hah. It's not the equipment that matters, but the fact that Fortune Star remixes are completely unlistenable. The original mono tracks sound approximately 17 437 times better.
Well, in theory at least. In practive, Fortune Star's mono tracks tend to be unremastered, out of sync mess. That's why every human being on the planet hates them.
Oh, I'm sorry, getting too personal again. But hey, I even held a presentation in school about why Fortune Star sucks. And wrote a 15 page essay.
ok, lets get back to ABT. Part 1: the IVL mono - against all expectations and probabilities - is actually fine. It's in sync and sounds good. But the transfer is fucked. There's frames missing in the middle of scenes. You'd think it would result to a jump cut, but no. In their infinitive wisdom Fortune Star decided to replicate the last existing frame and place it in the lace of the missing frames, so the image actually freezes for a moment. This happens throughout the film, even during some action scenes.
Needless to say I threw my dvd set through the window and hit a mail man. Nobody's happy.
Not that it matters anymore to anyone, the IVL set is long out of print. Joy Sales has been planning to re-release it, with the frame problem corrected according to popular belief. But that's "planning to". Since 2006. They've hardly released any remastered dvds during the last 12 months.
The best releases for parts 1 and 2, as far as I know, are the Anchor Bay dvds. They're not pristine, but appart from missing audio in the beginning of part 1, they're somewhat fine.
UK Optimum has Forrest Gump score. The Scandinavian release I think is the same although I'm not 100% sure. KR is IVL port, without mono. French HK Video is probably fine, but of course without subs. Their transfers usually aren't that great either.
Btw, dvd compare is an extremely bad reference. They only compare specs, they've never seen a single one of the actual dvds. If they see "anamorphic widescreen" and "DTS" they will declare it winner... without knowing the audio goes mute for 30 minutes in middle of the film and the image is black and white instead of intended colour because of an authoring error...