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Old 2012-02-16, 16:33   Link #1
Magin
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Anime subscriptions

Considering the recent crackdown on MU, and thus a lot of fansub groups not willing to host stuff on DDL sites that have good speed, plus the fact that all the licensing I've been seeing applies more to streams than anything else... I'm coming to the conclusion that perhaps it's about time I bit the bullet and put down a few dollars a months for (hopefully) unlimited anime streaming... that, plus the fact that there's only so much room on my HD and so much anime out there

So, here are the options that I'm seeing so far:

Crunchyroll- the most popular/well known site from what I've seen, I've heard that sometimes their stream qualities can be pretty poor at time, but also they have a so-so collection, and considering I'm a year or two behind on most releases, they don't have quite a few of the older releases... namely, stuff like Baka to test, C^3, Nurari, etc. (which, all seem to be licensed by...)

Directly to Funimation- With ADV dissolving, and the stuff that came from that picking up only a few titles here and there, Funimation seems to have 99% of everything out there. Unfortunately, I don't know if it has the "single low price gets you unlimited streaming" that CR has, but they've got a lot of titles

[removed] - a lesser known site, and I'm not even sure if it technically qualifies as "legal", but they seem to have a really good selection with some searching, and are the lowest price so far

As for Hulu and crackle... well, they seem to have a pretty small selection, trying to concentrate more on TV shows than anime

So, I'd rather make an informed decision before i put any money down, and I'm hoping there are those who know more about these
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Last edited by relentlessflame; 2012-02-23 at 00:38. Reason: removed link to illegal streaming site
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Old 2012-02-16, 16:39   Link #2
Ichihara Asako
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If you're going to pay money, you may as well just get a usenet account. Streaming still sucks no matter how they swing it. Though I suppose if you're in NA it's not as bad. But you still won't get the quality you're used to if you've been downloading fansubs.
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Old 2012-02-16, 18:06   Link #3
bayoab
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Magin View Post
Directly to Funimation- With ADV dissolving, and the stuff that came from that picking up only a few titles here and there, Funimation seems to have 99% of everything out there. Unfortunately, I don't know if it has the "single low price gets you unlimited streaming" that CR has, but they've got a lot of titles
Most of FUNimation's stuff is free. Their pay service just gets you more stuff/stuff early and better quality streams.

And you missed neo-ADV's streaming service.
http://www.theanimenetwork.com/

Quote:
[removed] - a lesser known site, and I'm not even sure if it technically qualifies as "legal", but they seem to have a really good selection with some searching, and are the lowest price so far
So illegal it's amazing they haven't been shut down by FUNimation.

Last edited by relentlessflame; 2012-02-23 at 00:38. Reason: edited quote
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Old 2012-02-17, 00:09   Link #4
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Pay for it if you want to support the author, but if you are paying it because you want better quality...might as well not buy the subscription, IMO. Fansub streaming is nowhere near dead from what I have seen. You just have to look for it.
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Old 2012-02-17, 03:42   Link #5
creb
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I had a Crunchyroll sub when they first started. Was actually ok, even if they didn't have a single show I actually wanted to watch. Just wanted to support what had initially seemed like a serious effort to be a different type of streaming service, run by nerds who understood you need to have actual bandwidth if you want to stream something. Unsubscribed when they changed their streaming tech to buffer at a fixed speed that was faaaaaaaaaar slower than what they originally streamed/buffered at (originally, I'd have an episode completely buffered within a minute or two). All of a sudden, despite my 50 MB/s ISP, I'd have an episode interrupt constantly to re-buffer.

That was several years ago. It's possible they've improved since then, but I wouldn't know, as I've never bothered to give them another chance. Felt betrayed and all that jazz. That constantly interrupted stream was the type of streaming that was the norm back then, and the entire reason I had given them money in the first place was because they weren't like that originally. So, I knew they didn't have to be shitty, when their service did become shitty, so...yea. Plus, they never subbed the OP/EDs. Which is almost as bad an offense as purposefully throttling their stream/buffer speed.

I assume, based off your post, that you have reasons for not using bittorrent. Many fansubbers have IRC bots. I imagine third party individuals do their best to post files to usenet as well. I have a usenet account, but I admit I have never actually tried to use it for anime. That said, I just did a few random searches for currently airing shows and I'm finding them all available on usenet, so it seems like it would be a viable alternative. Usenet subscriptions are cheap if you use usenet a lot. Otherwise, they're probably not worth it.

Can't really speak for any other streaming sites. I've tried Hulu when it was in closed beta, but I have no patience for commercials (I haven't actually owned a TV in almost ten years, nor have I watched a commercial-except when at a friend's house-in that time period either), so have not used it since.

Animenewsnetwork has tried to have streams, but their servers have historically been gawdawful (I can't overstate how bad their servers are), and a quick perusal of their videos shows pretty horrible quality (and seem to use Hulu for any current shows). At least if you go with Crunchyroll, they are doing up to 1080p, I believe.

I suppose one day I'll be forced to a streaming site, but I will fight it tooth and nail unless Crunchyroll has become decent in the years I haven't bothered to give it another shot. I say Crunchyroll, because as far as I can tell, they're the best of the lot available now.
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Old 2012-02-17, 05:15   Link #6
speedyexpress48
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The only thing keeping me away from bittorrent is the slow speed. Otherwise...yeah.
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Old 2012-02-17, 09:41   Link #7
gsilver
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Crunchyroll has been good for me. For my connection, they got things to play smoothly, long before Youtube got their act together (which is OK now, but had badly buffered in the past).

Given that they don't require a membership for 99% of their content (basically everything but the newest episodes, and a few random shows, like Fairy tale), you can easily give their SD feeds another shot, and if that works, tons of people have unused 24 hour passes for you to try out the HD feeds.
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Old 2012-02-18, 14:32   Link #8
blackstormattack
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I had crunchyroll for a time, but now I just enjoy most streaming sites because crunchyroll subs arent that good and they don't have all the anime I want...
And the fact that I find the crunchyroll site not that handy.

Last edited by blackstormattack; 2012-02-20 at 17:18.
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Old 2012-02-19, 05:52   Link #9
Sides
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Have to agree with most of you guys, the current subscription streaming model is to primitive, to even ask people for money.
They should at least allow people to download the episodes/movies, by applying drm to it, like expires after 14 days or such. The problem with streaming is that you will still use the same amount of data transferred over the network, so it makes no difference if you stream or download, except you will not be bugged by buffering issues, network interference or low speed limiting you to low res videos/option.
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Old 2012-02-19, 08:27   Link #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sides View Post
They should at least allow people to download the episodes/movies, by applying drm to it, like expires after 14 days or such. The problem with streaming is that you will still use the same amount of data transferred over the network, so it makes no difference if you stream or download, except you will not be bugged by buffering issues, network interference or low speed limiting you to low res videos/option.
While this will be of no interest to english speakers I wanted to say that there is a small french startup called wakanim that offers not only DRM downloads but also DRM free downloads.So once you download it it's yours,you can do whatever you want with it.

Sure it's "only" hardsubed 8 bit H.264/MP4 and not softsub 10 bit H.264/MKV but unlike fansubbers they wanted to make something compatible with most devices.

Still,I never thought I'd see someone offer DRM free downloads so soon.The streams are completely free so you can watch the show before deciding if you want to buy it.
The selection is also quite limited,generally only a couple shows per season (this season they're simulcasting Ano Natsu) but I really appreciate the iniciative
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Old 2012-02-20, 14:57   Link #11
SeijiSensei
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Quote:
Originally Posted by totoum View Post
While this will be of no interest to english speakers I wanted to say that there is a small french startup called wakanim that offers not only DRM downloads but also DRM free downloads.So once you download it it's yours,you can do whatever you want with it.
I tried to watch the stream for Usagi Drop and was region-blocked.

A DRM-free episode appears to cost a bit under 1.50 euro, though I'd imagine I'd be blocked from the downloads as well.

I'm surprised the production committees let them sell DRM-free files. Are they simply less afraid of French versions being redistributed than English ones? (Assuming they even think this way; any reasonable anime rights holder would have to operate on the presumption that most everything will be available illegally and act accordingly.)
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Old 2012-02-20, 15:33   Link #12
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Streaming provides a lower quality product compared to fansubs. Video quality is okay at best, it requires a fast and always on internet connection, it's region locked, you can't keep it for later, less selection, etc. The only redeeming quality is simulcasting, which is pointless if you don't have time to watch before the speed subs come out.

The only reason really to pay for streaming is to support the creators imho. I would personally buy DVDs/BRDs and merch than pay for streaming though, you get more power to choose what shows/companies you support individually and you are getting something out of the deal as well.

Torrents are usually as fast as or faster for me compared to XDCC and DDL's, so I'm pretty sure there's a problem somewhere if they are slower.
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Old 2012-02-20, 20:15   Link #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Magin View Post

[removed] - a lesser known site, and I'm not even sure if it technically qualifies as "legal", but they seem to have a really good selection with some searching, and are the lowest price so far
[removed] is obviously pirate. Never pay for pirated anime, its about the dumbest thing an anime fan can do. I have to wonder at what point that companies don't go after the people who are paying to keep it afloat
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Last edited by relentlessflame; 2012-02-23 at 00:39. Reason: removed name of illegal streaming site
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Old 2012-02-21, 08:06   Link #14
SeijiSensei
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Originally Posted by Zeroryoko1974 View Post
[removed] is obviously pirate. Never pay for pirated anime, its about the dumbest thing an anime fan can do. I have to wonder at what point that companies don't go after the people who are paying to keep it afloat
Sites like these were the principal target of SOPA/PIPA. It's difficult to bring suit against them since they are located in foreign countries. It's also difficult to subpoena their membership lists for the same reason.

Last edited by relentlessflame; 2012-02-23 at 00:39. Reason: edit quote
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Old 2012-02-21, 09:28   Link #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeijiSensei View Post
I'm surprised the production committees let them sell DRM-free files. Are they simply less afraid of French versions being redistributed than English ones?
I see no other explenation except that one.But even that still surprises since France has a reputation for being a country prone to pirating and that doesn't explain why other french licencors havn't done the same.
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Old 2012-02-21, 09:32   Link #16
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Maybe they just realised how useless DRM is?

*optimist*
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Old 2012-02-21, 23:37   Link #17
Vexx
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Its more the case Europe has a better idea than the US on "user rights" --- much of what the RIAA/etc would like to call "piracy" is perfectly legal there and there are more restrictions on what "content owners" can assert.

Oh, and piracy is high seas violence and mayhem -- we're discussing copyright infringement. Letting the RIAA/etc frame the discussion with their misuse of language cripples reasonable dispute and critique.
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Old 2012-02-22, 01:01   Link #18
speedyexpress48
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Well, pirates were heroes to some people and villains to others...er...

Is there another connection between online piracy and rough seas piracy?
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Old 2012-02-22, 05:14   Link #19
Vexx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by speedyexpress48 View Post
Well, pirates were heroes to some people and villains to others...er...

Is there another connection between online piracy and rough seas piracy?
Its a marketing term the content gatekeepers have framed copyright infringers with. Let me know when copyright infringers storm Sony or Disney with guns and knives to murder the staff and loot the vaults.... then we can make some sort of pirate allusion.

Outside of that, people who take up the "pirate" moniker (like the Pirate Party) are thinking of the fantasy pirates (e.g. Captain Jack Sparrow) but the prosecutors/lawyers are pushing the image of, say, Somali thugs/gangsters in their boats waylaying cargo ships and kidnapping/murdering people. False correlation all the way from "downloading a file".
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Old 2012-02-22, 23:33   Link #20
Quikbeam
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I have actually had a good experience with my subscription to Crunchyroll, i have been subscribed since they annouced they would be switching to legal streaming. I dont really use their forums, or really use them for anything other than anime. But generally if you stream shows at 720p. the quality is pretty good and comparable to downloadable versions of the shows. Crunchyroll did use to have 3 issues,

First was they seemed to focus on shows i was not interested at all, and not on the shows i really wanted to watch. They have really worked towards expanding their selection of shows every season, and now they actually have a good selection of shows for people to watch. I think everyone will find atleast 1 show each season they will enjoy, they have a good variety.

The second issue is that sometimes the shows i really did want to watch would be released for streaming a couple of days after the fansubs were. which will continue to happen, and if you live outside of the US, you wount have access to all the shows. When i travel to South America, i lose access to many of the shows on the site.

Third is the fact that some episodes will only stay up for a limited amount of time, So with some shows, if you want to rewatch them, you simply wount be able to do so, because due to licensing agreements, they will be taken down. For example, fairy tail only has 4 or 5 episodes available at a time. so if for some reason you are unable to watch the show for a month, you will permanently lose access to the episode.

However, if you are not like me who has the need to store anime shows until the box sets come out, and just watch shows once, then streaming is definitely a good option.
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