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Blu-Ray/HD-DVD Talks End

Zonk posted more than 8 years ago | from the begun-the-format-wars-have dept.

389

Last minute talks to unify the HD-DVD and Blu-Ray formats have failed. Matsushita, owner of the Panasonic brand, has stated 'the market will decide the winner.' From the article: "The two sides held talks last year in the hopes of avoiding a prolonged format battle similar to the one between Betamax and VHS videotapes in the 1980s, knowing that it could discourage consumers from shifting to the advanced discs and stifle the industry's growth. But the talks soon fizzled out, with each side reluctant to establish a format based on the other's disc structure. At stake is the $24 billion home video market and a slice of the personal computer market as PCs will be equipped with Blu-ray or HD DVD optical drives."

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Games?? (-1, Offtopic)

Devistater (593822) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206896)

How is this in the Games category? There's far more MOVIES in dvd than games, just like there probably will be with blu-ray and hd dvd :)

Re:Games?? (1)

joshetc (955226) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206918)

there is no movies section...

Re:Games?? (2, Informative)

falcon5768 (629591) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206921)

because in the end it will be game systems that decide this, with the PS3 having a Blue-ray drive out of the box, and the 360 having a HD add-on before the end of the year.

Its not a unknown fact that for many people, the PS2 was their first DVD player.

Re:Games?? (2, Interesting)

mikeisme77 (938209) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207004)

It's an even lesser known fact that when the PS2 first launched in Japan that despite it selling out, few people were buying any games... The PS2 was the least expensive DVD player available in Japan at the time (much like the PS3 will be the least expensive high def disc player worldwide) and the games at the launch of the PS2 were lackluster (many suffering from anti-aliasing and other problems). People bought the systems just as a DVD player during the first few months--although I'm sure that most (if not all) of them bought at least one game after the first 3 months of the Japanese launch (when better games started coming out/programming issues were fixed).

Re:Games?? (1)

joshsisk (161347) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207067)

However, this time around, it won't be as big a deal since anyone could buy a PS2 and a DVD and see a big improvement over their VCR. With the nextgen discs, if you don't have a HDTV, you won't see any real improvement. So (I would think) a smaller # of people will buy a PS3 to act as a budget DVD player. Some will, but it's not like the VHS-to-DVD transition...

I was among the first people to buy a DVD player (had one years before the PS2 came out), and I will not be on the cusp of HD/BR disc because I don't have an HDTV and don't feel like upgrading yet... gonna wait for prices to fall a bit more/the winner of the disc war to be decided.

Re:Games?? (2, Interesting)

mikeisme77 (938209) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207108)

Personally, I don't think either format will win. My personal belief is that they're creating a solution to a "problem" that doesn't exist yet. They are building a product that would be useful to less than 10% of the worldwide market (those who actually have HDTVs). I see these new formats as a way of pushing more restrictive DRM and with the "format war" I see it very likely that they'll just bleed each other to death.

Re:Games?? (1)

falcon5768 (629591) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207193)

well to be honest, the first DVDs where not much of a improvment over tapes either. the few I have from that time period where all obviously poorly done video tape transfers.

But a good marketing exec doesnt need things to be at a point to make it happen, they just need YOU to think its at that point. See CDs and computers, or even DVDs and computers.

Re:Games?? (1)

ShrikeDOA (118272) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207085)

Actually they had aliasing problems. Anti-aliasing would have fixed it. :)

Re:Games?? (1)

Daniel_Staal (609844) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206929)

Probably because the likely winner is whomever's console wins the next round of the console wars. That'll be the largest installed base of players for a while: consoles that can play movies.

Forget technical merit of the disks. This is going to be decided based on XBox and PlayStation sales.

Just fine (4, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206904)

The two standards are too different to unify. The disc is different, the data layout is different, the means for handling interactivity are different, the codec is different... EVERYTHING is different. My only regret is that there are so many variables that we may not really learn anything about which is the best product based on who succeeds and who sucks seed... we may only learn who had better marketing.

Just fine-Unifying VHS/Beta. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15206977)

Differences that might have been significent back in the VHS/Beta days. But technology has advanced a great deal and "differences" can be overcomed. The only issue is an economic one.

Re:Just fine (5, Insightful)

ivan256 (17499) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207055)

They have so much in common though... The laser is the same, the lens is the same, the disc size and thus the tray, motors, and mechanicals are the same, the outputs are the same, the processing power requirements are the same... All that's different from the player's perspective is the focus and the software.

All you are going to learn is that players are going to cost $LICENSING_FEE more than they would have, and the players will play both.

Re:Just fine (0)

amliebsch (724858) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207117)

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe that HD-DVD uses a tightly-focused traditional red laser, while Blu-Ray uses, um, a blue one. So actually they do use two different lasers, lenses, and probably mechanicals.

Re:Just fine (4, Informative)

amliebsch (724858) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207165)

Correcting myself: I misremembered - while HD-DVD will can use a single-lens assembly with both red and blue for backwards-compatibility, the HD laser is actually blue. So you were right about the laser!

Re:Just fine (1)

LunaticTippy (872397) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207133)

I hope both formats die.

Failing that, I hope they both survive, ending up as +/- did for dvd. There's really no reason we can't have $50 dual format burners in 5 years.

Re:Just fine (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15207083)

The codec is different? Bullshit. Both support MPEG-2, WMV9 (aka VC-1) and MPEG-4 AVC.

Re:Just fine (1)

zippthorne (748122) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207139)

The codec is irrelevant. The data layout is irrelevant. The interactivity handling is even irrelevant. All of that is handled in the software. What it all boils down to is the means of putting the ones and zeros on the disk. can they be read by the same laser & optics? if so, they are really the *same* format regardless of the other gobbledigook thrown in there to confuse the issue.

Re:Just fine (1, Insightful)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207205)

The codec is irrelevant. The data layout is irrelevant. The interactivity handling is even irrelevant.

I'm sure the programmers developing the reference implementations of the two standards would love to hear that.

The standard includes both the physical media and the software. Nothing specified is irrelevant. You are a boob.

the 'market' (3, Insightful)

celardore (844933) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206911)

It's right that the 'market' will decide the 'winner'.

It's just unfortunate that the market powers are the producers rather than the consumers. History repeating itself again. And again.

Re:the 'market' (5, Interesting)

dmeranda (120061) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206974)

"the market will decide the winner"

Just another way of saying, "We're okay if 49.9% of the consumers
get screwed. We'll screw the surviving 50.1% later."

the 'market' Votes. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15207054)

"It's just unfortunate that the market powers are the producers rather than the consumers. History repeating itself again. And again."

Um the "market powers" aren't the one's with the "coverted" dollars that'll make the decision.

Your choices are.

  • Don't buy either one and stick with DVD.

    Buy Blue-Ray, and not the other.

    Buy HD-DVD and not the other.

    Buy both and make someone very happy.

    Wait for a unified drive.


In ALL cases you have the power of a monetary vote. Now, if you choose to NOT exercise it, and just persist in whining on slashdot about "market powers". You will get what you deserve, and no one should feel sympathetic towards your plight.

Re:the 'market' Votes. (1)

celardore (844933) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207127)

In ALL cases you have the power of a monetary vote. Now, if you choose to NOT exercise it, and just persist in whining on slashdot about "market powers". You will get what you deserve, and no one should feel sympathetic towards your plight.

I might vote with my currency, but that doesn't stop two other 'monetary voters' placing their vote based on advertising and other uninformed or poorly evaluated decision cancelling, thus my vote out.

Hence, the market power is with the producer - they who advertise and generally sell their product better wins! Regardless of other factors. Money matters, like you said.

Re:the 'market' Votes. (1)

TheJediGeek (903350) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207141)

In ALL cases you have the power of a monetary vote. Now, if you choose to NOT exercise it, and just persist in whining on slashdot about "market powers". You will get what you deserve, and no one should feel sympathetic towards your plight.

There's a major flaw in your logic/flame. If someone doesn't exercise their "vote" but instead will "just persist in whining on slashdot" that would in effect be exercising your first option to not buy either and stick with DVD.

DOA? (0, Redundant)

ClamIAm (926466) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206913)

The subject pretty much sums it up.

How to predict the winner (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15206919)

First determine the one with the all round better technical specifications.

Then bet on the other.

And the winner is... (4, Insightful)

Buddy_DoQ (922706) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206924)

Regular DVD!

Hell, my HDTV is always in HD anyway, why would I need HD or ray's blue DVD's? That's just stupid!*

*This comment is a joke, but it is widely believed to be true in the consumer world.

Re:And the winner is... (5, Insightful)

RingDev (879105) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207020)

All jokes aside, Regular DVDs are going to be the reigning king for a while to come. Both formats will have a hard time gaining wide spread acceptance as long as the competitor is out there. Especially since in the movie arena, neither has any current offerings that provide consumers with a large tangible advantage over regular DVDs. Movies @ 1024i are pretty, but they are not hundreds of dollars prettier then Movies @ 480p (err what ever EDTV/DVDs are recorded at).

-Rick

*scoff* (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15207089)

Psssh, why should I buy an HDTV when the commercial on TV clearly showed how much crisper an HD image is than regular images on my TV? I don't need an HDTV, the cable channels just need to broadcast in HD, and my picture quality will improve automatically. I'm not shelling out money for a new TV when the broadcast signal does all the work necessary!

...
why is my security word "cocaine"?

Price (1)

eledu81 (924645) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206928)

I will pick the cheaper for sure... and I think a lot of people will do the same.

Re:Price (1)

TheJediGeek (903350) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207182)

Yup, the sub $100 standard DVD player. Retailers will be hard pressed to sell either to consumers for $1000. How many retailers will try to show a Blu-Ray or HD-DVD player on a nice HDTV and try to sell it, but there will be another HDTV next to it with a regular DVD player connected.
There's just isn't enough difference, other than bragging rights, for most people to shell out for an HD-DVD player.

Wish they'd started sooner... (1)

Kaellenn (540133) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206930)

Wish they'd talk about it from the beginning instead of trying to beat each other to the punch and then act as if they were going to unify the standard.

This is just extremely unfortunate for consumers--I'm personally not touching either of the formats until this issue is resolved.

Re:Wish they'd started sooner... (2, Insightful)

mbowles (320826) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207126)

Amen!

I bought BetaMax becuase it was the superior technology not relaizing I should have been paying attention to who had the best marketing.

Only when there is one format left will I even begin to consider purchasing a HD-DVD.

In their pissing contest they are only hurting themselves by delaying acceptance and thereby sales.

Re:Wish they'd started sooner... (1)

Rick.C (626083) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207191)

Wish they'd talk about it from the beginning instead of trying to beat each other to the punch and then act as if they were going to unify the standard.

When the two formats were on the drawing boards, they were closely guarded trade secrets. Each side would never consider even telling the other what they were working on, let alone divulge the details.

It's all a waste of time. (1, Insightful)

dick pubes (963843) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206934)

These new disc formats are all dead in the long run.

Perhaps not immediately, but within a few years a system will exist which will allow the streaming of any movie ever made via broadband instantly. Why would you want to bother keeping an anachronistic collection of shiny discs, when you could have anything you want, instantly.

These format wars will all look quaint in a few years when the bandwidth for home delivery of such a system is widely available.

Re:It's all a waste of time. (1)

thelem (218540) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206973)

That bandwidth is already available for music, yet CD albums still far outsell download albums.

Re:It's all a waste of time. (3, Interesting)

Dis*abstraction (967890) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206978)

All life is staving off the inevitable. It's what you do in the meantime that makes it interesting.

Re:It's all a waste of time. (1)

955301 (209856) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206981)


Grandma. She doesn't have this "broadband" thing you speak of, and she lives out on a farm. So I'll burn a few movies for her and bring them along with me on my next visit.

Besides, the long run isn't here quite yet. So long as there is a gap, big, small, or otherwise, there will most likely be a company of appropriate size trying to capitalize on it.

Re:It's all a waste of time. (5, Insightful)

Teddy Beartuzzi (727169) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206984)

Because people like shiny, tangible things. They call them possessions. It's why e-books have not, and will not replace books.

Re:It's all a waste of time. (1)

Chowderbags (847952) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207063)

That and because you can't cuddle up to a computer next to the fire. Books don't take power, or have anything that can be broken besides the paper itself being ripped/smudged, and computer screens are hard on the eyes after awhile, especially with all the whitespace that would be used for books.

Re:It's all a waste of time. (2, Insightful)

joshsisk (161347) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207160)

Ehh, there is a big difference, however, between an e-book and a book. The way you interact with them is different. The form factor of the book is a huge advantage when it comes to readability, usability, expendability, etc... If my paperback gets something spilled on it, oh well. If I leave it on the train, oh well. I can read while i fall asleep and if it falls out of my fingers onto the hardwood floor, it will be fine. It will never run out of batteries.

The way you'd watch a downloaded/on-demand movie is not that much different from the way you'd watch a DVD - you don't interact with the disc at all, except to put it in the player. In fact, no disc is better since you don't have to change discs to watch different movies.

The main problem with on-demand is that it will be quite awhile until it can offer as big a library as DVDs can... You can get really obscure stuff on DVD now, but could an on-demand service offer that? Downloads could, but getting the stuff from your PC to the TV is a pain for the average person, plus download speeds aren't quite there yet.

Home movies will likely eventually be mostly downloaded/streamed, with a smaller "on disc" market, but it's a ways off... I used to think like you "it'll never happen", but I thought that way about music too, and now I can't even imagine buying a physical CD, unless it's from a band at their concert (because if it's a local or small band they probably aren't on itunes).

Re:It's all a waste of time. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15206990)

Huh?

The fact that broadband is becoming faster and (one day) may be "instantaneous", like you suggest, is great. But that won't eliminate the need for nonvolatile, solid state storage.

K.

two words: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15207010)

pack rats.

How many figurines do you have sitting on your desk at home? at work? in your car? along your virgin bed's headboard, across your dresser and on your bookshelves? Yeah... pack rat.

Same mentality, but directed at movie freaks who must own every version of their favorite movies ever made and argue in their chatgroups which is better. I had a roommate in college who had more movies than there were days in a year, and he watched them all the damn time. He watched 2 or 3 a day, and bought several a month. He was also an alcoholic and a bit of a shut in, but still, dude had a ton of friggin movies. He works at Target now.

Re:It's all a waste of time. (2, Insightful)

dnaumov (453672) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207037)

"Perhaps not immediately, but within a few years a system will exist which will allow the streaming of any movie ever made via broadband instantly."

I have been hearing this for the past... what... 10 years now? The cold, hard truth is that there are ENORMOUS markets (asia, russia, many countries in south america and africa) which WILL NOT have the bandwidth required for this for many years to come. As long as this is the case, hard media will continue to exist and drive big business. HD-DVD and Blu-Ray movies have a datarate of 8-9 MB/s (which is rather impressive, considering they are packing about 6 times the amount of video data due to the increased resolution, into the same bitrate DVD video is in). Forget about Asia, how many people in the US actually have lines that fast?

Re:It's all a waste of time. (1)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207220)

HD-DVD and Blu-Ray movies have a datarate of 8-9 MB/s

And CDs have a data rate of 150KB/s, but that didn't stop modem users deciding that 128Kb/s (16KB/s) was 'good enough.' DVDs are 3-10Mb/s. This year, my ISP is upgrading all of their customers to 10Mb/s[1]. This means that my connection will be fast enough to stream a DVD. Using MPEG-4, I can get the same quality for about 1-2Mb/s - a speed I already have.

HD quality is nice, but for me DVD quality is 'good enough.' Actually, for a lot of non-geeks I've talked to VHS quality is 'good enough' and they can't really see any improvement from DVD without a side-by-side comparison.

The movie industry has made DVDs so expensive to buy that they are out of my cost/value range for the most part. I still rent them, because that costs a very small amount (an average of around 50p/disk), but I would stop doing even that if I could get video on demand over IP.

[1] They are going to start charging by total throughput rather than max speed.

Re: It's all a waste of time. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15207073)

If it only goes over broadband, then it would be a pay per view... I'd rather own a DVD.

Re:It's all a waste of time. (2, Insightful)

Reality Master 101 (179095) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207086)

Perhaps not immediately, but within a few years a system will exist which will allow the streaming of any movie ever made via broadband instantly.

Apparently you've never used a portable DVD player.

Nor have you ever had kids who watch the same movie a LOT of times (and I'd rather not pay for each view).

Re:It's all a waste of time. (1)

steveo777 (183629) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207107)

Unless broadband with that much bandwith costs 3bucks a month, I can't afford it. So, yeah, I'll just live with my shiny discs and my friends' shiny discs. I don't buy a lot. And I may watch one or two movies a month, but I won't spend more than a few bucks to sit on my ass.

Re:It's all a waste of time. (1)

umedia (964947) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207118)

"These new disc formats are all dead in the long run."

Beyond DVD's are the point of diminishing returns. They had good quality, fair price.

Frankly judging from the pricing of the new formats if I want "more real", I'll go with the cheap hooker...

Re:It's all a waste of time. (1)

SchrodingersRoot (943800) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207188)

well, for one thing, 'cause i like having tangibles.
i'm also a packrat, for what that's worth.
but i can think of lots of reasons one might want to have a physical copy

privacy reasons, mobility, geek cred.

not to mention there are still logistical problems with media distribution. (storage vs. streaming, alarms about piracy, the lack of ubiquity of broadband, etc)

as an aside, i find the argument that "These new disc formats are all dead in the long run" to be kind of silly, if only because that's pretty well true of ALL formats. bigger, better, faster formats will always be a goal, to the very limit that science allows.

anyway, it'll probably come, but personally, i doubt it'll happen in time to suddenly obsolete the upcoming generation of format. moreover, there are social attitudes that would have to be overcome before people will be universally willing to relinquish having their own physical copies of things. i don't see that changing in this generation.

the paperless office uses more paper than ever. e-books don't replace books. and geeks like me will always want to show off their favorites. ;)

Re:It's all a waste of time. (2, Interesting)

heli0 (659560) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207217)

"but within a few years a system will exist which will allow the streaming of any movie ever made via broadband instantly."

Remember the Qwest commercial set in a motel from around 2000? "We have every movie ever made, in every language, any time, night or day."

When do I expect to see streaming 1080p 48Mbps video over a "content-neutral" Internet? Not during the lifetime of Blu-Ray/HD-DVD.

DRM == none of the above (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15206935)

Remember DIVX? Not the codec of today. No? Good. Lets do a repeat.

Lift your wallet (4, Funny)

neonprimetime (528653) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206940)

"It's now a test of physical strength," Tsuga said.
Matsushita plans to launch DVD players later this year with a price tag likely to top $1,000.


Customers will need to workout just so they can lift their wallet up to the counter to pay for it!

Re:Lift your wallet (1)

zippthorne (748122) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207163)

With the price of gold these days, it's not so much of a workout as it used to be.

The message is clear: (1)

THE MESSAGE IS CLEAR (947711) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206947)

The format wars have FAILED.

Third way (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15206949)

Samsung long ago announced [theregister.co.uk] that if the two high density blue laser DVD camps couldn't make up and get along, that they were just going to go ahead and start building drives capable of playing both hd dvd and bluray. That is to say, if the two camps cannot unify, then Samsung will unify them whether they want it or not. At least one other manufacturer whose name I forget has announced similar plans. I cannot help but wonder how popular this approach will become.

I also cannot help but wonder, faced with two contradictory and low-uptake standards, how many stores will actually want to stock hddvd or bluray discs? It seems to me that the only chance either HD-DVD or Blu-Ray has of actually getting widely stocked is by making dual-capability DVDs that can be played on either a next-gen dvd player, or a current gen dvd player (both next-gen formats support this; it's done by burning a disc with one layer of DVD and one layer of hddvd-or-bluray).

Re:Third way (1)

Azarael (896715) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207057)

Unfortunately, these kind of drives will be a lot more expensive to produce since they will have to support both laser wavelengths. I also wonder how error prone they'll be as there were some reliability problems with CD/DVD combo drives. In the long run though, you will probably right and this will work out.

On your second point, I wouldn't want to deal with customer confusion over the multiple similar movie formats either. Consumers are a lot more tech-savvy but with all the different disk-based movie formats, there are bound to be a lot of mistaken purchases.

Re:Third way (1)

ergo98 (9391) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207103)

I also wonder how error prone they'll be as there were some reliability problems with CD/DVD combo drives.

?

Is there a DVD player in the world that can't read CD, now or ever? What reliability problem has there ever been with that?

Re:Third way (1)

Azarael (896715) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207177)

Apperently it was somewhat common for the first couple of generations of combo drive writers to stop working with either CDs or DVDs after a while. I had forgotten that this was for writers though, so I guess the point is moot.

Re:Third way (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15207136)

Unfortunately, these kind of drives will be a lot more expensive to produce since they will have to support both laser wavelengths. I also wonder how error prone they'll be as there were some reliability problems with CD/DVD combo drives. In the long run though, you will probably right and this will work out.

Sure, they might be more expensive at first... but how long did it take for DVD-R/DVD+R dual-format drives to come down in price? Nowadays it's hard to find a drive that doesn't support both technologies... I would imagine that the same will eventually happen with HD-DVD/BluRay..

Re:Third way (2, Insightful)

Babbster (107076) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207232)

I wouldn't worry that much about the extra expense, at least not from Samsung. They managed to drive CRT HDTV prices down very quickly once they got into the market with some aggressive pricing, and I would expect them to do the same with Blu-Ray/HD-DVD. That said, all of the HD-format players are going to be expensive for at least the next year - probably too expensive for either format to gain significant marketshare given the relatively low (but growing) penetration of HDTVs.

IF either format has any hope of "winning" the first year, though, I think it's HD-DVD. Considering that the flagship players of HD-DVD and Blu-Ray have MSRPs of US$500 and $1,000 respectively, it's going to be an uphill battle getting anyone but die-hard PS3 fans to buy BR...

Re:Third way (1)

MachDelta (704883) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207180)

Both LG and JVC are supposedly considering building dual HDDVD/Bluray players too.

Re:Third way (3, Informative)

jafac (1449) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207206)

Actually, I heard Samsung decided not to go ahead with the Combo player due to some hidden licensing issues.

But LG Electric is going to produce a combo, and they decided to challenge those licensing terms in court.

As for Matsushita, fuck them. in both eye sockets.

Hybrid Drives (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15206957)

I'll just wait until there's a drive out there capable of playing both HD-DVD and Blu-Ray discs (as well as DVDs, CDs, MP3s etc..) Then I won't care what disc I pick up at the store (as long as it doesn't say PSP). If one of the formats wins, well, it'll just become a useless feature on those hybrid drives.

Winner! Pah (0, Troll)

el_womble (779715) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206961)

Unless the manufacturers sign a deal which states otherwise, there will be dual format players with 18 months of Blu-rays debut. After that it simply won't matter what format your media comes on letting media houses pick the disc that suits their economics, with one exception, the PS3 which will still only play Blu-ray, which lets face it, is better than either the 360 or the Revolution.

Unlike Betamax verses VHS, both HD-DVD and Blu-ray are essentially the same form factor and technology. The initial concerns about Blu-rays new process being expensive will be blown out of the water by PS3 media sales, increased capacity and no pesky legal copying, which will interest film houses, HD-DVD has friendlier copyright and already has fabs producing cheap media. We could see a genuine 50/50 split in the market, healthy competition and low prices for consumers!

Re:Winner! Pah (1, Insightful)

GweeDo (127172) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207029)

PS3 which will still only play Blu-ray, which lets face it, is better than either the 360 or the Revolution.

What the crap did that have to do with the topic at hand?

Re:Winner! Pah (1)

ivan256 (17499) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207185)

I think what he meant was that the 360 and the revolution don't play either format.

HD-DVD no friendlier in terms of copying (2, Informative)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207042)

...HD-DVD has friendlier copyright and already has fabs producing cheap media...

I wish people would stop propogating the myth that HD-DVD has "better" copyright abilities. Both formats use the exact same DRM scheme. Both allow managed copy (HOWEVER please read up on what managed copy really means, it's not like a REAL copy ability).

Heck, Blu-Ray discs from Sony (at least at first) will let you have full res video over analog connections, have any HD-DVD studios followed suit? That would seem to tilt the copyright niceness a little towards Blu-Ray, though not much... both are pretty laden with protections.

Re:HD-DVD no friendlier in terms of copying (1)

Zontar_Thing_From_Ve (949321) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207134)

Heck, Blu-Ray discs from Sony (at least at first) will let you have full res video over analog connections, have any HD-DVD studios followed suit?

Yes they have on discs already released such as Serenity although there are no guarantees to continue to do so forever. Failure to do so would have had extremely negative consequences as those with older HDTVs that only have the analog connections would never consider supporting the form had that happened. However, the studios would prefer not to allow this because it somehow will "lead to piracy", so it is possible that a few years from now they may not support full res video on analog connections any more when they assume that the majority of HDTV owners have HDMI connectors and the studios think they can afford to screw over the owners of older HDTV sets.

Thanks (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207168)

Yes they have on discs already released such as Serenity....

Thanks, I had not heard HD-DVD studios were doing the same thing - good to know. So that really means in terms of protections they are identical.

Even though studios could make that more restrictive in the future I really don't think they will reach a point where they actually do that, as it will still put off a lot of users of the format and I think they would get a lot of complaints. Any studio that dares to do so for the next several years at least would face a huge consumer backlash.

Should have picked a better name then. (5, Insightful)

eMartin (210973) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206965)

These days everyone knows what HD means. These days most people have DVD players.

Blu-Ray? What's that?

Exactly HD-DVD's problem (2, Interesting)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207098)

These days everyone knows what HD means. These days most people have DVD players.

Blu-Ray? What's that?


Yes, so people will "know" they have an HD TV, and "know" they have a DVD player - and so will not purchase HD-DVD players, just the discs - which they will then return in droves (or alternatley they will be buying dual format discs, which will lead them to wonder what the big deal is since those discs look just like DVDs - again leading many to not purchase HD-DVD players).

Meanwhile amidst the consumer confusion of HD-DVD the shiny new blue discs obviously need a different player, and hey look! I was going to buy a PS3 anyway. And it even works with my old HD TV without HDMI connections (Sony announced all movies they release on Blu-Ray will allow full resolution even on older analog connections).

After a few million PS3's are sold there will literally be an order of magnitude more Blu-Ray players around than HD-DVD units, and it's game over at that point as Blu-Ray wins through sheer economy of scale.

Re:Should have picked a better name then. (1)

MobyDisk (75490) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207102)

But few consumers actually have to know what it means before they buy it. That's what marketing takes care of. Most consumers don't know what HD is except that it is better because it means peoples faces look more squished and that must be good for some reason.

Re:Should have picked a better name then. (1)

imboboage0 (876812) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207121)

Blu-Ray? What's that?
The same could be argued in reverse.

I already have HD and my DVD player works fine on it. But this 'Blu-Ray' stuff... THAT sounds like the new high quality technology I've been hearing about...

Re:Should have picked a better name then. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15207147)

Yes, Even I know it means Hard Disk!

blu-ray all the way! (-1)

sirius sam (963847) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206968)

I'm in favor of all out Blu-Ray. Blu-Ray is an actual technology to fit more data onto a disk. HD DVD is simply a format. You can still store HD DVD format using Blu-Ray technology. Also, HD DVD can only store between 4 and 7 gigs per disk. Blu-Ray uses a 405nm blue laser, and can store 15 gigs on a one layered disk, 30 gigs on a dual layered disk.

Re:blu-ray all the way! (5, Insightful)

kextyn (961845) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207032)

Umm...what?! Please check again.

HD-DVD [wikipedia.org] Blu Ray [wikipedia.org]

As you can see the difference is quite a bit.

Re:blu-ray all the way! (0, Troll)

Craig Davison (37723) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207043)

They're both larger-capacity discs than DVD. Blu-Ray just happens to have a higher capacity.
The capacity of Blu-ray is 25GB per layer, whereas HD-DVD is 15 (or 20GB?) per layer.

Re:blu-ray all the way! (1)

Craig Davison (37723) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207069)

Looks like HD-DVD is 15GB per layer. Some websites with bad information are saying 20GB.

Re:blu-ray all the way! (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15207061)

Don't call this insightful when it's just simply wrong.

How can the /. crowd not recognize this?

the best hybrid (1)

doesitmakeitsick (963842) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206985)

why not just use Blu-Ray technolgy and HD-DVD name? Lets have one technology and an agreed royalty share - an effective buy-out. At least this way it will save millions in marketing in a format war, and both groups get a degree of guarenteed success. and more importantly will allow me to enjoy the format sooner as i won't have to wait for winner.

They both have Digital Rights Management (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15206987)

Therefore, I will choose neither. It's a shame, too, because I would have liked having 50GB per disk.

C'est la vie.

Consumers lose out... (1)

Stickerboy (61554) | more than 8 years ago | (#15206996)

Porn aficionados will have to buy BOTH types of players in order to ensure they can enjoy the 31 different angles in HD for the money shot. Or wait a while to let the loser die out in the marketplace.

Lite-On will soo save the day.. (1)

brxndxn (461473) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207021)

$5 says Lite-on comes out and poops on the whole battle and hacks together a drive that reads both formats just like the DVDr formats. Then, this whole stupid fight will be a moot point since every manufacturer will copy and we can get back to arguing the real battles.. namely ATI and NVIDIA.. and AMD and INTEL.

There is a difference here (1)

majortom1981 (949402) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207024)

The difference here is that an hd-dvd player will still be less then what it costs to buy a ps3.

Re:There is a difference here (0, Troll)

pl1ght (836951) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207052)

I think thats a horrible point. Not many kids are going to ask mommy and daddy for a HD-DVD player because its cheaper than a PS3 for their BDay or Xmas or whatever. I know ppl love to hate sony, but they shouldnt underestimate the PS3s ability to saturate the market with blu-ray. Why should any of us who are going to get PS3s bother with HD-DVD? Thats why im personally holding out, not because i think one is better than the other, but because I'm going to get a PS3 anyway.

Difference in functionality (1)

SuperKendall (25149) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207138)

The difference here is that an hd-dvd player will still be less then what it costs to buy a ps3.

Yes, but the PS3 will be of much greater value since you'll be able to use it for games, not just new PS3 games but also PS2 games as well. That's a box with a huge amount of value compared to an HD-DVD system where you'll be able to choose from perhaps 100 titles (that you might already own or not even be interested in watching anyway!) by the time the PS3 launches.

You are thinking of it in raw cost of boxes, but think of it this way - you're deciding to buy one of the next gen hi-def video players, where on the Blu-Ray side you get a whole gaming system for just $100 more (or whatever the difference is).

"Home video" market? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15207039)

I always thought "home video" meant amateur video (which basically equates to illegal these days whether or not it involves piracy).

Rundown of the differences (1)

lucky130 (267588) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207041)

I know most of this information has been seen on here before, but I'd really like to see a succinct side-by-side comparison of the two formats as far as capacity (on material that's actually going to be released soon, not 'possibly later' capacities), access speed, price and DRM schema.

winner = lowest consumer cost of course (1)

resfilter (960880) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207051)

what i'm wondering is, which technology will cost the least to the consumer, in both media production and consumer-grade hardware seems it's never the superior format that wins, it's the cheapest technology that's 'good enough for most people'. i don't know enough about either technology to make an estimate, but i assume it must be pretty obvious at this point, which one will be cheaper to roll out onto the market?

Market Decides = Consumers Screwed (2, Insightful)

SupremeDiety (658660) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207060)

And what's the problem with digital delivery? It seems to be working for the porn industry...

What can I say that hasn't been said a million times before. This is yet another example of how closed door meetings determine the course of our society and how the rich and powerful control the interests of the entire earth.

This is something that rests uneasy in me, because I don't want to adopt a standard that fades. I don't want one of my favorite movies to be ONLY HD DVD and not Blu-Ray.

And the worst part is,

Here we go with another round of re-mastering and reselling. Just like the record industry and archiving their vinyl library to CD, or the previous migration from VHS to DVD, here is ANOTHER round of $20-$50 gotta haves to line the pockets of the man.

And the future will hold?

They will blame US again, when the reissues stop selling, they will blame internet traffic for the lack of sales, the industry is stabbing the same medium they MUST adopt to if they are to survive!

So what can YOU do?

Force them to make a decision, instead of making all of us gamble on their indecisiveness! Don't be an early adopting sucker, even if pride and envy tug at your wallethand.

This is like going to war based on manufactured intelligence & opinion poll results.

should read... (2, Insightful)

dsands1 (183088) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207097)

"Last minute talks to unify the HD-DVD and Blu-Ray formats have failed. Matsushita, owner of the Panasonic brand, has stated 'the market will decide the winner."

should read:

Last minute talks to unify the HD-DVD and Blu-Ray formats have failed. Matsushita, owner of the Panasonic brand, has stated 'the consumer will have to pay for our greed and inability to compromise'.

Good! (5, Insightful)

iminplaya (723125) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207128)

With all the DRM and other crippling measures, nothing would please me more than to see both formats die and rot in hell.

No Contest (1)

wildzeke (191754) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207145)

"The Fifth Element"; on Blu-Ray. I know what system I'm getting.

My choice is simple (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15207151)

I'll buy/support the format that Sony doesn't have any influence over.

And as a side note... I believe it's just a matter of time until a manufacturer from a piracy happy nation releases a non-DRM HD DVD recorder/player.

The LAST WORD (2, Insightful)

cerebud (868302) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207172)

Two formats vying for a very small piece of the pie. HD-DVD is only worth it if you have a 50"+ screen, and most people out there just ain't got it. There will be no format war winners. They will both go the way of the laser disc.

Re:The (next to) LAST WORD (1)

cerebud (868302) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207194)

When I say,"HD-DVD is only worth it if you have a 50"+ screen", I mean that there's very little noticeable difference between HD-DVD and DVDs at smaller screen sizes. That was still the last word, I was just clarifying the next DA to come along and not understand what I meant.

Open architecture alternative (1)

atomclock (950729) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207179)

Why not an open source/architecture DRM Free alternative to both of them... That is the one I would buy.

One word... PS3 (1)

paco3791 (786431) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207189)

The format war will be won or lost based on the fortunes of Sonys next console, which will incorporate their Blu-ray tech. If the PS3 has anything like the market penetration that the PS2 has, then Blu-ray will be the winner.

Dont Hate.....Integrate (1)

TitsNbeer (958673) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207190)

I just created my own standard and nobody can use it except me. If you want to buy one of my drives you can only get it from me and It'll cost you $1,000,000,000.

I'm inclined to believe.. (1)

drunkennewfiemidget (712572) | more than 8 years ago | (#15207231)

That the format that is accepted and gets bought up is whatever Blockbuster and Walmart stock.

Inevitably the two arguing companies will fight tooth & nail to be the one to land an exclusivity agreement with Walmart, Blockbuster, and whatever other large retailers/renters are out there for media.

I think that, unfortunately, will decide the outcome of this battle.
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