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Upconversion players vs HD DVD, Blur-ray

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Old 11-27-2007, 11:46 AM   #46  
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Default The format war doesn't have much impact right now

Lets suppose that HD-DVD immediately agrees to stop production and puts 100% of it's resources behind BD. All studios line up behind BD. All stores agree to stock only BD high def movies. This is exactly what Chris is proposing, and I am saying it would not make much of a difference.

Do sales of players and disks go up? A little. I know several HD television owners who are waiting out the format war, and they might jump in. I wouldn't buy a BD player till a 2.0 BD player is available, but I am going to do that anyway, regardless of the status of the war.

But what about John Q. Public? Does the fact that BD is the only high def format available make him want to go out and buy a $399 player for his analog television? No.

The truth of the matter is that one format right now really doesn't make much difference because the real war is against SD-DVDs.

It doesn't matter who started the war. It doesn't matter if there is one or two (or three or four) high def formats. What does matter is high def television percentages in the general population and player / movie pricing.

Lets make one more assumption, just for fun. Lets assume that the government GIVES every family in the nation a 50" HD television. Gives it to them. Lets also assume that the government GIVES each family a BD player. Will BD movie sales go up? Yes some, but it will still get it's butt kicked by SD DVD because John Q. Public can buy new releases for CHEAPER than BD movies. He can get older movies for $5.99 on sale all day, and is not going to pay $24.99 at BB for the same movie.
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Old 11-27-2007, 01:05 PM   #47  
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Lets make one more assumption, just for fun. Lets assume that the government GIVES every family in the nation a 50" HD television. Gives it to them. Lets also assume that the government GIVES each family a BD player. Will BD movie sales go up? Yes some, but it will still get it's butt kicked by SD DVD because John Q. Public can buy new releases for CHEAPER than BD movies. He can get older movies for $5.99 on sale all day, and is not going to pay $24.99 at BB for the same movie.
Indeed! And this is the sort of common sense that the "philes" just don't get.
It's really a no brainer to us earth people.
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Old 12-01-2007, 02:04 PM   #48  
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I'm just an average Joe....I bought an HD-DVD ($99 Walmart) player because I wanted an upconverting DVD player for my new HDTV (I figured what the heck...having the ability to play a few HD-DVDs wasn't a bad 'freebie')...don't really plan to stock my movie collection with HD-DVDs...borrowed a friend's Transformers HD-DVD and put it in the player, then put my copy of Transformers (regular DVD) into the player and although the HD-DVD did look a little better, the regular dvd upconverted was fine by me...I bought Transformers on sale for $16.99 and my friend paid $29.99 for his copy....

The higher cost of the HD-DVDs, for me, isn't worth it. But I'm not a videophile either...just a regular Joe who likes to watch movies from time to time....
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Old 12-01-2007, 02:42 PM   #49  
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I'm just an average Joe....I bought an HD-DVD ($99 Walmart) player because I wanted an upconverting DVD player for my new HDTV (I figured what the heck...having the ability to play a few HD-DVDs wasn't a bad 'freebie')...don't really plan to stock my movie collection with HD-DVDs...borrowed a friend's Transformers HD-DVD and put it in the player, then put my copy of Transformers (regular DVD) into the player and although the HD-DVD did look a little better, the regular dvd upconverted was fine by me...I bought Transformers on sale for $16.99 and my friend paid $29.99 for his copy....

The higher cost of the HD-DVDs, for me, isn't worth it. But I'm not a videophile either...just a regular Joe who likes to watch movies from time to time....
I don't know if you are the average customer that purchased an inexpensive HD-A2 but I am certain what you are doing is very common. It is a very good upconverting DVD player and worth that price to a group of people for that ability alone.

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Old 12-01-2007, 02:50 PM   #50  
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Lets suppose that HD-DVD immediately agrees to stop production and puts 100% of it's resources behind BD. All studios line up behind BD. All stores agree to stock only BD high def movies. This is exactly what Chris is proposing, and I am saying it would not make much of a difference.

Do sales of players and disks go up? A little. I know several HD television owners who are waiting out the format war, and they might jump in. I wouldn't buy a BD player till a 2.0 BD player is available, but I am going to do that anyway, regardless of the status of the war.

But what about John Q. Public? Does the fact that BD is the only high def format available make him want to go out and buy a $399 player for his analog television? No.

The truth of the matter is that one format right now really doesn't make much difference because the real war is against SD-DVDs.

It doesn't matter who started the war. It doesn't matter if there is one or two (or three or four) high def formats. What does matter is high def television percentages in the general population and player / movie pricing.

Lets make one more assumption, just for fun. Lets assume that the government GIVES every family in the nation a 50" HD television. Gives it to them. Lets also assume that the government GIVES each family a BD player. Will BD movie sales go up? Yes some, but it will still get it's butt kicked by SD DVD because John Q. Public can buy new releases for CHEAPER than BD movies. He can get older movies for $5.99 on sale all day, and is not going to pay $24.99 at BB for the same movie.
You can read the polls at various sites, I don't recall ever seeing even a single poll that hasn't indicted more that 50% of the potential market responding to the poll has selected the option wait for the format war to end before getting involved. If you think this pitiful market is all these formats can do even if only one exists, I completely disagree. I don't know the upside, but the market grows by multiples quickly if HD DVD disappears is my opinion. Since DVD is still 97% of the market, the second most common response was continue to use DVD because it is good enough. I do know there is a huge group that doesn't even bother to inquire about these new formats and will continue with DVD regardless, but I am certain with HDTV I believe in close to 40% of homes in the US already, an HD disc format would be doing a lot better without the confusion and reluctance being caused by this format war.

It was also clear recently that a percentage of the group that was waiting did go ahead and buy an inexpensive HD DVD player with the crazy low prices, I just don't think that group is going to buy many discs unless the format war ends.

Chris
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Old 12-01-2007, 03:15 PM   #51  
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I agree with you Chris. I am new to HDTV and if there was only one HD format for DVD's available, then I would be buying it when I buy my plasma in January. The fact that there are 2 formats competing against eachother leaves me with the chance that I could pick the wrong one and be stuck with DVD's version of a Betamax. Therefore I am going to buy a top of the line DVD upconverter instead and wait to see who wins this war. Now I just have to find out which upconverter is widely concidered to be the best. Perferably one with a burner too. Any ideas on that would be great. Thanks.
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Old 12-01-2007, 04:30 PM   #52  
What's all this, then?...
 
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Some of the best upconverting DVD players out there are Hi-Def disc players because of the higher-performance DSP's and overall higher-quality circuitry in both the digital and analog sections needed to play Hi-Def disc formats.

You can actually get an HD DVD player for less money than an upconverting SD player that doesn't do as good a job upconverting SD.

Reminds me of when I got an S-VHS Hi-Fi VCR for less money than a VHS VCR and even though I never used it for S-VHS recording/playback, it looked remarkably better on regular VHS as a result of the higer bandwidth circuitry necessary for S-VHS, along with the S-Video output. People routinely commented how much better tapes looked played back on my VCR.

I don't doubt that some people are waiting out the war, but I never understood the logic. Whatever Hi-Def disc player one buys will continue to play whatever Hi-Def discs one buys. For the same or less money than a decent upconverting SD player, buying an HD DVD player is a no-brainer regardless of what happens in the format war.

Last edited by BobY; 12-01-2007 at 04:33 PM..
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Old 12-01-2007, 05:03 PM   #53  
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Some of the best upconverting DVD players out there are Hi-Def disc players because of the higher-performance DSP's and overall higher-quality circuitry in both the digital and analog sections needed to play Hi-Def disc formats.
Some of the best value upscaling DVD players are in fact HD DVD players. They aren't of interest to me personally because I play all other 5" shiny disc formats I own a lot more than I play HD DVD but for someone with interest in only region 1 DVD-V, CD and HD DVD, the players are great values. The market that wants the best DVD-V performance but doesn't care about HD DVD probably doesn't even know much about the Toshiba HD DVD players since the Toshiba standard DVD players have been consistently poor over the years.

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Old 12-01-2007, 05:25 PM   #54  
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Perhaps so, but that's their loss.

It's not Toshiba's fault if they don't do the research and end up spending more than they need to.

At this point, most of the upscaling SD DVD players sold are not very good and those who are willing to spend significantly more or seek out more estoreric brands are few.
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Old 12-02-2007, 09:50 AM   #55  
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Originally Posted by fuzzynoise View Post
I'm just an average Joe....I bought an HD-DVD ($99 Walmart) player because I wanted an upconverting DVD player for my new HDTV (I figured what the heck...having the ability to play a few HD-DVDs wasn't a bad 'freebie')...

The higher cost of the HD-DVDs, for me, isn't worth it. But I'm not a videophile either...just a regular Joe who likes to watch movies from time to time....
Right, but because the HD/BR philes are so phanatic, they convinced you to spend $99 bucks for something that you could have picked up for <$50.
Or if you really wanted a freebie, you could have spent $120 and picked up an upscaler that also had the capability to burn DVDs.

In my humble average joe opinion, I see no reason to spend any money for the capability to play HD DVD that I have no intention of either buying or renting. Give me a DVDR anyday.
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Old 12-02-2007, 10:07 AM   #56  
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Default The war is between high def & standard def, not HD-DVD and BD

The point I was trying to make in my previous post is that the real battle is getting people to move from SD-DVD to high def movies (and television). The battle between HD-DVD and BD is (IMO) a sideshow.

The point I was trying to make is that even if we had one format, we would not be much better off than we are right now, and might possibly be worse off. If HD-DVD had never been invented, where would BD player prices be right now? How about disk prices? IMO the competition has forced both formats to cut prices and improve quality.

So what has to happen to move either or both formats along?
(1) HD television must become the norm in more homes.
(2) Both BD & HD-DVD must overcome the perception that upconverted SD-DVD = high def.
(3) Prices must drop for both the players and the movies.

Look at what fuzzynoise wrote in his post. He has an HD-DVD player and doesn't plan to buy HD-DVDs because when he compared the HD-DVD picture to the upconverted, it wasn't enough of an improvement (in his opinion, which is the only one that counts) to justify paying $30 for HD-DVD vs $17 for SD-DVD.

Back to my point. Fuzzynoise has an HD-DVD player and a high def television, but he is NOT planning on buying HD-DVD movies. Why? Because of of the price of movies. Would HD-DVD (or BD) going away change this? Not unless movie prices drop.

A lot of energy is being wasted on this war, and the focus is on the wrong place. The enemy is SD-DVD, not BD or HD-DVD. If BD or HD-DVD fails, IMO it could kill high def movies, not make things better. John Public might very well assume that the other format was right behind in failing as well, then make that a fact by only buying the "safe" alternative, SD-DVD.
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Old 12-02-2007, 10:40 AM   #57  
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Right, but because the HD/BR philes are so phanatic, they convinced you to spend $99 bucks for something that you could have picked up for <$50.
Or if you really wanted a freebie, you could have spent $120 and picked up an upscaler that also had the capability to burn DVDs.

In my humble average joe opinion, I see no reason to spend any money for the capability to play HD DVD that I have no intention of either buying or renting. Give me a DVDR anyday.

I think one thing holding back HD DVD and BlurRay is the lack of stand alone recorders. With that said, when they finally DO come out with them, the Sony's probably will only allow recording of commercials (copy protection) and they all will be costly both for the unit and the media.

So really, buying a DVDR that upscales makes a lot of sense. Still I would like to own a HD DVD some day, but feel no pressing need right now.

Ed in the land of equivocation (Sacramento, CA)
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Old 12-02-2007, 05:31 PM   #58  
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Default Haven't some of you seen what these movies look like???

I had a few spare minutes and read this entire thread, and some of the views are startling when you consider the forum we are communicating on...
I DON'T give a crap which format wins for the most part. I have a slight edge for HD DVD since I bought the A2, but all this bickering is just insanity. I just know that the A2 was very inexpensive, and a great VALUE (Value= the features/advantages/benefits vs. the cost) for what you pay. My A2 is worth the money and then some just for the unbelievably good job it does with upconvert, let alone the actual HD DVD discs look to me like crack does to Pookie on New Jack City. The high-def video experience, when properly demonstrated on a nice set that has been calibrated with care is light-years ahead of regular DVD...
The reason the experience in both formats hasn't reached anything close to critical mass is of course cost, PLUS the value has NOT been built to Joe Schmoe. I have showed off my player to several people that don't give 2 hoots about "artifacts" and "grain" and MPEG2 this vs. MPEG4 that, and when they watch a movie on my t.v., they simply poop their pants. This is a product that has to be demonstrated to be valued, so I think the prices need to come down plus the commercials need to be clear-cut and dramatic.
Let me see if I can think of a 30-second spot that would get the idea across that doesn't rely on slick visuals that wouldn't be appreciated anyway (remember the old "DVD!" commercials on the VHS tapes?)...
FADE IN: A DOCTOR'S EYE CHART
P.O.V.: through the eye-exam "goggle viewers"...
But this particular eye chart has rows of Shrek heads, Transformer Heads, Superman Heads, E.T. heads, and Joe Pesci heads. Sure, why not... Joe Pesci Heads.

DOCTOR

Which looks better? THIS one....

THE DOCTOR flips the Joe Pesci Head from a blurry image, to a sharp one.

DOCTOR

Or this one?

The "in-focus" Pesci Head comes alive.

JOE PESCI HEAD

What? Am I blurry? Do I look F##**
blurry to you? I'm in HD DVD, does that
f***** amuse YOU?

The PATIENT pulls his head away from the equipment.

PATIENT
(frightened)
Doctor, I'll buy the HD DVD player, as
long as that man never bothers me
again.

CLOSE UP: We now see the "DOCTOR" is a Best Buy employee (or whatever), and they aren't in an office, but in a corner of the store set up for these demonstrations. Other shoppers pause and stare at the commotion.

"DOCTOR"

Sir, I can gurantee that. Just don't buy Goodfellas
in High Defintion, and everything will be alright...

SMASH CUT: HD DVD: As Real As Real Can Get.

FADE OUT: The Joe Pesci head...

JOE PESCI HEAD (This time from Lethal Weapon)

O.K., O.K., so I cost a FEW bucks more, okay?
I'm bein' upfront about that. But they f*$% you
on the regular DVD players, O.K.? You myswell go
watch a drive in movie thorugh your windshield
in a thunderstorm....Wait, wait, wait, I didn't tell ya
the best part, K? You can watch all your old DVDs
on this thing and they'll look way better, too!

Joe Pesci fades with the HD DVD logo..
***********************************************

o.k., so I came up with that in 3 seconds, but you guys get the picture. It's all about marketing and lowering costs, and when these things happen I'll be pumped cause everything will be cheaper and as always get better and better. In the meantime, I'm going to support the cause by continuing to buy movies in High-Def. Because I love movies, and this is currently the very best way to see them.
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Old 12-03-2007, 04:33 AM   #59  
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When a consumer can purchase a game system (PS3), that also plays Blu-ray format DVD's, that saves/stores picture and video files, that can connect to your wireless network allowing internet surfing, along with online game play - and also upconverts standard DVD's!!! Not only is that a bargain for a sticker price of either $400 or $500, it's comman sense for the American consumer. Oh, and the PS3 also acts as a music player, simiar to a digital music center (80 gig = 7,500 songs).

These are just the popular features of the PS3. It also has great potencial for allowing HD video and game streaming (no more physical media). Although the big debate is Blue-ray vs HD DVD, the consumer science behind the PS3 will allow Blue-ray to continue to lead the HD battle.

It's true that an HD DVD has comparable specs to a Blue-ray DVD, possibly even better based on it's simplicity. So, to all the Pro-HD-DVD folks out there steaming right now - I agree based on the information I have received that HD DVD out performs Blu-ray. So, one would think that HD DVD should be the obvious winner in the HD race, but, guess what? It still won't win, even with slightly better technology at a better price point. Here's why:

If you show an American consumer (average being a middle-class white male for these types of technology purchases) an HD DVD player for $300 (a great price from what I have seen), or a PS3 with all of the previousely mentioned capabilites for about $100 bucks more, what do you think will happen? The customer buys the PS3 more often than not.

If you have a consumer that just wants an HD DVD player, it will probably split 50/50. The blue ray player keeps up with the HD DVD player, even though it's higher priced, because there are currently more Blu-ray titles on store shelves.

So, that's why the Blu-ray DVD's are out selling HD Dvd's 3-to-1, based on the numbers post black friday.

Bottom line - Blue ray will either "win" the HD race, or continue to lead until HD DVD comes out with more HD titles than Blue ray, or they start offering the HD DVD player free with the purchase of an XBox 360. Even then, the PS3 is more space saving as the player is built in. The XBox 360 HD DVD player is an external unit. One more strike against HD DVD.

I would like to place my vote with Blue-ray please. (And no - I don't work for Sony)

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Old 12-03-2007, 07:39 AM   #60  
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COLORADO54,

I agree with you that the PS3, with it's ability to do play games, play BD movies and serve as an internet connection is a remarkable piece of equipment. To me it is the best BD player on the market.

I do disagree with you on one point. If you show the average American consumer both a $300 HD-DVD player and a $400 PS3, his response will be "both are too expensive". I plan to buy a BD player when 2.0 profile players are available, but since I am not a gamer, will probably not buy a PS3. Yes it is nice that it plays games (would be better if backwardly compatible), but my interest is in playing movies.

The American public will start to get involved in a bigger way when prices drop for BOTH the players and movies. The $99 sale that Walmart did put a lot of players into average people's hands and was cheap enough to be purchased as a good upconverting player with high def capabilities for if / when a high def television was purchased.

Both $300 and $400 are too expensive for anyone but an enthusiast. The second thing that needs to change is movie prices. When a new SD-DVD is selling for $16 at BB the week it is introduced while the same movie is $24 for BD / HD-DVD then the consumer will pick the SD-DVD unless it is something they really want in high def.

I am optimistic that we will get there. High def movies will become the norm over time (I think DVD total sales only passed total VHS sales this year), but not as quickly as many in this forum are wanting. Also, I think both formats will survive, similar to the DVD+ / - R recordable formats.
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