Industry Insiders Master Q&A thread IV: ONLY Questions to Insiders - Page 155 - AVS Forum
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post #4621 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 09:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tobi54 View Post

"The main problem that I see with this on the studio side, is that even if Toshiba would have given them a financial incentive to do it, it would have crippled their overall sales and profits by a huge margin.

If I recall correctly, Transformers sold 8Mil+ DVD copies on its first week (who knows what the current number is by now), and during this time the installed user base of HD DVD was at around 600k to 700k, getting rid off the DVD release would have been like not taking free money, lots of it. But yes, I agree that this would have been a huge plus for the format, a very aggressive move, and would have made a big difference on this past holiday season."

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-Dave, I have read in other forums that Toshiba (HD DVD group?) is "going all out" after 2 studios since the Warner announcement, have you heard anything about this?

I have not heard this. I have said what I have heard...they are trying to sell as many players as they can over the next 30 days to stay viable. If that doesn't work, then they are in trouble. (more trouble than now).

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post #4622 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 10:13 AM
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Dave, or another insider: What disk sale market split will you expect to see signals the end of the war? In the past year we have seen the share almost totally dependent on the specific titles released, but Uni and Paramount can maintain their market share even when BD outsells HD DVD. Depending on releases, a 85/15 split might be OK to them.

In this phase absolute numbers are more important than ratios, it seems to me.
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post #4623 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 10:36 AM
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Well, in absolute numbers, Blu-ray has outsold HD DVD every week and they have "lead" in actual numbers with over a couple million discs.

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post #4624 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 11:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Vaughn View Post

Risk avoidance. They didn't want to risk hurting sales of a DVD title and also the added costs of the combo. There is also an issue with production lines of combo discs. It's very complicated, which is probably why it was never done.

Hi Dave,

Thanks for your insights.

Could you (or other insiders) elaborate on what you mean by "an issue with production lines of combo discs"? We know that due to the similarity of HD DVDs to DVDs that mass market volumes of HD DVDs can be produced on DVD production lines with just minor adjustments. Is this not the case with combos? I know there have been some quality control issues with combos, but my question is can combos be produced in mass market volumes on DVD equipment with satisfactory yields?

Thanks.

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post #4625 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 11:23 AM
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Insiders,

Any idea what they do to actually compare the numbers?

What I mean is, there's been one Amazon BOGO after another for Blu all year long, whereas HD DVD only saw a single one (from what I can recall).

Comparing the numbers directly would be like comparing apples to oranges (some are actually paid for, some are given away, so there's no profit on the freebees), and it doesn't take genius to see that BOGOs alter comsumers buying habits in an unnatural way (people buy titles they wouldn't normally buy, or take the plunge on ones they were sitting on the fence about.)

Thoughts?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Vaughn View Post

Well, in absolute numbers, Blu-ray has outsold HD DVD every week and they have "lead" in actual numbers with over a couple million discs.

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post #4626 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 11:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LarryChanin View Post

Hi Dave,

Thanks for your insights.

Could you (or other insiders) elaborate on what you mean by "an issue with production lines of combo discs"? We know that due to the similarity of HD DVDs to DVDs that mass market volumes of HD DVDs can be produced on DVD production lines with just minor adjustments. Is this not the case with combos? I know there have been some quality control issues with combos, but my question is can combos be produced in mass market volumes on DVD equipment with satisfactory yields?

Thanks.

Larry

I have been told that the combo process is complicated and expensive. The yields are good, but it isn't an easy manufacturing process because it takes more time. Amir could probably extrapolate on this better.

David

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post #4627 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 12:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Vaughn View Post

I have been told that the combo process is complicated and expensive. The yields are good, but it isn't an easy manufacturing process because it takes more time. Amir could probably extrapolate on this better.
David

I'm not suggesting I know the answer, but why would it be any different than making a DVD-18? Except for smaller pits & track pitch, the physical disc specs are the same, so how would manufacturing a Combo disc be really any different?

And what is known about the so-called "Hybrid" HD-DVD, the one with both HD-DVD and DVD on a single side? SACD did that with no problems, and while a CD layer isn't exactly a DVD layer, it's certainly not a hugely different manufacturing scenario. Have any been made and handed out as demo's or anything?

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post #4628 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 12:27 PM
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I have an email somewhere in my inbox on combo production...I'll see if I can dig it out and I'll post what was said to me.

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post #4629 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 12:30 PM
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Dave

You say that the goal of the HD DVD side now is to get as many players out there as possible. Do you know how many players, sold through within the next month, month and a half, would be acceptable for them?

Toshiba's revised estimate for fiscal year 2007 was 1 million players (adjusted downward from 1.8 million).

Thanks
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post #4630 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 01:09 PM
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can any insider explain the test process used to tell if a just manufactured BD/DVD/HD-DVD disc is good or not? i imagine its not something as brute force as a read+verify, as that would probably take way too long.
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post #4631 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 01:22 PM
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I've had it with deleting posts that are not questions to Insiders, or answers from Insiders.

This topic is not for general comments or discussion, and future offenders will be suspended.

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post #4632 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 01:29 PM
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Question for HD DVD insiders:

Is there any validity to the rumor that Toshiba may be planning to tie DVD and HD DVD royalties together, forcing BD hardware manufacturers to equip their players with HD DVD playback or prohibiting BD players from being backward compatible with DVD?

Thanks.

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post #4633 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 01:56 PM
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So if Universal and Paramount are waiting to see how many players are sold this month do they have any way of determining what percentage may be used primarily as unpconvertes by unsuspecting DVD buyers? It seem to be very confusing relying on number of players sold when you have the PS3 factor for BD and the cheap upconverter factor going on with HD DVD? Is there a formula for each format to determine possible future software sales?
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post #4634 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 01:58 PM
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Regarding the stated difficulty of producing combo discs, what's the difference between producing a DVD-18, which is 2 sides with 2 layers each, and a SD/HD combo ? What makes it so much harder to do a SD/HD combo disc ?

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post #4635 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 03:24 PM
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Here is the information I have on combo's:

Quote:


They are more afraid of losing money in the still lucrative DVD market by having the increased cost of replication to do a combo disc and the reduced cost point of pricing it at DVD prices. It takes two lines to make DVD-18 or HD30/DVD9 discs, instead of one line and the process is more complex, thus it costs more.


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post #4636 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 04:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Vaughn View Post

I have not heard this. I have said what I have heard...they are trying to sell as many players as they can over the next 30 days to stay viable. If that doesn't work, then they are in trouble. (more trouble than now).

Is there any reasonable expectation (even as a slim chance) for HD DVD to sell a large number of units given that January and February are two of the slowest months of retail?
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post #4637 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 04:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jazar View Post

Is there any reasonable expectation (even as a slim chance) for HD DVD to sell a large number of units given that January and February are two of the slowest months of retail?

They are fighting a HUGE uphill battle. That is why I have stated that it is most likely too little, too late. This move should have been on on October 1, 2007.

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post #4638 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 05:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Vaughn View Post

A lot of those facilities are (TBA).

You may find this hard to believe but I do know the meaning of TBA


Quote:


Through December 1 of 2007, Sony DADC and Cinram were the only two producers of BD50 discs in North America for discs sold at retail.

Do you know of any shortage of BD50's. Do you know the current max BD50 output from all plants. Do you know the current demand of BD50 disc?


Quote:


I have a standing offer to anyone to show me a retail disc produced by anyone other than Sony DADC or Cinram that was released prior to December 1, 2007, in North America. That offer has been out there for more than 6 weeks and not one person has come forward with any disc.

Do you know how to ID the pressing plant? If so, did you post this info with your offer?


Quote:


As to the yields, Cinram gets yields between 65% to as high as 80% depending on the cycle time and how much data is on a disc. I stated this over 6 weeks ago in this thread and Cinram has recently publicly confirmed those numbers in a press release.

Do you know the yields for DADC?


Comment: It should be obvious to anyone that the first BD were BD25. Then BD50's came online only from DADC. Probably low output and low yield rates.

Other lines have now come/are coming online and yield rates are on the rise. Does this sound familiar? Sure does. Check yield rates in the early days of Laserdisc, CD's and DVD's, Transistors, IC's, CPU's, Hard Disc, etc.
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post #4639 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 06:00 PM
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Dave, Insiders,

I'd like to second the suggestion that WB make "Amadeus" a priority BD release; it's one of the most opulent films ever made and should look and sound magnificent in high definition.

However, my question concerns the viability of such a proposition now that WB is essentially turning over their HD business to a younger, PS3 market. Warners is one of the biggest and oldest studios in Hollywood, and a majority of their releases each year are older, catalogue titles. Do you think they might release as many older titles on Blu-ray now, considering that PS3 owners aren't as likely to buy things like "Amadeus," "My Fair Lady," "Cabaret," "The Maltese Falcon," or "The Treasure of the Sierra Madre" in high def as stand-alone HD DVD-player owners might? And is it possible that one of the reasons WB might have wanted to stick with HD DVD was because they knew their product appealed to an older movie-loving public rather than a younger group more inclined largely to buy things like "300"?

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post #4640 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 06:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Vaughn View Post

Although Technicolor has a BD50 line, it isn't in use (or the last I heard) because their yields were extremely low. For the record, Technicolor presses most of Paramount's discs, so maybe they were advising them on the BD50 process when Paramount decided to go with HD DVD.

Do you think Technicolor might get those production lines up and running again?
Afterall, I believe there is hope that Paramount might need their BD50 business again!

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post #4641 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 06:51 PM
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REMINDER TO INSIDERS FOLLOW THE RULES OR INFRACTIONS WILL BE ISSUED. ALAN HAS MADE IT CLEAR

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REMINDER
Insiders please stick to questions and answers related to your association only.
I cannot keep repeating this

Thread cleaned up.

Thank you!

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post #4642 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 07:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Vaughn View Post

I have not heard this. I have said what I have heard...they are trying to sell as many players as they can over the next 30 days to stay viable. If that doesn't work, then they are in trouble. (more trouble than now).

Dave,

How ruthless do you belive Toshiba can be? Do they have the gonads to play REALY hard? Regardless, should be a interesting few months.

I also work for a bank. With some interest in M&A. Contracts can be signed...and not.

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post #4643 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 08:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amirm View Post

Sorry but which mark is that? 720p with jaggies is worse than 480p without. It is not like 720p upsampled has more resolution. If it adds distortion, then it is lowering quality.

You used the reviews on one model to declare all solutions would have jaggies. There are other options in the same price range, several of which may well have better upsampling.

Until/unless you provide a better option to the OP, it's rather disingenuous to criticize mine.

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post #4644 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 09:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John J. Puccio View Post

However, my question concerns the viability of such a proposition now that WB is essentially turning over their HD business to a younger, PS3 market. Warners is one of the biggest and oldest studios in Hollywood, and a majority of their releases each year are older, catalogue titles. Do you think they might release as many older titles on Blu-ray now, considering that PS3 owners aren't as likely to buy things like "Amadeus," "My Fair Lady," "Cabaret," "The Maltese Falcon," or "The Treasure of the Sierra Madre" in high def as stand-alone HD DVD-player owners might? And is it possible that one of the reasons WB might have wanted to stick with HD DVD was because they knew their product appealed to an older movie-loving public rather than a younger group more inclined largely to buy things like "300"?

even if the ps3 crowd could be characterized a certain way, keep in mind toshiba's own marketing info showed standalone blu-ray sales slightly exceeding hd dvd player sales. so the market for classic movies is presumably the same between bd and hd.

anyway, to anyone who knows, has there been any word about wizard of oz? last year i thought it was scheduled for last christmas in france, but haven't heard anything since. thanks!

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post #4645 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 09:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Talkstr8t View Post

You used the reviews on one model to declare all solutions would have jaggies. There are other options in the same price range, several of which may well have better upsampling.

Until/unless you provide a better option to the OP, it's rather disingenuous to criticize mine.

I can try to help but this is what the OP asked:

Quote:
Originally Posted by coneyparleg View Post

2nd: It appears the PS3 can not upscale 720p native games to 1080. Upscaling has to be coded into the game. On hdtvs that do not accept 720p (like CRTs) if upscaling to 1080 is not supported by the game it will display at 480p on these hdtvs. The PS3 can upscale all dvd and ps2 and ps1 content as well as video files saved to the hard drive. Does the way the PS3 is built prevent it from being able to upscale 720p games to 1080 or is this something that will be addressed in the future? - note I acknowledge that this my not be in your field of knowledge, but could hurt to ask, also sorry if the 2nd question is off topic.

thanks

I believe, even though I no longer work for Microsoft, I am not to talk about products and formats that compete with my former employer. If so, I can't really answer his question. Note however that he was not asking an AVR question but rather, why the limitation was there.

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post #4646 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 11:22 PM
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To HD DVD insiders,

Given that Warner will not be able to release HD DVD titles after May, will this free up HD DVD disc production facilities to make HD DVD combo disc feasible without the DVD release? The HD DVD side seems to already be subsidized by Toshiba for these Studios, by going the combo route and with these subsidies would it be safe to assume that the production of HD DVD combo would be the same cost as SD DVD production?

Also, what do you think of the idea of releasing twin/hybrid format 480p and 720P content on DVD9 that plays on SD/HD DVD players? This will solve production problems, reduce cost, and keep complexity low. Of course the sacrafice would be 720p instead of 1080p, but it would be much cheaper and you can release the slighty more expensive HD DVD disc version for those who want it.

Do you think 720p would be a viable "stepping stone" format given that appleTV is trying to sell it?

What about Twin HD format of 4.7/17, are those easier to make than combos?

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post #4647 of 4687 Old 01-19-2008, 11:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hawkeye3.1 View Post

Has any studio made use of the HDi capability to update a previously released title for an issue like this?

Not this particular problem, but some web-enabled titles have updated themselves to fix bugs.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Vaughn View Post

Retail shelf space is a precious commodity. If HD DVD isn't profitable for the retailer, you can bet you a$$ that it will be filled with something that can make more money.

That's disingenuous. Stores probably sell 10 times as much Orange juice as Cranberry juice, but for some reason, every store I go into still stocks cranberry juice. As long as there's demand, it will still get shelf space. Heck, you could still buy and rent Beta tapes years after VHS "won" the war.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Vaughn View Post

I have been told that the combo process is complicated and expensive. The yields are good, but it isn't an easy manufacturing process because it takes more time. Amir could probably extrapolate on this better.

It requires a DVD-18 line, and there aren't that many around. DVD-18s never really caught on.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Striderprime00 View Post

What about Twin HD format of 4.7/17, are those easier to make than combos?

Much. A double layer twin disc uses the same line as a normal HD-30.
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post #4648 of 4687 Old 01-20-2008, 12:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bkilian View Post

Not this particular problem, but some web-enabled titles have updated themselves to fix bugs.That's disingenuous. Stores probably sell 10 times as much Orange juice as Cranberry juice, but for some reason, every store I go into still stocks cranberry juice. As long as there's demand, it will still get shelf space. Heck, you could still buy and rent Beta tapes years after VHS "won" the war.It requires a DVD-18 line, and there aren't that many around. DVD-18s never really caught on.Much. A double layer twin disc uses the same line as a normal HD-30.

Is there any word if these are going to see mass production? I've very curious if any studios have expressed any interest with the DL or TL twins.

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post #4649 of 4687 Old 01-20-2008, 12:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin12586 View Post

Talk are you confirming that we will be getting DTS-MA decoding in the PS3?

Only Sony can confirm it. Based on conversations I've had with people who should know, however, I have no doubt it's coming, I'd guess this quarter.

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post #4650 of 4687 Old 01-20-2008, 12:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eurotrance View Post

The Samsung BD-UP5500, a dual format player coming out in may, has been announced with a $599 MSRP, which means that in no time it will be under $500 street-price, a $100 premium over the 40 Gb PS3 and roughly at the same price than the most successful BR-only Panasonic player, the BD30.

Why couldn't the market have evolved towards a dual-format players as the norm, just like with DVD recorders and DVD-R / DVD+R discs ? By year's end, most likely dual-format players and BR-only players with equivalent features will be the same price, so why is it so mandatory that one format dies ?

Because a dual-format player will always cost more than a single-format player, and will likely not perform as well (because the time and effort required to integrated two separate platforms comes at the expense of optimizing a single platform). It also doesn't solve the studios' problem of authoring for two formats, nor the retailers' problem of stocking two formats, nor does it reduce consumer confusion.
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Also, with Sony now having a hold on movie production, movie replication, PS3 manufacturing, isn't that allowing them to have so much weight in retail and other aspects of the electronics business that they'll eventually dictate which way retailers/distributors must go ?

Sony has less than 15% of movie production business, and the PS3 is not the current big dog of the console business. Bottom line, Sony is far from in a position to control the retailer.

Blu-ray Insider
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