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Blu-Ray or HD-DVD?

By Robert T. Trate     December 11, 2007

This week ‘Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix’ arrives in three different formats of DVD: Standard DVD, High Definition DVD (HD-DVD) and Blu-Ray DVD. All of these formats are releasing the Harry Potter films in a box set. With the books completed and two films still set to come out, buying a box set of five films instead of seven seems silly. Looking at the HD-DVD and the Blu-Ray sets I have to wonder, which one will be obsolete? I am asking you Mania readers to convince me which format is better. Some of you have complained (based on your posted comments) that Blu-Ray leaves little to be desired in special features (especially when it comes to ‘Pirates of the Caribbean - At World's End’).   Maybe this is based on Disney’s decision to re-release it with special features after Blu-Ray becomes the established format or simply for you to buy the HD-DVD when it becomes the established format (and get your money again). HD-DVD is now releasing discs with both standard DVD and HD-DVD as their lure. Clever? Sure. And for me it might be right choice because at least I am getting my movie in one accepted format and the possibility that in the future, I will have made the right choice. Compared to Blu-Ray where all I think is, what if it doesn’t work out? So what is your opinion?
 
I am going to be honest with you guys and gals. I took the year off from buying movies on a whole. Sure I got a few titles here and there that I couldn’t live without (I didn’t go crazy like I normally do) but I wanted to see how this year in DVD technology would turn out. Sound crazy? Well, I did the same thing a few years ago when DVD’s were new and I wanted to see how it would all work out. A little over ten years later here I am sitting and watching (hopefully in ten years this won’t happen again). The catalogues are improving and almost all the new titles are coming out in one or both formats, though I noticed a few titles are absent that became the deciding factor before; the ‘Star Wars’ Saga, and ‘Indiana Jones’ trilogy. Both took years to be released on DVD.   I am sure George Lucas is chomping at the bit to release all these films (George, are you actually growing a heart three sizes to big?). Why aren’t they being released on Blu-Ray and HD-DVD? If you look at the past (for DVD) Spielberg and Lucas’s catalogues became the deciding factor and general acceptance of the DVD format. When they decide, I think that is when I will decide too. Not because their films are the end all, be all of my collection, only because when they pick a format for their films many other companies will follow suit.   My prediction is in November of 2009, Lucas will finally release all four ‘Indiana Jones’ films in one chosen format. Why 2009? Because in 2008, Lucas has to release ‘Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull’ first in regular DVD and then get you to buy the box set all over again on Blu-Ray or HD-DVD. So fall 2009 the Blu-Ray/ HD-DVD war will be over.
 
ACTION / ADVENTURE / THRILLERS / WESTERNS
7 Murders for Scotland Yard
 
Born Killers (2005)
 
The Bourne Ultimatum (Widescreen Edition) (2007)
 
The Bourne Ultimatum (Full Screen Edition) (2007)
 
The Bourne Ultimatum (Combo HD DVD and Standard DVD) [HD DVD] (2007)
 
Dead End Drive In/Cut and Run
 
Framed for Murder (2007)
 
Hack! (2006
 
Latitude Zero (Dub Sub) (1969)
 
Legend of Zorro [Blu-ray] (2005)
 
Man Who Could Work Miracles (1936)
 
Undead Or Alive (2007)
 
Undertaker and His Pals (1966)
 
ANIME
Air: The Movie
 
Fullmetal Alchemist, Volume 5: The Cost of Living (The Viridian Collection)
 
Fullmetal Alchemist, Volume 6: Captured Souls (The Viridian Collection)
 
Gunslinger Girl Box Set - Viridian Collection
 
Kurau Phantom Memory, Vol. 5: Twin Destinies
 
Megazone 23 Complete Collection
 
Pumpkin Scissors, Vol. 2 - The Enemy Within (Limited Edition)
 
Slayers Next - The Complete Second Season
 
Spiral Box Set - Viridian Collection
 
Tenchi Muyo GXP Box Set
 
Tokyo Majin, Vol. 1: Dark Arts-Dragon Stream
 
CARTOONS
Voltron, Vol. 5: Defender of the Universe-Black Lion
 
Walt Disney Treasures - The Adventures of Oswald the Lucky Rabbit
 
HORROR
Blood Descendants (2007)
 
Evil Dead Trap 2 (1991)
 
Footsteps (2006)
 
Masters of Horror: The V Word (2006)
 
Silent Night, Deadly Night (1984)
 
Suffocation (2005)
 
SCIENCE FICTION / FANTASY
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets [Blu-ray] (2002)
 
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets [HD DVD] (2002)
 
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire [Blu-ray] (2005)
 
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire [HD DVD] (2005)
 
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Two-Disc Special Edition) (2007)
 
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Widescreen Edition) (2007)
 
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Full-Screen Edition) (2007)
 
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Combo HD DVD and Standard DVD)
 
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix [Blu-ray] (2007)
 
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban [Blu-ray] (2004)
 
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban [HD DVD] (2004)
 
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone [Blu-ray] (2001)
 
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone [HD DVD] (2001)
 
Threshold (2003)
 
TV LAND
Big Love - The Complete Second Season (2007)
 
Dirt - The Complete First Season (2007)
 
Frasier - The Tenth Season (1993)
 
Frasier - Complete Series (1993)
 
Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C. - The Third Season (1964)
 
Lost: The Complete Third Season -- The Unexplored Experience
Bonus Feature(s): The World Of The Others -- Friends Or Foes? Secrets And Mysteries Revealed By Cast And Producers. LOST Flashbacks -- All-New, Never-Before-Seen Flashbacks. LOST On Location -- Go Behind-The-Scenes With These All-New Tales From Season 3. The LOST Book Club -- Get Hints To The Significance Of LOST's Literary References. LOST In One Day -- An Exclusive Look At 24 Hours In The Life Of This Ambitious Series. Deleted Scenes, LOST Bloopers, and Audio Commentaries.
 
Lost - The Complete Third Season [Blu-ray] (2006)
 
Masters of Horror: Season 1, Vol. 4 [Blu-ray]
 
The Criterion Collection
 
BOX SETS
The Bourne Trilogy
(The Bourne Identity / The Bourne Supremacy / The Bourne Ultimatum) [HD DVD] - Amazon.com Exclusive (2007)
 
Harry Potter Years 1-5 Limited Edition Gift Set
 
Harry Potter Years 1-5 Limited Edition Gift Set [Blu-ray]
(Sorcerers Stone/ Chamber of Secrets/ Prisoner of Azkaban/ Goblet of Fire/ Order of the Phoenix)
 
Harry Potter Years 1-5 Limited Edition Gift Set [HD DVD]
(Sorcerers Stone/ Chamber of Secrets/ Prisoner of Azkaban/ Goblet of Fire/ Order of the Phoenix)
 
The Jason Bourne Collection
(The Bourne Identity / The Bourne Supremacy / The Bourne Ultimatum)
                                                                                                                 
Tales of Terror Collection: From Tokyo And All Over Japan (4DVD)
 
United Artists 30-Disc Deluxe Gift set
 
UA 90th Anniversary Prestige Collection (90 Titles)
 
Walt Disney Treasures - Disneyland - Secrets, Stories & Magic
 
Walt Disney Treasures - The Chronological Donald, Volume Three (1947 - 1950)

COMMENTS AND RESPONSES

Showing items 1 - 10 of 29
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westend 12/11/2007 12:54:46 AM
There are so many arguments for both sides I won't bother. The only thing you need to know is that Blu-ray has outsold HD-DVD nearly 2 to 1 the past year, and there are a lot of rumors going around that WB is about to go Blu-ray exclusve.
HudsonTaco 12/11/2007 12:57:07 AM
Well I'm in the same boat as you waiting for the format war to be over but as I own a PS3 I have bought a few BlueRay discs and my utter hatetred for Microsoft makes me lean in that direction but on the whole its still too early to tell. Everything I read says that Blueray is out selling HD at a respectable rate but when 2 major film companies support the "losing" HD format it just makes me not want to buy anything I'm really pissed about Transformers not being on BlueRay, so much so I refuse to even rent the DVD also Heroes no Blueray and it looks like BSG will aslo not be on Blueray. Stupid format war! Interesting Story I posted a few days ago http://goldentaco.org/phpBB2/viewtopic.php?t=5766
chaotic 12/11/2007 1:02:12 AM
I just bought an HD-DVD player today. Im asking for blu-ray for christmas
hanso 12/11/2007 6:24:47 AM
I have blu ray cause I have the PS3. I have a few titles and they look awesome on my hdtv. I'm not getting Harry Potter but only because I'm wating for all 7 films to be released on a box set in Blu ray. I'm still upset I'm going to have to buy the Spider-Man Trilogy in Blu Ray when I have the first 2 in the dvd formta already. Anyway, I'll tell you why Blu Ray is better. They are basically the same format, it's just Blu Ray can go to 50g double layer disc and HD only 17G, although they are talking about a possible 50G triple layer disc in the future. IF that's the only difference then Blu Ray is better right now just cause of that one little difference. It's not much, but it's something. It's like 2 basketball players that can both drive right no problem but then one of the two can drive left if it wants to. Also there are more titles on the Blu Ray format than on HD DVD right now, so that's something. Plus if you are into Netflix like I am, you can only rent Blu Rays. Blu Ray is a bit expensive but it's dropping in price to compete with HD DVD. Anyway, I'm very happy with my PS3 and Blu ray movies.
ultrazilla2000 12/11/2007 7:20:19 AM
There's no doubt these HD movies are pretty...but I have yet to be disappointed with my regular nice television and DVd player with regular DVD's. Never once have I been left feeling like I was missing out on something. As long as they keep making regular DVD's, I'll be fine watching others wage this "war". When the dust settles, let me know who the winner is, only THEN might I be willing to fork out $30 per movie.
hanso 12/11/2007 7:33:22 AM
Ultrazilla, I hear you but trust me on this, when you decide to go HD , a HDTV plus either Blu Ray or HD DVD, you will never look at your dvds or standard definition tv the same way again.
crazay 12/11/2007 7:53:59 AM
I'm also on the BluRay wagon but only because I have a PS3 otherwise I'de have waitied until a clear winner. I do echo what Hanso says about the difference in image quality. I only buy high action/special effects heavy movies on BluRay and have not regretted it one bit.
DemonDoyle 12/11/2007 7:59:02 AM
Here's why HD is going to win the battle over Blu-Ray. First, think of all the new revolutionary ideas Sony's had that's tanked such as the Mini-Disk or the UMD. These were supposed to be a huge new thing and they didn't survive. Now, let's go back to the 1980's remember the Betamax. The adult fim industry sided with VHS and they were the surviving format. In present day the adult film industry sided with HD-DVD, and HD-DVD should win. Personally, I don't care who wins. Both of the formats look and sound the same. I just wish the battle would end so the surviving format can take over.
BSGPROPHET 12/11/2007 8:00:43 AM
The format wars will be decided by the porn industry. An industry that is bigger than the NBA and Major League baseball combined. They went with VHS over Beta (VHS won) and so far they are going with HD DVD over Blue-ray. Reasons for this is that HD DVD disks are easier to make, they use the same disk making machines as regular DVD’s, and also Sony does not allow porn to be made using their technology. Therefore, in my opinion HD DVD will win.
HunterRose 12/11/2007 8:16:00 AM
DemonDoyle & BSGPROPHET: I had the same opinion as you two, but as someone pointed out, it's a different era. Back in the day, porn wasn't readily available. When VCR's came around it made it possible for people to get their porn and view it at home. This is why VHS won the format war. Nowadays, porn can be dowloaded for free and will still be available in regular DVD format even if Blu-Ray wins. Porn will not be the deciding factor. I also agree that the format war will be decided by Lucas and Spielberg (what can I say, I'm a Star Wars fanatic).
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