One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Richard Kaufman » September 17th, 2014, 9:42 pm

Chris, I assume that like almost every remote control for a DVD player, yours has a "next" button that can be pressed to jump to the beginning of the next trick or description?
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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby MManchester » September 17th, 2014, 10:28 pm

Visit any other building in the city and the elevator will take you to the fifth floor by pressing the corresponding number on the keypad. Arrive at Dan and Dave Industries and there is no elevator keypad. To reach the fifth floor you have to stop at floors one through four first. But the elevator is very pretty to ride in.
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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Roger M. » September 17th, 2014, 10:33 pm

Chris, you only have to worry about whether it's a mouse/remote in your hand, if you actually own the DVD's.

Problem solved!

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Roger M. » September 17th, 2014, 10:36 pm

MManchester wrote: Arrive at Dan and Dave Industries and there is no elevator keypad.

Ahhh, you've missed the fact that at Dan and Dave Industries there is no elevator!

You'll have to take the stairs, where - "yes", you'll have to go past one floor to get to the floor above it.

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Chris Aguilar » September 17th, 2014, 11:39 pm

Richard Kaufman wrote:Chris, I assume that like almost every remote control for a DVD player, yours has a "next" button that can be pressed to jump to the beginning of the next trick or description?

Are you really suggesting this as a true (equal) alternative to being able to jump directly to the exact bit of video one desires?

With any DVD, why should one be forced to "click, click, click" sequentially (and ad-nauseum) to get to specific chapter, when a simple menu can get one there with one (or perhaps two) clicks?

Is the desire for proper menus/navigation really that unreasonable?

I"m not willing to give any DVD a pass on the basics (sound, navigation, etc.) no matter what the content (or hype/"event status"/whatever.)
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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Chris Aguilar » September 18th, 2014, 12:01 am

Roger M. wrote:Chris, you only have to worry about whether it's a mouse/remote in your hand, if you actually own the DVD's.

Problem solved!

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Bill Mullins » September 18th, 2014, 12:09 am

Roger M. wrote: Taking the original discs as a benchmark, this new boxed set is equivalent to 6 DVD's worth of material.


The originals were tapes, not discs. Reformation was only one trick -- not that long.

This new set fits on 3 DVDs. It is 3 DVD's worth of material.

Chris Aguilar wrote:Hm, so an owner of these dvds who desires to view a specific trick explanation would have to repeatedly click "Next" to get to the desired effect and then grope around for the actual explanation via fast forwarding. Still sounds like a major pain in the ass to me.


There used to be a format of video, where if you wanted to go from one part to another, you'd have to push a fast-forward button and wait for as long as FORTY-FIVE SECONDS to get there. We didn't have these new-fangled "next" features. Some guy named Hollingworth released one, a video tape it was called, and people have given more than $150 for it even though it was USED and it didn't even include a deck of cards and it was only ONE trick.

What's the phrase -- "first world problems"?

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Richard Kaufman » September 18th, 2014, 12:20 am

No, of course it's not equal. There should be a full menu so you can jump to any performance or explanation. However we don't know if the lack of radio buttons and menu are at Guy's request.

Here's an equivalent (of sorts): Harry Lorayne never describes the effect of a trick before he explains it. This is purposefully done so that you won't dismiss the trick before reading the explanation. I did this, too, for many years until Larry Jennings yelled at me about it and said, "You better explain what the damn effect is at the beginning of each trick in MY books!" I was not one to disobey.
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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Chris Aguilar » September 18th, 2014, 12:29 am

Bill Mullins wrote:What's the phrase -- "first world problems"?


So... It looks like I've got my answer now.

Having the most minimal expectation of basic (sound, menus, navigation) DVD features (in a product costing $150) really is unreasonable. :ugeek:

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Chris Aguilar » September 18th, 2014, 12:42 am

Richard Kaufman wrote:No, of course it's not equal. There should be a full menu so you can jump to any performance or explanation.

Agreed.

And (fancy box, deck, certificate,etc.) notwithstanding, this is still an educational set of DVDs. Unless Guy has some really strange ideas about how people learn, I cannot fathom any compelling reason for leaving out such basic functionality.

The Lorayne comparison doesn't work for me at all. What Harry was doing was somewhat unusual at the time. Providing menus in educational (hell even non educational) DVDs is standard, the norm, not some kind of crazy, unexpected, extra-special added functionality.

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Bill Mullins » September 18th, 2014, 1:11 am

Chris Aguilar wrote:
Bill Mullins wrote:What's the phrase -- "first world problems"?


So... It looks like I've got my answer now.

Having the most minimal expectation of basic (sound, menus, navigation) DVD features (in a product costing $150) really is unreasonable. :ugeek:


Wanting it isn't unreasonable. What does seem a little over the top is the amount of emphasis you are placing on it not being there.

Here's how I would allocate the $150:

Magic content: $135
Deck of Cards: $10
Fancy-schmancy box: $2
Transfer of old videotape material to DVD for convenience of viewing, compared to VHS: $3

And if it were on remastered DVDs with full menus, etc:

Content: $135
Deck of Cards: $10
Fancy-schmancy box: $2
Transfer of old videotape material to remastered DVDs authored with extensive chapter menus for convenience of viewing: $5.

Seriously -- is the missing feature so important, relative to what you ARE getting, that it's that big a deal? If you had the set as it currently exists, and someone offered to swap your existing set for one that had the menus you want, how much cash would you pitch into the deal to make the trade happen? More than a couple bucks?

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Chris Aguilar » September 18th, 2014, 1:30 am

Bill Mullins wrote:Wanting it isn't unreasonable. What does seem a little over the top is the amount of emphasis you are placing on it not being there.

I can't agree.

Regardless of the contents of any particular DVD, I don't think it's unreasonable (or "over the top", "first world problems", etc.) to expect to have the basics (sound, menus, navigation,etc.) covered. The potential lack of attention to said basics in an otherwise polished (and pricey) educational DVD set is a bit puzzling.

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Roger M. » September 18th, 2014, 1:47 am

Chris Aguilar wrote:The potential lack of attention to said basics in an otherwise polished (and pricey) DVD set is a bit puzzling.


I actually agree with Chris here.
Issues like the audio sync problem, and even decisions on menu creation occur not at the pressing stage when others are in control, but at the authoring stage when quality control and attention to detail are the most critical, and when the creators and producers should be paying 100% attention to what's going on, and running every disc (in the authoring software) six ways to Sunday looking for any residual or undiscovered issues.

I think it's more than fair to state that it seems there was a definite lack of attention in some key areas. It's not a deal breaker for me, and as noted earlier, I love the contents of this boxed set.
But that doesn't preclude noting negative issues that shouldn't be mine to discover after I've parted with my $150.00.

Perhaps all the attention was being focused on the fancy bits like the box and the deck of cards rather than the DVD authoring process - who knows ... but menu structure and audio sync aren't difficult to achieve, and are more of an obligation owed the customer than they are some sort of added bonus the customer should be thankful for getting fixed weeks or months (or maybe not at all) after the customer takes delivery.

In this case, it's fair and factual to say the buyers didn't get what they paid for. Somebody wasn't paying enough attention at a critical crossroads in the creation of the DVD's.

It's all a matter of perspective and degree, but not getting what you paid for is ... well ... still not getting what you paid for.

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Chris Aguilar » September 18th, 2014, 12:28 pm

Well put Roger.

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Ted M » September 18th, 2014, 2:58 pm

I believe pirates distributed a version of the Star Wars prequels with JarJar Binks edited out.

Maybe the pirates will add menus and chapter breaks for Dan and Dave.

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Richard Kaufman » September 18th, 2014, 3:26 pm

I've edited all the Star Wars prequels out of my little world by pretending they don't exist. Life is better that way.
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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Ian Kendall » September 18th, 2014, 4:44 pm


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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Ian Kendall » September 18th, 2014, 4:47 pm

While Chris is certainly making a mountain out of a mole hill, it is a mole hill with some merit. Given that the chapter points are there, and that the Twins are not unfamiliar with DVD authouring, it does strike me as an odd omission.

Having said that, it's moot to me. Unless someone is feeling very generous towards me this Crimbo, it's unlikely that I'll need to worry much about it. Like Chris.

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Chris Aguilar » September 18th, 2014, 5:44 pm

Ian Kendall wrote:While Chris is certainly making a mountain out of a mole hill, it is a mole hill with some merit.

I don't consider basic "sound/menu/navigation" to be "molehills" but your mileage may vary... :ugeek:

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Ian Kendall » September 19th, 2014, 2:42 am

My point was that they are certainly not mountains, especially when you don't own the product...

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby erdnasephile » September 19th, 2014, 6:55 am

It's a shame we aren't talking about the material instead of the DVD authoring flaws.

Like Dustin, I thought the cannibal cards routine was one of the best things in the set. The new Cassandra is a real fooler as well.

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Chris Aguilar » September 19th, 2014, 10:43 am

Ian Kendall wrote:My point was that they are certainly not mountains, especially when you don't own the product...

They are certainly mountains to me, a Hollingworth fan (and perhaps other potential purchasers) with a serious interest in knowing the facts about a product before laying down that sort of cash.

I'm always confused by the suggestion that prior research / conversation used toward making informed purchasing decisions should be curtailed (or denigrated as "molehills", "first world problems, etc.") because one "doesn't own the product..."

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby billmccloskey » September 19th, 2014, 11:30 am

"Seriously -- is the missing feature so important, relative to what you ARE getting, that it's that big a deal?"

Let's look at it from a different angle. If you purchase a book for $150, but the binding is screwed up, the pages are falling out, and there is no index or table of context, do you still think that is a minor issue?

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Bill Mullins » September 19th, 2014, 4:37 pm

billmccloskey wrote:"Seriously -- is the missing feature so important, relative to what you ARE getting, that it's that big a deal?"

Let's look at it from a different angle. If you purchase a book for $150, but the binding is screwed up, the pages are falling out, and there is no index or table of context, do you still think that is a minor issue?


Apples and oranges. A book with a screwed up binding and loose pages is much more non-functional than the DVDs we are talking about here. At that point it is no longer a book.

The reason that I have said, and continue to say, that this is not as big a deal as Chris is making of it (in reference to the missing menu/chapter headings) is that when this material was released originally, on video tape, it had none of these features, and it was consistently well reviewed. Yes, we expect things to be a certain way now, but these DVDs are a better value for the money now than VHS copies of Routines + London Collection + Reformation were then.

The sound sync issue should get fixed, and apparently the folks at D&D are working on that. This other stuff falls into the "It would be nice to have it, but meh" category. BluRay definition would be nice. 3D would be nice. But as it is, you are getting 8 hours of video of great magic from a great magician, in a form that is more convenient to use than anything that existed in magic 15 years ago.

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Bill Mullins » September 19th, 2014, 4:42 pm

In the Aug 2000 issue of Genii, Matthew Field reviewed a VHS tape of Michael Ammar's The Exciting World of Magic and Complete Introduction to Coin Magic. These were also released on DVD (and apparently were L&L's first DVD releases). Richard Kaufman added this note to the end of Matt's review:

Notes on the DVD versions: DVDs take a lot of time and money to properly program, and it's obvious that neither was spent on these discs. When put into the DVD player they run exactly like a videotape: no menu pops up at the beginning to instruct you about the contents, or how to utilize the nonexistent special features that could have made these something more than recycled videotapes. You have to figure out on your own that you must search for the chapters, which are so badly designed that you have to step through numerous screens and boxes to find the particular item that interests you. Extremely annoying. All of this could have been solved if L&L had bothered to look at any type of DVD currently on the market, which always give chapter listings on a separate paper insert or the back of the box, allowing you random access—which is the whole point of making a magic DVD, isn't it?—to exactly the sleight or trick you want.

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Ian Kendall » September 19th, 2014, 5:36 pm

because one "doesn't own the product..."


I was thinking of the several times in this thread that you announced that you were not going to buy the set.

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby AJM » September 19th, 2014, 6:09 pm

Bill - sorry, I don't agree with you on this one despite what your latest web research has turned up.

Ian - I'm afraid I agree with Chris on this one, at least he has had some pre-warning on issues that others who purchased the set, myself included, are only now learning off. He, and others, are likely 'lost sales' which will result in D&D holding a remainder of this limited edition set (which, in effect, becomes no longer 'limited'.)

Richard - with all due respect, the notion that the omission of chapter breaks was due to 'artistic reasons' is absurd. The reason they are missing is down purely to carelessness.

Incidentally, as a paying customer, I've had no communication or courtesy call from the sellers on these issues so I wonder where all the chatter about potential fixes is coming from.

On the DVD v VHS front, one of they key benefits of moving from an analogue to a digital medium was to have the ability to directly access the data required.
No DVD should be released without this most basic of functionality - if David Lynch wants to be arty-farty about it he should release his films on VHS.

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby billmccloskey » September 19th, 2014, 6:20 pm

"Apples and oranges. A book with a screwed up binding and loose pages is much more non-functional than the DVDs we are talking about here. At that point it is no longer a book."


See I would disagree with you there. A book with pages falling out, is still a readable book. I can do all sorts of things including putting the pages in a binder. I can still read the pages and get the content. A dvd with sync issues is unwatchable. A book with loose pages is still a book, a dvd with sync issues is garbage.

But you didn't address, to me the bigger concern: would you pay $150 for a book that had no index or table of context?

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Dustin Stinett » September 19th, 2014, 6:22 pm

Obviously Chris has his reasons, he's made them clear, so who are we to question them? It's his money.

I would like to know what the price point needs to be (for the discs only) given what he knows about them now.

By comparison, there is a set of three discs by Karl Hein that, combined, have less than 3 hours of material on them and they cost $35 each. They each come in a simple cardboard sleeve; not even a DVD box. I've not seen a price for them combined, so that is $105. I questioned that price in my review, but the consensus seems to be that card folks like Karl's stuff, so they pay the price.

These are $50 each for almost 9 hours of material. And (if you want it or not) it comes with extra stuff.

So, again, what is the value of the magic alone?

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Chris Aguilar » September 19th, 2014, 6:26 pm

Ian Kendall wrote:
because one "doesn't own the product..."


I was thinking of the several times in this thread that you announced that you were not going to buy the set.

Since I can't say for certain that I'll never purchase this in some form some day (a non broken version, a streaming version, a re-purposed version, etc.) I remain an interested party.

I'm not certain what the point of denigrating my (quite valid to me) concerns as "molehills" was meant to accomplish.

I'm a huge fan of Guy's work and was looking forward to this release.

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Ian Kendall » September 19th, 2014, 7:02 pm

One last before bed...

I'm not certain what the point of denigrating my (quite valid to me) concerns as "molehills" was meant to accomplish.


It wasn't denigrating. More of an observation on how you tend to latch onto something and then not let go, seemingly (from the outside, anyway) long after the point has been made. Not unlike a puppy with a blanket. There's a word that you like to use from time to time; tiresome.

I hope they sort out the sync issues, and that you get the material somewhere down the line.

Edit: On second thoughts, a better way to explain; referring to the old saying of 'mountains out of molehills', and the implication that one is making more of a problem than is merited, does not say that the problem does not exist. It's just a question of scale.

Edit edit: another thought; you are IT literate. What effort would it take you to rip the DVDs with their chapter points, and then recompile with your own menu (I reckon you could do each one in half an hour, tops). That way, you get the digital content, but with a menu that saves you three clicks each time you want to get to a specific point.

Or, open the DVDs in VLC or Media Player and access the chapters directly from there.

Or, Rip the individual chapters and compile to MP4 so you can watch individual routines on your tablet.

There are so many options...
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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Tom Stone » September 19th, 2014, 7:07 pm

Chris Aguilar wrote:
Ian Kendall wrote:
because one "doesn't own the product..."


I was thinking of the several times in this thread that you announced that you were not going to buy the set.

Since I can't say for certain that I'll never purchase this in some form some day (a non broken version, a streaming version...

Yes, because streaming versions are known to have chapter navigation...?

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Chris Aguilar » September 19th, 2014, 7:19 pm

Dustin Stinett wrote:Obviously Chris has his reasons, he's made them clear, so who are we to question them? It's his money.

I would like to know what the price point needs to be (for the discs only) given what he knows about them now.

That would be tough to say, as (based on what I already own, video and book-wise) it seems (based on the reviews) as though there's not a huge amount (perhaps one dvd or less) worth of actual new stuff that I'd actually be interested in purchasing at this point.

I just caught Hein's Lecture (Great!) live, so your comparison there was of interest to me. Many people attending the lecture didn't bat an eye and purchased the whole lot of DVDs (as you said, pricey). Hein was also selling a stock CD, for $30 (which I purchased) loaded with great write ups with just about everything (save the shuffle work) contained on those DVDs. The price differential in material was roughly $130.

For some, there's much value in having material in video form. And if that doesn't necessarly work for me (value-wise) I respect that it does for others. I truly appreciate that (while you might not 100% agree with them) you accept my concerns as valid to me.
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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Chris Aguilar » September 19th, 2014, 7:36 pm

Ian Kendall wrote:One last before bed...
...
It wasn't denigrating.

I'm fine with trusting forums members to read what we've both written and to make that determination for themselves.

I'm not inordinately fond of repeating myself either, and have admittedly failed here in that regard by continuing to dignify yours (and others) non constructive commentary ("Molehills" "First world problems", etc.)

Ian Kendall wrote:another thought; you are IT literate.

Speaking of being unnecessarily contentious...

I'm quite familiar with your "so many options" and have no desire to waste time fixing issues that shouldn't even be issues (especially at a $150 price point.)

I'm just sort of unreasonable that way. :ugeek:
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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby MManchester » September 19th, 2014, 7:50 pm

If I was in a position to sell something for $150 and learned there was a problem with the product, it seems obvious the first thing I would do is immediately make arrangements with customers about how to correct the situation. So Andrew's lack of contact is really unfortunate.

On Sept 5 there is a message on their Twitter account that reads:

Now that many of you have received Hollingworth Collection, we'd love to know what you think. Submit your review at http://shop.dananddave.com/hollingworth-collection.html


Visiting the link shows that no one has submitted a review. There's no mention of the technical difficulties, either on Twitter or Facebook.

There have been two threads here about this product yielding thousands of views, yet no one from Dan and Dave Industries has ever made any comment. Presumably they're aware of the Genii forum and the potential customers it reaches or do they just not know about the thread. I hope that they would care.

If they're going to give themselves a highfalutin name then they need to take these issues more seriously. It does seem that a bit of shine has been taken off their efforts as a result of the concerns that have been expressed with so little response.
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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Leonard Hevia » September 19th, 2014, 8:26 pm

This item is on my bucket list. I don't consider the lack of menus as a negative. On the contrary, it will recreate that feeling of watching it on videotape as I did the first time I purchased them. Pressing a few extra buttons to arrive at a favorite effect on a DVD is no more annoying to me than searching for a favorite effect in a book--especially a large one like The Collected Almanac.

I'm just sort of reasonable that way. 8-)

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby erdnasephile » September 19th, 2014, 8:32 pm

AJM wrote:...Incidentally, as a paying customer, I've had no communication or courtesy call from the sellers on these issues so I wonder where all the chatter about potential fixes is coming from...



I can't speak for others, but I emailed D and D customer service early on Re: the sound sync issue and received an email reply that same day. They apologized for the error in the disc. They said they were working on a fix, and they asked for patience while they worked on getting a replacement disc out to me.

I get that mistakes happen. I'm a movie aficionado, and I have certainly seen huge, seemingly obvious, errors in blu-rays from big Hollywood studios that forced recalls of thousands of discs. (When those kind of errors happen, the messages on the Blu-ray forums sound a lot like some of those in this thread ;) )

In any event, I'll take D and D at their word that they are going to make it right. I'll post back when/if the fix occurs.

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Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Richard Kaufman » September 19th, 2014, 8:54 pm

Here is the sequence of events:

Dustin Stinett and I received our sets in advance of most others so we could get it reviewed in Genii (it is standard practice to send copies--called "screeners"--out to reviewers first).

Dustin reported the out of sync audio to me. I reported it to Dave Buck--he had no idea there was a problem. This also mirrors the scenario when discs are often shipped out in the tens of thousands by major studios with a defect.

I then alerted Guy Hollingworth to the problem. Guy was on vacation and had not see then set yet.

I have not heard a peep from any of the parties involved since then, but I'm extremely pleased to hear that erdnasephile has heard from D&D customer service that replacement discs will be sent to customers. This is the professional approach to dealing with the issue.
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Shazzbatt
Posts: 32
Joined: December 22nd, 2012, 3:19 pm
Location: Manchester, UK

Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby Shazzbatt » September 20th, 2014, 4:29 pm

I have received the set but not yet had the chance to sit down and go through it. After reading the comments in this thread about the sound sync issues and lack of specific trick/explanation menus for the original videos I am somewhat disappointed.

I transferred my original copies from VHS to DVD some years ago and yet have hardly revisited them since then because of the pain of navigation. If they have indeed included chapter breaks then I am extremely disappointed they didn't take the next most basic step of including the relevant menus.

Like has been said, it seems that more effort has been put into the fancy box and playing cards (which are of little value to me other than "that looks quite nice") than representing the material on the disks in the best manner possible (which should surely have been their number one priority)!

The whole point of DVD over VHS is better video quality (not applicable as these have not been digitally remastered) and the convenience of navigation (not catered for). It would appear that the Buck Brothers have failed on both counts.

Whilst the material contained within this set is certainly worthwhile to the Hollingworth fan, it seems that there will be many like myself who now view the set with some disappointment rather than complete satisfaction. Considering the blurb from the Bucks about how influential Guy was to them it seems that they have not done justice to his excellent legacy of work.

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erdnasephile
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Joined: January 17th, 2008, 12:00 pm

Re: One Man's View of The Hollingworth Collection

Postby erdnasephile » September 20th, 2014, 5:49 pm

Shazzbatt wrote:...The whole point of DVD over VHS is better video quality (not applicable as these have not been digitally remastered) and the convenience of navigation (not catered for). It would appear that the Buck Brothers have failed on both counts...


One small point: although the footage for "The London Collection" and "Routines" does not appear to be remastered, it should look better on a HD screen than the old VCR tapes IF your Blu-ray player or computer drive supports a high def signal as well as upcoding. It won't look as good as true high def, but it should be an improvement. Also, the new Reformation footage is of true DVD resolution.


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