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High Definition DVD: What is Holding You Back?

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by Ronald Epstein, Jun 17, 2006.

  1. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator
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    I am certain that all of us are immensely excited over the new
    high definition DVD formats that have already astounded members
    of this forum. I think it's safe to assume that every one of us is
    looking forward to upgrading to these new formats. I'm also certain
    that had their only been ONE format launched rather than TWO, there
    would be a much higher percentage of us who would have already
    purchased their first player.

    The format war is the obvious reason why most of us have not
    migrated over to the new format at this time.

    I am interested in hearing what needs to happen in order for
    the rest of us to begin supporting the high definition format(s)
    .

    Please tell us why you have not opted to purchase any one of the
    two players at this time and what needs to happen before
    you will consider doing so.

    Realize studios and manufacturers are reading your comments so
    please remain professional and constructive with your responses.

    Of course, the underlying theme here is it's not a matter of IF....
    ...but WHEN
    .

    *
    Please let's try to limit discussion from those that are not yet owners
    as I want to avoid turning this thread into a debate amongst owners vs. non.
    This is simply a questionnaire for those that have not yet purchased HD-DVD.
     
  2. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Administrator
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    Let me start....

    The studios have already given us an incentive. They are not
    prohibiting the use of component output/input with these formats.
    That means, probably for the next few years, none of us need to
    upgrade our non-HDMI compliant televisions. That's a major PLUS!

    For me, there are three factors that are preventing me from purchasing....

    1. Price. I don't mind $400-$500 for a DVD player, but I'll be damned
    if I spend $1000 on a player that's not only a first-generation unit, but
    with the knowledge that either format could go belly-up in a year or more.
    The price of Blu-Ray hardware absolutely needs to drop to HD-DVD
    hardware levels.

    2. First Generation. First generation units seems sort of
    clunky and have had a few bugs (which are now fixed via firmware).
    Knowing that within a few months there will be more improvements
    in hardware which will be more streamlined and cheaper is an
    incentive for me to wait.

    3. Software. Unless the studios are fully into these formats
    and start releasing NEW TITLES DAY & DATE, I'm not really interested
    in picking up catalog titles. The titles that are being released now are
    at best, mediocre compared to what could be released....

    ...although if Warner had released Batman Begins on HD-DVD and Fox
    had released Moulin Rouge on Blu-Ray, I might already be
    a proud owner of both formats.
     
  3. Paul_Scott

    Paul_Scott Well-Known Member

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    This thread doesn't apply to me as I'm already an owner of one of the formats, but I just had to comment on this-
    if there weren't a war right now, we would not be seeing $500 players this early in the game. I think there is also a good chance we would be getting stuck with more and more compromised, poorly inverse telecined 1080i transfers than we will (we still could get stuck with them from some studios, but I think the sense of competetion is going to make more of them more circumspect about what they deliver now).
    Competetion isn't all bad.
     
  4. GrahamMc

    GrahamMc Member

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    Well, I for one am really excited about finally having access to uncompressed HD and being able to enjoy movies in much higher quality video and (hopefully) audio. That being said, I haven't even begun to think about making a purchase yet. I'm not exactly sure which is holding me back more, the 1st gen fears, the slow beginning of software availability, or (most likely) the format war. I'm a big supporter of SACD and Dvd-Audio, but both of those formats are nearly extinct. I know the format war is not strictly to blame, but it certainly contributed heavily to the problem and put a bit of a bad taste in my mouth. So, as ready as I am to embrace new technology, I'm fear I'm going to have to wait a LONG while to see how this shakes out. I'm not sure what the solution is from the studios, but a rapidly expanding software library and affordable universal players will definitely help to put me at ease and coax my cash. Until then, I'll be watching and waiting.

    Graham McCollum
     
  5. Chad R

    Chad R Well-Known Member

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    The main aspect holding me back right now is the format war. Frankly, $500 is more than I want to spend on something that could be a dead format in a few years, and obviously $1000 is right out. Also, the fact that neither of the available players for both sides are 100% yet (not supporting new audio codecs) is a big issue with me. I'd prefer to have a player that does it all.

    But, that doesn't mean I don't go to Best Buy every week and drool over players. I want High Def badly. So, as to my thinking lately, it's a little back and forth.

    I obviously can read about the technological superiority of Blu-Ray. They've got numbers on their side for storage, etc. But, for me, it's about the movies. When all is said and done, I'm sure each format will deliver excellent picture and sound -- I'm over the whole extras pheonomenon havng come from LaserDisc and most extras seem like the same information over and over again spread out over multiple movies.

    So, if movies are key, I'd want to go with the format where the movies are. right now Blu-Ray has the best studio support, most all of them except Universal. However, there's not one movie currently announced for Blu-Ray I'd be interested in. The Terminator movies are nice, but I've seen both of those so much in my life, I'm not chomping at the bit to watch them again anytime soon. HD-DVD may have fewer studios, but they have more movies I'd be interested in owning actually out already. For me, "Serenity" is the one title that I want in HD, "Apollo 13" appeals to the space nut in me, "Unforgiven" has such a comlex visual style that it screams for HD, and although I know Warners has announced support for Blu-Ray, they've yet to talk about one title, but have hinted heavily that "Batman Begins" will be HD-DVD in the next few months (and "Superman" at the end of the year).

    So, what will I be buying this year? Not a HD format. Too many variables from the format war, to titles, etc. So, I've decided to upgrade my audio this year. Will probably start with new speakers (been eyeing a set of Axiomm speakers) and then a new receiver when support for Dolby+, TrueHD, and DTS-HD becomes available. That way, when I'm confident that one format will last, I can buy into that and be absolutely ready.

    So, yes, it's a matter of when for me, not if. If HD-DVD could get at least one more major studio to commit titles, actual titles not some vague committment to the format, I'd love to jump on board. Blu-Ray would conversely need some actual titles from the studios that do support them for me to jump on their badwagon.

    Until then, I wait.
     
  6. Tom Brennan

    Tom Brennan Well-Known Member

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    The movies released so far (and announced) are dreadful. Also, are there any displays yet that can accept a 1080p input? I'm also not convinced HDMI is ready for primetime yet. Plus, I'm satisfied with DVD. It looks good and there are plenty of great movies on the format. And the idea of a format war is totally unappealing.

    Give it some time, get good movies released, let HDMI settle in and let the displays take advantage of the format.
     
  7. DonnyD

    DonnyD Well-Known Member

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    I, too, would love to delve into one of the new formats but holding me back is the fact there are TWO and I do not wish to get caught with one that becomes unsupported. Also, I am just wondering just how much better HD-DVD or Blu-Ray really is compared to what is already here? Is it just another slick merchandising gimmick that will be supported by those who simply want to boast in forums or parties that THEY are owners of the IT in ht.

    I have been at a couple of "comparison" events where HD DVD's were being side by side compared with the "usual" resolutions and each time, the "usual" appeared to be purposedly selected the be of poor video quality and in no way represented what I am currently watching at my home right now. The HD-DVD was (IMHO) was pretty much what I see currently on my 1080i upconverting player hooked to a first generation HD TV. Either my observations are pretty much correct or my old eyes are deceiving me and I just do not recall what I do actually have at home. To me, these comparison events missed the mark and were poorly presented.

    Right now, I have concluded that it is a slick merchandising ploy to make us THINK that we need to shell out. It has to get much better than it currently is, for me to take the plunge. That being said, I remain a person who is always looking for the next thing that would move our entertainment value to another stage. To me, that hasn't come but I do empatically salute those members here who are trying to glean the good stuff from the smoke and mirrors and report it to the rest.
     
  8. Geoff Gunnell

    Geoff Gunnell Well-Known Member

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    1. A player that supports both formats AND has Denon 2910 level audio quality on all audio formats at no higher price than a Denon 2910. Or 3910 level performance on all formats at a 3910 price.

    2. Software prices no higher than now, say 19.99 MSRP for typical titles.
    I buy a LOT of software and I will not support studio glottony any more than that.
     
  9. Nate Anderson

    Nate Anderson Well-Known Member

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    For me, it's a combination of several things:

    Price: At this point, I do not have the funds to upgrade to new hardware

    I also do not currently own a HDTV, so it does not really make sense to upgrade to HDDVD at this point.

    I also want to wait and see where the format goes, if one wins over the other, that sort of a thing.

    Plus, there are not that many good movies that have been released that I would want to get on the format at this point.
     
  10. Ric Easton

    Ric Easton Well-Known Member

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    As much as I'd like to jump in... I'll probably wait until there is a clear winner in the format war (I bought Beta). Hopefully it won't take longer than a couple of years.
     
  11. nolesrule

    nolesrule Well-Known Member

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    Well, for me it's mainly a matter of price of the players and lack of software. I have an HDTV (no HDMI), so display is not really an issue for now.

    I do not plan to repurchase titles in HD format except for new films, certain must-have films, and to replace dead DVDs of films that I still want in my library. Just because a movie is in HD doesn't mean I'm going to buy it. So far, the only title on HD DVD or Blu-ray that I want is Apollo 13 (The Fifth Element was pulled off the list).

    As for price, I bought my first DVD player for $500, the Panasonic DVD-A100, and it still works fine today as a secondary DVD player. But after having gone through a few primary players since that have died on me, I am no longer confident in build quality and am not willing to spend that kind of money.
     
  12. Almir

    Almir Member

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    I really don't believe in HD-DVD and Blu-ray. I am afraid they will be forgotten and extinct like SACD and DVD-Audio. That is first thing. Second, I am very happy with regular DVDs and their picture quality and format and all fabulous editions that we have present on the market today. I would only go for HD-DVD and Blu-ray if studios would give us some spectacular editions, something definitely new. I see today HD-DVD and Blu-ray like Laser Disc and Beta systems before. I am afraid in a few years we will have big breakthrough with something new (like DVD did to VHS), and than we all are going to adopt ot that system without many arguing.

    Don't hate me for this, but it is what I think about all this.
     
  13. Paul Anthony

    Paul Anthony Well-Known Member

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    Early HD-DVD (and future Blu-Ray) adopter here! Life is too short to wait for the next big thing. I don't own a 1080p display (and not many people do), so 1080i is good enough for me, so why wait? Enjoy DVDs in High Definition while you can! [​IMG]
     
  14. Dick White

    Dick White Well-Known Member

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    I guess I could just say "all of the above." The format war is probably the biggest factor, but even if it were not there, I would probably be waiting for some "settling in" which would include getting the bugs out and the prices of both hardware and software going down.

    My early adopter days are probably over. And with a huge collection of DVDs that are worth only a fraction of the "bargain" prices I paid for them, I'm not ready to do that again. Since storage space has become a big problem, I'm moving more to a rental model. That will make software prices less of an issue, but I will still be adding to the collection so it won't go away entirely.
     
  15. RobertR

    RobertR Well-Known Member

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    I agree with Ron's reasons in post #2. BD isn't worth twice the price of HDDVD. Also, BD has nothing going for it right now with respect to technical superiority. At the minimum, I'd have to see BD50 and advanced codecs before I consider BD. If HDDVD shows signs that they're really catching on with studios and consumers, that would be a strong reason to sign on with them.
     
  16. Joseph Bolus

    Joseph Bolus Well-Known Member

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    There is only one item holding me back right now: The format war. If there had been no format war I would already own either a HD-DVD deck or a Blu-ray player. But I absolutely refuse to purchase into a format that will not play all of the upcoming studio-released optical HD discs.

    At this point, therefore, I'm going to wait until I can purchase a DVD/HD-DVD/Blu-ray "Combo" deck. I would expect such a deck to be able to provide outstanding 1080i upscaling of my current SD-DVD's; and to also be able to play all my CD's, DVD-R's, and DVD+R's. At that point I could really care less which format "wins" the war. I'll be able to enjoy all my current DVDs until I'm ready to upgrade them; plus I won't have to worry about being "shut-out" of a HD-DVD exclusive release of Jurassic Park or E.T.; or a Blu-ray exclusive release of a James Bond movie.
     
  17. Lars Vermundsberget

    Lars Vermundsberget Well-Known Member

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    There were people who "should have known" who wrote months ago that the "format war" was over before it even started. Well, it doesn't look like that now. That's the most important reason why I say a big NO for the time being.

    But, even if it weren't for that, there are more reasons why I would not be in a hurry to upgrade anyway:

    Price

    "First generation" troubles

    Titles available

    ...and, to me, it's just "too soon" - I don't really feel a need to upgrade now, although I will be happy to buy titles for my collection in a format better than present-day DVD, in a few years. But I probably won't replace most of the titles I've got on DVD now.
     
  18. Kevin C Brown

    Kevin C Brown Well-Known Member

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    I am waiting too.

    I got burned by the DVD-A and SACD thing, so I will not repreat that mistake.

    I will not buy into HD quality video until there is a universal player that will play everything. Has anyone noticed that there are 3 Terminator movies, and you actually have to buy both formats to get all 3 movies? That is just plain stupid.

    Plus, I also firmly believe that there is a sizeable probability that both HD-DVD and Blu-ray will end up as niche formats (if either one survives, frankly). I don't think the average person is going to see the differences between them and SD DVD, or want to pay for yet another new player.

    Plus, remember that all the early DVD releases now have been re-released as Special Editions, with anamorphic video, etc. So why should I buy into HD-DVD or Blu-ray now, when all the current discs will be remastered in a few years anyway with 7.1 sound, even better video quality, etc.
     
  19. Peter Neski

    Peter Neski Well-Known Member

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    If the sudios had any sense they would produce two sided HD DVDs
    with the Blue Ray movie on One Side and the HD DVD on the other
    instead of doing straight dvd on one side

    My reasoning is that the one thing that bothers me more than anything
    about this format war,is that we don't know yet if Warners is going
    to release the same titles in Blue Ray,From what I see HDDVD
    has a much better selection of Titles,That Sony list is almost a joke
    Who cares if "Hitch "is 1080p
    The list of Paramount titles is just as weak,wheres "Godfather","Chinatown"
    Day of Heaven" or a 2.35:1 A " Apocalypse Now" I just don't care
    how good "Stealth" looks in HD

    Wheres "The New World" "Star Wars" "Close Encounters""Jaws" ect ...
    Much like the DTheatre tapes ,they are really holding back.They have
    to have titles that make People buy HD Sets....
     
  20. Simon Massey

    Simon Massey Well-Known Member

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    For me too the principal reason for waiting is the format war but in a way, I dont mind waiting for now. I haven't got a display capable of showing these HD films yet and would much rather wait until I can afford a decent one. At least by then we should be onto 2nd or 3rd gen players which should have most of the problems ironed out and I would think by then the format war will either have been decided in favour of one format or both will end up co-existing together.

    Having said that if the Star Wars films or Lord of the Rings films turn up on one format I could end up giving in [​IMG]
     

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