Dragon Ball & Dragon Ball Z (partially lost original broadcast audio of anime series; 1986-1996)


(Redirected from Dragon Ball & Dragon Ball Z (partially lost original broadcast audio; 1986-1996))

Dragon Ball & Dragon Ball Z (original broadcast audio)
Title Card for Dragon Ball
Title Card for Dragon Ball
Status Dragon Ball: Partially Lost

Dragon Ball Z: Found

Dragon Ball (ドラゴンボール, "Doragon Boru") is a manga that ran from 1984 to 1995. Composed of 519 chapters in 41 volumes, the manga chronicled the adventures of the monkey-tailed boy Son Goku as he searched the world for seven mystical objects known as "Dragon Balls", which would summon a dragon when brought together to grant a single wish. The manga's popularity helped codify many tropes of the newly-emerged fighting genre, and would quickly gain two anime adaptations by Toei Animation: Dragon Ball (which covered the first 194 chapters of the manga and ran from 1986 to 1989) and Dragon Ball Z (which covered the remaining 325 chapters and ran from 1989 to 1996). While the shows proved to be immensely popular with audiences, Toei ran into considerable difficulties when it came to releasing them on home video: they had already junked the audio master tapes for the entire series.

Photograph of a Dragon Ball Z film reel; the optical audio is the area surrounded by the red rectangle.

After the initial broadcast of each episode, Toei would wipe its audio master. This procedure was considered standard for the first two decades of the TV anime industry's life, as it was easier to broadcast and store optical audio, which is stored directly on the film reel rather than occupying a separate unit. However, production studios eventually started to retain their master tapes in the late 1970's, when TV stations began broadcasting shows with the master audio. The rise of home media in the 1980's further compounded this, motivating more and more studios to hold on to their masters to ensure the highest quality releases for consumers. Toei, however, was very skeptical about home media, viewing the sale of TV shows to children in a negative light. Adding onto the fact that 16mm film reels and magnetic audiotape reels occupied the same amount of storage space, Toei decided to continue wiping master tapes under the impression that they would be useless and voluminous if they were simply left in storage untouched. However, this attitude changed around the 2000's, when Dragon Ball Z experienced a boom in popularity in the United States, and Toei finally decided to unearth their reels for Dragon Ball and Dragon Ball Z for DVD releases in Japan. Because Toei no longer possessed the audio they needed, however, all home media releases featuring the shows' Japanese audio utilized the optical audio taken from their film reels, which had undergone noticeable deterioration over the years. As a result, the optical audio is significantly lower in quality than before, featuring higher amounts of white noise & tin and sounding more muted than the master tapes.

Because anime studios usually didn't provide distribution copies of their audio masters for foreign regions at the time (as dubbing was the most popular choice back then), Toei has never made any efforts to recover the lost audiotapes. However, numerous individuals from the Kanto region were able to record each episode of Dragon Ball and Dragon Ball Z on their VCRs and upload the audio of each recording online decades later. Because television broadcasts in Kanto were received directly from Tokyo Tower rather than NTT (which cut out high tones to block white noise), their audio was virtually untouched from the original masters, allowing them to be significantly clearer than the audio used for all other broadcasts & releases. Since this audio was taken directly from the original broadcast of the anime, it has appropriately been dubbed the "original broadcast audio."

Initially, it was not known how much of the master audio survived from this method, as all available recordings of it up until mid-2017 only utilized segments of each episode, and the fact that Dragon Ball and Dragon Ball Z ran for a combined total of 444 episodes (approximately 222 hours of runtime) made a full recovery seem impossible. However, on 21 June 2017, these concerns were at least partly alleviated when a user on nyaa.si named sarachikorita uploaded a torrent of the entire original broadcast audio for Dragon Ball Z after spending 6 years searching for it, making it once again available to the general public. The full original broadcast audio for Dragon Ball, meanwhile, has yet to be recovered in its entirety, partially due to the lower popularity of the show compared to Z.

Video

The iconic scene of Son Goku's first ascension to a Super Saiyan, utilizing the original broadcast audio; this is just one of many OBA clips that exist online.


External Links

  • [1] The upload containing the original broadcast audio track for Dragon Ball Z

Comments


avatar

Anonymous user #1

16 months ago
Score 2++
Someone better networked into all this than me needs to find all available recordings of these online and send them to Toei or Funimation for future releases. I'm sure they'd appreciate it.
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Anonymous user #11

12 months ago
Score 0++
some has toei and funimation won't except them :(
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Anonymous user #14

1 months ago
Score 0++
All but two episodes of Z are, I believe, intact. (I have the audio in question. I'm given to understand someone else who also got the audio provided it to Funimation, but that's all I know.)
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Anonymous user #2

15 months ago
Score 0++
Where can I find the original audio mentioned in this article?
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Game4brains

15 months ago
Score 0++
I just included one video in the article, and you can find more on YouTube by searching up "dragon ball z original broadcast audio" [sic].
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Game4brains

15 months ago
Score 0++
Just search up "dragon ball z original broadcast audio" on YouTube.
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Anonymous user #3

14 months ago
Score 1++
I'm SO confused right now! So while Toei was making the series, they ran into some problems with the master audio tapes. Did Toei basically throw the tapes in the trash? Did the voice actors had to re-record their lines again? My brain really hurts at this point...
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Anonymous user #4

14 months ago
Score 0++

Did you actually read the article?

"Adding onto the fact that 16mm film reels and magnetic audiotape reels occupied the same amount of storage space, Toei decided to continue wiping master tapes under the impression that they would be useless and voluminous if they were simply left in storage untouched."

The audio masters were recorded over.
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Anonymous user #3

14 months ago
Score 0++
For the first part, both this and the Kanzenshuu post. Anyway, I think I got it down. Thanks.
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Anonymous user #4

14 months ago
Score 0++
Bottom line: The original audio masters were recorded over and are long gone. The audio recordings used on home video releases, etc. are inferior copies derived from those masters. No one re-recorded anything, the audio itself is not lost, just the highest quality versions of the audio.
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Anonymous user #5

14 months ago
Score 0++

there will no release with broadcast audio because toei and funi don't care about master quality as long as they make money with what they have.

And the couple of person who have all the complete series audio broadcast on their computer will not share them with other
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Anonymous user #6

14 months ago
Score 0++
anon 5. are you stupid? they don't even have the original audio on tape
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Anonymous user #7

13 months ago
Score 1++
Anon 6 what the hell are you talking about? Toei nor Funimation have the original broadcasts but there are a few people online who do. One Kanzenshuu user named kei17 literally has the orignal broadcast audio for every Dragon Ball series(DB/Z/GT). Anon 5 was referring to how he has release very little of it, and refuses to release more. He wants to try and see if they can be released officially but Toei has ignored him and he's been talking with Funimation for years. At this point we can only hope...
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Anonymous user #6

13 months ago
Score -1++
human intelligence is getting lower by the fucking second
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Anonymous user #15

1 months ago
Score 0++
Why go to Funimation they wouldn't care they'd still use the same shitty audio they use with the orange bricks because they are not re-releasing the Dragon boxes over in the U.s. again so all they'd do is what they do with the aspect ratio not change it .
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Anonymous user #8

13 months ago
Score 1++
Anon 6 what are you even trying to say? If you're going to say something maybe contribute to the conversation instead of making baseless insults.
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Anonymous user #9

12 months ago
Score 0++
What's the diff between partially lost and partially found? Is it that in partially lost, it used to survive but now some of it is missing, and found is the other way around?
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SenaUW

12 months ago
Score 1++

51% or more lost = partially found

51% or more found = partially lost
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Anonymous user #9

12 months ago
Score 0++
Doesn't exactly help that the page says "partially lost" while at the same time being in the "partially found" category page.
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Anonymous user #10

12 months ago
Score 1++
Technically it isn't lost at all. We know that it is all out there. It's just that the people who have it refuse to share it.
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Anonymous user #11

12 months ago
Score 1++
i don't know why they won't share it's makes me so sad. it's like toei not releasing dragon ball/z dragon ball z's the two specials the 13 movies in 4x3 on blu ray properly done of course
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Anonymous user #12

11 months ago
Score 0++
Because this Kei17 is just trying to earn money from his recorded collection.
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Anonymous user #13

6 months ago
Score 0++
Dragonball is only one series. What others are missing their master audio? Every series? That's a lot to find!
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Game4brains

6 months ago
Score 0++

Knowing how Toei's earliest documented home media releases in Japan were during the anime boom in the 2000's, it can be assumed that the master audio for every one of their shows before then is missing. This article just covers the lost audio for Dragon Ball & DBZ because those cases are the most prolific and thus have the widest amount of verifiable information related to them. Think of it as why Doctor Who and Dad's Army have their lost episodes documented here, but not any of the BBC's other pre-1978 programs.

On a slightly related note, I haven't heard any credible info about the fate of GT's audio (hence why it's not discussed in the article), but I'm under the assumption that it met the same fate.
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Supersonic25730

5 months ago
Score 0++
This kinda shit pisses me off to no end. Companies intentionally throwing away original versions of their own creations is the stupidest fucking shit. Like SEGA deleted ALL OF THE SOURCE CODE for Space Channel 5 and it's sequel, making a remaster impossible.
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CCharmanderK

1 months ago
Score 1++

The ENTIRETY of Dragon Ball Z's original broadcast audio has been FOUND!!

https://nyaa.si/view/932632
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Game4brains

1 months ago
Score 1++

That's pretty amazing; the only caveat is that the audio for the original Dragon Ball has yet to be fully recovered.

Maybe someday it'll happen...
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