HD-DVD at BB

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Ed St. Clair, Feb 28, 2006.

  1. Ed St. Clair

    Ed St. Clair Producer

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    Well thanks to a heads up from someone at another forum, I got to see HD-DVD last night at the Pleasant Hill, CA. BB.

    Tosh HD-XA1
    http://www.tacp.toshiba.com/hddvd/
    via HDMI (gosh, sweet)
    to
    Pioneer Plasma
    http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage....=1118842671425

    With a continuos HD-DVD demo loop. Demo disc featured;
    Serenity
    Batman Begans
    Charlie & The Chocolate Factory
    Corpse Bride
    Dukes of Hazard (movie)
    King Kong (2005)
    The Interrupter
    40 Year Old Virgin

    The XA1 player looked fantastic. It looked like a $1000 player! Picture showed much better color than DVD (I had just watched Serenity the night before). Best picture I've ever seen from a in-store plasma display. Even with the problem of the Pioneer Plasma's green blacks, false contouring, & pixalization. Of coarse the Pioneer was downrezing the 1080i disc, rescaling it to its native scan rate.
    Sound was from 'friends don't let friends buy' Def Techs bi-polars (I swear it was 50/50), with a center channel shut in a drawer, with no sub, & surrounds that where not only facing the wrong way, butt turned off as well. You have to remember I was at BB cum Magnolia.
    Was still impressed with the clarity & dynamics of the sound.

    Spent a half an hour, watching Serenity & Kong twice.
    There were no signs, promoting the player. No price tag. Nothing!
    No one said anything to me at all. At least six BB/Mag employees passed me by. No, hello. No, do you know what your watching? No, would you like to by one?
    Nothing!

    The BB web site only has the A1.

    Sure wish this puppy was 1080p, with a 1080p disc, & hooked up to a 1080p display!!!
    Maybe next year! ;-)
     
  2. PerryD

    PerryD Supporting Actor

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    What does this mean? I've never heard anything but positive things about Definitive Technology speakers, especially for home theater use.
     
  3. Kyle_D

    Kyle_D Second Unit

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    Seriously, Def Techs are great speakers, especially for their price. I'v been listening to them for years and haven't heard a negative word said about them until now.
     
  4. Nathan_R

    Nathan_R Supporting Actor

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    Best Buy carries Def Tech now?

    Friends don't let friend buy Def Techs? Did you mean Bose?
     
  5. Ed St. Clair

    Ed St. Clair Producer

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    Well it was not the propose of this thread to dis DT. However, I did. It came from the Audio Forum many moons ago. I also have seen only good reviews & heard good things about the sound. If I am not mistaken, the quote comes for those that feel DT is not a great value or bang for the buck product. Four or five years ago, people posted that you could do better for the money. Even those folks, did not say the sound was bad.
    My bad, for offending anyone.

    Update:

    HD-DVD Traveling Show hits Fry's in Concord, CA.

    Again with the;

    HD-XA1
    This time hooked up to a 1080 Tosh display.
    Which crushed blacks like nobody's business. Color was not as impressive as the Pioneer Plasma, yet fleshtones really stood out as being much closer to realistic than SD-DVD (again). Depth, as with the plasma, was good. The only visual detail that really grabbed me with both displays was hair.

    The sales pitch (well, the answers to my questions at least);

    1. The A1 & XA1 will both be released together in March (no date).
    2. There was no info wither second generation players would do 1080p.
    3. No software will be 1080p, NONE!!! Only 1080i sources for this format (HD-DVD). That was a shocker, to say the least.
    4. 30 titles will be available at hardware launch (good luck).

    Horrible sound system. No rear spks, no sub, even though there were two pair of spks for the front channels (I would assume only one pair would be used at a time), I only heard sound from an underwhelming, badly colored center spk at the bottom on the display. Sad. Inbareassing. How can professionals be so un-professional. I'm an audio guy as well and lossless is a great way to get me on board. This demo would not have impress anyone who's not listening to their TV spks at home. Tragic!
     
  6. Mark Lucas

    Mark Lucas Second Unit

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    Uh oh... Really? There needs to be some real confirmation on this.

    It doesn't sound like they're selling HD-DVD very well with uncalibrated displays and cringe-inducing sound setups. But then again this is Best Buy and Fry's.
     
  7. Ed St. Clair

    Ed St. Clair Producer

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    No kidding!
    Everyone ask everyone they know with HD-DVD/Tosh what's up with this.
    This Tosh rep is in Sunnyvale, CA. tommorow for the show at Fry's. Hopefully, someone can grill him or a rep at another of the HD-DVD road shows about lack of 1080p software for the format.
     
  8. PatWahlquist

    PatWahlquist Supporting Actor

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    I went to the HD-DVD roadshow last night at an Ultimate Electronics here in Las Vegas. They had the higher priced player hooked up via HDMI to a Toshiba DLP. The colors were so cranked up on the display it was distracting. The audio levels for the channels were inconsistent and the bass was so high it was causing the track lighting in the room to rattle. At one point, the Toshiba rep paused on a frame of King Kong's face to show all of the detail, which is impressive. However, I could see something that appeared to be aliasing or compression underneath Kong's eye!

    As enthused as Toshiba seems to be, it doesn't feel like the product is a month from launch. I asked the Tosh rep if the player was a production model, and he said it was one of 22 demos touring right now. Once the roadshow is over, they all go back and the roll out begins. I asked him if they had any finalized discs, and he said they hadn't been provided yet.

    This is very disheartening with the launch so close. Six months ago, Sony came to RC Wiley here to show off the SXRD and a BR player. Six months ago, the Sony display was equal to what Tosh showed off last night...SIX MONTHS AGO.

    As excited as I am about these new formats, I am now more hesitant...
     
  9. ChrisMatson

    ChrisMatson Cinematographer

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    Hasn't this always been one of the big differences between Blu-ray and HD-DVD?
    Blu-ray supports 1080p and HD-DVD does not.
     
  10. Ken_F

    Ken_F Stunt Coordinator

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    The Toshiba marketing reps don't understand the technologies involved. All they understand is that no HD-DVD software will play back at 1080p on their first-generation players. That's certainly true -- the chip inside the $499 Toshiba player can only output 1080i (and 720p). Of course, your 1080p set could still de-interlace this into 1080p...

    We know from other forums that all early HD-DVD titles will be encoded at 1080p. We know this because the people actually creating the HD-DVD and Blu-ray titles in the studio post-production houses have told us so. Indeed, many of the authoring tools currently being used for HD-DVD don't even support 1080i.
     
  11. Ed St. Clair

    Ed St. Clair Producer

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    Well Ken, both you and DaViD are OK with this 1080i only disc thing being totally wack. I would hate to have to backoff in anyway from my 1080p or die stance.

    IMO, the new HD formats are all about;
    1080p source, 1080p playback, 1080p display.

    Not that one would have to buy all three units at once. Just, I'm not going for a 1080i player to be replaced by a 1080p player & from a 1080i display to a 1080p display. Don't want to do it, can not afford to do it.

    Heck, I don't even want any 1080i discs (of my fave films, as stated before; Maybe TV, docs, whatever)!
     
  12. Mark Lucas

    Mark Lucas Second Unit

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    So are the HD-DVDs going to be 1080p or what? I thought we had the answer but now the guys doing the demoing are saying 1080i. What is it? WE MUST KNOW.
     
  13. Lance_G

    Lance_G Extra

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    Just back from the HD-DVD demo at Fry's in Sunnyvale.

    Overall, not really impressed.

    The rep could not answer most of the questions asked.
    It seems the whole idea is to be first to market over Blu Ray. He kept stating that the menu interface on the new players is faster and easier to use, yet could not demo this on the players in store. Cosmetically, the players do look pretty nice though.

    Also, they did not have a fully HD mastered film to show, just the movie trailers stated above. Seems odd with release only 4 weeks away. Corpse Bride and Serenity trailers looked good, Batman Begins not so much.

    I cannot see how they will have these ready to sell in less than 4 weeks. Just my opinion.
     
  14. Sean Bryan

    Sean Bryan Sean Bryan
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    Unfortunately, reps are reps.

    Some are better than others, but rarely do any have everything right. Sometimes because they weren't given the right information from those who train them on what to say, and other times because they just get something confused. This is certainly not unique to the Hi-Def formats, and should be expected by anyone with even a little experience in following the development and release of any consumer electronics device/format.

    So that being said, it shouldn't be surprising that a rep would be confused about the 1080i/p issue (discs mastered in 1080p but first players only output 1080i).


    Nope.

    The information about HD DVD discs being mastered in 1080p has already been by clarified by those who know what they are talking about at AVS, and that information has been posted and discussed here at HTF as well. It is unfortunate that a comment by a confused sales rep has gone and made some people worried about this again.


    I have to say, it is really lame that at 28 days out from launch HD DVD does not have a single "real HD DVD" to demo.
     
  15. Brent M

    Brent M Producer

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    I agree, Sean. How hard would it be for them to have a copy of Batman Begins or some other high profile flick rather than just a bunch of trailers/clips?
     
  16. Ed St. Clair

    Ed St. Clair Producer

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    Lance,
    Not much hoopla for a new format/product demo/roadshow, was it?
    If your like me though, your probably pleased you attended. It sure is better than just reading posts about it (hey, nothing against posts or this forum). You had the same Tosh rep I did, yesterday in Concord. Wish you would have asked about the disc resolution. I'm sure many think I am losing my mind (those that don't already think that anyway) over this.
    Corpse was my standout as well. Many think Kong is king! ;-)
     

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