Let's Confuse Customers Further With Another High-Def DVD Format

from the format-wars dept

Because the next-generation high-definition DVD format battle wasn't annoying enough, Warner Brothers has been working on a disc that contains films in both the Blu-ray and HD-DVD formats, and will unveil the final product at CES next week. Dubbed a "Total HD" disc, the push is an effort to ease consumer fears that picking a side will mean they're stuck with a dead technology, a la Betamax. "The next best thing is to recognize that there will be two formats and to make that not a negative for the consumer," insists a Warner Brothers executive. First, it's unlikely that Sony Pictures Entertainment would be willing to put their Blu-ray formatted films on the same disc with a competing format, since that would be an admission that sharing the market is acceptable. That would mean retailers would still need to carry and display four formats (including standard definition DVDs) in order to offer all titles. That's a painfully inefficient way to settle the format war, particularly when dual-format players are already trying to bridge the divide -- and it comes at the cost of confusing customers further by offering yet another format. The more confused the customer, the more likely they are to turn to piracy as a simpler, cheaper and more efficient alternative, no matter what distribution flavor you're pushing.


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  1.  
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    Solo, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 3:20pm

    Err... maybe you can make the drive dual mode maybe? Whatever format it is, your dvd hd player will play it, so you don't have to worry.

    Kind of like my DVD writer in my PC writes CDs, DVD, DVD RW, all with a dash or a plus and it does not care.

    This is the proper way to settle the dispute.

    I am not fan of the whole HD is coming you have to purchase a new one of everything in the first place, but you would think the format battle would be the most irrelevant one for the consumers (they both hold HD content, no clear winner)

     

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    Scate, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 3:32pm

    More patent trust royaltees!

    The Warner Brothers Total HD format is more than just the reeses peanut butter cup (tm) of HD discs, by using the new format content providers will have to pay royalties to both sets of patent holders and trademark owners, as will hardware makers, thus insuring that the new format will cost even more!

    Yup, ironically Warner has created a new Franken-product that is, perhaps, far less useful than just making dual format players that make the format war irrelevant.

     

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  3.  
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    Mark Seecof, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 3:52pm

    We need non-writeable non-PC-compatible HD discs

    I think all the vendors involved in this are crazy. Very few movie buyers care about watching those movies on general-purpose computers. People just want affordable players and low-priced movies. If movie prices are low enough, people will buy movies even with no way to make backups. OTOH, nearly all studios' demands for "DRM" stem from fear that people will make copies using computer drives (DRM has no effect on wholesale copying).

    The obvious solution is for some hardware vendor to supply a (patented) high-def disc format only for use in standalone players. This format would not need to support "burning" or "rewriting" at all--only factory "pressing" (by whatever means). The players could output via HDMI or whatever, but most of the DRM crap on the disc could be omitted (of course, those players must not be allowed to read any readily-writeable (computer) disc format with more capacity than 2-layer DVD).

    The hardware vendor should then sell the players cheaply (say, $100 each), and charge a royalty on the discs (say, 50cts) to make up the difference. The studios could then sell movies cheaply with no fear of small-scale duplication.

    End-users would buy players and discs. If they lost one or two discs they would buy them again. If they lost a bunch, they would still buy them again but send the bill to their homeowner's insurance. Player vendors would sell players. Movie vendors would sell discs. Everyone would be happy.

    Assuming people want writeable optical discs for computer use, they should get them--but using a format incompatible with the cheap-movie players.

     

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    PhysicsGuy, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 4:03pm

    frankly, i find nothing wrong with standard dvd resolution. sure, it's not the highest resolution you can get. however, with bicubic interpolation and this nifty little aspect to human sight where natural antialiasing occurs over distance, unless you're watching your tv from less than a metre away, you're not really going to notice the pixelization... of course there are always those anal people who think they can notice a difference simply because of the fact they know there is pixelization occuring therefore they think they see it... but oh well... more money spent on their behalf... their loss, not mine :)

     

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    PhysicsGuy, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 4:05pm

    Re: We need non-writeable non-PC-compatible HD dis

    there's so many things wrong with your idea that i don't know where to begin... and frankly, i won't... you need to leave the fantasy world you live in, full of fairies, elves, unicorns and eskimos.

     

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    PhysicsGuy, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 4:33pm

    Re: Re: We need non-writeable non-PC-compatible HD

    oh, and before i come off sounding like a jackass (as i do in so many of my posts), you idea has merit... it's just not a tangible concept in this reality we've created... [shrugs]

     

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    SimplyGimp, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 5:15pm

    Confuse?

    I'm sorry, but if the consumer is so confused over one more format, they need to move back to the caves to rediscover fire.

    Christ, it's not like this stuff is hard. Sorry, but if you can't research something you're interested in without becomming completely confused over "Oh lord, what should I get???", you shouldn't be buying anything except for maybe some PC tutoring so you can be less useless.

     

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    KC, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 5:28pm

    5 versions

    "That would mean retailers would still need to carry and display four formats (including standard definition DVDs) in order to offer all titles."

    Actually, there's

    1. HD-DVD
    2. Blu-Ray
    3. Total DVD
    4. SD - Widescreen
    5. SD - Fullscreen

    Then there's the director's cut, the un-cut cut, the PG-cut, the ***-cut... and finally, the bootleg version.

     

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    Ryan, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 5:31pm

    Re:

    "unless you're watching your tv from less than a metre away, you're not really going to notice the pixelization..."

    Have you actually watched an HD-DVD and a standard DVD of the same movie on the same TV?? If you have and you still don't notice the difference you may need to get your eyesight checked out. I wouldn't say it's as great a difference as VHS and DVD, but it's still much better than your standard or even up-converting dvd player.

    Additionally, the new HD optical formats provide other things...like Dolby TrueHD uncompressed 7 channel audio. Granted, compatible receivers aren't commonplace right now but neither were 5.1 receivers when DVD first hit the market. Also, and this was extremely noticeable to me, the menu system and ability to access special features is SOOO much better on the new formats. Just as DVD wasn't a straight visual upgrade, the new HD formats are trying to improve the overall movie watching experience.

    As far as Warner's new disc is concerned...I think they're making a huge mistake. The only way a dual-format disc would work is if all the studios did it. Also, current dual format discs (HD-DVD/SD-DVD) cost $30+ which means a dual HD format would probably creep into the $40...and who is going to pay that price for a disc they'll only use in one of the two players?

    The real problem here is Sony, they're leveraging their movie collection to promote their technology, knowing that if blu-ray loses the format war it will seriously cripple their golden goose, the PS3...which personally sounds like an anti-trust violation waiting to happen.

    Even IF blu-ray has technological advantages over HD-DVD, I'm so sick of Sony and their proprietary bull$hit. ..they should stick to what they're good at...sweet LCD displays and professional audio/video equipment.

     

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    PhysicsGuy, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 5:33pm

    Re: Confuse?

    and there in lies the problem. your average home viewer ISN'T interesting in the technology, they're simply interested in watching movies. they're impressed with watching high def movies. they still could care less about the technical aspects of it. considering that the majority of people still have 4:3 aspect tvs the average home viewer isn't concerned about super high def formats, yet the rate of progression of technology is forcing it upon them. therefore this causes confusion. sorry you're some moronic jackass who probably drools over the specs on hd-dvd or blu-ray (?!?! why, i don't know... there are far more interesting things than this trite bs) but the majority of home viewers aren't interested enough in high def to care about researching these things to the nth level of detail.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 5:37pm

    Re:

    You apparently do not have a TV larger than 42 inches...

     

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    Bumbling old fool, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 5:38pm

    Re: Confuse?

    Your tiny view of the world is so underwhelming that it's obvious you need to get out in the world and discover real life before you should ever think of participating in public discussion again.

    You are the one that needs to get out of the cave. Or out from living under a rock. Consumers are stick and tired of buying stuff they cant use a few months/years later. This format war is going to have a loser, and they dont want it to be them.

     

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    PhysicsGuy, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 5:41pm

    Re: Re: Ryan

    yes, i've tested both new formats. again, i reiterate, from the average distance of a viewer's couch you CANNOT physically notice the difference. of course the new formats have better quality, hence the HIGH DEFINITION aspect. however, your eyes have built in "anti-aliasing". if you think you can notice the difference, i recommend either removing your nose from the screen or giving yourself a nice smack across the face for being so easily influenced into false perceptions.

    i agree that the audio is much better, but, from my experience, most people don't have the audio perception necessary to appreciate such a thing. maybe being partially tone deaf (which, i believe, the majority of people are... hence most musical tastes being influenced solely by rhythm) is different from being able to detect audio compression... but higher def audio most likely falls into the same category with high def video... it's a false perception... simply knowing the fact that it is better quality influences your experience.

     

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    PhysicsGuy, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 5:44pm

    Re: Re:

    You apparently do not have a TV larger than 42 inches...

    regardless of the television size, natural anti-aliasing occurs over distance. it's an inarguable (yes, i understand the problem with using that word) facty that this happens. if you notice too much pixelization, here's a suggestion, move back half a metre... notice the difference? AMAZING!

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 5:53pm

    Re: Re: Confuse?

    "sorry you're some moronic jackass"

    Sorry, I was responding to your comment that you couldn't notice the difference in picture quality between the two mediums...I don't believe I was incorrect in anything I said...and certainly not 'moronic'. I personally care about the quality of entertainment because I work in the television industry (as an engineer, nothing on-air).

    As far as your average home viewer not being interested in the technology...I'd say that's flat incorrect. I live in the US and HDTV is a booming business...the main problem with the industry is the severe lack of content. One solution to this are these new formats.

    Also, this article is clearly not directed at people who still own SD 4:3 televisions as there would clearly be NO benefit in one of these people owning a next-gen DVD player. And to those people who DO own the sets that can take advantage of the new technology ARE researching these things to the nth level of detail...which is the reason that neither HD-DVD or Blu-Ray is selling very well. Consumers are doing all the research and deciding to wait until these stupid companies can agree on something.

    Please, don't call me a moronic jackass for being interested in technology...it doesn't make any sense...kind of like your subject line.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 5:56pm

    Re: Re: Re: Confuse?

    My mistake, PhysicsGuy, you apparently weren't calling me a moronic jackass...but still, I think you're taking things a little too seriously.

    And my comment about the subject line was to whoever titled their post "confuse?"

     

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    Count Porkula, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 6:13pm

    This isn't the first nor will it be the last moronic post by PhysicsGuy. Best thing is to just ignore his posts and extract the good information that is available in others' posts.

    I guess PhysicsGuy is trying to impress people b/c he might know a bit about physics and thinks we should all bow down to him for this. BFD. Not impressed in the least. (watch for his immediate response demanding he wasn't trying to impress anyone LOL)

     

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  18.  
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    Ryan, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 6:15pm

    Re: Re: Re: Ryan

    I'll take your word that humans have built in 'anti-aliasing'...but apparently it's not perfect, because computer graphics cards are all about better and better anti aliasing...so what's the point if our eyes do it for us?

    Our eyes can do a lot of things...like, say, fool our brains into thinking a series of still pictures one after another is actually something in motion. Also, as bad as the 'i guess you don't have a tv bigger than 42"' quote sounds, it is actually a good point. You might not notice a higher resolution or the difference between interlaced and progressive scan if you're not watching it on a larger screen. Case-in-point, 1080p is overall viewed as a pointless technology unless it's on a screen over 60"...yet companies still push it and hype it like it's the next coming. I can't speak for sets less than 42" but I know I've watched DVDs and HD-DVDs on 42" and 50" monitors and the difference is quite obvious.

    As far as you not being able to detect audio compression (or video compression, apparently)...I think it has to do with your 'test' setup. Try listening to an mp3 vs. a CD on your Aiwa stereo...you probably won't hear a difference. Do the same test on a properly calibrated audiophile grade setup and you'll probably have different results. Likewise, watching a DVD and an HD-DVD on a 20" CRT will yield a much different result than the same test on a 50" Plasma.

    My final thought, is why are you even wasting your time discussing this as you clearly have no interest in the forward progression of video technology?

     

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  19.  
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    Liam Parry, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 6:27pm

    The difference with HD

    Aimed at PHYSICSGUY

    I've always been a sceptic with regard to HD. I did some simple math to work out what the eye can resolve at comfortable viewing distances -simple optics that PHYSICSGUY should definately be familiar with (I hold a masters in physics myself, reading for a pHD). My calculations told me that, yes, you should be able to see it -but not by much. We're talking perhaps three lines of first year undergrad maths here.

    I'm explaining this for background; I wasn't looking to spot a difference, in a sense I was expecting to observe no improvement whatsoever with HD. I found it a great surprise that when visiting my parents over the xmas period, their new (and very cheap) 32" LCD really DOES expose the benefits of improved resolutions, and at reasonable distances too.

    As for 'natural anti-aliasing'... come on, please read up on your subject matter! 'Anti-aliasing' has no real relevance in the context of this discussion. Nyquist would spin... But since we're thinking along these trains of thought, imagine for a moment that a very slightly tilted line is rendered in a low resolution, producing a 'step'. This will be clearly visable, even at great distance. Render the same line in a higher resolution, and the same line will also include steps -but more of them, and of a much smaller magnitude. The effect it less perceptible.

    My suggestion is that the benefits of HD lie not with the angular seperation of the individual points that may be rendered, but rather with the artifacts that result because of these limitations.

    As for your suggestion that the average user isn't impressed by this technology. This is one point I would be inclined to agree with you. But I would also like to point out that high-end equipment is very rarely (if ever) aimed at joe average, it is pitched for those people who feel it necissary to spend a months wages achieving slight benefits over the rest of us. The true value of these benefits is indeed debateable, but this is a whole seperate area of discussion.

    I very rarely post in 'comments' sections, I feel it is a complete waste of time and effort. But in this case I feel compelled to insist that if, indeed, you ARE a physics student (I sincerely hope that you're not a graduate!), that you go away, do the maths and consider the problem. It seems to me that you post here an awful lot, and very often your comments are ill-informed. You're letting the side down for the rest of us who love physics!

    To everyone else: I'm very sorry for posting such an off-topic rant. Please feel free to go back to discussing the rather dismal prospect of an HD format that will doubtless never materialise; at least not without some very complex licensing deals.

     

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  20.  
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    Shalkar, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 6:29pm

    The Breakdown

    When it comes down to it, the majority of people that even care about High Definition don't really research it that much if at all. Instead, they prefer to just talk to people who have done that research. It's less time consuming and easier for them that way. Personally, I like doing the research myself so I myself know these things. That I'm not just being "told what's good for me".

    Ultimately, people want the best that money can buy. Regardless of whether or not they need it, can afford it, understand it and/or even comprehend it physically. (Seeing and hearing in this case.)

    SO, when you have two formats that from a generic standpoint seem to BOTH be the best, which do you buy? If you have a choice between the two formats, the cheaper one wins. Generally speaking of course. In this case, what movies you like may play a role. That's up to the individual.

    My ultimate prediction for home viewing of movies is the HD-DVD as it is cheaper by a considerable amount. Yes it has half the storage space of Blu-Ray, but if the movie will fit on a HD-DVD then it's pretty safe to say nobody is really going to care. What made VHS beat Betamax, even though Betamax was of somewhat higher quality, is that you couldn't record your entire show on the Betamax. When getting everything on to one disc isn't the problem and quality isn't either, then the next biggest thing is price.

    Blu-Ray would be the winner if the price was the same as the HD-DVD. As it is though, even just having all that extra storage space of the Blu-Ray just isn't worth the cost. Blu-Ray will eventually go to the grave with every other format Sony has made. It'll have company though: The Playstation 3

    So god's speed and god's blessing to Sony. They're self destructing with all of the loss, but it's not too late yet.

    That's my opinion. I may be wrong, but I'm probably not.

     

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    PhysicsGuy, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 6:31pm

    Re: Count Porkula

    oh, i'm trying to impress everyone actually... mostly just the low lives who don't have a base understanding of simple principles and who like to feel high and mighty because their movies don't have jagged edges when viewed from an inch away. i'm glad i was able to impress you though... i can tell i got through to you or else i wouldn't have evoked such a base response that was nothing more than a flame towards me... :) ... oh, and people like ryan don't need to bow before me, i tend to view them as equals with differing opinions and i tend to try to emphasize why i have my particular opinion. it's only the lowly ones like yourself mr. porkula who should bow before the all knowing physicsguy. :)

     

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    Frank, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 6:38pm

    This will all seem a moot point before long

    Media disks of any kind are going to be obsolete in 5-10 years, and standard DVD will bridge that gap for most people, so who cares about this format war. Before long, the whole idea of carrying silver disks for music and movies of any kind will seem silly. The 'permanent' copies of your purchased movies and music will be stored for life on backed-up remote servers and will be available to you wherever you go via universal super-broadband. You will be free to watch them with any media player you own, including your next generation Oakley sunglasses with transparent ultra high def flexible displays fused to the optical lenses. Of course, in 15 years your kids with the super-mega-ultra-high-def contact lens displays implanted behind their irises will find your HD sunglasses to be "so old school". And then come the multimedia brain chips...

     

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    DTatum, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 6:38pm

    Re: Re: Re: Confuse?

    The HD TV craze is cause mostly by the fact that HD TVs are becoming more available and cheaper than traditional TVs. NOT becasue of the image quality hype. Oh and BTW, I bought a new 60 inch rear projection in 1999, just before the HD craze started and see no reason to replace that TV with an HD version. My bedroom TV is old and when I replace it I probably will "upgrade" to HD, only because its more available that traditional TVs.

    Oh and I'd go LCD before I went with a non LCD based HD, size for me is more important than picture quality.

     

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    PhysicsGuy, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 6:38pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Ryan

    well, we're sitting remarkably close to our computer monitors... that's besides the point. frankly, i'm glad if you prefer high def video, i was just stating my opinion on enjoying regular dvds as much as high def and then backing up my opinion. as far as the audio is concerned, i can pick up compression differences when they're almost imperceptible i was just trying to make an indirect joke (and seemingly a rather unfunny one?) on people's musical tastes and their inability to detect individual tones. probably to wrong time and place to do that but whatever.

    My final thought, is why are you even wasting your time discussing this as you clearly have no interest in the forward progression of video technology?

    we're between semesters, it's thursday and i'm bored :)

     

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    DTatum, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 7:06pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Ryan

    His point is, most consumers don't have "a properly calibrated audiophile grade setup" and really don't care that much about the different quality results. mp3s aren't popular becasue they're the best quality... if you wanted quality was your primary concern you wouldn't be using a compressed format at all. In fact you'd be listening to records on a high quality player.

    Yes these new technologies are great! I'm usually an early adoptor in tech areas, and I love all the new stuff, but I don't see any of these technologies being consumer driven. They're being pushed and hyped by marketing and nothing more.

     

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    PhysicsGuy, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 7:07pm

    Re: The difference with HD

    I've always been a sceptic with regard to HD. I did some simple math to work out what the eye can resolve at comfortable viewing distances -simple optics that PHYSICSGUY should definately be familiar with (I hold a masters in physics myself, reading for a pHD). My calculations told me that, yes, you should be able to see it -but not by much. We're talking perhaps three lines of first year undergrad maths here.

    First, I'm not a student of optical physics. I've had courses dealing with optics but is not my area of specialty. Second, I'm curious about your calculations and how you determined "yes, you should be able to see it -but not by much." You give no frame of reference for distance nor degree of pixelization. Of course you can notice the difference, however the further you are from the source the less you are able to notice.

    As for 'natural anti-aliasing'... come on, please read up on your subject matter! 'Anti-aliasing' has no real relevance in the context of this discussion. Nyquist would spin...

    Yes, anti-aliasing is technically the incorrect term, hence the quotes. I used it due to the fact that we're discussing pixelization in which case it becomes completely relevant to the discussion at hand, it's amazing how dense people can be sometimes.

    imagine for a moment that a very slightly tilted line is rendered in a low resolution, producing a 'step'. This will be clearly visable, even at great distance. Render the same line in a higher resolution, and the same line will also include steps -but more of them, and of a much smaller magnitude. The effect it less perceptible

    being clearly visible at a great distance means the pixel unit is rather large... if you were to increase the resolution yet decrease the viewing distance the effect of having "steps" stays roughly the same, rather than where you stay the same distance away and the effect becomes less perceptible.

    let's do a thought experiment. imagine looking at your initial jagged line. now take a step back about a foot, what happens to the line? now continue stepping back, eventually wouldn't it appear to be a smooth line? the further you get away the smaller the pixels become and due to the proximity of one pixel to the next they appear to be one continuous object after a certain distance. this is the whole basis of my argument and it is the "natural anti-aliasing" of the eye in which i speak. the further you move away from something the smaller it becomes which is in essence the same, when dealing with pixelization, as staying the same distance yet increasing the resolution.

    But in this case I feel compelled to insist that if, indeed, you ARE a physics student (I sincerely hope that you're not a graduate!), that you go away, do the maths and consider the problem. It seems to me that you post here an awful lot, and very often your comments are ill-informed. You're letting the side down for the rest of us who love physics!

    that's interesting, what i speak of can be solved with a simple thought experiment as demonstrated above. i've considered the problem and understand it very well. yes, i do post here a lot, i enjoy the site, however you'd be hard pressed to point out how my comments are ill-informed from the standpoint of physics. or are you the one who tried to tell me that zero g literally means zero gravity?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 7:08pm

    its the best option thats been presented. and is actually the LEAST confusing for consumers..."WILL PLAY ON ANY HD PLAYER" how confusing is that?

    sometimes you guys are morons, just like all the linux humpers with their personal agenda. if its not easy, its not going to succeed. 99% of the population doesnt care how stable it is running from a command prompt you freaks.

     

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    SimplyGimp, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 7:17pm

    Re: Re: Confuse?

    Bumbling old fool, go choke on some glass. If you're stupid enough to get screwed from buying into a new technology then you're the only one to blame.

    No one is forcing you to NEED HD movies. No one is forcing you to WATCH these movies and NO ONE is forcing you to buy a player that might not be the standard in a year.

    So no, I don't have pity for idiots that get screwed by a dead format. That's part of researching what you intend to buy, and if you're too lazy to research what you buy, you deserve to be disappointed. No one is going to do the work for you, although you seem to expect it. I guess your name fits you perfectly.

    So if you're too dumb to figure this out, go ahead and buy whatever format you think will win, then cry if it it's what stays around. Otherwise STFU and don't buy anything until the format is solid.

    Either way, you're a freaking moron.

     

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    jimmy, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 7:32pm

    Hmm...

    To me, I would think (with what I've heard) blu-ray has advantage when it comes to storing more information on one disc- a definately plus for those of us who enjoy buying television series. It wouldn't surprise me if eventually an entire season could fit on one disc.
    Blu-rays disc's however seem unnecessary when it comes to just a movie, where it would seem neither HD-DVD or BLU-RAY has the upper hand unless one costs more to produce.
    The dual format players seem like the best bet in my opinion. If SONY pushed the blu-ray for holding television series I think it would hold a definitive advantage over the HD-DVD's and find a strong foot hold that HD-DVD cannot compete with. Push the fact it carries more and the convience of having an entire tv series/season on one disc and though they might not push out HD-DVD's at least it will gaurantee them a good seat in the market.
    I'd easily pay more for a dual format player if I can have every original star trek episode on one disc, or even three (one per season).
    My two cents.

     

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    ScytheNoire, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 8:04pm

    DRM?

    but as long as any format has DRM, it's pointless to argue about it. who wants to spend money on a player, television, and the content when any of them can be made useless at any time due to DRM. i know i'd be pissed as hell if my legally purchased content no longer works properly due to DRM.

    so it doesn't matter what the format is as long as the DRM still exists.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  31.  
    identicon
    Erstazi, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 8:57pm

    First off, I will say that most of this High Definition is sales hype. Use to be a manager at a retailer. We would restrict the normal TV's quality so the HD would look better with their HD content coming in. HD does look good. But when you do step back and sit back on your couch, there really isn't much difference. Most people do not care about HD. The ones that do are the type of people who like to have the latest tech. Remember, HD is all in the pixel count. The main push is Digital TV's because analog NTSC transmissions are mandated to cease in the United States by February 17, 2009. But this date keeps on being pushed further away. Last I knew it was 2007. (: Now, do I dislike High Definition? No. Do I think that since the prices have dropped drastically that it would explain the high sales? Yes. Common economics. But Digital TV is right now the bread winner.

     

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  32.  
    identicon
    jimmy, Jan 4th, 2007 @ 11:56pm

    What gets me

    Is all the different formats, contrast ratios, LCD vs Plasma, 1080p vs 1080i vs a regular old monitor. So adding HD-DVDS or Blu-Ray on top of that is enough to drive me nuts.
    Heck I hear 480p is basically already standard resolution on most sets and is less than I'd get on a computer monitor- but I see them for sale all over the place. same with the err .. 720s? Wiki made it look like 720p? is about the same as a computer monitor and 1080p is what you want to get over that.
    As a consumer, I want the HDTV to do everything I need it to. I want to be able to have everything in its own little corner of the screen. I want to use the net on it, I want to chat and post on it, I want to play games on it, I want to watch movies on it. To me that's more important than movies- the one screen to do it all. And allegedly, least from what I've heard- the 480p resolution I may as well use my S-video out to try to read text on my television screen. That I need at least 720? if I want it to be comparable to my computer monitor.
    Course if I'm wrong about this feel free to say so. My knowledge of the subject is limited and well- since I want my next t.v. capable of doubling as a computer monitor I've been trying to find out exactly how it compares.
    I get nervous when I can set my computer resolution to better than the 720p is. 1200x800 or something like that.
    I'm taking a wait and see attitude. I got the Wii and I'm 120% sure I'm having more fun playing that then I would have with the ps3 or xbox 360. The only thing that would make me rush out and get an HDTV and bluray player is if they were putting entire seasons on one disc cheaper than I'd be paying for a 7 disc season with reg dvd.

     

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  33.  
    identicon
    College Matt, Jan 5th, 2007 @ 6:54am

    It's Simple

    Blu-Ray holds more data than HD DVDs. Therefore, HD DVDs are already antiquated, Blu-Ray is better. Congratulations Blu-Ray, you win! I don't understand why people can't understand that. The reason the inferior HD DVDs aren't out of the running at this point is because the consumer is already comfortable with the "DVD" name. If the consumer ever comes to realize this, bye bye HD DVD.

     

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  34.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 5th, 2007 @ 9:36am

    Re:

    FTA: "...particularly when dual-format players are already trying to bridge the divide."

    What part of this did you not understand? These players are already on the horizon.

    It is irrelevant for customers. That's why it's a format war. It's all about marketing. If customers really gave a rat's ass because one was clearly superior then there wouldn't be much to fight over. Both essentially deliver equal quality results and therefore the battle will be in who can get their name ingrained with the public better and faster (HD-DVD or Blue Ray). My money will be on HD-DVD if any simply because from a marketing perspective the term HD is synonymous with high definition content – what the hell is Blue Ray? will be one of the first and last questions out of people's mouths.

     

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  35.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 5th, 2007 @ 9:52am

    Re: We need non-writeable non-PC-compatible HD dis

    You seem to forget that if there is demand anything incompatible will become compatible. It is a fundamental with anything digital. If the hardware exists someone will adapt it. If the software doesn't exist someone will write it. (IMHO) This is an unavoidable fact that cannot be overcome for any serious length of time.

    Technology moves too fast for the market. By the time the new format is adopted the technology has already been circumvented (Newfangled DVD Copy Protection Apparently Cracked). There are only two solutions: create draconian laws to the point of oppression so that the industry has a death grip on consumers (and they sure are trying hard to get there) –or– find a different business model which works with free distribution.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  36.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 5th, 2007 @ 9:58am

    Re:

    You apparently don't know what happens when you watch a standard DVD at a true high definition. You find nothing wrong with it because you don't know any better – go watch them side by side first before you bother to make such an obviously ignorant insight.

    HD is far and away noticeably better and anyone with 1/2 their eyesight can see the difference. The problem with the format push is the industry's attempt to keep fighting the already-lost battle with their ever-failing superhero DRM-man. That's what the pissing is all about.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  37.  
    identicon
    JM, Jan 5th, 2007 @ 10:24am

    Re: Re: Re: Confuse?

    Where to start...

    First, it really is ignorant to think that everyone on the planet should HAVE to do in-depth research just to purchase an everyday form of entertainment or household appliance to keep from getting screwed. What's next? I need to spend 3-weeks researching which toaster to buy just so it toasts both sides without burning them rather than burning a single side? That's just dumb.

    Second, It's not about need. You don't need 90% of the shit you own I'm sure. If you're like most of us you could get by without a car, or stove, or stick-built house for that matter. Convenience is what things are about and as consumers of convenience, in today's reality, it is ridiculous to make really any of the suggestions you've made.

    Third, where the hell do you think a 'solid' format comes from? Early adopters. Those with enough money to get the stuff before anyone else. Yes it's a risk. But you wouldn't have shit if everyone just waited to see if the format was going to take – it takes because consumers purchase it.

    Finally, the simple fact that your rebuttal is full of 90% whining about the fact that someone called you on your draconian ignorance and you don't actually have any kind of critical thinking going on except that which drives your sense of inferiority (leading to a rant about how dumb the world is because you're so smart) makes your ignorance completely transparent.

    Sorry man but you've come off as a far bigger moron.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  38.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 5th, 2007 @ 10:32am

    Re: 5 versions

    Ummm... Formats, KC. Formats.

    You listed four formats – just like the article stated.

    1. HD-DVD
    2. Blu-Ray
    3. Total DVD
    4. SD (standard definition)

    SD Widescreen/Fullscreen are not formats – they're aspect ratios. And ***-cut's are are not formats either – they're simply different, wait for it... cuts of the same movie (as in different content).

    Not sure, but it seems to me you need to educate your self, well, quite a bit on this subject.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  39.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 5th, 2007 @ 10:42am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Confuse?

    And thus you still haven't figured out that you're NOT the target audience? Ummm... wow.

    You're siting some kind of self-made fact about why the HD market is popular with ZERO concrete arguments other than your own opinion. And, in the same breath you state flat-out that you don't care about picture quality – hrm... distorted perspective of what everyone wants based on your personal limited view of what you want? I think so.

    You may very well be correct in your assumptions however that's all they are and it would be nice to hear an argument with some thought behind it outside your own obviously limited perspective of what people want.

    I, myself, am not about to spend any serious amount of money (and I am currently in the market) on home theater without the best and biggest possible picture for the money. Why? If you have to ask that then just go away cause your intelligence isn't worth the energy I'd spend making you sound as dumb and you look.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  40.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 5th, 2007 @ 10:54am

    Re: Re: Re: Ryan

    I have seen both as well. Compared to SD HD blows it away so there is two possible conclusions here:

    1. You didn't actually view true HD at a size that counts. HD isn't intended for your 32" screen really – it's about home theater. Lot's (and I mean a hell of a lot) of TV's out there suggest they have HD capability but don't give a good quality HD experience if any (based on multiple technical reasons too lengthy to discuss in this forum).

    2. You have poor eyes in one way or another. Near-sighted, Far-sighted, color-blind, some weird disease, whatever. Just because you can't see it doesn't mean it isn't superior to those of us that can.

    Sorry but you're wrong. Simply knowing the fact that it's better may influence some people but I've looked at the difference, side-by-side, in different lighting conditions. There is a CLEAR superiority and quality difference between the two when viewing at 1080p for sure. I haven't purchased any of the HD TV's out there yet because most of them aren't good enough to give me a truly amazing HD performance – the one's that are are still pretty expensive.

    Feel free to perceive yourself as superior because you have a lack in your senses granting you immunity to actually see/hear the difference. It's unfortunate that your handicapped in such a way, you're really missing out. Still, my first bet is that you flat don't know enough about the subject to realize it's your hardware that is at fault for the lack in image/audio enhancement which give YOU a false perception that it isn't really any different.

    Sucks to be you.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  41.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jan 5th, 2007 @ 11:01am

    Re: Re: Re:

    So what? I'm supposed to watch my TV from 12 feet away if it's 42+ inches?

    You're suggestion that I should change my viewing environment to fit the TV is retarded. I will change the TV to fit the viewing environment and that means a higher quality picture.

    Why are you even wasting space here?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  42.  
    identicon
    The Original Just Me, Jan 5th, 2007 @ 11:28am

    Total DVD is (kind of) a scam

    Any pundit claiming the format war is over is a lazy bastard.

    You are still paying for two lasers, same as if you'd purchased a BR and an HD. Sure, there's some added economic benifit in terms of saving on licensing and components, but the Total DCD players are hella expensive.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  43.  
    identicon
    SomeDude, Jan 5th, 2007 @ 3:18pm

    Not Worth My Money

    I can't speak for 'the average Joe Consumer', but for me:

    I either want an inexpensive DVD (or equivalent) or I'll get the damn thing off the net.

    I've recently purchased a cheap TV Tuner for my PC, I buy DVDs, download movies, and watch TV on my PC. I could give two shits about HD/Blu/wtfever if it's going to be a monetary burden.

    Make it inexpensive, standardized and worthy of investment or I'll just dload a cruddy compressed version off the net for free.

    Disclaimer: I've seen many burned by the laserdisc fad, and I'm perfectly happy with my 200+ DVD collection

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  44.  
    identicon
    PhysicsGuy, Jan 5th, 2007 @ 5:49pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Ryan

    wow... some people just don't know when to stop. what is it about "after a certain distance the pixelation is not noticeable?" that can't seep through your incredibly thick skull? this isn't something wrong with my eyes, it's simple logic. and if simple logic is too much, try an experiment. next time you compare them side to side, take a step back, did the pixelization on the standard dvd just seem to decrease? it did? wow... now take another step back... zomg, it didn't just seem to get clearer again did it?!?!!? zomg nohhzzzz

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  45.  
    identicon
    Shalkar, Jan 6th, 2007 @ 1:22am

    Well...

    Erstazi, I thank you for your opinion and I agree whole heartedly.

    Jimmy, I'd honestly wait another year to get your H.D.T.V. not only because of the prices dropping, but for the same price you'll get alot more features. As for what brand, I personally recommend Samsung. They're other stuff is pretty good, but their best product is their H.D.T.V. collection. If they have a technology at their disposal, it's on their televisions. So any of their LCD or Plasma televisions should work as a monitor also. Just make sure to check the specs to make double sure! Just looking at the connections is all you need to do as far as that is concerned though.

    480p/i = 720x480
    720p/i = 1024x768
    1080p/i = 1920x1080.

    So that's why you're probably better off with a bigger screen if you wanna use the 1080p/i. I suggest, quite personally, a 30" at the bare minimum. I'm going for a 40" since I'm use to a 32" as the vertical won't be as tall on the new set since it's gonna be widescreen and not standard. Remember to take that in to consideration.

    As for what is better, p for progressive or i for interlaced, go for p. I really don't know why they even BOTHER supporting the i. They should just cast it to the tech gods of death and be done with it. Progressive is better overall. Interlaced is where it first draws the even-numbered lines and then the odd-numbered lines. So just like the old "boob tube" it does 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, etcetera and then the 1, 3, 5, 7, 9 etcetera. Progressive draws all of the lines at one time. It's alot smoother, so I think it'd be easier on the eyes. I ain't no expert on the eyes though! lol

    If you can wait to get a new television then do. I'm only going to be getting a new one maybe this year as opposed to maybe next because my television is looking like it's going to die, finally, after this 11th year of service. The Samsung LN-S4095D 40" 1080p LCD HDTV is what I'm considering getting. The only reason I'm even considering spending more than a $1,000 on my next television is that I figure I won't be getting another for a looooong time! Amazon.com hast it for $1,800 and free shipping. If anybody can happen to find it lower, please feel free to tell me.

    Oh! I almost forgot! AVOID any television with one of those stupid DCR, (Digital Cable Ready), Tuners! You're paying extra for nothing! As of right now, when the card is in your T.V. it can only RECIEVE information from your cable/satellite provier. This means no C.O.D., (Cable on Demand/Per-Per-View), and most importantly no guide. Until the next generation of those things comes out, they're not even worth considering. Not to mention you still have to pay your cable/satellite provider for the card they put in and for the person to come out and put it in...

    As for LCD versus Plasma, that depends on the person. Right now the consensus is that LCD has deeper colors, so I've heard people claim, and the fact is that the Plasma's have a much higher contrast ratio.

    Plasma's :: LCD's
    10,000:1 :: 6,000:1

    Personally I really don't see a difference, but I doubt I've actually seen a properly calibrated set in the store. LCD's are quite a bit cheaper though! ;)

    I really like that scenario of having an entire season on one disc, but it'd most likely just be fewer discs as far as HD content went. For the Star Trek episodes I wonder if they COULD fit them all on one disc... Make me wonder! lol :D

    Most likely though, HD-DVD will win for the word association and lower price. Either way though, I'd just want a few years to find out.

    As for the Wii... Nintendo must be having wide spread heart attacks of joy... The DS Lite is the best selling gaming platform, considering home consoles and hand held consoles, for 2006 and most likely 2007 if this trend continues. The Wii sold 4 MILLION units from when it came out in November of 2006 - December 31st 2006. The Xbox 360 sold 10 million for the entire year of 2006. The PS3? Barely over 400 THOUSAND from November 2006 - December 31st 2006. Plenty on the shelves meanwhile Nintendo is making a HUGE comeback and Microsoft's console, (Which when Sega left the console making market and became just a game developer/publisher it sold all rights and research pertaining to console making to Microsoft.), is finally gaining a true foothold on the market as well as true "street cred' ". The PS3 is pretty much doomed...

    P.S. If you'd like to talk to me more about this or anything else, please feel free to contact me via the link you'll get by clicking on my name.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  46.  
    identicon
    Justin, Jan 6th, 2007 @ 7:52am

    The vast majority of people don't care about HDTV. If it was the de-facto standard, people would be forced to purchase HD TVs and HD DVD players, but it isn't.

    DVD should have progressed by replacing the MPEG2 codec but keeping the physical medium (as China's EVD project have done).

    As it is, I believe that the average consumer will ignore HD-DVD and Blu-Ray but jump on Holographic Discs in the future, due to their improved storage capacity.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  47.  
    identicon
    Lee, Jan 10th, 2007 @ 9:46pm

    To Physicsguy

    The whole concept of stepping back to view the picture and making it look better is correct, but people today arent interested in that, people want the movie theater-like experience in their homes. Thats why the 5.1 surround sound took off like it did. people want to get that same experience at home that they get in the theaters. So that means consumers want the larger television, and the dont want to move back to watch it. And as youve stated, the difference IS noticable when your not very far away, and thats what people want, the best quality to simulate the cinema. Thanks

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  48.  
    identicon
    Maciej Czyzewski, Feb 22nd, 2007 @ 2:37pm

    Re: Re:about sony take-over-the-world idea

    i agree all the way.those people should be stopped.and i have to admit that the most of my own a/v equipment is made by them.every movie i watch on tv,every music video... signed by sony...
    this is another world war two all over again.just this time they have the tech to finish with a smile.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  49.  
    identicon
    Common sence, Nov 24th, 2007 @ 6:46am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Ryan

    Try this physics problem on for size, ass monkey. Say for instance a guy has a 50 or 60 inch HD television and he sits 10 or 15 feet away with a wall behind him eliminating the oppurtunity to continue backing away from his television until he's watching from his driveway. Do ya s'pose 1080P over standard DVD might help reduce some of that pixelation or is this scenario to close to the "nose on the screen" scenario you like to bring up so too often?
    Is it alien to you that people by a big screen TV so they can have a great big screen to watch? If backing away makes the pixelation go away wouldn't it also make the screen smaller? If I could watch a movie on my entire wall for a more immersive and enjoyable movie experience I would do it and if 1080P lets me see a sharper picture from 10 feet away where the pixelation would indeed be perceptable without my "nose in the screen" instead of watching from a distance that would make the screen smaller then it is worth it to me and many other people. I guess the simple physics of it are too much for you to grasp, eh? Maybe finishing your degree will teach you about compensating for the variables, eh "Physics Guy"? *rolls eyes*

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  50.  
    identicon
    harry, Mar 13th, 2008 @ 6:27am

    DVD soft

    i have found a DVD soft for the first time at http://loadingvault.com

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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    Rapidshare, Mar 27th, 2008 @ 10:57am

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    Rust, Oct 20th, 2008 @ 8:54am

    Re: Re: We need non-writeable non-PC-compatible HD dis

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    wesele, Oct 29th, 2008 @ 7:50am

    Hej

    As for the Wii... Nintendo must be having wide spread heart attacks of joy... The DS Lite is the best selling gaming platform, considering home consoles and hand held consoles, for 2006 and most likely 2007 if this trend continues. The Wii sold 4 MILLION units from when it came out in November of 2006 - December 31st 2006. The Xbox 360 sold 10 million for the entire year of 2006. The PS3? Barely over 400 THOUSAND from November 2006 - December 31st 2006. Plenty on the shelves meanwhile Nintendo is making a HUGE comeback and Microsoft's console, (Which when Sega left the console making market and became just a game developer/publisher it sold all rights and research pertaining to console making to Microsoft.), is finally gaining a true foothold on the market as well as true "street cred' ". The PS3 is pretty much doomed...

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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    The HD TV craze is cause mostly by the fact that HD TVs are becoming more available and cheaper than traditional TVs. NOT becasue of the image quality hype.

     

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