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Calling all Canadian Hi-def enthusiasts


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14 replies to this topic

#1 of 15 grahamWilliams

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Posted March 07 2006 - 12:04 PM

Hi folks,

I've been a long time member of this board but I signed up a new account because I need some "official" help. I work for a large electronics retailer in Canada (pretty much THE large electronics retailer in Canada) and I've been asked to put together some information about the impending roll our of the Hi Def formats. Essentially we'll be using this information to make sure that our site is the most comprehensive and informative for our customers - which will hopefully lead to a successful launch of these formats.

HD-DVD is launching in less than a month, Blu-Ray is launching in less than two and half months - so my question is this:

As home theater enthusiasts what information is essential to you for these online sites? What do you think are the most important things a consumer needs to know going into a purchase of a new HD player? What do you want to see when you're shopping for an HD player online? (Believe it or not, 40% of our store traffic hits our webstore first for information).

I've already got a stack of information here (some of it contradictory *sigh*) but if you feel like you'd like to be part of this process, I could use the help. Naturally I have to be sensitive to both sets of vendors and to be honest, I haven't made up my mind which way I'm going to go.

So please chime in or PM me. I don't think I've broken the TOS of the board (if I have mods, please let me know, I'll apologize in advance).

Thanks a bunch folks,

Graham

#2 of 15 Ryan Peddle

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Posted March 08 2006 - 12:12 AM

Just a word of advice as I think this is a good thread. You might find more responses at

Digital Home Canada

This is basically a Canadian version of HTF.

#3 of 15 Chris Bardon

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Posted March 08 2006 - 03:35 AM

There are also plenty of Canadians on HTF Posted Image

I don't think any of the information for R1 is too Canada-specific though, unless manufacturers are putting out different SKUs on either side of the border. Not sure how soon I'll be jumping into the HD game myself, but there are definitely a few things I'd like to know about any player:

Outputs-This is a big one that retailers sometimes leave out. How many outputs are there, and what resolutions do they support?
Upconversion-For the first little while, 95% of what people are going to watch on their HD player is upconverted SD stuff. How well does this work?
Supported Formats-Obviously (at first) this is going to be DVD and HDDVD or BRD. Once (and if) hybrid players start coming out, this will be an important thing to know.
What's in the box?-How many extra cables will I have to buy? If a player comes with its own HDMI cable, it may cost more, but it could save you a few bucks from buying one separately.

At this point though, I just want to know when I can see the damn thing. There's an HD DVD tour all over the states now, and I'd really like to see how it stacks up.
XBox Live Gamertag:ChrisBardon

#4 of 15 grahamWilliams

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Posted March 08 2006 - 11:52 AM

Thanks for the input guys, I'll take what we have here to the table on Friday. Does anyone know what sort of copy protection is being put in place for Blu-ray? I'm aware of the HDMI-only HD-out for HD-DVD (anyone need a hyphen??) is there a similar scheme for Blu-ray?

I'll post this over at the Canadian Forum as well, thanks for the heads up.

#5 of 15 Ryan Peddle

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Posted March 08 2006 - 12:20 PM

I received an email from Toshiba Canada about the release of HDVD in Canada

Quote:
Hi Ryan,

The HD-XA1 and the HD-A1 are not being released at the same time as the
US. However, they will be released in April, at the same time as the
initial release of HD DVD movies. When we have a full list of
participating retailers, it will be listed on the website.

Hopefully this answers your question and sorry for the wait! If you haveany other questions, feel free to ask. Also, for HD DVD updates in Canada, you can sign up for the mailing list on www.toshibahddvd.ca.

Kelly Baker

Web Developer
Consumer Electronics Group
Toshiba of Canada Ltd


#6 of 15 grahamWilliams

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Posted March 08 2006 - 12:50 PM

Strange. Most of my material here has release dates of March 28th. Then again - release dates and shipping dates not coinciding is nothing new in the tech world.

#7 of 15 Kelly Grannell

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Posted March 08 2006 - 02:05 PM

Strangest thing is BestBuy/FutureShop doesn't own their own industry analyst and give you the mandate to find information like this.

#8 of 15 grahamWilliams

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Posted March 09 2006 - 04:15 AM

Actually that would be me. There are traditional analysts and there are ecommerce analysts. I'm ecommerce - I started on Monday. Part of my job is research and preparation for emerging technologies. I thought, as a long time member here, that the folks here would be interested in offering their input.

I think this is the point where I state for the record here that anything published by me here is my own opinion or speculation and is not connected to official positions of my employers in anyway. That should probably keep everyone happy.

#9 of 15 Kelly Grannell

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Posted March 09 2006 - 07:50 AM

I hope you don't take this as a personal attack because it's not meant to be. However, what you're doing is not considered research. It's more like compiling the research that have been done by the rest of the members here.

As an industry analyst (of one of your store's major A/V supplier) I can't see the effectiveness with that kind of so-called 'research'.

#10 of 15 grahamWilliams

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Posted March 09 2006 - 09:02 AM

Hmm. It's hard not to take that personally Kelly. I'm doing this of my own volition - no one asked me to do this from the top - again, I just started the job four days ago. I'm fresh out of university and for all I know someone else has done this work already, however I thought I might try to get a first hand look at what people think here.

I've found that the customer is usually a great source of information in regard to what they want. That's how I worked when I was in the retail store and I think it's how I'll continue to approach things. I'm asking a rather well educated and enthusiast group here what they would like to see on a website that, should they chose to shop online, they'll probably visit and hopefully purchase from. Maybe calling it research was innacurate, but isn't the gathering of information research no matter the source?

Specifically to Kelly - It sounds like you've probably got a lot more experience than I do in this area, so if you'd like to PM me or email me (graham dot williams at gmail) I could use any advice you might have. I certainly didn't mean to step on anyone's toes.

I'll apologize again if I've offended anyone with my request and I'd like to thank the people who responded. I've made a few recommendations on how to approach our product heirarchy based on some of the feedback from this forum and from the one linked above.

So, in a nutshell, sorry if I offended or disturbed, thanks for the info and if anyone would like to speak with me in more specific terms PM or email would be great. I'll graciously bow out now.

#11 of 15 grahamWilliams

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Posted March 09 2006 - 09:05 AM

Actually after re-reading that I think you might have mis-interpreted what I do. I'm not looking for specifications and the like - I'm looking to see what information is most important to people when they're shopping online. We've got specs coming out the wazoo - however, drilling down to exactly what a customer is inquiring about is key.

Maybe that will clarify things a little.

#12 of 15 Kelly Grannell

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Posted March 09 2006 - 09:46 AM

Graham, thank you for the clarification. Indeed I was mistaken on what you do at FS/BB. My apology for being harsh.

PM me anytime should you need advice (if I can give you, of course) as an IA.

Cheers,
Kelly!

#13 of 15 Ryan Peddle

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Posted March 09 2006 - 11:16 AM

Here are a few things that I know I would like to know:

-day of sale and price in CAD
-which resolutions through connections
-what comes with the units (hdmi cable?)
-warranty
-any software included (ei demo discs)

#14 of 15 Gabriel.H

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Posted March 09 2006 - 02:24 PM

What I want to know is:

-type of connectors/outputs (ex. discrete 8ch sound out)
-sound formats

Everything else has already been mentioned that I would like to see.

#15 of 15 grahamWilliams

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Posted March 10 2006 - 04:13 AM

Alright everyone, I've compiled all of the questions and recommendations from here and DHC into a single document (it's a document just for my department, but I've listed the questions by poster name in order to give credit where it is due Posted Image ) and I'm going into the meeting in about an hour.

I've also fired this list of questions off to our traditional analysts so if there's anything there that they haven't thought of before, they'll be thinking about it now. I'll keep you posted. If anything else of relevance pops up, feel free to PM me and I'll get back to you.

Cheers and thanks again,

Graham