Saturday, September 09, 2006

DVDs are rubbish

I was a late adopter of DVD technology for several reasons:
  • The players were too expensive
  • The disks were too expensive
  • I resented buying films again
Market forces get you in the end. The price of DVD players fell below £25 so I bought one and was disapointed. The quality wasn't brilliant, the menus and extra features are rubbish, the navigation around the film is poor and they are still expensive. When you watch a perfectly legal DVD you are bombarded with a couple of minutes of logos, copyright warnings and anti-piracy films which you can't fast-forward.

I found that DVD rental is the answer, that way I don't need an expensive collection of DVDs and box sets. Now DVD is about to be replaced by either Sony's Blueray or Toshiba's HD DVD, or both. The quality of the image on these disks is akin to HDTV. What difference does this mean to us consumers? See the sample image I've created below from the Over the Hedge high definition trailer:
Comparison of DVD picture with HDTV
HDTV is clearly better than the quality being pedelled by current DVD so everyone will have to buy their collections all over again. Oh, and you'll need an £800 HD DVD player an £800 Blueray player and a £1200 flatscreen HDTV. You need one of each type of player because they are mutually incompatible and most films will only be available in one format or the other, not both. If you want to see your normal televison pictures in high definition you'll need a Sky-HD box (£299) and pay another ten pounds a month on top of your existing subscription and then you'll only get a small amount of real HD programmes.

If you go to one of the big electronics stores, such as Currys, to choose your new HDTV you'll find that they have a vast array of HD ready TVs in all shapes and sizes, most of which are showing fuzzy, stretched low definition pictures for some reason.

I think I'll wait until the players cost less than £25.



Blogger Polarbear said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6:39 pm  
Blogger Glynn said...

They may be able to, they just can't play BlueRay discs. Half the studios will release their films on HD-DVD, the other half on BlueRay. Only Warner Brothers (I think) will release their films on both.

I'm not sure if either system can play old DVDs. Chaos is bound to ensue anyway.

8:37 am  
Blogger Joe Berenguer said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

7:15 pm  
Blogger Polarbear said...

I saw last night that the clever Koreans have made a player that will play both blu-ray and HD-DVD.

11:10 am  

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