If I Were Toshiba...

Discussion in 'Blu-ray and UHD' started by Paul_Scott, Apr 26, 2006.

  1. Paul_Scott

    Paul_Scott Lead Actor

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    i would take one further gamble by waiving all licensing fees to Warner and Universal and Paramount for the next 18 months- as long as they remained HD DVD exclusive for that time period.

    i really think, if Warner hadn't already gone out and announced cross platform support, that with upcoming releases like the Potter films, the Matrix movies, Batman, King Kong, Bourne, and the Superman movies- it would have been enough heavyweights that they would have easily countered the "we have more studio support" pitch of Bd- and that, coupled with the lower hardware buy-in costs, and the general satisfaction and enthusiasm of the first users, would have made it supremely difficult for Bd to catch up (as a movie platform) going into the first Christmas season.

    i still think HD DVD has a strong advantage at the moment, and that Bd needs a near flawless roll-out at this point- but i think the whole 'war' could have been all but wrapped up by this time next year
    That isn't to say that Sony would have flipped- i don't think that would have happened for at least 3-5 years- but everyone besides Sony/MGM would have and HD DVDs would be outselling comparable Bd releases 2 to 1, at least.

    -had Warner and the two others just held out longer.
     
  2. Joseph Bolus

    Joseph Bolus Cinematographer

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    While Warner has announced cross-platform support, I don't think it's any secret that they favor HD-DVD. It will be very interesting to see if they release the Superman mega-box to HD-DVD and Blu-ray Disc on the same day.

    Personally, I'm already fed up with this war. I was compiling a list of my Top Twenty favorite catalog titles, and the bottom line is I'll have to purchase both formats in order to get them all in Hi-Def. (And the Blu-ray camp today has pretty much indicated that they will *not* license any "Universal Players" until the format war has been decided.) The prospect of perhaps even having to purchase some movies on *both* formats (due to exclusive supplementary content unique to each format type) has me climbing the walls!

    I love the way cable-supplied High-Def movies look on my projector, and if there was no format war I would own a HD-DVD deck now; but at this point I feel as though the joy has been taken out of my hobby!
     
  3. Herb Kane

    Herb Kane Screenwriter

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    A great question and one I specifically asked WB, which went unanswered. I think it's safe to say that HD DVD will be the favored format.

    Just because the company announced it's support for both formats doesn't mean that every title released will be done so on both formats. The next 6 months - year, will be interestuing indeed.

    I've said this from day one (and Mike O can back me up on this as I stated this sitting directly next to him during a BR demonstration at Sony), that I have a gut feeling HD DVD will come out on top. I say that for many many reasons... but price and my lack of confidence in Sony to do anything right - are the two biggest factors. I keep reading the size of Sony's present (and now biggest) library being a huge factor. I don't see this being as factor - even remotely. They've had 9 years to impress me with the depth and scale of their library, and for the most part, they haven't done so. Short of releasing their blockbusters three or four times or their "improved" SuperBits, there's no reason to believe they're now going to start mining those vaults.

    I had every intention of sitting on the sidelines during this fiasco, but the more I've read, the more HD intrigues me. So, I'll soon be equipped and I'm looking forward to it.
     
  4. PeterTHX

    PeterTHX Cinematographer

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    What, you want a prolonged format war, with HD DVD being the winner?

    If **I** were Toshiba I would end production of my modified laptop and switch to Blu-ray. Because there is no reason for HD DVD to exist, except patent money for Toshiba & NEC. No tech advantage, no price advantage (in the long run costs should be even). No support from the major CE companies other than Toshiba & NEC. No gaming platforms (The XBOX 360 is a player only).

    What about come September when there will be at least 3 BR players out? What about Nov when the PS3 outsells the XBOX add-on a thousand to one? Why would Paramount & Warner be that crazy? Universal support by Christmas for Blu-ray, I will bet virtual money on that.
     
  5. Jeff(R)

    Jeff(R) Second Unit

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    There are some nice advantages Blu-ray has:

    1. More hardware support. All of the Blu-ray-supporting manufacturers will no doubt advertise their products separately, having a large cumulative effect on consumers. Examples: Sony, Sharp, Mitsubishi, Pioneer, Panasonic, Philips, and Samsung. Many of these companies make televisions and receivers and other products they will surely cross promote with their Blu-ray offerings. In stores you'll see a better selection on the Blu-ray side, and increased competition will, I suspect, make the players better.

    2. More studio support. Some may hope that this situation changes, so that they don't have to buy a new player next year, but that fact still exists. And I think that the larger displays in stores for Blu-ray movies compared to the displays for HD DVD (for those stores that will continue to carry HD DVD into next year, if the war lasts that long) will have a large impact on consumers. I can't say for sure which group will have the best titles, as that is a personal preference, but, odds are, with the greater studio support, Blu-ray will have many more.

    3. The PS3. Then of course the PS3 will put millions of players in homes - providing Blu-ray movie playing capability to these people. You won't have to "sell" these people on the merits of HD optical discs. They will already have a reason for wanting these machines in their homes.

    I also think that the Blu-ray format is technically a better format with greater potential for the long term; greater storage space being one distinct advantage.
     
  6. Ryan-G

    Ryan-G Supporting Actor

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    I also have to add...

    4. The PC market is going to turn decidedly towards BR media because of the dramatically larger capacity. Seagate today announced a 750 gigabyte HD. When you need to burn data off of a 750 gigabyte HD, 4 gigabyte DVD's and 9 gigabyte HD-DVD's pale in comparision to 25 gigabyte BR discs. It's nearly a 3 fold decrease in cost. While the mass market may not use computers to view Movies, this combined with the PS3 insures the college age to tweners will be a lock for BR. Once they graduate college, they won't want to waste their existing(If few) titles in order to convert to another format, they'll stay with BR. To be locked almost completely out of the 18-3x demographic is a major loss for HD-DVD. Especially as this is also the demographic most likely to jump on a new tech, which HD is.

    It's also key to keep in mind that a fair portion of the IT world hates MS on principle, and will go with anything just to tweak their nose at them. MS likes HD-DVD, we'll go BR. It's scary how many people in the IT world want everything running on Linux just to tweak their noses at MS.

    The computer industry is pretty much a lock for BR.
     
  7. Juan C

    Juan C Second Unit

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    If I were Toshiba, I'd kill HD DVD and launch SED screens already. That'd be a double service to the enthusiast community.
     
  8. Steve Tannehill

    Steve Tannehill Ambassador

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    Meanwhile, I will have been watching HD-DVD since April 15th.

    First out the gate wins, and this game is over.

    - Steve
     
  9. Juan C

    Juan C Second Unit

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    Wrong. Betamax came out a full year before VHS. Dreamcast launched 15 months before PS2.
     
  10. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

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    Your first point is undeniable—and I’m personally envious of you (and Ron and co) who are able to watch HD now.

    However the second point probably has only a small amount of substance. It is not true in horse races (just watch the upcoming Kentucky Derby [​IMG]) or in technology (Beta was out before VHS). I suggest that it will likely not be true in this case either.

    Regardless I’ll continue to read your reviews and comments with interest as I decide which way to jump.
     
  11. Steve Tannehill

    Steve Tannehill Ambassador

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    It's always a pleasure to bring a little reality into the proceedings.

    - Steve
     
  12. Steve Tannehill

    Steve Tannehill Ambassador

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    Lew, it's not a point of envy. It is just something I firmly believe... the first player to the market has the edge.

    Not only that, the subsequent BD players are going to cost $1000-$1800 ($1800?!?!?). Even with slight early adopter discounts, that is borderline lunatic fringe. By the time the Playstations with the rumored price of $400 hit the market, HD-DVD will have a strong foothold.

    If I were Toshiba, I would avoid all this nonsense many people are posting (at least one I recognize with ties to Sony) and move forward with their business plan.

    - Steve
     
  13. Juan C

    Juan C Second Unit

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    Or giving the players for free. That'd make it an instant success. Great strategy - not.
     
  14. Chad R

    Chad R Cinematographer

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    But, honestly, $500 is a lot of money to some people as well. I can't risk that much money on a new format with a tenuous grip on the lead. Not to mention the prospect of having to buy a new receiver to be able to decode the new audio formats and a new TV to get the full 1080p when I just bought my new HDTV a little over a year ago. The price argument around here hasn't made a lot of sense to me. Yes, $1000-$1800 is a lot of money, and will keep many away from Blu-Ray, but so will the $500 Toshiba's selling at.
     
  15. MichaelPR

    MichaelPR Second Unit

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    I find it funny that people are referencing Blu-Ray as having more space than HD-DVD. HD-DVD currently comes in discs that are 30GB Blu-Rays initial discs will be 25GB in size.
     
  16. Mike Schmitt

    Mike Schmitt Auditioning

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    nice spin, but let's compare apples to apples here...
    single-layer capacity of HD-DVD will be 15 GB, while the same for blu-ray will be 23 - 27 GB. and Double those numbers for dual layer... 30 vs. ~55?
     
  17. Paul McElligott

    Paul McElligott Cinematographer

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    If I were Toshiba, I'd hurry to patch the firmware of existing players before too many people conclude that HD-DVD is a bunch of buggy crap.
     
  18. StephenP

    StephenP Stunt Coordinator

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    If I were Toshiba I would get my non-pc based players out as soon as possible, because I'm not buying the Frankenstein's monster we have lying before us. I guess they have changed their minds about having 2nd generation players out beore the holidays... too bad.
     
  19. Steve Tannehill

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    Change the reference to 1080p and HDTV, and this message could have been written in March of 1997, down to the price of the player... the DVD player.

    I'm glad I got into DVD in March of 1997, and I am equally glad I bought into HD-DVD in April of 2006.

    - Steve
     
  20. Ryan-G

    Ryan-G Supporting Actor

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    Define strong foothold. Because HDTV's are installed in less than 10% of the market, even if they sold a HD-DVD player to every HDTV owner, they still wouldn't have a strong foothold.

    When average joe starts buying HDTV's in a couple years, then HD-DVD *might* manage a strong foothold.

    But by then there'll already be a few million PS3's already in those houses waiting for HDTVs.

    First to market doesn't matter when your market is currently so small and in a short period of time will be so large. Nor does it matter when your capacity limitations means that the entire computer industry will move to your competitor. Nor does it matter when you've pretty much lost the entire 18-3x demographic to PS3 and home computers.

    HD-DVD is a nice product, but all of it's advantages will be completely negated by the time HD discs become mass market products, and at that point it loses all of it's competitive edges.

    I'll be very blunt. Early Adopters don't matter. The HDMI port issue should have already shown that pretty clearly. Downsampling is in the future, and the early adopters are going to eat their component only HDTVs. Same will happen with HD-DVD, because when HD discs become mainstream, HD-DVD doesn't have a single advantage and a large number of disadvantages.
     

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