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Old 05-25-2006, 02:11 AM   #63  
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Join Date: May 2005
Location: Mass
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Originally Posted by strawberry
For all we know, that "some time in the future" may only be a few months from now. We only have the full spec sheet for the Samsung and the Sony as of right now, is that correct? There are BR players yet to be released this year from Pioneer, Panasonic, Philips, LG, Sharp and Mistsubishi, and a newer Samsung hybrid as well. We can speculate about what features they'll have, but we won't know until we know. Right now, we don't.
I haven't seen a spec sheet for the Pioneer yet, but even BR fans have been appalled that for the list price of $1,800.00 they are not including any HD decoders in their machine from what has been released. Mitsubishi is a HD-DVD camp mfg I believe, not a BR camp mfg. To my knowledge Sharp & Philips have not even announced a shipping date for a player yet. Panasonic has not released a spec sheet to my knowledge, but is DEFINATELY in the BR camp exclusively currently. BTW, panny unit will not play CDs, and neither will the Sony, but the Samsung will)

LG had a press release that they were pulling their BR player and concentrating on a universal player 2 months ago. I have heard rumor that they caved to pressure and ARE releasing a BR player now. Samsung announced the first ACTUAL BR player (delayed) release for I think 6/25/06 now, but have not commented on a hybrid player since the original press release.

Sony will release on 8/15/06 last I heard and again will not be able to play CDs.

Panasonic will release in mid September at a price of $1,200.00 if I remember correctly.

No info on WHEN Sharp or Philips will release a BD player, and Mits hasn't announced ANY player in either format to my knowledge.

Also, Denon, Yamaha, Harmon Kardon, et al have not even stated where they stand, but if they can make players at anywhere near 1/2 the cost, they could make inroads in market share with HD-DVD player.

Absolutely- I agree. Cost is definitely the major factor for Sony and Samsung leaving native decoding support for the new audio codecs out of their initial players. Cost is also HD-DVD's biggest advantage- and could well be the determining factor in this thing- I'm not shy about pointing this out. What's killing me is that these early A-1 adopters that have sprung up around here recently refuse to acknowledge the idea that the BR camp has things going for it as well. The BR camp has more studio muscle behind it, a lot more manufacturing support behind it, and, probably most importantly, brand recognition. Wait a few months until all of the BR manufacturers have players out in the marketplace. Look at the stand-alone player market and think of it in terms of advertising budget- Toshiba and Sanyo are basically going head-to-head with an 8-headed marketing monster, and they can't outspend them all. There's a real chance that this could end up meaning that a year from now we'll have a general public that's been much more exposed to BR than they have to HD-DVD. You may not think that this matters, but it does. When it comes to the big national brands, the ones that spend more on advertising tend to record better sales than the competition. It's not a hard and fast rule, but it is a very strong trend.
That is a good point about the COMBINED advertising muscle, but in my opinion, they will really need it when they are selling something for 2-3 times the money for virtually the same expected PQ, and initially less SQ. You did leave out MS, HP & Intel on the HD-DVD side of the advertising equation.

MS & Intel are no stranger to marketing finese and HUGE ad budgets in anyone's view. Do you have a Intel inside? HP is in both camps, but they might be just keeping their foot in the door with BR IMO. They are first and foremost a HUGE computer company (that actually makes many of their components) and they are moving to the side some of the biggest players are on (MS/Intel). You could say that Dell is the biggest PC mfg, but they are just the largest assembler/seller. They don't make anything themselves for the most part. They just rebadge their printers, etc. from other mfgs.

That's it- nothing more, nothing less. Doesn't mean that BR will win out, but it is something that Toshiba will have to find a way to overcome, much as the BR camp will have to find a way to get people to pay for their more expensive technology vs. that of HD-DVD, or to even take the leap up from standard DVD.
TBD - nuff said here, except if BR won quickly or never had a competitor, they would either be subsidizing less or not at all, the additional mfg costs of the movie discs on their format. They do not have the cash from reading their financials to sustain this for very long, especially being a publically traded company with investors. BD fans should thank Toshiba for this war because at the least they will be saving money because of it, just like HD-DVD fans are.

I agree with you that not many people can benefit from 1080p output right now- I just don't think that any more people can benefit from the new audio codecs- not without making serious upgrades to their speaker systems and amps. That may not be the case for you, but you're the exception to a trend. The same could be said for someone who just spent a ton of money on an HD display that accepts 1080p 24 input.
I do not have a very amazing system (compared to many) as you can see from my signature, but I like it a lot. I care MORE about the audio myself which is why I have had a decent HT sound system for YEARS before I even got a HDTV. I bet there are many times more people with a HT sound system than people with a HDTV at this point. The majority are probably not as "decent" as mine, but they WILL be good enough to hear a difference in SQ with the HD audio formats included in HD-DVD players.

My point is anyone who has a receiver that is 4 years old or newer CAN utilize these new HD audio formats with what they have NOW. Others can get a system that will utilize these HD audio formats with a new $400-600.00 system at todays prices. For BD players they have to spend (most likely) over $1,200.00 for a new receiver (WHEN THEY COME OUT) and that doesn't even count the cost of the speakers.

Let's do the math. Worst case scenario for HD-DVD in regards to HD audio formats being utilized at the cheapest prices is:

HD-DVD player - $ 500.00
1ST HT system..... 400.00
HDTV................... 900.00
Total cost........$1,800.00 to have it all in a COMPLETE entry level system.

This is worst case, but if they already have a HDTV & HT sound sustem under 5 years old the cost is only $500.00 to complete the system with State Of The Art sound formats.

Blu-ray worst case scenario for the same minimum system:

PS3 (min.needs to be HDMI model).. $ 600.00 Will be impossible to get at first, since the gamers will buy most units.
1st HT system (req. expensive rec.)$1600.00
HDTV.............................................. $ 900.00
Total minimum total system cost....$3100.00

That is a minimum system from scratch. I think the first year it will probably be hard to get a HD decoding HDMI 1.3 receiver for an extra $1,200.00 cost myself. It could be 2 years before the HD audio decoders make it into a $1,000.00 receiver with HDMI 1.3 IMO.

I also used the lowest announced price for a PS3 with HDMI which we all know would be required when the studios require it to get HD PQ. It doesn't make sense to save $100.00 and potentially lose the HD PQ if ICT gets activated. When the war is over it most likely WILL get turned on at the latest by the studios IMO.

You are looking at $1,300.00 (72%) MORE to build a minimum system from scratch with Blu-ray vs HD-DVD. Now if they already have the HDTV the increased cost of BR is 144% more vs HD-DVD.

If you use the cheapest REAL BD player to do the comparison you can add at least 45% more to that increased cost.

I know I am not ordinary [5 variously priced (3 cheapos for the kids) HT systems in my house], but I bet there are more HT sound systems than there are HDTVs in USA homes. A lot of them are double duty HT stereo systems since most people buy HT receivers over stereo receivers currently. I think if people who already have a HT sound system look at the costs of the better SQ they will find it harder to go with BD players. Do not forget that PS3 will not have analog outputs or decoders either. They will have the added demand of BD movie player customers to compete with the initial fanatic gamers who will pay any price for the PS3. This will make them VERY hard to find at their list prices IMO.

Remember, probably less than 25% of the PS3 will even be used on HDTVs, never mind those owners caring much about movies on the remaining 25%. I would think most people will not want to fight with Johnny over use of the only HDTV in the house when he wants to spend all day playing games with his PS3.
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