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3 reasons to stick with HD-DVD

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Old 01-30-2008, 07:51 AM   #1  
pjc
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Default 3 reasons to stick with HD-DVD

I thought this was a good article......I feel it is neutral and the author even says he's not saying to avoid Blu, just don't feel you have to ditch your HDDVD player or avoid buying one if you're on the fence...

http://www.electronichouse.com/artic...d_dvd/C174/D1/


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3 Good Reasons To Stick With HD DVD
January 30, 2008 | by Scott Wasser

By most accounts, Blu-ray has surged ahead in the high-def format war. But here are three reasons why HD DVD is still a solid investment.

Although it’s quite possible the decision by Warner Brothers Entertainment to abandon HD DVD will wind up being one of the final shots in the high-definition disc war, there remain some very sound reasons to ally with the HD DVD camp.

Granted, when Warner in June joins forces with Sony, Disney, and Fox as exclusive Blu-ray Disc distributors, the BD arsenal will be pretty impressive. But HD DVD still has a couple of powerful weapons in Universal and Paramount/Dreamworks, and both companies recently restated their support of the format. That means anyone planning to add the high-def version of “American Gangster” to their home video library better not be too quick to give up on HD DVD.

According to a poll of some 1300 Electronichouse.com readers, (see the following articles: Top 10 Reasons to Buy HD DVD, Top 10 Reasons to Buy Blu-ray), 41-percent currently own or plan to buy an HD DVD player, compared to 36-percent who own or plan to buy a Blu-ray player. Twelve percent said they were waiting for the dust to settle before making a decision, and 11-percent own or plan to buy both formats.

This is (albeit unscientific) proof there are some HD DVD supporters out there. Here are three compelling arguments to join their side.

Hardware Bargains
If it’s true that money talks, HDTV owners wanting to join the high-def disc world should walk into the HD DVD camp. HD DVD players have had a price edge – sometimes significant – over BD players from Day 1, and Toshiba’s recent price cuts suggest that isn’t about to change any time soon. List prices for Toshiba’s players are now $149.99 for the 1080i HD-A3, $199.99 for the HD-A30 with 1080p output, and $299.99 for its top-of-the-line HD-A35. Amazon is offering the HD-A3 for $129, which is less than the collective regular cost of the seven free titles that are part of the deal. And the format’s mandatory specifications ensure that all HD DVD players support the latest Dolby audio codecs and full internet-based interactivity. Not bad for less than half the price of the least expensive BD player.

Exclusivity
It may be true that around 70 percent of home video titles will be on Blu-ray Disc once Warner stops supporting HD DVD, but your high-def disc library simply won’t be complete if it’s exclusively BD. Right now, for example, mega-hits such as “Shrek the Third,” “Transformers,” “Knocked Up” and all three titles in the Bourne series are available only on HD DVD. Barring a sudden change of heart by Universal and Paramount/Dreamworks, the same will be true of upcoming releases such as “American Gangster,” “Bee Movie,” and “Beowolf.” Granted, there also are plenty of must-have BD exclusives – the Spider-Man and Pirates of the Caribbean trilogies come immediately to mind. But we’re not arguing against adopting Blu-ray; we’re citing reasons it makes sense to embrace HD DVD.

Dual Personality
Chances are pretty good – like, say, a billion-to-one – that anyone who buys an HD DVD or BD player already has a collection of standard DVDs and realizes that players from both camps will upscale those DVDs to near high-def quality. But anyone with a DVD library also is likely to have more than one DVD player, and you might as well feed it a hockey puck as try to play a BD disc on it. But HD DVD standards provide for Combo Format discs that feature high-def on one side and a standard-definition DVD on the other. That means they’ll not only work on the new HD DVD player in the home theater, but also on the DVD player in the bedroom, the laptop, and even in the car.

How much longer you’ll be able to buy new high-def releases to feed your HD DVD player, of course, is uncertain. But with movie downloads gaining momentum, the longevity of Blu-ray also is up in the air. And HD DVD prices are so affordable it won’t hurt as much if the hardware is relegated to playing DVDs and catalogue titles a few years from now.
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Old 01-30-2008, 08:59 AM   #2  
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Absolutely, HD DVD players make good single region DVD players if you don't want compatibility with a variety of additional formats. That is just a very difficult product to market.

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By most accounts, Blu-ray has surged ahead in the high-def format war.
Couldn't he have just stated by all accounts?

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Old 01-30-2008, 09:02 AM   #3  
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Originally Posted by Chris Gerhard View Post
Absolutely, HD DVD players make good single region DVD players if you don't want compatibility with a variety of additional formats. That is just a very difficult product to market.

Couldn't he have just stated by all accounts?

Chris
Except for you Chris and a few of us here on the forum, the number of J6P consumers that care if their player also does SACD. DVD-A and plays other regionally coded DVDs is so small to be almost non-exisitant.

The market it seems for the HD DVD player (an excellent upscaler, CD and high definition player) seems to much larger then the tiny little markets for those actually for all intents and purposes dead formats and the number of Americans that collect and want to play overseas regionally coded DVDs in so far as the market here in the US barely has a pulse (statistically wise).

Last edited by unotis; 01-30-2008 at 09:11 AM..
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Old 01-30-2008, 09:28 AM   #4  
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Originally Posted by unotis View Post
Except for you Chris and a few of us here on the forum, the number of J6P consumers that care if their player also does SACD. DVD-A and plays other regionally coded DVDs is so small to be almost non-exisitant.

The market it seems for the HD DVD player (an excellent upscaler, CD and high definition player) seems to much larger then the tiny little markets for those actually for all intents and purposes dead formats and the number of Americans that collect and want to play overseas regionally coded DVDs in so far as the market here in the US barely has a pulse (statistically wise).
There are a lot of formats that HD DVD players can't play that my universal DVD players do play and there is a market for those formats. Those formats are in addition to SACD, DVD-A and other region DVD-V. The HD DVD players are very limited by today's standards in terms of what they play. Demand for SACD is huge compared to demand for HD DVD for one example of why the players won't be big sellers outside of the HD DVD niche market.

I tried to come up with a list of all of the various formats that popular DVD players handle and the Toshiba HD DVD players don't handle, but it is too cumbersome to do. If you know and want to list it, that would be helpful. DivX and Xvid are a couple, maybe WMA, AAC, Flac? My Oppo has ports for connecting an iPod or MP3 player, card reader, and picture viewer and I don't know what an HD DVD player can do with any of that. I follow this stuff and can't really list all of the shortcomings some users might find when buying an HD DVD player for something other than primarily for HD DVD.

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Old 01-30-2008, 02:42 PM   #5  
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Originally Posted by Chris Gerhard View Post
Absolutely, HD DVD players make good single region DVD players if you don't want compatibility with a variety of additional formats. That is just a very difficult product to market.

Couldn't he have just stated by all accounts?

Chris
All accounts to me would have to include:

1) Blu-Ray players less expensive than HD-DVD
2) Have better features than HD-DVD
3) Sony manages to buy off the other studios.
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Old 01-30-2008, 02:50 PM   #6  
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Originally Posted by Chris Gerhard View Post
There are a lot of formats that HD DVD players can't play that my universal DVD players do play and there is a market for those formats. Those formats are in addition to SACD, DVD-A and other region DVD-V. The HD DVD players are very limited by today's standards in terms of what they play. Demand for SACD is huge compared to demand for HD DVD for one example of why the players won't be big sellers outside of the HD DVD niche market.

I tried to come up with a list of all of the various formats that popular DVD players handle and the Toshiba HD DVD players don't handle, but it is too cumbersome to do. If you know and want to list it, that would be helpful. DivX and Xvid are a couple, maybe WMA, AAC, Flac? My Oppo has ports for connecting an iPod or MP3 player, card reader, and picture viewer and I don't know what an HD DVD player can do with any of that. I follow this stuff and can't really list all of the shortcomings some users might find when buying an HD DVD player for something other than primarily for HD DVD.

Chris
Well, they may not be included in stand alone Toshiba HD players, but it should be pointed out that one HD-DVD machine does in fact play most of those formats, the Xbox 360 with add-on.
I realize it is not the be-all end-all of the HD player market, but neither are the universal format SD players you're describing either. I have never owned a DVD player that supported all the formats you're touting, especially Divx and Xvid, and I have owned several higher end players.

The 360 with addon will play WMV & HD-WMV, Mpeg, Divx, Xvid, SD, and HD-DVD (from any region), and while I'm not sure about SACD, I would imagine it may well play them too. Not to mention it fully supports CD, Mp3 and WMA, it too will also show pictures and not only take an ipod signal, but you can also connect a PSP or any other such portable compact storage device/player and stream music, photos or video directly from that. Plus if offers all the networking options as well.

Put simply, the 360(+ addon) is the single most univeral player on the market, and once they put out a BD or DF drive like they have been quoted as saying was a possibility, it will be THE universal player.

I'm not trying to start some kind of console/fanboy war here by any means, I just want to point out that one of the HD players out there supports more formats then any universal player I have ever seen... And I believe you can get both the console and addon now for a grand total of about $400.

Last edited by Noct; 01-30-2008 at 03:14 PM..
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Old 02-01-2008, 07:16 AM   #7  
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i have found it to be a hit or miss with dvd+r discs on my A-2. Not sure the rhyme or reason behind some playing and some not, but that is kind of annoying. However it does not list on the machine that dvd+-r is a format it supports.
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Old 02-01-2008, 09:41 AM   #8  
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Originally Posted by Noct View Post
Well, they may not be included in stand alone Toshiba HD players, but it should be pointed out that one HD-DVD machine does in fact play most of those formats, the Xbox 360 with add-on.
I realize it is not the be-all end-all of the HD player market, but neither are the universal format SD players you're describing either. I have never owned a DVD player that supported all the formats you're touting, especially Divx and Xvid, and I have owned several higher end players.

The 360 with addon will play WMV & HD-WMV, Mpeg, Divx, Xvid, SD, and HD-DVD (from any region), and while I'm not sure about SACD, I would imagine it may well play them too. Not to mention it fully supports CD, Mp3 and WMA, it too will also show pictures and not only take an ipod signal, but you can also connect a PSP or any other such portable compact storage device/player and stream music, photos or video directly from that. Plus if offers all the networking options as well.

Put simply, the 360(+ addon) is the single most univeral player on the market, and once they put out a BD or DF drive like they have been quoted as saying was a possibility, it will be THE universal player.

I'm not trying to start some kind of console/fanboy war here by any means, I just want to point out that one of the HD players out there supports more formats then any universal player I have ever seen... And I believe you can get both the console and addon now for a grand total of about $400.
I didn't know the XBox 360 add-on could play so many of the various formats. I do know it can't play SACD or DVD-A, but anybody that wants those formats probably already has them covered, I know I do.

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Old 02-01-2008, 09:42 AM   #9  
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Originally Posted by hidef-blue View Post
i have found it to be a hit or miss with dvd+r discs on my A-2. Not sure the rhyme or reason behind some playing and some not, but that is kind of annoying. However it does not list on the machine that dvd+-r is a format it supports.
You found the reason it isn't listed, it can't be relied on. You might find some specific media works really and others not at all.

Chris
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