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HD on disc is one month old!


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#1 of 17 Ed St. Clair

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Posted May 17 2006 - 08:51 AM

Happy 1 month anniversary!

The story so far in the U.S.;
1. The Last Samurai (2004), Warner Bros. (Release date April 18, 2006)
2. Million Dollar Baby (2004), Warner Bros. (Release date April 18, 2006)
3. The Phantom of the Opera (2004), WB (Release date April 18, 2006)
4. Serenity (2005), Universal Studios (Release date April 18, 2006)
5. Apollo 13 (1995), Universal Studios (Release date April 25, 2006)
6. Doom: Unrated EE (2005), Universal Studios (Release date April 25, 2006)
7. GoodFellas (1990), Warner Bros. (Release date May 2, 2006)
8. Swordfish (2001), Warner Bros. (Release date May 2, 2006
9. Assault on Precinct 13 (2005), Universal (Release date May 9, 2006)
10. Cinderella Man (2005), Universal Studios (Release date May 9, 2006)
11. Jarhead (2005), Universal Studios (Release date May 9, 2006)
12. Rumor Has It (2005), Warner Bros. (Release date May 9, 2006) (Hybrid)
13. Training Day (2001), Warner Bros. (Release date May 9, 2006)
14. Full Metal Jacket (1987), Warner Bros. (Release date May 16, 2006)
15. Unforgiven (1992), Warner Bros. (Release date May 16, 2006)

Only 185 titles away from HD DVD promise of 200 in 2006!
Some good stuff, some questionable stuff.

Unforgiven ;-);
1. No; DTS, Dolby TrueHD, special features HD content (SF in SD)
2. No; DTS, Dolby TrueHD, special features HD content (SF in SD)
3. No; DTS, Dolby TrueHD (2ch. only), special features HD content (SF in SD)
4. No; DTS, Dolby TrueHD, special features HD content (SF in SD)
5. No; DTS, Dolby TrueHD, special features HD content (SF in SD)
6. No; DTS, Dolby TrueHD, special features HD content (SF in SD)
7. No; DTS, Dolby TrueHD, special features HD content (SF in SD)
8. No; DTS, Dolby TrueHD, special features HD content (SF in SD)
9. No; DTS, Dolby TrueHD, special features HD content (SF in SD)
10. No; DTS, Dolby TrueHD, special features HD content (SF in SD)
11. No; DTS, Dolby TrueHD, special features HD content (SF in SD)
12. No; DTS, Dolby TrueHD, special features HD content (SF in SD)
13. No; DTS, Dolby TrueHD, special features HD content (SF in SD)
14. No; DTS, Dolby TrueHD, special features HD content (SF in SD)
15. No; DTS, Dolby TrueHD, special features HD content (SF in SD)

Pluses;
1. Price & availability: good.
2. Slimmer case.
3. Transfers better than SD DVD's.

Overall, a light, however solid, showing for this admittedly weak release of HD on disc by HD DVD. Looking forward to the coming months!

Reviews;
http://www.dvd-basen......land=%&ok=go
Courtesy of the great DVDBasen!

Enjoy!

The obvious;
Where's Kong?
Movies are: "The Greatest Artform".
HD should be for EVERYONE!

#2 of 17 Paul_Scott

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Posted May 17 2006 - 08:58 AM

I expect some big guns to show up on 6/20

#3 of 17 Garrett Lundy

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Posted May 17 2006 - 09:47 AM

Is Phantom of the Opera encoded with TrueHd in 2-channel, or is the Toshiba player only able to decode 2-channel TrueHD?
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#4 of 17 Ed St. Clair

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Posted May 17 2006 - 03:58 PM

Garrett,
This link has the TrueHD at "English: Dolby Surround 5.1 MLP".
http://whv.warnerbro....4380&S=WBHiDef
However the A1 & XA1 with only HDMI 1.1 (or even if they had 1.2) can not do hidef multi channel soundtracks.
So the only players, with the only disc with MLP, can only be two channel.
Movies are: "The Greatest Artform".
HD should be for EVERYONE!

#5 of 17 Ed St. Clair

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Posted May 17 2006 - 04:14 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul_Scott
I expect some big guns to show up on 6/20
I expect some big guns to show up by 7/18! ;-)
And, by 8/18, and by 9/18...
It can only get better for HD on disc (fingers crossed & knock on wood)!
Movies are: "The Greatest Artform".
HD should be for EVERYONE!

#6 of 17 Rob_HD

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Posted May 18 2006 - 12:59 AM

I agree, overall the launch has been phenomenally good, save a few slight teething pains.

Overall the technology and the disc production has been ready and has proven itself very well.

However, BD-only studios have gotten impaled on all of Sony's unfulfilled promises of 50 G DL discs and advanced cideo codecs, which never materialised and STILL have no firm expected dates.

There will definitely be Studios that will modify their BD-only position - and soon.

#7 of 17 Frank@N

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Posted May 18 2006 - 04:08 AM

I'm still following HD-DVD developments closely, but I've now had some personal experience with the format that wasn't terribly remarkable.

My local BB has only been running the somewhat unremarkable HD-DVD demo disc for several week (although some of the trailers did look good).

Then last week they caved in and put on an actual movie disc (something they said previously was not allowed due to licencing issues).

The title was Apollo 13 and to be honest it didn't look that good (thought it was a DVD when I initially walked up to the display).

Specifically, it looked somewhat soft, skin tones were too red, and there was a lot more video noise than I expected.

I asked a BB guy nearby if they were using HDMI (yes) and started to talk about the problems with the image.

He agreed and said he thought maybe it was the display (a 10K 60 inch Pioneer plasma...OK).

There were a few people hanging around watching the movie and I'm almost sure that none of them knew or cared that this was the first disc-based HD playback format.

If anything, they probably thought it was a middle-of-the-road HD satellite feed.

Blu-ray also seems to be headed for indifference due to high player prices and ~25GB releases.

If the 360 launch was any indication, the PS3 probably won't be freely available till next summer (assuming you find one with HDMI).

It seems that both formats will get off to a very slow start and not be considered essential to the average person for years.

At some point in the future, when PS3s and 360s with built-in HD-DVD are freely available for under $500, the average person might start to care...maybe.

#8 of 17 Paul Padilla

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Posted May 18 2006 - 04:45 AM

I haven't plunged myself, but my boss did and he's been extremely pleased with HD projected on a 100" screen.

I'm not sure I would put too much stock in a Best Buy demo of any kind. They're attempting to provide more high end stuff these days, but the chances of that 60" plasma being calibrated correctly...if at all... are pretty slim. I'd look for a Tweeter or Ultimate Electronics (or whatever true AV store you have in your area) to get a more realistic experience.

Again...haven't seen it up close myself...just want you to have the chance to give it a fair shake. Posted Image
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#9 of 17 Steve Schaffer

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Posted May 18 2006 - 02:57 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Frank@N
I'm still following HD-DVD developments closely, but I've now had some personal experience with the format that wasn't terribly remarkable.

My local BB has only been running the somewhat unremarkable HD-DVD demo disc for several week (although some of the trailers did look good).

Then last week they caved in and put on an actual movie disc (something they said previously was not allowed due to licencing issues).

The title was Apollo 13 and to be honest it didn't look that good (thought it was a DVD when I initially walked up to the display).

Specifically, it looked somewhat soft, skin tones were too red, and there was a lot more video noise than I expected.

I asked a BB guy nearby if they were using HDMI (yes) and started to talk about the problems with the image.

He agreed and said he thought maybe it was the display (a 10K 60 inch Pioneer plasma...OK).

There were a few people hanging around watching the movie and I'm almost sure that none of them knew or cared that this was the first disc-based HD playback format.

If anything, they probably thought it was a middle-of-the-road HD satellite feed.

Blu-ray also seems to be headed for indifference due to high player prices and ~25GB releases.

If the 360 launch was any indication, the PS3 probably won't be freely available till next summer (assuming you find one with HDMI).

It seems that both formats will get off to a very slow start and not be considered essential to the average person for years.

At some point in the future, when PS3s and 360s with built-in HD-DVD are freely available for under $500, the average person might start to care...maybe.

Did you happen to spot which output resolution the HD-A1 you saw was set for? Chances are they had it set for 720p, as most Best Buy stores have done this. This is wrong, as the HD-A1 downconverts the 1080 on the disc to 480i then upconverts that to 720p when it's set to that output resolution.
A card in the box with the player advises to set the player's output to match the resolution on the disc, not that of the display device.

After at least 5 visits to BB over the last month to purchase discs for my HD-A1 I finally succeeded in getting one of the sales guys to dig out the remote from the back room and switch the player's output resolution to 1080i. Within a few minutes 2 more salesmen and a couple of managers were huddled around the display oohing and aawwing.
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#10 of 17 ChristopherDAC

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Posted May 18 2006 - 03:19 PM

Actually. I think it'll be 13 this week. Posted Image

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#11 of 17 Paul_Scott

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Posted May 18 2006 - 05:09 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Schaffer
Did you happen to spot which output resolution the HD-A1 you saw was set for? Chances are they had it set for 720p, as most Best Buy stores have done this. This is wrong, as the HD-A1 downconverts the 1080 on the disc to 480i then upconverts that to 720p when it's set to that output resolution.
A card in the box with the player advises to set the player's output to match the resolution on the disc, not that of the display device.

After at least 5 visits to BB over the last month to purchase discs for my HD-A1 I finally succeeded in getting one of the sales guys to dig out the remote from the back room and switch the player's output resolution to 1080i. Within a few minutes 2 more salesmen and a couple of managers were huddled around the display oohing and aawwing.

I'm willing to bet that's exactly what the problem was- because I did it myself the other night.
I forgot that the player doesn't default to the native res of the disc when you put it in, so I was watching Unforgiven at 480p and wondering why this title had gotten such an enthusiastic endorsement from so many people.
When i finally caught a clue and switched resolution to 1080i, i was fully and consistently dazzled.

I hope you get a chance to go back to the store Frank and give it another look. Just remember you need the remote to change the resolution.

#12 of 17 Juan C

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Posted May 18 2006 - 08:40 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed St. Clair
Only 185 titles away from HD DVD promise of 200 in 2006!

If they continue at 15 titles/month, they won't even reach 130 titles by the end of 2006. They really need to ramp up the releases.

#13 of 17 PeterTHX

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Posted May 18 2006 - 10:22 PM

Yeah. They didn't even come close to their promise of fifty (50) titles in 2005! Posted Image

Quote:
However the A1 & XA1 with only HDMI 1.1 (or even if they had 1.2) can not do hidef multi channel soundtracks

That's a limitation of the PLAYER, not HDMI 1.1.

The player can decode it to 5.1 analog-out, or to 5.1 PCM via HDMI 1.1, or output the core 5.1 Dolby Digital stream thru SPDIF or HDMI 1.1

All HDMI 1.3 does is enable native bitstream pass-thru to an external decoder.

Interestingly enough, Sony's PlayStation 3 will have all these options (the $499 analog/SPDIF and the $599 HDMI)

PS: Isn't "Assault on Precinct 13" in DTS as well?

#14 of 17 Frank@N

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Posted May 19 2006 - 02:22 AM

Next time I'm at BB I'll check what rez they're using.

It crossed my mind at the time, but to see the player closely I would have had to blocked the view of some on-lookers.

Why does the A1 scale twice to get to 720p? That seems really bad...

#15 of 17 Frank@N

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Posted May 21 2006 - 03:11 AM

Stopped back at BB and the player was showing 1080 & HDMI logos active.

The 61" plasma appears to be very high end, but it may be an older model from a few years ago.

I guess you'd have to A/B the same title & transfer on SD & HD on a well calibrated set to see what really happening.

#16 of 17 Ed St. Clair

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Posted May 21 2006 - 05:23 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterTHX
That's a limitation of the PLAYER, not HDMI 1.1.

The player can decode it to 5.1 analog-out, or to 5.1 PCM via HDMI 1.1, or output the core 5.1 Dolby Digital stream thru SPDIF or HDMI 1.1

All HDMI 1.3 does is enable native bitstream pass-thru to an external decoder.

Interestingly enough, Sony's PlayStation 3 will have all these options (the $499 analog/SPDIF and the $599 HDMI)
I still say 1.1 & 1.2 can't do multi-channel "lossless" (Dolby Digital TrueHD, MLP, & DTS HD Master). I'm still wondering if HiRez multi-channel lossless will be analog out when 1.3 (expect the specs in June) is here?
"HDMI 1.1 is capable of transporting all HD DVD and Blu-ray audio formats in native form except for losslessly compressed DTS HD Master and Dolby True HD, whose 768kHz “frame rates” exceed HDMI's 192kHz frame-rate capability, the HDMI licensing organization previously told TWICE."
^ http://www.twice.com.../CA6323699.html
HDMI "troubles" Secrets to Home Theater:
Problems Found with HDMI;
http://www.hometheat....0160#post20160
President of HDMI.org Responds to Questions;
http://www.hometheat....0930#post20930
Movies are: "The Greatest Artform".
HD should be for EVERYONE!

#17 of 17 ChristopherDAC

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Posted May 22 2006 - 04:36 AM

Nobody is arguing with you that HDMI 1.1 and 1.2 don't output the DD-THD or dtsHD bitstreams! The claim being made is that, if these audio formats are decoded to PCM, HDMI 1.1 or 1.2 can then pass along that PCM ; and that HDMI 1.3 is expected to incorporate bitstream transfer of these formats — if it did not, there would be little use for it.


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