What's the deal with HD-DVD? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 17 Old 01-05-2005, 12:01 PM - Thread Starter
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Hello,

I briefly saw that Sony and Philips are developing a new "HD-DVD" that stores more data (naturally) than today's DVDs.

Question: Are the DVDs of today the VHS cassettes of tomorrow?

Also, I would imagine that once everyone buys fancy-schmancy displays of 1080p or even 720p these disks will be the ones to buy or rent movies on - especially if they also contain fancy-schmancy 7.1 or who knows? 8.1 surround formats.

All I know is the local guy who owns a video rental store only heard about them too but I imagine it would help his business because Comcast et. al. can't possibly pipe-in that amount of data over cable. Although some fiber-optic guy said once you hook something up with glass, you can shoot as much as you want through it.

Anyone got a shout-out regarding these?
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post #2 of 17 Old 01-05-2005, 12:21 PM
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In answer to your first question, no. The new players will be backwards-compatible with regular DVD's so you are safe. They may even be better resolution with the new players, since the players will be able to decode the old disks at a higher bit-rate.

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post #3 of 17 Old 01-05-2005, 12:23 PM
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This should really be in the hardware section.

Two new competing DVD formats are coming out that dramatically expand the amount of data a DVD an hold - HD-DVD and Blu-Ray. Both can handle HD video.

A lot more information will be coming out on these formats in the next few days from the Consumer Electronics Show.
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post #4 of 17 Old 01-05-2005, 12:27 PM
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Search for Blu-Ray in the Digital Software forum.

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post #5 of 17 Old 01-05-2005, 12:28 PM
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I thought I'd read pretty recently that the backers of both formats expect to have players and prerecorded movies at retail in time for Christmas 2005.


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post #6 of 17 Old 01-05-2005, 01:05 PM
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I suspect the transition from DVD to HD-DVD/Blu-ray will be much slower than the transition from VHS to DVD.

For one, the VHS to DVD transition didn't require you to get a new TV.

Secondly, the "only" real advantage HD-DVD will offer is picture quality (and possibly audio quality) - where as DVD introduced a variety of new advantages - no rewinding, use of the buzzword "digital", plus add-on features like director's commentary, interactive menu's, etc. And don't underestimate the importance of the success CD's had. It was only natural that people were asking for a video version of CD's.

Since SACD and DVD-A haven't been as widely successful, it's not a reach to say that HD-DVD's have a much tougher road ahead of them as well. Of course, I can't wait. :)
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post #7 of 17 Old 01-05-2005, 02:34 PM
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Santa got me the WMVHD version of “The Magic of Flight†for X-mas. After watching the compression artifacts, I now understand why we need 50G disks.
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post #8 of 17 Old 01-05-2005, 02:54 PM
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That's another delay. Santa will have to upgrade his DVD production lines and retrain his elf slave-labor force in order to get either of these versions under the trees next Christmas. :D

Will work for HTPC components.
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post #9 of 17 Old 01-05-2005, 05:23 PM
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this may sound silly, but if both formats are released to the mainstream i see HD-DVD having a significant advantage just based on the name, which clearly explains what it is, and people by then will probably be that much more familiar with HDTV, so they'll grab for that format.

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post #10 of 17 Old 01-05-2005, 09:13 PM
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I'm suspecting it may turn out to be a SACD/DVD-A/CD type of thing... the two formats (HD-DVD and Blu-Ray) will refuse to give ground to each other, but in the mean time the general public will react with indifference, especially when faced with the prospect of buying their video collections again.

I further suspect the studios will shoot themselves in the collective feet by charging a premium for HD DVD content, releasing normal DVDs at present price points and charging $40 and up for a HD disc (after all, if Superbit DVDs have an MSRP of $30, surely HD should be worth at least an extra $10 MSRP...)
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post #11 of 17 Old 01-06-2005, 03:32 AM
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One of the things I've seen mentioned as an advantage for HD-DVD is that it supports support for both a DVD compatible layer in addition to the HD-DVD layer(s). This means a single disc could be sold for playback on both a conventional DVD player or an HD-DVD player - no need for a dual inventory and consumers could purchase a DVD of a film confident that the HD version is also on the disc for when they upgrade in the future.

On reading the small print the combined DVD/HD-DVD discs only seem to support a single DVD layer (i.e. DVD-5 4.7Gb not DVD-9 8.5Gb) so the DVD film may not look that good - and presumably a second DVD would be needed for extras?

HOWEVER I have also seen references to a DVD/BluRay single disc format that supports a dual layer-DVD (i.e. DVD-9 8.5Gb) meaning there would be no compromise on the DVD content compared to a conventional DVD. However I think this combined disc only supports a single BluRay layer (25Gb) - but this is probably still good enough for a film if MPEG4/VC-1 is used (50Gb is the capacity of a 3 hour D-VHS using MPEG2?)
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post #12 of 17 Old 01-06-2005, 04:48 AM
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There might be some price resistance if they had only a single red layer with lower quality and yet wanted the red laser only buyers to pay a premium blue laser HD price on a dual mode disc.

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post #13 of 17 Old 01-06-2005, 06:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by sneals2000
One of the things I've seen mentioned as an advantage for HD-DVD is that it supports support for both a DVD compatible layer in addition to the HD-DVD layer(s). This means a single disc could be sold for playback on both a conventional DVD player or an HD-DVD player - no need for a dual inventory and consumers could purchase a DVD of a film confident that the HD version is also on the disc for when they upgrade in the future.

On reading the small print the combined DVD/HD-DVD discs only seem to support a single DVD layer (i.e. DVD-5 4.7Gb not DVD-9 8.5Gb) so the DVD film may not look that good - and presumably a second DVD would be needed for extras?

HOWEVER I have also seen references to a DVD/BluRay single disc format that supports a dual layer-DVD (i.e. DVD-9 8.5Gb) meaning there would be no compromise on the DVD content compared to a conventional DVD. However I think this combined disc only supports a single BluRay layer (25Gb) - but this is probably still good enough for a film if MPEG4/VC-1 is used (50Gb is the capacity of a 3 hour D-VHS using MPEG2?)
I believe it was Toshiba that just released a new dual layer, dual format DVD-HD disc. Where one layer would be for HD content and the second layer would be for SD content. So you could have the movie in HD on one layer, at a decent bitrate, with all the extras in SD on the second layer.
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post #14 of 17 Old 01-06-2005, 08:12 AM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for all of the input. I recommend this forum to anyone who has a computer.

I mistakingly put this in HDTV programming but the hardware section makes more sense. whoops. (I even gave it some thought before putting it there).

I think HD-DVD is Hollywood's attempt to regain control of movie distribution (e.g. through tangible discs) because they all feel threatened by Comcast et. al. Or maybe the just want to create a "premium" DVD category in order to boost profits.

And then you'll have to buy a HD-DVD player as well (if you really want the BEST picture quality on your 1080p display). Hmmm..... And the beat goes on.
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post #15 of 17 Old 01-06-2005, 10:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by kucharsk
I further suspect the studios will shoot themselves in the collective feet by charging a premium for HD DVD content, releasing normal DVDs at present price points and charging $40 and up for a HD disc (after all, if Superbit DVDs have an MSRP of $30, surely HD should be worth at least an extra $10 MSRP...)
Movie studios do have a incentive to move the HD DVD to curb piracy. The new copy protection will be harder to break and 50G is too much for someone to download with a residential connection.

Unfortunately, as you pointed out the MPA does not really care about piracy from a dollars an cents point of view. This is obvious from their choice to only back copy protection that a high school kid can break. I have to agree with you that charging a lot for the new disks will be more profitable than the reduction in piracy that wide scale consumer acceptance would create.
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post #16 of 17 Old 01-06-2005, 11:07 AM
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Maybe I'm crazy, but doesn't anyone else think the quoted storage capacities from both camps seem a little low?

It seems like another format in which I'll have to put in a second disc for "The Godfather 2."... so as to "not compromise the video quality."

And it's not going to just be 7.1/8.1 audio. It's 13.1 audio from Dolby and lossless from DTS as well as MLP! They're going to skip that 10.1 format that was demonstrated just a couple of years ago and going straight to 13.1. Sheesh.
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post #17 of 17 Old 01-06-2005, 02:22 PM
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They could go straight to 103.1, I'm not buying any more damn speakers!
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