Tags: blu-ray

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Digital Trends declares Blu-ray dead; HD-DVD the winner

Posted by Some Guy at 2:54pm on Thu Dec 7th 2006
Digital Trends presents this article, in which they declare HD-DVD the clear winner of the next gen battle. Even with far fewer studios currently supporting them, HD-DVD still has considerably more releases (see here) and is much more affordable. Digital Trends' original prediction was Blu-ray would win, partially because of what the PS3 would do for it. That was before both the price of the PS3, and the delays, were announced. Given the current circumstances of the PS3, e.g., it's a complete joke of a system that no one wants, it's understandable how things have changed.

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Sony to include HDMI on 'cheap' PS3

Posted by Some Guy at 7:39pm on Mon Sep 25th 2006
When Sony announced the PS3 specs and prices a few months back, enough bricks were shit to build a house. After the dust settled, fingers stopped being pointed, and laughter was no longer travelling in Sony's general direction (although you can still hear it if you listen hard enough), there was one real sore spot that stood out: the "cheap" PS3 was not going to have an HDMI port. Yes, even though Sony loves bragging about how its PS3 is going to be 1080p for games AND movies, while the X360 is only 1080i, they forgot to mention that 20% of the units shipped would fail to have a connection that supported 1080p.

And now, in a shocking and dramatic movie, Sony has listened to the complaints and has decided to include HDMI on the "cheap" PS3. Of course, this doesn't mean that an HDMI cable will be included with the system. That would just be TOO nice!

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Warner Bros files patent for hybrid Blu-ray/HD-DVD disc

Posted by Some Guy at 7:15pm on Mon Sep 25th 2006
Warner Bros has filed a patent for a new type of hybrid disc that would work in both Blu-ray and HD-DVD players. This is a simliar concept to the often-rumored but never-confirmed hybrid players from the likes of LG and other manufacturers, that would play both Blu-ray and HD-DVD discs.

Considering the current situation of the HD movie market, this may be considered "neat" and/or "cool" by some HD fanatics. But remember that the studios have dug this hole themselves, and I'm finding it very humorous to watch them scramble to get out of it. If they had been patient and reasonable (can you imagine? ha!), only one format would exist, and it would probably be selling a lot better than the dismal pathetic failures that we know as Blu-ray and HD-DVD. While I obviously advocate that you join me in giving the studios the finger, I won't deny that the HD movie market would be a LOT more tempting if there wasn't a 50% chance that you were throwing your money right down the toilet.

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Sony's dropping bombs like....

Posted by Some Guy at 3:20pm on Tue Sep 12th 2006
When was the last time you read something positive about Sony?

Thanks to severe shortages of the blue laser diodes needed for Blu-ray goodness, they have reduced their initial shipments of the PS3 from 2 million to 500K. Not that anyone was planning on buying one... BUT STILL!

Europe gets the finger as usual, they won't see the PS3 until sometime in 2007. That's a huge market that big companies seem to see as second class and completely ignore until they get Asia and USofA all stocked up. And when you consider that the cost of items over there is usually 50% higher than US equivalent, it seems like that'd be pure money.

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Exclusive interview with Blu-ray disc!

Posted by Some Guy at 1:39pm on Sat Aug 19th 2006
Aeropause.com has posted a spoof interview with a Blu-ray disc. Humor is a great way to raise a lot of good points. :)

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EU investigating HD DVD, Blu-ray licensing terms

Posted by Some Guy at 2:01pm on Fri Jul 28th 2006
Those resourceful Europeans! Engadget writes
Both high definition optical disc formats have already seen their share of setbacks in the form of delays and hardware problems, and now they may be facing some nasty anti-trust allegations pending the results of a recently-launched EU probe. Having already flexed its authoritative muscle against Microsoft, the European Commission has now moved on to investigating the terms that the major backers of Blu-ray and HD DVD are exerting upon their respective licensees. Since the investigation is still "unofficial" at this point, the Commission refused to specify the particular companies being probed, although Sony publicly confirmed that it has received one of the letters in question and that it's cooperating with regulators.

If these same regulators decide that nothing fishy is going on, then the matter will be dropped; but if they're displeased with the responses they get, a full anti-trust probe is likely. Best case scenario: only one of the camps ends up being subjected to further scrutiny, leaving the other as clear-cut victor in the format war and saving us all the hassle of choosing sides.

Source: http://news.yahoo.com/s/macworld/20060728/tc_macworld/eu20060728

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Interesting details on Blu-ray's additional security atop AACS

Posted by Some Guy at 12:30am on Wed Jul 26th 2006
A great article with more details about the additional security that Blu-ray employs over AACS. To clear things up, HD-DVD only uses AACS for content protection (AACS is just encryption). Blu-ray takes it to a whole new level, however, with their ROM-Mark and BD+ uber-technology. It's a great read as there has been very little information about these technologies at this point. It's pretty scary stuff, to be honest.

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Blu-ray development must be not be going too well...

Posted by Some Guy at 4:17pm on Tue May 16th 2006
I just came across this story on digg. Apparently Sony was holding some conference for something or other, and part of it was a laptop that supposedly had a Blu-ray drive in it, playing a Blu-ray copy of "House of Flying Daggers". This reporter wanted to see his first Blu-ray disc in person, but upon ejecting the disc (without Sony's knowledge of course), he found a burned DVD-R instead! HA. That is the funniest thing ever! No word if it was actually a Blu-ray drive or not, but it certainly makes you question just how well Blu-ray development is going for Sony... especially considering it's supposed to be released to the masses next month. :P

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Sony cripples Blu-ray movies on Playstation 3

Posted by Some Guy at 3:01pm on Tue May 9th 2006
Last night, Sony released much needed details about the PlayStation 3 due later this year. There will be two versions, $499 w/20GB hard drive, and $599 with 60GB. The size of the hard drive is the only detail they mentioned as the difference, but there are many other important differences they chose not to share in their E3 presentation, one of them being huge: No HDMI output!

As has been mentioned, most first generation HD movies (both Blu-ray and HD-DVD) will not be incorporating the Image Constraint Token (ICT), which downsamples HD output to standard DVD quality unless video is being sent over a digital connection such as HDMI, and DVI in some cases. By excluding an HDMI port on the "cheap" version of the PS3, Sony is essentially making that version completely worthless for future generation HD movies since it will have to be connected via component (analog) cables. Now even if you aren't interested in Blu-ray HD movies, there's still another problem. Component is only capable of 1080i output, while HDMI can do full 1080p, the "gold standard" of HD video. So not only will you be royally screwed for movies, but your video games will also be crippled - not nearly as bad as HD movies of course, but still a slap in the face.

I think this is really just a way to set the price of the PS3 at $600, because only a fool would buy the "cheap" $499 version. Just like no one wants the Xbox 360 Core edition, no one will want this either. Besides all that, it makes the 360 sound incredibly cheap! Of course, the 360 doesn't have a next generation optical drive in it. Considering the cheapest Blu-ray drive will be $1000 when it launches later this month, $600 sounds like a good deal, not to mention the fact that your $600 will also be buying you a nice shiny video game console.

Regardless, Sony really dropped the ball on this one. Don't offer two versions of your console, because no one wants the shitty one. If you feel you must sell it at $600, then sell it at $600 instead of screwing your customers over.

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Tidbits

Posted by Some Guy at 6:27pm on Tue Apr 25th 2006
It's still too early to judge how successful HD-DVD has been. I've been very antsy to post news about it but there are no hard facts right now. I'm really interested to hear how many Netflix users have signed up for it. Supposely they're buying 1,000 of every HD-DVD and Blu-ray title. I'm wondering how many of those have been utilized thus far.

Apple Computer is supposedly in talks with Sony to get iPod compatible versions of movies included on all Blu-ray discs. I have to say that that would be really nifty to see the studios embrace something like that. With 50GB to blow through, there's certainly room. I do wonder how the DRM for that will work, however. (Because you know that's going to be locked up tighter than a nun's.... you know).

Unrelated to the HD sector, but certainly within the scope of this site, it appears that certain someones have been wining and dining their senators of choice into writing a proposal to vastly expand the powers of the DMCA. It's the usual extremely scary, my Lord I wish I didn't live in this country, type of stuff. God have mercy on our souls if the US government is stupid enough to grant such rights to private entities.

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BREAKING NEWS... Yet Another Sony Propietary Format is a total failure!

Posted by Some Guy at 10:51pm on Fri Mar 31st 2006
Betamax. MiniDisc. MemoryStick. ATRAC. What do all of these products have in common? They're all propietary, all created by Sony, and all complete and total failures. So no one should be shocked to hear that Yet Another Sony Propietary Format, this one being the UMD movie format for PSP, is also a complete and total failure. Several major studios have completely stopped releasing UMD movies, many stores are scaling back their inventory, and an anonymous executive at Universal went so far as to say, "It's awful. Sales are near zilch. It's another Sony bomb - like Blu-ray." Mmmmm, now that's some juicy gossip! Universal is currently the only studio who is not supporting Blu-ray, and it sounds like they're already predicting its demise. So now the question is, will Blu-ray also be YASPF failure? Well, history does tend to repeat itself... ;)

But seriously now, people. Is anyone really surprised that consumers didn't want to pay twice for a movie they already owned, only to get it in a crappier format with lesser resolution that only plays on one device that has a tiny screen that you can't even hook up to your TV? Whose brilliant idea was this anyways?

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Some studios backing off from mandatory downsampling (for now)

Posted by Some Guy at 11:35am on Tue Mar 28th 2006
Most major studios have now announced that they won't enable ICT on their movies, at least for the time being. ICT is the Image Constaint Token, which instructs the player to downsample the HD video to "normal" DVD quality, unless connected through a secure digital connection (HDMI or DVI). This "feature" would affect more than 3 million people in the US who do not have digital HDTVs. Considering that the studios were all demanding this type of "security" before they agreed to release their movies on Blu-ray or HD-DVD, this is a rather surprising turn of events. Have the studios decided that maybe they've gone too far with their control over consumers? Please. It's much more probable that this move is to help ease all the confusion that they've created with regards to next generation DVD. Just remember - ICT is a permanent feature. The studios can enable it again any time they want in the future, and they very likely will.

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Japan's hardware players to be less restricted

Posted by Some Guy at 2:17pm on Wed Mar 22nd 2006
When it comes to that illusive analog hole, Japan's got it good. All HD players sold in Japan through the end of 2010 will not be allowed to downsample HD output over analog (component) connections, since apparently most HDTV's over yonder are not digital. Interestingly enough, Japan will also have the same region code as the US for Blu-ray (not sure about HD-DVD), which means a player bought over there will play all discs you buy over here. The MPAA's blatant disregard for the A-hole is amongst my biggest complaints. If your HDTV doesn't have a HDMI or HDCP-compliant DVI port, of which there are over 3 million, it sounds like you'll be able to get around this problem with an imported player. So the question remains: How hard and how expensive will it be to import one these players? This question of course comes after the much more important question, Why do I have to go to such great lengths to rightfully watch high definition movies over analog connections? While pondering, hopefully you will come to the conclusion that you shouldn't be supporting such outrageousness, not now, and not ever.

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HD-DVD release delayed, weak sales expected

Posted by Some Guy at 6:04pm on Sat Mar 18th 2006
Warner, who is supposedly going to be the first studio to release movies on HD-DVD, has delayed their first releases by three weeks from March 28 to April 18. Toshiba has said they are likely to delay the release of their players to match the launch of the first content, though they haven't officially announced it yet. HD-DVD's first-to-market advantage over Blu-ray is getting smaller and smaller, and now looks like they'll beat Blu-ray to market by only one month. (Blu-ray is currently scheduled to launch May 23). This is unfortunate because if it were life and death, and I had to choose between HD-DVD or Blu-ray, I would take HD-DVD any day of the week. I mean, considering all the crap Sony has pulled, I just don't like them anymore.

Also, Toshiba is apparently only shipping 10,000 total HD-DVD players for its intial launch, indicating they aren't exactly expecting steller sales. Of course, with only three movies at launch, it shouldn't be too surprising.

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PlayStation 3 delayed until November

Posted by Some Guy at 6:22pm on Fri Mar 17th 2006
Look's like everyone's hope for a cheap Blu-ray player sometime soon just went bye bye. (Cheap being a relative term of course.) Sony today announced that the PlayStation 3 will be delayed until November. Supposedly they are working on some extra security features to protect the games from being copied. They're also probably doing it to save a ton of money. I'm sure they'll still lose money initially on PS3 hardware sales, but at that point Blu-ray will have been on the market for 6 months so their manufacturing costs will have come down significantly. We'll see what happens!

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