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Proposal: The James Cameron Project
#1
So in lieu of a bunch of projects that I have lost on a dead HDD, I've been considering trying a big project that I have been planning and researching for a while.

Like a lot of people here I'm a big fan of James Cameron's films. I grew up loving them and even as an adult they are some of my favorite films to revisit. But of course like a lot movies transferred to home video, Cameron's films have never been totally accurate to the 35mm prints seen in theaters. Originally a lot of those transfers were too warm, graded to be played on a CRT TV or white balance to remove any extreme color timing. Lately, Cameron himself has ruined his own films by giving them a heavy green/yellow tone which you can see in Aliens, T2 and the HDTV of The Abyss. Now a fair amount of green should be there but these remasters seem to have gone too far and have destroyed the blues of the films. The 35mm examples I have seen are full of "Cameron blues" ranging from powder blue to a deep purplish blues. That look has been striped from the home video releases of his films.

So the goal of this project is to regrade each of Cameron's films to the 35mm examples I have and then add every bit of audio I possibly can fit. No small feat and one I'm not sure I can complete but I want to try and see how far I can get. The starting focus is on T2, TL and Abyss with Aliens and T1 coming later. If anyone has an ideas or audio they would like to share please let me know.

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Terminator 2: Judgment Day (Theatrical Cut)

T2 TC is first out of the gate. As of right now I think the base of this project will be an "enhanced" version of the Lionsgate 2015 BD opposed to the 4K remaster. While the 4K is overall sharper, the near constant DNR removes a lot of details. If I process and upscale (to 4K) the 2015 BD I can tease out a lot more detail then the base transfer. Maybe not as much as the 4K but hopefully within spitting distance. Here are some test pics:

Lionsgate 2015 BD/Processed and regraded
[Image: 8ywJDfm.jpg]

As little closer look at the first pics:

Lionsgate 2015 BD/Processed and regraded x200
[Image: a894iPu.jpg]

More pics from a rough first pass color test:
[Image: 4kFcFdj.png]
(still need to work on the skin tones)

For audio I have a pretty good selection which includes off the top of my head:

PCM 2.0 Dolby Surround (from the US widescreen LD 68952-2WS)
PCM 2.0 Dolby Surround (from the US widescreen LD 68952-2DD)
PCM 2.0 Dolby Surround (from the Japanese widescreen LD PILF-0001)
PCM 2.0 Dolby Surround (from the Japanese SQZ widescreen LD PILF-2187)
PCM 2.0 Mono (from the Japanese SQZ widescreen LD PILF-2187)
Dolby Digital 5.1 (from the US widescreen LD 68952-2DD) - thanks B&D
Dolby Digital 5.1 (from the US Live DVD)
DTS 5.1 (from the JPN DVD)
DTS-HD MA 5.1 (Chew's remix of the JPN DVD)
Dolby Digital 2.0 (from the US UE DVD)
Dolby Digital 5.1 EX (from the US UE DVD)
DTS-ES 5.1 (from the US UE DVD)
Dolby Digital 5.1 EX (from the US EE DVD)
DTS 5.1 (from the LG 2015 BD)
DTS-HD MA 5.1(from the LG 2015 BD)

Also have the US and JPN SE LD's PCM 2.0 which I might cut down to fit the TC since they should be a different mix from the original TC LDs. Don't know yet. There might be more added audio from the 4k release.

I'm hoping to use some of my stand alone Dolby and non-Dolby Surround matrix decoders (Shure, Involve, Fosgate, Lexicon) to decode the original LD's PCM into a discrete PCM/DTS-HD MA 5.1/4.1 and include it here. We shall see if the comes true.
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True Lies

I started working regrading True Lies to 35mm examples using the DVHS transfer but I need to start over. Thanks to maksnew, I now have access to a few Web-DLs of TL with better PQ then what I had. I still will go through  processing and upscaling the transfer to 4K similar to what I am doing to T2. Here is one pic from the previous work:

Original DVHS/Regrade
[Image: Mcwuw1E.png]

And the audio so far:

DTS-HD MA 5.1 (from the Cinema DTS discs)
PCM 2.0 Dolby Surround (from the US WS LD)
DTS 5.1 (from the DVHS tape)
Dolby Digital 5.1 (from the US DVD)
DTS 5.1 (from the Japanese DVD)
Dolby Digital+ 5.1 (from the Web-DL/HDTV)

I'm hoping at some point to acquire the 5.1 (AC-3 or DTS) from one or both of the LDs but that seems unlikely.
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The Abyss: Special Edition

For the Abyss I think I'm going with the SE  opposed to the TC. The goal for this is to take Random.next's OM project and re-framed every shot back to 2.39 to roughly match the old SE DVD. I'm about 2/3 of the way done on that. I was originally going to color graded it back to the old European HDTV OM broadcast but with a CRT LUT applied but might have access to more 35mm examples to work off of. The SE parts need a lot of work both in upscaling and some dirt removal.

Here are some pics from the previous work:

Reframed 2.39/Reframed 2.39 Regraded (European HDTV OM w/ CRT LUT)
[Image: 2UnduWw.jpg]

PCM 2.0 Dolby Surround (from the OAR SE LD)
PCM 2.0 Dolby Surround (from the OM SE LD)
Dolby Digital 2.0 (from the OM DVD)
Dolby Digital 5.1 (from the OM DVD)
Dolby Digital 2.0 (from the OAR DVD) - Thanks NeonBible
Dolby Digital 5.1 (from the OAR DVD) - Thanks NeonBible
Dolby Digital 5.1 (from the Chinese DVD)
DTS-ES 5.1 (from the Chinese DVD)
Dolby Digital 5.1 (from the EU OM HDTV)

Also have the US TC LD PCM 2.0 which might splice with the SE LD and add to the project. Not sure.

Much like T2 I'm hoping to use some of my stand alone Dolby and non-Dolby Surround matrix decoders (Shure, Involve, Fosgate, Lexicon) to decode the original LD's PCM into a discrete PCM/DTS-HD MA 5.1/4.1 and include it here.
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Aliens (Theatrical Cut) and The Terminator

Both of these will be in the second batch of work after the initial 3 films. At that time I should have a fair amount of 35mm examples for Aliens and hopefully more for T1.  Here is the current audio selections I have:

Aliens
PCM 2.0 Dolby Surround (from the P&S LD)
PCM 2.0 Dolby Surround (from the THX LD)
Dolby Digital 5.1 (from the THX LD)
Dolby Digital 5.1 (from the Quad DVD)
Dolby Digital 4.1 (from the BD)
DTS-HD MA 5.1 (from the BD)

The Terminator
PCM 2.0 Mono (from the Image LD)
PCM 2.0 Mono (from the JPN LD)
DTS-HD MA 2.1 Mono Remix (from the Image DVD's DD 2.1)
DTS-HD MA 2.0 Mono (from the MGM SE DVD's DD 2.0)
DTS-HD MA 5.1 Remix (from the US BD)

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Titanic and Avatar

Not sure about working on Titanic. There are 35mm examples out there and even though I like the film, I have to see how I feel after finishing everything else. If I do work on it, I'm likely to use the HDTV broadcast over the BD but that is just me thinking out loud.

I don't think there is anything to do with Avatar. I don't know if the color varies greatly from theatrical presentation. Also I hate that film so there is no incentive for me.
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Thanks

A lot of people have given me bits and pieces of these projects over the years, so thank you to all them in no particular order.

MrBrown
Chewtobacco
Jonno
Tservo
Bigrob
Zoidberg
Williarob
Stamper
Maksnew
Random.next
X5gb
BusterD
Doombot
NeonBible
borisanddoris
Kreeep
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#2
Reserved
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Thanks given by: SHM
#3
Are you using AI upscale? the screenshots looks really good.
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#4
The examples are looking great. I had heard about the Cameron Blues many times but the 35mm T2 scan really 'blue' my mind at how blue it was! I wish I had something to provide in this case, but you seem to have all the sound sources covered - at least compared to what I have
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#5
Looks fantastic! Looks like you have all the audio tracks covered but I'll double check what I have.

Out of curiosity why go with the SE of The Abyss of the TC?
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#6
(2022-07-20, 04:39 PM)SHM Wrote: Are you using AI upscale? the screenshots looks really good.

Topaz AI? Although I have used it a lot in the past, I'm using an AI SuperRes filter in AVIsynth here. Topaz is super great but does like to dump grain out which I'm trying to avoid here.

(2022-07-20, 04:44 PM)SpookyLemon13 Wrote: The examples are looking great. I had heard about the Cameron Blues many times but the 35mm T2 scan really 'blue' my mind at how blue it was! I wish I had something to provide in this case, but you seem to have all the sound sources covered - at least compared to what I have

Thanks anyway!

(2022-07-20, 05:02 PM)stwd4nder2 Wrote: Looks fantastic! Looks like you have all the audio tracks covered but I'll double check what I have.

Appreciate you checking

(2022-07-20, 05:02 PM)stwd4nder2 Wrote: Out of curiosity why go with the SE of The Abyss of the TC?

I'm doing the SE over the TC for a few reasons. Here are the cliffnote responses.

1. I think the TC cuts of T2 and Aliens (sans dead daughter scene) are the better cuts of both movies. The added parts do give both films more info and time to breathe but I think they lose out to the quicker pacing of the TCs. Its a big factor considering both are action films. I think they both just work better cut down and paced faster. Abyss on the other hand has a lot of action but relies more heavily on the sense of being trapped and the discovery of the "aliens". The added parts add not only to those two factors but the sense of impending doom. I just think its the better cut of the film.

2. I have more audio selections for the SE then the TC. Two LDs, one HDTV and several more DVDs of audio provide a better diversity of listening. Not that more always equals better but in this case there was a discussion at some point the TC LD's soundtrack is not as good as the SE LD's soundtrack. Not sure if true but I will try to find out. Also if I went with the TC, I'd lose the pretty cool Chinese DTS track.

3. At some point I plan to upscale the 4:3 transfer of the Abyss like I'm doing with the 4:3 transfer of T2. I really want to preserve the movie in this format since the transfer was personally supervised by Cameron He even wrote a letter included in the LD box as to why he preferred that formatting of the film on home video. Understand this was in the time of 4:3 TVs and doesn't apply to today's TVs or technology but it still note-worthy and worth preserving. Add to that the fact that he 4:3 transfer is only the SE cut. So in the end its just easier to format it to this work on the HD OAR and swap the audio over.

4. I can always cut it down later to the TC if needed. I know I could make the same argument for T2 and Aliens but for those I refer back to point #1. Aliens might see the light of day in the TV cut but T2 is only going to be TC for now.
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Thanks given by: BDgeek
#7
Very excited to check out the results of this project! I've been experimenting with AI upscaling myself on ONCE UPON A TIME IN AMERICA and INFERNO. Definitely a really cool tool for rescuing older HD masters with less detail.

EDIT: Just saw your post above, I use Topaz mainly. Interested to see what this other upscaler does.
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#8
very interesting work, I will say more about the Abyss, an old Korean HDTV with a hardsub, has better quality in extended scenes, unlike the German source that used random in its hybrid, I compared it after the creation of the hybrid.
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#9
(2022-07-20, 05:47 PM)The Aluminum Falcon Wrote: Very excited to check out the results of this project! I've been experimenting with AI upscaling myself on ONCE UPON A TIME IN AMERICA and INFERNO. Definitely a really cool tool for rescuing older HD masters with less detail.

EDIT: Just saw your post above, I use Topaz mainly. Interested to see what this other upscaler does.

Thanks TAF. I'd love to see those upscales at some point. Need to finish my Once Upon a time in the West upscale to go with your America upscale Smile

(2022-07-20, 05:53 PM)maksnew Wrote: very interesting work, I will say more about the Abyss, an old Korean HDTV with a hardsub, has better quality in extended scenes, unlike the German source that used random in its hybrid, I compared it after the creation of the hybrid.

Is that the same HDTV as the Japanese one? Or has that just been Korean all along?
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#10
(2022-07-20, 05:58 PM)PDB Wrote:
(2022-07-20, 05:53 PM)maksnew Wrote: very interesting work, I will say more about the Abyss, an old Korean HDTV with a hardsub, has better quality in extended scenes, unlike the German source that used random in its hybrid, I compared it after the creation of the hybrid.

Is that the same HDTV as the Japanese one? Or has that just been Korean all along?
There was always Korean, I have it 1080p in the cloud storage, if it is useful I can send a link to it.
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