Blu-Ray has won the Hi-Def war!

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Post by EricJ » November 15th, 2009, 12:05 pm

As DVDBeaver's already been cited, their caps of of the Sim Blu didn't look too bad:
http://www.dvdbeaver.com/film2/DVDRevie ... lu-ray.htm

I've seen reviews of other VCI restorations of other obscure near-PD titles, and the company does seem to want to escape their PD-vulture past and become the next Image.
And wouldn't have happened if Sim hadn't been their annual cash-base. :)

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Post by Ben » November 15th, 2009, 2:39 pm

No, they don't look too bad at all, <I>but</I> (as said) they're not too much of an improvement over the two-disc edition because of limitations to the source material.

And, as said, the Beaver unfairly compared the BD <I>not</I> to the two-disc restored VCI set, but to the much earlier 1998 public domain release. That's like putting Snow White's recent release up against a VHS of a multi-generational telesync print, and not a true comparison.

But, hey, at least this confirms the frame ratio is correct on the BD, even if it does lose the other DVD extras.

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Post by Randall » November 15th, 2009, 4:26 pm

As I don't have the movie at all yet, I'm more likely to go for the Blu-ray. Once you've gone HD, it's hard to go back to buying standard DVDs (when the choice exists). However, for a bargain, I could go for the DVD too to get the other extras. Just depends on finding a big (and it would have to be BIG) discount on the DVD down the road.

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Post by Dacey » November 16th, 2009, 6:17 pm

The live action Grinch likely isn't worth the upgrade. They shot that film through a thick haze. When I first watched the DVD, I tried in vain to re-adjust my display settings, as it looked pretty crummy. By all accounts, the HD DVD wasn't much better.
You mean that's how the movie actually looked? I only ever watch the movie on television, and assumed that it only looked that way because of the way it was being broadcast. I always thought that the DVD wouldn't look as dark as that if I ever did decide to get it, but from what you say, I guess I was wrong.
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WB DVD to Blu ray upgrade program...

Post by GeorgeC » November 17th, 2009, 11:19 pm

Rats! Almost missed this. Much, much bigger news than the Target Gone With The Wind exclusive BD-only release --

From TheDigitalBits.com , Tuesday --

"And here's something very cool: Warner has just kicked off a new online program allowing you to upgrade Warner DVD titles for the equivalent title on Blu-ray (if available) for a reduced price. Some 55 titles are now available for exchange at the studio's DVD2Blu.com website. The upgrade cost is $7.95 or $9.95 depending on the title, and shipping is free for orders over $25. That's a pretty great way to make their long-time customers happy, if you ask us. Additional titles will be added to the program in the coming months. "

***************

This is the way to make long-term videophiles happy! Why (besides profit motive and greed) this hasn't been done before, I don't know...

It's a great deal. Wish it had been promoted better. I doubt that many people will take advantage of it and I sincerely doubt it will be available to videophiles outside of the States, too.

Kudos to WB! WB Home Video does tend to scoop Disney and the other home video companies at times. If this program is executed well, it's customer service at its finest!


*************

NOTE: Be sure to check out online prices for reduction on Blu rays. The only way this exchange program makes sense is if you come out ahead of discount sales. I'm already wondering about shipping costs and whether WB covers that. Media mail or not, USPS/UPS/Fed Ex shipping costs can eat up a lot of savings unless you're an incorporated business and you get bulk mailing discounts!

(For some of us, just getting rid of extra copies of a film for the best-quality version may be worth it. Realistically, most used video/game stores won't pay more than $3 for an old DVD. The $8-$10 mentioned (for specific titles) is a very fair exchange price/credit for a used title!)

That -- and online sales or discounts at Wal-Mart/Target/Best Buy/etc. on specific titles -- may be a deal-killer for many people. I've been seeing a lot more older WB BD catalog titles on sale for $15 and less at brick-and-mortar stores lately.

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Post by Ben » November 18th, 2009, 6:23 am

I think this is a knee-jerk reaction to the news that many outlets are starting to sell catalog BDs as low as $7.99.

It sounds good on paper, but you pay the shipping to send your disc in (don't know about shipping the BDs back to you) and have postal issues like insurance or it going missing/not received, etc.

You keep the original case anyway, so I'd rather have the actual DVD inside it too, for whatever purpose I may need it for in the future (plus any extras that inevitably don't make it to the Blu), and just pick up the BD when sales make it reasonable to do so.

It's a nice-sounding idea, but they wouldn't be doing it unless there was money in it for them, so I reckon this is basically a way for WB to "sell" you certain BDs direct, while claiming back some old DVDs. In the end, the consumer gets less than their outlay, when you pick things apart.


BTW, to be fair to Disney, they have always offered mail-in $5 and $10 rebates on their DVD-to-BD upgrades, meaning some titles, like Nightmare Before Christmas, only cost some people less than $10 with store discounts. That's a pretty good way of attracting business too, especially on new-to-BD titles - all you "lose" is a proof of purchase tab, and you get to keep your original DVD too!

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Post by Rodney » November 18th, 2009, 1:50 pm

I prefer Disney's program as well. I prefer to get a discount than to get a whole new DVD. Then again, for some of my older titles with scratches, this might be a great idea.

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DVDs are on the way out, Dudes!

Post by GeorgeC » December 27th, 2010, 8:41 pm

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142 ... DS=blu-ray

Great year for Blu ray... The format is finally taking off!

I saw several Disney titles that were very hard to find at Best Buy (F2k and B & B among them) and lots of people are buying Blu ray first preference OR Blu ray only.

I don't think DVD will die out completely... It has too many uses.

It just won't be the dominant home video format anymore.

1) It's a better format for preserving video-taped films and newscasts
2) Many old films just won't look better on Blu ray so why spend all that money for remastering when DVD is good enough? There are TV shows and older films that simply won't be worth the upgrade even if suitable masters are found. The original film elements or best surviving copies have to be in way better shape for BD mastering than they had to be for lower-res DVD. It's debatable whether films in the current shape of King Kong or the classic Universal Monster films are worth the effort since current elements for DVD are probably the best these films will ever look.

As for animated theatrical shorts, the situation may be even worse with many shorts lacking surviving 35mm masters and some in already semi-mediocre shape that aren't getting restoration even now. It's all about the profit motive and who gives enough of a darn to fix films that aren't 70 minutes long.

Fortunately, Disney took care of the bulk of its films.
The same can't be said for Warner and MGM animation.

3) DVD is still a far cheaper home video medium for archiving old films and doing VHS/LD transfers... The only thing I would add (reminder #3000) is that DVD-Rs and CD-Rs degrade over time. They may not change to mush but they become progressively harder for many machines to read and well, they rot!

My oldest CD-R (audio) is 15 years old. Right now, I can't play it on any audio device other than my computer. I took pre-emptive measures and dumped the contents to a new CD-R after ripping the original CD-R audio. Sad thing is that this is very temporary and rot will set in with the newer copy even under the best conditions!
I have read that BD-R is far more reliable and durable than CD-R or DVD-R. Something about the recording method; it doesn't use chemical dyes like the two older 5-inch formats. It's more stable over time than the other two. I've had DVD-R's go bad within two years!

A decent BD-RW writer (high enough speed so I don't wait into old age) is definitely an item I want for my next computer. I intend to use it to archive a lot of old programs unreleased to DVD or that have had inferior DVD releases. It's only a matter of time.

In the meantime, the only truly reliable method for digital preservation is a hard drive. It's the cheapest storage method for the price. Solid state may not be affected by extreme magnetic fields but it's far too expensive and impractical for archiving film footage.

I'll probably get a high-quality 27" HDTV monitor first...

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