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Are HD titles actually taking advantage of the added disc space?

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Are HD titles actually taking advantage of the added disc space?

Old 11-12-07, 03:56 PM
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Are HD titles actually taking advantage of the added disc space?

I haven't taken the plunge yet into HD, but I was wondering what the deal is with certain titles having the same amount of discs as their SD counterpart. For instance, the Heroes S1 set. With 3x more disc space than SD-DVD, why is it spread across 7 discs instead of 2/3? That just seems like a blatant attempt to add perceived value to the HD set or help the rental chains get a bump (since ostensibly they make more money renting 7 discs instead of just 2). Is this a common problem thus far with HD releases - severely under-utilizing the new format's added capacity?

Last edited by joliom; 11-12-07 at 04:02 PM.
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Old 11-12-07, 04:02 PM
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HD content takes up a lot more space than SD content. They could easily fit the season of Heroes on 2-3 HD DVDs is it was in standard definition, but that would certainly defeat the purpose of HD DVD.
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Old 11-12-07, 04:03 PM
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Originally Posted by joliom
With all the added disc space of HD-DVD, why not put everything on 2/3 discs instead of 7 like the SD-DVD.
...because you can't store 6 or 7 hours of high definition content on a single HD DVD disc and maintain any real level of quality.
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Old 11-12-07, 04:33 PM
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Does HD content take up 3x more space than SD content? I was under the impression that even with the added PQ encoding needs of HD there was still a net gain, that it didn't just counter-balance out all the extra disc space. So are you saying that the ratio between SD-encoded file size and actual SD disc capacity is nearly identical to the ratio between HD-encoded file size and HD disc capacity (in other words, the same amount of HD content fits onto an HD-DVD as SD content does on an SD-DVD)?
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Old 11-12-07, 04:38 PM
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I'm sure it isn't a 1:1 thing, but if the art designers are working on a layout for a 7 disc SD DVD set, it makes sense to recycle the same setup for HD DVD. Also, fewer discs is not a selling point of the new format. Studios would have an uphill battle convincing people that few discs= more value.
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Old 11-12-07, 04:47 PM
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That's my point. Perhaps I should have said 5 discs instead of 2/3, but it seems like the HD-DVD Heroes set should be able to be in full HD and still require less actual discs than the SD-DVD set. So are the extra discs just laziness on their part (doubling up on artwork, etc.) or a way to maintain perceived value (as in, 7 discs for $70 = $10 per disc; 5 discs for $70 = $14 per disc).
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Old 11-12-07, 05:18 PM
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Kingdom of Heaven is a single Blu-ray disc vs. 2 discs on DVD (for the movie). I haven't seen anything else that is really optimizing the space on the disc.
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Old 11-12-07, 05:33 PM
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Originally Posted by PopcornTreeCt
Kingdom of Heaven is a single Blu-ray disc vs. 2 discs on DVD (for the movie). I haven't seen anything else that is really optimizing the space on the disc.

Someone please correct me if I'm wrong, but wouldn't the space allowances for each be something like this? Assuming that you had a constant bitrate file set at the maximum bitrate for each (BD being 39MBps and HD DVD being 29), the total number of program minutes would be something like this:

50GB dual layer BD = 214 minutes
30GB dual layer HD DVD = 172 minutes

Anyway, I think those numbers are relatively close, but, again -- only if the file was compressed at a constant bitrate which was set at the given format's max allowable. Obviously, then, with variable bitrate encoding, one could conceivably sqeeze way more material onto either format.
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Old 11-12-07, 05:35 PM
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Originally Posted by PopcornTreeCt
Kingdom of Heaven is a single Blu-ray disc vs. 2 discs on DVD (for the movie). I haven't seen anything else that is really optimizing the space on the disc.
Except the BD has no features. Is this true of the DVD as well?
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Old 11-12-07, 07:20 PM
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Originally Posted by The Bus
Except the BD has no features. Is this true of the DVD as well?
No, but his point was that the movie used up 1 disc instead of 2 (which had 4 discs total, 2 for the movie and 2 for extras). Then again, the BD doesn't have commentary, but they probably had room and left it off intentionally.

There are quite a few titles that are able to use 1 disc for the movie and special features instead of the 2 discs the DVD used, and the Kubrick BD versions use 1 disc instead of the 2 the HD DVD versions use. So, I think they are taking advantage of the extra space, even if it doesn't seem that way.
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Old 11-12-07, 08:35 PM
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Originally Posted by joliom
That's my point. Perhaps I should have said 5 discs instead of 2/3, but it seems like the HD-DVD Heroes set should be able to be in full HD and still require less actual discs than the SD-DVD set. So are the extra discs just laziness on their part (doubling up on artwork, etc.) or a way to maintain perceived value (as in, 7 discs for $70 = $10 per disc; 5 discs for $70 = $14 per disc).
The way I look at it is that an hour HD show is about 8GB, with 4 episodes per disc would be 24GB + extras.

Plus Heroes has a ton of interactive HD content.

I'm sure I'll be corrected though. That's just the way I understand it.
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