LD higher quality than DVD ?

Discussion in 'DVD Video' started by ZoulonFire, Sep 1, 2004.

  1. ZoulonFire

    ZoulonFire Guest

    A friend of mine was argueing that LD is actually higher quality picture and
    sound, but ended up being too expensive to produce (as LD's need a "clean room"
    to be made) and thus DVD was invented... any thoughts ?

    ZoulonFire, Sep 1, 2004
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  2. ZoulonFire

    DVDfanatico Guest

    LD's do seem better to me in some respects. The spirit of LD lives on. They
    would have big jackets and all sorts of literature on the back. Some DVD's
    don't even have inserts. It is quite a movie experience watching LD's. I wish
    Norm Wilner were here to offer his critique.

    DVDfanatico, Sep 1, 2004
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  3. ZoulonFire

    Joshua Zyber Guest

    LD often has better sound, but DVD usually has better picture. See link

    Joshua Zyber, Sep 1, 2004
  4. ZoulonFire

    Brian Guest

    From memory Laser Disk was too expensive to buy and DVD offered a
    cheaper media for the public. Also LD's were large in size compared to
    Megabit DVD's have a very high quality picture.
    DTS on DVD's offers a very high quality sound.
    Both of these would exceed what was offered by LD.

    Regards Brian
    Brian, Sep 1, 2004
  5. ZoulonFire

    Biz Guest

    LD was analog video, and its at a lower resolution than DVD. Many LD titles
    had DD, which would sound pretty much identical to the DD on DVDs. A few
    LDs had DTS sound that was typically at a higher bitrate than what tehy use
    on DTS DVDs today, so it could potentially sound better, but the equipment
    needed to playback LDs was prohibitively expensive for many.

    You can draw your own conclusions from here
    Biz, Sep 1, 2004
  6. ZoulonFire

    Allan Guest


    [2.7] How does DVD compare to laserdisc?

    Features: DVD has the same basic features as CLV LD (scan, pause,
    search) and CAV LD (freeze, slow) and adds branching, multiple camera
    angles, parental control, video menus, interactivity, etc., although
    some of these features are not available on all discs.
    Capacity: Single-layer DVD holds over 2 hours, dual-layer holds over 4
    hours. CLV LD holds one hour per side, CAV holds half an hour. A CAV
    laserdisc can hold 104,000 still images. DVD can hold thousands of
    still pictures accompanied by hundreds of hours of audio and text.
    Convenience: An entire movie fits on one side of a DVD, so there's no
    need to flip the disc or wait for the player to do it. DVDs are
    smaller and easier to handle. DVD players can be portable, similar to
    CD players. Discs can be easily and cheaply sent through the mail. On
    the other hand, laserdiscs have larger covers for better art and text.
    Noise: Most LD players make a whirring noise that can be heard during
    quiet segments of a movie. Most DVD players are as quiet as CD
    Audio: LD can have better quality on Dolby Surround soundtracks stored
    in uncompressed PCM format. DVD has better quality on Dolby Digital or
    music only (PCM). LD has 2 audio tracks: analog and digital, whereas
    DVD has up to 8 audio tracks. LD uses PCM audio sampled with 16 bits
    at 44.1 kHz. DVD LPCM audio can use 16, 20, or 24 bit samples at 48 or
    96 kHz (although PCM is not used with most movies). LD has surround
    audio in Dolby Surround, Dolby Digital (AC-3), and DTS formats.
    5.1-channel surround sound is available by using one channel of the
    analog track for AC-3 or both channels of the digital track for DTS.
    DVD uses the same Dolby Digital surround sound, usually at a higher
    data rate of 448 kbps, and can optionally include DTS (at data rates
    up to 1536 kbps compared to LD's 1411 kbps, but in practice DTS data
    rates are often 768 kbps). DVD players convert Dolby Digital to Dolby
    Surround. The downmixing, combined with the effects of compression,
    often results in lower-quality sound than from LD Dolby Surround
    Video: DVD usually has better video. LD suffers from degradation
    inherent in analog storage and in the composite NTSC or PAL video
    signal. DVD uses digital video, and even though it's heavily
    compressed, most professionals agree that when properly and carefully
    encoded it's virtually indistinguishable from studio masters. This
    doesn't mean that the video quality of DVD is always better than LD.
    Only that it can be better. Also keep in mind that the average
    television is of insufficient quality to show much difference between
    LD and DVD. Home theater systems or HDTVs are needed to take full
    advantage of the improved quality.
    Resolution: In numerical terms DVD has 345,600 pixels (720x480), which
    is 1.3 times LD's approximately 272,160 pixels (567x480). Widescreen
    DVD has 1.7 times the pixels of letterboxed LD (or 1.3 times
    anamorphic LD). As for lines of horizontal resolution, DVD has about
    500 whereas LD has about 425 (more info in 3.4.1). In analog output
    signal terms, typical luma frequency response maintains full amplitude
    to between 5.0 and 5.5 MHz. This is below the 6.75 MHz native
    frequency of the MPEG-2 digital signal. Chroma frequency response is
    one-half that of luma. Laserdisc frequency response usually begins to
    fall off at 3 MHz. (All figures are for NTSC, not PAL.)
    Legacy titles: Some movies on laserdisc will probably never appear on
    DVD (see Julien Wilk's Laserdisc Database).
    Availability: DVD players and discs are available for purchase and
    rental in thousands of outlets and on the Internet. LD players and
    discs are becoming hard to find.
    Price: Low-cost DVD players are cheaper than the cheapest LD player.
    Most movies on DVD cost less than on LD.
    Restrictions: For those outside the US, regional coding (see 1.10) is
    a definite drawback of DVD. For some people Macrovision copy
    protection (see 1.11) is an annoyance. Laserdisc has no copy
    protection and does not have regional differences other than PAL vs.
    Recordable: DVD recorders are increasingly affordable. Laserdisc
    recording, at a low of $250 per disc, was never available to general
    For more laserdisc info, see Leopold's FAQ at
    <www.cs.tut.fi/~leopold/Ld/FAQ/index.html>, and Bob Niland's FAQs and
    overview at <www.access-one.com/rjn/laser/laserdisc.html> (overview
    reprinted from Widescreen Review magazine).

    "Arguing with anonymous strangers on the Internet is a sucker's game
    because they almost always turn out to be -- or to be indistinguishable from
    -- self-righteous sixteen-year-olds possessing infinite amounts of free time."
    - Neil Stephenson, _Cryptonomicon_
    Allan, Sep 1, 2004
  7. ZoulonFire

    Richard Guest

    BEAT that dead horse...

    Richard, Sep 2, 2004
  8. ZoulonFire

    Joshua Zyber Guest

    Laserdisc also offered Dolby Digital and DTS. The DTS was encoded at a
    higher bit-rate than most DVDs.
    Joshua Zyber, Sep 2, 2004
  9. ZoulonFire

    John C. Guest

    DTS on LD, where available is generally higher quality than DVD, due
    to higher bandwidth used.
    John C., Sep 2, 2004
  10. ZoulonFire

    Allan Guest


    "Arguing with anonymous strangers on the Internet is a sucker's game
    because they almost always turn out to be -- or to be indistinguishable from
    -- self-righteous sixteen-year-olds possessing infinite amounts of free time."
    - Neil Stephenson, _Cryptonomicon_
    Allan, Sep 2, 2004
  11. ZoulonFire

    RichC Guest

    Laserdisc and DVD are both NTSC/PAL video, and with a 4:3 image the
    resolution is the same. An anamorphic DVD will of course have more
    picture information than a non-anamorphic LD, but not everyone has a
    TV that can take advantage of this.

    The real differences have to do with the Laserdisc video being
    composite while the DVDs are encoded as component video. This results
    in better contrast and color rendition, and blacker blacks.

    And it should be noted that the art of digital mastering has advanced
    quite a bit in recent years. It's unfair to compare today's DVDs to
    yesterday's Laserdiscs. Take a DVD and a Laserdisc created from the
    same master, and they won't look much different. The Laserdisc might
    well look better, because there won't be any compression artifacts.
    There are numerous examples of this from the early days of DVD.

    RichC, Sep 2, 2004
  12. Nope: DVD and laserdisc certainly have the same *vertical* resolution (525
    lines for NTSC), but DVD is capable of higher *horizontal* resolution (540
    lines vs. laserdisc's 400-425 lines).

    See <http://hometheater.about.com/cs/television/a/aavideoresa_2.htm> for a
    more thorough discussion of vertical vs. horizontal resolution.

    Douglas Bailey, Sep 2, 2004
  13. ZoulonFire

    ThePunisher Guest

    ??? Quote,

    250 - 400+ lines (Depends on recording speed and compression used)"

    Recording speed???
    ThePunisher, Sep 3, 2004
  14. ZoulonFire

    Biz Guest

    That quote probably refers to standalone recorder models....
    Biz, Sep 3, 2004
  15. A friend of mine was argueing that LD is actually higher quality picture and
    DVD outperforms LD in video. DVDs are a pure digital medium with component
    video while LaserVision is FM analogue composite video. This means that the
    color and B&W information on a DVD are kept seperate while the same video info
    on LaserDisc is all in one signal. This means less processing is needed with a
    DVD video feed when using an s-video or component connection. LaserVision
    video must go through a comb filter, either through the TV or through the
    player depending on the video connection, to actually seperate the B&W (luma)
    and color (chroma) signals before they can be used to drive the display.

    Having the video seperate to begin with helps to eliminate various artifacts
    inherent with comb filtering, like dot crawl.
    Also, since the video from a DVD is digital, you don't have problems with
    chroma noise like you would with LD. Now, this doesn't mean that digital is
    always better, but in the case of DVD, it's an advantage over LaserDisc.

    For an example of chroma noise, simply look for a bright red object on a video
    from DVD and look for the same thing from a LaserDisc. The DVD will show a
    cleaner and more stable red color than the LD.

    As for clean room conditions, ALL optical disc media requires clean room
    conditions to assure a reliable product. This particular requirement was never
    seriously acknowledged by MCA when they first introduced LaserDisc in 1978, and
    their DiscoVision titles ended up being defective right out of the factory.
    When Pioneer took the reigns in 1981, things improved considerably with the
    original DiscoVision plant in Carson, California being retooled and cleaned up.
    Although Pioneer and other LD makers would hit some bumps along the way with
    the occurance of laser rot in 1984 (which is actually a fairly rare occurance
    with discs produced during the late 1980s and up with exception of discs made
    by Sony DADC USA during the 1990s).

    Anyways, any optical media, be it a CD, DVD, LaserDisc, MiniDisc, etc. require
    clean room conditions exceeding those required by the pharmaceutical industry.
    To give you an idea about why clean room conditions are vital for any kind of
    optical disc manufacturing, imagine a CD the size of a regular stadium; the
    pits would be the size of sand grains. It should be easy to imagine how specs
    of dust can ruin mere CDs during manufacture, much less LaserDiscs and DVDs.

    LaserDisc did initially sell like hotcakes, but because of MCA's inability to
    make good discs and Philips' inability to make players that worked right, LDs
    were crashing down right after they came out. If it weren't for Pioneer, LD
    would have remained an obscure format of the 70s.

    Pioneer became involved because MCA wanted to market LD in Japan and Pioneer
    was the company to help MCA with this. This would eventually lead to Pioneer
    assuming control of the format when DiscoVision Associates went out of business
    (which was a partnership formed between MCA and IBM around 1979-1980 in a vain
    effort to improve LD quality, mainly because IBM didn't really do anything to

    Anyways, LDs failed to grow out of a niche not because it was too expensive to
    make but because:

    1. Pioneer failed to market the format sufficiently.

    2. Video cassettes were already well-established with people preferring to
    record shows and rent movies rather than buy discs.

    3. RCA releasing their needle-based CED videodisc format in 1981, which would
    cause confusion in the marketplace.

    And since the format would remain a niche with low manufacturing volume, a
    higher price for software and hardware would be necessary in order to secure
    any kind of a profit.

    Remember, in mass manufacture: the more you make, the less it may cost you to
    make per finished piece. The less you make, the more it will cost you to make
    per finished piece.

    DVDs would come out about 19 years after the introduction of LDs and is managed
    under a consortium. Originally, DVD was two different formats: SD "SuperDisc"
    (Toshiba, Time Warner) and MMCD "Multimedia CD" (Sony, Philips). These four
    companies would agree to merge both their formats to create the Digital
    Versatile Disc. V is for versatile because DVD is capable of being much more
    than a mere video delivery platform, hence the word although the consortium
    doesn't have an official designation according to DVDFAQ. DVD would be
    controlled by a multi-company consortium composed of several companies.

    The DVD seemed more a replacement for VHS with quality exceeding that of
    LaserDisc, and all with a CD-sized disc. DVD was intended for mass-market
    release right from the get-go and had substantial support from both the
    electronics and entertainment industries, and experience from CD and LD
    businesses would help DVD. The home video market already existed for DVD to
    become a success.

    LaserDisc was originally designed for the same purpose, but its developments
    were pretty much experimental at the time and it wasn't backed by a
    multi-company consortium to the kind of scale with as good of cooperation
    between members that DVD has. MCA, Philips, and Pioneer had to try and create
    a market for LaserDisc as home video was still in its infancy at the time.

    Lengthy post. (^_^;) Hope this answers questions, though. - Reinhart
    LASERandDVDfan, Sep 4, 2004
  16. The Laserdisc might
    Compression artifacts are virtually a non-issue with almost any contemporary
    DVD produced today.

    If you were to compare a letterboxed LD of one title to an anamorphically
    enhanced DVD of the same (taking advantage of anamorphic enhancement), then the
    DVD will look much better.

    Although, this advantage goes out the window if you compare an anamorphic DVD
    with an anamorphic LD. But, anamorphic LDs are extremely rare.

    But, this doesn't negate the fact that there are still numerous titles on LD
    which are still not yet available on DVD. And watching a flick on LD is still
    infinitely better than VHS. - Reinhart
    LASERandDVDfan, Sep 4, 2004
  17. "DVD-R/-RW/+R/+RW
    Recording speed is a misnomer that's used for the limited understanding of the
    average consumer.

    If you were to tell the average Joe that recording speed on DVD really means
    the level of bitrate reduction used on the recording to save on disc space,
    they will likely not know what the heck you're talking about.

    As for the DVD's 540 horizontal resolution claim, that comes from a
    press-replicated DVD made from the best possible mastering using the best
    possible quality telecine transfer. Something that was made to push the limits
    of DVD and NTSC.

    The 250-400+ claim assumes a recording made from a videotape source (240-250)
    to an over-the-air NTSC broadcast (approx. 330) all the way up to a DirecTV
    broadcast or an S-VHS source (400+). These kinds of sources usually don't even
    come close to pushing the limits due to practical limitations. - Reinhart
    LASERandDVDfan, Sep 4, 2004
  18. ZoulonFire

    Black Locust Guest

    <snip remainder of lengthy post>

    *claps* I love reading these rich history lessons you so frequently dish
    out Reinhart. You should post a detailed chronicle of the Betamax vs.
    VHSuck war just for the heck of it. :)
    "Our enemies are innovative and resourceful, and so are we.
    They never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people,
    and neither do we." - George Dubya Bush

    Vote Kerry 2004
    Black Locust, Sep 7, 2004
  19. ZoulonFire

    Eric R. Guest

    Your friend is full of shit. The only LD's ever made that compared
    with modern anamorphic DVD's were the Hi-Vision Muse analog HD discs.
    And they were only made in Japan and less than 200 titles were ever
    produced (and you could only watch them if you had a several thousand
    $$ to invest in a system).

    Eric R., Sep 7, 2004
  20. ZoulonFire

    Richard Guest

    It's always the same; Something goes out of production (for the most
    part) and the myths start being made, principally by people who never
    did get into the LD market.
    Richard, Sep 7, 2004
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