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post #1531 of 18952 Old 09-24-2004, 01:03 PM
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Richard, Rogo, Blu-ray faithful...

All my info was culled from DADC interviews/reports/presentations...Mike Mitchell, Ed Gehrich, etc. Straight from the horse's mouth, in other words.

And not to beat a dead horse, but the DADC 9/04 MediaTech presentation is a real eye opener. To recap...

Sony's SDT Lab 25GB BD-ROM line is now just under an 80% yield, a little above a 4.3 second cycle time, not operating at full capacity. By launch (looks to be mid-to-late 2005?), DADC is predicting 90% yields and 4.0 second cycle times, 24x7, 95% uptime. The presentation also indicates that DADC doesn't expect to get cycles times much below 4.0 seconds, even through 2006.

Once again, no data was revealed for 50GB BD-ROM. Why, exactly? Surely if DADC is confident of 90% yields (and 4 second cycle times) for 50GB BD-ROM, they would have used MediaTech to broadcast this to the world, especially given all the HD-DVD camp's "noise" on 50GB BD-ROM yields, right? Is it because there are no functioning 50GB BD-ROM lines outside of the prototype line at SDT from which to gather data, much less test? Add to that the public admission that as of today, Sony still doesn't have a final process definition for bonding and L1 layer rep for 50GB BD-ROM, and yes, I think it's okay to question the availability/cost of 50GB BD-ROM discs at debut.

Yes, Lieberfarb's a little nuts, but his Lucky 7 vaporware claim wasn't that far off, especially at the time he made it...besides, how can you get mad at the guy who rallied so hard to get VC-9 into the HD-DVD spec, which "forced" Blu-ray to get it into their spec?

FWIW, the same presentation also sheds more light on the BDA's cost case for BD-ROM. To put an end to all this, the BDA's very vocal "BD-ROM will only cost 10% more than a DVD" argument hinges exclusively on equipment depreciation deltas, not hard manufacturing costs, and assumes a minimum plant volume of 10MM discs/month. It makes for a pretty bar chart, but those cost figures have been MBA-ized beyond recognition and those volumes are way off what we're going to see for a long, long time. Sony also assumes significant DVD equipment reuse for a BD-ROM line, and yet neither Cinram nor DADC plan to do this. Sorry, I'm not buying it.

Again, probably a moot point...I think HD-DVD killed themselves shortly after lunch, 9/22/04, 50GB BD-ROM issues or not.

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post #1532 of 18952 Old 09-24-2004, 01:17 PM
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dch50 says:

Quote:
If I'm understanding Mr. Dorherty statement correctly that DTS++ has lossless compression in it why the need for MLP? Is there an advantage to MLP over DTS ++ because if its redundant as he states I don't see what the fuss is about.
DTS' lossless codec competed head to head with Meridian's lossless codec (and one other, I think from Samsung maybe it was Toshiba) to be chosen as the compression technology used for DVD-Audio. Only Meridians codec could successfully compress all sample selections that were provided within the required specifications.

So, why should a codec that is demonstrably inferior be utilized other than political reasons?

MLP has demonstrated lower bandwidth, and has been field proven as practical via its utilization in > 500 recordings to date.

DTS lossless track record? Non-existent.

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post #1533 of 18952 Old 09-24-2004, 01:22 PM
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What happened on 9/22/04?
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post #1534 of 18952 Old 09-24-2004, 01:23 PM
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It was MEI. DTS did not make it as far as MEI either.

I have compressed some movie soundtracks using both MLP and WMA Pro Lossless that have used less than 1.5 Mbps, which is full bit rate lossy DTS.

If I recall correctly, DTS had poor rate control. They could not ensure that the bitrate never went above 9.8 Mbps for DVD-A.

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post #1535 of 18952 Old 09-24-2004, 02:09 PM
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Alex -- I'm not questioning that you had source material, all I said is what Sony ended up saying.

Whatever the reasons, it looks very unlikely the gov't is going to care about this on any significant level.

And, yes, Sony only put up $300 million in cash. The buyout firms combined put up about 3x that... They are going to borrow a lot of money to leverage the whole thing.

It looks like the business plan is for Sony to be exclusive distributor of all this stuff and "pay" MGM which will they pay down the debt. Eventually, someone will presumably buy a much-less-debt-laden entity for more. The buyout guys like to get paid down the road. So either they re-sell this or they turn it into a long-term cash cow. The buyout guys have been buying stuff like yellow pages recently, so this kind of might fit that model.

Mark

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.
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post #1536 of 18952 Old 09-24-2004, 02:17 PM
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On a related note, who is this Texas Pacific Group?

I've heard their name before. I think their CEO or chairman signed up to endorse Kerry a couple of months back.

An oil-fueled arbitrage firm from Texas?
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post #1537 of 18952 Old 09-24-2004, 02:17 PM
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Stacey,

Thanks. For some reason I thought it was Toshiba or Samsung instead of Matsushita.

When you consider the corporations resources the fact that a company the size of Meridian delivered MLP it becomes an even greater achievement.

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post #1538 of 18952 Old 09-24-2004, 04:31 PM
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Texas Pacific is a well-known buyout firm. They've done ~40 transactions and have ~$13 billion under management. Apparently, only 7 of the 40 have been sold off, spun out, etc. thus far.

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.
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post #1539 of 18952 Old 09-24-2004, 04:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by RDoherty
Are you sure? I would be happy to be wrong, but I'm pretty sure those displays are 1080p30 (not 1080p60) as their maximum framerate. There are some very high end front projectors that do 1080p60, I believe. The term '1080p' is bandied about by many manufacturers, and it almost always refers to 1080p30.
Well, the displays I'm referring to are LCD TVs, such as the Sharp LC-45GX6U. It has to operate at 60fps in order to display regular video material (720p60/1080i60/NTSC etc).

Quote:
It's the fundamental limiting framerates of film at 24p and ATSC at 30p that make 60p content delivery to the consumer very unlikely. Will you be willing to pay (significantly) more for hardware to support an unlikely format? The maximum bandwidth on every bus in the unit will have to double, including the HD decoders.
That's really for the BDA to decide. If 1080p60 proves to be too expensive to implement, then it will be left out of the standard. It would be a perfectly understandable commercial decision: mass market products need to be affordable. Still, a dual-layer Blu-ray disc has enough capacity to carry a couple of hours worth of 1080p60 video, so 1080p60 is practicable. Whether it is commercially viable remains to be seen.;)
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post #1540 of 18952 Old 09-24-2004, 04:39 PM
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The presentations from last month's MediaTech conference offer a lot of hard data on where both formats are right now, where they are going and what challenges they face in getting there.

Here's the complete set:

http://www.media-tech.net/conference...ft=1&content=1

For those with ADD, here's a wrapup of the key HD-DVD/BD-ROM presentations...

GE PLASTICS

Concerned about long term moisture/humidity issues with polycarbonate-based BD-ROMs, propose using NORYL as a substrate to minimize impact

Paper substrate? Mon dieu!

Working on their own spincoat/hardcoat solution for BD-ROM

Standard DVD hardcoat process is fine for HD-DVD...no need for a new solution

PHILLIPS

BD-ROM is no harder to manufacture than CD-R :)

BD-ROM manufacturing spec margins for are easier to hit than HD-DVD spec margins (they need to talk to Cinram, I guess)

No answer yet on best cover layer approach for BD-ROM--working with TDK/MEI on spincoating and with Sony on extrusion foil gluing

4 second cycle times and 70% yields for 25GB BD-ROM...guess they didn't get the memo from Sony in time :)

5 second cycle times for 50GB BD-ROM...again, no mentioning yields for 50GB BD-ROM

Prototype half height single diode, single objective lens CD/DVD/BD-RE writer...very impressive

Lots of room for improvement in BD-ROM spincoat cycle times (way too high)and post-process yields (way too low)

Convinced that consumers demand quality for video (HD) but convenience for audio (MP3), think BD-ROM should reflect that dichotomy

Proprietary 35GB/layer BD-RE varient, up to 4 layers (140GB/disc)

MEMEORY-TECH (REPLICATOR)

Firmly in the HD-DVD camp...but we already knew this :)

Two existing Kofu lines can stamp 30GB HD-DVDs at 3.5 second cycle times, 90%+ yields at full capacity

Two lines scheduled for install next month will run at "less than" 3.0 second cycle times for 30GB HD-DVD

Actively working on in-house HD prep (telecine, clean up, color correction) and encoding for all 3 codecs...want to be a one stop shop for HD distribution

Want to share their production secrets with other replicators (?!?)

CINRAM (REPLICATOR)

Suposedly a "friend" of the BDA (DADC lists them as an active Blu-ray replicator), but really blasted BD-ROM from a manufacturing perspective IMO

Noted "unproven" BD-ROM mastering technology (specifically, PTM) and "difficulty" in obtaining BD-ROM masters from Sony for test BD-ROM runs

Pre-cleaning step may be required to improve yield on BD-ROM hard coat application process (post process yield is 85%-90% due to surface imperfections, unacceptable)

As of 9/04, hitting ~95% yields and ~3.5 second yield times for 15GB HD-DVD

As of 9/04, hitting ~80% yields and ~4.0 second yield times for 30GB HD-DVD (they need to talk to Memory-Tech!)

As of 9/04, hitting 9.0 second cycle times for 25GB BD-ROM, no yield data provided (they need to talk to Sony!)

Stamped 1,000,000+ HD-DVD discs during testing

Flat out stated that all new equipment was necessary for BD-ROM manufacturing...no chance for any DVD equipment reuse (talk to Sony, I guess)

Still consider BD-ROM molding/bonding process to be "experimental"

Plan to be < 3.0 seconds cycle time for HD-DVD by Q1 2005

Due to tighter tolerances, HD-DVD costs "may be slightly higher" relative to DVD

Due to new equipment, higher material costs, tighter tolerances, higher cycle times and hard coat step, BD-ROM costs "will be higher than DVD"

In the end, manufacturing costs will be driven by yield and cycle times...period

SONY DADC (REPLICATOR)

First production PTM LBR to be installed at DADC January 2005

Said "not vaporware!" all through their slides :)

SDT Lab's prototype 25GB BD-ROM line hitting 4.0 second injection molding cycle times and 4.0 second cover layer bonding cycle times

SDT Lab's prototype 50GB BD-ROM line hitting 4.0 second injection molding cycle times and 5.0 second cover layer bonding cycle times

Swear that existing DVD equipment can be re-used for BD-ROM lines (talk to Cinram, I guess)

Still looking at 3 different ways to handle cover layer application

DADC will be at 4.0 second cycle times and 90% yield at full capacity for format debut (mid/late 2005)

Sony BD-ROM vs. DVD cost analysis is shown in all its glory on Slide 36

25GB BD-ROM line process definition is complete, still working on 50GB BD-ROM line process defintion

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post #1541 of 18952 Old 09-24-2004, 04:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by wco81
What happened on 9/22/04?
DVD Forum Steering Committee meeting...they voted on the final audio codec list.

http://www.dvdforum.org/27scmtg-resolution.htm

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post #1542 of 18952 Old 09-24-2004, 04:54 PM
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I really hope optical media aren't bound by the limitations of broadcast standards. Obviously they're expected to provide greater bitrates than ATSC.

So it seems to be a matter of how much to exceed the ATSC standards, not whether to exceed them at all.
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post #1543 of 18952 Old 09-24-2004, 06:11 PM
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1080p60 on disc and let the player downrez (if necessary) for the display.

The most efficient path is seldom a straight line.
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post #1544 of 18952 Old 09-25-2004, 03:29 AM
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Let me see if I understand this 'mandatory' thing.

With DD+ lossy, DTS++ lossy, and 2-channel MLP being mandatory, does it mean that every HD-DVD disc must contain all three soundtracks, with lossless multichannel DTS++ an optional extra?

Is there even the capacity on HD-DVD to carry them all without impacting on video quality? And why only 2-channel mandatory MLP, when DVD-Audio is already multichannel?
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post #1545 of 18952 Old 09-25-2004, 07:10 AM
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Don't worry about the audio codecs taking up valuable video space. It won't matter once the 10 hours of worthless extras, moronic commentaries, previews, FBI warnings and interviews with the director's cousin's neighbor's gardener's dentist are piled on the disc. And they'll have the nerve to call it value added material.

The most efficient path is seldom a straight line.
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post #1546 of 18952 Old 09-25-2004, 07:43 AM
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Quote:
To clarify, as of 9/22/04, the DVD Forum has spoken on audio codecs for HD-DVD applications:

Mandatory:

DD+ Lossy
DTS++ Lossy
MLP 2-Channel Lossless

Optional:

DTS++ Lossless

Not good in my book. I was looking for 7.1 MLP. Who cares what the cost delta for manufacturing is vs. Blu-ray...HD-DVD just shot its foot off in my book.
Agreed. Totally Lame. I think it is almost time to start a one format campaign for Blu Ray.

Quote:
MLP 2-Channel Lossless

That makes no sense at all. I would love to know what the rationale is behind this decision.
Again, totally lame. Are they serious? Why on earth would you intentionally cap MLP at 2.0 channel 24/192? Are we absolutely sure that they are actually capping MLP to standard DVD-Audio specs? Are we sure that they could not provide 8 channel 24/96 or 8 channel 24/192 (Audio only) ???

Quote:
The reason for MLP is that it would keep DVD-A going and expand on it. Or, we could toss out one format for another one that is basically the same. I see no advantage to DTS++ as nothing currently uses it, but MLP IS used. If BD group doesn't use MLP, it's politics. Unless the licensing fees are much lower. Either way, MLP makes more sense. I'll pay an extra buck or two for MLP.
MLP should certainly lower its fees in general, if they haven't already. DVD-Audio, and particularly expanding DVD-Audio needs all the momentum it can gather. Also, Studios can compress movie soundtracks using MLP as easily as they can DD or DTS.

ALL of us are going to have to upgrade to HDMI connectors, etc.. to take advantage of the new features Blu Ray has to offer. However, there will always be a Dolby Digital track for backward compatability, so who cares if we provide one high quality MLP soundtrack for movies or DTS lossless for movies: As somebody said, we are all going to need an upgrade regardless! For those who want the least amount of upgrading, use the Dolby Digital track that will be provided. Perhaps Blu Ray players will provide, standard coax output for the DD track so you wouldn't have to upgrade you current surround processor unless you so desired? For the most part, anything can be done...

I'd have to agree:

1) Make MLP mandatory, provide instant support for DVD-Audio
2) Expand MLP capabilities, and future expansion (8+ channel 24/96 or 24/192)
3) Compress movie soundtracks using MLP when necessary (to always provide one main track in lossless or uncompressed quality)

Optional DTS++ lossless is a mistake. If it is not included with every player, you will never see it supported for movie soundtracks.

Alex, very impressive summary...
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post #1547 of 18952 Old 09-25-2004, 08:05 AM
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what I don't understand is, why would they pay the royalty for MLP and then use the least useful subset of its capacity? Much as I like(d) DTS, I'd give up all of it in a heartbeat for really forward thinking MLP. Does the DVD working group even know about BD? It sure doesn't seem like it.

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post #1548 of 18952 Old 09-25-2004, 08:13 AM
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Quote:
Jamal
With DD+ lossy, DTS++ lossy, and 2-channel MLP being mandatory, does it mean that every HD-DVD disc must contain all three soundtracks, with lossless multichannel DTS++ an optional extra?
No. It means that all players must support the mandatory formats, and optionally DTS++. The discs themselves are free to choose whichever of these formats they want, although presumably they will be required to supply at least one sountrack from the mandatory category if they also use DTS++-Lossless.
Quote:
Health Nut
Optional DTS++ lossless is a mistake. If it is not included with every player, you will never see it supported for movie soundtracks.
To be fair, making something optional doesn't mean that it won't get implemented or that DVDs won't use it. DTS is not a mandatory codec on SD-DVD, after all.

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post #1549 of 18952 Old 09-25-2004, 08:15 AM
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Are you guys SURE about MLP2.0 only? Here's the section from Widescreen Review:

MLP Lossless technology, licensed by Dolby Laboratories, has also been selected as mandatory audio standard of the HD DVD by the DVD Forum. MLP Lossless reproduces every nuance of an original performance, including elements that may have been previously lost or masked in CD playback. Because it delivers the highest audio fidelity possible without compromising picture quality or video bit rates, MLP Lossless is the perfect complement to Dolby Digital Plus. With MLP Lossless as a mandatory audio format, consumers can experience, for example, their favorite prerecorded concert performance at the highest level of audio fidelity and quality possible on an HD DVD. The DVD Forum's selection also ensures that consumers with HD DVD players will be able to play DVD-Audio discs. The core audio technology behind multichannel DVD-Audio, MLP Lossless, enables content providers to encode multiple channels of 24-bit/96 kHz surround sound or 24-bit/192 kHz stereo content onto a DVD. Playback of content encoded in MLP Lossless is bit-for-bit identical to the studio master; nothing is lost during the encoding/decoding process. The result is the most realistic and involving high-fidelity audio available for packaged media.

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post #1550 of 18952 Old 09-25-2004, 08:26 AM
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Read Michael Grant's post. He's the only person that has gotten the point.

Required to be on an HD-DVD is one of the following:
Dolby Digital +
DTS
MLP 2-Channel


This is quite similar to the requirements of DVD-Video:
DD
PCM 2.0

Since MLP is included in the base set, it is possible that MLP for multi-channel lossless audio is an option. I am trying to get confirmation from parties that will know , but don't expect an answer in 2 seconds :)

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post #1551 of 18952 Old 09-25-2004, 08:32 AM
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Ask them if they're going to leave it open to more than 8 channels! :)

I guess this makes more sense though. MLP 2.0 would replace the PCM trach for performance gains and/or space savings and the MLP multi-channel would simply be an option. It just wouldn't make sense to license MLP and not allow for more of its capability. I'm surprised they haven't mentioned this, unless they're still hashing out just how many channels of MLP should be included.

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post #1552 of 18952 Old 09-25-2004, 09:27 AM
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Quote:
MLP should certainly lower its fees in general
MLP is not expensive.

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post #1553 of 18952 Old 09-25-2004, 09:28 AM
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Are movies encoded in MLP multichannel?

Since there is such a vested interested in DTS by Spielberg and others, who's using MLP for the theatrical prints?
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post #1554 of 18952 Old 09-25-2004, 11:33 AM
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There's not movies released in MLP, but the masters would be in PCM and then dumbed down to DTS or DD or SDDS. But MLP would take the PCM masters and zip them up in a nice, efficient package and allow home sound to be that much better than the theater sound OR it would allow the next generation of digital cinema to provide higher resolution sound with even more channels in the same package with digital video. The vested interest in DTS is only because there hasn't been a better alternative. MLP is that alternative. I believe you can even do CD quality 5.1 MLP on a standard DVD-V if you also had a DVD-A player by encoding 5.1 MLP into the PCM section. Or at least, it's been floated as a possible successor to DTS and DD.

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post #1555 of 18952 Old 09-25-2004, 11:55 AM
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No but I read that Spielberg and other directors and producers put money up to develop DTS and derive royalties from its use.

You're telling me that the prints used in the theaters use PCM? Because I would swear they advertise DD or DTS.

Are we currently getting lossy sound at the theaters?
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post #1556 of 18952 Old 09-25-2004, 01:06 PM
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I think John Kotches has got it right.

If 5.1 MLP was mandatory then all MLP soundtracks would have to be encoded in 5.1 surround, and all stereo recordings would have to be remixed in 5.1. By making 2.0 mandatory, original stereo soundtracks are allowed.

HD-DVD players will have to be able to decode 5.1 MLP anyway in order to support DVD-Audio.
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post #1557 of 18952 Old 09-25-2004, 01:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by wco81
You're telling me that the prints used in the theaters use PCM? Because I would swear they advertise DD or DTS.
I didn't say that at all, I said that the original master recording is done in PCM, then it is encoded into the DD or DTS soundtrack.
Quote:

Are we currently getting lossy sound at the theaters?
Yes, not that you could tell through the crappy sound systems.

John
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post #1558 of 18952 Old 09-25-2004, 02:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Jamal
If 5.1 MLP was mandatory then all MLP soundtracks would have to be encoded in 5.1 surround, and all stereo recordings would have to be remixed in 5.1. By making 2.0 mandatory, original stereo soundtracks are allowed.
Good call, my brain wasn't processing that all to well for some reason. Makes sense.

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post #1559 of 18952 Old 09-25-2004, 08:22 PM
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MLP is not expensive.
Ok... I guess I was remembering something from old SACD vs DVD-A wars... something or other about 40 cents per disc to encode with MLP vs 10 cents for SACD... I just remember hearing something or other about MLP encoding fees for DVD-A being a little steep. In any case, I was just concerned that liscensing fees/useage fees might be a potential negative... Glad it is not.

Like we said, this is more about politics than what's best. MLP would be the best way to compress everything as far as I'm concerned. Then again, I'll take lossless or uncompressed anyway I can get it for movies. If the studios insist on using DTS for the primary soundtrack for Blu Ray, I expect them to provide one DTS lossless track and one other track for backward compatability (probably DD 5.1)
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post #1560 of 18952 Old 09-25-2004, 09:52 PM
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Here's an intresting article talking about the cost of all these licensing fee.

http://www.thebaj.com/features/licensing.htm

Here's a little snibit from the article pertaining to mlp:

"To include DVD-Audio the manufacturer needs a CPPM licence (Content Protection for Pre-recorded Media) at around $6000 per year, along with an MLP licence (Meridian Lossless Packing) from Dolby costing about 50 cents per player for small to medium volumes, less for large ones. Including Dolby 5.1 decoding adds three more licence units (and yet another one for Dolby Pro Logic II), so costs increase to about $12 or $13 here instead of the $4.50 or so mentioned earlier. DTS 5.1 adds another $11 or so for smaller companies, but DTS streaming from the digital output (as most players do) is free of charge."
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