Newbie Questions about the BluRay/HDDVD war... - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 08:10 AM - Thread Starter
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OK, I like my Home theater toys, but I consider myself to be your average male consumer. I have no intention of spending huge amounts of cash on a new format that hasn't been well established or supported (the history of home electronics is littered with things like laserdisk and betamax). I am also waiting until the prices come down. Basically, I intend to be on the sidelines until 1) One format is standard, 2) It is easier to get an HD disk then a standard DVD, 3) Costs have dropped.

So, can someone please summerize (as someone who is just starting to pay attention to this format), what is going on with the 2 competing systems, who is supporting what (I heard that a few studios just annonced that they will stop supporting BluRay-true or false, and does it matter), and how long it will be before the dust settles.

And doesn't everyone realize that this competition hurts the industry. Most casual homeowners will not venture into this market. Once the dust settles, the market will spring open and the sales will skyrocket. But, until then, this is fringe technology that I will run (not walk) away from.

So, yeah, can someone give me a summary of where things currently stand (non-biased please). I know that there are several posts about this, and I appologize, but all the posts I read seemed to assume that the reader was up to date on what is going on with the market...I need something much more basic. Thanks again...
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post #2 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 08:15 AM
 
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1. You need to do a lot of reading. All of your questions have been answered here a million times. The search works great.
2. You aren't ready for any of this, because it won't meet your needs for a year if ever.
3. Than and then are words with actual definitions.
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post #3 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 08:18 AM
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a) your "average male consumer" isn't gonna wait for one or the other, he'll get both... or he'll get one or the other and spend half his waking hours touting it's superiority and the other half denigrating the one he doesn't have.

b) who knows what is going to happen? if any of us really knew, we'd be in a position to make tons of money. the outcome of "neither one wins and they both die" is still very much a reality, and probably has just as good a chance of coming true as a "single victor" result.

c) if you don't know anything about what is going on, you can't make a comment along the lines of "competition is hurting...". all you do is expose your ignorance.

d) if you are currently "running away from the technology", what the point of your post in the first place? i smell an agenda here, but i'm not sure what it is. just sit on the sidelines and wait (since that's what you said you intend to do anyway)...

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post #4 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 08:22 AM
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I can answer your main question very quick, even though you didn't really ask it.

The terms are:

Blu-ray
HD DVD
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post #5 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 09:38 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ccotenj View Post

a) your "average male consumer" isn't gonna wait for one or the other, he'll get both... Average male consumer with limited disposible income. Not average member on this board

b) who knows what is going to happen? if any of us really knew, we'd be in a position to make tons of money. the outcome of "neither one wins and they both die" is still very much a reality, and probably has just as good a chance of coming true as a "single victor" result. That's an interesting scenario. Is that really possible considering how many households now have HD televisions and that this will be the standard soon.

c) if you don't know anything about what is going on, you can't make a comment along the lines of "competition is hurting...". all you do is expose your ignorance. The whole point of this thread is that i AM ignorant about it. But, as an outsider on this topic, I would think that if there were just one standard (either one) and it appeared that the technology was going in that direction, I would buy much sooner (and so would many others). Larger consumer share-larger sales-more profit. The clashing technologies are keeping me out-and I am likely not the only one...

d) if you are currently "running away from the technology", what the point of your post in the first place? Ummm...just a basic education on the matter. Nothing wrong with that is there? i smell an agenda here, [b]Uhhh...no[/B ]but i'm not sure what it is. just sit on the sidelines and wait (since that's what you said you intend to do anyway)...Like in football, I can stand on the sidelines with no understanding of what I am seeing, or I can learn about whats going on.

Hope that clarifies things a little about my post, and my questions.
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post #6 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 10:05 AM
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If someone has already invested in an HDTV -- and 40 million US households already have -- the cost of entry to hidef players isn't too severe. Even with limited disposable income, $199 HD DVD have already been sold and that price is expected to be available widely by year end 2007. Lots of people with limited incomes can still manage that in a paycheque or two.

So the next hurdle is the cost of movies. Transformers, for example, is about $30 for the souped up 2-disc HD DVD version. Guess what it cost to see in the movie theatre? with a date or a family? and parking and popcorn? So, sure, the movies aren't "free" but they are within reach. Plus increasingly local stores are carrying hidef disc rentals.

There are definitely lots of hidef movies aimed at "average young males". Rather too many for my taste, but that will change.

Hidef players also improve the look of your existing DVDs by upconverting very well to your existing HDTV. Even if you "pick the loser", you're going to have a very nice player of regular DVDs (and whatever hidef discs you'd gathered to that point).

So if you really want to wait "till the dust settles" and hidef discs take the majority of retail space, then you have an opportunity to invest you money on at least a 36 month term. But then you'll miss out on 36 months of great (and cheap) entertainment pleasure.
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post #7 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 10:15 AM
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My 2¢.

Buy one or both of the formats. The machines themselves are not so expensive. No more than a HD PVR or a game console. Betamax, VHS, DVD and CD players sold for more than $1000 a few years back (well, more than a few years)... At a time when salaries were a lot lower than today.

If you have money for a HDTV, you probably can afford one or both formats.

Just don't buy any HD discs; rent them. I would be a shame to spend hundreds, if not thousands of dollars and be stuck with a a library of discs that play on a machine that isn't available anymore (Anybody got a stack of unusable Beta movies?).
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post #8 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 10:18 AM
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Buy both. Then no problems and you can see any HD film. THe war will go on too long to wait it out with one or no HD players..

There are more than a handful of [op amps] that sound so good that most designers want to be using them as opposed to discreet transistors. Dave Reich, Theta 2009
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post #9 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 10:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ccotenj View Post


c) if you don't know anything about what is going on, you can't make a comment along the lines of "competition is hurting...". all you do is expose your ignorance.

For the benefit of the newbie, it is one of the HD DVD talking points to deny that the format war is deterring wider adoption of high def discs. They say it is only the price of players that is deterring wider adoption.
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post #10 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 11:05 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by patrick99 View Post

For the benefit of the newbie, it is one of the HD DVD talking points to deny that the format war is deterring wider adoption of high def discs. They say it is only the price of players that is deterring wider adoption.


Thanks for filling me in. I do find that surprizing, since I am not buying right now mostly because I would only have limited movie selection or need two systems. The price tag isn't the main stumbling block (although still an issue). I grew up during the VHS/Betamax war, and knew a lot of ticked off Beta owners. This seems like the same thing....

Again, I am hoping that, with a little time, both issues will resolve.
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post #11 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 11:17 AM
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I always saw it this way.

These 2 formats are nearly identical with the exception of slightly different software, and some slightly different hardware specs. They both are discs.


These aren't cassettes that have different size ports.

DVD players play CD's.

Blu-ray and HD DVD players play DVD's and CD's.

Now with a 50/50 studio support, the only place I see this format war going to is a player that can play both formats.

Pop a red cased disc into that player's tray, and it plays it. Pop a blue cased disc in that player's tray, and it plays it. Pop a DVD in it, and it plays it. Same with CD's.

So my suggestion is if you're nervous about either format losing. Wait till a dual format player emerges for a price you're willing to pay, then get it. Then you won't have to care.

59 Blu-rays and counting...
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post #12 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 11:19 AM
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Originally Posted by thebland View Post

Buy both. Then no problems and you can see any HD film. THe war will go on too long to wait it out with one or no HD players..

Run, run the sky is falling, Jeff recommends HD-DVD.
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post #13 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 11:23 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Raymond23 View Post

...(the history of home electronics is littered with things like laserdisk and betamax)...

LD and Beta were both successful niche products that lasted over a decade. Failure consumer formats would be like Elcasette and DAT. Unfortunately BD and HD-DVD will probably follow in similar footsteps and never become mainstream like DVD, VHS, or CD.
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post #14 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 11:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by William View Post

LD and Beta were both successful niche products that lasted over a decade. Failure consumer formats would be like Elcasette and DAT. Unfortunately BD and HD-DVD will probably follow in similar footsteps and never become mainstream like DVD, VHS, or CD.

This can be a positive thing


I never get anyone asking me to borrow movies anymore cus they can't play them

59 Blu-rays and counting...
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post #15 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 11:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Raymond23 View Post

OK, I like my Home theater toys, but I consider myself to be your average male consumer. I have no intention of spending huge amounts of cash on a new format that hasn't been well established or supported (the history of home electronics is littered with things like laserdisk and betamax). I am also waiting until the prices come down. Basically, I intend to be on the sidelines until 1) One format is standard, 2) It is easier to get an HD disk then a standard DVD, 3) Costs have dropped.

Until all three criteria are met or any of the above?

Quote:


So, can someone please summerize (as someone who is just starting to pay attention to this format), what is going on with the 2 competing systems, who is supporting what (I heard that a few studios just annonced that they will stop supporting BluRay-true or false, and does it matter), and how long it will be before the dust settles.

Paramount (and their subsidiary, Dreamworks) just switched from Blu Ray to HD DVD exclusivity a couple of months ago for a reported (but unconfirmed) 150 million dollar incentive.

As to how long before one side "wins"?

That is anyone's guess at the moment with the Blu Ray people having claimed victory a few times already (but not since the Paramount defection) and other, less biased parties giving estimates of anywhere from 18 months to basically never (if players which handle both formats end up the default, of if both formats fail due to in-fighting and some other source of High Definition media ends up being adopted).
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post #16 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 11:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by William View Post

LD and Beta were both successful niche products that lasted over a decade. Failure consumer formats would be like Elcasette and DAT. Unfortunately BD and HD-DVD will probably follow in similar footsteps and never become mainstream like DVD, VHS, or CD.

With the billions which have already been invested in both Blu and HD by their respective backers, if either or both are relegated to the sales figures of LD or Betamax then ultimately they will most certainly be labeled by history as failures.
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post #17 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 12:34 PM
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HD DVD is the best bet:

(1) HD DVD Players are half the price of BD players, generally, so less outlay and risk.
(2) For twice the money, BD players are only offering somewhat obsolete BD 1.0 specs today, and less features, generally, for your money. I certainly wouldn't advise buying a BD player until you can get a BD 1.1 compliant player for much less money.
(3) Even though more than half of Bluray titles coming out now are on Dual Layer BD50 discs, the majority of BD titles are actually on Single Layer BD25 discs. Almost all HD DVD releases are on Dual Layer discs, which mean more space for quality encodes and extras on most titles which have been released to BOTH formats.
(4) With dual-format players becoming much more common in the coming months, the price of dual format players will come down significantly next year. This means you can enjoy HD now with HD DVD, and, if there is still a need later, you can pick up a dual format player later on.

Some folks will take the "let them eat cake" approach and tell you that you should buy into both formats right now. If you feel the need to throw away some cash, you can, of course, choose to do this. But it's rather a waste, considering the only BD players you can get today are STILL the BD 1.0 players which are already obsolete. However, if you DO decide to do so, you're still better off in most cases by buying the HD DVD versions of any movies that are available in both formats.

Some here will disagree with ALL of this advice, of course... but more will likely agree.
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post #18 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 02:21 PM
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Stick with SD-Dvd.

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post #19 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 03:46 PM
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19 post and only one's a fanboy (sorry rdjam you lose) post (maybe some BD fanboy can throw one in to make it even). Must be a new AVS record for a thread with BD, HD DVD, and war in the title. Does that mean things are getting better or just plan luck?
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post #20 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 04:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JE3146 View Post

Now with a 50/50 studio support, the only place I see this format war going to is a player that can play both formats.

Agreed. The studios have decided on a format, and that format is "both". Like it or not, that's the reality.
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post #21 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 04:57 PM
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For me, it's very simple. I own a PS3and it happens to play Blu-ray discs. Therefore, I'm buying Blu-ray movies/contentand content providers/studios that don't put their product on Blu-ray will not see money from me.

It's very simple.
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post #22 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 05:07 PM
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For me, it's very simple. I own a PS3and it happens to play Blu-ray discs. Therefore, I'm buying Blu-ray movies/contentand content providers/studios that don't put their product on Blu-ray will not see money from me.

It's very simple.

Unless you are financially strapped (what are you doing in this hobby then?) that is very short sighted because you will not see Batman, Pitch Black, King Kong, or Transformers.
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post #23 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 05:14 PM
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1) The cheapest player available at bestbuy is a $299 Toshiba A2 -- the cheapest Blu-ray is the 449 Samsung 1200. Whether you buy the whole 1080p/i thing or not, the A2 isn't capable of 1080p, and the upscaling abilities of the 1200 are superior to the A2. There are also rumors of a $399 PS3, very soon. So, not quite twice as much (Although there are good deals on Amazon -- always worth checking!)
2) BD players are certainly offering fewer interactive features than their HD DVD counter parts. One has to make a personal decision on how useful or entertaining those features, of course. Personally, I can live without interactive extras -- give me some solid video and audio output! Waiting until Profile 1.1 players start arriving may not be bad advice, however.
3) This is silly -- either AVC/VC-1 are quality, efficient codecs (as people argue all the time in favor of HD DVD), or they're not. And while a few early BD titles had image problems, quality is more consistent now. Especially since the single layer BD is only 5 gigabytes less than the dual layer HD DVD. The actual percentages are: 57% to 43% single layer/dual layer, with an ever decreasing gap, of course.
4) There is some talk of the Samsung dual player coming out at 799 -- a very reasonable price, given the specs -- including features no other HD DVD or Blu-ray can claim -- hopefully it sees the light of freakin' day before Christmas!

I think most people would reasonably disagree with the statement that the current gen of BR players are obsolete because they can't do PiP or internet connectivity. These generation shouldn't have issues playing next years movies -- and IF your main concern is the best quality movie experience as defined by HQ pq and aq, then either format is a good bet.

Really, assuming you can't do dual format now -- just go with the format that has the movies you want to watch. Why else would you pick a format?

Quote:
Originally Posted by rdjam View Post

HD DVD is the best bet:

(1) HD DVD Players are half the price of BD players, generally, so less outlay and risk.
(2) For twice the money, BD players are only offering somewhat obsolete BD 1.0 specs today, and less features, generally, for your money. I certainly wouldn't advise buying a BD player until you can get a BD 1.1 compliant player for much less money.
(3) Even though more than half of Bluray titles coming out now are on Dual Layer BD50 discs, the majority of BD titles are actually on Single Layer BD25 discs. Almost all HD DVD releases are on Dual Layer discs, which mean more space for quality encodes and extras on most titles which have been released to BOTH formats.
(4) With dual-format players becoming much more common in the coming months, the price of dual format players will come down significantly next year. This means you can enjoy HD now with HD DVD, and, if there is still a need later, you can pick up a dual format player later on.

Some folks will take the "let them eat cake" approach and tell you that you should buy into both formats right now. If you feel the need to throw away some cash, you can, of course, choose to do this. But it's rather a waste, considering the only BD players you can get today are STILL the BD 1.0 players which are already obsolete. However, if you DO decide to do so, you're still better off in most cases by buying the HD DVD versions of any movies that are available in both formats.

Some here will disagree with ALL of this advice, of course... but more will likely agree.

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post #24 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 05:15 PM
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Originally Posted by William View Post

Unless you are financially strapped (what are you doing in this hobby then?) that is very short sighted because you will not see Batman, Pitch Black, King Kong, or Transformers.

Batman is a Warner title -- and it their website is to be believed, an eventual BR title.
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post #25 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 05:16 PM
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Originally Posted by William View Post

19 post and only one's a fanboy (sorry rdjam you lose) post (maybe some BD fanboy can throw one in to make it even). Must be a new AVS record for a thread with BD, HD DVD, and war in the title. Does that mean things are getting better or just plan luck?

God I hope that means things are getting better! ha.

It's a much harsher world in the HD DVD software forum, however!
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post #26 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 05:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by William View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by BinkAVSF View Post

For me, it’s very simple. I own a PS3—and it happens to play Blu-ray discs. Therefore, I’m buying Blu-ray movies/content—and content providers/studios that don’t put their product on Blu-ray will not see money from me.

It’s very simple.

Unless you are financially strapped (what are you doing in this hobby then?) that is very short sighted because you will not see Batman, Pitch Black, King Kong, or Transformers.

“Oh well.” Maybe the studios/content providers will wise up and release their content in both formats.
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post #27 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 05:53 PM
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Quote:


Originally Posted by patrick99
For the benefit of the newbie, it is one of the HD DVD talking points to deny that the format war is deterring wider adoption of high def discs. They say it is only the price of players that is deterring wider adoption.

or its mirror statement

Quote:


For the benefit of the newbie, it is one of the Blu-ray talking points to overstate that the format war is deterring wider adoption of high def discs. They say it is only the confusion of consumers that is deterring wider adoption

So HD DVD by having the gaul to provide competition at a lower hardware cost is prolonging the format war.

Simplest solution is for HD DVD to just die off. So says the BDA and Sony.


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post #28 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 06:01 PM
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If you are afraid of the format war, one of the simplest ways is to buy the lowest cost hardware and rent discs. Then buy the other sides hardware when prices drop.

For example if you look, you can find a Toshiba HD A3 HD DVD player now, for $249-$299 at Best Buy with two movies in the box (300, Bourne Identify ) and a mail in rebate for 5 more, and Best Buy was giving last week 2 additional movies or a $100 off gift certificate.

Toshiba will soon bundle HDTV HD DVD combos.

If you have a Xbox 360 you can get an HD DVD add on for less than $179 on cheaper than that.

Blu-ray players and the Ps3 are more expensive but also have free movies included.

Pick a side, and rent some disc from Blockbuster online or Netflix.

Both formats will be around for years so you might as well enjoy life.

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post #29 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 06:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Raymond23 View Post

Thanks for filling me in. I do find that surprizing, since I am not buying right now mostly because I would only have limited movie selection or need two systems. The price tag isn't the main stumbling block (although still an issue). I grew up during the VHS/Betamax war, and knew a lot of ticked off Beta owners. This seems like the same thing....

Again, I am hoping that, with a little time, both issues will resolve.

A new HDM player will also make your existing DVD collection look much better with its upconversion capabilities.

Might as will plan on getting both eventually, but HD DVD players are cheaper to get into now and with 7-9 free movies included, one can help rationalize the cost of an entry level player.

1080i60 or 720p output will look just the same as 1080p60 output on most newer HDTVs.

Both formats are far superior to broadcast HDTV cable or Sat in HD quality.

If you rent instead of buy discs you don't risk much.

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post #30 of 38 Old 10-14-2007, 08:17 PM
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Sounds like no matter what, you are waiting for a single format.

I doubt there will ever be one winner in the end. By that time both technologies will be so cheap that all players will be dual format and no one will even care which is what and it won't matter what studios support.
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