HD DVD Players and Watching TV on DVD - Wait or Buy Now?

Discussion in 'TV on DVD and Blu-ray' started by Doug^Ch, Jul 27, 2006.

  1. Doug^Ch

    Doug^Ch Second Unit

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    I'm not sure that this is the right forum for this post, but since it concerns getting the ultimate pleasure out of watching TV on DVD, I posted it here. I've been following the threads on the new high definition dvd players here at HTF. It clearly looks to me from what I've read that the Toshiba HD A1 is a clear winner early on in this race. I have been within millimeters of hitting the buy now button for this player at Amazon. Here is my dilemma: 98% of what I watch is TV on DVD. I almost never watch a movie; I find I just love the slow unfolding of the story and character development of television shows as opposed the short story approach to movies. That being said I still want to watch what I have in the best quality possible. What I need to know is will this player with its supposed great up-conversion of standard DVDs greatly improve the picture quality of typical TV on DVD sets. Most people are raving about what it will do for standard movies on DVD.

    The next thing that is holding me back from buying the player now is how long before we start seeing the first releases of TV on DVD in this new format. Right now with the possible exception of Serenity, there is absolutely nothing out there that I am interested in seeing. Are TV on DVD releases on the horizon for release in the HDVD format? Any advice on whether I should buy now or wait, keeping in mind my viewing preferences, would be appreciated.
     
  2. TravisR

    TravisR Studio Mogul

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    Personally if you don't watch that many movies, I would just wait for better and less expensive players and high def DVDs of TV shows to become available over the next couple of years instead of buying one now.
     
  3. Gord Lacey

    Gord Lacey Cinematographer

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    I'm with Travis on this. I'd love to run out and buy a player, but there's nothing I want to watch on it, so I'm waiting. I expect we'll hear about some TV-DVD releases coming to HD-DVD before the end of the year, but it may not be something you're interested in owning. It may be a year before something is released that you really want, and by then the prices should be a bit lower so you'll be able to pick up a player and some sets for the same price as the player is selling for now.

    Gord
     
  4. Doug^Ch

    Doug^Ch Second Unit

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    Thanks Travis and Gord for the advice. I guess I will wait for something that I really want to see on TV on DVD to show up in the new format before I buy the new player. To ensure that I hold myself to it, I will stop reading all those giddy posts from the Toshiba HD A1 owners.
     
  5. Matt Hough

    Matt Hough Executive Producer
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    Well, there are upconversion DVD players out there that make TV-DVDs look wonderful (which I'm assuming is the same basic quality you'd get from a Toshiba HD-DVD player in upconversion mode), and these upcomversion players are much cheaper than the Toshiba HD-unit.

    I know the TV series I watch on my Panasonic upconversion equipment (CSI, MEDIUM, FRIENDS, among others) look fantastic. The enhanced shows like the CSIs look especially great.
     
  6. MatthewA

    MatthewA Lead Actor

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    I don't own an HDTV, an HD-DVD player, or a Blu-Ray player.

    With TV shows on HD-DVD, videotaped shows (which make up a good chunk of my TV-DVD collection) will have no increase in picture quality but will benefit from less space being used in HDDVD and Blu-Ray, so unless they release entire series at once, uncut, with buttloads of extras of these shows I don't see myself rebuying them. This would be better than trying to create fake HD versions. Can the VC-1 codec even be used with SD material?

    For filmed shows in the last 20 years, they will need to go back to the original film elements. Unfortunately this may mean re-doing special effects, matte shots, and credits. For shows with little special effects it won't be so bad.

    And even for filmed shows, will they bother to remaster them and, if necessary, restore them? Some episodes of The Waltons, for instance, look like someone dragged the film elements across Walton's Mountain and then transferred them to video. Compare this to other filmed shows from the same era, such as The Mary Tyler Moore Show, or even restored older shows such as I Love Lucy; the difference is startling.
     
  7. Bill>Moore

    Bill>Moore Second Unit

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    I'm in pretty much the same boat. The shows I own that were shot on video probably won't ever look better than they do now. Most of the shows I own on DVD already look great on my HDTV and I probably watch them more on my computer when I'm traveling (which is about 15 days out of the month). So there's no need to buy a new player just yet. When there are more releases out and the price of the players come down, I'll probably pick up a player. Even then, there would have to be a really outstanding reason for me to re-purchase any show I currently own on DVD.
     
  8. MatthewA

    MatthewA Lead Actor

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    Don't get me wrong; I think less space and greater picture quality would be a great reason to repurchase if the price was right.
     
  9. Buddy I

    Buddy I Agent

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    Does anyone have any ideas on how many episodes of a half hour and an hour TV series studios will cram onto one disc including bonus features? I think if both sides of a single disc is used, that studios can fit an entire 22 episode 22 minute TV series on one disc with maybe a few bonus features. I may be over estimating a disc's compacity, but it's just a guess. I'm wondering about this because it would save on production costs and save room on a collector's shelf.
     
  10. TravisR

    TravisR Studio Mogul

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    My guess is that studios will want to make it look like the consumer is getting more and some (but not all) sets will have multiple discs even if it can all fit on one disc. Obviously that's just a total guess on my part though.
     
  11. Jonny P

    Jonny P Supporting Actor

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    I don't own an HDTV or HD-DVD or Blu Ray player.

    I've been waiting for prices on sets to go down.

    Obviously, there are some very good prices in CRT (the more traditional tube type) monitors, but I'd love something that is plasma or LCD.

    At this point, I am waiting for my traditional 30 some inch traditional Sharp TV that I purchased 5 years ago to die first.

    I want a 16:9 hi-def set someday, but frankly there isn't enough content to make me that interested.
     

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