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Your 1st DVD player vs. 1st Blu-ray player: How much and when did you buy?

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#1 of 48 OFFLINE   Mark Butler

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Posted October 02 2008 - 06:19 PM

I find it fascinating to read on many home theater websites and forums posts and opinions about the outrageous cost of Blu-ray players. It seems that many of the writers have forgotten the prices of DVD players when they first appeared in late 97 through 2001 (the early adopter through the early growth period). Not even taking into account inflation when comparing prices between the first DVD players and the first Blu-ray players it seems to me that the prices are more than comparable if not a little cheaper for a quality Blu-ray player compared to a quality DVD player when they are compared together at the the same point in time in the growth of each format. As we hit the two year mark for Blu-ray several players have been released and selling at the sub $300 dollar price point. So my hope is to try ask the members here to give the best answer as they can to the questions I posed in this thread in order to get a real world perspective on current Blu-ray player prices in comparison to the beginning of DVD players. I'll go first: Sept 9th 1999 Toshiba SD-2108 $299.99 (US Dollars) *still have receipt November 11th 2006 PlayStation 3 $549.99 (US Dollars) Thank you for your replies.
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#2 of 48 OFFLINE   Matt Hough

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Posted October 03 2008 - 01:20 AM

My first DVD player was a Panasonic bought in 1999 for $300+ (don't remember the exact figures), but remembering how much I paid for a top of the line Pioneer laserdisc player, the DVD player seemed cheap. I got my PS3 brand new off Ebay for $460.

#3 of 48 OFFLINE   Jason Seaver

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Posted October 03 2008 - 01:31 AM

First DVD player: Toshiba SD-2006, sometime in 1998, I think, for about $350. It was a floor model at the local Lechmere's going out of business sale. First Blu-ray player: That awful first Samsung model, March '07, for $500. And, for what it's worth, a Toshiba HD-A1 in August '06 for $450.
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#4 of 48 OFFLINE   Ed Moxley

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Posted October 03 2008 - 01:31 AM

Back in the 90s, I bought a Panasonic. After taxes, it was a little over $400. That player, and Panasonic items some friends had, is why I will not recommend Panasonic to anyone. I'll never own anything else from Panasonic.
Samsung HL61A750 (LED DLP)            Onkyo TX-SR805
Oppo BDP-83 Blu ray                                  Polk Audio LSi9
Polk Audio LSiC                                  Sony SS-MB100H
SVS PC12-NSD (Sub)                       ...

#5 of 48 OFFLINE   Brent Hutto

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Posted October 03 2008 - 01:52 AM

I believe the year was 2001, in September with some money my in-laws gave me for my birthday. It was whatever cheap Panasonic (non-progressive-scan, etc.) was on sale that week at Target. Somewhere in the $100's, maybe $139 or $119 or something like that. Hooked it up to a 27" Sony with no surround sound. The no-surround-sound lasted about two weeks, though. A year later when we got an HD Sony CRT the first Panny got upgraded to a progressive-scan RP91 for, IIRC, $229 on sale from some mail-order place. Or maybe it was $259. At any rate, that crummy little RP81 in all its flimsiness was our only DVD player for nearly six years and kept right on ticking up until the end. Admittedly it had to try twice or thrice to load certain disks lately but it always managed to get 'em read. First Blu-Ray was a week ago tomorrow. Panasonic BD30 from Best Buy (locally) for $319. Of course predictably about two days later the Sony S350 gets marked down to $299 everywhere, even at the Target store near our house. So I no doubt overpaid for the now-obsolete BD30 but our new plasma TV is a Panasonic and I got such good service out of the old RP91 (BTW the BD30 has much better build quality). Probably should have waited a month or two and snapped up a BD35 for 300 bucks or so but I'm not much good at waiting for the Next Big Thing.

#6 of 48 OFFLINE   drobbins



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Posted October 03 2008 - 02:25 AM

My first DVD Player was a PS2 I bought when they first came out in 2000. I used it for both gaming and my DVD player until 2005 when I built my first theater. I don't remember exactly but I thought it was in the $200 - $300 range. I haven't jumped into Blu-Ray yet. If I do it will probably be a PS3. But in order to benefit from Blu-Ray, I would have to upgrade my receiver, projector and maybe add 2 more speakers. So the total cost is more than just the player. I am still content with DVD so this will probably wait until the projector needs a new bulb. Then I could justify upgrading the projector.

#7 of 48 OFFLINE   Darren_N


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Posted October 03 2008 - 02:38 AM

First DVD player - Sony 530D for ~$300 from Best Buy in April 2000. Looking back, I could have gone cheaper with the 330D because I eventually got a receiver that decoded DD/DTS and didn't need the decoders in the 530. First Blu-Ray player - PS3 for $275 (after $150 credit for using the Sony credit card) in September 2008
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#8 of 48 OFFLINE   Clinton McClure

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Posted October 03 2008 - 03:26 AM

I think my first DVD player was a Toshiba SD-2700 which I bought in 1998 for about $250. A few years later I upgraded to a Toshiba SD-5109 for $499 which could do everything right out of the box with no firmware upgrades and only refused to play two or three discs out of thousands. My first BD player was a Sony BDP-S300 last week for $250 which had to have new firmware right out of the box and has frozen twice trying to play SD-DVDs and had to be rebooted. I didn't have a problem paying more money for a DVD player (or receiver, amp and speakers) 10 years ago because the economy was in much better shape and I was making a lot more money. Now I have to be a lot more discrete about my purchases and the cost/value factor has radically changed since then.

#9 of 48 OFFLINE   Martino


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Posted October 03 2008 - 03:52 AM

My First DVD player was a Laser Disk/DVD combo player – since I had a ton of laser disks…it cost me around $500.00 The DVD portion was full of bugs – lots of freezes and pixilization problems – but the laser disk part worked well and even played both sides. I later upgraded the DVD player to a newer – Panasonic progressive model – this one was around $300.00 and had none of the freezes or other problems that my combo player had. I’ve been looking at getting a BD player – but it still seems like they don’t have the glitches ironed out yet. From the start of the format war – it seemed like BD was behind in the reliability curve from HD-DVD. With reports like this, it seems like they still don’t have it all together. – I’m waiting for a generation of players where the firmware works correctly out of the box – so I keep monitoring this site to see when this will happen. I’m glad the prices are coming down – now the reliability just has to go up. I don’t want to be a BD firmware tester…. “My first BD player was a Sony BDP-S300 last week for $250 which had to have new firmware right out of the box and has frozen twice trying to play SD-DVDs and had to be rebooted.”

#10 of 48 OFFLINE   PaulDA



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Posted October 03 2008 - 04:04 AM

My first DVD player (sadly, stolen 18 months later) was the Panasonic DVD-A7. Built like a tank and played DVD-A (which is why I wanted it--I was tackling the audio portion of my system first and, at the time, DVD-A seemed like it was going to do well), I paid 700$CDN plus taxes (about 845$CDN in today's dollars--the Canadian dollar was significantly weaker in 2000 than it is today, so there were no sub-500$ name brand DVD players easily available in Canada at that time). It was not prog scan (didn't care as my TV was not able to benefit from that feature) but it sounded great and it looked fine on my SD CRT. My first BD player is a PS3. I got it last month for my birthday. It is the "older" 80 GB model (the one that is SACD compatible). I wanted the SACD capability, so I had to get the machine bundled with MGS4--came to 499$CDN (plus taxes). While I've yet to exploit its "media centre" capabilities (barely have time to watch movies on it), I consider it a good purchase because of its versatility.
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#11 of 48 OFFLINE   Brent Hutto

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Posted October 03 2008 - 05:53 AM

I think with the current and ongoing price reductions to get under what seems to me like the "magic" $300 level this is either a terrible time or a perfect time to be asking this question ;-) If you had asked this question a month ago there would be more truth to the "outrageous cost" characterisation. Or if you'd waited until a while after the upcoming holidays I think everyone will be taking for granted that Blu-Ray is now reasonably priced (although we're still a ways from cheap players at Wal-Mart for under 100 bucks). My point being...once the choices include the '350 model Sony and the Real Soon Now BD35 from Panasonic each for somewhere in the high $200's and both of them more featured and more reliable than some models from the recent past...doesn't it get hard to complain? Unless of course you're still smarting from the erstwhile Format Wars!

#12 of 48 OFFLINE   nolesrule



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Posted October 03 2008 - 06:11 AM

I'll be buying into Blu-Ray this holiday season, mainly because I finally attained spouse approval since the price point has become more appealing. My first DVD player was an open-box Panasonic DVD-A100 in early 1998 for $450. The player was still working perfectly when I sold it at a garage sale about a year ago.

#13 of 48 OFFLINE   Matt Butler

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Posted October 03 2008 - 06:27 AM

My first DVD player was a Pioneer DVD/LD combo in Oct 97 for $700 approx. First Blu was bought in Dec 07 for $400; Sony BD 301
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#14 of 48 OFFLINE   Al_S


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Posted October 03 2008 - 08:18 AM

My first DVD player was a Sony that I purchased new from BB for $600. My first Blu-Ray player was a 20GB PS3 that I picked up from Audiogon for $350. This PS3 is great and plays every disk I throw at it!

#15 of 48 OFFLINE   Scott-S


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Posted October 03 2008 - 08:21 AM

This has been a very informative thread. I had always had a gut feeling that this is true, but it is nice to see data that shows that BR players are actually less expensive at this point in the formats life than DVD player were.

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#16 of 48 OFFLINE   ManW_TheUncool



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Posted October 03 2008 - 08:27 AM

My first DVD player was a Toshiba SD-2008 (IIRC) for $300 from 800.com -- one of the many popular etailers that succumbed to the dot.com crash -- back around October 1998.

My first (and only, so far) BD player is the PS3/40GB for ~$300 from Sony's own SonyStyle store (after $100 back w/ their credit card offer) in the last week of 2007.

Personally, I find $300 to be a good entry point for a full featured, reliable player in a new format, and the PS3 is actually (considerably) *more* than that even though I'm not a gamer anymore -- well, I suppose it could use an affordable, full featured IR-to-BT option, if not built-in, which is probably the one key thing missing, but all the other (non-BD) features/functionalities easily make up for that as far as I'm concerned. Posted Image

Someone also mentioned about diffs in income due to the economy and such. While I'm sure very many (maybe most) folks are indeed pinched by the current economic condition (compared to a few years ago anyway), I don't think everyone is actually making less now than ~10 years ago when DVD was at its infancy/early adopter phase. Certainly, I (and many others in my profession) am making a good deal more now than back then -- and no, I'm not one of those who make top $$$ in my field. All this stuff is anecdotal and heavily dependent on your area of work, etc. of course, so YMMV.


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#17 of 48 OFFLINE   TravisR


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Posted October 03 2008 - 08:36 AM

Yep. I paid $600 for my first DVD player in mid-1998 and about $275 for my first Blu-ray player in the middle of this year. Of course, people will still say that if player prices don't drop to $50 by Christmas, Blu-ray is doomed. Posted Image

#18 of 48 OFFLINE   Bryan X

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Posted October 03 2008 - 10:32 AM

November 2, 1998 Sony DVP-S300 for $478.87 November 5, 2007 Toshiba HD-A3 for $199.99 August 9, 2008 Sony BDP-S350 for $399.99

#19 of 48 OFFLINE   Scott Kriefall

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Posted October 03 2008 - 11:21 AM

My first DVD player was a Panasonic DVD-A300 purchased in May(?) 1997 for $700 (that was cheap at the time!). First Blu-ray player... PS3 for $399.99, early 2008.

#20 of 48 OFFLINE   Chris S

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Posted October 03 2008 - 12:37 PM

First SD-DVD player was a RCA ??? - $599.99 in Sept 1997. First Blu-ray player PS3 - $549.99 in Nov 2006. Sold my original SD player to a friend in 2000 and the last time I saw him it was still working as a spare in their guest bedroom.
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