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Why it's not a war.

post #1 of 67
Thread Starter 
This isn't a war like the VHS-Beta war because it's technologically trivial to produce a mechanical unit capable of reading both formats. We've seen the price of all-format DVD drives go through the floor for the same reason. Even though pressed and burned discs have different physical characteristics that caused some incompatibilities, now a player that can handle all formats is standard equipment on a cheap PC. And the producers of this hardware did it because they didn't want to limit their market. Compare also the plethora of flash-memory formats and the N-in-1 interface panels that they birthed (I even have one on my Mitsubishi WD-57732!).

This isn't something that could be done with VHS and Beta. You needed two different transports, two different flying heads, two different gearing systems, two different sets of electronics... just too much expense in those fragile parts. Making a single head that can track either blu-ray or HD-DVD, and one or two hw or sw conversion systems, is a far simpler thing.

So I'm saying this isn't a war between HD-DVD and Blu-ray. It's a war between multi-format and single-format players. And as long as both formats have media in the supply chain, multi-format will see value.
post #2 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by packy_mcfrag View Post

This isn't a war like the VHS-Beta war because it's technologically trivial to produce a mechanical unit capable of reading both formats. We've seen the price of all-format DVD drives go through the floor for the same reason. Even though pressed and burned discs have different physical characteristics that caused some incompatibilities, now a player that can handle all formats is standard equipment on a cheap PC. And the producers of this hardware did it because they didn't want to limit their market. Compare also the plethora of flash-memory formats and the N-in-1 interface panels that they birthed (I even have one on my Mitsubishi WD-57732!).

This isn't something that could be done with VHS and Beta. You needed two different transports, two different flying heads, two different gearing systems, two different sets of electronics... just too much expense in those fragile parts. Making a single head that can track either blu-ray or HD-DVD, and one or two hw or sw conversion systems, is a far simpler thing.

So I'm saying this isn't a war between HD-DVD and Blu-ray. It's a war between multi-format and single-format players. And as long as both formats have media in the supply chain, multi-format will see value.


Well said !


Athansios
post #3 of 67
Here here. I think it is so odd that people claim an allegiance and post nasty things about the "opposing" camp as if they will be knighted for their service to one side instead of the other.

Chris Rock said it best. On the day OJ Simpson was acquitted, some ran into the street shouting "We won! We won!" Chris replied, "What did we win? Every day I go to my mailbox and I still haven't gotten an OJ prize."

Nobody won anything.

It's foolishness, really.
post #4 of 67
They want to experience the "Nyah, Nyah we knew (chose your format) would win". I have both formats. I only care that an HD format survives and thrives, be it both or either.
post #5 of 67
I still believe strongly that HD on a disk can only thrive if only one format survives. Unless convergance can happen very fast (like, it's obvious to the public by CES 2008 that the industry is going that way) I think that the software problems and prepondernce of players that only play one format will indeed make this a war, and worse a war that cannot end in a tie if HD disks are to replace DVD.

But rather than argue with me about it, keep promoting uni-plyaers. It's fine by me, as long as it happens fast and facilitates a replacement of DVD, rather than making such a replacement impossible.
post #6 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by ottscay View Post

I still believe strongly that HD on a disk can only thrive if only one format survives. Unless convergance can happen very fast (like, it's obvious to the public by CES 2008 that the industry is going that way) I think that the software problems and prepondernce of players that only play one format will indeed make this a war, and worse a war that cannot end in a tie if HD disks are to replace DVD.

But rather than argue with me about it, keep promoting uni-plyaers. It's fine by me, as long as it happens fast and facilitates a replacement of DVD, rather than making such a replacement impossible.

This hits on what I've said many times. The 'real' format war isn't between HD-DVD and Blu-Ray, but instead between HD-DVD/BD and Standard DVD. I've totally stopped buying ANY regular DVD's, and I now only buy BD and HD-DVD discs.
post #7 of 67
The HD discs won't succeed as long as there are two standards and the perception amongst the public of a format war.

End of.

You've seen enough mainstream publications telling consumers to wait and see, you know this.

I don't mean to troll, but what are the odds that the concerned parties could be persuaded to unify the standards under one banner? If there was a new Blu-HD logo, and a psuedo standard that basically said either-or, the format differences (and packaging differences) would disappear. But for the same reason neither side is likely to give in, this is unlikely to happen. Yes, cheap universal players will help, but HD has to do more to win over consumers who are happy with SD. The perception of a war, which will go on until uni players are more common than single-format, will keep some away.

Also, as long as there are substantial numbers of single-format players out there, there will be the issue of shelf space for stocking both versions of titles. It's a waste, and it pisses retailers off. Shelf space costs money, that's why things get dumped in clearance buckets.

The 'war' against SD can't be won unless HD really does present a unified front. A single winner, even if it's a new super-format, is the only way.
post #8 of 67
Not to mention the fact that over 40 percent of HDTV owners don't even have HD service, nor are they aware of that fact.

Education, not name-calling, will decide the future of the formats.
post #9 of 67
HDTV is growing in households at a rapid rate, both from a hardware and broadcasting standpoint. Consumers are used to their new tv's being able to put out movies that are a special occasion, and look better than their regular tv. But now, when someone can watch almost anything in HD on the major networks, are they going to be satisified watching movies that doesn't look as good? In addition, when the switch was made from VHS to DVD, you had to have 2 players under the tv, but, both new formats are 100% backwards compatible. J6P can say "well, my Vizio tv (I think they're a great deal, by the way, not a knock on them at all) can do HD, and I can use rabbit ears to get HD channels, and they have new DVD players that can to, and, they'll still play all my old stuff that I'm not replacing". J6P isn't going to care which format wins, as long as his player does both. He's not going to care about all the technical crap we do concerning the existing formats, he just wants to put a movie in and have it play in HD, no matter what it is. It'll be no different than when some movie studios put DVD's in those cardboard boxes instead of plastic, it'll have a blue or dark red frame, but either way it'll play. The studio's might fight it out for awhile, but once people can buy a universal player for a good price, I really don't think it'll matter to anyone.
post #10 of 67
an edge would come to the first to offer a player and recorder.
post #11 of 67
Third format? WMV-HD looks pretty good. Cheapo $40USD drive plays it. A problem would be to get enough "under the hood" to play the discs and do so inexpensively. Of course everyone would be under Microsoft's thumb and then there's that pesky "call out" feature that some content owners implement.
post #12 of 67
As I said on this forum several years ago, the fact that the "war" could well end up with
a dual format standard is what made the war. There is plenty of precident for that solution,
with DVD+/- and the litter of different format icons that appear on a modern DVD player's
face. Both Sony and Toshiba knew that they would either win, or become one of a list of
parties collecting royalties on a multimode player. This meant there was not really much
incentive to compromise on a format.

In reality, the format war is really a war, but it isn't a war between Sony and Toshiba.
Its a war between the manufacturers and the consumers (us), and we are losing. We lose
because High definition DVDs are lagging in the market behind standard DVDs because
of consumer confusion, and because the eventual outcome is we will pay for royalties
TWICE to each maker of the high definition standards.

An early casualty of the war, largely unnoticed here, is HD-VHS, which is essentially dead.
post #13 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by samiam95124 View Post

We lose
because High definition DVDs are lagging in the market behind standard DVDs because
of consumer confusion, and because the eventual outcome is we will pay for royalties
TWICE to each maker of the high definition standards.

An early casualty of the war, largely unnoticed here, is HD-VHS, which is essentially dead.

It has nothing to do with consumer confusion. At the end of the day it comes down to 2 simple factors.

1) How many people have HDTV? A heck of a lot less then those with SD sets, so...2) why would someone spend $500-$1000 for an HD-DVD player when they only have an SD set and can buy a DVD player at Walmart for $20?
post #14 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by samiam95124 View Post

...

An early casualty of the war, largely unnoticed here, is HD-VHS, which is essentially dead.

I find it pretty absurd to compare HDVHS to HD-DVD or BD.

HD or not, I'd never go back to VHS. Many feel the same way.
post #15 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by JE3146 View Post

HD or not, I'd never go back to VHS. Many feel the same way.

Exactly why I didn't bother with DVHS. Sure I wanted HD content but not if it means rewinding and that after repeated viewings the quality diminishes. No thanks.
post #16 of 67
tape and hard drives are not the answer for long term storage the disc
still rules in that department.
post #17 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by nyg View Post

Exactly why I didn't bother with DVHS. Sure I wanted HD content but not if it means rewinding and that after repeated viewings the quality diminishes. No thanks.


There is no quality diminishment with repeated viewings. Its digital...either there and perfect or not.

I have hundreds of 1080i HD recordings. Superbowls, The Master's, Movies, Concerts, things that will never see the light of day on HD optical.
post #18 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by kej2u View Post

Not to mention the fact that over 40 percent of HDTV owners don't even have HD service, nor are they aware of that fact.

Education, not name-calling, will decide the future of the formats.

You're only partially correct - education & price will decide the formats' future.

Many people have had opportunities to view HD, but the difference between sd and hd is not enough for them to justify plunking down hundreds of dollars for the next generation Sony 300 (when it arrives) or Panny or Samsung dual format player (assuming it's initial msrp is near the $700-800 mark) when they can view a good quality display by utilizing a good upscaling sd player that costs far less.
post #19 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by Star56 View Post

There is no quality diminishment with repeated viewings. Its digital...either there and perfect or not.

I meant that tape wears out when repeatedly viewed whereas disc does not.
post #20 of 67
I think I disagree with the basic premise over the long haul.

If we assume that some form of 'higher def' format will supercede standard dvd, then it becomes an issue of the media, in this case HD-DVD and BLU-Ray. The problem is eventually one of them will become the dominant format. HW manufacturers will stop making dual capable players, then people stuck with DVD's in the 'other' format will lose out as eventually there will be no hardware to play them on.

KF
post #21 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by keithfox View Post

I think I disagree with the basic premise over the long haul.

If we assume that some form of 'higher def' format will supercede standard dvd, then it becomes an issue of the media, in this case HD-DVD and BLU-Ray. The problem is eventually one of them will become the dominant format. HW manufacturers will stop making dual capable players, then people stuck with DVD's in the 'other' format will lose out as eventually there will be no hardware to play them on.

KF

I'm stuck with a couple of thousand standard DVD's. What if they eventually stop making a player for those when one of the HD formats 'Wins'.

See how silly that logic is.
post #22 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by Star56 View Post

There is no quality diminishment with repeated viewings. Its digital...either there and perfect or not.

I have hundreds of 1080i HD recordings. Superbowls, The Master's, Movies, Concerts, things that will never see the light of day on HD optical.

Well said. If you want to archive your own high def recordings, it's the only consumer friendly way to do it.
post #23 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by bac522 View Post

It has nothing to do with consumer confusion. At the end of the day it comes down to 2 simple factors.

1) How many people have HDTV? A heck of a lot less then those with SD sets, so...2) why would someone spend $500-$1000 for an HD-DVD player when they only have an SD set and can buy a DVD player at Walmart for $20?

Guess what? HDtv sales are INCREASING. Walmart has a large selection of....HDTVs. What types of tvs get advertised in Best Buy and Circuit City ads? HDtvs. SD is getting phased out at every major retailer and HDtv is all over the place. People are buying them, prices are dropping.
post #24 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Cinema View Post

Guess what? HDtv sales are INCREASING. Walmart has a large selection of....HDTVs. What types of tvs get advertised in Best Buy and Circuit City ads? HDtvs. SD is getting phased out at every major retailer and HDtv is all over the place. People are buying them, prices are dropping.

I still see plenty of SD sets advertised in the sale papers at BB, CC, Sears, Walmart, Kmart, Target, etc. And they all have digital tuners, so it's not like they're old models.

So somebody must still be buying 'em.
post #25 of 67
I thought all SD sets were supposed to be eventually phased so that eventually, you had to buy an HDTV if you wanted a new set. Whether after being forced to buy an HDTV means you'll be more like to spend hundreds of dollars more for a source player or 5-10-15$ more for HD disks (vs. DVD) is another issue.
post #26 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by oscar_in_fw View Post

I thought all SD sets were supposed to be eventually phased so that eventually, you had to buy an HDTV if you wanted a new set. Whether after being forced to buy an HDTV means you'll be more like to spend hundreds of dollars more for a source player or 5-10-15$ more for HD disks (vs. DVD) is another issue.


This is a common mis-conception. What is being phased out by law is analog broadcast signals. The requirement is for all broadcast television to be a digital signal. That does not mean it has to be HD and require an HDTV. All you'd need is a digital tuner.

It's totally up to the TV manufacturers if they want to drop SD sets or not.

Andy
post #27 of 67
I have been away from the Format War for some time, primarily because there seemed no clear cut winner between BD and HD DVD, which kept me out of the market and largely disinterested in learning more about it. Recently, however, I discovered that the LG dual format player is readily available and, despite some weaknesses, seems to work well. That renewed my interest. Further, more are on the way.

I came across this thread today. I agree with its premise, which seems to be that there is no real war here in the sense of the Beta v. VHS videotape war because both HD DVD and BD use the same form factor. This means that a single drawer and disk reading assembly can readily be used to play both formats, and doing so is (relatively) cheap.

This makes sense to me. Thus, I cannot imagine that either format is going to be orphaned in the near future. That being so, why worry which format a given movie or other program becomes available on? It makes perfect sense to buy whichever format turns out to be most readily available and favorably priced.

As much as the players in this competition would like to end up with a virtual monopoly, as was the case with VHS, it's not going to happen for either HD DVD or BD, it seems to me.
post #28 of 67
Has anyone ever watched HD on an old TV? Before I got my Samsung T5054 I had a JVC 32 inch standard TV. I get Comcast, have the HD DVR, I would ALWAYS watch the HD channels over SD. Although I would get letterboxing the picture even on that JVC was tremendously better than the standard def channels.

If I still had a standard TV, but HD players were affordable, and titles plentiful and I only needed one player to play any HD movie, I would buy an HD player the next time I needed a new player.

I'm eagerly awaiting a dual format player to come out and be under $500. Of course one thing I have noticed that would still bug me...blu-ray movies cost quite a bit more than DVD's, HD-DVD is close in price to DVD as they can use the same basic equipment to make the DVD.

Also, while there are still a lot of standard TV's being sold, there are almost no standard TVs over 32". Most new TV's for the family room being sold are HDTV, the smaller standard TVs are generally for second or third TVs.
post #29 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rammitinski View Post

I still see plenty of SD sets advertised in the sale papers at BB, CC, Sears, Walmart, Kmart, Target, etc. And they all have digital tuners, so it's not like they're old models.

So somebody must still be buying 'em.

I don't see ads with anything other than HD sets...Best buy's ad shows 19 HD tvs and 3 SD small tevs

CC's add shows 38 HD tvs and 3 SD tvs
post #30 of 67
Hey, Joe Six-Pack here. I can assure everyone, we've know about HD for quite some time. We even know something about this BD/HD-DVD "war." In truth, we could really care less what format the movies come in. As long as that thar' disc I hold in my hand will play in that thar' player in front of me, I'll be happy. Sort of like a CD/DVD player now; stick a disc in and it plays!!! Amazing.

Within two, three years tops, 90 or even 100 percent of all players sold will be dual-format. You can take that to the bank, and if you wonder why, you're not paying attention.

Doug
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