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Old February 16th, 2009, 11:26 AM   #1
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Blu-ray from DVCPRO HD

I'm beginning to rethink my lack of enthusiasm for Blu-ray, so I would like someone to offer to sell me a high-quality Blu-ray disc that they have authored from DVCPRO HD using Blu-ray software that costs less than $ 1000, preferably from 720 p video. I'll pre-pay for the disc and the shipping, and will test it at a Best Buy store to see how it looks compared to DVCPRO HD recorded on my camera and played back via the component out jack.
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Old February 16th, 2009, 11:32 AM   #2
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Right, because we all know Best Buy is where it's at for proper monitor calibration... :) Why not just take the plunge and start rolling your own instead? Blu-Ray is pretty much the only consumer HD physical media solution for the time being, so go ahead and get in on the ground floor.

Noah
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Old February 16th, 2009, 12:16 PM   #3
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Actually, I've found that the people at Best Buy are happy to let you test your own video on some of their highest quality equipment, which is far better than what most of your customers have at home. Still looking for someone to supply me with a home-grown high quality Blu-ray.
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Old February 16th, 2009, 12:58 PM   #4
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(This should be moved to an appropriate category as this has nothing to do with DVCPRO_HD)

Noah's suggestion is spot-on: You should get onboard with whatever BR authoring software fits your budget and start learning how to get this done.

It doesn't matter what format/codec the camera-originals are, it's all about how well the encoding process is achieved. You can have equally good looking BR from DV100, XDCAM, HDV etc... even upressed DV25 can look decent on BR if it's done properly (especially from a hardware encoder).

Keep in mind there are NO options for optical high-definition delivery currently, it's BR or back to SDDVD-widescreen.

Also, regardless if it's Win or Mac-based BR authoring is extremely limited and is not any more advanced than what you can find on iDVD currently with respect to options. The only full BR authoring apps are either Sony Blu-Print or Scenarist, both of which are still big-studio budget items and until Apple, Adobe or somebody finally brings the technology down to the DVDSP level we're stuck with these "mini authoring" apps.

Get the stuff and jump in.
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Old February 16th, 2009, 03:21 PM   #5
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Sorry Robert, but I'm not convinced. I'm not convinced that Blu-ray is the future, I'm not convinced that we (or I) can author a Blu-ray with cheap software that will look good enough to make it worthwhile, and therefore I'm not convinced that it is worth my time or effort or money at this point to set up for Blu-ray. For me, this is only about DVCPRO HD, because that is what I shoot exclusively, and I would still ask that someone with a high quality 720p Blu-ray, authored by them from DVCPRO HD, contact me if they are willing to sell me a copy for evaluation of the status of Blu-ray.
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Old February 16th, 2009, 04:15 PM   #6
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Mark,

I think viability of Blu-ray is about customer adoption, not image quality.

Nobody will dispute that footage shot with any HD camera or codec and put on Blu-ray will put DVD to shame.

Adobe Encore is not that expensive.

I guess I don't understand where you discomfort is coming from.
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Old February 16th, 2009, 05:05 PM   #7
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No offense, but who's got the time/interest to make you a Blu-Ray just so you can go scrutinize it at Best Buy? What difference does it make to anyone but a Blu-Ray disc manufacturer whether you're convinced or not of its status. If it's so important to you to know- DIY. If/when your clients start requesting them you won't have much choice anyway. So might as well jump in now and get a head start on your competition. If that's not important to you right now, stick with what you're doing.

Blu-Ray is pretty much firmed up as a format. Does great authoring software exist, not really. Is it possible to make a Blu-Ray disc at the same level of encoding as any Hollywood disc you can buy in the store, absolutely. I've watched countless Blu-Ray supplemental features shot on DV, HDV, DVCPROHD etc. They all look about as good as you'd imagine the originals did. And as for the cheapness of software- that's in the eyes of the beholder. Is $799 for Adobe Encore plus $500-700 for a burner cheap? If so, then yes it's cheap.

-Noah

Last edited by Noah Kadner; February 16th, 2009 at 06:30 PM.
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Old February 16th, 2009, 05:24 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Noah Kadner View Post
No offense, but who's got take the time/interest to make you a Blu-Ray just so you can go scrutinize it it at Best Buy?
Bingo. But par for the course these days.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Noah Kadner View Post
Blu-Ray is pretty much firmed up as a format.
You mean, now that Hollywood has invested MILLIONS in the format, and is bringing their old archival footage forward (they didn't even do that for DVD). Yea, I'd say Blu-Ray is going to be around for quite some time. It'll progress and morph some, but blu-laser optical will be here for a while.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Noah Kadner View Post
Is it possible to make a Blu-Ray disc at the same level of encoding as any Hollywood disc you can buy in the store, absolutely. I've watched countless supplemental features shot on DV, HDV, DVCPROHD etc. They look about as good as you'd imagine the originals did.
I've rendered out a few pieces of my work to high-bitrate VC-1 and MP4 and it was essentially visually lossless. I'm very comfortable with the look.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Noah Kadner View Post
And as for the cheapness of software- that's in the eyes of the beholder. Is $799 for Adobe Encore plus $500-700 for a burner cheap? If so, then yes it's cheap.

-Noah
Dang, where are you shopping? I paid $399 for my portable burner back in June! Someone could buy Sony Vegas Pro, which comes with decent blu-ray authoring software for $599 I believe. And you could get a "free NLE" if you want to look at it that way.
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Old February 16th, 2009, 06:28 PM   #9
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Dang, where are you shopping?
Why Perrone, I'm shopping at Best Buy! Sorry but I just couldn't resist. (Can I get a rim-shot?) :) Thanks for the support though, I did not mean to be uncouth to the OP but I think you've hit the nail on the head.

-Noah
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Old February 16th, 2009, 11:07 PM   #10
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I give up. Chris - feel free to delete this whole thread. Dissenting opinion is clearly not tolerated by some members of this group - I'm sorry to have disturbed the status quo.
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Old February 16th, 2009, 11:32 PM   #11
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I give up. Chris - feel free to delete this whole thread. Dissenting opinion is clearly not tolerated by some members of this group - I'm sorry to have disturbed the status quo.
Dissenting opinion is just fine. Read my posts. I dissent a LOT.

However, asking someone to do your legwork for you because "you don't believe in the technology" as if someone needs to prove something to you, is above and beyond.

Hollywood is shipping Blu-Ray as fast as they possibly can. There is a world-wide shortage of blank dual-layer Blu-Ray discs as Hollywood demand is being met. The premium on them is over 100% right now.

You don't need us to convince you of Blu-Ray. The market should be doing that. My local Best Buy's Blu-Ray section is 10 times the size it was this time last year. Blu-Ray recorders are hovering around $299-$399. Players have dropped into the $250 range. The adoption of Blu-Ray is WELL ahead of where DVD was at the same point in it's history. The visual image is LIGHT YEARS ahead of DVD even with the rudimentary burners available.

If you want to see it, take a DVCProHD file, convert it to a 1920x1080 mp4 at 20-40 Mpbs, and do a difference on your timeline. When I did that, my preview screen went jet black, the waveform monitor dropped to -7, and the vectorscope and RGB parade went to nothing. That tells me the difference visually is essentially nothing. If I can't see a difference on the scopes, no way on EARTH anyone could see it with their eyes.

You'd have to be presenting a LOT more detail than DVCProHD offers to get any visual loss. I even did it with RED 4k footage and Cineform RAW, and visually there was no appreciable difference.

The SD TV standards have been with us since the 50s. Unless we change TV standards again, this format will take full advantage of the broadcast signal. Period.
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Old February 17th, 2009, 12:14 AM   #12
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Yeah geez- lighten up man. I thought we were pretty diplomatic...

Noah
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Old February 17th, 2009, 09:28 AM   #13
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Mark,

Although we understand the basis of your concern - that you don't believe good-looking BR can be done without the high-end tools - the simple point of fact is that unless you've got about $200k to invest in software, training and licensing there aren't any options other than those mentioned. Yet.

If you challenge the viability of BR and you don't want to spend the time and money to do what we have, test it and prove it for yourself, then you have 2 options:

1. Spend a day at one of the various seminars or workshops that are teaching how to author BR on the currently available tools and see for yourself firsthand. Then you can decide.

2. Give someone YOUR DVCPRO-HD footage and *hire them* to author a BR disc just as they would for any other paying client. Then you'll have your answer.

But offering to only cover media and shipping costs? That's lazy and inappropriate. As Perrone pointed out, nobody is going to do your legwork for you for free.
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Old February 17th, 2009, 02:58 PM   #14
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Robert - I think highly of you and will accept your comments as helpful. I certainly did not mean to imply that I wanted a special Blu-ray made just for me. Anyway, for info, there is another way to deliver HD content, using the Western Digital media player. It takes in JPEG or HD video files via USB from any external hard drive or thumb drive, and plays out HD video via a HDMI port to any HD TV. So far, I have only used it for JPEGs, and the quality is superb. It will be very useful to those who need to give slide shows or other presentations on an HD TV. The video end of it also works well, according to others who have used it, but I have no personal experience with it and video. It plays a number of different HD video file types including mpeg-2, avi, quicktime, and .TS, and it comes with a remote control which makes using it a breeze. I'll post more info on it later after I see how well it works.
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Old February 17th, 2009, 03:16 PM   #15
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Mark,

We are familiar with the WD unit. In fact, I'll be picking one up as it's PERFECT for doing proofs of work without having to burn a Blu-Ray. But several facts remain:

1. Playing an identical mp4, or VC-1 off the WD and Blu-Ray will yield not difference in how the material looks. It's not being compressed any more to be put on Blu-Ray, thus the video is exactly identical.

2. The WD unit comes with no media, so for presentations and such it's fine. But using it as a delivery method is problematic. Handing someone a hard drive as a delivery method is probably not going to go over well.

3. Hollywood is not going to start delivering movies via hard drive. They are going to do it via Blu-Ray. Thus people will come to accept that this is how "movies" are delivered to the home. It makes much more sense from a business perspective to follow Hollywood, rather than fight them.

A question. If I produce a 2 hour HD program can you outline the costs of delivering that on Blu-Ray versus doing it with the WD box? If I have to deliver a dozen or 2, like I was a wedding videographer, would that change the numbers?

Thanks,

-P
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