Why 720p for Revisited is Enough

People have been asking why i am not doing the HD versions of the edits in 1080p, but instead opting for 720p. Well it’s down to a few factors; One being that I am having to use the 2006 bonus DVD’s to return some Special Edition shots back to their original state and , as we know, the quality of the Bonus discs is pretty low. Upscaling them and cleaning them up can give some pretty useable results when going to 720p but not so good when going up to 1080p. Another reason is rendering times. The layers of FX / Video i am having to use on many shots slowed my old PC to a crawl when rendering at 720p and just wouldn’t have coped at 1080p. My new PC can handle things a lot better now, but that would mean starting from scratch, which i am not prepared to do.

Another reason is that, when i get around to the prequels, i want to be able to play about with the framing of a lot of the shots. So, for example, i can frame a shot tighter into one of the actors, but keep the quality of the image. Very handy if i want to replace a line of dialogue from one of the actors.

The final reason is the actual quality of the Blu-Rays. Many people don’t realise that these are old transfer scans done in 2003 and the detail levels, especially after the grain removal done by Lucasfilm/ Lowry, isn’t anywhere near as high as they would have been if they had done a fresh scan using todays technology.

Harmy, who created the great Despecialized Editions, posted a comparison photo over at OT.com demonstrating just how little detail is lost when scaling down to 720p.

the left image is taken direct from the Blu-Ray and the right is the same image scaled down to 720p and then back up to 1080p. Now, if your TV is 1080p then either that or your player should already be upscaling the video back up from 720p to 1080p. Now as you can see there is virtually NO loss in detail.

So don’t think that just because something is 1080p that it will be far superior to the same thing in 720p

– Adywan


About doubleofive

Curator of Star Wars Visual Comparisons, webmaster for Star Wars Revisited, former co-host of Standard Orbit podcast, all around nerd.
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