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Anyone else just a little bit scared about HD-DVD?


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34 replies to this topic

#21 of 35 Russell G

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Posted September 24 2002 - 11:07 AM

My concern with the HD-DVD is : How much better do we want the picture to get? There are a lot of posts on this forum about people (rightly) complaining about edge enhancement and other methods of encoding "ruining the film look" of the picture. Is more lines and a sharper image going to improve this? For me, I want a true theater experience in my home, which means a nice natural image.

Excuse my admitted ignorance on the technical side, but I think that a lot of the complaints about edge enhancement on Star Wars episode one is unwarranted. Episode One is a picture made using allot of digital matting (as shown in the documentary on the disk). The halos and "edges" that are a natural part of ANY matte shot are generally hidden by the projector in the theater, and brought out by digital transfer to DVD. Are we going to be satisfied when the picture is enhanced even more by HD-DVD, or well the format allow for a more natural picture? Will you buy a player based on a nice soft natural image, or are you going to be disappointed by not having sharp un-natural detail?

Maybe I've been reading to many Robert Harris posts, but this is my take on it. By all means correct me if (when!) I'm wrong!
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#22 of 35 Garrett Lundy

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Posted September 24 2002 - 11:08 AM

Quote:
I would like there to be some sort of stand-up or sign that could sit right in the front of every Circuit City, Best Buy, and video store in the nation. This stand-up would have a picture of a 2:35:1 widescreen picture on the left. On the right would be the full-frame version of the same picture.

The correct aspect ratio always go's on the right. People unconsciously put "good" on the right and "bad" on the left. I don't know why, thats just the way the brain works.

Anyway, I'm not too concerned with HD-DVD coming-out anytime soon, heres why

DVD was pretty-much released in 97 (maybe late 96, my memory fails me). For the first time people could use 100% of their televisions video capability. By this time, there was 100% NTSC-tv usage. But even so, there were still people using "ancient" televisions that need RF-connectors to attach components(DVD-player salesmen can back me up on this)!

HD-DVD even needs a HD-TV to work! (assuming it works like DVHS). There are still far more 4x3 tv's being manufactured than HD 16x9 being made today, and any trip to a "senior rest home" will show you that it can take 30 years for a TV to die!

My theory (about all my ramblings): A true HD-DVD, capable of maximizing the limits of HD-Tv, as much as DVD maximized Tv, will take another 15 years. HD-DVD, as the market standard, will be at least 20.

Thats my psychic prediction, and I'm stickin to it!
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#23 of 35 Dave H

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Posted September 24 2002 - 11:10 AM

Eventually, I am certain I will replace all my current DVDs with HD-DVD. I have about 140 DVDs and have been buying since Dec. '99. I would like to enjoy what I have for a few more years. Even with Sony's plans for the end of next year, I think it may be a few years before the prices and selection are reasonable. Hell, I am still 1-2 years away from buying an HDTV.

#24 of 35 Scott Wong

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Posted September 24 2002 - 05:16 PM

First, there's no way in Hell I'm just going to get rid of my 200+ DVD's. It's got to be backward compatible or as an earlier post mentioned, have the new HD-DVD player do some kind of upscaling. I don't have the slightest clue as to how that would work... but it would be a good selling tool.

I just don't quite see either how the quality is going to be *that* much better? How? Is it really all justified? Don't get me wrong, I am all for the best picture quality with the proper aspect ratio... but what kind of quality are we talking about? How much better is it all going to get?

There are people in this world clenching tightly to their VHS collection who *still* can't fathom the whole concept of DVD and widesceen advocacy. I used to be a sales rep. at a local A/V store here in Minnesota. You would not believe the amount of people who came into the store demanding the $59.99 Samsung 4-Head "HiFi" VCR in the Sunday sales ad as the "Hot Buy" of the week simply because "it's good enough..." Or how about people demanding the GE (yes, I said GE) 50-inch RPTV for $799. There are a lot of them out there. Lots and lots of these people.

It makes me wonder... who's the majority? I guess my point being these people are going to one day eventually (hopefully sooner than later) go out and splurge and buy a Mintek DVD player from Best Buy for $79.99 How in the world are they going to be sold on a concept like HD-DVD? Surely they'll see their Mintek player as something that does the job "good enough"...

...scary.

Scott.


#25 of 35 Eric_R_C

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Posted September 24 2002 - 06:27 PM

I might also add to facts to ponder.

1) DVD's had considerably better visual/audio quality (in most cases) than Laserdisc, at far cheaper prices.
1a) Also more convenient than LD's (size, flipping)
2) DVD came out during an economic boom, prompting home electronics sales.

These were two great reasons for most people to go out and buy DVD/Home theater systems. Although I hope HD-DVD will succeed, it will require some intertia from DVD. At least we have HD-VHS to raise the bar of video standards. HD-DVD would instantly become a distant runner-up if it used MPEG-4. HD-VHS, right now, is only about twice as much as DVD (thought the players are still pricey) and it records like a VCR. That's gonna be tough to beat.
Of course, most enthusiasts (like myself) were already sold on DVD when it was still on the drawing boards. We longed for DD/DTS soundtracks (impossible in VHS), Anamorphic video, Supplemental material, no flipping (eventually) and chapter selections.
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#26 of 35 John Berggren

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Posted September 25 2002 - 02:35 AM

I will continue to enjoy my DVDs until their HD-DVD counterparts are released. I know enough people will still have DVD that I'll have no problem weeding my collection as that happens.

I'll keep DVD titles that show no benefit from HD-DVD (older TV stuff, for instance) and titles that have bonus features not included on HD-DVDs. No doubt some will drop due to clearances or space.
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#27 of 35 DaViD Boulet

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Posted September 25 2002 - 02:46 AM

Quote:
Excuse my admitted ignorance on the technical side, but I think that a lot of the complaints about edge enhancement on Star Wars episode one is unwarranted. Episode One is a picture made using allot of digital matting (as shown in the documentary on the disk). The halos and "edges" that are a natural part of ANY matte shot are generally hidden by the projector in the theater, and brought out by digital transfer to DVD. Are we going to be satisfied when the picture is enhanced even more by HD-DVD, or well the format allow for a more natural picture? Will you buy a player based on a nice soft natural image, or are you going to be disappointed by not having sharp un-natural detail?

Russel,

Agreed that we want HD images to look "natural" and film like, but you're mistaken about the problems with SW Ep 1.

The EE is not something that was "hidden" by the prints in the theater. It's an artifact that was *introduced* during digital mastering for DVD. Indeed, the trailers on the disc show much more *real* vertical resolution and much less "ringing" or EE.

Trust me...watch it on a projector with a 100" screen and you'll see just how obvious it is that it's "ringing" that's been electronically applied during mastering and is NOT an artifact of MPEG compression or digital production of the film.

This is also not to say that THX meant to have it look this way on DVD. I think they goofed and were too ashamed to fess up when pushed (their continual denail of any problems with the transfer).

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#28 of 35 Eric_R_C

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Posted September 25 2002 - 05:50 AM

Here's an interesting EE test. If you look at the TPM trailer on the DVD, there is little or no EE at all. However, those same scenes in the actual movie (and this includes the Lucasfilm Logo) are full of EE. It is definitely NOT an MPEG artifact, and it is certainly not a NECESSARY product of mastering, either.
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#29 of 35 Dan Kaplan

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Posted September 25 2002 - 06:18 AM

Quote:
How is it that DVDs would ever be obsolete? Even if a new HD-DVD format is not backward-compatible, who cares? It's not like you have to throw your current DVD player away the day you get a new HD-DVD player. You can use both.
I think backward compatibility might be slightly less of a key issue than familiarity. VHS, CD, and Laserdisc each took a while to catch on, if at all. My thinking is because they were all new formats at the time. DVDs, while being a new format, were highly familiar to music listeners and computer users of the past 10+ years, so there was little familiarity inertia to overcome, and it gained mainstream awareness in maybe half the time of the others. That might also be a sign of our growing technological awareness, of course.

If the manufacturers build in backward compatibility, they will obviously improve the chances of HD-DVD catching on "rapidly." However, I believe the single biggest thing they can do to make the format catch on is to stick with the DVD/CD look, as that's what the average consumer is expecting.

As for the video quality, I'm not qualified to say ... yet. I'm still on a 32" 4:3 TV, with hopes to upgrade to a projector system before too long. On my system, most DVDs look quite good, but that's neither here nor there...

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#30 of 35 Jim_C

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Posted September 25 2002 - 09:05 AM

IMO, SD-DVD isn't going anywhere for a number of years so I don't worry too much about my current collection. When HD-DVD does come out the players will either be backwards compatible or I'll have to make room in the rack for one more box.

I only plan on buying my favorite DVD's on HD-DVD. The rest of the movies I own, the ones that fall into the 'pretty good movie' category, look and sound great in SD-DVD. Example: I'll buy LOTR in HD-DVD but I don't feel the need to upgrade my copy of The Thomas Crown Affair.

I'm really looking forward to HD-DVD so it can't come soon enough.
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#31 of 35 Neil Joseph

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Posted September 25 2002 - 09:23 AM

This will be just like any other upgrade that I hae made in the past and will be sure to make in the future. When HD comes, eventually (sooner than later), I will get my dream HD FPTV and upgrade my titles over a long time, starting with the ones I like the most. I can't say I look forward to doing that but if HD DVD comes tomorrow, I won't regret it.
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#32 of 35 MarcVH

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Posted October 03 2002 - 04:37 AM

I'm not worried about HD-DVD for many of the reasons cited above -- after all, nobody expects CDs to be obsolete any time soon even though technically superior alternatives exist.

The other factor I have is that I don't expect to be an early adopter of HD-DVD because I consider it a given that, at first, HD-DVD will be screwed up somehow. It might be multiple incompatible versions, or how it is priced and marketed, or not allowing for digital outputs on players, or by having something like DIVX or other DRM enforcement. I don't know exactly how, but I just assume that the initial HD-DVD rollout will do something stupid.

#33 of 35 Mark Zimmer

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Posted October 03 2002 - 05:24 AM

Exactly. HDTV itself has been utterly screwed up by competing formats, copy protection issues and complete inability to get any significant programming on a regular basis. Why should HD-DVD be any different? The players are the same and the issues are the same. You may as well be nervous about the sun exploding or Halley's comet crashing into the planet.

#34 of 35 Scott Shanks

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Posted October 03 2002 - 06:10 AM

I can't wait. The sooner pan and scan goes out of my vocabulary the better.
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#35 of 35 Inspector Hammer!

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Posted October 03 2002 - 06:25 AM

I don't really fear HD-DVD, for me it's more of an ego problem. I hate the idea of being left behind in terms of what's the latest and best thing, and to tell you that HD isn't even anywhere near the stratosphere of possibility for me right now, or even the near future, would be the understatement of the decade.

It's going to be REMARKABLY frustrating to me to know that HD-DVD is out their and that I can't utilize it. Posted Image

Who knows though, I may win the powerball and all those worries would be over. Posted Image
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