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post #721 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 07:43 AM
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Dan (or anyone else), how many devices are out there that can accept and display 1920x1080p?
Very few today.
In the FP world, $ony Qualia and Sharp z10000, z12000(accept but not fully resolve) come to mind.
Over the lifecycle of the new format (~2006 - 2016+) there should hopefully be many devices capable of resolving 1920 X 1080p.
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post #722 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 07:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by RobHT
Very few today.
In the FP world, $ony Qualia and Sharp z10000, z12000(accept but not fully resolve) come to mind.
The Sony accepts 1080i only, the Sharp is a 1280x720p DLP unit.
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post #723 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 08:04 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally posted by Wendell R. Breland
Dan (or anyone else), how many devices are out there that can accept and display 1920x1080p?
JVC HD2K, apparently already shipping to commercial market.

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post #724 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 08:07 AM
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The Sony accepts 1080i only
I stand corrected.
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the Sharp is a 1280x720p DLP unit.
Right. Thats's why I said "accept not fully resolve" because the scaler on these units will accept a 1080p signal and then rescale to 720p.
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post #725 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 09:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by RobHT
Agreed.
IMO, there are two camps that need to be "won over". First is the early adopters (represented in this forum). We will all be royally pi$$ed if they settle for less than ideal specs for the next generation of DVD. But let's face it, we will still be lined up to buy these products either way.
I'm glad you said this because it's exactly the thought that goes through my head everytime someone here posts that they won't buy into either new HD disc format if it doesn't meet their high expectations. The vast majority of us are going to buy into one of these formats regardless of what specs are included. If we weren't going to I highly doubt we'd be posting on an AV forum to begin with. This forum is clealy for enthusiasts and we will be more than happy to give our money away to buy Blu-ray or HD-DVD decks, some of us will easily be buying both. I want the best possible a/v and don't care about extras. I won't be kidding those here or myself about not buying into these formats if I have to settle for second best codecs.
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post #726 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 09:25 AM
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Originally posted by RobHT
The second camp, Joe sixpack is another story. They bought into DVD because they didn't get charged $2 for forgetting to rewind, the DVD player also could also play CDs, bonus material, and finally PQ and DD. I think there needs to be another "hook" to speed the adoption of HD DVD (either format).
Exclusives, exclusives, exclusives! If Spider-Man 3 or Stars Wars Episode 3 were only released on HD-DVD or Blu-ray that would certainly help drive the sales of HD disc players. Now figure that the studios already know this and will do this to a lot of titles, perhaps not at launch but give it time... I'm certain it'll happen just as it did with DVD over VHS. Studios could also release a barebones version of Ep3 on DVD and a deluxe special edition on HD-DVD. How many Star Wars fanatics will just have to have the SE? Hook, line, and sinker. ;)
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post #727 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 10:28 AM
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I'm worried that we'll do just that: bow to whatever the studios care to give us. There has to be insentive for them to raise the bar. They didn't with DVD, which is riddled with all sorts of compromises, so we must push for the "best it can be" for these new formats.

Also 1920x1080p display devices are just around the bend. There will already be some units available by the time both blue laser discs are ready for market. Also, Sony is under some outside pressure to make the Qualia line able to accept pure 1080 progressive signals and not just 1080i.

TI is moving towards something akin to 1080p DLP chips (hopefully true 1080p soon) and JVC and their newer D-ILA projectors are not far behind either. LCoS displays can resolve 1920x1080p now, they just have to be "wired" to accept 1:1 mapping of 1080p signals.

If Microsoft, right now, can do a type of limited 1080p video and put it on a disc for us to play with on higher end PC's, there is no reason why these high capacity discs can't do much, much better in terms of ultimate video and audio quality.

Listen up, studios! Just say "NO" to DNR and EE!!
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post #728 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 10:37 AM
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Does anyone know what the theorectical contrast ratio of DVD and HDTV is? And "infinite" doesn't count if you can do "0" on the black output. Isn't it limited to 256 discrete, identical steps? Or is it more than that?

Also, you can bet that 1080x1920 DLP with 5000:1 contrast will be available for <$10K by the time either format is under $500. Or even under $5000 with 3-chip versions under $10K. So, displaying the image won't be a problem soon enough.

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post #729 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 10:37 AM
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As a person who predominately rents DVDs ala Netflix, how would the Blu-Ray discs hold up in a rental environment? HD-DVD should be fine but I'm not so sure about Blu-Ray. Considering how much money the studios make off rental sales, I'm sure this is a major concern.

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post #730 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 11:57 AM
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Good question. With Blu-Ray, the protective layer is thinner, only 0.1 mm, so that the data layer is quite a bit closer to the surface. My understanding is that Blu-Ray folks have developed a special hard-coat protective layer. Supposedly it is scratch resistant and can be cleaned with a tissue. But it does mean that, in theory, Blu-Ray discs may be more sensitive to dust or fingerprints on the surface---not necessary for damage reasons, but they may be a bit more finicky.

Interestingly enough, with RedBook CDs the data layer is very close to the surface as well---only the data layer is on the top side of the disc, not the bottom side. In fact, I think it's even more poorly protected than with Blu-Ray.

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post #731 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 12:19 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally posted by Michael Grant
Good question. With Blu-Ray, the protective layer is thinner, only 0.1 mm, so that the data layer is quite a bit closer to the surface. My understanding is that Blu-Ray folks have developed a special hard-coat protective layer. Supposedly it is scratch resistant and can be cleaned with a tissue. But it does mean that, in theory, Blu-Ray discs may be more sensitive to dust or fingerprints on the surface---not necessary for damage reasons, but they may be a bit more finicky.
As I recall, TDK developed that protective layer right around the same time (maybe) that they hooked in with the Blu-ray guys. That was the main reason I expressed interest in the physical spec of BD-Rom, and posted that link a couple of days ago. Thought it might include a little more info about that layer.

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post #732 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 12:30 PM - Thread Starter
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New article with nice summary of present and potential future of HiDef DVD. Also quotes R. Doherty who has posted here, at this link.

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post #733 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 01:08 PM
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Thanks for the reminder Palladin. I found your previous post, looked at the linked article, and found this tidbit:
Quote:
One of the major differences between Blu-ray and HD-DVD had been that Blu-ray would require a cartridge to hold the disc. That's all changed now that TDK, a new member to the consortium, has developed a new hard-coat layer that protects the disc.

As a demonstration, someone from TDK drew on the media side of a BR disc with a sharpie pen, and the ink refused to stick. Instead, it just beaded up and stayed wet, which was then wiped right off using a hotel table cloth, no less. No doubt the hotel cleaning staff weren't too amused.
I might as well post a link to that article again, it's a good one, though it's unapologetically pro-Blu-Ray propaganda.

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post #734 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 01:09 PM
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Great article Palladin!

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Winning this standards war could be lucrative in terms of royalty payments and consumer sales. But the sides may yet decide to forgo all-out victory in favor of a technology merger.
A merger including the best of what both formats have to offer would be ideal for the studios and consumers. If they were to work together they could split the royalties between all of the companies involved in it's creation equally. Now there's a thought which because it involves reasoning we can be sure a merger won't happen, but then there's this quote...

Quote:
Schlichting said he "wouldn't be surprised" if the two camps agreed to a single hybrid technology. After all, he said, such an agreement among rival firms was reached in the evolution of the original DVD standard.
Maybe there's hope after all even at this stage where both formats appear to ready to battle rather than work it out.

Quote:
For history to repeat itself, though, HD DVD backers need more momentum to beat the larger group pushing Blu-ray, Schlichting said. "HD DVD has to be really a lot more of a threat to Blu-ray," Schlichting said.
Agreed, and the main reason why I believe Blu-ray will win... far more big companies involved.

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Panasonic's Doherty downplayed the threat of upconverting. He said the difference in viewing quality between an upconverted disc and a true high-definition video is like "night and day."
Interesting quote as there was just a debate about this in one of the HD disc threads here a couple of days ago.

Quote:
But he also indicated the Blu-ray camp is ready to avoid a war that could result in losses even for the winners.

Panasonic "might be open" to a merger of technologies as a way to head off another standards battle, Doherty said. "I don't think anyone wants that," he said.
Smart man!
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post #735 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 01:24 PM
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"A merger including the best of what both formats have to offer would be ideal for the studios and consumers. If they were to work together they could split the royalties between all of the companies involved in it's creation equally."

What elements of HD-DVD could even be incorporated into BluRay?

There is no difference in HDMI cables. If you can see the picture without visible dropouts or sparklies, the cable is working at 100%. No other cable will display a better version of that picture. You're simply wrong if you think there is a better digital cable than one that is already working. (Oh, and plasma didn't die because of logistics problems, nor does OLED ship in big boxes because it comes from Korea.)
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post #736 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 01:31 PM
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I don't know how you'd merge Blu-ray and HD-DVD technologies. I don't see that they have much, if anything, in common disc/drive wise.

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post #737 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 01:48 PM
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What elements of HD-DVD could even be incorporated into BluRay?
Royalty payments to Toshiba and NEC? :)

In other words, if there is such a merger, it is because the HD-DVD folks decide they're treading water and the Blu-Ray folks decide to throw them a financial bone so they'll come on over. I don't see anything they can offer technologically.

I don't see a scenario whereby Blu-Ray gives up the ship. So either HD-DVD folds or there are two parallel formats and the market decides.

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post #738 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 01:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by rogo
What elements of HD-DVD could even be incorporated into BluRay?
Beats the hell out of me! :D Mr. Doherty from Panasonic must know something we don't yet know about HD-DVD that this would even be a possibility, that or he's exceptionally kind.
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post #739 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 02:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Alimental
I don't know how you'd merge Blu-ray and HD-DVD technologies. I don't see that they have much, if anything, in common disc/drive wise.
I'll make a guess that if the formats were to merge that they'd go ahead with the Blu-ray discs but that Toshiba and NEC would have a voice in what codecs are used and how the players and discs are marketed.
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post #740 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 02:06 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally posted by Michael Grant
Royalty payments to Toshiba and NEC? :)

In other words, if there is such a merger, it is because the HD-DVD folks decide they're treading water and the Blu-Ray folks decide to throw them a financial bone so they'll come on over. I don't see anything they can offer technologically.

I don't see a scenario whereby Blu-Ray gives up the ship. So either HD-DVD folds or there are two parallel formats and the market decides.
I entirely agree, Michael. I think that Doherty's statement was most likely a 'poitical response', intended to avoid insulting the HD-DVD team. Both sides know that a format war is in no one's interest, and that it is the studio's biggest nightmare. I also don't see how Toshiba and NEC will be offered equal shares in the Blu-ray pie, as they haven't participated in the R&D costs. Perhaps some smaller percentage will be considered to eliminate the potential problem, and bring 'everyone' to an accord.

BTW, FWIW (and it ain't much), I think the DVD Forum approved the HD-DVD camcorder standard today.

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post #741 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 02:48 PM
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The *only* technical advantage of HD-DVD is the more affordable use of current pressing and drive building infrastructure so that would all be lost in a Blu-ray merger, so what's the point? It would be more like a negotiated surrender than a merger.

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post #742 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 02:55 PM
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Well, since the Blu-Ray camp hasn't been pushing the audio side of things too much, I would say bring over Dolby/Meridian's MLP as the mandated standard for high resolution audio bit-for-bit lossless compression.

Use standard DTS and/or Dolby Digital as a way to add a backwards compatible soundtrack, and very low bitrate DD for audio commentary tracks (these don't need to take up space and fidelity is not as much of an issue). This is what DVD-Audio does. MLP packed or possible uncompressed high rez. PCM for the premo track and one or both of the lossy formats so everyone can play the discs.

MLP has the capability of more than 8 discrete channels and many different resolution choices. It can be flexible given the bitrates you have to work with.

In order to bring over Microsoft's loyalty to Blu-Ray, add the VC-9 codec into the standards. Then the production houses have the choice of which codec best suites the needs of the source material: H.264/AVC FRExt in all its various forms including true 12 bit/4:4:4 encoding or the latest version of VC-9 (I would assume more for PC based material as it supposedly uses less computational cycles).

MPEG-2 can be used to record OTA, cable, and satellite signals that still use this outdated format. But you can also record using the other two more efficient codecs if you so desire. I wouldn't want MPEG-2 on pre-packaged video content as we all know it's just a space hog and we also want room for the best audio.

I don't know how the two formats could merge physical specs.

Dan

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post #743 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 03:02 PM
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The *only* technical advantage of HD-DVD is the more affordable use of current pressing and drive building infrastructure so that would all be lost in a Blu-ray merger, so what's the point? It would be more like a negotiated surrender than a merger.
Exactly.
Quote:
MPEG-2 can be used to record OTA, cable, and satellite signals that still use this outdated format. But you can also record using the other two more efficient codecs if you so desire.
I don't think it is likely we will be recording in MPEG4 or VC9 in the near future. MPEG2 encoders are far cheaper, more mature, and more readily available, so for analog broadcasts I think MPEG2 will be the codec of choice, at least in the first generation---and furthermore I think analog recording will be limited to SD broadcasts. For digital broadcasts, the cheapest implementation will just save the bitstream as it comes down the pipe---and currently that bistream is MPEG2. (Though there is talk of using more advanced codecs for satellite broadcasts.) I see no point in adding unecessary cost and complexity to a Blu-Ray recorder by providing, say, MPEG2->MPEG4 transcoding. At least not in the first generation.

This does bring up a good point though. I know that Microsoft is trying to do some deals to get VC9 into satellite broadcasting. Voom, for example, is supposedly considering it. I wonder if they are using these prospects to convince Blu-Ray that they need to at least support VC9 playback.

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post #744 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 03:12 PM
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Now, if there is real bite behind the HD-DVD camp's insistence that they'll have players out by EARLY 2005 then when do you suspect we'll see the finalized specs. for a/v?

When they state they have mandated VC-9 & MPEG-4 & MPEG-2, does that mean that it is the latest H.264/AVC FRExt version of MPEG-4 and since this is now either similar or possibly better than VC-9 (and because of royalty issues), would you think H.264/AVC FRExt may be utilized more than VC-9?

Have they mandated MLP yet or are the audio standards still up in the air for HD-DVD?

I'm suddenly curious about HD-DVD's specs. since it now looks like Time/Warner may win the bid for the rest of the MGM library. If they go with HD-DVD because of their past loyalties to the DVD Forum, and the back door deals between Microsoft and Disney push Disney to-wards HD-DVD, wouldn't that spell real trouble for Blu-Ray?

As much as Blu-Ray may become a format to be reckoned with if they choose the right A/V specs, it's still all about which format gets the most big studio backing. So far Sony Studios has only backed themselves.

Hmmm...

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post #745 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 03:15 PM
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The audio standards are still up in the air, for both discs.

Andre
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post #746 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 03:32 PM
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Thanks, guys, I agree there is no technical incorporation to be done.

I wonder if Toshiba would take 5-7% of the royalties, tho, and go away. I believe they'd actually make much more money that way ('cause I agree that BluRay ships regardless of what happens), but there is so much ego at stake here.

Perhaps this time Warner tells Toshiba to take the crumb instead of the cake? Or be left behind....

There is no difference in HDMI cables. If you can see the picture without visible dropouts or sparklies, the cable is working at 100%. No other cable will display a better version of that picture. You're simply wrong if you think there is a better digital cable than one that is already working. (Oh, and plasma didn't die because of logistics problems, nor does OLED ship in big boxes because it comes from Korea.)
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post #747 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 03:41 PM
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Although most of the studios keep saying they are neutral parties, you can be sure there is a lot of under the table wheeling 'n' dealing going on to woo loyalties on both sides.

I wouldn't be surprised if some haven't already chosen, but are staying mum.

Remember though, that through all this looms the spectre of very draconian copy protection measures that may finally kill off fair use practices. Even if the best format wins, we may all wind up losing.

Dan

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post #748 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 03:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Michael Grant
Exactly.I don't think it is likely we will be recording in MPEG4 or VC9 in the near future. MPEG2 encoders are far cheaper, more mature, and more readily available, so for analog broadcasts I think MPEG2 will be the codec of choice, at least in the first generation---and furthermore I think analog recording will be limited to SD broadcasts. For digital broadcasts, the cheapest implementation will just save the bitstream as it comes down the pipe---and currently that bistream is MPEG2. (Though there is talk of using more advanced codecs for satellite broadcasts.) I see no point in adding unecessary cost and complexity to a Blu-Ray recorder by providing, say, MPEG2->MPEG4 transcoding. At least not in the first generation.

This does bring up a good point though. I know that Microsoft is trying to do some deals to get VC9 into satellite broadcasting. Voom, for example, is supposedly considering it. I wonder if they are using these prospects to convince Blu-Ray that they need to at least support VC9 playback.
I do believe Voom has signed on as it will double their channel capacity. I would be shocked if DirecTV and Dish don't go to VC-9 or MPEG4 because it would be cheaper to replace existing HD satellite units than to try to squeeze more and more HD bandwidth into tiny container or add more satellite capacity.

As for recording, how long are we going to be doing recording from analog signals? Not too much longer, really. So, most things will be recorded natively with copy-right flags in case you try to dupe it for someone.

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post #749 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 03:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Dan Hitchman

When they state they have mandated VC-9 & MPEG-4 & MPEG-2, does that mean that it is the latest H.264/AVC FRExt version of MPEG-4 and since this is now either similar or possibly better than VC-9 (and because of royalty issues), would you think H.264/AVC FRExt may be utilized more than VC-9?
Just remember Dan, it's highly unlikely the first years discs will be anything other than MPEG-2. Same for Blu-Ray. It's up to the studios to use the codecs available to them.

Can you see it now: you buy the MPEG-2 version of (insert favorite movie) followed by the Superbit version a year later of the same movie, but in a newer codec :D

-> No longer looking for Hi-Vision LDs <-

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post #750 of 18952 Old 08-17-2004, 05:12 PM
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Going by what Microsoft has posted on their website. It seems their licensing fee are the cheapest by far.....
http://www.microsoft.com/windows/win...licensing.aspx
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