HD surmising and otherwise wondering...

Discussion in 'DVD' started by StevenFC, Mar 18, 2005.

  1. StevenFC

    StevenFC Second Unit

    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2003
    Messages:
    481
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    The regular stories about Hi-Def DVD has got me to wondering. Is it possible that the lack of quality product from so many studios has something to do with the imminent release of DVDs in Hi-Def? Are they investing more in the new tech and viewing standard DVD as not worth the investment? Is it likely that the studios that seem not to care much about the quality of their DVD releases will make a better effort with the new format? Or will they simply look at it as just another media?

    If they aren't just waiting for HD to take over and just don't care that much about their DVD releases, will they be caught with their pants down if consumers won't accept poor video quality in a supposedly superior video format? Will studios like Fox and Warners have a head start because of the restoration work that they have already done to their films?

    Do you think it will be necessary for the studios to come up with a different editorial model for HD-DVD production? It seems to me that it may be a hard sell to many to replace their current collection with the same exact release even if it is a better picture. After all the early adopters of course will be people like the HTF members--many of which have several hundred to several thousand DVDs.

    And let's not forget that for many DVD is a reference quality format already. It may be difficult for the studios to convince a collector that buying a fifty year old b&w movie is really worth it. Certainly there will be films that one will love to have in HD, but will that be enough?

    Let's face it, movies on a shiny plastic disc is no longer a novelty. And I think we're kidding ourselves if we deny that the cool factor was a big reason why DVD has done so well. I think that if they don't offer a good price point for HD right from the start, it may never be anything but another LD. I'm guessing that DVD and HD-DVD will not co-exist for long. This will only happen at the peril of HD, I think.
     
  2. JackKay

    JackKay Second Unit

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2004
    Messages:
    461
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    First off I want to see the end product, from both format sides, and I'm not talking about the demo they have now, but the movies I will be looking at in a B&M store to purchase.
    If High Def is what it is cracked up to be, then it should WOW us. I love the current Super Bit transfer of Lawrence of Arabia but to see it in a version I can play at 1080p, why not. It is the progression, the future of TV, but lets see if it is what it claims to be.

    I will take 4,5, or more years to 1.get the price down on players to current DVD levels, and 2. get the movie price down to a impulsive purchace price. Then we may see the saturation on HD movies and players that we currently have with SD DVDs. Digital TVs will come down in price.
    Much of the world is now changing over to DVD much like we did 3,4 years ago.
     
  3. Shawn Perron

    Shawn Perron Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2002
    Messages:
    500
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0


    Pricing has already been announced for HD-DVD movies, and the MSRP is exactly the same as thier DVD counterparts. Of course the street price may not match the current cut throat DVD sales prices on release day. I don't expect to be buying HD-DVD or Blu-Ray movies for the $14.88 my local walmart streets high profile DVDs at.

    As for the "Most people don't have a HDTV" arguement. I saw a good example of why this really doesn't matter just the other day. My stepfather was bragging to me about his new progressive scan dvd player, but he doesn't even have an EDTV nevermind a HDTV to take advantage of it. If HD-DVD/Blur-Ray is the hot thing to buy, people will buy it. Ignorance will render the lack of equipment a moot point. As long as they equip these players with a composite video out, people will be connecting them with RF converters at some point down the line. [​IMG]
     
  4. Aaron_Brez

    Aaron_Brez Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2000
    Messages:
    792
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I think content will sell Digital TVs, not the other way around. It is my opinion that the reason HDTVs haven't seen much penetration is that there's not enough high-def content out there.

    There are the regular broadcast channels in most markets, and some premium packages on satellite and digital cable, accompanied by expensive, incompatible set-top boxes... and that's it! And a grand total of 20 channels (if that!) is just not compelling for people used to 150+ channels of SDTV. It's not compelling to *me*, and I'm an avowed home theater enthusiast!

    If high-def movies were available right now, I'd be buying them and a display to play them on. Right now, it's not worth my cash just for a larger display to play my DVDs on, plus another a couple hundred bucks for a STB so I can get Lost and Trading Spaces in high-def.

    I think that if HD-DVD/Blu-Ray builds it, people will come.
     
  5. JackKay

    JackKay Second Unit

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2004
    Messages:
    461
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Aaron_Brez

    I think your right. It may be a big Christmas season for HDTVs.
     
  6. Ronald Epstein

    Ronald Epstein Founder
    Owner

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 1997
    Messages:
    49,048
    Likes Received:
    5,884
    Trophy Points:
    9,110
    Real Name:
    Ronald Epstein
    Yuh know, I have heard an accusation
    that studios are intentionally dumbing
    down their current product to promote
    Hi-Def and personally, I find that
    to be an amusing argument.

    Though the studios are obviously slowly
    moving towards the new format, I don't
    think at this point there's that much of
    a demand for policies to be changing.

    I think the degradation of quality you
    may be noticing with DVD product probably
    pertains to certain studios over others.
    I still see studios like WARNER, DISNEY
    and FOX releasing consistently grade-A
    product while studios like MGM and SONY
    are getting the most complaints.

    And yes, I think the studios that are
    going to fare the best with High Definition
    are those that have been spending money
    on restorations. Once again, expect WARNER,
    DISNEY and FOX to be amongst the top studios
    (though SONY had been involved in a lot of
    High-Def mastering since the late '90s).

    If you thought the demand for better
    picture was critical when we moved from
    VHS/LASERDISC to DVD, wait till Hi-Def.
    I do think that all of us will be merciless
    against against any studio that slaps a
    shitty print on a High-Definition disc and
    tries to sell it to us.

    While I picture a big HDTV Christmas along
    with the rest of you I do not think that
    High-Definition DVD is going to get off to
    a strong start -- not with two formats
    competing against each other. Most of the
    members of this forum have already expressed
    their desire to sit out the initial hooplah
    and wait until one format clearly wins.
     
  7. Aaron_Brez

    Aaron_Brez Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2000
    Messages:
    792
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Don't get me wrong, I'm somewhat pessimistic about the effect the HD-DVD/Blu-Ray format war will have in general.

    I just think that people who say that those formats are doomed to nichehood because of the low number of HDTVs out there have the cause and effect reversed.
     
  8. Heinz W

    Heinz W Second Unit

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2001
    Messages:
    415
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0

    Have you ever seen a progressive scanned DVD on a large HDTV? Amazing difference. Plain ol' 480p can look absolutely stunning, like The Incredibles for instance. And you lose all those horrible interlacing artifacts. Throw in an up-converting DVD player and you are in HT heaven. As a HT buff it was well worth the 2k I spent in October for my 51" HDTV.

    My TV has a built-in ATSC tuner so I only get HD programming OTA. Free. Well okay, the outdoor antenna, cable, and mounting hardware cost me a one time amount of about $180. I will not get satellite HD (I have SD DirecTV) until the new satellites are up later this year. Then there will be over a hundred HD channels to choose from via D*.

    If you love sports at all there is another reason to buy an HDTV. Watching football games in HD is awesome, to say the least. I also love watching 24 every Monday night in HD.

    If you just can't afford a new HDTV that's one thing, but if you can but won't "just to play DVDs on" then I think you're doing yourself a great disservice. HDTV prices are dropping, almost by the month. I don't really watch much regular TV aside from what I mentioned above. I bought my HDTV mostly "just to play (SD) DVD's on". Well, for now. [​IMG]

    JackKay mentioned Lawrence of Arabia. I believe the large format films, like Lawrence, 2001, and Ben-Hur to name a few will benefit the most noticeably from HD treatment. In fact, those films would be my "killer aps" for HD DVD or Blu-ray.

    I can't wait to see those films in hi-def.
     
  9. Jeff D Han

    Jeff D Han Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2003
    Messages:
    566
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I agree, Heinz, that DVD in progressive scan mode
    on HDTV is awesome (Shark Tale's picture was erection
    inducing). Also, I agree with your point about sports
    in hi-def. I've been watching NCAA tournament games
    all afternoon, and the picture blows away SD-DVD.
    Ron made a great point about how people will rip
    apart the new format (either HD-DVD or Blu-Ray) if
    the video is inferior to a hi-def broadcast. Some
    people like to look until they find fault with a
    SD-DVD, so these new formats better be flawless,
    or the formats won't even sell to the high-end
    users.
     
  10. Aaron_Brez

    Aaron_Brez Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2000
    Messages:
    792
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Heinz,

    I appreciate the attempted education, but I assure you: I've seen my share of DVDs on progressive systems, as well as upconverted DVDs. In fact, I've helped three friends set up and calibrate their HDTV systems. They're impressive, but not worth the upgrade for me; alas, sports is a non-starter for me as well. Even in the case of an "event" film, where I invite a bunch of folks over to watch a flick, I just borrow the DLP projector from work and run it through my PC, which does a bang-up job of scaling to the projector's native resolution. Now *that's* entertainment.

    There's just not enough reason for me to jump in, yet. My primary entertainment is movies, so high-def discs would change that-- were there no format war. But right now, there's not enough on TV which is broadcast in HD that I'm interested in, and the jump to progressive or even interpolated 1080i from DVD isn't enough to prioritize that $2000 over other household projects.

    If I didn't have kids, maybe. [​IMG]
     
  11. Dave H

    Dave H Producer

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2000
    Messages:
    5,579
    Likes Received:
    208
    Trophy Points:
    9,110

    Without a doubt. Yes, certain studios (and we all know who they are) were able to get away with this much too often on standard DVD. However, I will NOT purchase one single HD version that does not have a great transfer; I have no problem just holding on to the standard DVD version if they screw up the HD version somehow. I will be much pickier this time around.
     
  12. Stan Rozenfeld

    Stan Rozenfeld Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    May 27, 2000
    Messages:
    197
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    My brother and I both have Samsung 61" DLP TV and Denon 2910 DVD player, and we both agreed that if not for the format war, we would be buying high-def dvd players as soon as possible.

    The reason is we're not completely satisfied with sd-dvd quality. I want to second what Ron said about great transfers being absolutely mandatory for high def dvds. I hope that the studios are listening to us.

    But I also hope that the equipment manufacturers are listening to us, because there is no way am I going to be putting up with many of the artifacts that are generated by today's dvd players. In particular, I mean that high-def players better have great deinterlacing, etc. AND no macroblocking!

    As for how succesful high-def dvd will be, it will depend on a lot of things. It's not only a question of demand but also of marketting. Part of the problem with laserdiscs, dvd-audio and sacd is that they were never marketted properly, and no effort was made to make them consumer friendly. From initial indication, it looks like the studios and manufacturers will be very aggressive with pricing and marketting, which is very good.

    This format war is a double-edged sword. On the positive side, the competition has forced aggressive pricing, marketting and refinement of product (or at least standards) that we might not have had with only one standard from the beginning. But if it continues, it will cause confusion for consumers, and a lot of avid collectors of movies such as myself, will sit on the sidelines. I will buy a high def dvd player only, and as soon as, the format war is over.

    just my two cents,
    Stan
     

Share This Page