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Blu-Ray Buyers' Guide

Last response: in Home Theatre
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April 2, 2007 11:12:13 AM

A look at standalone Blu-ray players and recorders, Blu-ray PC drives, and the combo Blu-ray/HD-DVD devices available from Korean electronics company LG. Readers should get a pretty good idea about what's out there, how much it costs, what it can do, and where to turn for more details should they need them.

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April 2, 2007 3:28:55 PM

Is there a print article feature like I've seen on anandtech and x-bit labs? Usually I copy and paste each page into a word document and then print that. Hopefully I'm just missing the "print article" link and my problems will be resolved.

BTW, in the processes of reading the article now.
April 2, 2007 5:44:31 PM

Any idea as to what kind of timeline future price reductions will come along? I remember when DVD-writers went for $500+, but I didn't buy one until they were < $100. While I'd love to be able to backup my media library with 1/5 or 1/10 the disks, I've found early adopters have to put up with both ridiculous prices and a high occurrance of "coasters".
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April 2, 2007 9:14:31 PM

About the PS3, Phil Harrison said that DVD upconversion will be coming in the future I just don't know when.
April 3, 2007 4:41:12 AM

Which format seems to be gaining control of the market (if either one is)? I for one am perfectly content with DVD for now (I mostly watch older movies anyway, so I'm already about as high resolution as I can reasonably go) but I'm curious which format I'm going to end up with one day.
April 3, 2007 4:53:06 AM

I think odds are about 60/40 for blu-ray right now. Current blu-ray sales are outpacing HD-DVD, and this is quickly making up for the blu-ray's later deployment to market.

I really just hope we have a definitive winner within the next couple years. Does anyone know who won the race between SACD and DVD-Audio? I have the feeling iTunes won that one.
April 3, 2007 7:33:32 PM

If I wanted to strictly add a device to my home theatre setup to playback Blu-Ray, the obvious choice is the PS3. It's the lowest price, so any downfalls some may notice about it are offset by knowing that the existing hardware I have can do whatever the PS3 doesn't do.

And on top of it, it's a PS3, so you can play all those games.

It wouldn't make sense to pay anymore than the PS3 costs for something that can play Blu-Ray and not play PS3 games. So, the obvious question is when will BD Players cost less than the PS3, and even then are we talking about $550 or $400?
April 4, 2007 12:38:13 AM

As much as I don't like "Sony" ...I want the best picture quality I can get when I do make the move.SO I do want blue ray to win this war.
I'd hate for the other format to win and in the back of my mind always thinking ...MMMM How good it could have looked.A noobs 2 cents.
April 4, 2007 7:53:13 AM

I'm a pretty big movie buff, so the decision to switch/adopt for me will probably come when I can walk in to a Blockbuster and see not just a separate shelf, but a separate section on hi-def movies.

Since I'm going to have to get a (new) 1080p TV anyway when the feds stop all analog broadcast TV signals, I'm thinking it's all just a matter of time. By then, 1080p TV's, dvd burners and blank discs should come down in price considerably to make the purchase more acceptable for my budget. The format war should also hopefully play itself out by then too.

As a PC user, the backup capacity will definitely interest me, as long as it doesn't take longer to fill a disc than the regular DVD burn times are now (yes, I know, current models are FAR from that). Software that lets me create hi-def movies and directly copy video from hi-def camcorders is also something I would want.

For right now though, I am happy with regular DVD. It's not a question of "if" I jump onto the HD bandwagon but rather just "when".
April 16, 2007 12:01:45 AM

i want to see a review on the video quality on all of these products! i have read reviews where they say the PS3 is an amazing BD player and that the 360's HD-DVD addon was not that great. still wondering when a comparison like this might come!
April 16, 2007 12:03:54 AM

Quote:
I'm a pretty big movie buff, so the decision to switch/adopt for me will probably come when I can walk in to a Blockbuster and see not just a separate shelf, but a separate section on hi-def movies.

Since I'm going to have to get a (new) 1080p TV anyway when the feds stop all analog broadcast TV signals, I'm thinking it's all just a matter of time. By then, 1080p TV's, dvd burners and blank discs should come down in price considerably to make the purchase more acceptable for my budget. The format war should also hopefully play itself out by then too.

As a PC user, the backup capacity will definitely interest me, as long as it doesn't take longer to fill a disc than the regular DVD burn times are now (yes, I know, current models are FAR from that). Software that lets me create hi-def movies and directly copy video from hi-def camcorders is also something I would want.

For right now though, I am happy with regular DVD. It's not a question of "if" I jump onto the HD bandwagon but rather just "when".


sony offers that with their setup.

they have a HD camera that can record HD movies, their Sony "Vegas" software lets you edit your movies un-compressed and burn it with their laptops. very expensive but they have the main route you'd take to burning media planned.
April 21, 2007 9:13:46 PM

Yes, I know what you are talking about. I'm familiar with the Sony video editing system as I have worked with them in the past.

I have to say that they are very limited in their usability, since they often require specific versions of other software, such as Quicktime, to be installed on your computer to work at all. Sony also does not guarantee future software updates, meaning that if a newer version of Quicktime comes out, and your Sony software doesn't work with it, then you won't be able to do any editing work without the older version of Quicktime present. That's a real PITA when you're surfing online and 1001 web sites complain that the "latest version of Quicktime" needs to be installed...

As for the Viao laptops, they are just too bleeding-edge for me to use as a serious work tool. Sony enjoys using proprietary hardware/software of all kinds - you will notice Viao machines are loaded with unique/specific drivers that come from Sony only, and at times fail to provide/update/correct them. There's a reason why most systems administrators have nightmares when they need to deal with fixing a Sony. And considering how expensive the top-end Viao laptops cost, for the same price or even slightly less, you can buy better performing hardware from other vendors that let you configure your system without all the brand-name garbage thrown in.

That's not to say I don't like Sony - I own a Sony camcorder and digital camera and I love them both, but I won't be buying a Viao PC or using Sony software to author my DVD's.

If companies such as Pinnacle can introduce support for a wide array of consumer HD video hardware in their editing solutions and Roxio provide full blu-ray/hd-dvd burner support, it will give me a better choice and more reason to upgrade from DVD to HD when the time comes.
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