High Def Forum
Thank you for visiting. This is our website archive. Please visit our main website by clicking the logo above.

Studios vary pricing for Blu-ray releases

Lee Stewart
04-25-2008, 06:14 AM
Studios vary pricing for Blu-ray releases

By Susanne Ault -- Video Business, 4/25/2008
APRIL 25 | Blu-ray Disc won the format war. Now one of the next challenges for studios, wholesalers and retailers is how to best price the product to quicken consumer adoption and preserve profits. Retailers report some shoppers balk at paying $5 to $10 more for Blu-ray than DVD. It’s an even harder sell with catalog, say store managers, as Blu-ray releases can be more than double the cost of their standard DVD counterparts, which might have been repriced several times.

The last thing retailers want, however, is studios sending Blu-ray prices into free-fall. Partly due to stiff retail competition, standard DVD value has slid to the point where stores are lucky to break even on new release sales.

Blu-ray pricing is all over the place. Sony Pictures Home Entertainment marked Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story at $43.95, $14 more than its standard two-disc special edition, while 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment listed Juno at $39.98, just $5 more than its high-end standard DVD. On standard DVD, new release pricing is more predictable—generally $28.99 to $29.99 for single-disc configurations and roughly $5 more for special editions.

“I don’t think studios have found the right price that works best yet on Blu-ray,” said Don Rood, director of business development at wholesaler VPD. “But I don’t think they will until the demand is there for the format. More consumers will need to adopt before studios can see what really is working. We just don’t want to see a race to the bottom.”

Going forward on Blu-ray, Barker hopes studios and retailers can balance their own revenue needs with dangling the right carrot for customer purchasing.

“You want to get more people involved, especially on the Blu-ray catalog side, where some of the stuff is a challenge,” he said. “You have to be really creative to get people to buy again on Blu-ray. They’ve already converted these titles from VHS to DVD. But I think we have to be careful not to race to the bottom very quickly.”

http://www.videobusiness.com/article/CA6554856.html

HD Goofnut
04-25-2008, 07:08 AM
I've said it before, but the studios are going to have to start listing their MSRPs for BDs down to the $24.99 area or they are just not going to take off like they want

Stew4HD
04-25-2008, 07:12 AM
IMO, BD sees itself as a superior product to DVD and wants to charge more for it. J6P doesn't see the difference.. discs are discs to them. Just cuz it looks better and sounds better, is it worth THAT much more?

Ok, BD apologist, start your excuses in 5, 4, 3, 2, 1... WAAAH!
:lol:

HD Goofnut
04-25-2008, 07:23 AM
IMO, BD sees itself as a superior product to DVD and wants to charge more for it. J6P doesn't see the difference.. discs are discs to them. Just cuz it looks better and sounds better, is it worth THAT much more?

Ok, BD apologist, start your excuses in 5, 4, 3, 2, 1... WAAAH!
:lol:

I think you are right on target David. Yeah, hatt, realist, and lancer will throw in a comment to support Blu-ray within minutes.

Stew4HD
04-25-2008, 07:34 AM
I think you are right on target David. Yeah, hatt, realist, and lancer will throw in a comment to support Blu-ray within minutes.

Don't get me wrong, I support BD, but I see the negatives within. I want better pricing for my wallet. I have already spent a ton on the players... gimme a break on the videos, dammit!

bruceames
04-25-2008, 07:39 AM
I've said it before, but the studios are going to have to start listing their MSRPs for BDs down to the $24.99 area or they are just not going to take off like they want

The price for most DVD new releases is still $29.95 MSRP, so I don't think that's going to happen soon.

Lee Stewart
04-25-2008, 07:44 AM
The price for most DVD new releases is still $29.95 MSRP, so I don't think that's going to happen soon.

It is not what the MSRP is. It is what the title sells for at the big B & M's like WM, BB and CC . . . which many times is 50% off the MSRP.(DVD)

MikeRox
04-25-2008, 09:10 AM
Thats controlled by retailers Lee, not studios. Until Blu-ray shifts more, there is no incentive to slash the prices at retail as it won't drive custom into stores the same way selling the latest release on DVD heavily discounted does.

PFC5
04-25-2008, 09:25 AM
Thats controlled by retailers Lee, not studios. Until Blu-ray shifts more, there is no incentive to slash the prices at retail as it won't drive custom into stores the same way selling the latest release on DVD heavily discounted does.

I am sure they are some sort of "incentives" for the heavy discounting by the retailers, but the discounting is to get people IN THE STORE so most is probably funded by the retailers as you said.

The current owners of HDM players are generally the bigger purchasers of movies AND other hardware in the stores I would imagine, so the effect of HDM sales would be greater per purchaser than it might be for SDM. This offers some offset I would imagine.

The problem is that with the HDM movie prices so much higher compared to SDM prices it is hard to get most people interested in HDM at this point. It is one thing to sell HD players for so much more to people who already have a SD player, but when they look at the HDM prices they just go back to looking at the much cheaper SD versions. Many may even think ahead that then they can only watch the new HDM in that ONE HD player they will have to buy.

The key to BD taking off is to get the player prices down fast and work on lowering the HD movie prices on a trailing level IMO. I think the price difference for movies cannot exceed $5.00 more at retail pricing for HD over SD.

D-X
04-25-2008, 09:46 AM
Fox can go to hell!

I am going to scream this at every chance I get till they change these dumbass high MSRP's!

Lee Stewart
04-25-2008, 09:48 AM
I am sure they are some sort of "incentives" for the heavy discounting by the retailers, but the discounting is to get people IN THE STORE so most is probably funded by the retailers as you said.

The current owners of HDM players are generally the bigger purchasers of movies AND other hardware in the stores I would imagine, so the effect of HDM sales would be greater per purchaser than it might be for SDM. This offers some offset I would imagine.

The problem is that with the HDM movie prices so much higher compared to SDM prices it is hard to get most people interested in HDM at this point. It is one thing to sell HD players for so much more to people who already have a SD player, but when they look at the HDM prices they just go back to looking at the much cheaper SD versions. Many may even think ahead that then they can only watch the new HDM in that ONE HD player they will have to buy.

The key to BD taking off is to get the player prices down fast and work on lowering the HD movie prices on a trailing level IMO. I think the price difference for movies cannot exceed $5.00 more at retail pricing for HD over SD.

But that isn't going to happen . . . get the player prices down fast. What happened to DVD is not going to happen to BD - let the Chinese make super cheap players.

He talked of a slow steady decline in the prices of Blu-ray players, which Sony now sells for $399 and up. He said that prices will fall to $299 for this Christmas and may be under $200 by the end of 2009. Sony isn’t the only one that makes Blu-ray players; Sharp, Samsung and other big electronics companies also compete with Sony.

Mr. Glasgow expressed hope that price levels wouldn’t collapse the way they did for DVD players. To protect against this, he said the Blu-ray Association, the group that controls the Blu-ray standard, has not licensed it to any manufacturers in China. (Cheap players from China were a large part of the collapse of the DVD player market.)

“Will there be Chinese players? Yes,” he said. “We don’t need to drive that and hand the technology over” any time soon, he said.

http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/03/05/a-299-sony-blu-ray-player-but-no-cheap-chinese-models/

PFC5
04-25-2008, 10:20 AM
But that isn't going to happen . . . get the player prices down fast. What happened to DVD is not going to happen to BD - let the Chinese make super cheap players.



http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/03/05/a-299-sony-blu-ray-player-but-no-cheap-chinese-models/

I know that is what the CE companies WANT, but they could just kill BD ever being mainstream if they continue with this business model. What they want to keep from happening is exactly what made SD DVD the record setting format it became.

If they do not work on lowering BD player prices faster, then they will just make it a sure thing that BD will remain niche IMO.

Lee Stewart
04-25-2008, 10:24 AM
I know that is what the CE companies WANT, but they could just kill BD ever being mainstream if they continue with this business model. What they want to keep from happening is exactly what made SD DVD the record setting format it became.

If they do not work on lowering BD player prices faster, then they will just make it a sure thing that BD will remain niche IMO.

It won't be the first time . . . nor the last time, that greed has gotten in the way of good business.

anythingwt
04-25-2008, 10:40 AM
It won't be the first time . . . nor the last time, that greed has gotten in the way of good business.

Depends on whats considered good business. It obviously costs more to produce BD players/movies, so they may not be being all that greedy at this point. A company can only afford to go so low. Prices have been going down on players. I've mentioned it before, but the BDP-S1 was originally $1,000... maybe even more at first. Now the newer BDP-S300 can be had new for $399. The player prices are heading in the right direction. All it takes is time..

bruceames
04-25-2008, 10:42 AM
I don't think player or disc prices are out of line. For what your getting, I think HDM prices are very reasonable and for me a bigger bargain than DVD is. The cheap DVDs were $16-$20 back in 2000, 3 years into the life of the format, so a little perspective is in order I think.

Chris Gerhard
04-25-2008, 10:56 AM
I am delighted with Blu-ray hardware and software prices. My average Blu-ray title cost is about $15 now and my hardware cost, PS3 $500, Samsung BD-P1200 $92, and Sony BDP-S1 $146. Blade Runner a 5-disc Blu-ray/DVD release is $20 at stores, anybody and everybody could have walked into Best Buy or Target or Circuit City and picked this up at that price. There are no excessive prices and profits are nil, I have no qualms with any of the studios or hardware manufacturers.

I expect Funai and other budget manufacturers to do exactly what was done with DVD, cut the costs to the bone for Blu-ray hardware, so profits are going to be even more difficult. Of course I know, it won't matter one whit what the facts are, there is a group here that is going to claim Blu-ray prices are sky high now that HD DVD will soon be history.

I am only willing to pay $15 for standard single disc catalog releases and $20 for standard single disc recent releases. I am having no problems finding software to purchase and with three players, no problem finding an open display in the house for somebody to watch whatever they want.

Chris

iDarren
04-25-2008, 11:04 AM
I don't think player or disc prices are out of line. For what your getting, I think HDM prices are very reasonable and for me a bigger bargain than DVD is. The cheap DVDs were $16-$20 back in 2000, 3 years into the life of the format, so a little perspective is in order I think.

Agree 100%

I feel HDM gives much better bang for the buck than DVD also.

anythingwt
04-25-2008, 11:12 AM
I am only willing to pay $15 for standard single disc catalog releases and $20 for standard single disc recent releases. I am having no problems finding software to purchase and with three players, no problem finding an open display in the house for somebody to watch whatever they want.

Chris

The BOGOs don't really happen anymore though.. makes it a bit more tough to find $15 titles.

The only $15 titles I find on the regular nowadays are used discs. :(

PFC5
04-25-2008, 11:21 AM
The BOGOs don't really happen anymore though.. makes it a bit more tough to find $15 titles.

The only $15 titles I find on the regular nowadays are used discs. :(

At least with used BD discs the hard coating makes it more likely that they will be in decent shape to watch even when used. Regardless whether the coating is needed, it is still a good thing IMO.

My only fear is that the hard coating may change over time and get cloudy or become more brittle and we will not know this until a number of years go by. Call me paranoid, but I hope for the best.

tracy
04-25-2008, 12:02 PM
Who cares what the price is when there is nothing even put out that I would want!

Of the over 200 movies I have in DVD not 1 is out in BD! It seems that only hollywood 'blockbusters' are considered as BD material by studios. Anything slightly off mainstream and forget about it in BD.

Stew4HD
04-25-2008, 12:08 PM
Who cares what the price is when there is nothing even put out that I would want!

Of the over 200 movies I have in DVD not 1 is out in BD! It seems that only hollywood 'blockbusters' are considered as BD material by studios. Anything slightly off mainstream and forget about it in BD.

QFT! It seems they are after a "certain target" demographically. Hopefully Uni will step up and start releasing titles that we like.

Nikopol
04-25-2008, 12:25 PM
Hopefully the indies (as announced) and guys like Criterion will get in the game as well.

I am just wondering, how well these titles would sell. Seeing how many of the classics seemed to have tanked (though i have no numbers, but afaik they didn't sell truckloads of Casablanca et al) i am afaid the "usual demographics" are indeed those who are actually buying the discs in somewhat significant numbers right now.

How well would titles like Seven Samurai or Psycho sell today? :what:

anythingwt
04-25-2008, 12:31 PM
At least with used BD discs the hard coating makes it more likely that they will be in decent shape to watch even when used. Regardless whether the coating is needed, it is still a good thing IMO.

My only fear is that the hard coating may change over time and get cloudy or become more brittle and we will not know this until a number of years go by. Call me paranoid, but I hope for the best.

Yeah I've personally got no problem with used discs, as long as they come in the original box.

Who knows if the whole "disc rot" will be an issue long term. There's no way of knowing until some more years go by.

bruceames
04-25-2008, 12:34 PM
Who cares what the price is when there is nothing even put out that I would want!

Of the over 200 movies I have in DVD not 1 is out in BD! It seems that only hollywood 'blockbusters' are considered as BD material by studios. Anything slightly off mainstream and forget about it in BD.


As long as the PS3 is the dominant BD player, BD's catalog will have a lower percentage of non-mainstream titles to choose from than HD DVD or DVD. For the PS3 demographic, it's heaven, but for everyone else, not the ideal.

anythingwt
04-25-2008, 12:37 PM
QFT! It seems they are after a "certain target" demographically. Hopefully Uni will step up and start releasing titles that we like.

That certain target just seems to be more mainstream, which is what will make them the most money, as they will appeal to more people. They have been good with releasing all the new big box office releases right in line with when they get released on DVD, and that will probably stay the same. Older and smaller titles may get less attention right now, because they need to do what they can to appeal to the masses, at least to get BD in more homes. Then they will likely focus on re-releasing more of the smaller/older films.

Chris Gerhard
04-25-2008, 03:34 PM
At least with used BD discs the hard coating makes it more likely that they will be in decent shape to watch even when used. Regardless whether the coating is needed, it is still a good thing IMO.

My only fear is that the hard coating may change over time and get cloudy or become more brittle and we will not know this until a number of years go by. Call me paranoid, but I hope for the best.

I haven't seen that concern expressed previously. I can only hope that the technical wizards that developed this coating know for a fact, it will not change over time. If you have seen any technical discussion anywhere that suggests there is reason for concern, can you point me in the right direction? I certainly don't have the technical knowledge to indicate that it is impossible that could happen, but I admit I have sure trusted the engineers. I have seen first hand how LaserDisc rotted over time and that wasn't pretty.

Chris

Chris Gerhard
04-25-2008, 03:37 PM
The BOGOs don't really happen anymore though.. makes it a bit more tough to find $15 titles.

The only $15 titles I find on the regular nowadays are used discs. :(

JR and Amazon.com had a bunch of sub $15 titles recently and I believe many Warner titles are routinely available for that amount from the Warner site if you buy a few. During March there was a buy 2 get 1 free, and many titles priced at $20, makes that 3 for $40. The 25% off will also get all you titles delivered for $15 each. It has actually been very easy.

Chris

PFC5
04-25-2008, 03:49 PM
I haven't seen that concern expressed previously. I can only hope that the technical wizards that developed this coating know for a fact, it will not change over time. If you have seen any technical discussion anywhere that suggests there is reason for concern, can you point me in the right direction? I certainly don't have the technical knowledge to indicate that it is impossible that could happen, but I admit I have sure trusted the engineers. I have seen first hand how LaserDisc rotted over time and that wasn't pretty.

Chris

I remember reading some posts over at AVS where the posters worked with this type of hard coating material. One of them stated that he did it for military applications as well and that the material would tend to yellow or cloudy and become brittle and crack after a few years. I am sure the military is using different materials than BD is using so how close these different applications are to each other in similar characteristics I wouldn't know.

Like you, I feel we have to trust that this will not happen, and all we can do is hope for the best. I figure they would offer some replacement discs if this ended up happening.

What did they do with the disc rot on LD? Did they offer any replacements or some other type of compensation?

bruceames
04-25-2008, 05:20 PM
I think it's a good move by Lionsgate to lower the SRP to $20 on those catalogs which have been out for a while and/or have seen sales flatten out. It's all supply and demand and it's dependant not only on 'normal' pricing but how the corresponding DVD version is priced as well. It's tough to compete against $6.00 DVDs.

crazyal
04-25-2008, 05:29 PM
That certain target just seems to be more mainstream, which is what will make them the most money, as they will appeal to more people. They have been good with releasing all the new big box office releases right in line with when they get released on DVD, and that will probably stay the same. Older and smaller titles may get less attention right now, because they need to do what they can to appeal to the masses, at least to get BD in more homes. Then they will likely focus on re-releasing more of the smaller/older films.

This works both ways. Those smaller titles and the classics in the vaults are needed every bit as much right now because they will get a different, non PS3 crowd interested in BD.

ssjLancer
04-25-2008, 05:32 PM
I remember reading some posts over at AVS where the posters worked with this type of hard coating material. One of them stated that he did it for military applications as well and that the material would tend to yellow or cloudy and become brittle and crack after a few years. I am sure the military is using different materials than BD is using so how close these different applications are to each other in similar characteristics I wouldn't know.

Like you, I feel we have to trust that this will not happen, and all we can do is hope for the best. I figure they would offer some replacement discs if this ended up happening.

What did they do with the disc rot on LD? Did they offer any replacements or some other type of compensation?I think its safe to say that the layer under the coating will degrade faster from moisture and sunlight before the hard coating itself starts to distort.

Chris Gerhard
04-25-2008, 07:24 PM
I remember reading some posts over at AVS where the posters worked with this type of hard coating material. One of them stated that he did it for military applications as well and that the material would tend to yellow or cloudy and become brittle and crack after a few years. I am sure the military is using different materials than BD is using so how close these different applications are to each other in similar characteristics I wouldn't know.

Like you, I feel we have to trust that this will not happen, and all we can do is hope for the best. I figure they would offer some replacement discs if this ended up happening.

What did they do with the disc rot on LD? Did they offer any replacements or some other type of compensation?

Pioneer did replace rotted discs free of charge. I replaced maybe a half dozen using that program. I sold most all of mine around 1999because DVD was so much better but I didn't check to see if any others had rotted, they were sold as is although most devoted fans knew the titles that were likely to rot.

Chris

anythingwt
04-25-2008, 07:33 PM
I think its safe to say that the layer under the coating will degrade faster from moisture and sunlight before the hard coating itself starts to distort.

And hopefully no one keeps they blu-ray movies out in the sun or in moist places, so with that theory no one should have any issues.

PFC5
04-25-2008, 10:06 PM
I think its safe to say that the layer under the coating will degrade faster from moisture and sunlight before the hard coating itself starts to distort.

Well if the hard coating is applied properly I would assume moisture could not get between the coating and the data layer. As far as sunlight, well no disc will hold up to direct sunlight. That is why discs should not BE in direct sunlight. ;)

anythingwt
04-25-2008, 11:36 PM
Well if the hard coating is applied properly I would assume moisture could not get between the coating and the data layer. As far as sunlight, well no disc will hold up to direct sunlight. That is why discs should not BE in direct sunlight. ;)

I learned that the hard way a few years back when I accidentally left a CD in it's case on the dash in my car before I headed into work for the day. When I got out at the end of the day, the case and CD were literally shriveled. Any discs combined with the Arizona sun are bad news. When the weather hits over 110 degrees outside, it can get deathly hot inside a closed up vehicle.