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High-Def Format Wars - Battle of the Freebies

Zonk posted about 8 years ago | from the gotta-move-that-format dept.

212

An anonymous reader writes "It's come to this: eager to introduce the masses to the virtues of the next-gen DVD formats, the studios and manufacturers backing HD DVD and Blu-ray have begun giving discs away. It all started last month when Microsoft pacted with Universal to give away copies of 'King Kong' on HD DVD to consumers buying the XBox 360 HD DVD add on. Sony followed that up by offering a free 'Talladega Nights' Blu-ray with the first 500,000 PlayStation 3 units sold in the U.S.. Now today, HD DVD backer Toshiba has announced that it will give away *three* free HD DVD discs with every player sold for four months beginning on November 1st. With all these freebies, more people will likely have received free HD DVD/Blu-ray discs by the end of 2006 than will have actually paid for them."

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I'll just take the drive (1)

dattaway (3088) | about 8 years ago | (#16597656)

for the high power blue laser diode.

Talladega Nights for the win (-1, Flamebait)

Bryansix (761547) | about 8 years ago | (#16597664)

Since Talledega Nights is a much better movie then King Kong, I think we all know who will win.

In all seriousness though, I think both formats suck because of all of the DRM.

Re:Talladega Nights for the win (3, Funny)

interiot (50685) | about 8 years ago | (#16597702)

HD-DVD Jon will save us... maybe it will take a ten line perl program this time.

Re:Talladega Nights for the win (0, Offtopic)

Winckle (870180) | about 8 years ago | (#16597900)

Meh, with perl you could write it in one line, and half of that would be comments!

Re:Talladega Nights for the win (1)

JamesP (688957) | about 8 years ago | (#16598766)

Lines are overrated.

A C program will work the same if it is all in the same line...

Re:Talladega Nights for the win (2, Funny)

CastrTroy (595695) | about 8 years ago | (#16598096)

I won't be impressed until he does it in 10 lines of VB.

Re:Talladega Nights for the win (1)

certain death (947081) | about 8 years ago | (#16598514)

It takes 10 lines of VB just to declare that you are using VB!!

Re:Talladega Nights for the win (4, Funny)

Stripe7 (571267) | about 8 years ago | (#16597824)

I doubt if it makes too much of a difference to their bottom lines, they can either give those movies away or let them sit on store shelves unsold.

Re:Talladega Nights for the win (1)

ackthpt (218170) | about 8 years ago | (#16597850)

Since Talledega Nights is a much better movie then King Kong, I think we all know who will win.

Saw KK, bored me to death. Didn't see TN because racing films (even with comic actors) bore me to death.

In all seriousness though, I think both formats suck because of all of the DRM.

I think both formats have a LONG hill to climb considering how well entrenched DVDs are.

500,000 copies of a film? How many people honestly have a set they can watch something like that in all its glory on?

Re:Talladega Nights for the win (1)

GreyPoopon (411036) | about 8 years ago | (#16599376)

How many people honestly have a set they can watch something like that in all its glory on?
The 1080p sets have hit the market at a much lower price than their lower resolution siblings did. Just glancing at the typical retailer... a decent 42" plasma set is about $2000. A 42" LCD 1080p set is about $2700. I don't know about you, but the choice would be pretty easy for me. Expect all the HDTV holdouts (like me) to be picking up the higher resolution sets within the next year.

Re:Talladega Nights for the win (1)

Greyfox (87712) | about 8 years ago | (#16597896)

I was actually wondering if I could pay more and have them keep their DVDs. Ugh. Why not just throw a copy of Episode One and... oh I dunno... Maybe that last Star Trek movie that Shatner directed... what was that one again? The Undiscovered Country? Yeah... that'll sell some DVD players!

Re:Talladega Nights for the win (3, Funny)

Grishnakh (216268) | about 8 years ago | (#16598340)

Maybe that last Star Trek movie that Shatner directed... what was that one again? The Undiscovered Country? Yeah... that'll sell some DVD players!

Blasphemy!! How dare you confuse such a thing!!

Shatner did NOT direct The Undiscovered Country (ST VI), which was a great movie. He directed The Final Frontier (ST V), which was so horrifically bad that many ST fans consider it to not have happened.

Re:Talladega Nights for the win (1)

Greyfox (87712) | about 8 years ago | (#16598620)

I either didn't see the Final Frontier or if I did I took something afterwards to blot out all memory of it. I don't have good memories of The Undiscovered Country either, though. I remember something about the plot really pissing me off but I'd have to watch it again to remember what and I really don't want to do that. Hmm... Maybe if I got a free copy when I buy my HD-DVD player...

Aah and now the circle of Slashdot postings is complete and we are right back where we started, but one level up. Feel that? It's balance.

Re:Talladega Nights for the win (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | about 8 years ago | (#16598950)

Your mind probably automatically took defensive measures to block out your memories of ST:V, in order to preserve your sanity.

ST:VI is actually considered one of the better ST movies. It's not as great as The Wrath of Khan of course, but it's probably #3 according to most people, after The Voyage Home, or maybe #4 after the Borg one.

Comic Book Guy (1)

sadler121 (735320) | about 8 years ago | (#16598814)

Comic book guy is that you?

Re:Talladega Nights for the win (1)

Firehed (942385) | about 8 years ago | (#16598670)

If us silly Americans will *pay* for crap like that, what could possibly give you the idea that it being free isn't an incentive to buy something even more expensive? I know that the people with vaguely decent taste are the "pirates" (ie, the ones not going to theatres to see the shit they produce), but most people will happily lap up the load of crap produced and pay for it.

*THAN* motherfucker, THAN (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16598120)

The word is THAN, bitch, learn it!

Re:Talladega Nights for the win (3, Insightful)

Chris Burke (6130) | about 8 years ago | (#16598282)

I'm just wondering why they think Talladega Nights is a good showpiece for Blu-Ray technology. King Kong makes sense as the visuals are a big part of the movie. But a comedy? I'm not getting the logic.

Re:Talladega Nights for the win (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16598356)

Maybe they hope you'll be laughing so hard you won't realize how much money you just wasted?

Re:Talladega Nights for the win (2, Informative)

Spazntwich (208070) | about 8 years ago | (#16598776)

I'm guessing you didn't see the movie.

It's got plenty of action/racing scenes that will show off the high resolution, framerate, and 7.1 sound capabilities. It doesn't have loads of CG eye-candy special effects, but what are there will probably make for a damn good display of the capabilities of the format.

Wow! (1)

ackthpt (218170) | about 8 years ago | (#16597670)

These movies will look great on my 12 B/W set!

where do connect these players to a 1970's tv?

Re:Wow! (1)

multipartmixed (163409) | about 8 years ago | (#16598062)

You need to buy an RF modulator, and a 75-to-300-ohm matching transformer.

HTH.

Re:Wow! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16598874)

I was just about to say that. Glad somebody still remembers the days of the NES, TRS-80 CoCo2, and several other fun toys we had "back in the day".

~R. Larson

I GOT A GREASED YODA DOLL SHOVED UP MY ASS!!!!!!1 (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16597676)

go loonix!!

yes (1)

zulater (635326) | about 8 years ago | (#16597708)

for the price of these new systems they will have paid for the free discs many times over.

Re:yes (1)

Warlock7 (531656) | about 8 years ago | (#16597920)

The systems are all losing money...

The first one's always free. (1)

Kadin2048 (468275) | about 8 years ago | (#16598854)

It's called a "loss leader." You give something away in order to get people to spend more money on something else.

If you're unfamiliar, walk down to the corner and talk to your friendly local crack rock dealer, he can fill you in on the basics.

Whoever can get the most consumers 'hooked' on their format stands to make a whole lot of money...

uh oh, I smell trouble (1)

Wizzerd911 (1003980) | about 8 years ago | (#16597724)

Microsoft pacted with Universal to give away copies of 'King Kong' on HD DVD to consumers buying the XBox 360 HD DVD add on.
uh oh, the terrorism police are going to be all over them for packaging a bomb with the add on ;)

Free Movies (4, Informative)

Ucklak (755284) | about 8 years ago | (#16597736)

I remember when I paid $199 for my Toshiba DVD player way back when, there was a free movie signup as well.
Lost in Space, Stargate, and Six Days Seven Nights were included.

Re:Free Movies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16598204)

I still have those movies. Stargate you have to flip halfway through. Wow.

Re:Free Movies (1)

Iphtashu Fitz (263795) | about 8 years ago | (#16598632)

I got the same bundle, plus I think one more DVD with Julia Roberts. Forget which one though.

I think two of the four are still in their shrinkwrap 4+ years later.

Re:Free Movies (1)

antdude (79039) | about 8 years ago | (#16599108)

Same for notebooks if I remember correctly. My father got one an Toshiba Satellite Pro 2655XDVD back then and it had an offer for three DVD movies. Movies weren't big block busters though.

Jee-zus! (4, Funny)

rk (6314) | about 8 years ago | (#16597738)

First the rootkit, then the PS3, and now giving away "Talladega Nights"... why does Sony hate us so?

Yet reason to avoid the PS3! (1)

doublem (118724) | about 8 years ago | (#16598772)

What will they be giving away next? A remastered copy of Ishtar?

*shudder*

Re:Yet reason to avoid the PS3! (1)

Inner_Child (946194) | about 8 years ago | (#16599098)

What will they be giving away next? A remastered copy of Ishtar?
Isn't that the only movie still available on Betamax?

Oh the silliness of consumer marketing. (0, Troll)

Lethyos (408045) | about 8 years ago | (#16597760)

I wince when I see such nonsense because I know it will sell units.

“Freebies”, that cost a few dollars in manufacturing and material costs, are being used to promote players that actually cost under a hundred dollars, but are priced at hundreds (if not close to a thousand) dollars. (Everyone remember when your average DVD players were priced at $500 and higher? Now they can be bought for $25-50 a pop. Simple reasoning tells us the same applies here.)

All in the name of a senseless format war where neither side offers anything compelling over the other, where the end result will be a market full of players that read both.

This is outright stupid.

Re:Oh the silliness of consumer marketing. (5, Insightful)

Mikya (901578) | about 8 years ago | (#16598106)

Simple reasoning would tell us that you're an idiot. Just because the technology is similiar does not mean the units should have the same price. Further more I do remember when DVD players were 500 dollars a pop. It was nearly ten years ago when the technology was new. It's only now that they're 25 dollars. I wouldn't be suprised if in 2015 we're buying HD or BluRay drives for $50.

Re:Oh the silliness of consumer marketing. (1)

WageDomain (996331) | about 8 years ago | (#16598624)

Did you really just call him an idiot for his reasoning, then completely agree with his reasoning? His point was, I beileve that obviously these players do not really cost $1000 to produce, and are being marked up, and he used DVD players as an example. They also cost tons of money to start but are now being sold very cheaply. So what happened, are all these companies taking massive hits to sell DVD players? Doubtful, even taking into account the razer-blade model of marketing. So yes, over time the players will be cheaper, which would show that no, they don't really cost a grand. Also a lot of people saying how entrenched DVDs are seem to have forgotten the early 90s and the "struggle" DVDs had in getting off the ground, what with the heavily entrenched VHS to compete against.

Re:Oh the silliness of consumer marketing. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16599002)

Manufacturing costs drop with time, as improvements are made to the process and as competition for manufacturing the underlying parts drives prices lower. What your parent seemed to be saying was that DVD players were expensive to manufacture, and commanded a high price. With time, they became cheaper to manufacture, and the savings were passed on to consumers. (Of course, mark-up probably also dropped with time, but the major reason for the price drop was likely cost reduction further up in the chain, which needed to be passed on to consumers, or else some competitor would pass their savings along.)

Re:Oh the silliness of consumer marketing. (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16598224)

Simple reasoning? I guess this is the excuss you give when you have no facts to back what you say. When DVD players cost $500 there build cost was still much higher than $25-50 prices come down when volumes go up, also when the chinese start making knock off units which dont have to recover the R&D costs. Consumers all want new technology at build cost and then complain about outsourcing to india and that it broke after 3 movies. Forget your reasoning and learn some facts.

Re:Oh the silliness of consumer marketing. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16598384)

You should have stated that since the main difference is the laser frequency, the general concept should be the same. Now, granted, there's MPEG-4 compression, higher resolution signal, and more, but none are really "new" technology, nor even that much more expensive, other than the blue lasers.

For the writable part, there's some other issues, such as material research, but the basics are still the same.

Re:Oh the silliness of consumer marketing. (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about 8 years ago | (#16598588)

The processing power on these systems is/was pretty high when they are first introduced. I had a pretty spiffy new computer when DVDs were still new-ish, and it was unable to play them reliably without a MPEG2 decoder on the video card. Today, you need a pretty decent computer to do full HiDef H.264. The hardware cost for a HD-DVD player is probably pretty darn high right now, but it will obviously come down as custom chips enter the market and come down in price.

Re:Oh the silliness of consumer marketing. (1)

MrAnnoyanceToYou (654053) | about 8 years ago | (#16598400)

The funny thing is the question of, "Who pays for this?" I wouldn't think that it's much of a dent to either corporation, but it does mean less off-the-shelf copies of each movie will be bought. This means that a lot of the cost of distributing things for 'free' comes out of the pockets of the people basing their income on the royalties. So, by association, you shouldn't buy a PS3 for the free movie because you're helping terrorists and starving out stuntmen.

Hmm, out of luck... (-1, Troll)

AnswerIs42 (622520) | about 8 years ago | (#16597766)

No 360 so not getting a HD-DVD adapter...
Not getting a PS3 anytime soon as well...
I don't need an overpriced DVD player...

Guess I don't fit the HD marketing plan as I don't care about HD.

Re:Hmm, out of luck... (1)

InsaneProcessor (869563) | about 8 years ago | (#16598912)

Ditto. What does HD have to offer that is worth the price? While I don't go to theaters much, I do when I want to see the great HD content. That would be about twice a year. Gee, $600 VS $50. No contest here. Every other movie I watch looks great on my Wega with a standard DVD.

Nothing to see here. Move along.

Shovelware (5, Funny)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | about 8 years ago | (#16597774)

Reminds me of the time I bought a Pentium computer in the mid 1990s that came with a foot-high stack of CD-ROMs. It was a nice attempt at an intro to the possibilities of the new format, but there were only so many different versions of "Virtual Rock Gardening," "Compton's Interactive Encephalopathy," "Mavis Beacon Teachs Self-Neutering," and "The Adventures of Poorly-Rendered Cutscene Man" I could really get any use out of.

It'll be funny.. Like AOL cds (-1, Offtopic)

kabocox (199019) | about 8 years ago | (#16597798)

It's going to be funny when no one rushs out to buy either a HD DVD or BlueRay player and then return the freebie discs to the store that they purchased their product from and tell the store: "These "free DVDs" don't work I'm returning them for DVDs that work." When BestBuy folks try to explain that these HD-DVDs or BluRay free movies require the purchase of a very expensive player, consumers are going to either toss them mostly in the trash, toos them in a box just in case they ever buy one in the future, or just return the product and say that the store shouldn't carry DVDs that don't work in DVD players. Acting like a calm, dumb job average consumer will get best results from slashdotters. If you try to do this, don't even mention that you know what HD-DVD or BluRay is and that you know the formats don't work in a DVD player. Just state and repeat taht these DVDs don't work in standard DVD players and keep on requesting DVDs that work in a standard DVD player. The less you appear to know about electronics the better.

Re:It'll be funny.. Like AOL cds (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16597912)

You are stupid. Re-read that summary. You get the free disk WITH a player. Each off comes with a player of said format. God damn, slashdot people are getting dumb. How much did you pay someone for that sub 200,000 ID?

Re:It'll be funny.. Like AOL cds (2, Informative)

CastrTroy (595695) | about 8 years ago | (#16597960)

Well, since the discs come with the expensive players (XBox 360-HDDVD and PS3), there will be nobody returning the discs because they can't play them. Although there will probably be a few why try to play them in the old player. It won't really help persuade anyone who doesn't already have a player.

Re:It'll be funny.. Like AOL cds (1)

The Anarchist Avenge (1004563) | about 8 years ago | (#16597984)

I think you do not understand the strategy.
The freebie disks come *with* the purchase of a HD-DVD/BlueRay player. This isn't like the AOL cd bullshit at all.

Re:It'll be funny.. Like AOL cds (1)

businessnerd (1009815) | about 8 years ago | (#16598034)

This would be funny, but unfortunately you did not read the summary, just the title. They are not giving away movies randomly in your mailbox like an aol trial, they are giving them away WITH THE PLAYER. When you buy a blue-ray player or an HD-DVD player (consoles included) you will also get a free movie to get you started. This is the same concept as your computer coming with a bunch of demo software or a console coming with a free game.

P.S. Anyone else have a blue-ray banner at the top of your page? WEIRD!...or not

P.P.S. Anyone else experiencing weird login issues on /.?

Re:It'll be funny.. Like AOL cds (1)

Ajehals (947354) | about 8 years ago | (#16598930)

Offtopic -

Do appear to be some issues logging in, although the problem seems to be fairly short (2-4 minutes) and infrequent (for me anyway) I've seen it maybe 5 times in the last 3 days (503 System error is the response I am getting trying to get to the login page). Anyway you are not alone.

Ontopic

Since when does anyone read the article!?

But more to the point I wonder if giving away say 5 decent DVD's (Older Blockbusters may be a good place to start (Die hard / Top Gun / Terminator etc..) without needing to buy a player would boost uptake, after all 5 DVD's would be 'worth' £100 or so. I guess it depends on if the movie producers want this format (with all the DRM goodness they get from it, or whether its a push by the device manufacturers. After all no one is saying who is paying for these 'free' DVD's.

Of course giving them away free would probably just mean that a hell of a lot of HDDVD's would appear on ebay.

Re:It'll be funny.. Like AOL cds (1)

Control Group (105494) | about 8 years ago | (#16598360)

Since these are all being bundled with the matching player, I don't really see this plan working out so well.

Re:It'll be funny.. Like AOL cds (1)

stile99 (1004110) | about 8 years ago | (#16598862)

Acting like a calm, dumb job average consumer

Some apparently find this easier than others.
In fact, it would appear some need not act.

One question (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16597808)

Do the Blu-Ray discs come with a free rootkit?

Bring on the Freebies (3, Funny)

steve-o-yeah (984498) | about 8 years ago | (#16597812)

With all these free discs floating around, I'm reminded of the AOL days. AOL supplied a generation of bored youngsters with hours of microwaving, shattering and throwing AOL media. Someday kids will remember the "good old days" when Billy knocked out Timmy's tooth with a Blu-ray and when mom made them scrub out the microwave to get all the HD goo off the sides.

Re:Bring on the Freebies (1)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | about 8 years ago | (#16598330)

My friends and I used to hang out in subway stations and whip AOL CDs at passing express trains. While in retrospect that was dangerous and irresponsible behavior, I can't help but think it would have been just that much more gratifying if our missiles had Will Ferrell's face printed on them.

Thinking ahead (3, Funny)

Control Group (105494) | about 8 years ago | (#16597840)

Sony followed that up by offering a free 'Talladega Nights' Blu-ray with the first 500,000 PlayStation 3 units sold in the U.S..

Given their production rates, I expect that promotion to last through 2007... ...and here I thought corporations only focused on the short-term.

all the free movies in the world and... (1)

buckadude (926560) | about 8 years ago | (#16597842)

only time will tell which set of fanboys will be right. Me, I'll just sit back and wait this battle out. yepp~

What? (2, Insightful)

filtur (724994) | about 8 years ago | (#16597856)

So sony is shipping 400,000 ps3's but the first 500,000 get a movie when the next 100,000 show up next year? I'm getting a wii and I can use the left over money to purchase a dvd if I please :)

Re:What? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16598550)

Wow, you're an idiot. Sony will have 500,000 units at launch (400k in the U.S.; 100k in Japan). These are presumably the units with the freebies. And they will have more units available (1 to 2 million, maybe?) by the end of the year.

Don't want what they're giving away... (1)

Warlock7 (531656) | about 8 years ago | (#16597858)

Aside from a couple titles on the Toshiba list, there isn't one film being given away that I would waste my time watching.

Just like your first HIGH!!!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16597916)

Not to be trollful, but don't drug dealers usually let those who haven't tried drugs, try them for free the first time???? Not that I know any drug dealers or have, ugh, dealt drugs myself.

/end trolling

Is the public not going to see whats going on here? I'm mean really. Giving away free movies to get you to BUY their 'NEW HI-DEF VIDEO FORMAT'? The mere fact that the 'HI-DEF' isn't reason enough? Hmmm, nothing fishy going on here. Hey, while your at it, put this noose around your neck while you stand on this stool!!!!!!

DVD works for me. Besides. Hollywierd will maybe put out 1 movie a year worth buying anyways. Everything else worth buying has been out for years.

Now PORN on the other hand ..... (pun intended)

Re:Just like your first HIGH!!!!! (3, Interesting)

Grishnakh (216268) | about 8 years ago | (#16598436)

DVD works for me. Besides. Hollywierd will maybe put out 1 movie a year worth buying anyways. Everything else worth buying has been out for years.

Strangely enough, it seems that most of my TV/DVD-watching time is now spent watching TV show discs, instead of movies: Battlestar Galactica, Lost, Firefly, 4400, etc. There's a lot of great stuff coming out on TV while the latest movies aren't that great. We may even get to the point where TV shows just get released straight-to-DVD since TV execs are so incredibly stupid that they sometimes cancel the best shows (Firefly) in their first season.

Am I the only one who thinks Talledaga nights ... (2, Interesting)

kinglink (195330) | about 8 years ago | (#16597944)

Is a bad choice? It's not really an HD movie.. King Kong at least hard large screen appeal especially with the CG. But Talledaga night? Not to meantion Will Farrell.... I think they just chose a movie that no one would buy in HD normally, just to get an easy freebie.

Sony really needs to pick up the slack. The PS3 would have ended the format war easily, but Sony has completely screwed that pooch. Perhaps it's Sony's fate. they did get CD and DVD, but this is sounding more like Betamax. It's true it'll be better in the long run to adopt Blu-ray, but god if it's not starting out like a lame duck.

On the other hand HD-DVD isn't exactly shining either. Both format really needs to show why "you need this now". My parents have a 50 inch CRT, and still watch VHS on it, it gives a great picture (Better then broadcast tv), DVDs also look great, they have no need to go to a new format, to rebuy all the dvds and tapes on it. That simple fact makes me wonder if it's worth it. Hell they even got the extended editions of Lord of the rings on single DVDs. Perhaps it's just not necessary yet, and won't be until we go beyond 1080p. Of course if your so anal you must have the perfect resolution go ahead, but I'll stick with my DVDs for a while (Still don't like tapes, but that's me, my parents can't get their movies on DVDs still, and for some don't feel the need.)

Re:Am I the only one who thinks Talledaga nights . (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16598234)

VHS is not better quality than broadcast, unless you have a bad signal.

It's a simple question of bandwidth, broadcast analog TV has more of it, and digital TV uses it better - unless you're complaining about digital compression artefacts (which are on DVD too to some extent).

Re:Am I the only one who thinks Talledaga nights . (1)

kinglink (195330) | about 8 years ago | (#16598946)

I probably should modify that.

VHS LOOKS better then old tv shows and some normal broadcast tv over cable.

This is more like trying to watch a 90s sitcom on a non-hd channel.

I am almost afraid to try Nick At Nite, or TV land just because I've seen what 10 years has given us.

Re:Am I the only one who thinks Talledaga nights . (1)

TranscendentalAnarch (1005937) | about 8 years ago | (#16598250)

1)Buy Blu-ray burner [newegg.com] 2)Download some Blu-ray movies 3)??? 4)Profit!

Talledaga nights is their only choice. (1)

CyberLord Seven (525173) | about 8 years ago | (#16598310)

In this Washington Post [washingtonpost.com] article [washingtonpost.com] on Sony Corps. 94% profit plunge they mention that Talledega Nights was only marginally profitable, but was also one of their few successes.

Given that the article states that Sony Corps. profit has fallen so dramatically I'm surprised that they can give away anything.

Re:Talledaga nights is their only choice. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16598596)

[Talledaga nights is their only choice.
(Score:2)
by CyberLord Seven (525173) on Thursday October 26, @03:03PM (#16598310)

In this Washington Post article on Sony Corps. 94% profit plunge they mention that Talledega Nights was only marginally profitable, but was also one of their few successes.

Given that the article states that Sony Corps. profit has fallen so dramatically I'm surprised that they can give away anything.]


Why do you hate Sony so much, Zonk?!

Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm off to email the Washington Post and ask them why hired a Sony-hater like Zonk.

Giveaway (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16597962)

So lets give away the razors and the blades!

Re:Giveaway (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | about 8 years ago | (#16598258)

No, the razors are costing a fortune right now. They're trying to give you a free blade or two so you'll go buy the razor. Of course, given the offerings, it's a bit more like passing out rusty, nicked blades - 'cause only the true masochists are going to really enjoy watching either of these films, much less in HD.

Forever (0, Troll)

ant-1 (120272) | about 8 years ago | (#16597986)

Sony followed that up by offering a free 'Talladega Nights' Blu-ray with the first 500,000 PlayStation 3 units sold in the U.S.
They're gonna stock them up until the end of 2008 ?

Now if they were *good* movies... (1)

vanyel (28049) | about 8 years ago | (#16598002)

...then when a dual media player comes out, I'll happily take all the freebies they want to give away... I refuse to buy hardware that's limited to one or the other though.

That's great ... (4, Insightful)

Hobart (32767) | about 8 years ago | (#16598032)

...but I'm more likely to be swayed by the first company to offer me a break on a display that can even view this high-def content ...

As far as I can tell in a cursory glance over the net, the cheapest "TV-sized" display that will do 1080P with HDMI is the Westinghouse for $1100 shipped [pricegrabber.com] , and the cheapest panel is $800 for some 24" display [newegg.com] ...

That means I'm spending around $1500 for this "experience" they're peddling, all told. Sell me the display for $400 and we can talk. :-)

--
Slashcode bug # 497457 - unfixed since December 2001 - Go look it up [sourceforge.net] !

Re:That's great ... (1)

Com2Kid (142006) | about 8 years ago | (#16598264)

Hey that isn't a bad price for that TV there....

Re:That's great ... (1)

multipartmixed (163409) | about 8 years ago | (#16598272)

Wow, you think YOUR slashcode bug is annoying.. How would you feel if your user page URL didn't parse?

Re:That's great ... (1)

winnabago (949419) | about 8 years ago | (#16598878)

It's not our fault you used white text for all your user info.

Re:That's great ... (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | about 8 years ago | (#16598462)

I seem to remember that the sound system made more of a difference in experience than the picture size (and, presumably the resolution) of the picture. So spend a few hundred on a decend amp with surround speakers (nothing fancy really required), and keep your DVD player.

BTW - I picked up an open box 51" Hitachi HD set (1080i/720p) for $800 a year and a half ago. DVDs (and, for that matter 320p DiVXs) look good. HD is crystal clear - really fantastic, actually. I'd give up the HD for a full set of M&K speakers, though.

Re:That's great ... (1)

Zontar_Thing_From_Ve (949321) | about 8 years ago | (#16599042)

and the cheapest panel is $800 for some 24" display I followed the link to newegg for this panel and it has a response time of 16ms. Anything above 8ms is generally considered inferior for watching TV or movies - the screen won't update fast enough. The Westinghouse does have an 8ms response time.

Free movies good, but stealing movies bad? (0)

192939495969798999 (58312) | about 8 years ago | (#16598114)

These people are creating their own illegal market for movies by distribtuing free products. It's really not sensible for them to both distribute free copies of movies, and say that for regular people, distributing free copies of movies is bad.

Free logic good, but conclusions bad? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16598300)

"These people are creating their own illegal market for movies by distribtuing free products. It's really not sensible for them to both distribute free copies of movies, and say that for regular people, distributing free copies of movies is bad."

Before I blast your post to little bits. Why don't you explain the logic you used to arrive at your conclusion, keeping in mind we're talking about the copyright holder here.

How high-def do we need? (3, Insightful)

multipartmixed (163409) | about 8 years ago | (#16598214)

I still watch TV on 27" JVC TV I purchased in 1995. I think it looks great. The picture was awesome the day I bought it, and the picture is still great today.

I watch TV on Bell ExpressVu (Canadian Dish Network), rent the odd DVD, and watch the occasional torrent movie or TV show I missed.

You know what? I think it looks great. Of course, I sit six or eight feet back from the TV.

I am really missing anything? The new TVs in the stores look fine, but every time I visit a friend who has an enormous screen, I can't help but think "Man, those guys look all blocky and stretched" when Hockey Night in Canada is on.

I mean, WTF?

Re:How high-def do we need? (3, Informative)

Control Group (105494) | about 8 years ago | (#16598414)

I can't help but think "Man, those guys look all blocky and stretched" when Hockey Night in Canada is on.

That's the magic of HD. SD sports on a big screen (like my 50") are blocky and stretched. Sports in HD on a 50" screen, though, make me wonder how I ever watched sports in SD. The aspect ratio alone, which allows you to see more of the field at once, is worth the price of admission.

For me, at least, the leap from SD to HD when watching sports is literally equivalent to the leap from VHS in EP to progressive scan DVD. It's just plain better.

Big plasma and lcd screens are crap (1)

Colin Smith (2679) | about 8 years ago | (#16598456)

I had a look at some large "HD ready" plasma and LCD screens the other day. The picture quality is shite . I mean really really bad. You can see pixelation, step changes in what should be smooth colour and jagged pictures during high speed sports events. I wouldn't touch any of them with a barge pole and anyone who has bought one is a muppet.

 

Re:Big plasma and lcd screens are crap (4, Insightful)

dogbowl (75870) | about 8 years ago | (#16598608)

If you play an 8-track on the nicest stereo system in the world, its still going to sound like "shite"

Are high-def and Vista cut from the same cloth? (1)

OnTheWay (529387) | about 8 years ago | (#16598660)

I agree with you. I'm quite happy with my 24" flat screen TV and non-progressive scan DVD player. By the same token, XP works great for my needs. Why should I spend lots of $$$ for an HD TV set, or for Vista hardware and OS, for just incremental gains? The change from VCR to DVD and from Win98 to XP was an order-of-magnitude change and well worth it.

How many AOL discs were given away? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16598238)

[quote]With all these freebies, more people will likely have received free HD DVD/Blu-ray discs by the end of 2006 than will have actually paid for them[/quote]

I'm sure there is billion to one ratio of AOL discs to actual subscribers. At least I hope so... (and there are a lot of AOLuser subs out there)

>>the newer CDs make great coffee coasters.

Wow! (1)

east coast (590680) | about 8 years ago | (#16598242)

Talledaga Nights!?!?! I'm so there, d00d.

Like dumping (1)

QuantumFTL (197300) | about 8 years ago | (#16598520)

This is like dumping, but cheaper because the DVDs cost very little to produce, and no one's going to buy them unless they have the player anyways...

Did you mean ... (1)

djtachyon (975314) | about 8 years ago | (#16598696)

Battle of the Frisbees?

This just says... (1)

joerdie (816174) | about 8 years ago | (#16598782)

To me anyway, that the formats are not doing that well. I watched a movie in blu-ray on a HD 60ish in screen. (I dont know all of the specifics, sorry) The room had surround sound too but i didnt notice a huge difference. I really dont think that DVD to HD DVD/Blu-ray are as big a step as VHS to DVD. Like i said. I dont think either format has a chance and this is just the start of the formats begging ANYONE to buy.

What are they ... stupid? (1)

jo42 (227475) | about 8 years ago | (#16598838)

In order for us to watch HD DVD or Blu-ray discs I'd have to throw out and replace all of our entertainment system but the speakers. This ain't gonna frackin' happen - I'm not going spend five figures doing this. Until the industry groks this we bit of reality, they are going to bang their MBA educated noggins against a wall trying to sell something that people don't have to have.

pr0n (1)

TheWoozle (984500) | about 8 years ago | (#16598846)

Just like every video format before it, the eventual winner here will take off when there is a decent selection of porn to be had.

The way to instant market share (1)

Skapare (16644) | about 8 years ago | (#16598992)

The first one million units sold shall have DRM disabled.

I'll wait a little longer... (1)

CODiNE (27417) | about 8 years ago | (#16599036)

Til they start giving away the players free. Then I'll get one... maybe.

I already upgraded to the next generation HD (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 8 years ago | (#16599046)

Oh wait I didn't upgrade to what they consider HD, locked media, self policing hardware. I picked it up all last year even. The best part is it is compatible with nearly every media type ever inventeg. In other words I have my lovely 24" wide screen LCD computer monitor and nearly 1TB of harddrives for storage space. Add in DVD decrypter and DVD shrink (to strip out all the crap extras, menus, and stupid control locks (until you watch the anti-pirate commercial) and you have a wonderful media player. Ok fine it's not HD-DVD or Blue-Ray, but at least with mine I can do what I want with it. I won't be buying into either DRM format scheme. The discs and drives might be interesting once writeable storage versions come out, but other than forget it, not interested.

Free BetaMax tapes.... (1)

Beefslaya (832030) | about 8 years ago | (#16599232)

Free BetaMax tapes with purchase of BetaMax Player!!

I'm not biting.

Battlefield Earth for teh win (1)

MaWeiTao (908546) | about 8 years ago | (#16599244)

Once either one of them offers Battlefield Earth in HD, then we'll talk.
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