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Why are HD menus not as good as Superbit?

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
I'm talking about the menus...

Does anybody else miss the simple, consistent menus you got with Superbit DVDs?

I've been doing HD DVD for a while now and just got a Sony BD player last week. At first I thought the menus in King Kong were kind of cool -- they were a refreshing change from DVD. After watching a bunch of HD DVDs the novelty eventually wore off. The other day I was trying to get to the Rex fight scene in King Kong (Toshiba HD-XA2). With all of the chapters in that movie it took forever to get to that scene from the beginning and that was after overshooting the scene in both directions. I then switch over to the Sony BDP-300 to watch Casino Royale. A shorter scene list, but I was still overshooting the scene I wanted to get to. Part of the problem is that both formats are still a little clunky, but there is also a lot of inconsistency as well.

Anyway, I was thinking that it would be nice if the player itself had the option of presenting scenes, audio and subtitle selections in a consistent way much like we got with Superbit DVDs. This would be especially nice for a triple format player where you don't want different menu models for DVD, Blu-ray and HD DVD. This way the studios could continue producing a variety of menus with the different studios expressing their artistic freedom -- but for people that just want to watch the the movie...

Am I alone or are there others out there that would like a little more control over how they watch their movies?
post #2 of 21
I kind of like the audio/subtitle set up. With HD/BD, you dont have to stop the move, the pop up menu can take care of that. And the superbit menus had horrible cheap looking menus. IIRC the scene selection menus only showed 4 screens at a time so it would be easy to over look there as well.
post #3 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by lgans316 View Post

But you can't stop and resume playback in most of the HD DVD.

The "Bookmark" feature works just fine for the last 10 HD-DVD's that I have played on my A20... maybe not on other models?
post #4 of 21
I prefer the animated SD-DVD menu's found in the Star Wars titles over anything HD-DVD... But that's just me.... I also like the Pirates Java Menu screen with the skull and crossbones..Very cool...
post #5 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidEC View Post

The "Bookmark" feature works just fine for the last 10 HD-DVD's that I have played on my A20... maybe not on other models?

No problems here on my HD-A1.
post #6 of 21
Its not too bad you just have to take your time when finding your scence. Otherwise you will over shot it.
But like said many discs offer bookmarking so you can save your favorite scences.
post #7 of 21
Navigation is a chore with all Toshibas right now compared to most better rated SD DVD players, which is why maybe studios abandoned those flashy animated menus on HD DVD, I think.
post #8 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Supermans View Post

I prefer the animated SD-DVD menu's found in the Star Wars titles over anything HD-DVD... .

God I hate them. If someone asked me to give an example of a pointlessly over animated menu structure that would be it. The only one I can think of that's worse is The Abyss and maybe Independance Day.

All dvds , hd-dvds or BD should have a big fat button on the very first screen that just plays the damn movie.
post #9 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.D View Post

God I hate them. If someone asked me to give an example of a pointlessly over animated menu structure that would be it. The only one I can think of that's worse is The Abyss and maybe Independance Day.

All dvds , hd-dvds or BD should have a big fat button on the very first screen that just plays the damn movie.

I completely agree. Some menus are interesting the first time...but man, the Abyss just stunk up the place. There were times I would try to select which audio stream I wanted, but since it only used two colours, sometimes I would think I am selecting one...but was actually selecting the other.

Animated menus are fine...but make them simple...like Sahara.
post #10 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.D View Post

God I hate them. If someone asked me to give an example of a pointlessly over animated menu structure that would be it. The only one I can think of that's worse is The Abyss and maybe Independance Day.

All dvds , hd-dvds or BD should have a big fat button on the very first screen that just plays the damn movie.

How about Harry Potter? It takes forever to get to the menu to make any selections.

Stace
post #11 of 21
As far as DVDs. T2 5star collection is a little much.

But the UK version of Harrypotter GOF on HDDVD just plays its great..
post #12 of 21
They will never be able to make everyone happy. That might be a good suggestion though, having a few completely different menu options to choose from.

It isn't make or break though.

What I would like when navigating all the extras is a floating cursor to scoot around, much like a mouse in WindowsXP, to just click on what I want. The only thing I find annoying is moving from one side of the extras screen to the other. A cursor might not be feasible without a mouse, unless they design the "button" for "deleted scene X" to be a box that encapsulates the text of each item in the special features, then we could use the regular arrows to move a cursor around and once the desired box is highlighted we press enter.

Might be worth experimenting with. Anyone who masters HD-DVD's read this thread?
post #13 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Supermans View Post

I prefer the animated SD-DVD menu's found in the Star Wars titles over anything HD-DVD... But that's just me.... I also like the Pirates Java Menu screen with the skull and crossbones..Very cool...


I'm completly the opposite. I prefer the menu to be as simple and barebones as possible. I loved the generaic Uni menu that Universal used on a lot of their titles and I love that Warner movies play automtically without stopping for a menu.
post #14 of 21
I loved having to stop the movie to see the menu as much as the next guy...
post #15 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by lgans316 View Post

But you can't stop and resume playback in most of the HD DVD.

My XA-2 has the capabilities to stop and resume.
post #16 of 21
not on HD DVD, you don't.
post #17 of 21
Thread Starter 
I'm not surprised that everybody has a different opinion about menu navigation. It just seems that a player could add a lot of value by providing a consistent model -- maybe even have a few standard menu schemes to pick from. If the logic is built into the player this could also be much more accelerated than the current HD schemes that are not exactly responsive. Sure, the Superbit model is a little outdated, just do a nice animated refresh. Make it an overlay. There are all kinds of creative things that could be done.

I mean. When I buy a movie I shouldn't I be able to decide how I navigate? Why should the studios dictate how we navigate?
post #18 of 21
I like the menus on HD DVD, but I can't stand menu audio. Yes I know I selected special features, I don't need a click think to tell me that.
post #19 of 21
I can't stand the Warner titles that start right into the movie - I want to select TrueHD, dang it! And I don't want to interrupt the first scene to do it!

I like Universal's method the best - it's common among all their titles, and very easy to use.
post #20 of 21
Quote:


I mean. When I buy a movie I shouldn't I be able to decide how I navigate? Why should the studios dictate how we navigate?

In that case should you decide what the cover art looks like, what characters say, or what happend in the movie?

To be honest with all works of art you have to let go of control somewhere and let the artists do their thing.

Personally i like the consistancy and layout of the Universal HD-DVDs, but if every HDDVD was the same you here people complaining about it. The best option i feel is to have an cookie type setting where you can choose if all discs auto play the main feature or go to the menu first.
post #21 of 21
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdavis21484 View Post

I can't stand the Warner titles that start right into the movie - I want to select TrueHD, dang it! And I don't want to interrupt the first scene to do it!

I like Universal's method the best - it's common among all their titles, and very easy to use.

I tend to like Universal's model as well -- although in the case with King Kong and it's many chapters is a little awkward. I don't understand why the player can't give me the "Universal menu style" with all titles HD DVD, Blu-ray and DVD. Doesn't the player have visibility to some XML files or whatever to generate the menus?
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