WHO AM I?
A Japanese’ s anime (and manga) fan from Malaysia. I can be contacted via this contact form. General inquiries about this blog can also be submitted via the comment section below.
The service is free of charge, and is here for long-term usage (just like what I have done for miyabiaizawa.com – which has been live for 5 years now). The e-mail service is also separate from this website, which means if this blog goes down for technical reasons, your e-mail is still going to be available (there’s nothing I can say though if Hotmail goes down – it did occasionally). The imouto.my domain is powered by the enterprise-grade DNS service provided by DNS Made Easy, so your e-mail will always be sent and received even if this site is offline for whatever reasons my web hosting provider has.
Register for a @imouto.my Hotmail account here.
You can access your e-mail account via any modern web browsers (IE, Firefox and Chrome are recommended), via any e-mail applications that supports POP feature (settings here), or via any mobile phones that support Exchange ActiveSync (settings here).
WHAT IS THIS BLOG FOR?
The purpose of this blog is to become an outlet where I can write short reviews of anime I have watched. The first iteration of this blog was hosted at Windows Live Spaces (URL: http://ranpha-chan.spaces.live.com), then a couple of years later, I moved the blog manually to a wordpress.com blog (URL: http://ranpha.wordpress.com). Seeing how limited a wordpress.com blog can be, I then moved the blog to a self-hosted wordpress blog installation (URL: http://nunnally.ahmygoddess.net). Then I changed the URL again (http://imouto.my) and start using the current theme.
The reviews in this blog has been categorized in two: anime reviews and anime reviews – reposted. The latter reflects the anime reviews that I have posted in my Windows Live Spaces days, and tend to be very short indeed. The former has a few more lines of texts, but usually more coherent than the entries in the latter category. Many entries in the latter categories are very bad indeed, and I still facepalmed myself when I read them.
All entries are composed with Windows Live Writer.
This blog is hosted on a VPS + off-site MySQL server at buyvm. Software setup: CentOS 5.5 + Apache 2.2 + MySQL 5.1 + PHP 5.2 with php-apc module. This wordpress blog is also accessible via IPv6 connection.
HOW THE SCORING FOR EACH REVIEW ARE DETERMINED
Each review in this blog nowadays are split into several sections:-
- Character Design.
- Voice Acting.
Most of the time, in a typical situation, the scoring I will give to an anime I reviewed will depend on how the said anime performed in the Story section. I usually look at three criterias within this Story section: the quality of the storyline and/or plots, presentation of the anime (pacing, flow of the story etc.) and character strength and/or development. This is why the story section of any given review is usually the longest and biggest part of my reviews.
The other 4 sections (character design, voice acting, music and animation/direction) usually act as tie-breakers. For example, if two any given anime titles scored 10 out of 10 and with an ‘Anime of the Year’ title on the line, the title that wins the majority of the tie-breakers will win the award. But sometimes, an anime may perform exceptionally well (or bad) in any of the tie-breakers’ section, and I will make an exception appropriately.
The scoring is based on a 10-point scale, and each anime will start at 5. Depending on how good (or bad) an anime perform at the Story section, I will add (majority of the time) or subtract for this base score, which will be reflected in the Conclusion section (sometimes I do this earlier though). My reflection of any given anime can be summarized below:-
- 8 points and above: Excellent.
- 5 – 7 points: Good. Or at least decent.
- 4 and lower: Uhm.. avoid like a plague?
Handicaps are given for anime titles that falls under romance and sport genres, because I hold titles on these genres on a higher standard than titles in other genres. Each handicap costs an anime two points, therefore the anime will start at 3 points instead of the usual 5. The handicaps stacks too, therefore for an anime with heavy elements of both genres (such as Cross Game), they will start at 1 (Cross Game has done very well indeed).
HOW I WATCHED THEM
I usually do my anime watching gigs using MPC-HC. For H.264 videos, I use CoreAVC 2 CUDA codec, while for DivX and Xvid videos, I use DivX 8. I then chained these decoders to ffdshow raw video filter (usually installed with low merit therefore I need to explicitly make MPC-HC load it). The ffdshow raw video filter will then choose from two custom-made presets, each with different Avisynth debanding scripts. For 720p videos and lower, I will use gradfun2DBmod, while gradfun2DB will be used on FullHD 1080p videos. Video renderer is madVR (chroma and luma upscaling done with lanczos 3-tap, luma downscaling with bicubic sharpness 50). ffdshow subtitle engine is used, and so are Reclock to speed up 23.976Hz videos to 25Hz (matching my 50Hz display).
For audio, decoding will be done via ffdshow audio decoder for these formats: MP3 (libmad), AC3 (liba52), DTS and the core of DTS-HD MA (libdts), TrueHD (libavcodec) and Vorbis (Tremor). For FLAC audio I use madflac while CoreAAC 2.0 is used for AAC tracks. Then I chained the audio decoder used to AC3Filter so that I can upmix stereo sound to my 5.1 speaker setup. I also use AC3Filter to manually manipulate the equalizer for the center channel.
For fool-proof tearing prevention, I make a profile in nVidia Control Panel just for MPC-HC executable and ensure that v-sync is turned on in all cases.
More information:- Watching H.264 videos using CUDA & ffdshow post-processing and high-resolution subtitles.
Further reading: Watching H.264 videos using DXVA.
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