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AcesHighStudios

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The "masses" adopted DVD when they had to and they complained about those black bars on the top and bottom of their TV screens and wondered why were missing part of the picture.

The last VHS, "A History of Violence," was released on March 14, 2006 -- 10 years after the release of the first DVD. That is not quickly abandoning VHS.
 

John Dirk

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I think you seriously exxagerate the "the masses are idiots" characterization. The fact is that the mass market eagerly embraced DVD (the market penetration was huge), and quickly abandoned VHS.

I don't have objective data but, subjectively, I have to agree with @AcesHighStudios The masses didn't willingly "adopt DVD, it was shoved down their collective throats and it took some time. That's how most technological advances work. The masses are just that. Mortals. They want whatever works [simplicity] and have no real interest in technological evolution or true audio/video excellence unless it makes a device smaller or easier to manage.


Masses and Enthusiasts... Every field or subculture has both and they are always the same. The masses hardly even realize [and NEVER acknowledge] that the innovations they currently enjoy were ushered in and paid for by Enthusiasts. Enthusiasts are different and exist on a higher plane. We adopt new tech earlier and at our own risk so that others can benefit years later. We want the best we can reasonably afford, TODAY...

But even enthusiasts have to factor in WAF and overall cost.
 

JohnRice

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I think both of you are right about parts of the story, but you're both so interested in arguing about it, that you're refusing to see it. DVD caught on, but think back to how much was P&S, cause we can't have those black bars. That is, until 16x9 TVs became more common, then it got better. Does anyone remember the earthquake of [email protected]$^ when The Next Generation finally came out remastered on BR, and it was pillarboxed? A lot of people lost their minds complaining that it didn't fill the 16x9 frame. How many shows have been released on BR cropped/opened up, or are now broadcast that way? a LOT.

These days, people have gotten more familiar with some bars, but I know a lot of them who use the various zoom and stretch settings so they still don't get any black bars. I've pointed out to several how distorted or cropped the image was, and they do... not... care. They want to screen filled, at all times.

You both have valid points.
 

RobertR

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I don't have objective data but, subjectively, I have to agree with @AcesHighStudios The masses didn't willingly "adopt DVD, it was shoved down their collective throats and it took some time. That's how most technological advances work. The masses are just that. Mortals. They want whatever works [simplicity] and have no real interest in technological evolution or true audio/video excellence unless it makes a device smaller or easier to manage.
The "masses" don't buy a product because business "decrees" it. New Coke failed. The Midi skirt failed. Beta lost to VHS. The RCA videodisc failed. All despite the fact that business wanted to "shove things down their throat". CONSUMERS decide what succeeds or fails, NOT business.
 

John Dirk

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The "masses" don't buy a product because business "decrees" it. New Coke failed. The Midi skirt failed. Beta lost to VHS. The RCA videodisc failed. All despite the fact that business wanted to "shove things down their throat". CONSUMERS decide what succeeds or fails, NOT business.

I don't disagree with anything you've said here but your tone could have been a bit more subdued. :) Let's not go there. If I've misconstrued then apologies up front. Anyway...

I only have personal knowledge and experience with your last example and it makes my point perfectly. BETA lost to VHS because the masses didn't care about it's technological superiority. At the time, VHS was easier to acquire and also easier to afford. That really is alI I was trying to say.
 

JohnRice

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I only have personal knowledge and experience with your last example and it makes my point perfectly. BETA lost to VHS because the masses didn't care about it's technological superiority. At the time, VHS was easier to acquire and also easier to afford. That really is alI I was trying to say.
I was thinking the same thing. As I recall, Betamax was superior, but only had Sony behind it, where VHS had a powerful consortium behind it. I agree with John that this is a good example of where an inferior product was shoved down everyone's throat.
 

Josh Steinberg

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I worked at a Blockbuster during the transition from VHS to DVD, and from my experienced point of view, consumers were eager to adopt it and it was a very happy for the benefits it offered over VHS: that it didn’t have to be rewound and that you could jump to any point, that the discs didn’t wear out like tapes could and couldn’t suffer a mechanical failure, and that it was priced to own from Day 1, where many VHS movies were not available for consumer purchase until much, much later after their initial release.

I think one of the reasons that BD didn’t catch on as widely as DVD was that it was essentially a picture/audio quality upgrade only - the biggest benefits, going from a linear format to a non-linear format, had already been provided in DVD.
 

RobertR

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I was thinking the same thing. As I recall, Betamax was superior, but only had Sony behind it, where VHS had a powerful consortium behind it. I agree with John that this is a good example of where an inferior product was shoved down everyone's throat.
VHS didn't win because it was a "powerful consortium". It won because JVC paid better attention to what people wanted.
 

RobertR

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I don't disagree with anything you've said here but your tone could have been a bit more subdued. :) Let's not go there. If I've misconstrued then apologies up front. Anyway...

I only have personal knowledge and experience with your last example and it makes my point perfectly. BETA lost to VHS because the masses didn't care about it's technological superiority. At the time, VHS was easier to acquire and also easier to afford. That really is alI I was trying to say.
It wasn't my intention to adopt a combative tone. I was mainly responding to the "the masses really preferred VHS over DVD" claim.
 

Colin Jacobson

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I worked at a Blockbuster during the transition from VHS to DVD, and from my experienced point of view, consumers were eager to adopt it and it was a very happy for the benefits it offered over VHS: that it didn’t have to be rewound and that you could jump to any point, that the discs didn’t wear out like tapes could and couldn’t suffer a mechanical failure, and that it was priced to own from Day 1, where many VHS movies were not available for consumer purchase until much, much later after their initial release.

I think one of the reasons that BD didn’t catch on as widely as DVD was that it was essentially a picture/audio quality upgrade only - the biggest benefits, going from a linear format to a non-linear format, had already been provided in DVD.

I've always said that VHS to DVD was revolutionary but DVD to BD was evolutionary.

I'm actually surprised BD's done as well as it has, given that it's not the huge leap than VHS to DVD was...
 

Colin Jacobson

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The "masses" adopted DVD when they had to and they complained about those black bars on the top and bottom of their TV screens and wondered why were missing part of the picture.

The last VHS, "A History of Violence," was released on March 14, 2006 -- 10 years after the release of the first DVD. That is not quickly abandoning VHS.

The last 8-track tape came out in 1988, well after the format had been completely ignored by the masses.

Formats don't die overnight - though with LD, it was close. DVD crushed LD really quickly.

VHS died more slowly, but 9 years from DVD's US debut to the complete eradication of VHS is pretty fast, IMO, especially given how huge VHS was in the 80s and 90s...
 

Thomas T

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The "masses" adopted DVD when they had to and they complained about those black bars on the top and bottom of their TV screens and wondered why were missing part of the picture.

Well I was part of the unwashed "masses" so you're hearing this from the horse's mouth. I didn't have to adopt DVD. I was actually more into laser discs than tape when DVD made its first appearance. I didn't complain about the black bars either. My transition to DVD was fairly quick when I saw the advantages to DVD including picture quality. My transition to blu ray from DVD was a little slower but when some films I wanted that were not on DVD but became available on blu ray (55 Days In Peking for example) I quickly moved to blu ray. I've not adopted to 4K and extremely likely I won't. The emphasis on 4K films tend to be on DC/Marvel blockbuster junk which I'm not interested in. I may change my mind if 4K releases of L'Avventura, Pillow Talk, The High And The Mighty, La Dolce Vita, All About Eve, Johnny Guitar, Nashville, Rebecca, Samson And Delilah, Marnie, Where The Boys Are and Rosemary's Baby become available.
 

Colin Jacobson

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Well I was part of the unwashed "masses" so you're hearing this from the horse's mouth. I didn't have to adopt DVD. I was actually more into laser discs than tape when DVD made its first appearance. I didn't complain about the black bars either. My transition to DVD was fairly quick when I saw the advantages to DVD including picture quality. My transition to blu ray from DVD was a little slower but when some films I wanted that were not on DVD but became available on blu ray (55 Days In Peking for example) I quickly moved to blu ray. I've not adopted to 4K and extremely likely I won't. The emphasis on 4K films tend to be on DC/Marvel blockbuster junk which I'm not interested in. I may change my mind if 4K releases of L'Avventura, Pillow Talk, The High And The Mighty, La Dolce Vita, All About Eve, Johnny Guitar, Nashville, Rebecca, Samson And Delilah, Marnie, Where The Boys Are and Rosemary's Baby become available.

Hate to ya, but if you were into LD, you weren't one of the "unwashed masses". That's being used to describe the VHS only crowd.

Besides, LD fans did have to adopt DVD - or abandon the hobby,. LD died a pretty quick death after DVD hit the shelves.
 

Scott Merryfield

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I don't have any friends that had 5.1 setup and switched to soundbars. I did have friends that switched from TV speakers to soundbars. Many of them either didn't have room for 5.1 speaker setup or the wife didn't want wires/cables attached to such a setup.

Those of us with 5.1 or more setups are probably less than 5%. If I had to guess it's 1%.
That's been my experience, too. Soundbars allow for an improvement in sound over the tiny speakers built into the TV without taking over the room with equipment and wiring.

I've had a surround system for probably close to 30 years, but have also contemplated buying a soundbar for the display in our master bedroom where we currently have just a 49inch 4K display, cable box, Roku 4K box and Sony BD player -- i.e. no sound system.

As for Atmos, while I wouldn't mind trying it out -- my Denon X3300W receiver supports the format -- there is just no way I am installing ceiling speakers in our family room where the main home theater resides. I honestly really pushed the limits for the room and wife factor when I added rear center speakers several years ago to go from a 5.1 to 7.1 setup (those speakers actually sit right in front of our fireplace). Whenever we install new carpeting the room, I am seriously considering dropping back down to a 5.1 setup, as the rear center speakers didn't add much to the audio experience in the room.
 

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