What is the definitive version of The Transformers (G1) cartoon on DVD?

Discussion in 'Transformers General Discussion' started by JonLeung, Aug 3, 2008.

  1. JonLeung

    JonLeung Member

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    Hi, everyone, I've been a long-time lurker; this is my first post. :p 

    As much of a Transformers fan as I think I am, I realized that I don't have The Transformers (G1) on DVD. I should probably remedy this.

    I looked around and I saw American (Rhino?) box sets (Season 1, 2 part 1, 2 part 2, and 3 & 4), but all four of them are pricey. I've seen rips of episodes with additional sound fx that are really bad and they sound like they might have come from this release. What bonuses come with these box sets?

    Then I've also seen that the all four seasons, plus the 1986 movie, are available together in a Chinese tin box set, and costs considerably less. In one box instead of four, the cost of shipping won't be as bad (I live in Canada). I've heard I have to switch the audio to English, a minor inconvenience, but how much of the menus are in Chinese? (I may be Chinese but I can't read it!) And is it true that they keep the original English audio without the additional weird sound fx?

    Any suggestions/comments about these and other official G1 DVD box sets would be greatly appreciated! :D 
     
  2. Voiceroy

    Voiceroy Trans-fo-mahs!

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    The Chinese box set has been well-received by fans (as covered in at least a half-dozen threads here in the last few months).

    The G1 Rhino box sets (and there's actually 5 sets, not 4) are pricey because Rhino lost the license and the sets have since gone out of print. The Rhino sets also get mixed reviews from fans, but they're largely negative for technical reasons:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Transformers_(TV_series)#DVD_criticism
    http://transformers.wikia.com/wiki/Kid_Rhino

    I've seen the Metrodome UK sets get good reviews (they certainly have more bonus content), but if you live in the US you need a region-free DVD player to view them.

    So if you want them now and you live in the US, buy the Chinese box set through Amazon or check to see if a member here is selling one in the Junkion Exchange forum.

    Otherwise, I would sit tight and wait for Hasbro to release the inevitable volume and/or box sets to tie in with the box office release of TF:ROTF since they regained their Sunbow library earlier this year.
     
  3. Fit For natalie

    Fit For natalie tfwiki nerd

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    Yeah, but Hasbro has to wait for somebody to pony up the cash for the license to do the DVDs. They certainly won't be doing the DVDs themselves.


    Madman's G1 set from Australia is another option. Audio-video wise its the same as Metrodome's, I believe. It has all of Rhino's extras, most of the G1 scripts in PDF format as seen in the Metrodome set and a few of Madman's own extras, such as an audio commentary on MTMTE Part 1 by Wally Burr.

    It also has the best packaging presentation of the currently available DVD sets, too: an embossed tin with (for some reason) G1 character models printed on the bottom, placed inside a mini recreation of a G1 toy box. On the back of the 'toy box' is a fake bio, listing the features of the DVD and a fake tech spec meter telling you how great this set is in caterogies such as 'story' and 'appeal'. Inside the tin on top of the DVD cases is artwork of Optimus Prime's Matrix chamber by Nick Roche and our very own Josh. Why is it there? To paraphrase Botch's review "to simply look cool."

    Also by the two artists is an 8-page comic written by Furman, set in 2001 cartoon continuity showing (a bit) of the Autobot evacuation from Cybertron and hinting of Hot Rod's destiny.

    Bad News: With the weak US dollar, the RRP on this is abit high compared to other sets. Its Region 4, and like Metrodome's set, uses the PAL colour standard.


    A note: Since TV Loonland sold their license for Sunbow's catalogue to Hasbro, Metrodome no longer has the rights to make G1 DVDs for the United Kingdom, so any DVDs at retailers now or in storage will be the last you'll see from them.

    The same likely applies to Madman, as they got their license from Loonland. Hope they didn't get too burned from it. Hasbro's announcement came shortly after the release of the Victory/Zone DVD set.
     
  4. iron maniac

    iron maniac Help Uncle Sixshot, Help!

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    This question gets asked all the time it seems.
    The Chinese tin set is the best for the price IMO. Got mine for $40 shipped.
    Region Free
    Remastered Picture
    5.1 Stereo sound
     
  5. Batman

    Batman The Dark Knight TFW2005 Supporter

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    Are they not all the same remastered episodes from the 35 mm film masters?

    I have all the Rhino sets. IMO they are pretty good. Its an 80's childrens cartoon, how much can you expect from it?
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2008
  6. iron maniac

    iron maniac Help Uncle Sixshot, Help!

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    They might be from the same film master(I really don't know the actual source of the masters from the Chinese Tin Set) but the Chinese set has vastly superior visuals. On the bonus disc there are actual side-by-side comparison screens between the Rhino picture and the Chinese set along with the labor-intensive steps taken in the remastering process. The Rhino set picture is bleak and washed-out color-wise while the Chinese set is bright and beautiful. The bonus disc humorously refers to the Rhino set as "Dr. Rhino".
     

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