Originally Posted by benes
HD DVD and Blu-ray are digital formats. There is nothing inherent to these formats that can make one better than the other (besides Blu-ray being larger and capable of higher bitrates).
There is no such thing as an "HD DVD transfer". Any HD DVD encode could be put onto a Blu-ray as well. In fact this is exactly what Warner did with most of their titles.
Agreed that their capabilities are similar, in that both provide hi definition displays and lossless sound when supported and delivered.
The real issue is the quality of the transfer and any shenanigans that were done along the way. Some transfers were done well in HD-DVD and were not done well initially in BD.
A case in point about bad transfers even within one format was the bluray release of Fifth Element, which was reissued with a new transfer because the first was godawful.
So there are different transfers even if it was because the time when they were made available in each format is different.
The fault is not with either platform, but what the studio did as far as producing a quality transfer. Another example is that some titles in HD-DVD were not released using lossless sound yet are available on bluray with it. Both formats can support it, it's the choice by the studios which master to use, any video filtering applied, etc. and the sound format that was used.
The only thing, as an example that I believe these new "mastered in 4K" blurays give you is a much higher bitrate and rescanned masters. I buy them because of that, but that is something that the studios could have done from the beginning.
I have both HD-DVD (HD-A35) and bluray (Oppo 83), so I have no leanings one way or the other, but while the formats are similar, there can be differences in the actual movies.