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Mars in 3D: Images from The Viking Mission Blu-ray

United States
Blu-ray 3D AIX Records | 1979 | 33 min | Not rated | Jun 26, 2012

Mars in 3D: Images from The Viking Mission (Blu-ray)
Large:


Video
Codec: MPEG-4 AVC
Resolution: 1080p
Aspect ratio: 1.33:1
Original aspect ratio: 1.33:1

Audio
English: Dolby TrueHD 5.1
English: LPCM 2.0

Subtitles
None

Discs
25GB Blu-ray Disc
Single disc (1 BD)
Blu-ray 3D

Playback
Region free

Price
List price: $19.99, Price history
Amazon: $17.99 (Save 10%)
New from: $14.00 (Save 30%)
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Buy Mars in 3D: Images from The Viking Mission on Blu-ray

Movie rating
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
7.1
/10
1
ratings.


Blu-ray rating
3D 1.5 of 51.5
Video 3.0 of 53.0
Audio 3.5 of 53.5
Extras 2.0 of 52.0
Be the first to review it!

Movie appeal

 
Documentary100%
Music74%

6%
popularity
26
collections
3
fans




Mars in 3D: Images from The Viking Mission

 (1979)

Mars in 3D: Images from The Viking Mission Blu-ray offers decent video and solid audio, but overall it's a mediocre Blu-ray release

A historical production by Stanford University and the History Office of the NASA Ames Research Center presented in Blu-ray 3D Video and features footage from the 1980's NASA Viking 1 & 2 Missions to Mars. The soundtrack was created at the Center for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics (CCRMA) at Stanford under the direction of John Chowning. This disc contains bonus features including a 15 minute interview with John Chowning, William Schottstaedt and Michael McNabb.

For more about Mars in 3D: Images from The Viking Mission and the Mars in 3D: Images from The Viking Mission Blu-ray release, see Mars in 3D: Images from The Viking Mission Blu-ray Review published by on where this Blu-ray release scored 2.5 out of 5.

Starring: Elliott C. Levinthal
Narrator: Elliott C. Levinthal

» See full cast & crew


Mars in 3D: Images from The Viking Mission Blu-ray, Video Quality

  3.0 of 5

To gain a perception of depth in the stereo movie you are about to see, you need to wear the stereo glasses. They can be worn over the glasses you normally wear. Sit back and relax your eyes. If you are fusing the two images into a single image, this text should look like a staircase with steps descending towards you.

First things first. The quality of AIX's 1080p/MVC-encoded video transfer is sound. Artifacting, banding and other compression anomalies are in short supply in both the 2D and 3D presentation of the film (aliasing being the only distracting issue of note), and most every other blip and blemish is rooted in the original photography and stereoscopic source. Very few resources have been invested into remastering or restoring footage of host and producer Elliott C. Levinthal, and it doesn't appear as if the remaining film has undergone any major color, contrast or clarity enhancements. That isn't necessarily a bad thing; the film looks like a scientific documentary issued in 1979 (as it should), so the end result only contributes to whatever aesthetic charm the release has going for it. Just adjust your expectations. Detail is decent at best, definition is merely adequate, black levels are muddy, colors are weak and virtually nothing about the 2D presentation is anything other than passable. Grain removal has occurred (as outlined in the special features) but it's unclear how much, if any, texture was removed with it.

The 3D experience, on the other hand, is nauseating. To be clear: the MVC-encoded transfer is not to blame. The brutal crosstalk and convergence point irregularities that render much of the 3D imagery poorly resolved at best -- and unwatchable at its worst -- is a product of the source. (God help you if your 3D display is prone to ghosting. I can't imagine how my head would have felt had the problem been exacerbated any further.) The long explanation as to why crosstalk plagues the presentation is... a very long explanation. The short explanation is that each chunk of orbital 3D imagery was created using two separate passes over the planet; one dedicated to each "half" of the 3D image. In the hours between those two passes, the shadows shifted, which in turn produced two substantially different images; images that, even when aligned, produce a near-disastrous effect, no matter how proficient the subsequent 3D encode might be. Ground-level images have their own issues to contend with. Because of the large .8 meter separation between the lander cameras, the images have an emphasized stereoscopic effect that make the horizon easier to view than the foreground. With some practice, moving your eyes slowly down the screen allows your brain to better merge the 3D image. But if you already have a headache from viewing the orbital shots, beware. It isn't a pleasant exercise.

Ultimately, I had such difficulty with the crosstalk and convergence difficulties that, try as I did, I just couldn't stomach watching the full 32-minute film in 3D in one stretch. As a result, my 3D score is based on my subjective experience alone. My base video quality score is based on the technical merits of the encode and the fact that, even if given a more thorough overhaul, the 3D presentation couldn't really be improved.


Mars in 3D: Images from The Viking Mission Blu-ray, Audio Quality

  3.5 of 5

Two 48KHz/16-bit audio mixes are included: a lossless Dolby TrueHD 5.1 surround track and an uncompressed LPCM 2.0 stereo track. But it's the Dolby TrueHD mix that reigns supreme here, allowing William Schottstaedt and Michael McNabb's score to boldly go where it's never gone before. Full, robust and more alien than ever, the tone and timbre of the synth pieces fill the soundfield and create an eerie, otherworldly experience (one almost at odds with the otherwise dry, matter-of-fact documentary). LFE output and rear speaker activity is still on the light side, but I can't imagine the music sounding any better than it does here. Levinthal's narration is clean and clear, even though a slight, almost negligible buzz seems to haunt his voice when the score surges. Nothing beyond the extraterrestrial synth hymns, though, screams lossless audio. Orient your expectations accordingly.


Mars in 3D: Images from The Viking Mission Blu-ray, News and Updates



No related news posts for Mars in 3D: Images from The Viking Mission Blu-ray yet.


Mars in 3D: Images from The Viking Mission Blu-ray, Forum Discussions



Topic Replies Last post
Mars Attacks! September 7, 2010 108 Mar 18, 2012
Mars Needs Moms -- August 9, 2011 63 Nov 20, 2012



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