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DVD FORMAT WARS END WITHOUT YOUR SAY SO…

Sony’s BLU-RAY has emerged the victor in the DVD format wars. What’s that you say? You, the consumer didn’t have any real say so?

That’s because sales were sluggish on both BLU-RAY and HD-DVD. Most consumers have already been through this before with video tape, and even if they haven’t, they’ve certainly been warned in one of the few times history will mean anything to today’s youth. Everyone was waiting for a victor to be declared and for prices to drop once it was over. Well, none of that was happening, so some politicing went on and suddenly things started falling into place. Within a few weeks, Warner Bros. decides it will exclusively back BLU-RAY, tipping the studio scale in their favor, followed by similar sentiments echoed by Blockbuster, Netflix and Wal-Mart. Shazam! Toshiba folds and its over.

Let’s see what this will really get us now. (Besides higher prices.) BLU-RAY discs can hold up to 50 gb. That’s great for data storage. For entertainment though, there had better be a whole lot more extras on the disc in addition to better picture quality and sound. The players are backwards compatible and theorhetically, your existing DVD library should look better on it. However, this won’t stop everything being reissued in this format so that you have to buy it yet again. (And we still didn’t have everything out on DVD yet.)

The other big question is when will someone find a hack for these machines so that you can play your other region content on it? (Both your existing and the, no doubt, forthcoming releases.) I’ll let you know once I come across it.

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2 Responses to “DVD FORMAT WARS END WITHOUT YOUR SAY SO…”

  1. Man, I was telling people to stock up on their blu-rays while they could last year! They were convinced that when blu-ray won, the prices would come down. I was like, “When has that ever happened?!”

    Last year, Frys.com had 5 pages of $19.99 blu-rays! Now they only have 5 movies for that price! Yeah, nothing will change… sheesh! So far I have 11 blu-ray movies. I want to share with you how much I paid for them brand new: Casino Royale – $14, Ratatoullie – $18, Spider-Man 3 – $14, Pirates of The Carribean: Curse of the Black Pearl – $18, The Sopranos, Sixth Season, Part II – $41, The Fifth Element Remastered – $9.99 (everyone should buy this one!), Final Fantasy – $9.99, Weeds, Season 1 – $19.99, Weeds, Season 2 – $25, 300 – $23, Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer – $15.

    I doubt if you can purchase any of the blu-ray movies above for that price any more! That’s like when I bought Gladiator: The Special 2-Disc DVD Edition when it first came out, it had literally 8 hours of extras (I watched and timed it!). This was the version that had the first DTS-ES 6.1 audio track which has not been duplicated with subsequent releases of Gladiator! It is an absolute collectors item and I protect it with my life! They had hours and hours of Discovery Channel features on the extra disc that I’ve never seen elsewhere.

    So the point is, if you wanted to eventually “buy in” to the high def format but were “waiting for prices to go down”, you missed it last year! You should have manned up and bought the cart before the horse! – the movies before the player (did I really have to explain that?). And this rant is for everyone, not just you, WTF Entertainment.

  2. I hear what you’re sayin’! Just to be clear, this is pretty much Sony’s revenge. They had the better format in Beta. (TV stations still use it to some extent.) They got screwed over the price.

    Here, Sony has a disc with tons of storage and great picture quality. As a format it’s a winner. I just want to see the studios take advantage of this and not just have an excuse to make me pay for the same movie I’ve already owned (let’s see VHS, Beta, Video Disc, Laserdisc, DVD) potentially 5 times now. Extras are great when well thought out and all BLU-RAYs should be loaded.

    On a seperate note, I think if you purchase one of the Sony players right now (look around to confirm offer and price point – but i believe it’s around $299) you will get a form to send away for 5 free BLU-RAY movies. Also, the prices look like they are coming down for the internal computer players.

    All in all, the potential here is exciting for film buffs. You should probably just choose your releases wisely.


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