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HD player competition out in full force

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12 replies to this topic

#1 of 13 OFFLINE   MarioMon



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Posted April 13 2006 - 03:36 AM

Just checked Best Buy Canada's website and the Toshiba HD DVD Player (HD-A1) is retailing for $699.99 while the Samsung Blu-Ray Disc Player (BD-P1000) is going for $1299.99. All prices are in Canadian loonies. Toshiba is certainly being aggressive and the pricing disparity is huge to say the least. How these two players compare in image quality output and features remains to be seen but I'm surprised at how big the pricing is. The average buyer out there will look at prices and wonder WTF! It's starting to feel like the VHS-Beta war all over again.

#2 of 13 OFFLINE   Ron-P



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Posted April 13 2006 - 03:45 AM

Pre-ordered my Toshiba from Best Buy for $499 here in the states. It's set to be on my door step in a week (4/20). The email this morning said it will be in the store this Saturday, I'll be in there just to see, if so, I'll pick one up and cancel my pre-order.
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#3 of 13 OFFLINE   Greg T

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Posted April 13 2006 - 05:32 AM

Marioman, you could not be more wrong imo, the average consumer will laugh at 699.00 and buy a 99.00 or less upscaling player, they do not have a high def display, and are not about to buy movies that will probably list for more than 40.00 in Canada. Average Canadian consumers are no different than average U.S. consumers....who also will absolutely not be buying into hi res video on either format. To put this in perspective, there are over 10million sa-cd players and most have never heard of it. There are 10k hd dvd players and they should have sold out during the first week of pre-sale...easily....if most A/V enthusiast planned on jumping right in. People buying into either format...are not average, and should be more worried about these formats being more than nitchie...because there starting as much lessor known formats than sa-cd and dvd-a.

#4 of 13 OFFLINE   RobertR


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Posted April 13 2006 - 05:41 AM

It depends what is meant by “the average buyer”. If one means “the average man on the street”, no, he won’t be buying into hidef for now. But if “the average buyer” means “the average early adopter interested in hidef”, then I don’t see why a big price difference wouldn’t matter. “Early adopter” doesn’t mean “someone who cares nothing about price”.

#5 of 13 OFFLINE   Marko Berg

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Posted April 13 2006 - 06:54 AM

I'm not sure such a creature exists.

#6 of 13 OFFLINE   Ed St. Clair

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Posted April 13 2006 - 07:10 PM

This is off topic, I'll try to bring it back;
Well, Tosh would like that and Sony would not. I say the heck with both of them. Buy a uni from any other manufacture, butt S&T!!! Some of you can not wait a year, I know. However, if your dollars go directly to Sony or Tosh, you are directly funding this HD war on the consumer. Yes, I hope to one day indirectly fund both warring factions. Just, that will be an equal payment to both, therefore not funding one or the other to win at the expense (literally) of my fellow consumers.
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HD should be for EVERYONE!

#7 of 13 OFFLINE   MarioMon



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Posted April 14 2006 - 10:10 AM

My definition of the "average buyer" is one who already has put out some cash for a 40"+ large screen TV. These people will be buying a HD player just like they bought a DVD player, a PVR, or subscribed to HD cable. HD will have early buyers for sure, but my original point was that the price disparity of the two players I mentioned, even for early adopters, is a HUGE difference. Many early adopters will invariably be looking at image quality much more so than the "average consumer" and will then factor in the price difference. Even Walmart shoppers will have to pay out several hundred dollars for a HD player and Walmart will very likely sell out fast. IMO it will be sometime before we see a sub $100 player. As long as the volume of software availability picks up speed, one of the two formats will gather a larger following than the other and pricing may end up playing the same role in defining the winning format as it did with VHS and Beta.

#8 of 13 OFFLINE   Shawn Perron

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Posted April 14 2006 - 11:44 AM

Unfortunately the "average buyer" doesn't even have an HDTV. This will change in a few years, but for the moment the "average buyer" is probably using a DVD player that cost less then $100, and I highly doubt the "average buyer" even knows what component video is to even be running in 480p. I'd go one step further and say the "average buyer" may not even have thier DVD player set to output in 16:9 to match the aspect ratio of thier widescreen TV. I found this out the hard way when I went to my wife's parent's house and thier new 57" widescreen HDTV set was running with a composite connection in 4:3 mode. It had been like this for a year, and they just lived with the fact that everyone was really short. You should have seen a 2.35:1 movie running in what appeared to be a 3.5:1 aspect ratio. There is a tremendous amount of simplification and education to be done before HDTV is ready for the masses to use. Atleast when we firmly move into the HD era, there will only be a 1.78:1 going into the TV. Also HDMI carrying both video and audio should make things much simpler. As to the initial pricing of the formats, it really won't matter until sometime next year when consumer interest should begin to really begin to pick up. If both formats only move 100-200k units this year, how much they cost is not even really a factor. Pricing things agressively is only really effective when demand is strong enough to push sales. Next year, when hopefully atleast 1 million players will be sold, the pricing will become more of an issue.

#9 of 13 OFFLINE   Ryan-G


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Posted April 14 2006 - 08:27 PM

I agree with Shawn, alot has been made of the pricing on the various Players, but the only real market that High-Def can impact the "Average" Person is the people who watch movies on their computers. That's the only group with 100% penetration for displays capable of High-Def. Right now, all that matters for penetration in that market is the pricing on HD Drives, which from what I've heard the Blu-Ray ones will MSRP at 500$, haven't heard what the HD-DVD ones will MSRP at. Biggest influence on how this plays out is the "Watching movies on the computer" Market is predominantly college students, who are generally 18-25, who are significantly more familiar with Sony than they are Toshiba. Of course, even this segment is going to be held back if Vista and HDMI are requirements for High-Def on the computer.

#10 of 13 OFFLINE   Eric_Connelly


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Posted April 15 2006 - 05:59 AM

I am not the average buyer. I have over 15K invested in our TV watching experience. However I am not going to run and jump at $700 much less $1200 when I know in a year its going to be less than that. HD DVD prices will fall much faster than regular DVD players. Alot of the components are the same. Its like when DVD Writers came out, nearly identical machines to CD burners but look at the prices. They will fall and I'll get in line then. I'd rather upgrade the audio than spend 700-1200 on a DVD player. Voom tried to sell HD at $800 investment, look where they ended up. I think you'll see prices drop rapidly.

#11 of 13 OFFLINE   Peter Overduin

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Posted April 15 2006 - 06:39 AM

When the first dvd players came to market, I grabbed the first one I could get my hands on, which at that time was the DVD500 (i think) from Pioneer, and paid almost 800 bucks CAD for it.

Given that the first generation of HD-DVD players from Toshiba arent even capable of taking full advantage of the hi def format specs, I'll pass.

I agree too, that because we arent talking one format, but two, the competition will by definition result in rapidly decreasing prices and by Fall i'll be picking up blu ray and hd dvd players for half the price.

For the record, I consider myself an avid HT enthusiast. I have a dedicated 23 x 11.5 ft HT room, a 60" Sony Grand Wega (2005), all Denon hardware (7.1) and Paradigm speaker system. Monster cable all around and 3 separate breakers to power it all, with all of that on a UPS system so when the power goes out..my HT system doesnt! Posted Image

Given all the controversy of both formats and the way I am being screwed as a customer by a pointles format war, neither are worthy at this time of being validated by my investment.

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#12 of 13 OFFLINE   Johnny G

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Posted April 15 2006 - 08:53 AM

The hardest pill to swallow for the early adopters is when the 2nd generation come out cheaper & perform FAR superior to the 1st generation. Then those who buy 2nd generation have to swallow a pill just the same when 3rd generation machines come out. How does your DVD500 look now Peter?

#13 of 13 OFFLINE   Peter Overduin

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Posted April 16 2006 - 01:35 AM

sigh...gave up the ghost some time ago, but those early players were built like bookends for sure! Lots of disks wouldnt work properly; or at all; freezing up, etc., but what fun! I recall sending it back for no less than at least 3 firmware upgrades. I'm not wiling to endure the same frustrations with yet a new format so will pass on 1st generation players. I recall the early Sony DVD players had lots of issues as well with quite a number of disks and given both camp's hurry to get stuff out there, have little doubt that a number of issues will surface again. I look forward to the first reviews of both formats, from both a hardware and software perspective.

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