back to article People just not that into Blu-ray

Winning the next-gen DVD format war turns out to be a bit like getting crowned "most popular stench." Blu-Ray may have overwhelmed the competition, but that doesn't mean folks plan to invite it into their home. Although nearly half of Americans now own a high definition television, the overwhelming majority show little …

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  1. The Mighty Spang
    Thumb Down

    lots of factors

    disks are more expensive - as usual.

    a lot of older stuff like tv shows that people want to own wasnt shot in hd - why upgrade from dvd?

    for normal tv sizes at normal viewing distances advantages are marginal, esp for 1080

    personally: every player i've touched is a crock. 30 seconds or so to start, no indication of whats going on.

    personally: most films are crap now, only intersting ones are indys or weird foreign films.. no real reason for blu-ray.

  2. Efros
    Paris Hilton

    Meh

    bout sums it up, give me another higher definition format so that I can rebuy all of my Bluray/DVD/Videodisc/VHS/Betamax/V2000 titles at 3x the cost.

    Paris cos she knows when she's been rogered... repeatedly!

  3. Gary F
    Unhappy

    Not surprised

    Blu-Ray discs are priced at a premium which doesn't help. We have SkyHD which is more convenient to use than messing around with discs. I don't like the way discs take ages to start playing, from inserting to playing takes too long and as with all commercial discs the stupid logos and promos at the beginning that can't be skipped are infuriating. Total time from inserting to watching what you paid to see can easily be over a minute.

  4. Ian Ferguson

    Or...

    "Consumers today can easily watch high definition TV channels or use the internet or video-on demand to access high definition movies"

    Does it ever enter the minds of these people that people actually don't give a shit about hi-def? Most people have bought a TV because it's new, shiny and big; and then watch standard-def TV on them.

    Likewise, I bet there's more people watching shitty hand-held camera pirated copies of films than hi-res Blu-Ray copies.

  5. Version 1.0 Silver badge

    Surprised?

    Whores aren't always welcome at the dinner table.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Big surprise.

    Between the abysmally slow startup times, the DRM/,you-need-the-latest-firmware upgrade merry go-round, the lack of control (all I want is for the stupid machine to play the $#*&#&! movie), no wonder there's not much enthusiasm. For those of us early adopters there simply wasn't much to recommend.

    Get a good upscaling DVD player and you have 90% of what BD offers for 30% of the price, and none of the grief. I just don't see how they could have made the BD experience much worse. Oh wait - BD Live - they're still trying.

  7. Robert Heffernan
    Pirate

    It's all price-point

    So I have a Blu-Ray player in my Media PC but im not exactly running out to buy Blu-Ray discs en-masse due to the fact that they are charging a premium for the content. I am perfectly happy with the quality of my DVD collection on my 40" Full HD TV especially with the low price you can buy DVDs for these days.

    I often wait for sales at the local K-Mart or Big W stores to pick up movies for AU$5 to AU$15 where as the Blu-Ray discs are around the AU$40 to AU$80 mark. If they slashed the price for HD content they would find the uptake of players increase.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Flame

    I Quote....

    "Consumers today can easily watch high definition TV channels or use the internet or video-on demand to access high definition movies"

    Maybe were just sick to death of watching the same shite movies in any def....

  9. Chris Curtis
    Paris Hilton

    Not surprising

    Does this come down to the fact that yes, when you look closely you can see that Blu-ray is clearer, but in actual fact an upscaled DVD is more than enough for your average person?

    For sure, a good surround sound system and a nice TV are worth getting. but the difference between a DVD or Blu-ray just ain't there.

    Personally I'd still rather go to the movies and watch DVDs on poor nights. When I walk into the movie theatre the clarity of the picture isn't at the front of my mind.

    Paris. Ahh Paris. Would her videos be any better on Blu-ray?

  10. Mark 65

    Alternate viewpoint

    <quote>

    According to Harris senior consultant Milton Ellis, folks would rather forsake the disc format altogether in favor of alternative media.

    "Consumers today can easily watch high definition TV channels or use the internet or video-on demand to access high definition movies," Ellis said. "In the near future, access to high definition movies may be a download or streaming delivery of one's favorite movies to a home media server that eliminates the need for a Blu-ray player or Blu-Ray disc."

    </quote>

    Alternatively, given America is in a recession and has been for more than a year with job losses running circa 600,000 per month and house repossessions rising all the time, perhaps people have rated food on the table etc a touch higher than more definition and bolder colours on a bloody movie.

    Just perhaps.

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Meh ftw!

    Not that I'd quite Bill Gates often, but I recall that he said that, irrespective of who won the HD-DVD vs Blu-ray war, it would be the last physical format ever. I think all the people backing both formats assumed that, even if this were true, the winner would still have several glorious decades of revenue akin to the VHS to DVD transition. What if the last physical format ever ends on a whimper?

  12. Tom 35

    HD DVD numbers

    Are pushed up by the clearance price. At the end they were cheaper then a good DVD player. People might have bought a few $5 HD DVDdisks at the time but they were buying to get a high quality DVD player cheap.

  13. Martin Usher
    Thumb Up

    HD TV is every TV

    You can't buy a TV these days without it being a flat screen and all flat screen TVs are HDTVs. So the surge of sales of HDTV is really just people replacing older TVs with newer models (flat, better looking, lower power and receives digital off air without a converter -- the US went all digital last week, remember).

    BluRay's different, its an optional extra -- an expensive optional extra with few advantages to the consumer for the steep cost of entry, higher media costs and lack of flexibility. Only Disney seems to have cottoned on to the idea that you should ship a standard DVD with a BluRay -- currently if you buy a BluRay its useless anywhere other than the BluRay player.

    I quite liked the idea of HD-DVD because it promised backwards compatibility. I don't think either are particularly necessary -- we should be able to get an HD movie onto a DVD with MPEG-4 type compression (and yes, BluRay's compressed....you can see the artifacts on some movies).

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I have a Blu-ray

    via a PS3, but I've only watched 1 Blu-ray movie on it. To be honest having a single optical disk for each and every movie is a big pain (also I only watch the movie and ignore all the extras they put on the disc). And with kids at home, optical media is just not robust enough and ends up scratched and unusable in very short order.

    With 1TB+ hard disks now pretty cheap, it's easy to store your entire library on the hard disk and bypass the need to deal with optical media at all.

  15. geejayoh
    Thumb Up

    Looks like the rip off train is coming off the rails

    Of course people don't plan to change their disc collection. People were forced / coerced into moving their movie collections to DVD and now that's only just about finished.

    What they should see is the fact that the jump from VHS to DVD was HUGE. The benefits were tangible and made buying DVDs actually worth watching. No degradation of quality over time, instant rewind or play from a point and a smaller format. Life watching movies became so much more convenient. The only benefit I can see for Blu-ray is a miniscule jump in quality, a brand new TV set and hella expensive cables to play them through and some of the boxes so desperately worried I'm a pirate only playing through approved TVs and cable sets because I AM A PIRATE and I WILL EXPLOIT the analogue hole.

    Maybe it really has hit a point where people will not take being marketed a small improvement for a massive price hike. It's like when DVDs first came out, VHS were at £10 price point and had been for ages. The manufacturing price of DVDs is infinitely lower, and the profit margins for the distributors / publishers grows massively - but I'm still a pirate damaging their sales. Until DVDs come down to a £10 price point and blu-ray costs the same as DVDs now, then I sure as hell will not go anywhere near that Sony endorsed piece of crap.

  16. Flood
    Paris Hilton

    I'll be glad to be the first to comment.

    Lewis Page can take a break we won't need him to figure that one out.

    Price, demand, entertainment, storage.

    When content I want only comes in bluray I will shop bluray.

    When more and more files to burn have to span dvd discs I will consider the switchover.

    When more of our existing DVDs become unreadable: bluray time.

    When I see bluray burners at around 100$ and media around a dollar a pop, hip hip bluray! (had to slip that one in).

    However I wonder whether blueray and hddvd might be merely transitory standards especially given that the amount of extra storage they offer is relatively minimal IMHO, and that has struck me from day one. It feels to me like there is a chance that something else will come along and FUBAR those technologies right in the nuts.

    I think SD memory is doing great at the moment, albeit a couple years late; 32 GB postage stamp sized rewritable, multipurpose storage at less than 20$ US for those who buy their gear elsewhere than at Futureshop. I carry around two 4GB SD cards along with an SD card reader and in between my home DVD player, my 4 computers, my camera and PDA I don't need any other short term, even mid term storage as it is; and I use SD extensively at our help desk too.

    IT analysts argue that downloads are the future. I think my 15 year old keeps redownloading the same damn music video 50 gazillion times on youtube and that's because I'm not charging her for the bandwidth (yet). The bigger the download and the more items downloaded, the more incentive one has to keep and store their content.

    The NET is still plagued by a reliability problem. Flaky IP Telephony comes to mind, chuggy hulu clips and that email I just sent you a minute ago.... Did you get it yet? It usually only takes about a minute or two. How about now? Can you hear me now? How about now?

    We would like to download everything right now but we are not there yet and we are still going to need cheap storage - lots of it and way more than bluray currently offers - for the next foreseeable future.

    In the meantime Bluray is looking more and more like the Vista of media formats.

    Flood

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Happy

    Freeleech

    A lot of private torrent trackers are offering blu ray films as freeleech to "try to promote the format" -too much bloat IMO.

  18. Jim 40

    Content rules

    I posted here months back that consumers were disinterested in Blu Ray.

    Content rules and no amount of heavily applied make-up can overcome the dull turgid content HD formats are mostly associated with. Production costs become skewed away from the creative skills to the technical skills. These costs are then foisted on to the punters and so everyone is a loser.

    Dump HD. Bring back creativity.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Yawn

    Wake me when the DRM infestation's been eliminated.

  20. gollux
    Alert

    Least of my priorities at the moment...

    Sorry you won the format wars Sony, but keeping food on the table takes precedence at the at this time. Call back in a year or two.

  21. Greg J Preece

    It's still too feckin' expensive, that's why

    I like Blu-ray. I would like to make my future purchases in Blu-ray. Am I going to pay twenty five feckin' quid for each one? Get stuffed! So only the films I really care about are going to arrive on BD.

  22. PReDiToR
    Pirate

    Colour me surprised

    Make the HiDef DVDs the same price as the already overpriced StandardDef DVDs and you might have a market.

    Although, can you actually tell the difference when you're watching it on a screen that isn't as clear as a CRT even?

    Watching the telescreen isn't about wanting it to be as good as looking out the window, the content is supposed to be immersive by way of story and acting I thought.

    The way films are these days I'm surprised anyone bothers with DVD collections.

    Disney, Sony and others have crapped all over the DVD formats for years with DRM and now they can't shift the things.

    I own a PS3 but there is no way I'm shelling out for HiDef DVDs. I'm perfectly happy downloading films to see if they are any good (I usually go for the 6-800MB version) then if I like them, go to the pictures. If they aren't worth the £9,000 that a cinema ticket costs these days I'll consider a rental but mostly I just wait for them to turn up on the TV and get played ad nauseum.

  23. Throatwobbler Mangrove

    HD killed BluRay

    I believe that HD killed BluRay and this is partly why:

    "You can't buy a TV these days without it being a flat screen and all flat screen TVs are HDTVs. So the surge of sales of HDTV is really just people replacing older TVs with newer models"

    If you walk into any electronics retailers, pretty much everything is flatscreen and almost all is HD. Joe Public consumers have been baffled with bullshit about the difference between HD, flatscreen, digital transmission and many (most?) have been hustled into buying HD flatscreens when actually most of them would have had a better or just as good a picture on big old CRTs like they had before (and are probably replacing for fashion reasons).

    But when they get home and still get pretty much the same picture as they did before from their SD cable or Rabbit Ears, then it was all a bit underwhelming for them - it wasn't the mindblowing experience they'd been expecting for the extra $1000 (or whatever). And I think (believe) that people are more cynical about the difference between DVD and BluRay, thinking "you know what? DVDs look fine to me and last time I believed the hype and bought into something I didn't understand, I ended up with an overpriced TV and the same picture as ever, and BluRays at the video shop are more expensive, so bugger it, I'll stick with DVDs..."

  24. Tom Adair

    cost comparison

    People have seen how both DVD and HD DVD prices have fallen in recent years, and are waiting for BluRay to follow suit, especially considering there's a recession going on, and spending on luxury goods is always the first to be cut. Many people probably don't see any need (or are financially unwilling) to replace their DVD version of many films.

    Many BR discs are lacking on additional content compared to the DVDs even when released at the same time, and as seen from the DVD years, they will most likely get a later re-release with the extra additional content, so some people will be waiting for the re-release of their favourite films before they go for them on BR.

    Then there's the issue of around half of earlier BR releases being in the inferior MPEG2 codec, and being squeezed onto single layer BD25 discs, neither of which make the picture look much better than an upscaled DVD. Inferior transfers are also a problem, some releases have clearly been taken from a master that was originally made several years ago for a DVD release, and doesn't look as good as it really should do. These will presumably be fixed by re-releases with a big 'Remastered' logo on them, but again its holding off anyone (who reads a review on the picture quality at any rate) from buying those films.

    Also, several big name film series have yet to come to BR, such as Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, the original Indiana Jones films, and Alien, all of which will improve takeup as their fans want to see them in improved clarity.

  25. Clint Sharp

    Meh....

    Blu Ray, so what....

    Sure the picture quality might be technically very good but the majority of the content sucks ass and has done for *years*.

    I don't feel any 'need' to upgrade and if they stop producing standard definition media I'll just stop buying altogether because I really don't feel like paying the HD premium just to watch the same old pap trotted out over and over.

    Put me down as being in the 93% please.

  26. Happy Skeptic
    Unhappy

    It's obvious isn't it?

    * Minuscule benefits - DVD quality really is fine for most people

    * Excessive price - 25 quid per movie! What fantasy world do these people live in?

    * DRM - For the breathtakingly high price you have to deal with painful DRM incompatabilities and brokenness, why not just get the damn movie off Piratebay if you're going to be treated like a copyright infringer anyway?

    * Optical disks are fragile, slow to access and relatively bulky to store compared to hard drives and flash drives. Why can't I have digital copies of all my movies on my cheap, fast 300/500/1000/whatever GB hard drive(s)?

    * DRM also makes it really painful to make legitimate backup copies of the optical disks that will inevitably break

    * Physical disks are inconvenient to buy for each individual movie - why can't I just download them over the net? For all it's illegality The Piratebay et al. has shown us that it would be technically trivial for the movie companies to setup an excellent, no-bullshit video-on-demand service. They won't though purely for political reasons - they really do think they can bribe governments to make corrupt laws to coerce us all into continuing to buy media on overpriced physical formats.

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Great for storage

    Recently got a drive for the computer for storage. Not watched any movies (nor do I intend to) but 25 gb a disc was hard to resist when I spend my days video editing and needing to take copies of huge files that often won't fit on a dual layer DVD.

    Even a month ago discs were still 5 or 6 quid each but they've already dropped to about £3.50 and the speed that data is read from the disc is far faster than DVD.

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Bandwidth needed for HD?

    "Consumers today can easily watch high definition TV channels or use the internet or video-on demand to access high definition movies"

    Is this actually factually technically correct? What guaranteed bandwidth do you need for an HD stream? Not one that's been DivX compressed to hell and back, one that might actually be able to cope with action and colours and stuff.

    There are *lots* of people in the UK who can't get more than 4Mbit, and quite a few who'll never see more than 2Mbit. I don't see them streaming HD movies.

  29. Edwin
    Boffin

    What more to say?

    I own a blu-ray player.

    It takes the bloody thing ages to load a film

    It's region-crippled, which isn't nice when my kids grandparents bring them films from abroad

    -> it can't compete with my old Pioneer DVD player.

    I own no blu-ray disks.

    I rented the latest bond in blu-ray, and although the image quality is veeeeeeery impressive on my HD telly, I won't pay the premium to buy or rent blu-ray disks.

  30. Ben Bradley
    Jobs Horns

    Too expensive and DVD still works!

    People bought hi-definition TVs not because they're high-definition but because they're flat, take up less space, and an obvious status symbol than the huge box CRT machines. Also you spend way more time watching TV than you do watching films on DVD.

    The majority of people are just not that motivated by the "improved viewing quality" crap that gets forced into their faces by every Currys store.

    The improvement of DVD over VHS was huge... being able to buy a film that doesn't degrade over time (time-out?... damn DRM!). Blu-ray over DVD is just about higher resolution.

    At least if it was as cheap or cheaper then people would buy it, until that I'll stick with DVD thanks since it just works!

    BTW I can't remember the last time I bought a new DVD. I'm no pirate. It's just they're sooo cheap on ebay and amazon marketplace!

  31. Anonymous Coward
    Stop

    recession + + cost + availability of films

    It isn't rocket science. People aren't buying players because :

    a) We're in a recession

    b) Blu-ray discs are massively overpriced

    c) There are not enough quality films available in blu-ray.

    The majority of blu-ray releases are either crap films (which nobody will pay that sort of money for) or poor quality transfers.

    A lot are films which do not benefit from the increase in quality. There is no point transferring comedies to blu-ray. They don't get any funnier.

    Even when the film has stunning visuals, if the transfer is poor or the print you're scanning is poor, then you get a poor result.

    I like the format and it can be done properly. When you look at transfers like Blade Runner, Zulu or 2001: A Space Odyssey, you see how stunning it can look.

    Where are the Star Wars films? Alien? Lord Of The Rings? Where are the films which would look superb in high definition, such as Lawrence of Arabia or Finding Nemo?

    The films I'd like to see in the format are not available, or are only available in US/Canada region versions. If the studios start releasing the films we want, scanned to the quality we want, region free or available in all regions, they might just get us to part with a few more quatloos.

  32. Pavlovs well trained dog

    idiot factor

    BD movies insist I watch all the crap the studios/publishers/whatever shove on the front of every movie - so I have no control

    The movies are reworked rubbish - and I've fallen for that trick once all ready with VHS to DVD, so it's rip-off central

    And they're expensive - stupidly so.

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I watch loads of Blu Ray films...

    ...and appreciate the quality picture and sound.

    But I rent them all from Lovefilm as they are just too expensive to buy at the moment.

  34. Matt 21

    Not a useful survey

    This is only in the US, which is what almost half the size of the EU and even then not a very high number of people polled. It was an on-line poll which are notoriously poor at representing real opinion.

    So, perhaps the conclusion is right, but it would be more useful to look at Blu-ray sales figures.

  35. Fred Flintstone Gold badge

    Why I have Bluray..

    I was curious about the format, and I needed a games console for my son (that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it - I hardly ever play games myself). Buying a PS/3 was only a little bit more expensive than a player so it was an obvious choice - I don't think that's an accident as it could provide Sony with two different revenue streams at once.

    However, I hardly ever buy Bdisks unless they're discounted - the prices are IMHO stupid, and DVD is OK for me. And if not, buying and drinking more beer beforehand costs about the same but is more fun :-)

  36. Steve X

    No surprise there

    How many of those 47% of HDTV owners actually watch HDTV content?

    Indeed, how many are watching SD but think they're watching HD because the TV is an HDTV?

    Let's face it, little of the content today is of a dramatic quality where resolution matters. It's either so crap that HD just makes it HD crap, or (rarely) it's so good that the resolution is irrelevant. That's always ben the case, i.e. "Casablanca" is still a great film, even though it's in black&white. The 'colorized' version added nothing. Combine that with the truly rubbish quality of most LCD TVs compared to a good CRT and the whole HD business can be seen to be just a gimmick to persuade people to spend money.

    VHS tape only had ~200line resolution, but people still found it acceptable for watching most things, and even commented on how "good" the picture on their new VCR was. DVDs and CDs took over as much from the convenience aspect as from any perceived quality improvement, and it's no surprise that a minor incremental improvement over DVD generates as little interest as SACD did over CD.

  37. Thecowking
    Thumb Up

    £25 for a BD?

    I don't know where you guys are shopping but I've not paid anything close to that for any of my BDs yet, I think the most expensive one was £12.

    And yes, you can definitely tell the difference if you've got a 1080p screen with a decent screen size (40"+), You can really tell the difference, especially on productions which were shot with HD in mind, The Planet Earth series is probably the best ambassador for this and I picked it up for £20 (that's £4 per disc).

    Basically if you can't tell the difference between an SD DVD and a BD copy of a production shot in high def, you should visit your optician.

    I love my Blurays.

  38. LuMan
    Go

    ..Er.. Am I the only one...

    .... who seems to like watching Blu-Ray films??

    Me and the missus got a HD telly and watch loads of Blu-Ray rentals via our PS3. Personally, we're prepared to wait the oh-so-bl00dy-unacceptable minute or so the thing needs to start up (normally we use this time to open a can of beer or something) and, by using the actual media control, as opposed to the Dualshock controller, it's pretty much identical to watching a film via video or DVD.... oh yes, except the quality really is so much better.

    <Shrugs shoulders and goes off to watch Kung-Fu Panda again...>

  39. shane fitzgerald
    Thumb Down

    Wouldn't bother...

    ...If I rebought everything in Hi-Def i'd have to go out and buy glasses to appreciate the difference. It takes ages what with eye tests, frames to pick out, queuing to pay......

  40. Des
    Thumb Down

    Media Centre with DVD Library for me

    I can't be bothered with Blu Ray, up-scaled DVDs look great on my 46" HD LCD TV, Media Centre works (albeit slowly) and my 3.5TB RAID 5 NAS has more than enough space for my movie collection when trimmed of all the trailers and other junk they think we will pay extra for? Who actually watches the extras on DVD?

  41. Anonymous Coward
    Stop

    Waiting...

    Forgetting anything else for a second I love the fact that we've reached a day where people moan that 30 seconds to wait for a disk to spin up is way to long and is a deal breaker. Man, haven't we turned into an impatient world.

    Surprised those same folk don't switch off the tv every time an advert comes on as its WAAYYY to long to wait for the program to start again!!

    Maybe these are young whipper snappers who can't remember the days it took 10 minutes to load up a ZX Spectrum game, only for it to crash and you have to start the whole thing again...... those were the days.

  42. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    A format too far

    I am already binning all my DVDs, CDs, VCRs, etc - 1 £80 media player, 1 £90 1TB disk, no getting out of the chair to change the disks, no storage issues, no scratched disks, and absolutely no adverts or bullshit warnings about the proceeds from pirated tapes being used to fund terrorism.

    They can stick their crappy films, (there is very little of merit these days), and their drip fed formats right up their fat American behinds.

  43. Rick Byers
    Thumb Down

    Why Bother

    As has already been said there is no compelling reason to move from DVD, and no compelling reason to move to Blu Ray (or any other format at the moment).

    I own a Blu Ray player, and still only own a handful of titles on Blu Ray. OF those 1/2 are the freebies I got with the player. I have a large DVD collection, and it's good enough.

    The upscaling on the Blu Ray player is why I bought it, and that wipes out nearly all practical differences between the formats.

    Add to that the cost of Blu Ray titles, the poor choice of titles, speed of loading etc, then it's a bit of a pig in a poke.

    Slash media costs and you might get some movement on uptake, until then, it's a minority format.

  44. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Why the anti Bluray crowd shot themselves in the foot and why I say I told you so

    Bluray and the Bluray crowd have been responsible for the failure of Bluray.

    Bluray had far more DRM and was far more restrictive due to region encoding than HD-DVD that it was clear when studios backed it they only did so because it gave them greater strength over price fixing.

    But they supported it anyway, HD-DVD lost and here we are, Bluray players initially went up after HD-DVD died and the average film price increase. Players have dropped slightly but discs haven't.

    Bluray won the battles but lost the war because it was a war of a decent consumer friendly format vs. a locked down movie industry friendly format.

    But of course Bluray isn't the real loser here even though it's clearly failing. The real loser is the consumer stuck with an extortionately priced, problematic DRM laden, region locked setup as the only available option for physical high def.

  45. Aristotles slow and dimwitted horse Silver badge
    Stop

    Hmmm....

    So I can either...

    1. Pay SKY 30 odd pounds a month for HD, plus an extra fee for movies. Or...

    2. I can pay VIrgin the same amount for less HD channels... or,

    3. I can buy a BR player and fork out £15+ for a crappy movie, or

    4. I can pick up current DVDs in Tescos for £3 and watch them whenever I choose...

    It's a no brainer.

  46. Goatan

    Problem is not price

    The true problem is not price but the titles available. I own a PS3 and would happily upgrade to blue ray for most of my DVD collection. The main issue is that there is not alot of GOOD movies available in blu-ray. You mostly get really turdy movies such as ultraviolet.

    The best title so far has been Dark Knight, was filmed in IMAX and looks class in high def. I think its well worth upgrading. Anyone who says otherwise hasn't seen any good movies in high def.

  47. Bad Beaver

    Why bother?

    Blue-ray players, expensive. Blue-ray discs, freakin' expensive. Blue-ray selection, meh. Blue-ray DRM riddles, high, confusing, constantly changing.

    Videophiles with money love the quality and give toss about the rest, as usual. Normal consumers keep buying DVDs because they don't give a damn about Blue-ray. Cheapskates whose fathers educated them that C-Copy VHS are fine keep stealing low quality DVD-rips from the intertron, as usual.

  48. This post has been deleted by its author

  49. Phil 49

    Just to balance things out a little...

    There's still a massive amount of misunderstanding about HD amongst the non-techie (majority) public. It's amazing the amount of people who think they are now watching glorious HD simply because they bought an HD TV, despite having no HD sources to input.

    Which leads me to wonder, of the people polled how many said they own an HD DVD player whereas they just own an upscaling one? Also how many people answered no to getting a Blu-Ray player but may look to buy a PS3?

    Price wise discs aren't the problem, it's the players. Discs *are* more expensive, but we're only talking around £5 more than a DVD when you buy from any online retailer (e.g. Play.com). I'd say that's worth it for the quality jump over DVD. Although on the flip side I must say that upscaled DVDs (e.g. via a PS3) are astoundingly better than via a regular DVD player, and it's hard to argue that the quality leap between well-upscaled DVD and Blu Ray is that different

    Final note on players - I've not noticed load time issues being any different to DVD. Maybe the first commenter has had a bad run of it.

  50. Anonymous Coward
    Stop

    Question

    I don't have an HDTV, time to upgrade soon (when a Full HD set has the same brightness using the same amount of power - likely to be a LED lit LCD).

    BluRay ? I'll get a PS3 (cheap BluRay player with a good internet browser). However, will I buy BluRay discs ? Not likely unless they are only say 20% more than DVDs. Alas, that is not the case; let's take a couple of examples from play.com:

    Casino Royale (released a couple of years ago):

    Single Disc DVD: £2.99

    Single Disc BluRay: £12.99

    That's 334% more for the Blu Ray

    OK, a more recent example (less discounted) - Valkyrie:

    Single Disc DVD: £12.99

    Single Disc BluRay: £17.99

    That's a mere 38% more.

    In summary, if you must get a dics as soon as it's released, Blu Ray isn't that much more expensive (still more than my target of 20%). If you're sensible and wait a while, alas Blu Ray is a rip off. Most readers of this site are sensible.

  51. Si 1
    Gates Horns

    Hmmm, could that be because Blu Ray is too fucking expensive?

    All I ever hear from the PS3 owners I know is: "they're too expensive, I'd rather just buy the DVD".

    My first thought watching the MS conference at E3 this year was that their announcement of 1080p streaming HD movies has just killed Blu Ray. It will be interesting to see if it's successful.

  52. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    crap bluray catalogue/crap DRM

    It's all sick DRM crap. I have a bluray burner in my pc but I can't watch bluray films because my monitor is not HDCP compliant. It's ridiculous. The other thing is that a crap Hollywood film is still rubbish at high definition. Have you checked what's on bluray at the moment? 99.99% of the Hollywood production is not worth watching at any definition...

  53. Apocalypse Later

    Patience

    All things come to he who waits. Not enough free movies for you on broadcast TV? Sure they are mostly terrible, but they were like that when people paid cinema prices to see them freshly minted. I haven't been to a cinema in over 20 years. There is more than enough to watch on freeview/freesat, and the latest movie will get there too. Why turn it into a re-run by paying through the nose to watch it ahead of time?

  54. Sooty

    not many HD worthy films

    The majority of blu-rays released aren't taking advantage of the format. Pretty much anything more than a few years old doesn't have a high enough quality source to release without some serious restoration. Some are even just upscaled dvd prints as it's cheaper than re-mastering it.

    The market is seriously hampered by a lack of decent stuff available, that people a) don't already have on dvd, b) isn't a fraction of the price on dvd, or c) isn't worth getting in high def anyway.

    currently i'm still buying both, for each film i decide if it's worth getting it in HD, usually it's not so i get the dvd.

  55. Doug Glass
    Go

    It's The Cost Stupid!

    When prices drop to the level of quality DVD players, BR will catch on. And people having [large] collections of "wrong" format disks may have a bit to do with it.

    Blu-ray is a great solution to a non problem promoted by a company that treats people like roaches.

  56. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    I like Blu-ray

    Having watched the same film on a normal TV, DVD on HDTV, SKY HD & Blu-ray

    I can definitely state that on my system and for my eyesight there is a big difference.

    Even away from home I get an advantage from buying films on Blu-ray, my laptop can play them too.

    As for downloading films? I live in the country and its quicker to order a film from an online retailer than it is to download it at the same resolution. Takes me a whole day to download a SuSE DVD iso.

  57. Anonymous Coward
    Flame

    I watch blu-ray

    Via my PS3. Sure, the HD is good on my massive TV, the picture looks awesome! How many Blu-ray disks have I actually bought? - ZERO!

    Besides, most of the"filmed in 1080p" films only have certain scenes in 1080p with most of the film in 720p or whatever, Batman Forever was a good example of this.

    Also, why do they fill the disc up with crap, all I want to do is watch the film, I couldn't give a shit about concept art or some appallingly bad "game", Concept art???? I've just watched the fucking film! why would I want to see sketches that vaguely look a bit like the film content?

    And also, what's all this crap about "would you like the blu-ray disk to connect to the internet and download content?" - No, I fucking would not, fuck off!

    HD is gonna happen eventually, but they have screwed up blu-ray big time and it's waaaaay too expensive.

    It should simply be a format for playing films in the best way they can be played, that is all it needs to succeed. Greedy corps want to effect the way you behave by filling the format with unwanted pointless crap in a hope that they will make you consume more and that is where it fails.

    Is it time to bring on the next contender? I think so, but I wonder if software patents and over zealous corporations will hold HD just out of reach.

    One last thing,

    "In the near future, access to high definition movies may be a download or streaming delivery of one's favorite movies to a home media server that eliminates the need for a Blu-ray player or Blu-Ray disc."

    I'm sure the ISPs will love that. Everyone downloading HD movies all the time, fuck!

  58. Lex 2
    Stop

    Pricey

    I own a bluray player (in the form of a PS3). And I have bought a couple of bluray movies, but only a very small number, purely because (in my case) of the prices. You have DVD sales of good movies all the time, bringing prices down even as far as £5 (£2 if you want a particuarly old movie), where as very few blurays are ever less than £10-15. And I'm just not willing to replace the things I already own for that kind of cost. I'm even hesitant about getting new movies at that kind of cost.

    Sort out the prices and you might find people start buying. With things the way there are at the moment, people are a bit more frugal anyway, since money isnt abundant still.

  59. Paw Bokenfohr

    yeah but no but yeah but no but

    Yes, I have a BluRay player, and yes I have a number of BluRays, and yes, I can tell a great difference between them and the DVDs which I also have.

    But no, I am not going to be buying all the things I already have on DVD on BluRay again, and not even going to be buying most of my favorites (again) at least not until there is some significant price-droppage.

    The only BluRays I've bought are my absolute best movies; I'll get the Star Wars set when it arrives for example (I already have it on VHS twice; remember 4:3 VHS? - I do; and DVD twice; remember the films before the re-CGIing - I do!) but will happily buy them on BluRay because the quality of the picture is that much better and I love the films.

    But I'm not going to re-buy the hundreds of other DVDs I have like the Bond movies and the TV shows and the hundreds of other movies that I watch once every 3 or 5 years. Why on earth would I, at £25 a pop? Now, if they were £9.99, it might be different. TBH, I know BluRay is a good format - I can see it - but I don't see why a BRD should cost more than DVD - the physical media can't cost more to make, so why should it cost more to me? The content is the same after all, just higher definition, so it feels like a rip off to me, and I don't like that at all.

    I suspect that I am not uncommon.

  60. stevebuttonmoon
    Pirate

    Not a snowballs chance in hell

    I wouldn't touch BluRay or Sony with a barge pole

    DVD is bad enough, why should I be forced to wait to watch the film I've bought while they tell me not to be a pirate, I've already paid...

    Then there's the trailers and crappy menus

    And they wonder why piracy is such a problem...

    Corporate f*!ckwits the lot of them.

    S.

  61. Paul Hates Handles

    Not surprising

    Some of the players take a few minutes to get to a disc's menu. The only player really worth having is the PS3 - and nobody wants to pay £300 for a Blu-Ray player. It seems the inferior product won and now people are suprised at the lack of take-up :)

  62. David Paul Morgan
    Go

    Horses for courses

    Is it worth re-buying your existing collection? - no

    Downloading? if you can get it to work. I never have.

    V+ HD and Virgin 'catch-up' TV - brilliant.

    Quality via Panasonic 1080p /V+/PS3 - Brilliant.

    Blu-Ray rental from the movie stores - brilliant.

    Having to scroll through the crap when you just want to see the film - rubbish.

    Cinema - looking less good and still has scratches, unless you have a digital projection cinema nearby.

    Blu-Ray prices range from £5 to £25 - the prices will adjust as mass-production kicks in.

  63. Jerome 0

    Inflated due to online poll?

    Surely if anything the figures would be deflated by running an online poll, since everyone online is merrily downloading their content, as will world & dog be in a year or three.

  64. Dan 14

    Ownership

    Perhaps people are realising there might be no real reason to actually own a copy of a movie you may watch once every year or so at best. You can just stream/on-demand/download it whenever you want to watch it. Why clutter your shelves with boxes that never move when at least the most popular things are available 24/7 over some sort of network anyway. Are niche film sales taking a similar hit to the big titles?

  65. Phil Endecott

    Do they know what they have?

    Ask Joe Average whether his TV is "high definition" or not and he won't know. Similarly if his DVD player is "blue ray" or not. My guess is that the default answer to the first question is "yes", since the alternative "low definition" sounds bad, while the default answer to the second is "no", since "it's a grey box, not blue". A survey like this ought to have control questions like "is your DVD player Green Ray?" to weed out respondents who don't know.

  66. Andy Miller

    Better, but not sufficiently so

    Got a new laptop recently with a Blu-Ray (sic) player and HDMI, so we bought a disc to try it out on our HD telly. To me, the results are better than DVD, but then I spent nine years making TV broadcast equipment, so I know what to look for. However, if the film is sufficiently interesting you forget to look at the image quality. If the film isn't sufficiently interesting, I'll turn off the telly and do something more interesting instead.

    So, not worth the cost margin over DVD, unless image quality is prime concern.

  67. lupine
    Unhappy

    why oh

    why are the players so pricey??

  68. Geoff Campbell
    Thumb Up

    Early adopters rule

    It occurs to me that this is possibly the first time in history that the bulk of early adopters have got ahead of the curve.

    All of the early adopters I know are now moving to a media-free existence, as fast as is possible. One disk per film sucks dead rats when you can store 40 or so HD films on a £50 HDD, and home networks are generally fast enough to stream full HD content, if designed properly.

    Add to that media players that can be updated to cope with new file and encoding formats as they come along (yes, well, that would be nice, wouldn't it, Linksys? Anyone wanna buy a cheap KISS1600?), and the argument for physical media starts to look decidedly wobbly.

    Welcome to the 21st Century, boys and girls. I for one am loving it, although I still want to know where my flying car and jetpack are.

  69. Giles Jones Gold badge

    Player price

    Once the players drop sub £100 then it will become more popular.

  70. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Blu ray is great

    I love Blu-rays. Quality is stunning sound is great. PS3 starts them quickly and there is less unskippable rubbish before the film than most DVDs seem to have.

    Price - £2 per rental from LoveFilm. Over 1000 available now.

    When I can rent online 50GB (OK, 25GB when excluding extras) movie files as efficiently and cheaply I might change my mind.

    Noticeable compression artefacts are rare with blu-rays apart from the very earliest which were poorly mastered and often only used MPEG2. Virtually all now use MPEG4 AVC.

  71. Dr. Whoosh
    Thumb Up

    Just bought one

    Last weekend, I finally gave in to the urge to buy a new flat screen. I did buy a Blu Ray player with it. The reason was that I would need the upscaling. I rent discs via LoveFilm so I not be buying that many discs and I will certainly not replace anything that I already have on DVD. I get a kick out of the HD images so it was not a difficult descision for me. So far I am well chuffed.

  72. Len Goddard

    No advantage

    DVD through a half-way decent upscaler is more or less indistinguishable from blu-ray for most material except possibly for the very latest stuff (comparisons done on my mates 60" screen using an expensive blu-ray player). Personally I have a 32" SD tv and no space or desire for anything bigger. Upgrading to HD would probably be almost indistinguishable at my normal viewing distance.

    Plus I have 600+ DVDs in a variety of regional encodings. If/when blu-ray players without region locking are as cheap as today's dvd players I might buy one. I assume by then I'll have an HDtv as my current box will have worn out. On the other hand, considering the quality of most of what is broadcast nowadays, I might simply dump the TV and stick to watching DVDs via a computer.

  73. Paul Simmonds 1

    It's all about the price point

    Currenty a resonable brand name DVD is £50 whereas a Blu-ray is £150, typically people will only pay 20% over the odds for better technology, so when we get blu-ray players to £60-70 then you will see it start to take off - simple as that.

  74. Ben Norris

    hella expensive cables

    Thanks to the miracles of digital as long as the signal gets there it will be perfect so those £80+ HDMI cables that the likes of Currys and Comet try to sell you are absolutely pointless. Do yourself a favour and get a £10 or cheaper one from your local supermarket and enjoy the exact same quality picture.

  75. Anonymous Coward
    Flame

    So it's decided then?

    Blu-Ray is a format that not many techies are impressed with? Many of them openly talking about its flaws, how it could be better, it's inflated price and how it is not really that good.

    The final seal has been broken, Blu-Ray is released. The masses will now suddenly start buying into the format and getting everything they can on Blu-Ray, the format will take off and finally be a huge success.

    In the distance will be the cries and whimpers of the techies...."but it's too expensive", "The DRM is too restrictive", "the format should be used differently", "you don't understand, they are deliberately making you pay more!"

    And the masses will pay more...

  76. Annihilator Silver badge
    Boffin

    Upscale vs remastering

    Unfortunately, it's now the case that you MUST read publications like Total Film etc to figure out how the rereleased content has been mastered, and whether it's worth the upgrade. Contrary to popular belief (@The Might Spang), a lot of stuff HAS been filmed in HD - if it was captured on ordinary film, there is a benefit to be gained. Do you think cinema projections are DVD quality? Or VHS pre-mid-nineties?

    If they create the bluray print from the 35mm (or 70mm) film master, then you'll end up with a "proper" HD copy. If they simply upscale the DVD print (lazy) then you're no better off, save for the more advanced techniques they use that your upscaling player just can't pull off in real-time. 70mm (even 35mm) has more than enough information to warrant HD resolutions. All depends on the optics of the film equipment of course.

  77. James Le Cuirot
    Linux

    Linux

    I'm waiting for better support in Linux. You can play them but it's a bloody hassle, even by my standards. The fact that we can play them at all is a good sign though.

  78. The Avangelist
    Flame

    It isn't the quality that is the issue

    The whole thing of 'hi definition' was a bit of a white lie to start with, it was a justification to improving the quality of lcd screens over CRT's.

    I have a PS3, I had it with a bog standard CRT for a good year. I finally decided I wanted to free up the 2ft by 5ft space my jumbo CRT took in the living room and bought a flat screen. Obviously I bought a HD Samsung. The only difference between playing GTA with and without a HD connection is that I can read the text clearer going through HDMI.

    Your eyes cannot tell the difference between a DVD and a Blu-Ray disc, anyone who says they can is lying to save face because they think they're stupid for not being able to tell the difference.

    My best friend has gone back to watching VHS and I don't blame him! He can watch a film or a tv show and stop it come back to it a few days later and pick up exactly where he left off! How many people can do that with their DVD's or Blu-Ray? Not many.

    The other big flaw is that they are utilising Blu-Ray space to fill with loads of extra 'content' rather than focusing on the cinematic release itself, this has always been the failing with DVD.

    I don't remember any of my VHS Tapes having behind the scenes dross, useless menus or 'extra deleted scenes'. They're deleted because they didn't belong in the movie, jog on!

  79. Citizen Kaned
    Thumb Down

    hmmm

    ""Consumers today can easily watch high definition TV channels or use the internet or video-on demand to access high definition movies," Ellis said. "In the near future, access to high definition movies may be a download or streaming delivery of one's favorite movies to a home media server that eliminates the need for a Blu-ray player or Blu-Ray disc."

    -- not in the UK, stream a 50+Gb movie in 90 mins? yeah right.

    only sky has a decent range of HD content. im on virgin and we can only get BBC HD.

    personally i buy the BR disk of movies i want to see at the cinema, as my sound system sounds much better than any cinema ive been to, and on a 42" TV my picture is a damn site more clear too...

    the problem is that many old dvds arent even proper DVD quality. its only new movies like transformers, ironman etc that really do HD justice. plus all the people with crappy 720p TVs.

    remember though that DVD had the same problem initially, it was only when DVD prices went down that mass adoption came into affect

    "Oddly enough, although HD DVD is technically a dead format, it's apparently doing better than Blu-ray amongst those polled. About 11 per cent said they owned a HD DVD player, while 7 per cent said they own a Blu-ray player." odd, so more yanks have a HD-DVD player than a PS3? i doubt that.

    "When Blu-ray player or PS3 owners were asked if they plan on switching their disc library completely, only about 25 per cent answered yes" - only a RETARD would do this. as i say its only films from the last 10 years that are viable. films like aliens is on such poor video stock that dvd really didnt look that much better than VHS... just the sound was much better.

    i only buy BR if its a film i know i will want to watch a few times and i know HD will do it justice. my next BR purchase will be the watchmen.

    @"With 1TB+ hard disks now pretty cheap, it's easy to store your entire library on the hard disk and bypass the need to deal with optical media at all." - wont get many 50GB movies on a 1TB drive will you...

    @"i like Blu-ray. I would like to make my future purchases in Blu-ray. Am I going to pay twenty five feckin' quid for each one? Get stuffed! So only the films I really care about are going to arrive on BD." - 25 quid? i get mine for £15 from play. or £22/2.... stop shopping at ripoff HMV lol... dvds are all £16+ for decent new ones there...

    @"Blu-ray over DVD is just about higher resolution." - get new eyes or a decent TV. the difference on my 42" toshiba over dvd is massive. but then i find a lot of DVDs look a bit crap. maybe its my designer's eyes?

    @"I like the format and it can be done properly. When you look at transfers like Blade Runner, Zulu or 2001: A Space Odyssey, you see how stunning it can look." - bladerunner looks amazing :) also older films like fifth element look amazing too....

    @"BD movies insist I watch all the crap the studios/publishers/whatever shove on the front of every movie - so I have no control" - you mean like DVDs do? or do you watch too many copies to remember this?

    for any doubters please try something like the BBC Planet Earth series - simply remarkable.

  80. tiggertaebo
    Stop

    Better.. but not THAT much better

    My housemate and I are both very much into our movies and he has rather nice home setup (46" Sony HDTV with full 1080p and a full Linn surround setup) for which he has just picked up a Blu-Ray player to replace our previous upscaling DVD player (which was a VERY nice bit of kit and streets ahead of "normal" DVD players), I've watched a couple of Blu-Ray discs on it so far and a couple of regular DVDs so far I would say that although the quality improvements in BD are definately there I only tend to notice them if I am looking for them. I'f I'm immersed in the movie I might as well be watching the DVD. So far I'd say that the player does a nice job, slightly slow start up times but not something I'd throw the toys over.

    On the whole I'd say its not worth the premium for Blu-Ray discs - at nearly twice the price of the equivilant DVD I'd rather pick the film up on DVD and buy another cheap one. Particularly since having it on Blu-Ray narrows my view options, I can't watch in my room or take it with me and watch on the laptop etc.

    Oh and I'm dead against download-only for getting films. I LIKE the physical collection, I LIKE being able watch them wherever I want, I LIKE being able to take films to a friends place for a social evening etc.

  81. Ian Michael Gumby
    Paris Hilton

    I have to concur with the sentiment of a lot of posters....

    Blu Ray isn't dead.

    The players are still in flux and the cost of the disks are pretty expensive. Blue Ray 1.5, 2.0?

    What's the next big thing?

    My sister has a really nice high end projection tv in her finished basement. Note: Not the really high end but still up there and enough to make me jealous. She's using a PS3 as her blue ray player.

    Definitely a big difference from just picking up 1080p off the cable.

    While the disks are expensive, there are alternatives now. As 'fiber to the house' becomes available in more areas, sending blue ray quality images to the house in a 'video on demand' strategy is going to be a possibility. If you can't stand the idea of having 500 channels of junk, you could imagine 100 channels of not as much junk but at a higher quality and of course sports packages and 'content on demand' This is becoming a reality. So why should people upgrade their dvd collection and spend $$$ on disks that they may only watch once or twice?

    Only the true videophile will want one.

    (Unless you're talking about burning blue rays on you computer for ROM storage. ... ;-)

    I chose Paris because like my wife, most women could hardly care about the difference in image quality between reg def, 720p, 1080i, 1080p.

  82. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    DRM is the killer

    I borrowed a BD player with several legit BDs and a few ripped BDs.

    The legit BDs were all very slow to start (and on kept crashing the machine, meaning I had several 5 minute pauses in the film.)

    The ripped BDs all played perfectly, started as quickly as a DVD, and also some would play on Geexbox or VLC on a PC with a BDROM drive.

    The player was great, but to be honest, I would not buy (m)any BDs with this artificial crippling, ripped disks are far better, but I don't want a collection of pirate disks. So for me the format is a fail.

    It is also quite possible to fit HD videos onto standard DVD media. (There is a BD compatible format called BD9)

    What is the betting that future upscaling DVD players will also support HD on DVDROM (and if they supported BD-9, then suitable disks would also play on BD players, give it a couple of years and we might find them amongst the £1 disks in markets)

  83. Matthew 17

    Where are folk shopping to get these prices?

    I have 2 BD players (1 is a PS3). The quality on a large flat screen or projector is great.

    You can get a great player for under £200 so they're really not expensive, at this stage in the life of CD or DVD they were over twice that. Media isn't that more expensive either.

    The biggest problem I see is that the available software is poor, the selection in shops is also very poor. When you go into your local electrical retailers they almost always have SD TV multiplexed to 100 screens and the picture looks hopeless.

    In addition when DVD came out most of the films released were just ported from VHS and had poor video and sound without any extras, you had to wait for the eventual 'Special Edition', this is also true of BD whereby most of the films coming out unless they're a new film are just upscaled ports from the DVD and again without any extras.

    Physical media will still be around for at least a decade as the Internet just isn't up to the task and won't be for a long time. Waiting for a film to download before you can start watching is is hopeless, it's like loading a game off a cassette for your 8-Bit home computer!

  84. goggyturk
    Thumb Up

    It's actually quite good

    I like it. Having watched a couple of Blu ray flicks on our rather modest 32" LCD TV, I would say the quality is noticeably better - even the missus can see the difference, and she's a total luddite. We may even upgrade to a bigger telly to get the full effect.

    Older DVDs upscale quite nicely too - although that may be a double edged sword in this case.

    As this survey covers the US, this may be skewing things somewhat. In this country, Blu ray disks aren't so much more expensive than DVDs and most people will be willing to pay (say) £5 more for better quality I would say.

    My gut feeling is that it will be a success - each 'must have' release that comes out will drive adoption a little more. But hey, what do I know?

  85. Enrico Vanni
    Stop

    No competition!

    The biggest problem for increased bluray takeup is the amount of HD content that is being produced that simply won't appear on BD unless Sony loosen their monopoly grip (in terms of both high cost and restricted availability) on the mastering facilities, and that isn't going to happen in the foreseeable future with no competition to drive prices down.

    The BBC, for example, are producing childrens' programs (In the Night Garden) and Top Gear in HD and shows like those are big and consistent sellers in the DVD market (without all the hype and marketing required to shift you typically disposable Hollywood blockbusters), but the HD versions will stay in the archives if the BBC and others feel they are being gouged just to join the big blue bandwagon.

  86. Dale Richards
    Thumb Down

    DRM

    Like a lot of people, Blu-ray's DRM scares me. At the moment, I can buy a DVD safe in the knowledge that I can play it forever. Even if DVD players go the way of VHS, I can copy the films onto my PC and transcode them into whatever format I want.

    With Blu-ray's DRM, things are too uncertain. I have to spend a fortune on equipment and discs to get films that I might not even be able to watch in 10 years' time!

    Until Blu-ray's DRM has been cracked as comprehensively as DVD's, I'll be staying well away.

  87. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Not what it's cracked up to be.

    I bought a Sony Blu-Ray player last week, it takes on average about a minute before the movie even starts playing, and is unweildy. Picture quality is questionable at best. Sure higher res, but you can sure spot the artifacts aswell!

    The picture was so full of noise and artifacts that I simply couldn't bear to watch it, in the end I returned the unit. So much for my forray into Blu Ray, a complete thumbs down.

  88. The BigYin

    My 2p

    1) I have yet to see any HD/BluRay movie show a better picture quality than my current, standard TV.

    2) Sound is way, WAY more important than picture

    3) Too bloody expensive (players and discs)

    4) Too much DRM

    5) Why waste money on BluRay when 3D is 'round the corner?

    I'll probably buy an HD telly once my current one dies, but only because that'll be what I can get; not because HD is any better.

  89. Toastan Buttar

    Law of diminishing returns

    Anyone can see that Blu-Ray looks crisper than DVD. The question is - how much does that increase in visual quality improve the experience of watching a movie ? After 5 minutes of a good film, you're involved with the plot and the characters and you ignore the minor details . I'm on the edge of my seat any time I watch 'Apollo 13', regardless of the medium (I currently only have it on VHS and don't feel the need to change any time soon).

  90. Mark Greenwood

    HD is better?

    "Indeed, how many are watching SD but think they're watching HD because the TV is an HDTV?"

    According to quick, unscientific, straw poll in my office, about 75% of them.

    I had HDTV via Freesat for a day, as I got free installation with my HD TV (which I bought because my old one broke). After an hour or two I realised that being able to see the individual hairs on Bruce Forsyth's chin was not an improvement and certainly didn't merit having a carbuncle mounted on my garage. I took it down again.

    The popularity of YouTube and downloads should have made it abundantly clear that the vast majority of the world give not one hoot for picture quality. What they want is stuff that's convenient and cheap. Blu-Ray is neither of these things. Even those people (myself included) who do regard it as important don't generally find HD pictures worth the effort.

  91. Anonymous Coward
    Stop

    re: Not what it's cracked up to be.

    Should have bought a proper Blu-Ray player then. PS3 boots about 10x quicker than standalones and usually looks better too.

    As for this article, it's instant fail, as Blu-Ray sales prove that it's selling just fine...

    I wonder where they did their poll, outside Microsoft's E3 booth?

  92. P. Lee Silver badge
    Coat

    it isn't just the pricing

    lots of channels, lots of repeats, dvr, why bother buying anything?

    Mines the 14" one with a single speaker. If the plot and dialogue are rubbish, there's no point making it bigger.

  93. Mark 9
    Flame

    re: DRM

    Has the whole world turned into thieving pikeys?

    What's with the stealing content and cracking stuff these days? Is it now some kind of right you have?

    people like Dale Richards are purely to blame for the lack of quality programming, movies and music, as studios fail to invest due to rampant levels of piracy.

  94. jason 7
    Unhappy

    Its the studios fault.

    I have to ask myself (well not really but bare with me here) do I really need the latest Ben Stiller/Vince Vaughan/Jack Black/Judd Apatow/Jennifer Aniston/Vin Diesel/Will Ferrell/insert any mediocre hollywood name here movie/remake in HD to enjoy it?

    Not really.

    Only 25% of the current Hollywood output even vaguely deserves the HD treatment. Otherwise £3 from HMV or £1 from the library of good ol' DVD will do thanks.

    I cant think of too many movies made in the past 7-8 years that I'd really really need to have in HD right now. I can wait for LOTR etc. it's a vintage.

    Had the studios gone back and released all their classic movies on HD first then we might have been tempted. Oh plus at say a maximum starting/release price of £15 rather than nearly twice that.

    However, early releases on a new format always suffer from lack of mastering experience or corner cutting. Remember the original DVD release of Bladerunner? You have to watch out.

    The other aspect is how many times to you watch that disk? Most of mine have only been watched once. Hence why I borrow more from the library. I'm not so bothered about having the physical media gathering dust anymore.

  95. John70

    Disc

    Isnt it time we moved into solid state media than using things that spin around?

  96. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @ Mark 9

    Perhaps it was when big business started treating its **legitimate** customers like they were thieves with DRM? Punishing the people who were willing to pay for your content by putting absurd restrictions on what they can do with it when the pirates don't suffer any of them is not the way to make those people continue paying for your content. I would willingly pay for content if I wasn't being treated like an effing criminal for doing so. End result = I don't buy any content and I no longer watch it either which, oddly enough, hasn't led to me suffering any loss of quality of life at all as I simply do something interesting instead of slumping in front of a TV.

    Personally, the thing I loathe most about HD-DVD and BD is not the formats, but the fact that the distributors are using them as an excuse for not reducing the absurd prices they ask for and the restrictions they impose for online content on the likes of iTunes.

  97. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

    Open letter to SONY BD schmucks

    I hereby solemnly swear that I will buy a BD player and whole loads of BD discs the moment they will be stripped off their DRMs, and the players of their "system renewability", region coding and "protected path" and when the Internet connector will be wrenched out of of the back of the unit and thrown into the bin.

    Until then - bugger off, you silly bastards...

  98. Fenton

    TV and Player not the only costs

    To me it's the whole HDMI crap that really upped the cost.

    I have a nice home cinema setup complete with AV switching amp. I was an early plasma adopter and everything was connected via component (analog). I had to buy a new TV anyway as the old one suddenly went pop.

    I already had Sky HD which worked well over component but got the blue-ray player thrown in free. But it did not have component outputs that work with upscaling or blue-ray disks.

    So I had to buy a new av-amp. There are however some pros

    1) Alot less cable clutter (wife approves)

    2) HD-Audio really is a big step up in quality compared to compressed Dolby or DTS

    3) Upscaling over HDMI on standard DVDs is a great improvement

    4) SkyHD looks alot better over HDMI

    5) Picture quality on 1080p is fantastic (just watch BBCs Planet Earth

    Cons

    1) Price of Blue-ray disks (although is getting better thanks Amazon)

    2) Time to spin up. Grrrr

    3) DRM big Grrrr

    I am not however buying full price disks on current movies. What will however help Blu-ray sales is the release of titles like Star Wars, Lord of the rings, Aliens.

    Yet to see how blue ray perfoms as a data medium. In my industry the humple DVD is just not big enough (10 DVDs required for a software install, like shuffling old 3.5" floppies)

    Bandwidth in the UK is just not high enough for streaming of HD format and won't be for quite a while unless you are in a fibre cable area. When I watch a film it is a spur of the moment decision. I don't want to wait for a few hours whilst I down load a film that doesn't even have a 5.1 soundtrack.

  99. Yorkshirepudding
    Stop

    Bleh!

    i look at it this way i wanted a ps3 origionally and i got a HD Disc player at the same time, bonus! im buying a mixed bag of DVD's and BluRays

    if its a new superwhizzy film like say the dark knight ill buy it but ill still buy say the next series of family guy on dvd

    to be fair i have mostly rented blu rays and that suits me fine

  100. This post has been deleted by its author

  101. wilted
    Flame

    Ah the memories.....

    Is it just me or are these pretty much the same arguments we heard when dvds where introduced 20 quid for a disc wtf i can buy the vhs for a fiver etc. Anyone who has a decent HD tv in my book should be getting new releases on bluray the difference in picture and sound is more than worth it, rereleases meh for the most part they're dissappointing but Blade Runner looks amazing on br. I do seem to remember reading that bluray pickup rates where around 50% higher than that of dvd but thats most likely the ps3's fault.

  102. The Fuzzy Wotnot
    Alert

    I don't get all this HD stuff!

    Everyone is jumping on the HD bandwagon, HD this and that, but 90% of the HD offerings I have seen are just ports from earlier releases! What's the point in having HD is the content was shot in normal quality?!

    I recently bought Xbox 360 and HD gaming is a great step up, I never realised what I was missing until I upgraded my old original Xbox 3 months ago, but HD TV and DVD, give me a break, it ain't worth it!!!

  103. John P
    Paris Hilton

    Why bother?

    I haven't bought a film on DVD in years, purely because while all the films coming out these days are big special-fx laden blockbusters, they're not exactly up to repeat viewing. They're one off escapist movies, which they do well, but I need something a bit more than amazingly expensive fx to make a movie worthy of repeat viewings.

    Add to that the fact that I am perfectly happy with standard DVD quality, and the fact that I can get HD or near-HD quality videos off the net at any time I want, why would I want to shell out for an expensive player which takes expensive discs?

    Paris, because her movie is worthy of repeat viewings.

  104. greg 4

    £30 or £3?

    When buying a film, I buy Blu-ray where possible. But at £30 per movie, it's friggin expensive. The DVD upscaling on my PS3 is good enough for a lot of movies anyway (at least the ones that I don't warrant as 'good enough' to bother with full HD).

  105. Chris 72

    @Ben Norris

    "Thanks to the miracles of digital as long as the signal gets there it will be perfect so those £80+ HDMI cables that the likes of Currys and Comet try to sell you are absolutely pointless."

    Not so fast there. For short cable runs between devices with decent quality transmit and receive hardware, an el-cheapo cable will work just fine. Start trying to send digital data across longer lengths, from a device which isn't quite as good at generating a clean signal, or to a device which isn't quite as good at pulling a valid data stream out of the received signal, as they could be, and you start to learn that even in the digital world, there are still times when you need to pay more for the bits of wet string linking your devices together.

    It's not just a question of getting the signal to the other end of the cable, it's a question of getting it there without distorting it so much that the receiver can't pull anything intelligible from it - when it comes to sending signals down a bit of copper wire, especially at high bit rates, the analogue world has a nasty habit of gatecrashing the supposedly perfect digital party. So whilst I'd be happy to predict that in the majority of cases, people buying expensive HDMI cables *are* being ripped off by dodgy salesdroids, there are some situations where higher quality cables are absolutely essential.

  106. Simon 6

    I'm just an average Joe

    I bought a portable CD player in 1986 because the quality was awesome compared to my portable tape player.

    I bought a DVD player because the quality was far superior to VHS

    But blueray? Yeah the quality is a bit better but nowhere near the extent to justify ditching my collection of DVD's for BR.

    I need to have the same massive leap to even think for a second about replacing my film collection. My DVD has a sharp picture, lovely sound and that will do ta.

  107. EvilKurisu
    Paris Hilton

    ...Width

    While I agree there is a perfectly acceptable HD experience to be had online by streaming ,and even that this may well be the last physical format. There is something nice about having a physical product in your hand that you feel you own outright as opposed to data on a storage device. Digitally delivered content is a great concept especially for HDD manufacturers as people will shift to buying Hard drives for storage rather than the discs the media used to come on.

    I can see a future of people carrying large suitcases full of HDD' around rather than their selection of discs.

    Apart from all of the above ,this whole concept is at the mercy of the ISP's in reality.

    Anyone in the UK and unfortunate enough to on Virgin Media knows all to well about their evil throttling rules, even thinking about downloading a Blu-Ray worth of Data on Virgin is just madness. ISP's simply arent ready to provide the bandwidth needed for reliable effective mass data delivery.

    Paris because even she would like more ...width

  108. The Indomitable Gall

    Withnewspaper and I

    The "buy all your favourite films... again" bandwagon has arrived at platform 2.0, Absurdville station.

    I bought a newspaper a week ago for a free copy of Withnail and I. What was on the back of the DVD sleeve? "Buy this film on Bluray from the whateverth of June/July".

    Yes, they actually gave away the *entire film* on DVD as an advert for the Bluray disc.

  109. Field Marshal Von Krakenfart
    Thumb Down

    @Lex 2 Re Pricey

    I don't think 'old' movies are cheap, they are only cheap if the media maffia have produced too many of them and now they are trying to shift them.

    I picked up the 1958 (1959?) version of the war of the worlds in a "major high street retailer" for 4.99 some time ago, the Tom Cruise version come out and the "major high street retailer" bumps the price of the '58 version up to 17.99.... WTF.... Greedy Bastards

  110. Alex 32
    Paris Hilton

    Hmm

    @ Thecowking "I don't know where you guys are shopping but I've not paid anything close to that for any of my BDs yet, I think the most expensive one was £12."

    Agreed mate. I haven't bought any BR film for more than 14.99 (aside from Planet Earth, but that was a Chrimbo present!)

    I certainly wouldn't expect anyone to rebuy their entire collection! It's not for that, unless you have money to burn. No, it's more for us film-fans that want to see it in pristine condition. I have a couple of films that have been cleaned up to the point it looks like it was filmed yetserday rather than 30-60 years ago. True, they could release a compressed version on DVD, but that is a step back. The more compression technology improves (as it does), the less likely BR will survive. But come on! A downloaded film from any corporate entity versus a BR (or even DVD!) is still not reasonable! A quick look places a downloadable film at between 8-13 pounds.. 13 pounds?! (ref: iTunes). I think I would prefer to either pay for a DVD instead of a pint, or pay the extra (the cost of a pint, remembering that the mythical £25 is ..er.. mythical) ..

    Me, I have a hybrid of streamed movies, DVD, and BR. The streamed ones being ripped off a DVD for ease of use. This model also is how I do Music; never download as it's still cheaper to buy a CD (generally)

    Peace

    Paris, because she's cheap

  111. Chris 72

    @Citizen Kaned

    "@"BD movies insist I watch all the crap the studios/publishers/whatever shove on the front of every movie - so I have no control" - you mean like DVDs do? or do you watch too many copies to remember this?"

    Umm, rather than assume anyone who doesn't enjoy sitting through enforced trailers, FBI/FACT warnings etc. must be watching dodgy DVDs, how about considering that they are probably using a DVD player which simply ignores all the restrictions baked into the disc, and allows the user to skip these annoyances... How many Blu-ray players offer a similar level of control to their users, hmm?

  112. Anonymous Coward
    Flame

    @The Fuzzy Wotnot

    And this is where your lack of understanding of modern technology fails you.

    1/ You bought an Xbox. Bad move, as it's only slightly more "HD" than a Wii (despite what Microsoft want you to believe). It never started as even a HD console, with HD being added it as a afterthought, and even now only has a handful of proper (not upscaled) titles. 8 titles at last count (PS3 has 38).

    2/ Old movie content on 35mm film still has 4x more resolution than even Blu-Ray, so you are still getting more resolution for your money than the SD release,. And for the idiots that think the difference is between £3 and £30, do you buy your Blu-Ray from Harrods and your DVD from jumble sales?

    http://www.avforums.com/forums/high-definition-tv-hardware/185820-what-resolution-movies-recorded.html

  113. Aortic Aneurysm

    Life span

    So, the DVD in the same point in it's development was suffering the exact same problems. the discs were over-prices, blah blah blah.

    Dvd has been in my household for the last 10 years... in those ten years, we've seen prices of DVD discs drop from £20 to circa £7.99 for alot of new releases, Bluray will go exactly the same.

    As for loading times - Theres almost no difference between the last dvd I bought and the last Bluray I bought - I'm playing both through my PS3.

    I must be in the minority that enjoy the Bluray experience.

  114. Sooty

    @the fuzzy wotnot

    "What's the point in having HD is the content was shot in normal quality?!"

    Anything originally shot on 35mm film, is in HD already. The problem is poor quality film that has either degraded over time, or was pretty bad quality to start with. These need a lot of restoration work before being released, to clean them up. Ironically, they are in much higher definition than films, like the newer star wars, that were shot digitally.

  115. Rob Beard

    HD-DVD

    Having just bought an XBOX 360 Elite in preference to a PS3 I'll soon be investing on a HD-DVD drive for the XBOX. The way I see it is I'll be able to pick up a whole load of cheap movies which I can enjoy in 720p (only got a 720p telly) and then when the price of Bluray comes down to near DVD prices (I mean the players and the discs) then I'll get either a Bluray player or PS3.

    I'm not convinced that download are going to take off just yet (even with 20 Meg broadband on Virgin it still takes a while to download 4GB of data) but maybe in a couple of years when the speeds go up a bit (say to 50/75/100 Meg) then I can see it happening.

    Rob

  116. The elephant in the room

    Very little worth watching

    I bought a big HDTV a couple of weeks ago, and feeling that I ought to experience some proper HD on it I started researching bluray players. But then I had a look through all the blu-ray discs currently on sale on Play and Amazon, and there are probably no more that 10 that I would take even if offered to me for free! So many recent shit hollywood c-list films, so few classics that a film enthusiast who might be tempted to invest in a premium format would care to watch - whoever is in charge of deciding what gets released needs firing, into a brick wall.

    So I've concluded i will not waste money on a bluray player, but might get a PS3 for use as a media pc which will handle discs and stream all my downloaded content, and may even get me back into playing games.

    As for what i've actually been watching on my new TV, mostly low and standard quality downloads, and freeview. I've not even bothered to put a dvd, the best quality source available to me, on yet.

  117. Lloyd
    Coat

    It's people like you wot cause unrest

    I've not seen any "adult features" in Blu-Ray, I want my money shots without flicker and so clear I can see it sticking to eye lashes.

  118. Citizen Kaned

    hmm part II (REDUX)

    @"I have a PS3, I had it with a bog standard CRT for a good year. I finally decided I wanted to free up the 2ft by 5ft space my jumbo CRT took in the living room and bought a flat screen. Obviously I bought a HD Samsung. The only difference between playing GTA with and without a HD connection is that I can read the text clearer going through HDMI." -man! your eyes MUST be BAD!

    ps3 SD = 30HZ

    ps3 HD = 60Hz.

    that ie enough to make me want to move. the ps3 on SD is terrible. i guess its due to the samsung TV (they are all crap, the ones i have seen anyway - we have 5 here at work :() their monitors suck too. and to be honest GTA is a crappy looking blurry game. try some of the 1080p games, they will blow you away! or even something like tomb raider (new one) looks better than 90% of CGI films lol!

    @"Your eyes cannot tell the difference between a DVD and a Blu-Ray disc, anyone who says they can is lying to save face because they think they're stupid for not being able to tell the difference." - as before. get rid of that crappy samsung and get a decent 1080p 24fps dropdown TV. the quality increase is massive.

    people are also missing the much better quality sound aspect, althouigh i guess many people still use the TV speakers?

    @"1) I have yet to see any HD/BluRay movie show a better picture quality than my current, standard TV.

    2) Sound is way, WAY more important than picture

    3) Too bloody expensive (players and discs)

    4) Too much DRM

    5) Why waste money on BluRay when 3D is 'round the corner?

    I'll probably buy an HD telly once my current one dies, but only because that'll be what I can get; not because HD is any better."

    come round to one of our houses who have a decent rig then. and read my above point about sound quality, much sharper, althouigh i have a decent set of speakers all round my lounge.

    everyone here moans abouy DRM, yet the next piratebay article we will see all your names coming up with downloading crappy qualiuty movies and music. remember its the pirates than necessitate DRM. you cause it yourself. and btw - BR on PS3 - if i stick the disk in, then turn on the tv the movie is ready by the time i sit down. wow, what a major inconvenience. to be honest its better than the crappy piracy bullshit you see at the start of all legit DVDs (that you cant skip either)

    @""My best friend has gone back to watching VHS and I don't blame him! He can watch a film or a tv show and stop it come back to it a few days later and pick up exactly where he left off! How many people can do that with their DVD's or Blu-Ray? Not many."" - erm. any decent dvd player for the last 10 years will do this. the ps3 can remember too.

    @"I recently bought Xbox 360 and HD gaming is a great step up, I never realised what I was missing until I upgraded my old original Xbox 3 months ago, but HD TV and DVD, give me a break, it ain't worth it!!!" so, gaming in 720i or whatever is amazing by the same movie in 1080p is no difference? way to contradict yourself there!

    @"Umm, rather than assume anyone who doesn't enjoy sitting through enforced trailers, FBI/FACT warnings etc. must be watching dodgy DVDs, how about considering that they are probably using a DVD player which simply ignores all the restrictions baked into the disc, and allows the user to skip these annoyances... How many Blu-ray players offer a similar level of control to their users, hmm?" - fair point. i have never seen one that can skip PUO stuff. i cant even FF some on DVDs! in fact is PUO a directive from the DVD authors? what dvd player does this? or is it a PC one (i can skip as i use anydvd on my home machine... but have never found a bit of dvd s/w on a pc that comes close to a standalone dvd player/ps3 etc.

  119. Poneros
    Jobs Horns

    Blu-Pay

    I think there would be a higher margin of sucess if it wasn't for the recession, consumers are keeping there wallets closed because they believe the media who have told people 'money is scarce' and 'wait it will get cheaper'. If the media had told people to 'spend spend spend while it's cheap' then we may have moved a lot further on than we have done.

    Ideally Blu-Ray needs to drop in price to DVD costs and DVD's need to drop in price to bargain bin prices. This might encourage people to take the plunge and buy a blu-ray player. This is unlikely to happen as DVD and Blu-Ray are still competing markets, DVD prices will continue to tail Blu-Ray prices while greed still drives their premium cost. Now, is this because the HD battle has been won and our corporate owners think we need to now pay for our support, or is it simply just driven by greed so that they can get whatever they can?

    Oh well, I'm sure this could get talked about all day.

  120. Anonymous Coward
    Unhappy

    economic

    its the economy too. Who is willing to splurge on new tech when old is good enough?

  121. Bod

    China threat

    "If the Chinese invade with a lesser-DRM'ed über-HD format of their own choosing"

    They're pushing CBHD now. China Blue High Definition.

    Guess what CBHD is?

    Yes, it's HD DVD, rebranded! And Warner are signed up already.

    Even the players look identical to the Tosh line up, right down to the menus!

    (however the codecs are a little different, but that's down to China not wanting to pay for expensive codec licenses so they developed their own /ripped-off new codecs. Blu-Ray was a non-starter due to the massive licence costs and restrictions).

    Really I see it as whatever China can pump out cheap vs Downloads/Streaming. 5 to 10 years from now that is. At the moment HD is a non-starter for most.

    Even Sky HD is failing big time with very buggy boxes and still a £10 a month additional sub.

  122. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Blu-ray

    Blu-ray is an amazing technology. Peope are probably not initially purchasing players as they are waiting for them to come down in price further, and the price of purchasing movies to lower too.

    I have had a player for nearly a year now, and most of my movie purchases are in Blu-ray format also, because there simply is no comparison in picture quality.

    I don't download movies. I just couldn't be bothered. I prefer the aesthetic quality of putting a disc into a player, and hitting the play button, same as I prefer to buy audio CDs also. The quality just isn't there when you download a movie, and especially the audio quality. Couple that with the fact of having to buy bigger hard drives, and then keep buying them to store all of the movies you download. Then you have the issue of streaming them to your HD TV. No thanks!

    Blu-ray is the king!

  123. Jerry Masterson

    Blu-ray changed my viewing habits

    I used to buy about 50% of the DVDs I watched. Now, I don't see the reason to buy an old format and since I don't have a Blu-ray player yet there is no sense in buying the new discs. Instead, my AppleTV collection is growing. Same DRM crap but at least I can watch the movies on any computer in the house as well, instead of having to buy yet another drive. If I need to see a movie as soon as it's released on DVD (iTunes is usually a month behind) I go to TPB.

    Thanks, Blu-ray. If it wasn't for your expensive players and discs I'd still be buying DVDs.

  124. vincent himpe

    pointless

    There is such a thing as on-demand. And it is avaialble in hd. And for a tenth of the price of a blu ray disc you watch the movie you want when you want.... Most movies you will watch only once anyway ... no point in having the disc.

    physical storage is dead. streaming is the new thing.

  125. Vladimir Plouzhnikov

    RE: hmm part II (REDUX)

    "remember its the pirates than necessitate DRM. you cause it yourself."

    Wow, you live on what exactly planet?

    FYI, DRMs are not meant to fight piracy - piracy is an annoying but acceptable side-effect. The DRMs are there to control how and when you use the content. If you control that, you can charge the user for any new way he could find to watch your movie, you can restrict the number of times the content is watched, you can withdraw your permission to watch the content completely, forcing the user to pay for it again.

    Unless your idea of piracy includes such things as watching a movie while skipping the ads, watching at home a movie you bought in another country, watching a movie you bought on any other device of your choice, piracy has really, absolutely nothing to do with DRMs.

  126. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Am I noticing a trend here?

    No one wants to upgrade from XP to Vista / Windows 7, most common reason given - "XP works just fine for me, don't need to upgrade and don't want your pointless bloat and DRM"

    People don't want to change from DVD to BD, most common reason given - "DVDs work just fine for me, don't need to upgrade and don't want your pointless bloat and DRM"

    OK, its only two things, hardly a trend, but is it the way things are at the moment? There has been no huge improvement in the products on offer.

    People expect better, not more of the same but with chains attached.

    The last thing I bought that actually made things better than they were before was a Thompson DVR / Freeview Box that I bought in 2004.

    Since then everything on offer has been a new version of a previous product with no real improvement on the last.

  127. James Hughes 1

    If..

    Bluray players were a price where someone who needs a new DVD player would think ' thats not so much more and its future proof' then they would sell more. Even if the end user doesn't intend to buy Bluray disks just yet.

    I would - if they made a wall mounted one that would attach to the wall next to my wall mounted TV.

    BTW, what media player do people here use? Want to dump all my DVD so can stream from a PC on to TV's around the house. (Wireless if possible)

  128. Mark 9

    LOL, the Toshiba loonies are out.

    The 100 people still hurt by HD DVD and havn't moved on, clearly all got emailed and have arrived here to pretend Blu-Ray sucks...

    The funny thing, the HD DVD loonies claimed they cared about HD and were videophiles, clearly they aren't, or they would have embraced Blu-Ray by now.

    PS, clearly many people havn't heard of managed copy...

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Advanced_Access_Content_System#Managed_Copy

    Many discs already have this, allowing you to make SD copies of the HD movie you own, and copying them to portable devices like the PSP and iPod. I have about 4 disc that have it so far, I expect more to arrive, as companies want to justify the small price increase over DVD.

  129. Mike Richards Silver badge

    Got both - still prefer HD-DVD

    No region coding and all players came with a network port as standard in case a firmware update was needed.

    A good number of the budget (hah!) Blu-Ray players out there are old models with the older profile and no network port to update the software. They're also glacially slow to use. Apart from the PS3, even the latest Blu-Ray players are pains to use. One or two minutes to get as far as the first screen seem to be standard. Then that screen is the unskippable 'You thieving bastard' copyright warning. After that, I think Disney hold the record in requiring a further TWELVE button presses to get to the main menu.

    As for the movies - yes some of them look amazing in Blu-Ray - especially animation; but for the average brain-dead kickboxing cyborg timetraveller movie that's about the limit of my intellectual capacity these days, DVD will do nicely thank you very much.

  130. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Just say NO to BluPay

    @Efros - Paris cos she knows when she's been rogered... repeatedly!

    Dang, and she told me I was the first....

    @Version 1.0 - Whores aren't always welcome at the dinner table.

    Interesting that you didn't say they are NEVER welcome. That must mean that they ARE welcome sometimes. Erm....

    @goggyturk - even the missus can see the difference, and she's a total luddite.

    Not sure how you ended up with my missus, but send 'er home mate.

    @geejayoh - People were forced / coerced into moving their movie collections to DVD and now that's only just about finished.

    Don't I wish, but I haven't won the lottery yet. Still have about 100 VHS tapes at home and doubt that all of them are even available on DVD. I'll give up my VHS and DVD when they pry it out of my cold, dead hands....

    As far as I'm concerned, the additional DRM on BluPay and the machines is a deal-breaker from now until forever.

  131. Jason Bassford

    I guess I'm in the minority.

    I'll add my voice to the "few" number of people in this thread who've posted that they actually like Blu-ray.

    @The Avangelist: "Your eyes cannot tell the difference between a DVD and a Blu-Ray disc, anyone who says they can is lying to save face because they think they're stupid for not being able to tell the difference."

    That is a deliberatively provocative statement, and quite false. I can quite easily tell the difference on my TV. From DVD to Blu-ray is as different as VHS to DVD. Especially if you have a Blu-ray movie that's actually been produced correctly - as opposed to many that are just whipped off in the format but without any particular attention to doing a good job with it. This is not me just being "stupid" but an objective and empirical statement. There are movies that I've watched in both DVD and Blu-ray. With the Blu-ray I've been able to read text on signs in the background that cannot be read on the DVD version.

    I only buy Blu-ray at this point, and the movies I currently own on DVD that I consider to be the best I am slowly converting over. (Others I will just keep on DVD.)

  132. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    Reasons tp be cheerful

    "With the Blu-ray I've been able to read text on signs in the background that cannot be read on the DVD version."

    Sorry mate but if that's the best reason you can think of for justifying the existence of Bluray then the industry has definitely ost the plot.

    (yes I have seen Planet Earth in HD on a decent setup, right next to the same setup playing it on DVD. Yes it was impressive. No I didn't think it worth spending money on).

    Ooh look, new improved icons. Let's see, this one seems appropriate

  133. Mark 65

    @The Avangelist

    "My best friend has gone back to watching VHS and I don't blame him! He can watch a film or a tv show and stop it come back to it a few days later and pick up exactly where he left off! How many people can do that with their DVD's or Blu-Ray? Not many."

    I bought one of the first DVD players released, a sony, and it had the ability to store the position in up to 9 films I believe. That's around 1997.

  134. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Heh

    I never had the money to get into laserdisc, so DVD was a godsend to me. Movies in their OAR at a decent price, with lots of great extra features that I could watch on my computer. I spent all my money on them, and have a nice little collection now.

    There is no reason for me to upgrade. If I ever get a TV and want to buy a player, I might then, and just buy newer films on Bluray, but I can't even remember the last time I bought a newer movie... maybe about a year ago?

    Also, I hate the cases they come in, go figure.

  135. Anonymous Coward
    Boffin

    Being an audiophile...

    ...I swapped to Bluray as soon as it was released.

    The mere $15,000 for a top-line player was definitely worth it, and the $9,750 cables were an absolute must - conventional interconencts just can't handle the data-rate of Bluray, and introduce unwanted quantum bit-shift.

    The iridium-osmium disc storage cabinet also helps keep my collection pristine - of course I took all my old DVDs straight down to the local high-temperate incinerator and had them vaporised; even tiny particles of remaining DVD could permanently un-balance my delicate viewing room setup.

  136. George Oommen
    WTF?

    hmmm....

    for the idiots who compare bluray to upscaled dvd:

    http://fwd.five.tv/videos/news-bluray-vs-dvd-upscale

  137. Georges
    Thumb Down

    too pricey for what it gives

    also take into accoutn the recession. Also, you can get sky hd box free. VirginMedia box half price plus loads of channels, plus FreeSat. All of them are better value for money than buying a blu-ray player and discs. I'll hold back until i can buy a plyer for 50 quid or less and must be elegant :-), or hti 2 birds wiht oen stoen and get a PS3 or Xbox. Both better value than current Blue-ray players

  138. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Fool me once...

    Problem for BD is twofold, first, the normal marketing curve (innovators>early adopters>mass market>laggards) for digital media has been broken; all those innovators and early adopters have already made the jump to downloads (illegally or otherwise) or streaming, rendering their BD device redundant (I use my PS3 almost exclusively for playing back downloaded content - I probably own 10 BD discs max), even if the quality isn't as good as BD (a lesson the film and TV industries should have learned from music; for the majority of people, availability trumps quality). Without these ealry adopters telling friends and family to get BD, all the marketing in the world won't help BD succeed.

    The second problem is that the adoption curve for HD TVs has hit the mass market, but the mass market wouldn't know HD content if it bit them on the arse - most people assume if their TV says "HD enabled" that's what they're getting. The most salutary lesson for me was showing my (Luddite) brother the difference between SD and HD by flicking between a ITV SD and HD football broadcast using the red button on my Freesat box; the direct comparison was what it took for him to get the point of HD.

  139. Mark 9
    FAIL

    re: China threat

    Is this guy for real? Still clinging onto the HD DVD dream....

    even IF CHDVD makes it outside China, it will be Chinese movies. I suspect you will be wanting hollywood movies however.

    Sometimes I am saddened by the clueless idiots that post here.

  140. Anonymous Coward
    Welcome

    @Being an audiophile

    You forgot to mention your collection of original P W Belt accessories: silver rainbow foil, one drop liquid, CD pens, etc.

    http://www.belt.demon.co.uk/index.html

  141. Mark 9

    re: too pricey for what it gives

    You realise the Xbox doesn't do Blu-Ray? Infact it barely does HD, which was tacked on as a afterthought,

    Many Xboxes don't even have HDMI, and the ones that do, use a old obsolete version that does not do audio.

  142. Bod
    FAIL

    Re: LOL, the Toshiba loonies are out.

    And someone gave blu-ray.com the nod to send their rabid fanatical evangelists over here ;)

    But anyway, as for Managed Copy. You realise that Managed Copy was a Mandatory part of the HD DVD spec (just the technology wasn't realised to enable it) and it was actually Blu-Ray that included an additional feature which allowed studios to optionally disable, time limit or restrict it in their own way? Blu-Ray of course also ties the copies to selected Blu-Ray licenced portable devices, namely those made by Sony and Apple. HD DVD was all set to be part of Vista, Media Center and Home Media Server, allowing streaming around the house and storage on NAS systems on the most popular (by far) home operating system in the world. Still. Made your bed, etc ;)

    @Mark 9 -Who is the more foolish if you can't see just how important China is to the western world when it comes to electronics? Where do you think all the £20 DVD players are made? In fact, even the named branded hardware and even Japanese kit including Sony. All made in China, or source from Chinese components and rebranded.

    Which ones live the longest? Yep, the ones that the Chinese can knock out by the millions for peanut prices. Blu-Ray that aint.

    Not saying though that CBHD will get anywhere outside of China, but it's likely to be more successful however than Blu-Ray (remember just how many people live there!).

    It is relevant because if Chinese manufacturers don't see the point in Blu-Ray manufacture, then it's game over for Blu-Ray. No one else can produce the stuff in the quantity required, especially if you want cheap enough prices to make it a success.

    Long term though, it's downloads baby :-)

    You can argue who'd wait for a download, but frankly even the slow P2P illegal downloads of decently watchable quality HD movies can come down the wire on a 2mb connection overnight faster than it takes Royal Mail to deliver a shiny disc. If you've experienced the speed of iPlayer's offline downloads when served up by ISPs that provide the infrastructure, you can see how it can be faster still for legit downloads.

    Enjoy shiny discs while they last :-)

  143. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    2 things

    Have kept me from getting a blu-ray player. Firstly: far too expensive on the media. It annoyed me when DVDs came out that they cost so much more than VHS tapes, despite being cheaper to manufacture. I only upgraded because VHS was such bad quality. Even then I didn't replace my old collection. The same was true for Vinyl to CDs (I remember Vinyl costing £6 an album, and CD started at over £10 an album. Yes, Blu-Ray looks better than upscaled DVDs, but not double the price better.

    Secondly: I will never ever buy a region encoded device again as long as I live. I recently moved to the US from the UK and brought over my entire DVD collection. When I went to buy a new Hi-Fi setup, I spent hours choosing a receiver, hours more listening to speakers, just as long selecting a big HD TV. Then I went to the DVD section of the store and asked for all the upscaling multi-region capable DVDs. I had a choice of 1. Which cost $40. I would have happily paid $500 for a really good device, but my one must-have requirement was multi-region, so they didn't get the expensive sale they could have done. Now I have a collection of DVDs that is mixed between region 1 and 2, so I will never again buy a region encoded device.

    And interestingly, I'm not convinced that download will destroy physical media completely. Whilst you can download a movie faster than Royal Mail can deliver, it becomes harder when you want the whole of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. It is harder still when you want something to watch on a plane. Or something to watch when your internet connection is down. And I wonder how many people are going to end up rebuying digital collections on a regular basis because of hard-drive crashes, and then decide to switch back to CDs or DVDs.

  144. Anonymous Coward
    FAIL

    Mehhhhh Who cares?

    I'd only buy a death ray recorder, if the burner was $50 or less and the disks were under a dollar; and only for backing up stuff into hard copy.

    Beyond that - I have too much important stuff to do besides wasting my life watching crap from mostly greedy multinationals.

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