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You are here: MacNN Forums > Community > MacNN Lounge > Blu-ray/HD DVD... Who is winning?

View Poll Results: Which do you have? (Choose only ONE. Includes stand-alones and game consoles.)
Poll Options:
HD DVD 34 votes (17.09%)
Blu-ray 87 votes (43.72%)
Both 14 votes (7.04%)
Neither 70 votes (35.18%)
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 199. You may not vote on this poll
Blu-ray/HD DVD... Who is winning? (Page 6)
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Dec 18, 2006, 10:59 AM
 
I have a feeling the next round of MacPro's will have an OPTION for a blu-ray drive even if it is just a reader.

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Dec 18, 2006, 12:18 PM
 
I haven't really been following this thread sorry.

Could anyone tell me what HD-DVD or BluRay movies would be good to get to showcase the format? I'm thinking of getting a player tonight.
     
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Dec 18, 2006, 12:28 PM
 
And you don't know which kind of player you're going to get?
     
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Dec 18, 2006, 12:54 PM
 
Originally Posted by mdc View Post
I haven't really been following this thread sorry.

Could anyone tell me what HD-DVD or BluRay movies would be good to get to showcase the format? I'm thinking of getting a player tonight.
HD DVD and Blu-ray release list

If you have no specific allegiance to either format (and you're not looking for a console), I'd recommend getting the Toshiba HD-A2 HD DVD player, simply because it's the cheapest, and reportedly an excellent player.

It goes for $499 list, and as low as $399 street from a few vendors. (More like $449 usually though apparently.)

     
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Dec 18, 2006, 12:58 PM
 
Sorry for the confusion. I have a 360 and will most probably be going the HD-DVD drive for the 360 route.

I was wondering which HD-DVD movies are a good showcase of the format. Thanks
     
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Dec 18, 2006, 01:04 PM
 
Originally Posted by mdc View Post
Sorry for the confusion. I have a 360 and will most probably be going the HD-DVD drive for the 360 route.

I was wondering which HD-DVD movies are a good showcase of the format. Thanks
OK, I posted this in the other thread, but here it is again:

----

HD DVDs rated by image quality*

*Some of the movies suck despite having gorgeous image quality.
Other movies may have mediocre image quality, but are still great movies.
     
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Dec 18, 2006, 04:47 PM
 
Originally Posted by mdc View Post
Sorry for the confusion. I have a 360 and will most probably be going the HD-DVD drive for the 360 route.

I was wondering which HD-DVD movies are a good showcase of the format. Thanks

The King Kong movie that comes with it. The movie itself is horrible (and loooong) but the graphics are out of this world. The scene with a close-up of Jack Black's face with dirt on it really shows the clarity and detail of high def DVDs.
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Dec 18, 2006, 10:25 PM
 
Thanks for the suggestions, Eug, that's a nice list based on quality.

I bought the 360 HD-DVD drive tonight with King Kong (came with it), The Corpse Bride, Troy, The Last Samurai, and Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas.
I watched a little of The Corpse Bride (since I have it on DVD) and I was shocked at how good HD-DVD looks.
As a little test we put the DVD in our Samsung HDMI 'upscaling' DVD player and paused it on a scene*, paused the HD-DVD on the same scene, and flipped between them. We're both really impressed. The level of detail is so noticeable.

I'm impressed
     
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Dec 18, 2006, 10:53 PM
 
Good to know, I can't wait to get one of these myself. Here's hoping Santa listened.
     
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Dec 18, 2006, 10:57 PM
 
Originally Posted by mdc View Post
As a little test we put the DVD in our Samsung HDMI 'upscaling' DVD player and paused it on a scene*, paused the HD-DVD on the same scene, and flipped between them. We're both really impressed. The level of detail is so noticeable.
Funny, I did exactly the same thing with the Blu-ray version of Corpse Bride. It's a very eye-opening comparison. This was the first Blu-ray movie I had seen for which I also owned the DVD, and I was surprised at the difference. Of course there is the difference in sharpness, but also the colors on the Blu-ray version seemed much more vivid. It impressed me enough to make me buy a few more movies.
     
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Dec 19, 2006, 01:12 AM
 
Originally Posted by icruise View Post
Funny, I did exactly the same thing with the Blu-ray version of Corpse Bride. It's a very eye-opening comparison. This was the first Blu-ray movie I had seen for which I also owned the DVD, and I was surprised at the difference. Of course there is the difference in sharpness, but also the colors on the Blu-ray version seemed much more vivid. It impressed me enough to make me buy a few more movies.
I was playing at the Sony Style store yesterday, and they had a bunch of test movies... I was amazed with Black Hawk Down.
     
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Dec 19, 2006, 10:40 AM
 
Originally Posted by icruise View Post
Funny, I did exactly the same thing with the Blu-ray version of Corpse Bride. It's a very eye-opening comparison. This was the first Blu-ray movie I had seen for which I also owned the DVD, and I was surprised at the difference. Of course there is the difference in sharpness, but also the colors on the Blu-ray version seemed much more vivid. It impressed me enough to make me buy a few more movies.
Ya corpse is an AMAZING transfer. The blacks* in it are crisp and perfect.

*Blacks meaning black levels and shadow detail.

I also got X3. Stupid movie but it looks nice. Underworld is also a very good transfer.

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Dec 19, 2006, 10:50 AM
 

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Dec 19, 2006, 11:46 AM
 
How much do BD-Rs cost?
     
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Dec 19, 2006, 11:50 AM
 
Originally Posted by icruise View Post
How much do BD-Rs cost?
Way too much (as do HD DVD-Rs). $15-30 for BD-R SL and $15-25 for HD DVD-R SL.
     
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Dec 19, 2006, 11:57 AM
 
Originally Posted by Eug Wanker View Post
Way too much (as do HD DVD-Rs). $15-30 for BD-R SL and $15-25 for HD DVD-R SL.
It will drop really quick though. I remember when DVD-R DL shipped they were outrageously expensive but within 6-8 months they went way down.

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Dec 19, 2006, 12:46 PM
 
Originally Posted by Dark Helmet View Post
It will drop really quick though. I remember when DVD-R DL shipped they were outrageously expensive but within 6-8 months they went way down.
I'd be surprised to see top tier quality HD DVD-R or BD-R commonly under US$5 before 2008.
     
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Dec 19, 2006, 12:48 PM
 
Originally Posted by Eug View Post
I'd be surprised to see top tier quality HD DVD-R or BD-R commonly under US$5 before 2008.
$10 is worth it for me to get 50 gigs.

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Dec 19, 2006, 12:50 PM
 
Originally Posted by Dark Helmet View Post
$10 is worth it for me to get 50 gigs.
I'd be surprised to see top tier quality 50GB BD-R commonly under US$10 before 2008.
     
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Dec 19, 2006, 12:58 PM
 
Originally Posted by Eug View Post
I'd be surprised to see top tier quality 50GB BD-R commonly under US$10 before 2008.
If I say $15 is worth it are you going to say "I'd be surprised to see top tier quality 50GB BD-R commonly under US$15 before 2008"?

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Dec 19, 2006, 01:01 PM
 
Top tier quality 50 GB commonly under $15 by 2008 might be possible. It seems $20 might be a more reasonable target though.
     
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Dec 19, 2006, 07:55 PM
 
Originally Posted by Eug View Post
Top tier quality 50 GB commonly under $15 by 2008 might be possible. It seems $20 might be a more reasonable target though.
I'll be surprised if they're not $20 for a stack of 25 by this time next year.

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Dec 19, 2006, 08:06 PM
 
Originally Posted by mrtew View Post
I'll be surprised if they're not $20 for a stack of 25 by this time next year.
It's hard finding even (top quality) 8.5 GB DVD-R for that price consistently.

Mediocre quality media is worthless IMO.
     
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Dec 20, 2006, 04:55 AM
 
I think its amusing the PS3 is being tauted as this great Blu-Ray player slash video games, media player et.all. So is the greater wisdom in buying something that's a jack-of-all-trades master-of-none or something that does one thing excellent? Years ago, I remember the heated discussions on this forum when the iPod did exactly one thing (play music) and the defense was that it didn't need to be the color, contact, picture, video thing it has become. And heck all that music focus for $499.

I think Home Theater Enthuisiasts (does not automatically equal computer literate BTW) would want something high-end for their system of components that are probably priced much more than Blu-Rays are (and probably some Macs). Some of these people develop whole rooms based on their love of cinema that cost thousands of dollars. These will be the early adopters while home theater amateurs (lack of better term) will wait for price reduction because they are used to having a $200 or so pricepoint for components.

I have used the PS2 for a backup DVD player and it's no great thing. If I was someone invested in this technology I would buy something that supports the sort of highend programmable remote one of these entuisiasts is likely to have instead of juggling a couple pieces of equipment.

The funny thing is that many peoples systems at the HTA level will not support 1080p anyway as the majority of product out there is 720/1080i or lower (surely based on size of screen 1080 is just coming around to smaller less, expensive TV sizes). If I am correct doesn't the PS3 still downgrade the HD to 480 if you do not indeed have a 1080p TV? There are some negatives to consider besides price.
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Dec 20, 2006, 05:15 AM
 
Originally Posted by drmcnutt View Post
I think its amusing the PS3 is being tauted as this great Blu-Ray player slash video games, media player et.all. So is the greater wisdom in buying something that's a jack-of-all-trades master-of-none or something that does one thing excellent?
While I generally agree that a device that is created for a particular purpose is better than something that tries to do several things, I don't think that concept can be applied in every case. Is your computer a mediocre "jack of all trades" because it allows you to listen to music and surf the net and do word processing? Aside from the issue of the remote control, I don't really see how the PS3 is any less capable than a standalone player. And the fact that it can be used as a movie player certainly doesn't affect its performance as a game machine in the slightest.

Of course, this is all temporary. Just as few people use their PS2s today as their main DVD player, once Bluray players get down to a reasonable price range, there probably won't be any reason to continue using the PS3 to watch movies. But in the meantime, it allows people who are interested both in games and HD movies an easy way to do both.

The funny thing is that many peoples systems at the HTA level will not support 1080p anyway as the majority of product out there is 720/1080i or lower (surely based on size of screen 1080 is just coming around to smaller less, expensive TV sizes). If I am correct doesn't the PS3 still downgrade the HD to 480 if you do not indeed have a 1080p TV? There are some negatives to consider besides price.
You are mistaken. If the PS3 downgraded to 480p for anyone without a 1080p-compatible TV, almost no one would be able to use it in high-def. The issue only affects older TVs that *only* support 480p and 1080i (in other words, TVs that don't support 720p at all). When using a game that only supports 720p on these TVs, the PS3 downscales to 480p instead of upscaling to 1080i. This is still a significant issue and I hope that Sony fixes it, but it's not nearly as big an issue as you imply.
     
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Dec 20, 2006, 09:06 AM
 
Originally Posted by icruise View Post
You are mistaken. If the PS3 downgraded to 480p for anyone without a 1080p-compatible TV, almost no one would be able to use it in high-def. The issue only affects older TVs that *only* support 480p and 1080i (in other words, TVs that don't support 720p at all). When using a game that only supports 720p on these TVs, the PS3 downscales to 480p instead of upscaling to 1080i. This is still a significant issue and I hope that Sony fixes it, but it's not nearly as big an issue as you imply.
1080p movie playback is fine at 1080i. No 720p support though AFAIK.

The huge issue is 720p games, because there is no 1080i support for 720p games..
     
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Dec 20, 2006, 09:28 AM
 
Originally Posted by Eug Wanker View Post
The huge issue is 720p games, because there is no 1080i support for 720p games..
Isn't that what I said?
     
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Dec 20, 2006, 10:22 AM
 
Just clarifying that it's mainly an issue with games. Some people have claimed this would affect movies as well, but for the most part, it doesn't.

EDIT:

Warner comments (at The Digital Bits) on why their Blu-ray titles have lagged:
We've also finally heard back from Warner per our high-def inquiry from early last week. We've spoken today with Warner Home Video's VP of HD Media Development, Dan Silverberg, about the studio's support of both the HD-DVD and Blu-ray Disc formats moving forward. Here's what he had to say:

"WHV's objective is to have triple day and date releases for all new theatrical titles on DVD, HD DVD and Blu-ray Disc. We began this with The Lake House and more recently Superman Returns and Ant Bully. As for our catalog titles, we would like to have simultaneous HD DVD and Blu-ray Disc releases. Again, this is something we have done recently with National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation and A Christmas Story, and will be doing with Scooby-Doo and Alexander: The Director's Cut, as well as recent DVD releases coming soon to high def like Wickerman and Beerfest, both being the unrated versions.

We also plan to make every effort to "catch-up" the 2006 titles currently only out on HD DVD with the Blu-ray versions in 2007. There are two reasons that the discrepancy exists. One has to do with the interactivity layer for BD with respect to picture-in-picture functionality. Some of our titles like Batman Begins and V for Vendetta have extensive interactive experiences and we don't want the Blu-ray consumer to have a "lesser" experience. We expect that this enhanced interactivity will be ready on the Blu-ray side soon. The other reason had to do with length of movies and the availability of 50 GB discs. That situation has already improved, as the releases of Unforgiven, Last Samurai and Goodfellas (1/16) show. We are also working on Enter the Dragon and a few others for early 2007 Blu-ray release as part of that "catching up" plan."
So as we all suspected, much of the lag has to do with:

1) The Blu-ray side couldn't get the interactivity tech right initially.
2) BD50 technology was not mature.
( Last edited by Eug; Dec 20, 2006 at 11:11 AM. )
     
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Dec 20, 2006, 12:36 PM
 
Toshiba do make excellent dvd players , though.

I have 3 x SD330e's dotted around the house and despite being budget machines , they've all behaved faultlessly for the last few years and really do have impressive picture and sound.

They may be only one manufacturer versus a multitude in the BR camp , but after the disaster's Sony has had in the last few years , I wouldn't write the big Tosh off quite so lightly.
     
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Dec 20, 2006, 12:49 PM
 
Originally Posted by mdc View Post
I haven't really been following this thread sorry.

Could anyone tell me what HD-DVD or BluRay movies would be good to get to showcase the format? I'm thinking of getting a player tonight.
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Dec 20, 2006, 12:52 PM
 
Originally Posted by eddiecatflap View Post
Toshiba do make excellent dvd players , though.
I had an old Toshiba dual-disc DVD player. No room in my pad, so I put it ontop of my TV. It fell off my 54" TV (plus 2 1/2 feet of speakers) onto concrete not once, not twice, but three times, and it still worked.

It finally died last year after 6 years after a friend tipped a potted plant and water spilled into it. It still worked for about a month after that, though.

I'll be getting another Toshiba player, that's for sure.
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Dec 20, 2006, 01:43 PM
 
Originally Posted by drmcnutt View Post
I think its amusing the PS3 is being tauted as this great Blu-Ray player slash video games, media player et.all. So is the greater wisdom in buying something that's a jack-of-all-trades master-of-none or something that does one thing excellent? Years ago, I remember the heated discussions on this forum when the iPod did exactly one thing (play music) and the defense was that it didn't need to be the color, contact, picture, video thing it has become. And heck all that music focus for $499.
The problem with saying the PS3 is "a jack of all trades" and "master of none" is that it is an amazing video game console. It can also output HD video VERY well (as good as a $1000+ player).

I will admit that the no remote and no IR is a bit odd (and if you really want that, I can see a person being very upset that Sony didn't include a $3 piece of hardware to accomodate those of us that have universal remotes), but I wouldn't call the 1080p output it gives "jack of all trade" quality.

I feel some of the anti PS3 people are trying to downgrade the quality offered by the PS3 witht he "jack of all trade" comments.

Originally Posted by drmcnutt View Post
I think Home Theater Enthuisiasts (does not automatically equal computer literate BTW) would want something high-end for their system of components that are probably priced much more than Blu-Rays are (and probably some Macs). Some of these people develop whole rooms based on their love of cinema that cost thousands of dollars. These will be the early adopters while home theater amateurs (lack of better term) will wait for price reduction because they are used to having a $200 or so pricepoint for components.
The thing is, if you can live with the limitations of the remote, the PS3 does ourput high-end audio and video.

I'm in NO WAY saying the PS3 is a perfect match for everyone, and would agree that most people building a room for a Home Theater would want to go in a different direction, the PS3 offers a solid platform to build your Blu-Ray movie library. Also, many enthusiasts may want to go this direction until the BD players come down in price.

Originally Posted by drmcnutt View Post
I have used the PS2 for a backup DVD player and it's no great thing. If I was someone invested in this technology I would buy something that supports the sort of highend programmable remote one of these entuisiasts is likely to have instead of juggling a couple pieces of equipment.
The PS2 is a poor DVD player, I agree 100%, but that does not mean that the PS3 will be of the same poor quality. Various online review show that it is a VERY GOOD HD player.

Originally Posted by drmcnutt View Post
The funny thing is that many peoples systems at the HTA level will not support 1080p anyway as the majority of product out there is 720/1080i or lower (surely based on size of screen 1080 is just coming around to smaller less, expensive TV sizes). If I am correct doesn't the PS3 still downgrade the HD to 480 if you do not indeed have a 1080p TV? There are some negatives to consider besides price.
I'm in no way saying the PS3 is the perfect system for everybody or every sutiation. What I'm saying is for ~$550 you get a very high end game console and a good movie player. I guess I see this as one of the few times you will get $900 worht of hardware for under $600.
     
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Dec 20, 2006, 01:43 PM
 
I agree , tbh , when I compare the output of my 330 versus an xbox 360 w/ hd dvd I CAN see a difference , obviously , but considering the inherent limitations of dvd , the performance of the Toshiba really is VERY impressive.

One can only imagine the jaw dropping brilliance of the Toshiba HD-EX1 that us limey's are promised early next year !
     
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Dec 20, 2006, 01:50 PM
 
CNET sayz get a PS3 over this stand alone player:

Philips BDP9000 Review: You're Better Off with a PS3 - Gizmodo

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Dec 21, 2006, 03:25 PM
 
Originally Posted by Dark Helmet View Post
CNET sayz get a PS3 over this stand alone player:

Philips BDP9000 Review: You're Better Off with a PS3 - Gizmodo
The review basically says you get the same content from a PS3 for less, not that the PS3 is "better".

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Dec 21, 2006, 03:33 PM
 
Originally Posted by Eriamjh View Post
The review basically says you get the same content from a PS3 for less, not that the PS3 is "better".
Cheaper sounds "better" to me.

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Dec 21, 2006, 03:37 PM
 
Originally Posted by Dark Helmet View Post
Cheaper sounds "better" to me.
The problem though is that "cheaper" ≠ "cheap", and there's still that issue of IR support on the PS3. ie. It's "better" because it's cheaper but it's not better because it's better. (That said, the PS3 is better in that it supports some of the other audio formats.)

If I were to get a Blu-ray player, I'd probably prefer a standalone, but not at those prices.

Personally, I'm hoping for a $200 universal player come 2008.
     
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Dec 21, 2006, 06:35 PM
 
Has anyone read anything explaining how they went about choosing the box design for the two high-def video formats? Both HD-DVD and Blu-ray seem to have more or less the same design (thinner, shorter box) with the obvious difference being the color (blue for Blu-ray and burgundy for HD-DVD). I'm interested to know what the rationale was behind the decision, and how both formats ended up with essentially the same design. Presumably they wanted something that was easily distinguishable from normal DVDs, but I wonder how they chose this particular size and shape.
     
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Dec 21, 2006, 06:58 PM
 
It's bothersome that they changed the size of the box. I don't mind the color since the xbox is green, the 360 is a brighter green, Wii is white, etc, but they are all the same size. Even the Gamecube which has tiny disks.
They're all the same size, therefore they all fit in DVD racks.

HD-DVD and BluRay come along and they don't fit in my DVD rack. Very annoying.
     
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Dec 21, 2006, 08:10 PM
 
The cases appear to be modified 'super jewel box' casings that have been in use in DVD-Audio and AOL discs for awhile now.

In fact, the blu-ray cases look nearly identical to DVD-Audio cases:
     
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Dec 21, 2006, 08:10 PM
 
Originally Posted by mdc View Post
It's bothersome that they changed the size of the box. I don't mind the color since the xbox is green, the 360 is a brighter green, Wii is white, etc, but they are all the same size. Even the Gamecube which has tiny disks.
They're all the same size, therefore they all fit in DVD racks.

HD-DVD and BluRay come along and they don't fit in my DVD rack. Very annoying.
Completely agree.

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Dec 22, 2006, 12:00 AM
 
I like the fact that the boxes are smaller. In fact, I wish they were even smaller.

I also like the initial HD DVD boxes which had the "feet" on them. The newer ones don't have them for some reason.
     
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Dec 22, 2006, 04:39 PM
 
Originally Posted by Dark Helmet View Post
If the PS3 supports more disk types, HDMI 1.3, faster start up, better picture and is smaller, can I ask why you wanted to pay twice as much for the samsung?

Is the fact that is is a game system scare you enough to paying $500 more but get less?
1) Paid $699 for the player
2) PS3 wasn't out when I bought the player. Had it connected to a 55" HD-RPTV before the projector
3) Wouldn't have bought the PS3 for this purpose anyway - won't be playing games at all on this system
4) The newest firmware on my Samsung player is quite responsive; little lag at all like the first models
     
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Dec 22, 2006, 04:50 PM
 
Cyberlink's $99 PowerDVD Ultra enables HD DVD and Blu-ray on your PC

Dual core processor, 512MB of RAM, 256MB of video RAM, HDCP for any digital connections and of course an HD DVD or Blu-ray drive (the Xbox 360 HD DVD drive is officially supported) are just the mininum requirements. NVIDIA PureVideo, ATI Avivo and Intel Clear Video hardware acceleration support should keep those h.264 and VC-1 encoded movies playing smoothly while Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD soundtracks play in 6.1 surround sound. Blu-ray Java and HDi interactive features are supported, as well as UPnP streaming to compatible devices.

It sounds like you should be able to use VGA or component (if your computer supports it). It's interesting that they officially support the Xbox 360 HD DVD drive, considering that Microsoft itself doesn't even support it officially on Windows (even though it does work fine on Windows).

EDIT:

What does this mean?

Press Archive - CyberLink Launches PowerDVD Ultra for Playback of HD DVDs and Blu-ray Discs

"Support for BUS Protection ensures premium content protection via VGA systems."
     
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Dec 22, 2006, 05:31 PM
 
Originally Posted by Eug Wanker View Post
What does this mean?

Press Archive - CyberLink Launches PowerDVD Ultra for Playback of HD DVDs and Blu-ray Discs

"Support for BUS Protection ensures premium content protection via VGA systems."
Windows Vista will down sample DVDs over VGA. The monitor has to be HDCP certified.
"…I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than
you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods,
you will understand why I dismiss yours." - Stephen F. Roberts
     
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Dec 22, 2006, 05:41 PM
 
Originally Posted by olePigeon View Post
Windows Vista will down sample DVDs over VGA. The monitor has to be HDCP certified.
That's too bad. The Xbox 360 does NOT downsample HD DVD over VGA. It only downsamples over component. According to Microsoft, the rules don't specify that downsampling has to be turned on for VGA systems.
     
Eug
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Dec 28, 2006, 11:09 AM
 
AACS is unbreakable (video)

P.S. The video looks to be real, but it's not actually demonstrating anything really significant.
( Last edited by Eug; Dec 28, 2006 at 11:15 AM. )
     
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Dec 28, 2006, 11:43 AM
 
Originally Posted by Eug View Post
AACS is unbreakable (video)

P.S. The video looks to be real, but it's not actually demonstrating anything really significant.
If I'm not mistaken, that's the song 'Teahouse' from The Matrix Reloaded soundtrack.
     
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Dec 28, 2006, 08:42 PM
 
Originally Posted by Eug View Post
AACS is unbreakable (video)

P.S. The video looks to be real, but it's not actually demonstrating anything really significant.
More info
Electronista | Blu-Ray, HD DVD encryption already cracked?
     
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Dec 28, 2006, 08:47 PM
 
Originally Posted by Eug Wanker View Post
That's too bad. The Xbox 360 does NOT downsample HD DVD over VGA. It only downsamples over component. According to Microsoft, the rules don't specify that downsampling has to be turned on for VGA systems.
Well, I'd imagine that it wouldn't down-sample if the VGA monitor was HDCP compliant, but I don't know how that'd be possible since VGA is analogue. As far as I know, HDCP requires a digital connection and is restricted to DVI/HDMI.
"…I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than
you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods,
you will understand why I dismiss yours." - Stephen F. Roberts
     
 
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