the bass.
On offer is again 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. Yet again there are some missed opportunities.
The subwoofer was also slightly improved in usage but was still not great.
|Surround Channel Use|
The animated menus are basically the same as the last disc, with the new navigation remaining. Previously, 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.
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 is presented as two discs with five episodes.
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.
Despite the disappointment of the first episode on this disc, this is still an improvement over Episodes 9 and 10. I do hope that they manage to sort out the character of Tyr as he was the one with the greatest depth of character. I am actually looking forward to further revelations about Trance and hope that they don't waste this opportunity.
The quality of the video transfer remains solid.
The audio is just acceptable for a surround encoded effort.
There are still no extras.
|DVD||Skyworth 1050p progressive scan, using RGB output|
|Display||Sony 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 Decoder||Built in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with AVIA Guide To Home Theatre.|
|Speakers||B&W DM305 (mains); CC3 (centre); S100 (surrounds); custom Adire Audio Tempest with Redgum plate amp (subwoofer)|