Sony releasing BR PC Drive in July

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by Ryan-G, Jul 19, 2006.

  1. Ryan-G

    Ryan-G Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2005
    Messages:
    621
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Just caught this, and surprised it didn't get brought up yet.

    Sony's releasing a BR PC Drive capable of reading/writing BR, DVD, and CD's at the end of July, including DL BR support. Pricing is $750 USD.

    Of course, it requires a HDCP compliant vid card and display, but for HTPCers and the few people who watch media on the PC, this is something interesting.

    No word yet on what software is being used for playback, or whether it's constrained without Vista. Not sure if the existing DVD playback software is capable of handling HD output, perhaps someone here knows if media player, Win-DVD, or PowerDVD is capable of the task?

    I never thought I'd say this, but I believe that so far Sony's pricing for a BR drive is the lowest. I think the other announced/released drives are still $1k+.
     
  2. Austan

    Austan Second Unit

    Joined:
    May 25, 2006
    Messages:
    283
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    They did hoard all the blu-ray lasers... and I'm pretty sure they are subsidizing it also...
     
  3. Jose Martinez

    Jose Martinez Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2003
    Messages:
    1,113
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0


    If you're referring to the BWU-100A, it's a piece of crap! It won't even be able to read copy-protected movies. ie can't watch it!!!

    http://www.dailytech.com/article.aspx?newsid=3744


    I think HD-DVD will be the eventual winner because of Sony's blunders
     
  4. Rob_Walton

    Rob_Walton Second Unit

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2004
    Messages:
    308
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Presumably this one must be targetted at the pro-sumer market: indy film makers, and pornographers. That's the only explaination I can think of for it being unable to play BD-ROMs.
     
  5. Lew Crippen

    Lew Crippen Executive Producer

    Joined:
    May 19, 2002
    Messages:
    12,060
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I assume that it is for commercial applications (and porn would fall in that category [​IMG]).

    There is a lot of demand for cost-effective storage (and this is not much money for commercial purposes). For these kinds of uses, the ability to play movies is not usuful.
     
  6. Kong Chang

    Kong Chang Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 1998
    Messages:
    1,632
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0

    Not really since they say it won't play now, but the feature of playability is manufactured onto the drive and has been disabled and all it takes is a firmware bios patch once more HDCP compliant hardware is more readily available. Manufacturers usually just disable a feature and enable it via patch/firmware later down the road. This is pretty much common knowledge of computer electronics.
     
  7. Brian-W

    Brian-W Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 1999
    Messages:
    1,149
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    0

    From Sony's site on the BWU-100A

    "Playback of commercial movies on Blu-ray Disc (BD-ROM) requires additional software/hardware not included with this product. Requires compatible high-definition display for high-definition playback. Playback of AACS protected media may require an HDCP compliant output and HDCP compliant display. Photo CD playback requires additional software not bundled with this drive."

    With the new Nvidia/ATI cards and an HDCP display, shouldn't be a problem.
     
  8. Kong Chang

    Kong Chang Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 1998
    Messages:
    1,632
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0

    Which means, Sony did manufacture the BR-ROM to play movies but had it disabled at the time of manufacturing. All they need to do is release a firmware upgrade to enable it once the HDCP compliant hardware becomes standardized (and so forth) in PCs. This also means, hackers also have a chance of breaking this disabling code and enabling the feature on the BR-ROM. We shall wait and see on this one.
     
  9. Jose Martinez

    Jose Martinez Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2003
    Messages:
    1,113
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    yeah I know that a firmware update is all that's needed to get the drive to read copy-protected BR-discs but my point is that Sony, with all it's troubles in getting the PS3 released plus this, isn't helping them out in the high def war. It's also an incentive for hackers to work on a "workaround" to get BR discs to play without copy-protection. it's a lose-lose situation for sony
     
  10. Sam Davatchi

    Sam Davatchi Producer

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 1999
    Messages:
    3,150
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Where does it say that it's disabled? It says clearly that if you have an HDCP graphic card, an HDCP monitor and the software player, you should be perfectly able to watch blu-ray movies with it.
     
  11. Jose Martinez

    Jose Martinez Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2003
    Messages:
    1,113
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0


    Did you read the article? It was dated August 11, 2006. That description of the drive is from the specs when Sony announced the drive months ago.
     
  12. Ryan-G

    Ryan-G Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2005
    Messages:
    621
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0

    I think he may have read the original article I linked to, and missed the later link to the update another poster put up.

    The Sony drive has playback of BR disabled. Whether or not it can be re-enabled later, who knows. I know I wouldn't bet $750 on them re-enabling it. Plus, the reason they give is flimsy, disabling it on the drive serves no one, leaving it enabled but unable to play without HDCP makes sense. If they left it enabled but waiting for HDCP, at least they could've advertised it as "BR ready". As it stands now, it's a $750 method of backing up 25 gigs. Only problem with that is for $300 you can get a 250 gig hard drive or more, save money, and have an order of magnitude more space.

    IMO, there's another reason than the stated one for why it's disabled. Perhaps to prevent attempts to hack the media because I don't think there's any software available yet.
     
  13. Kong Chang

    Kong Chang Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 1998
    Messages:
    1,632
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I have no idea why Sony USA is doing this to BR-ROMs because the BR-ROMs in Japan work perfectly well playing blu-ray movies made in Japan as showcased in the Tokyo Electronics Fair (Sony had bunch of blu-ray movies being played off of computers with BR-ROMs).
     
  14. Brian-W

    Brian-W Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 1999
    Messages:
    1,149
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    0

    That was one article, and I wouldn't bet the farm on it. Not many users have HDCP compliant cards/monitors, so again, I'm taking that article with a grain of salt. Reviewers have been wrong plenty of times.

    As for the second comment, the Sony supports 50GB discs as well (read/write).
     
  15. Jose Martinez

    Jose Martinez Screenwriter

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2003
    Messages:
    1,113
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0

    http://www.cdfreaks.com/news/13803

    http://www.techamok.com/?pid=1359

    Vincent Bautista, Sony's product manager for data storage, told CNET.com.au that due to copy protection issues and lagging software development, the drive will only play user-recorded high-definition content from a digital camcorder, and not commercial movies released under the BD format.
     
  16. Jesse Blacklow

    Jesse Blacklow Cinematographer

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2002
    Messages:
    2,049
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Jose: Why you didn't quote the next two paragraphs, which say that it will play movies? The requirements are a HDCP-compliant card as well as software that can decrypt HDCP. The only problem is that currently there's only one solution, and it's OEM (or in his words "not a saleable item yet"). They even say that with these both in place, drives are "capable of playing commercial movies without issue."
     
  17. Sam Davatchi

    Sam Davatchi Producer

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 1999
    Messages:
    3,150
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    http://www.hdbeat.com/2006/08/17/son...-the-BWU-100A/

    I knew people who said something is disabled in this drive were wrong! [​IMG]
    Nothing is disabled in this PC drive and it's working perfectly. As I suspected, you need the software and the graphic card to be able to watch commercial blu-ray discs.
     
  18. Ed B

    Ed B Stunt Coordinator

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 1999
    Messages:
    66
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    The BD-DL media is releaed.

    Retail price of $48 per disc, at roughly $1/1G its not the most affordable storage option on the market. I just spent $90 for 400G HD for my photo, and multi-media backups.

    http://www.i4u.com/article6311.html
     
  19. Ryan-G

    Ryan-G Supporting Actor

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2005
    Messages:
    621
    Likes Received:
    1
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Well, the plot thickens a good bit.

    Seems the intention is to prevent HD-DVD/BR playback on a PC running a 32-bit operating system. Anything other than Vista-64 will not playback High-Def discs. So the "Software" Sony is waiting for is Vista-64, not a Player, and on some computers it'll never work. It's safe to assume at this point that HD-DVD will be the same, and is probably why there isn't a HD-DVD drive imminent despite it existing in Tosh's first player.

    http://www.dailytech.com/article.aspx?newsid=3922

    Only the newer models of Intel chips are 64 bit, AMD's been selling them for a while.

    Microsoft's in bed with both camps in order to sell more copies of Vista.

    We get some DRM at the OS level, and it's highly unlikely Linux users will get HD playback at all.

    I can run V-64 just fine, but I find this to be annoying.
     
  20. Sam Davatchi

    Sam Davatchi Producer

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 1999
    Messages:
    3,150
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    It's not true.
     

Share This Page