Star Trek: TNG Blu-ray sample disc announced for January 31; Season 1 later in 2012 |
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Star Trek: TNG Blu-ray sample disc announced for January 31; Season 1 later in 2012 December 12, 2011

by Staff , Filed under: DVD/Blu-ray,TNG,TNG Remastered , trackback

CBS Home Entertainment has officially announced that Star Trek: The Next Generation will be available in high-definition for the first time ever on January 31, 2012. The previously announced sample disc — ‘The Next Level’ — will be followed by the complete first season Blu-ray later in 2012. Details over the jump.

‘The Next Level’, which features the two-part pilot “Encouter at Farpoint”, the season three episode “Sins of the Father” and the season five episode “The Inner Light”, is currently available for pre-order on A specific date is not given, however, CBS Home Entertainment says the complete first season of the show will be released on Blu-ray sometime in 2012.

Here’s the complete press release.


Star Trek: The Next Generation® – The Next Level Blu-ray Disc™

Will Be Released On January 31, 2012

Complete First Season Blu-ray Available Later in 2012

LOS ANGELES – The beloved series STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION® will be transferred to high definition for the first time ever and released on Blu-ray™, it was announced today by Ken Ross, Executive Vice President and General Manager of CBS Home Entertainment.

All 178 episodes from seven seasons will be transferred to true high-definition 1080p for release on Blu-ray and eventual runs on television and digital platforms both domestically and internationally.

“Fans have been clamoring for a high-definition release of STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION® for years,” said Ross. “Transferring the series to high-definition presented difficult technical challenges, but our team has come up with a process to create true 1080p HD masters with true HD visual effects. We can’t wait to show fans how pristine the series looks and sounds with our upcoming Blu-ray releases.”

Transferring STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION® to high-definition presented numerous challenges – The series was originally shot on film and then transferred to videotape, which was used to edit episodes together. In order to create true HD masters, CBS is going back to the original uncut film negative – all 25,000 plus film reels of it – and cutting the episodes together exactly the way they originally aired. The visual effects were all shot on film and will be painstakingly recompositioned, not upconverted from videotape. The newly cut film will then be transferred to true high-definition with 7.1 DTS Master Audio. Denise and Mike Okuda are consulting on the project.

While the first full season won’t be available until later in 2012, CBS Home Entertainment is releasingSTAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION® – THE NEXT LEVEL, a single Blu-ray disc to give fans a taste of the series in HD, on January 31, 2012. The disc will include the feature-length pilot – “Encounter at Farpoint” – as well as two more “fan favorite” episodes, “The Inner Light” (Season 5) and “Sins of the Father” (Season 3). The single disc will be available for a suggested retail price of $21.99.

One of the most popular series in the STAR TREK franchise, STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION®celebrates its 25th anniversary in 2012. It premiered in first-run syndication during the week of September 28, 1987 and ran through 1994.

Set in the 24th century on the Starship Enterprise, about 100 years after the original STAR TREK series took place, the series starred Patrick Stewart as Captain Jean-Luc Picard, Jonathan Frakes as Commander William T. Riker, LeVar Burton as Lt. Commander Geordi La Forge, Marina Sirtis as Counselor Deanna Troi, Brent Spiner as Lt. Commander Data, Michael Dorn as Lieutenant Worf, Gates McFadden as Dr. Beverly Crusher and Wil Wheaton as her son Wesley Crusher.

STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION® won numerous accolades, including 18 Emmy® awards, and was the first – and only – syndicated television show to be nominated for the Emmy® for Outstanding Drama Series for its seventh season. It was also ranked #46 on TV Guide’s 50 Greatest TV Shows of All Time list in 2002.


1. Dac - December 12, 2011

Erm, ok. This is nice I guess, still though, weren’t the first two trailers and news articles official enough?

2. VOODOO - December 12, 2011

It’s going to be too expensive to replace seven seasons of TNG that many of us already have on dvd…By the way the dvd’s look like old vhs tapes. They look horrible.

3. James T. West - December 12, 2011

Saeson 7 will be available fall 2019!!!!!!

4. Ensign RedShirt - December 12, 2011

I’m really looking forward to this-and I’m still amazed that it’s actually being done. It’s an incredible amount of work…makes the TOS remaster seem like a breeze.

5. Browncoat1984 - December 12, 2011

#1 agreed lol, this doesn’t really tell us anything we don’t already know? Kinda redundant.

Glad Amazon’s selling the sampler disk for $15. The original asking price Paramount suggested of what, $21.99 is a bit much for what amounts to four episodes we’ll likely all buy again later.

#2 Why not sell your TNG DVD’s and use that money to buy the blu rays? I have the complete series box set but as soon as all 7 are released I’ll sell it for a decent amount on Amazon. I agree with you on how bad the picture quality is on those discs though, its pathetic. Also, the packaging of the TNG/DS9/Voy sets leaves much to be desired.

I think if you own a hi-def system and are a Trekkie you’ll likely want to add this to your collection. Those who don’t care as much about picture quality probably won’t care about replacing their DVD’s but I was impressed with what I saw from the trailer so I think I will add this to my collection. Was also impressed with the work they did with TOS.

#3 Hope you’re being sarcastic and that this isn’t an actual release date, by then the next big hi-def format will probably be available or soon to be released and we’ll be expecting TOS to be remastered yet again for it!

6. erkle - December 12, 2011


Ever? the PR guy must be in high school.

7. Greg - December 12, 2011

Any word yet on Netflix or Amazon streaming or iTunes downloads? I don’t own a Blu-Ray player and don’t intended to buy one just for this.

8. New Horizon - December 12, 2011

Doug Drexler and Dan Currie have also joined the TNG remastering team. :)

9. Simon - December 12, 2011

Wish it was in Dolby TrueHD 7.1 instead of DTS-HD MA 7.1

10. rm10019 - December 12, 2011

Looking forward to this and thanks to the whole CBS TNG-R team!

11. rm10019 - December 12, 2011

7. No details yet, just splurge for a $89 Bluray at target or walmartI and enjoy.

12. naHQun - December 12, 2011

I want it on HD-DVD so I can play it on my HD-DVD player.

13. Paper Moon - December 12, 2011

#7 Seconded! Any info on TNGHD in digital media?

14. mike - December 12, 2011

They should had thought of selling it this month better sales

15. davidfuchs - December 12, 2011


“The iron cannot be hurried.”

I’m sure the marketers know what they sow.

16. JP - December 12, 2011

#12: I want it on Beta video cassette. And the soundtrack on 8-track. Can I borrow some coax cable? :P

17. Magic_Al - December 12, 2011

Press release fails to credit Denise Crosby, who was a full regular cast member for the first season. Diana Muldar isn’t mentioned either but she was never officially a regular and appeared in fewer episodes than Crosby.

18. Keeper of the Katra - December 12, 2011

Mike and Denise. You are the keepers, you are knights Templar, you are the guardians of our memories and of our fondness for a dream

Mr. Corvette

19. Jonboc - December 12, 2011

Too bad they can’t remaster the writing.

20. Maxwell Everett - December 12, 2011

This appears to be an an exact, word-for-word copy of the press release that appeared on September 28th:…print?id=29302

21. Greenberg - December 12, 2011

Fire up the bittorrent!

22. Greenberg - December 12, 2011

Since they’re going back to the original reels, does this mean we’ll finally get a Star Trek release with some good bloopers on it?

It vexes me to this day that the TOS bloopers don’t exist in any kind of quality. As though someone can’t just go digging and find the reels that the VHS was based on.

23. Tony Todd's Tears - December 12, 2011

I was hoping this would be under the tree. Now, I can not hold back my tears. My dishonor as a Klingon is complete.

24. Dr. Cheis - December 13, 2011

If they’re saying they’re releasing Season One next year, I think that means we can assume the syndicated episodes (if they have any) will be released in order and not randomly like TOS was.

25. BeatleJWOL - December 13, 2011


At this point, Dolby and DTS really come out about the same, especially with these lossless audio codecs; DTS has always been better and appears to be taking over somewhat.

26. Adam Clark - December 13, 2011

I suggest any Aussies planning on getting this, please do. Whether PHE Australia releases the whole show will depend on the sales

27. Christopher Roberts - December 13, 2011

I wonder if they can do seamless branching for both the two-parter and the feature length edition of “Encounter at Farpoint”. For syndication, they reordered a few scenes, did a pre-title teaser with “Laaaaassst time on Staaaaaaar Trek: The Next Generation”, onscreen credits for Part II and end titles that didn’t roll.

28. Christopher Roberts - December 13, 2011

Oh wait. No, it was more like “Laaaaaassst time on Encounter at Farpoint”. :-}

29. rm10019 - December 13, 2011

16 – I am hoping that RCA will unmaster it for SelectaVision vinyl video disc, circa 198. This is not fair!!! :P

30. rm10019 - December 13, 2011

sorry, should be 1981. My Commodore keyboard got stuck.

31. star trackie - December 13, 2011

Im sure the HD versions will crop up on netflix eventually, in which case, I may watch a select few. That’s the problem with TNG season sets, lots of boring episodes with just a few really good ones. I wont buy them all just to get to the good ones, blu rays are much too pricey.

32. rm10019 - December 13, 2011

Someone correct me, but i do not believe most streaming sites are streaming the true 1080p that a bluray puts out. My understanding is that the video is re-encoded to stream, thus defeating much of the pristine 1080p bluray quality.

Just buy a bluray player as an update to your DVD player! They are practically giving them away!

33. SciFiGuy - December 13, 2011

Netflix has limited HD content. I know this because I was looking into setting up my home theater for streaming video and decided not to due to the lack of HD. Might as well continue to rent DVDs.

On another note — I can’t wait to see Shades of Gray and Home Soil on Blu Ray!! I am sure they’ll look SPECTACULAR!!!

I can’t wait to hear “Ugly bags of mostly water” in 7.1 HD audio!!! WOW!!!


34. rm10019 - December 13, 2011

34. they can’t all be Darmok can they :)

35. Michael - December 13, 2011

I just want the remastered soundtracks released on reel to reels! My quad stereo system will rock! Can we get the shows on 16mm?

36. JP - December 13, 2011

#29: Not until I get my LaserDisc version!! With soundtrack files playable in Real Player. I should make sure my AOL account is paid up in anticipation :)

37. JP - December 13, 2011

p.s. Is Real Player compatible with Windows 3.1?

38. rm10019 - December 13, 2011

27 – I have to agree with this, I do hope Encounter at Farpoint is just presented as it was when it aired originally.

39. I Wish I Was Spock - December 13, 2011

The DVDs I got from an Asian box set of TNG have great picture quality. Not bluray quality, obviously, but definitely not VHS quality.

40. rm10019 - December 13, 2011

Those may have been encoded from a laserdisc source at a higher bit rate than the DVD’s here. Either legit or bootleg. An the quality varies so greatly from episode to episode on DVD also, it’s crazy.

41. rogue_alice - December 13, 2011

Inner Light was my favorite of the entire series.

42. David - December 13, 2011

I wonder if some new images will officially be released soon or already have been, or if there is a promotional already floating.
I found THAT image from “sins of the fathers” on the german amazon site:

As you can see on the live action AND on the fx scenes the aspect ratio is 16:9 with black bars on left and right side.
This has already been anounced, but if some still don’t believe it, that’s how it is gonna look.

43. Christopher Roberts - December 13, 2011

42. What you’re looking at there, is how TNG should be watched. A Blu ray device or TV set 16:9 FIXED. Pillarbox at either side is perfectly normal. In fact, you’re still seeing more than you did originally. There’s an area at each side that used to go off the sides of a square TV. That’s called overscan. I’ve seen people watch old shows oddly distorted, with various settings like Panoramic and forced to fill the whole of the widescreen frame. That’s up to them, but it’s often an attitude I don’t understand myself and they often don’t notice how misshapen the actors are onscreen.

44. David - December 13, 2011

Well, that’s how i expect to see it too.
I was just refering to the new picture which hasn’t been released elsewhere and wonder if we are going to see a few more soon.

45. Greg2600 - December 13, 2011

Which bank should I rob to buy these BluRay’s? TNG DVD sets were $129.99 each.

46. Phil - December 13, 2011

Beloved? I don’t think the airdate of Encounter at Farpoint envokes those kind of emotions in me……

47. theadagency - December 13, 2011

@3 Season 7 will be available fall 2019!!!!!!

At which point 1080p will look like SD as 4k and 8k become the norm. Then, a new set of remasters can begin production!

48. Allen Williams - December 13, 2011

@47 I believe they are doing at least 4k masters. I don’t think you can get much more than that out of 35mm anyway though.

49. Bob Tompkins - December 13, 2011

If they went back to the original negatives, why didn’t they just redo the FX a’la TOS and go 16×9 widescreen? It would almost be as cheap to redo the FX digitally rather than simply recomposite the originals and it would have been a major major sales tool…I have no interest at all in a 1.33×1 high def. since most DVD players upconvert to 1080 anyway…

50. BeatleJWOL - December 13, 2011


Bob, if you need your precious screen filled, chances are good that the versions made available to TV and possibly Netflix will be in 16×9.

Even at the original aspect ratio of 4×3, these Blu-rays will beat the crap out of your and my DVD sets, I guarantee it.

(hint: upconverting tends to work best when the material on the DVD was at some point HD and/or film at some point in the process; upconverting video-sourced (which would include TNG, as final editing was done on video) material just looks like, well, video-sourced material.)

51. Bob Tompkins - December 14, 2011

50- I just want to see something different and updated from what I know frame-by-frame. I saw the differences in the footage and it just wasn’t compelling enough for me to make the buy. If they don’t digitally render the footage at 16×9 Netflix can’t do anything about it.
It could be that there were inappropriate things going on in the shadows of those 2 vertical bars that makes the footage unusable.
It just burns me up that Universal network took the time to redo TJ Hooker in a 16X9 format for repeat broadcasts in that network, but CBS/Paramount refuses to do it. I think the final reason is so they don’t have to redo the fx from scratch which were probably natively 1.33-1

52. BeatleJWOL - December 14, 2011

As I understand it, last time the TOS effects WERE rendered in 16:9, but then cropped to 4:3 to match the film footage. If I recall correctly, there was a post or a mention on this very site about TOS airing in Japan(?) with the effects in their new 16:9 render and the film footage cropped to match.

I suspect you’re right about the filmed elements being 4:3 as well as the footage of the actors; but there is nothing “going on in the shadows of those 2 vertical bars”; there’s a bit of extra material at the edges that would have been covered by older TV sets, probably, but what you’ve seen is probably mostly what you’ll get.

Any ratio changes would involve reframing and cropping every single piece of footage to fit the new ratio, and quite frankly, they have more important things to do; but they might do it for TV/streaming only.

53. New Horizon - December 14, 2011

51. Bob Tompkins – December 14, 2011
I just want to see something different and updated from what I know frame-by-frame.

Then Petition CBS to make a brand new Star Trek show. The TOS remastered project had no choice but to replace all the effects with CGI since the original ‘non-composited’ effects no longer existed.

For me, the difference I’ve seen in both the restored live action and ship shots is absolutely gorgeous. The planets are being digitially replaced, as are the star backdrops….it’s just the filmed ship footage being reused and it looks beautiful.

Restoring a television series shouldn’t be about disposing of the work of the original artists, it should be about ‘RESTORING’ any and all footage that can potentially be restored. We didn’t have that priviledge with TOS, which is why I refused to buy it. Those who enjoyed the CGI makeover got their wishes last time, I guess this time people like me will be getting ours.

54. Mark Lynch - December 14, 2011

This is available on for just £6.99 and free delivery… Bargain!
Pre-ordered and counting down to the 30th of January 2012 for some TNG high definition fun…

How long do you think it will be until Paramount/CBS get around to a 3D conversion of TOS and TNG?

55. falkan - December 14, 2011

They can’t be serious about reusing every one the old visual effects.

Some of the planets seen in the first two seasons look like blobs of green. Please tell me they’ll do a tiny bit of CG to make the planets more believable!

56. rm10019 - December 14, 2011

55 – The Planets were SD cgi and yes, just like the Q’onos in the sample clip, the planets will be recreated in HD.

Don’t confuse the types of visual effects used. The ship models were all shot on 35mm and will be in HD. The phasers, fields and planets rendered in SD cgi will all be replaced.

57. Daniel Shock - December 14, 2011

53 – but the TOS blu-rays do include the original special effects if you want to watch them that way…

58. Simon - December 14, 2011

@#25 – DTS is most certainly not better. It is inefficient. It requires more bitrate, more CPU, and has less features like multi-mix encoding (both 5.1 and 7.1 mix in one stream) and no dynamic range options. Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD MA are lossless, so the output is equal, but as you can see the feature set is not. As far as the lossy versions go tests have shown that Dolby & DTS have equal performance at 640kbps for Dolby, 1536kbps for DTS: more than double the data required for transparency.

Louder does not equal better.

59. Ensign RedShirt - December 14, 2011

Why would anyone want to see something in 16×9 that wasn’t shot that way to begin with? It’d look awful.

Trek(and most other shows of the pre-HD era) were shot and framed for a 4×3 set. Making it 16×9 doesn’t make it better. All it does is distort the image and mess up the original framing.

60. BeatleJWOL - December 14, 2011


Did not know that about some of the features; will have to research more.

As far as lossy, though, I’ve always preferred more bitrate to less; the more information preserved from the original source, the better.

61. spooky - December 14, 2011

People are still bitching about widescreen… holy krap get over it, It was a TV show not phucking Gone With the Wind. In other news, I am happy about TNG coming to blu-ray. YAY! I hope it does come with impressive array of extras to justify the double dip. :(

62. rm10019 - December 15, 2011

61 – I agree. Maybe Doug and the guys can work up a cool interactive Ent-D render, like they did for Trek 09.

63. utterlee - December 15, 2011

56 – “The Planets were SD cgi ”

I don’t think any of the early effects in TNG were CGI in the way we understand it now. I thought the planets were slides projected onto a white sphere, and various force-field and energy effects used a variety of “real world” materials and objects as starting points.

64. Simon - December 15, 2011

@#60 – Transparency to the original is determined by codec efficiency. You can see the same thing in the world of digital video: MPEG2 requires a lot more bitrate (data) than MPEG4 AVC due to the fact that MPEG4 is much more efficient. If Dolby can achieve transparency at 640kbps, throwing more data at it won’t improve the sound. DTS needs 1536kbps to achieve the same performance, and reducing a DTS encode to 640kbps seriously degrades its performance. In fact the 768kbps rate used by DTS on DVD has degraded frequency response starting at 15kHz (Dolby is flat to 20kHz even at 384kbps). Most adults don’t notice because they lose high frequency hearing ability as they age (combined other factors of course).

65. New Horizon - December 15, 2011

57. Daniel Shock

Regarding the TOS blue rays containing the original effects.

I know, but what’s being done on TNG is a completely different process with a completely different end results.

It seems there is a difference in concept that people aren’t fully understanding. :)

All that remains of the TOS ship effects are what we see in the episodes…the completed effects…all layers sandwiched together in the final shot. Beyond rescanning them and cleaning up the scratches…there isn’t much that could be done with them.

For TNG, ALL of the original filmed layers for the ship visuals exist in their original form. All of these layers are being rescanned, tweaked with modern equipment and then re-assembled with new star fields and new high quality planets. See the difference?

People are complaining about not wanting to see what they saw in the original airings, but they’re not going to see that at all. The original effects elements are going to come out looking one hell of a lot nicer after being re-assembled with modern tech.

66. Commodore Adams - December 15, 2011

Meh, some people complain about it being too expensive but I think its well worth the money. I bought the TOS seasons as they came out. Im very cautious about what my disposable income goes to, save a bit every day, lets me splurge on things like this.

67. Bob Tompkins - December 16, 2011

58- Just sayin’ it probably was shot 16×9. TJ Hooker was shot 16×9 back in the mid 1980s. I suspect everything was originally 16×9, there has never been one type camera for television and one for movies. That said, the original negatives should be 16×9, why not utilize that, considering the changes in the physical structure of televisions?

68. New Horizon - December 16, 2011

67. Bob Tompkins – December 16, 2011

TNG wasn’t shot 16×9, it was shot and framed at 4×3.

When the studio decided to increase a show like Buffy the Vampire Slayer to 16×9, this is what happened in a lot of scenes.

Crew or equipment that had been sitting just outside of the 4×3 framing could now be seen. Sure, you could go through each episode and brush out all of that stuff….but then I guess we could look forward to paying $500 a season. lol

So, while the visual information probably does exist outside of the 4:3 framing…it’s probably not usable ‘as is’ in a majority of cases, either due to equipment or edges of sets being visible. It would take a pretty large budget to do 16×9 ‘the right way’.

I am personally along side TNG vet Doug Drexler who said they will be restoring TNG with curatorial eyes only.

69. New Horizon - December 16, 2011

Also, here is an image of a piece of original TNG film stock. The yellow represents what they would have to do to achieve widescreen.×9.jpg

Green is the TV transmitted area.

70. rm10019 - December 16, 2011

63 – the sphere that is the planet was a cgi sphere, what they ‘wrapped around it’ may have been a practical effect, but they still have to be redone, as they were rendered on SD decks.

There are quite a few SD ‘video’ effects in TNG, that need to be redone in HD for this set. This has all been covered before.

71. EFFeX - December 16, 2011

Really can not wait for this. I’ve been wanting this for a long time now.

72. JP - December 18, 2011

Another problem with 16:9 of a show framed at 4:3 is that the blocking of the actors to accomodate 4:3 means that in 16:9 all of the actors are “bunched up” in the middle of the screen. You’re not really getting anything added except for some additional scenery (or occassionaly crew equipment). It just ends up looking weird.

73. New Horizon - December 18, 2011

@ 72-

Not even bunched in the middle, bunched over to the right side of the screen. TNG was filmed with an academy aperature which deviates to the right….as does the framing for the televised transmitted area. See this screen shot.×9.jpg

74. RickinRI - December 21, 2011

I hope DS9 is next!


The authoring of the DS9 DVD sets was not well done, IMHO.
Alot of scenes do not hold up on todays wide screen TV’s.


Thanks Mike and Denise, you’re tireless efforts are

75. Christopher Roberts - December 22, 2011

Star Trek: Enterprise would be nice to own next. For those of us in the world where the show isn’t available to see in its native HD… and download amount restrictions mean it would be too expensive anyhow. is represented by Gorilla Nation. Please contact Gorilla Nation for ad rates, packages and general advertising information.