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Old October 5th, 2004, 02:17 PM   #1
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HD-DVD player demoed

Just a quick blurb on a show demonstrator. http://www.pcworld.com/news/article/0,aid,118048,00.asp
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Old October 5th, 2004, 02:29 PM   #2
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Old October 5th, 2004, 02:43 PM   #3
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None of these units are backwards compatible with current DVD's are they? I suppose it would be too "costly" to incorporate both a blue and a red laser into them.
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Old October 5th, 2004, 04:07 PM   #4
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Actually HD-DVD should be backward compatible. Blu-Ray is a very different format and may not be backward compatible. HD-DVD disc can be produced on the same production line that makes current DVDs with a minimal change. It is expected that the production line can change over from one to the other in minutes.
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Old October 6th, 2004, 04:39 PM   #5
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First one to make backward compatible players wins the game, imo. There are people with large amounts of dvd's in their collection.
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Old October 6th, 2004, 09:36 PM   #6
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<<<-- Originally posted by Michael Struthers : First one to make backward compatible players wins the game, imo. There are people with large amounts of dvd's in their collection. -->>>

I think it's going to take more than simple backwards compatibility in players. In recent months, Sony has pulled out all the stops in generating Blu-Ray support from consumers, movie studios and the electronics industry.

Posted below is an article discussing recent industry support of the Blu-Ray format. Several of the major companies supporting Blu-Rau are Sony, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Hitachi, LG Electronics, Matsushita Electric Industrial (Panasonic), Mitsubishi Electric, Philips Electronics, Pioneer Electronics, Samsung Electronics, Sharp, TDK, and Thomson Multimedia.
http://www.cdfreaks.com/news/10630

You're right though, Blu-Ray and/or HD-DVD will have to develop a player that is backward compatible with existing DVD technology or it will become nothing more than a niche product for the techno-geeks and home theater buffs.

Competition is starting to heat up though. In late September, the DVD Forum approved the physical disc specifications for the rewritable version of HD-DVDs. They anticipate HD-DVD players will be available to the consumer in late 2005 and priced below 1000 dollars.
http://www.pcworld.com/news/article/0,aid,117983,pg,1,RSS,RSS,00.asp

At the present moment though, I think Sony has the edge in getting Blu-Ray adopted. Several reasons, in addition to the first link posted above are: First, Sony has announced its intent to install Blu-Ray players into the next generation of Sony PlayStation 3 consoles. By default, thousands of gamers will have a Blu-Ray player installed and ready to use with their HDTVs (should they have one). Second, while HD-DVD is cheaper and easier to produce, the additional storage capability (15 to 30GB) is not significant enough IMO for most consumers to desire the change from their current DVD options. Blu-Ray on the other hand has 25 to 50 GB of storage space on its disk. With HDV right around the corner, the more disk space the better. And if that wasn’t enough, they are also developing a future disk pushing that amount up to 200 GB! Third, Blu-Ray already has several players currently on the market in Japan. It will only be a matter of time before players reach the US and elsewhere (my guess is sometime in mid-2005).

Well, that's my take on it. Of course, I could be wrong.
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Old October 7th, 2004, 03:04 AM   #7
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Yes i feel Blu-Ray is the smarter option. i'm really sick of these baby side steps all these companies are forcing consumers to take. i dont want to buy players and recorders and cams and burners and whatever else every 6 months when its only a small incrementle gain. I'd much prefer they release quality at one level... then work on creating something which gives us more to upgrade to. like paul's example of DVD to HD-DVD, sure its a fair jump in capacity but why bother when you can go to Blu-Ray and have a real gain and one thats much more suited to the future with storage demand increases.

As Backwards compatibility... i think its less ofa drama then what it gets made out to be. look at DVD burners.. every single one of them not only reads CD's but also burns them. Thats the least of the worries. just slap in the hardware to make it read 'old' stuff. Synch! I can actually remember reading about the Playstation 3 being backwards compatible with DVD's (Sony's stance is positive for legacy gear, PS1 in PS2 for example) even though it shaping up to be a Blu-Ray machine (go Sony i say!!! They cant seem to put a foot wrong ever since there foray into the consold market, and to me it seems logical that this will be another winning choice).

i dont nkow about you guys... but even SD DTV consumes my hard drive space like its going out of fashion. Even if i only record 4 TV Shows a week thats about 12GB/week (and i dont watch a lot of TV so i'm far from a heavy user in that regard)!



PS. I thought i also remember readong Blu-Ray was backwards compatible in one of those Sony Blu-Ray recorders they actaully have on the market in Japan or where ever it was (i seen pics with it etc and it said it was backwards compatible with DVDs and CDs to, i'll have to find that again). :)
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Old October 7th, 2004, 04:36 PM   #8
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Quote:
2.4 Will Blu-ray support playback of DVDs?

Yes, several leading drive manufacturers have already demonstrated drives for consumer products such as video recorders that can read and write DVD and Blu-ray Discs, so you don't have to worry about your existing DVD collection becoming obsolete. Although there is no requirement for Blu-ray recorders to be backwards compatible with DVD, the format is far too popular to not be supported. With the vast amount of Blu-ray recorders that will be coming out, this will be an important feature for consumers.
According to the Blu-Ray official website, Blu-Ray is backward compatible with mainstream DVD.

Panasonic already has a Blu-Ray player out in Japan that plays and records DVDs!

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Old October 7th, 2004, 05:14 PM   #9
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yeah i new i wasnt going mad :P
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Old October 7th, 2004, 09:44 PM   #10
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I saw that the makers of DVD (and now HD DVD) said in Mac World magazine, I believe, that the HD DVD format opens the doors to blu ray, red ray, H.264 and WM9 HD. We REALLY need one format, NOT so many...ARGH!

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Old October 8th, 2004, 11:37 AM   #11
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I agree, I see another DVD-A vs SACD type war coming where you pay extra to have all these formats in one player.
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Old October 8th, 2004, 12:15 PM   #12
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I am sure Blu-Ray playes will incorporate red lasers for DVD viewing as well, so I really wouldn't worry about this too much.
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Old October 8th, 2004, 12:28 PM   #13
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<<<-- Originally posted by Joe Carney : I see another DVD-A vs SACD type war coming where you pay extra to have all these formats in one player. -->>>
-------------------------------------------------------------

And as a result, the DVD-Audio and SACD war has only confused customers and ultimately has hurt bringing a new format into acceptance.

If high definition is to have any chance at being successful, all electronic industry parties involved (including the movie studios) need to come to a resolution and pick one format as they did with DVD and the compact disc. To the average consumer, DVD is already high quality. To throw at them Blu-Ray, HD-DVD and WM9 and expect the general public to figure it all out is insane. Most consumers will simply reject all the formats and stay with their current DVD players (as they have done with CDs over the higher quality DVD-A and SACD).

Not to mention that without a unity of effort towards one common HD standard, it will only slow down new products (i.e. high definition movies, players, and recorders) coming to market.
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Old October 9th, 2004, 08:04 AM   #14
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Paul,

AMEN!

These good points you note are also more reasons to make the new format a major jump forward in quality and features etc. Do it once.. do it right. And make the damn thing worth UPGRADING to. Then consumers (and not just tech heads) will have a reason and a desire/want to buy into a newer format.
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Old October 9th, 2004, 10:02 PM   #15
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guys i think that no matter what happens now the next generation of DVDs (whether B-DVD or HD-DVD) is going to be rejected by consumers. why? if it ain't broke why fix it? most consumers don't see a problem with DVDs out today. why go through the hassle and upgrade for marginal (to their eyes) quality?

whether B-DVD or HD-DVD is backwards compatible or not is irrelevent. the question is are consumers able to tell the difference between regular DVD pic quality and HD-level DVD quality? imho i don't think so. perhaps if you did A/B but not if you watch one, stop and then watch the other. i don't think they are sophisticated enough to. i think the next gen DVDs will be current DVDs what Laserdiscs were to VHS, an 'elite' hobby.

that's exactly the situation with SACD/DVD-audio nowadays. it's one of those snobby hobbies. you don't see the HUGE difference going from tape or vinyl to CDs. from CDs to DVD-audio no regular average joe can tell the difference... except in surround sound... but how many cars now are rigged with it? most people spend time listening to music in the car not at home anymore. as soon as SACD/DVD-audio players are available for the car along with 7.1 speakers the format will be huge. that's one of the factors for CD's success as well, when the automobile could playback CDs, the format really exploded.
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