Sunday, August 19, 2007

I'm Calling For A Grass Roots Effort To Support Blu-Ray

HD-DVD is lingering like a bad smell and it's hurting the next generation of home video. Blu-Ray's dominance is not only inevitable, it's preferable, but the struggle is being dragged out longer and longer and more and more people are investing in HD-DVD technology that is not only currently inferior, it's (relatively) shortly going to be obsolete.

I think we need to engineer a grass roots effort to spread the word about Blu-Ray and drive a nail or two into HD-DVD's coffin. Admittedly, it's going to take a lot more nails than we could provide, but I'm sure every little bit will help.

And please, think twice before investing in any HD-DVD discs. You will regret it.

I wish I could guarantee you that you won't regret shelling out for Blu-Ray, but I can't. The whole generation might be skipped over if this stupid 'war' can't be wrapped up soon.

I've posted an article below that lays the blame for this meaningless war at Microsoft's feet - click upon it to expand it.

For the record, I've got no time for either Microsoft or Sony and their willingness to sell consumers down the river for a quick buck, but it doesn't take too much research to see which of the disc formats trumps the other.


Mark H Wilkinson said...

Personally, I'll wait till some format evidences market dominance before shifting from ye olde DVD. Cautious to the point of gutlessness, perhaps, but at least I won't end up like one of those bitter grumpies who still bemoan the passing of Betamax.

Brendon said...

Blu-Ray are actually showing all signs of dominacne but one. They've sold more players, more units, have more studio exclusive deals...

They just don't get anything from Universal.

And that's why I want the war to end.

And this is my small attempt to play a tiny part in that.

Mark H Wilkinson said...

I was thinking of dominance more in terms of when "ordinary" DVDs stop being the default format of videos. We didn't join the CD era in our house until it was clear vinyl was on its way out.

(Mind you, we didn't have a colour telly in our house until 1981...)

Anonymous said...

There's no reason to invest in either format. A decent upconvert player (an Oppo, for instance) on most TVs will give a "close enough" solution. In the meanwhile, this entire generation of HD and Blu-Ray will be the Super Audio/SACD fight all over again -- two technologies competing to win a niche no one wants. The overall uptake numbers on either format are miniscule compared to standard DVD and digital downloading, and I'd wager that high-def digital downloads will quickly leapfrong over any format on a disc.

(Besides, the fact that DVD CSS has been cracked will make DVD the open-format archival medium of choice for ages to come.)

Anonymous said...

This is such a ridiculous argument, no format will win out, this ain't the days of the VCR. Both formats will exist because the market is so huge that those who want blu-ray will buy it, and the same goes for those who want HDDVD. Image quality does not suffer on either, as resolution is the same on both, it's just the amount of info you can pack on to a disk. Companies do not desire single format technologies. It's such a short term argument anyway as we won't be using disk formats in a few years, as hard drives become smaller and cheaper.

Brendon said...

The age of DVD wasn't the age of VCR either, but it still trumped rival formats. Notably that DivX disc set up that Dreamworks Antz was apparently a flagship for.

I bet HD-DVD withdraw in about 18 months.

I just wish they'd do it now and get the Blu-Ray machine rolling quickly.

And I know downloads are imminent. Just not that imminent.

droidguy1119 said...

Until downloads can be done through TV I don't think downloads are gonna catch on. I don't think people enjoy watching movies on their computers, nor endless fiddling-with of settings to make things look sound and play right, especially if they have super nice plasma TVs. People keep calling downloads the way of the future but in my materialistic, greedy, all-my-life ways, I currently and expect I will always prefer going to a store, plunking down my cash and getting a thing to take home and put on the shelf and have, to prove I bought it.

I work at Best Buy and I talk people out of buying HD-DVD players. Most of the people buying it just say "It was cheaper" and I tell them to wait until Christmas or after to make a decision, and I think Blu Ray, at least through PS3, will be stomping the competition during the holidays. Also worth noting: I've only had one customer say to me straight up that they think HD-DVD is better than Blu-Ray. Most customers have both and seem to have already heard the writing on the wall, or are Blu-Ray supporters.

Anonymous said...

Brendon, how is Blu-ray better ?


Brendon said...

The maximum potential amount of data on a Blu-Ray disc is far in excess of that on a HD disc, that's one thing.

That more studios have already backed Blu-Ray over HD-DVD is another.

The BD-Live functionality is brilliant is another.

The digital bits have a much more comprehensive run down of why Blu-Ray is the ultimate winner, and why this is a good thing:

marine said...

I'd support blu-ray if they were to get rid of the archaic region codes. It's the 21st century, do they really need something that does nothing but push customers into legal grey areas.

Anonymous said...

I couldn't agree more, Bluray is obviously better in all areas and should become the dominant format ASAP, just a shame there's always a few individuals who feel compelled to support the "underdog" regardless of whether it's worthy of their support or not.

Also, I won't be able to own Heroes on Bluray because those bastards Universal own NBC. Everything else will be available on BR but just the fact that I can't get Heroes makes me want it that much more.

iransofaraway said...

This was enough for me to decide never to buy a Blu-ray player:

The format war in generally is pretty frakkin' lame. Way to screw over consumers!

Brendon said...

That YouTube clips shos one problem with one player on one title.

The birth of DVD was equally fraught with bugs and issues, if not more so.

Why anybody would spend over a grand on a player right now I have no idea. There are much cheaper ones available.

DWall45 said...

Paramount & DreamWorks decided to go HD DVD exclusively today.

Brendon said...

Then I sincerely advise nobody to buy either.

This sort of exploitation should be punished.

Anonymous said...

It won't make a difference to image quality on either because all new films will be tranferred at the same HD res. and both formats support it.

Anonymous said...

"The age of DVD wasn't the age of VCR either, but it still trumped rival formats. Notably that DivX disc set up that Dreamworks Antz was apparently a flagship for."

I don't know or heard anyone who even had that divx set-up so it was always a non-runner unlike beta or vhs. There was never any competition for DVD.

Anonymous said...

I'm not buying either. I've spent the last five years developing a respectable DVD collection. I don't feel like going through that crap again! As it was, I bought widescreen for longevity (And later because I want to see the whole frame). Eventually I would get a television on which it mattered.

I'll go with upconversion for a while until I know if we're just going to download anyway.

Brendon said...

If image res was the only thing that mattered to picture quality then all DVDs would look equally good.

Compression is a key issue. The extra space on Blu-Ray is very important.