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Old 2008-03-13, 18:03   Link #81
Ledgem
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kakashi-san View Post
lol, well that was the great thing about it, that the quality was so good. Honestly I downloaded many episodes from stage 6 and I downloaded a few from BitTorrent (more so now obviously) and there is hardly any difference, if any. Even the streamed videos were amazing quality although not quite as good. The fact that the quality was a league above YouTube was one thing but the fact you could stream this quality for free was another.
I freely admit bias and I've never seen a video from Stage6, because I didn't want to install the DivX garbage on my system (it seems that Windows users were able to just install the web codec, but on the Mac OS X end it wanted to install the player and everything else). From what I understand the streamed videos were compressed with the DivX codec. If you compare a fansub that was encoded in XviD vs. a stream encoded in DivX you might not notice a difference.

I put the "might" in italics because it depends on what you're looking for. For the average viewer, they might as well be the same. When I was a fansubber it was part of my task to seek out encoding errors. I did a lot of comparisons between XviD and DivX encodes. They're almost exactly the same. When you compare them to most H.264 encodes they simply can't compete. Maybe that's a curse of fansubbing - all of those encoding errors in webstreams and XviD/DivX stand out at me. Nobody is streaming true HD content. Stage6 was probably worlds above YouTube but I'm doubtful that it could compete with downloaded fansubs.

Quote:
Many people don't even know the principles of BitTorrent and Stage 6 offered a simple alternative. I only found out about how to use BitTorrent by looking at an FAQ, even then I had to do some port fowarding to get it to download at a reasonable speed, which admittedly can be very quick. Despite that it all seems a bit complicated compared to direct dowloads and high quality streams that stage 6 offered. So I think the main reason why stage 6 was so good was because of its ease of access, like Youtube except with the quality of BitTorrent downloads. What's bad about it?
A lot of my complaints and my observations are made from the point of view of someone who was into fansubs ~8 years ago (this isn't a bragging right; I'm well aware that fansubbing is far older than that). Back then BitTorrent didn't exist. If you wanted to download you generally had to trade with friends, go through FTPs, or learn how to use IRC. Compared with the latter two options I'd say BitTorrent is sinfully easy, unless you want to understand what's going on (in which case FTP becomes the easier, though less convenient, option).

I've had this discussion before with other fansubbers and it's a somewhat shared view. Back then the fansubbing community had a very different feel to it. Everyone would be logged into fansub channels, and many people would use their connections and computers to serve the anime to others. It was slow but you were constantly reminded that these were all people that were being dealt with. The beauty of BitTorrent was that fansubbers could easily get their releases to many people without straining the connections of the volunteers. Over time fansub groups began purchasing their own servers or enlisting the aid of distribution-specialized members with access to high-speed servers. Volunteer servers dropped off, and community involvement turned instead into what are called "leechers" - the people who take and don't give back. People largely treat fansub groups as machines, if they ever even consider the group at all!

Where do sites like YouTube and Stage6 come into this? It's a further disconnection from the fansubbing community - that is, the community I knew - and it puts fansubber's efforts to waste. When I was a subber I strove for the absolute best quality, and I'm only partially ashamed to say that I spent a lot of time on making sure that my work was the best possible. Many of my fellow subbers were also perfectionists. We wanted our group's work to be the best. It was partially out of friendly (sometimes not-so-friendly) competition with other groups, partially because we were dedicated to the fans, and partially for our own pride. Sites like YouTube simply trash those efforts. Stage6 may be a step above it but I have a hard time believing that it can equal the quality of modern releases.

Yet if you've always watched anime through YouTube you wouldn't know any better. It's unthinkable to me - it'd be like going back to the way fansub quality was back in 2001, if not worse. But if it's all you've ever known, you wouldn't know that there was such a difference in quality.

I'm not really making an argument. I can't, because I've never used Stage6. These are just some ramblings. The end conclusion is that the fansubbing community that I knew and took part in, and the types of people that made it up, are largely gone. With the shifts in technology fansubs are accessible to new groups of people and in new ways; it isn't better or worse than before, just different. It's just nostalgia on my part.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kayos View Post
Also it allowed users and independent film makers to upload HD content without having to worry about damaging their movie quality.
DivX may be a lot better than YouTube but it isn't an "HD" codec - at least, not in the professional meaning of the word. If I spent a lot of money on an HD camera and wanted the full quality to be available at a reasonable file size I'd stick with H.264. Despite that I understand what you're saying and can agree with it, to an extent.
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Last edited by Ledgem; 2008-03-13 at 18:05. Reason: Forgot what year it is
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Old 2008-03-13, 18:45   Link #82
Lexander
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I think it comes down to what your definition of HD is(or weather it's wrong). Stage6 was 'visually pleasing' .

I always assumed stage6 wasn't perfect and sometimes it was obviously worse than anything I had ever downloaded directly from fansubs (i don't know the cause though so I'm not blaming divx).
At the same time the quality of the video was good enough for the times when you're impatient and just want to watch an episode. The difference between stage6 and youtube was huge for me, I went from never touching anime on youtube to watching anime on stage6.
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Old 2008-03-13, 23:17   Link #83
WanderingKnight
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Use torrents, people. P2P means that the more people connected, the more effective bandwidth usage is. Direct streaming not only yields piss-poor quality compared to fansubs (even for Stage6, and it had the further disadvantage of using a proprietary non-standard codec) and a variety of other inconveniences, it also wastes tons of bandwidth.

P2P for a greener Earth.
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Old 2008-03-13, 23:58   Link #84
vorpal83
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Let's just say using bt in Singapore has it's risks.
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Old 2008-03-14, 01:11   Link #85
Skane
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Erm... guys, Stage6 offered more than just anime you know. It was also a great site to view AMVs and other fan-made creations. It enabled fans to easily share their MQ-versions of AMVs without resorting to the eye-cancerous "quality" of YouTube. For HQ-versions, there is Anime Music Videos, which is not so straightforward as Stage6.

I have quite a substantial amount of AMVs from Stage6, and for most of them, there is no equivalent version on the AMV-site as most of them are casual works and the creators can't be bothered to set up an account on the AMV-site. Losing Stage6 is going to mean losing a lot of potentially good AMVs and other user-created content, because powers that be know that it is depressing to watch video on YouTube without wondering where the MQ/HQ-version is.

Sigh.
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Old 2008-03-14, 01:20   Link #86
NoSanninWa
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Oh thank you. The few of use that used Stage6 for AMVs are in such a minority that I'm glad you posted. Everyone goes on about their "great" video quality (which still sucks compared to BitTorrent), but everyone seems forget that it really excels for AMVs and other fanworks.
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Old 2008-03-14, 01:29   Link #87
KholdStare
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As for everything, there are pros and cons:

Pros for torrents :
-Fansubbers are more appreciated
-Far better quality.
-You can pull up the file without having to use the reliability of streaming sites.
-There is a risk of the streaming sites actually enforcing the rules and deleting the videos.
-You get good quality for personal projects, may it be avatars, AMVs, or others.
-No is loading time/you can freely seek back and forth with ease.

Cons for torrents:
-If the torrent is dead (or close to dead), streaming is a much better alternative.
-It's easier to share your favorite anime or scene with a matter of just copying and pasting websites.
-It's faster than torrents for people who do not care a lot about quality.
-It's very easy to preview/feel an anime before you commit yourself.
-If torrents are somehow banned/tracked, then this is pretty much your best alternative.

Now, I mostly use torrents, because I have a high speed connection and don't really care about waiting 1-3 hours. However, there are many shows where I have trouble finding torrents or don't want to use torrents for 6 GB with 2 seeds and 3 leechers. There are two completely separate thoughts about the quality, and it can't just be brushed aside:

1) Serious anime viewers/fansubbers care a lot about quality. YouTube is really out of the question.
2) Many casual anime viewers do not care period about quality. I've tried to convince many people but in the end, they prefer streaming sites for better access. There's really no way to convert these people at all into using torrents.

And there you have it. No matter if you strike up an excellent, well-thought argument about how torrents are better and how important it is to appreciate the fansubbers, many anime streamers just take fansubs for granted and simply cannot be converted.

---

And I'm going to throw in an idea that I know will get flamed. The animemusicvideo.org community is really good for its critique. I upload my AMVs onto there because I'm not looking for the "wow, that's great, you rox" comments, but rather, I want response from these experts who make AMVs. I do realize that there are people who just make AMVs then upload them for fun and don't really care if theirs are better than some other people's, but to me, I feel that streaming sites just ruin my AMVs' quality plus I don't get real critique, so it ends up being doubly bad for me to not upload them to the AMV site. But of course, that's my thoughts on my AMVs only.
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Old 2008-03-14, 01:44   Link #88
Skane
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KholdStare View Post
~ And I'm going to throw in an idea that I know will get flamed. The animemusicvideo.org community is really good for its critique. I upload my AMVs onto there because I'm not looking for the "wow, that's great, you rox" comments, but rather, I want response from these experts who make AMVs. I do realize that there are people who just make AMVs then upload them for fun and don't really care if theirs are better than some other people's, but to me, I feel that streaming sites just ruin my AMVs' quality plus I don't get real critique, so it ends up being doubly bad for me to not upload them to the AMV site. But of course, that's my thoughts on my AMVs only.
Which was why I specifically used the word, "casual" in my previous post. Not every AMV-maker is in it for the critique, and that's fine, since in the end, it's all about our love for anime.

Cheers.
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Old 2008-03-14, 05:22   Link #89
Kakashi
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NoSanninWa View Post
Oh thank you. The few of use that used Stage6 for AMVs are in such a minority that I'm glad you posted. Everyone goes on about their "great" video quality (which still sucks compared to BitTorrent), but everyone seems forget that it really excels for AMVs and other fanworks.
Actually I posted a link to an AMV from stage 6 in the Bleach forum. Only one person cared though . No one can watch it now because stage 6 closed down (except for me of course because I downloaded it ). I agree they had some talented people making good quality AMVs on stage 6 so that will be another thing I will miss.
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Old 2008-03-14, 11:53   Link #90
Ledgem
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KholdStare View Post
2) Many casual anime viewers do not care period about quality. I've tried to convince many people but in the end, they prefer streaming sites for better access. There's really no way to convert these people at all into using torrents.
I bet you could, unless they're using a really crummy monitor Find out what series they're into, and then get them a high-resolution fansub from that series (such as Gundam 00's jumbo-sized version, Ghost Hound's 720p version... there are a few others, it's becoming more popular to release the high-resolution versions as they become more readily available) and let them watch that. See if they go back to YouTube so readily then!
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Old 2008-03-14, 12:18   Link #91
King Lycan
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The main reason why i used Stage6 was to save some space cause my computer harddrive is full of games and there ins't any room left then i bought an external HDD and that is 40% full so stage 6 kind of saved me so room because i only download fansubs of D Gray Man, Clannad and various others i use stage6 to watch Bleach and Naurto cause IMO there not worth the space on my external HDD
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Old 2008-03-14, 12:19   Link #92
Fynal_Fyre
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
I bet you could, unless they're using a really crummy monitor Find out what series they're into, and then get them a high-resolution fansub from that series (such as Gundam 00's jumbo-sized version, Ghost Hound's 720p version... there are a few others, it's becoming more popular to release the high-resolution versions as they become more readily available) and let them watch that. See if they go back to YouTube so readily then!
I'd agree, I prefer quality in my videos, streaming doesn't quite cut it for me, I suppose you could say I'm a perfectionist, but I'd want to enjoy my anime the way it was meant to be enjoyed, in no-buffering time, fansubbed goodness, although I still only grab XViD releases, still kicks streaming on youtube to the curb IMO.

And for the record, my monitor is.....erm.....17" Samsung Syncmaster 710n, not sure if it's TN or PVA, S-PVA or what, OEM's usually don't give details.

Although, from what I know, I don't go there much, Stage6 was great for fan-content. R.I.P Stage6, we shall mourn thee.
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Old 2008-03-14, 18:19   Link #93
Defron
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KholdStare View Post
-It's very easy to preview/feel an anime before you commit yourself.
Aye, that was the only time I used stage6 for anime (and still the only reason I stream anime-- when I am checking it out to see if I will like it) otherwise I never used stage6 for watching anime.
Once I know that I like it I find someone fansubbing it.

I used stage6 for user created content (both anime and non-anime related), and as others have said there is no comparison between stage6 and youtube.

Last edited by Defron; 2008-03-14 at 19:00.
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Old 2008-03-14, 18:44   Link #94
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ledgem View Post
I bet you could, unless they're using a really crummy monitor Find out what series they're into, and then get them a high-resolution fansub from that series (such as Gundam 00's jumbo-sized version, Ghost Hound's 720p version... there are a few others, it's becoming more popular to release the high-resolution versions as they become more readily available) and let them watch that. See if they go back to YouTube so readily then!
I wish I could, but I tried. I actually brought my laptop with my downloaded episodes via torrents to these people's room, play it for them, and they're like, "Who cares? You take anime too seriously man. I just watch it when I want, so I stream."

Granted most of these people watch Naruto but still....
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Old 2008-03-14, 19:05   Link #95
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What's wrong with Naruto

Im sure Naruto has helped anime hugely. Many young boys and girls have fallen in love with it and will no doubt expand their horizens as they grow older. So everyone will benefit.

On topic - you're friends seem normal to me, just casual anime watchers and unlikely to be converted to what's considered complicated measures by downloading and watching torrents. I talked about this in an above post, maybe to everyone on this forum using Torrents is considered incredibly simple but to casual anime watchers like we all were at one point it seems complicated and therefore not worth it. Heck if my friends knew I posted on this forum they would think I'm crazy, also barely any of my friends watch anime so you're lucky you can talk to them about it
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Old 2008-03-14, 19:11   Link #96
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kakashi-san View Post
What's wrong with Naruto

Im pretty sure Naruto has helped anime hugely; many, many, many young children/teenagers have fallen in love with it and will no doubt expand their horizens as they grow older. So everyone will benefit.

On topic - you're friends seem normal to me, just casual anime watchers and unlikely to be converted to what's considered complicated measures by downloading and watching torrents. I talked about this in an above post, maybe to everyone on this forum using Torrents is considered incredibly simple but to casual anime watchers like we all were at one point it seems complicated and therefore not worth it. Heck if my friends knew I posted on this forum they would think I'm crazy, also barely any of my friends watch anime so you're lucky you can talk to them about it
There's nothing wrong with Naruto! I rated it 9/10 on AML. Seriously, check it out in my signature if you don't believe me. However, people who only watch Naruto are more likely to not care about quality. That's from my experience, and I'm really not trying to denounce anyone or anything.

But at least you agree with me here. A lot of casual anime watchers don't care at all. However, many of my friends download real movies via torrents, yet they're not arsed enough to download anime. It kinda makes me mad that they're watching that low quality, but hey, everyone has unique preferences after all.
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Old 2008-03-14, 19:22   Link #97
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Sorry I thought you were trying to down tread on Naruto like some elitist anime watchers tend to do which gets me wound up. I just misunderstood. In that case I agree with you on both points, the majority of Naruto watchers do seem to care less about quality then others but I think that's because the audience is younger on average then of other animes. This is also just from my experiece.

Personally I don't get mad if my friends watch low quality since it's hard enough to get them to watch at all, most seem stuck with the preconception that every anime is like dragonball Z and watching it should be grown out of. Of course they are wrong! But what can you do?
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Old 2008-03-14, 20:02   Link #98
Ledgem
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Originally Posted by kakashi-san View Post
Sorry I thought you were trying to down tread on Naruto like some elitist anime watchers tend to do which gets me wound up. I just misunderstood. In that case I agree with you on both points, the majority of Naruto watchers do seem to care less about quality then others but I think that's because the audience is younger on average then of other animes. This is also just from my experiece.

Personally I don't get mad if my friends watch low quality since it's hard enough to get them to watch at all, most seem stuck with the preconception that every anime is like dragonball Z and watching it should be grown out of. Of course they are wrong! But what can you do?
I have nothing against Naruto but the reason why it's beaten down is because it's pretty similar to Dragonball Z, when compared with the rest of anime. Most anime series are 24-26 episodes long and then there's closure. Finishing a series elicits one of the more beautiful sensations in anime watching - there's a sadness that you won't get to continue the story, that it's over, and there's a happiness with the entire experience of it. With series like Naruto, DBZ, or Sailor Moon, it just drags on and on. I stopped watching Naruto around episode 120 because it began to feel like it was dragging, big time. Each episode offered nothing new to the story, and fight scenes were suddenly more or less DBZ-style powerups. Compared with the beginning scenes, which utilized cunning and trickery, it was a bore.

It's difficult to keep it fresh and interesting when it's so long. It's also similar to what many American television shows do, dragging on and on until there isn't enough support to make another show. The typical 26 episode series feels very elegant by comparison. I admit that I love it when a series I like goes beyond 26 episodes, but if all series were aspiring to be 200+ episodes in length I think anime would lose a lot of appeal to me.

I also thought of a disagreement point with the "convenience" of watching anime online. Quality aside, you have to be on the internet. I don't know about the rest of you but I've watched anime on my laptop during extremely long car rides when I was younger, and I've watched anime on airplanes plenty of times before. When the internet is out it's either videogames (rare for me these days), anime (a bit more common), or... go outside (the horror, I know). Watching it where I want, how I want - that is convenience. But given that anime is my major entertainment source (I don't watch TV and 300 was the last movie I saw, which broke a long streak of not seeing any movies) I probably do take it "more seriously" than most people. As seriously as you can take entertainment, anyway.
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Old 2008-03-14, 20:48   Link #99
Lexander
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I stopped watching Naruto, but I'd be really sad if One Piece wasn't this long.
The majority of anime I watch is short though. They pack more into an episode instead of dragging it out.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KholdStare View Post
I wish I could, but I tried. I actually brought my laptop with my downloaded episodes via torrents to these people's room, play it for them, and they're like, "Who cares? You take anime too seriously man. I just watch it when I want, so I stream."

Granted most of these people watch Naruto but still....
Almost like you can't watch it when you want if it's just sitting on your hard drive
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Old 2008-03-15, 10:59   Link #100
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Just a quick thought on the Naruto points. I did and still enjoy Naruto. the length is a little annoying but its still a good show none the less. What i hate is when people only watch the english dubbed censored version, and one other series, say, bleach and think they are anime experts.

I personally only used stage6 for one series, but i was having trouble finding those videos anyways. What i didn't like was it's search function wasn't as good as say Youtube's or Veohs so i never really used it much. But still the quality was unsurpassed in the streaming world and i guess thats why they couldn't afford it.
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