Def Leppard-Visualize/Video Archive (1993)
Menu Animation & Audio
|Year Of Production||1993|
|RSDL / Flipper||RSDL (21:32)||Cast & Crew|
|Start Up||Language Select Then Menu|
|Region Coding||2,4||Directed By||
Universal Pictures Home Video
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||Full Frame||English Dolby Digital 2.0 (192Kb/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||Yes|
What we have presented here are two separate titles that are basically divided into four major sections. These are:
For any fan of this ever-popular band, this is the completion of a fine collection of material on the music and life of Def Leppard. Along with the aforementioned companion title and Classic Albums disc, all bases are covered so far, but probably not for long. With the band releasing an album in mid 2002 called X, we are probably destined to see a disc of material from this work as well. All I can say is "Bring It On!".
|1. Rocket (video, live)|
2. Let's get Rocked (video, live)
3. Make Love like a Man (video)
4. I Wanna Touch U (video)
5. Have You Ever Needed Someone..(vid)
6. Tonight (video)
7. Heaven Is (video)
8. Stand Up (Kick Love..) (video)
9. Two Steps Behind (vid,live,acoustc)
10. Love Bites (live)
|11. Photograph (live)|
12. Foolin' (live)
13. Armageddon It (live, acoustic)
14. Pour Some Sugar on Me (live,acustc)
15. Rock of Ages (live)
16. When Love and Hate..(vidx2,acoustc)
17. Action (video)
18. Miss You in a Heartbeat (video)
19. Animal (acoustic)
20. Ziggy Stardust (acoustic)
The level of sharpness seen on this disc varies quite a bit from section to section. Most of the music videos are reasonably clear, but there are quite a few things wrong with some of the video of the live concerts. The result is that the image ranges from clear to hazy from song to song. Shadow detail is okay within the limitations of the original source materials. Much of the material was shot at night and in darkened rooms, so expecting huge amounts of shadow detail may be demanding too much, but what we do get is fair and completely expected given the conditions in which the footage was shot. Low level noise didn't seem to be a real problem.
Colour use is fairly natural and quite acceptable during the majority of this title with the exception of the live concert portion of the programming where there are so many artefacts as to render the accurate portrayal of colour an almost impossibility.
MPEG artefacts are a minor problem at times with some fairly minor pixelization seen at times, but macroblocking is present as well and can be seen at 82:56. Aliasing is visible during most of the live concert footage as well as other places with examples at 56:03 and 65:51. Sadly, edge enhancement seems to be a fan of the band as well and couldn't bear to stay away. It can be seen at 67:59 as well as in numerous other places during this feature. There are numerous analogue tracking errors visible with the main problem not so much a tracking error as analogue tracking 'evidence' as is visible at 47:47 and 82:56. There is also some fairly ordinary source material used as on display at 50:49. This is not too much of an issue as this may have been the only available copy of the material (as is the case with much of the archival footage used in these titles). Cross coloration is a real problem with this title and can be seen in abundance during the live concert videos (67:34 for example) as well as in background footage (see 24:59). There is some film grain seen at times during some of the footage used. The video for Rocket (from 2:30) displays a bit of grain, but this is no real problem.
There are four subtitle options for this feature; French, German, Spanish and Italian. Bear in mind that these only are useful during the various interview portions on the disc and are not visible during each video feature, which is unfortunate for those fans of the band whose first language is not English as well as the fans that may have long since lost their hearing (thanks, Ed).
While much of the material presented on this disc is full frame 1.33:1, the live concert section is matted into what looks to be 1.85:1, however there is no 16x9 enhancement.
The level of sharpness of the image is quite ordinary during the live concert section (as stated before). This is due to some fairly ordinary source material. As is the case with the first part of this DVD, shadow detail is dependant on the origin of the footage. Sometimes it's good, sometimes it's bad and with such a large range of source footage, in the end what we do get is okay considering the circumstances. Low level noise (despite all the other problems with the video on this DVD) is not a real problem here.
Colour use and portrayal is okay during this section of the programming with the main issue being some fairly poor quality images seen during the live concert section where the colour seems to be exaggerated at times and false colours come through.
There are some MPEG artefacts to be seen at times during the program including some pixelization at 6:04. The ever-present edge enhancement is visible many times during the program and can be seen at 5:59 and 58:30 amongst other places. The main issues with the video quality of this disc is viable during the live concert portions of the material. This looks to be the result of a reasonably poor transfer to this DVD from a VHS master tape. Not all the material available on this disc looks to be affected by the myriad of artefacts seen during the concert section, but the concert portion is a real problem as is the acoustic set. The main issue affecting these sections is overabundant aliasing (7:53). Huge amounts of cross coloration (5:43, 79:47 as examples) are also present which, when combined with the aliasing present offers a image that shimmers, is lacking in sharpness, features non-accurate colouring (rainbow colouration everywhere) and, to be blunt, looks terrible. Thankfully, the rest of the disc is not affected by these problems and despite these problems, the subject matter to my mind overrides the transfer flaws. Also, bear in mind that the transfer problems affecting the live concert portion of the programme are also visible in the Visualize section where the same footage is used in the video section. As is seen at other times during the program, analogue tape tracking errors are visible and can be seen at 79:50, 81:19 and 99:00 as well as during the interviews in the Special Features portion of this title.
The four subtitle options (French, German, Spanish and Italian) are the same for the whole disc and are not visible during the songs.
This disc has one of the worst layer changes seen by this reviewer...ever. Want to put your player through its paces and see how good it is? Try this disc on for size and see if your player can render this horrendous layer change (seen at 21:32) invisible. It takes place mid song during the live concert section and stands out like the proverbial. If your can miss this change, then you're either blind or have the best DVD player known to man. Of all the places to put a layer change, this is most assuredly not it.
There is only one audio track available, that being an English Dolby Digital 2.0 surround-encoded track. Considering the bit rate used on this title (192 kb/s), what we have in the end is adequate for the programming on this disc. While bands lip synching their own songs can sometimes be fairly obvious and at times flawed, the footage seen here seems to be quite good.
The music is, of course, by Def Leppard who this time around set out to do things just a bit differently to what we've seen them do before. Perhaps one thing that hinders some of that experimentation by the band is the fact that for so long their music has been extremely consistent, both in terms of style and of production quality. With the boys thinking somewhat outside their usual square of style, the results may take a bit of getting used to. What isn't any different is their trademark impossible harmonies (which they make possible) and the unmistakable guitar style of Phil Collen. With this disc, we see the band starting on a re-evaluation of their style while still just a few steps away from the Pyromania / Hysteria sound.
The audio for this disc is in Dolby Digital 2.0 surround-encoded, therefore any rear action that you'll get will have to be derived from your receiver's matrix processing. This being the case, what we do end up getting is a fairly weak atmospheric surround signal that is not overly audible. Perhaps Pro Logic II or NEO 6 or Logic7 or whatever you may have can do something with this 2 channel track, but in the end I listened to the disc in straight 2 channel mode with no surround effect.
The level of low frequency sound in the material presented is well integrated and natural and complements the music well without being overly bass heavy.
|Surround Channel Use|
Visualize (video collection)
The menu for this section offers the viewer a list of available songs and interviews which can be selected individually via the menu for instant viewing or you can select the Def Leppard - Visualize logo at the top of the screen to play the entire programme from beginning to end. This menu is animated and features audio in Dolby Digital 2.0 surround-encoded that loops endlessly every 1:09.
Video Archive (live concert, promotional videos, acoustic set)
The menu for this section is the same as above with either individual tracks or the entire program selectable. The menu divides the three sections (live, videos, acoustic) so it's easy to pick the track you want as there are some multiple song versions available. This menu is animated with audio in Dolby Digital 2.0 surround-encoded and it loops endlessly every 60 seconds.
The Special Features menu offers the following options:
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
The video is okay with some material suffering from some fairly glaring transfer problems, especially the live concert and acoustic sections, while other material fares better.
The audio is reasonable and is easily listenable whilst not being anywhere near reference standard.
The extras...well, really this whole title is one big extra with a wealth of material about the band on offer including videos (some with multiple versions) as well as a stack of live performances, interviews and archival footage. It is all a fan could want, and you will want it.
|DVD||Panasonic A300-MU, using S-Video output|
|Display||Hitachi CP-L750W LCD Projector. Calibrated with Video Essentials.|
|Audio Decoder||Built in to DVD player. Calibrated with Video Essentials.|
|Speakers||VAF DC-X fronts; VAF DC-6 center; VAF DC-2 rears; LFE-07subwoofer (80W X 2)|