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Old May 20th, 2005, 09:05 AM   #1
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The winner of the HD distribution race will be...

WMV on a standard DVD!

Let's face it, if Xbox 360 plays HD WMV files from a standard DVD everybody wins, especially if other DVD manufacturers make HD WMV capable players. Not only will we not have to buy new and expensive burners, but it is easy for manufacturers of commercial DVDs too. After all some films already come with a HD WMV version on another disc.

If other manufacturers made more DVD players that played HD WMV the Blu-Ray vs HD-DVD race would be dead in the water, despite the two formats being capable of much higher bitrate pictures.

Now despite my hesitation regarding the speed of uptake as seen in another thread, if Xbox-360 does put its foot in the door by allowing people to view their existing Imax etc HD WMV versions on their HDTV sets, they may well demand more films this way. Such films will be much cheaper to manufacture, and much cheaper for consumers to purchase than any new HD-DVD or Blu-Ray format. Plus the Xbox 360 will be available long before any truely widespread Blu-Ray or HD-DVD players. Cheaper, more convienient, and allows people like us to make HD versions of our products without buying new burners, or requesting any new expensive replication processes at duplication houses.

As I mentioned, Blu-Ray and HD-DVD will ultimately be capable of much higher quality pictures than a WMV disc. However as we have seen from past experience the highest quality product isn't usually the one that wins out.

Do we actually need Blu-Ray or HD-DVD as the next gen HD film distribution format?
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Old May 20th, 2005, 09:29 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Simon Wyndham

Do we actually need Blu-Ray or HD-DVD as the next gen HD film distribution format?
Need? No. Want? Probably.

Disc capacity as it relates to storage and bitrate capabilities is only part of the story.
The real revolution with Blu-Ray/HD-DVD will be the ability for multiple, simultaneous data layers. The single page menu confinement will be replaced by a web-like interface. There is already talk of broadband connnectivity through the next gen of DVD players. The interactivity of the new DVD standard will make for exciting viewing, and will be irresistable to sellers who want to market more services and products through their DVD's, for instance.

You just can't do this under current DVD standards.
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Old May 20th, 2005, 09:43 AM   #3
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oops reposted
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Old May 20th, 2005, 09:48 AM   #4
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The powers that be are pushing the new HD DVD formats in part because they want to be able to deliver HD content, to be sure. But I think the bigger benefit for them is that they want to get a format that has more security and anti-piracy than current DVDs. I believe the WMV format would be less secure, rather than more.

And as Adam said, having a format with a richer operating environment is going to let them expand greatly. If they are smart, the new formats will be able to link directly in to online content and people will be able to buy things by clicking through on their DVD menu. People buying things (not just the DVD) is what would motivate a lot of decisions.

That all said, Bill's a smart guy who likes to sell things. This may all be wrapped in to the XBox 360... will be interesting to see.
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Old May 20th, 2005, 10:27 AM   #5
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Ahh but, we already know that Xbox 360 plays HD WMV, and you can buy HD WMV films already.

The industry may have one idea on how they want to do things, and that new menu system etc on Blu-Ray sounds brilliant. However as we know consumers often have a way of telling companies how *they* want things.

I guess my main point is that if Xbox 360 plays HD WMV out of the box from the very beginning, it will be a long while before Blu-Ray and HD-DVD players come about in any numbers. PS3 will be released after XB 360, and although it has Blu-Ray will there be any Blu Ray movies available at that time? Currently there are already WMV movies available, and I would suspect the take-up of XB360 will be higher and faster than any stand alone DVD player. Perhaps enough of an uptake to pursuade the electronics firms to support WMV from a standard DVD even on their new HD players. This would mean that the likes of you and me can create easily distributable movies without having to buy new burners and software.

Look at the number of players that support DIVX and MP3 now. HD WMV support would just be an extension of this sort of support, and one that could become very popular for indies.
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Old May 28th, 2005, 02:23 AM   #6
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I think you are onto something big here...


How can we capitalize on it and make $$$?

What are the options?
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Old May 28th, 2005, 02:04 PM   #7
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The next-gen HD distribution: H.264 on Blu-Ray at 10-20mbps at 4:2:2. Sony might end this war with this format because if you have H.264 HD decoding and MPEG-2 HD decoding, you can view all the new HD disk formats, It will be called: Blu-Ray Video+(Plus). Same disc, better codec! (just in case you like WMV-HD, just insert the disc and (if there is DRM) with permission (which I doubt there will be any) will allow conversion of WMV to H.264 to Blu-Ray Video+ only to HDD but not back to Blu-ray Video+ (unless it's not DRMed))

See how my brain is full of ideas?
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Old May 28th, 2005, 03:44 PM   #8
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HD DVD and Blu Ray will coexist and meanwhile smaller universal disc will developed with H.264 encoding but as comes to marketplace even smaller solid state memory will become cost effective and replace small disc only to be soon replaced by magnetized 1000,0000,0000 GB ants.

Radek
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