HD Talk The place to discuss Blu-ray, 4K and all other forms and formats of HD and HDTV.

The end is near...share your stories.

Old 02-19-08, 12:45 AM
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The end is near...share your stories.

Well looks like we are a couple hours away from zero hour. HD is walking the mile, it's kind of sad really.

Up until December I was a loyal HD-DVD supporter. I bought my first HD-DVD player (The HD-A1) two months after it was released...man that thing was built like a tank!

My first movie? Serenity....man was it a blast. I had seen it in the theaters roughly 8 times....but watching it in HD after watching it on DVD many times showed me just how powerful this whole HD stuff could be.

Eventually traded out the A1 for the 360 add on (due to load times) and finally settled on the HD-A2 when Amazon had it for the insane low price of $220!!!

It wasn't until Nov. 07 I picked up a PS3 thanks to the Walmart deal, and the following week rumor spread of WB switching sides. It was like HD-DVD suddenly caught cancer or something...you knew its time was limited...but hoped that some miracle would come and save it.

And here we are...the last few hours of the format that showed me how cool HD movies could be. They did a lot of things right...but it just wasn't enough.

Am I angry Blu Ray won? Not at all...it delivers the same quality HD-DVD did, but it just doesn't have the personal history.

Farewell HD-DVD! For you were a leaf on the wind...watch how you soar!
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Old 02-19-08, 12:57 AM
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I pre-ordered my HD-A1 and had it in my hands back in those dark days when there were three titles total to choose from. The only one I wanted -- Serenity -- wasn't in any of the stores I checked, so I called a relative and had him mail me a copy from his local Best Buy, while I bought Phantom of the Opera just to have something to watch. I never did actually watch the movie, even close to two yers later -- just gave it a spin to say, "hey, look! HD DVD!"

I have more than 250 HD DVD discs in my collection, so I more than got my money's worth out of that player, and I'm still eyeing getting a second deck.

I picked up my PS3 last June, burning off a $500 gift card and winding up with what might be my favorite piece of CE in a house overflowing with the stuff. What pushed me over the edge was seeing Immortal Beloved languishing in DVD Talk's list of available titles to review. I guess I figured I wanted it enough to buy a player and replace a receiver that was only a couple of years old.
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Old 02-19-08, 12:57 AM
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i'm just glad my original hunch was correct and i invested a lot more in blu than i did hddvd. i've had my ps3 pretty much since launch and i finally decided to pick up the hd-a2 during the $100.00 wal mart sale.
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Old 02-19-08, 12:59 AM
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Originally Posted by Adam Tyner

I picked up my PS3 last June, burning off a $500 gift card and winding up with what might be my favorite piece of CE in a house overflowing with the stuff.
The PS3 is really a great piece of hardware. I don't use it for gaming at all but I do love using it for Blu-Ray, downloading HD movie trailers, streaming HD episodes from my Mac.
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Old 02-19-08, 01:00 AM
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originally posted on January 27, 2007 on another forum.
Originally Posted by DETO View Post
has anyone on **** made the jump to high def yet? if so, what have you chosen? hd dvd? blu ray? both? why did you choose one over the other? or neither? i have blu ray and am thinking about getting a hd dvd in the near future. even though i'm still kinda hesitant about picking one up, because i think blu ray is going to eventually win the new gen format war. and why can't there be more high def channels on dish (and tv in general), we only have 29 hd channels (on dish). after getting used to watching games and tv shows in hd, it's hard to go back to watching standard definition tv.
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Old 02-19-08, 01:48 AM
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I bought into HD-DVD mostly because of the region free capabilities. It was exciting to see what Studio Canal would be releasing. I have the Xbox 360 addon with King Kong and bought Batman Begins the same day. King Kong blew me away.

I knew this day was inevitable. But here I am still buying HD-DVDs, still with more HD-DVDs in my collection than Blu-rays. I like Blu-ray, it's certainly a worthy successor as Sony has really put out a great product. But HD-DVD you were always first.
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Old 02-19-08, 01:51 AM
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Bought the HD-A20 which frankly is a beautiful machine. I only have 11 discs but I certainly plan on buying more. I've toyed with the PS3 which is a decent enough machine that I'll most definitely buy one now that the end is nigh. Still, on my system, it still doesn't hold a candle to my HD-A20 as far as upconversion goes.

So I didn't sacrifice much but what I did spend I still consider money well spent and really chafe at stuff like the TV newscaster that i saw saying that HD-DVD players are paperweights, which frankly isn't so. In fact I'd say confidently that it's the best player I've ever owned and certainly will stay in my rack for a long time to come. Especially when I hopefully get some deals on HD-DVD films.
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Old 02-19-08, 03:55 AM
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So let me guess this straight....Toshiba actually made an upconverting DVD-player and sold it at $400-$300 to early adopters...and people actually bought it ????.....DAMN....just DAMN.....it is true....a sucker born every minute
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Old 02-19-08, 05:05 AM
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A priest and pastor from the local parishes are standing by the side of the road holding up a sign that reads, "The End is Near! Turn yourself around now before it's too late!"

"Leave us alone you religious nuts!" yelled the first driver as he sped by.

From around the curve they heard screeching tires and a big crash.

"Do you think," said one clergy to the other, "we should just put up a sign that says, 'Bridge Out' instead?"

----

Oh wait! You mean the end for HD DVD!

Well as for me... I'm glad I waited out for the outcome. I was a little bit disappointed that HD DVD loses the war - I was rooting for HD DVD back when the war is still in the rage. Like some of us, the fanboy-ism of the blu camp made me indifferent with BD.

But then of course comes the Warner announcement to go exclusively blu and I know everything is going to be bleak for HD DVD and so... a few weeks later I got my BD ROM drive, and I ordered my first BD disc from Amazon, Blade Runner BD briefcase.

Up until recently, I'm still thinking of a feasible way to invest in HD DVD equipment because I still want some of HD DVD titles (such as King Kong, Forbidden Planet and Serenity.) But I guess I won't be doing that now that things changed.
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Old 02-19-08, 05:16 AM
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I bought an HD DVD player last May for two reasons: It was half the price of blu, and I just couldn't wait anymore. I could not tell a difference between the two image or audio wise. And since all the BD players except the PS3 were junk, I went with what seemed like the more reliable format. But even after my purchase I was afraid to keep buying HD DVD's for fear that they would become coasters, and I only have 6 at the moment. At Christmas I ended up with a PS3 and have around 20 BD's. It just seemed like Blu-Ray was going to win all along, so I felt more comfortable buying.

Personally, I think if it wasn't for the PS3, Blu-Ray would have lost the war because of the poor quality of their players. Toshiba's machines were solid right out of the gate and the prices were better.
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Old 02-19-08, 05:50 AM
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As some of you may know, I worked at EB Games (which was then bought by Gamestop) for several years. I was an assistant manager at a store when the 360 was getting ready to launch. I remember, shortly after the launch of the system, talk started to spring up about HD DVD and Blu-ray. I had gotten a great deal on an HDTV and was more than ready for HDM to come my way. I remember reading the specs and hearing that Blu-ray was going to come standard on all PS3 systems, and thinking to myself, "There's no way HD DVD is even going to last a month with 20GB less space and going up against the PS3, the unstoppable juggernaut of next gen." Then came E3 2006. Suddenly the PS3 was $600 and the games looked less than impressive compared to Microsoft's upcoming slate. And the Wii blew both of the other parties out of the water. At this point I decided that if the entry point into Blu-ray was $600, I might have to look at HD DVD.

I started posting here and at AVS. At first I was very much an all Blu supporter. Several of the members here (including Adam and Josh Z) were very adamant that HD DVD was a more than solid technology, it was in fact an excellent one. As I'm sure happened to many of us, I finally saw a title I could no longer stand to not own in HD. That was Unforgiven. What can I say, I'm an Eastwood fan. I got an HD-A1 (which I still use to this day) from Amazon for something around $100 off MSRP and got Unforgiven, Chronicles of Riddick, and Serenity. By chance Serenity arrived before the other two, and that was the first HD DVD I watched. I had never seen the film, but watching it on HD DVD was the way to do it. It's still one of my favorite discs on the format. Riddick was also very impressive. I then went on a buying spree, picking up almost any title that I could, but not Phantom of the Opera or Doom.

At this point, Blu-ray was experiencing delays, technical difficulties with decks and 50GB discs, and I remember a very strong feeling both here and on AVS that HD DVD had done such an amazing job that nothing would topple it. It didn't help that the first Blu-ray player was a grand and was reportedly faulty right out of the gate. It absolutely did not help that the first titles (including the now infamous Fifth Element and Robocop) suffered from poor authoring and a less than attractive mix of old MPEG-2 encodes and PCM mixes on 25GB discs. There was plenty of fights to be had between HD DVD supporters and Blu-ray supporters, with HD DVD people asking why you should pay a premium for a bad product, and the Blu-ray supporters saying that it will be great in the future. I will admit that I contributed more than my fair share of jabs and attacks at Blu-ray supporters, but it was a very acrimonious time (IIRC, even more so than what we've seen here in the past few months). Around the middle of 2006 DVD Talk put up a wanted ad for HD DVD reviewers. I had done online reviews in the past and was one of the few people around with an HD DVD player, so in October of 2006 I debuted with my review of Space Cowboys (I told you I have an Eastwood thing).

And then came Casino Royale. The movie blew me away in the theaters, and while it galled me, I knew the only way to get it in HD (and with lossless audio) was to buy in to Blu-ray. At this point, Blu-ray had made a few strides, including getting 50GB discs off the ground and some good sets like The Descent, but overall, it still didn't feel like a winning format. But I couldn't resist and took the plunge, buying a PS3, a BD remote, Casino Royale and a few other discs, and decided never to look back. I was pleasantly surprised by several of the titles, and realized just how silly all the format bickering was. I had become a slave to hype and an unrealistic emotional investment. Both formats had good things to offer, but I couldn't deny that I still preferred HD DVD and usually bought the HD DVD version of a title released on both, unless there was a specific benefit to getting it on Blu-ray.

Pirates of the Caribbean changed all of that. I attended a press party for the release of the disc, and Disney sucker punched me right in the gut. All of my preconceptions about the superiority of HD DVD went right out the window when I saw the crystal clear images of Dead Man's Chest and heard the unbelievable PCM soundtracks of the two films. I was hooked on the Blu-ray format and from that point forward, I didn't give a damn who won the format war. In fact, I actually wrote an article stating that the perceived unattractiveness of the format war actually hid its benefits to the consumer in lower priced hardware and the great leaps Blu-ray had taken since its debut. Transformers had a similar effect on me for making me realize that DD+ can sound as good as a lossless mix. Over the course of this format war, I've had a lot of my preconceptions challenged and I'd like to think I managed to keep an open mind about everything.
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Old 02-19-08, 07:55 AM
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Here's my HD DVD story:

...It was like we was both back in older times and I was on horseback goin' through the mountains at night. Goin' through this pass in the mountains. It was cold and there was snow on the ground and HD DVD rode past me and kept on goin'. Never said nothin' goin' by. HD DVD just rode on past... and it had its bubble wrap wrapped around it and its drive door closed and when it rode past I seen it was carryin' a stack of red-boxed movies and I could see the the light inside of its disc drive. 'Bout the color of the moon. And I knew that it was goin' on ahead and it was fixin' to show me an HD movie somewhere out there in all that dark and all that cold, and I knew that whenever I got there it would be there...

And then I woke up.
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Old 02-19-08, 07:55 AM
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I got into HD DVD relatively late, in August 2007 when Amazon had a crazy sale with 3 free movies with player, plus a B2G1 at the same time.

As an HT enthusiast, I selected the XA2. I'm still quite pleased with my purchase, as the machine is a tank, and performs quite well in all regards.

I selected HD DVD because I liked the selection of movies better, and felt it was more oriented to the HT market, while Blu-ray seemed geared to a younger demographic. Also, I am a big proponent of region-free media.

I reluctantly bought a PS3 in January after the WB announcement. I'm not at all a gamer, but it seemed the best solution to get into Blu-ray for a reasonable price, as well as retain some resale value for when better players come out.

I'm still not convinced Blu-ray will be successful either. There have been many debates on here and elsewhere with empassioned positions on both sides. In truth, I don't think anyone can say for sure.

I was at my Dad's house the other night watching Hotel Rwanda on DVD upscaled on his A3, and we both were quite impressed with both the PQ and sound, so who knows?

Last edited by BuckNaked2k; 02-19-08 at 07:59 AM.
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Old 02-19-08, 08:22 AM
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I spent a bunch of money over the last few months on both formats. I guess now I'll continue to spend money on just one. Ce la vie! That's my story and I'm sticking to it. Can I go to Disney World now?
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Old 02-19-08, 08:23 AM
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I got the 360 ad on the day it came out.

God was I impressed. King Kong was the first flick, and it really impresses me, the hair, I remembered.

Price is always a thing for me, so I was looking at HD as my format of choice.

Until, one day, there was a PS3 80 gig sitting on the USED shelf of a local game store. At the time, it was only out for a month, and the used price was $400. Great launch price. Haha

I picked it up. For some reason, my first Blu Ray's popped more then the HD's did. Maybe it was the ad on?

So, after a year of buying both formats, I pick up the A2 at the Walmart xmas sale. $99, whatever. Still a good dvd player.

To me, the BD still popped more.

Then Warner did that thing. I took all my non exclusive HD discs to that local used game store the next day, got top $ for the used HD's, and replaced them with BD.

Glad I did.

Honestly, I liked how the HD-DVD's used the menus and stuff better, I still do, and it is sad to see the fight end so quick.

I don't understand "fanboy's" on either side, but I can see how BD won this thing, but I just hope its the best format for us.
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Old 02-19-08, 08:26 AM
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The end is near...share your stories
Now I can spend money!
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Old 02-19-08, 08:40 AM
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I was laughing at you early adopter folks and your HD disks. It wasn't the format war that really bugged me, but the price. Then again I was still running a 480p projector at the beginning of the war. I still haven't found anything SD-DVD has looked better on than 480p DLP.

Anyway, I always preferred HD-DVD due to its region-free nature, no BD+, and optional copy protection. I hate DRM.

Upgraded to 720p projector in October '06. I had a chance to pick up the 360 add-on for $150 with King Kong (which I hadn't seen yet) in March '07 and couldn't resist. Our first HD-DVD was Children of Men as my wife saw it in the theater and loved it. What a great movie, and great PQ.

However, watching an often-quiet movie like Children of Men with the obnoxiously loud Xbox360 running 5-6 feet away was painful.

So BB had a deal on the A2 - $299 and if you bought the Matrix set, you got two free HD-DVDs. Good enough for me. After a little deinterlacing evaluation and a google hunt showing the A2 did 480i over HDMI (allowing my projector's Faroudja to deinterlace for anime and the like), the Oppo 970 and the Xbox add-on went off to ebay for about $300...meaning the upgrade actually made me a few bucks.

I still think HD-DVDs and their combos had a better chance of getting mainstream success than BD. But it was too hard to overcome the millions of PS3s floating around. I seem to have picked up a grudge against Sony over the past few years, but I'll buy any product if it's good enough. I'm just not fantastically happy about doing so.

Anyway, my HD-DVDs are inhouse to stay. I just bought a refurb XA2 for $240 a few weeks ago and it was worth every penny, and remains my primary DVD player.


----------------------------------

I bought a 20GB PS3 on ebay last summer for $340 - $80 sale of PS2 = $260. I would never have bought it soley as a BD player, but I'm a gamer despite my apathy for any PS3 games yet. My PS1 games via component video wouldn't play nice with my LCD or my Onkyo 605, so I got a great PS2/PS1 scaler and BD player.

Last edited by GreenMonkey; 02-19-08 at 08:46 AM.
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Old 02-19-08, 09:07 AM
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I was going to wait everything out...I was never an early adopter and I usually try and play it safe with my purchases. The PS2 was my first DVD player (launch unit still running today). I had a few decent DVD players at the time and had no desire to upgrade just yet.

I ended up getting a 60GB PS3 for $460 at Meijer in early 2007. I watched Kingdom of Heaven DC and I was hooked. Since I bought BD first, I was hoping it would end up being the next gen format of choice (at the time).

Fast forward to August of 2007 and I saw what I thought was a smoking Amazon deal for an A2...$218 plus 3 movies (during the B2G1 sale). I picked up the A2, Batman Begins, Shaun of the Dead, and the Bourne Supremacy...as well as a few other HD DVD's and BD's during the sale. There was nothing better than being format neutral. The A2 played like a champ and I had access to all the HD movies available at the time.

Both players have performed flawlessly to date and we use the A2 as our main SD DVD player too. I'm happy to own the A2 and my HD DVD's. I will not sell them and will continue to watch my movies and use my A2 until it dies. I have to say, being in the middle of all this was a ton of fun.
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Old 02-19-08, 09:08 AM
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I bought the 360 add-on in January 2007. At the time I was anti-Sony due to the price of the PS3, and what I considered a software failure for the PSP. HD was the true successor of DVD and cheaper too. So I used one of the great $40 off coupons from Circuit City. I had been watching HD content for a while on Cable, but it was great to have some of my favorite movies too. Superman Returns and Batman Begins were my first.

I picked up the HD-A2 when it was cut to $300, and Best buy had a deal also that week with The Matrix set. By this time 2 of my friends jumped on the HD bandwagon, with another being Blu-Ray since the PS3 launch.

By December I finally reached the 100 disc mark, in my HD collection. A friend of mine asked what I would do if HD failed. I replied I would piss and moan for a day, and then the next cash out and go Blu. By this time there were some nice PS3 games I was interested in, and the prices had fallen some. See where this is going?

So after WBís announcement I knew the writing was on the wall. I sold half of my HDís on eBay in a few quick panic auctions. Then I started thinking why not just cash out on all. So I sold the rest individually and made some good money, $13-$20 per disc.

Bought a PS3 for $300 using the Sony Style application (I needed a new credit card anyway, so good timing) used the HD money to start building a Blu collection, before the PS3 even arrived to me. That was also the week I believe Amazon ran a great BOGO. I gave the A2 to my parents for up-converting, since they will probably never get into buying High-def movies.

I wanted HD to win, but after awhile I just wanted 1 format for High Def. As a collector itís all about the movies, and I do not want streaming media, HD downloads, etc.

So here I am with a PS3, 360 gone (cause didnít need 2 system for mostly the same games) and a blu-ray collection. A friends said (for you comic fans) itís like Superboy Prime punched my collection.
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Old 02-19-08, 10:29 AM
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I must have gotten in around the same time as BuckNaked (August 2007), when I got the HD-A2, The Departed, Happy Feet and 300 all for like $180 from Amazon. I was feeling pretty good about getting into HD-DVD at that point, and bought about 15-20 titles over the next few months, and really enjoyed what HD-DVD had to offer. By that point, I did not truly feel like an early adopter, considering what other people had paid for some of the earlier HD-DVD players, and even players like the HD-A2 just months earlier.

Then around black friday, Best Buy was clearing out HD-A2s for $99, and I got the last one in my area, along with 3 more free HD-DVDs from BB on the spot. Again, I was feeling pretty good about it.

Fast forward to a couple of weeks ago, when the handwriting was clearly on the wall, and I bought a refurbed HD-XA2 for under $250 from Overstock. This was not so much to continue my HD-DVD purchasing, but I have several hundred DVDs, and it made sense to acquire the best upconverter around (and one of the best DVD players period), for a very low price.

So that's my story. Spent about $500 total on 3 players, one of which is a beast (the XA2). Spent some money on HD-DVDs, but not a ton. Add in the 10 free HD-DVDs from Toshiba, and although this was all in vain, I still have 3 excellent players, good upconverting for DVD (the best around with the XA2), some nice HD-DVDs, and I'll be ready to jump into BD when the prices are low enough to be something of an impulse purchase. No huge regrets here.
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Old 02-19-08, 10:34 AM
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Bought 18 Blu-ray movies during the B1G1 sale at Amazon last month, got my ps3 earlier this month and now i am glad I went Blu.
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Old 02-19-08, 10:43 AM
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Late July 2007: Amazon.com deal for an A2 w/ 3 movies + 5 via mail-in for $200-ish. Bought. Joined NetFlix.
August 2007: Received said unit. Love it.
November 2007: Received mail-in movies.

Late December 2007: Buy PS3.
Early Jan '08: Received PS3.

Jan - Feb '08: Watched movies, played video games, had a jolly good time.

Own: around 20 HD-DVDs, 6 Blus.

Overall Consensus: Didn't spend too terribly much and got to watch some quality movies with amazing clarity. And will hopefully continue to do so.

Cost breakdown:
HD DVD:
Toshiba HD-A2 Player: $210
The Big Lebowski: Free (w/ Player)
300: Free (w/ Player)
Shaun of the Dead: Free (w/ Player)
Galapagos: $14.96
Batman Begins: $14.96
The Shining: $14.96
The Last Samurai: $14.96
Casablanca: Free
Apollo 13: Free
Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow: Free
We Were Soldiers: Free
Blazing Saddles: Free
Hot Fuzz: $29.99
Blade Runner: $34.99
The Kingdom: Free (B2G1 w/ BR and PL)
Pan's Labyrinth: $31.99
The Bourne Ultimatum: $29.99
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix: Free (B1G1 w/ Bourne)
Transformers: $29.99
Elizabeth: $19.99
-------------------------------------------------
About $450 after tax.

Blu-Ray:
Playstation 3 (60gb, Refurbished): $410 (after shipping, tax, insurance, extended warranty. )
Ratatouille: $24.99
PotC3: Free (w/ Ratatouille)
Cars: $24.99
Casino Royale: Free (w/ Cars)
Hellboy: $14
Paprika: $19
-------------------------------------------------
About $500 with taxes.

So my "format war" results thus far: $950 for a PS3, HD-A2, and 26 movies. The best part being? A lot of my HD DVDs are not yet available on Blu and won't be (likely) for quite some time. I really need to pick up The Thing. So I got out for less than $1k (with a bulk going to the Blu-ray side, that said I use the PS3 more as a gaming unit anyhow). No complaints and I really love my A2 as an upscaling unit as well as it's current library - which will likely top out with 21 titles for me (unless There Will Be Blood shows up).

Last edited by RichC2; 02-19-08 at 11:11 AM.
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Old 02-19-08, 10:49 AM
  #23  
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I had never intended to go into HDM as early as I did, but I have to thank Toshiba for giving me the push, which in turn led to a large upgrade of my home theater. It was May and Toshiba was running their instant rebate promotion. I bought from Amazon for $230 or so, plus combined it with the recently released Matrix box set to get two free movies (ended up choosing King Kong and Batman Begins). There was a bit of symmetry to gettting the Matrix as my first High Def movie, as it was the first movie I ordered on DVD (along with Lock, Stock, and Two Smoking Barrels) in August of 1999 (before I even had a DVD player. And The Matrix wasn't even released yet).

As I looked at my set-up I decided I could use an upgrade elsewhere. A new Denon receiver to play lossless tracks was purchased to replace my 8 year old receiver. I also decided that I wanted all movies on High Def, so I bought a PS3 as well to replace the PS2 I had. I was sold on the PS3 being a fabulous machine. A bevy of HDM followed. At first it was pretty even between Blu-Ray and HD DVD. But I bought almost all the WB and Paramount titles I could on Blu-Ray (save for exclusives or where the HD DVD was better) since it always seemed to be the inevitable conclusion. I gladly gobbled up new releases on both formats and am overall very happy with my purchases.

I suppose I could have waited or could have bought just Blu-Ray, but I've enjoyed the various releases as they've come and I'm happy to take advantage of the various deals. I guess my HD DVD shelf won't grow very much anymore, but I'm happy with the collection I got and am suprised it remains about 40% of my total HDM discs, despite buying most dual format titles in Blu. I ended up with a lot of Universal stuff, a few imports, a few Warner exclusives, and a few situations where the HD DVD just offered more.
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Old 02-19-08, 11:14 AM
  #24  
Dan
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My memory is a bit fuzzy, but this is how I remember it...
Way back in March '06, I got transferred within my company from one store to another in the same city. At that time, our database got updated with the first title available in HDM... Chronos. Both formats. Obviously, that one got delayed a bit, but it was there, so I pre-ordered it on both formats. I remember thinking "I don't actually WANT the HD DVD, but it'll be cool to own a piece of history." A few weeks later, I managed to attend the Toshiba showcase that rolled through town (all attendees got a free DVD player and one lucky person got the HD-A1!). I was still a little skeptical at first, commenting to my girlfriend that Blu-ray had a few advantages. But then they showed the Batman Begins trailer on two screens: one Upconverted from SD, one in HD. We were blown away. The HD-A1 and HD-XA1 were released a couple weeks later, and although I desperately wanted one, I simply couldn't afford it based on my salary.

As titles started to come out, I designated myself to be in charge of the "High Def" section of our store. I made signs indicating the pro's and con's of each format. Our company sent out some literature explaining the two formats, but it was HEAVILY biased toward Blu-ray, so I refused to hand them out to customers. I remember having a conversation with the District Manager at the time, telling him that Blu-ray was doomed. To be fair, he didn't have all of his facts straight either, telling me that Universal, the biggest company, was Blu-ray exclusive.

When "Kiss Kiss Bang Bang" came out on HD DVD, I bought in. It was a combo disc, so I could watch it, and I already knew I loved the movie (saw it at TIFF the year before). I paid $31.50 CAD for it, and that was a "deal".

August '06, I managed to get a new job in an entirely different industry. They pay was much better, so the first 'toy' I wanted to buy myself was the HD-A1, but up here in Canada, you couldn't really find it for less than $699. One weekend, all the local electronics retailers had their massive sales. Bored, I went to Soundsaround and saw that they had a 61" DLP paired with the A1 for a pretty damn good price. Unfortunately, I wasn't interested in the DLP as I was content with my 34" wide CRT from Toshiba. I asked if they could sell me the player by itself, but they weren't allowed until the sale was over, but they told me their regular price was $499. That was a savings of $200! I went back to the store on the following Tuesday (September '06 now) and the price had gone up to $549, and they refused to match their previous price. I reluctantly bought it and headed home. Upgraded firmware to 2.0 (yay TrueHD 5.1!)

February '07, I started to get annoyed with my 34" CRT. I sold it for $500 and went shopping. I initially picked up a 42" Toshiba Regza (bundled with an A2), but when I brought it home, I was disgusted with the horrible black levels. I knew LCDs were bad for that, but not THAT bad. I brought it back the next day, and picked up the 56" Samsung DLP.

February '08. I recently just finished building my HTPC and the only thing remaining was a Combo HD DVD & Blu-ray drive. It was actually a pretty tough decision, only because I had been very pro-HD DVD, and it would mean I'd effectively be retiring my HD-A1, which had treated me very well. But, of course, I remembered... I'm a fan of movies, not formats. I wanted to have the ability to watch everything. I even bought a Laserdisc player recently just so I could get a few titles that either weren't on DVD, or were superior to the DVD version. Anyway, after getting a few kinks worked out, I was ready to "test" Blu-ray. I've watched 5 different titles, and I'm very happy with what I've seen and heard. I don't have that "personal" attachment I have to HD DVD, but Blu-ray is more than sufficient. I think I'm very happy that I decided to go the "HTPC" route, because my discs load very fast, and the profile nonsense won't affect me after PowerDVD issues an update to 2.0. HD DVD playback on PowerDVD is also pretty flawless. I may be crazy, but so far, the PQ on HD DVDs looks better on my HTPC than on the A1.

February 19, 2008: Toshiba officially drops HD DVD. A sad day, for sure. It's been a fun ride, and I'm still going to enjoy all 122 of my HD DVDs (123 when I buy American Gangster today... if I can find it locally...). My only hope is that the studios keep pushing the envelope for content and features on Blu-ray. I'm going to be a lot more selective with what I purchase, as opposed to what I rent, but that's because I admittedly went "overboard" with some of my HD DVD purchases. I have a LOT of titles I haven't watched yet (I did finally watch Phantom of the Opera... never again...), but I am a sucker for new releases.

We'll see what happens.


Anyway, that's my story
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Old 02-19-08, 11:37 AM
  #25  
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Join Date: May 2007
Location: Atlanta, GA
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Got my a3 in Nov. for $200 with 10 free movies. No regrets whatsoever. I will continue to use all of them, and I'm not rebuying unless something substantially better comes out. All this lossless, DD+, etc. stuff ain't gonna make me buy Bourne Supremacy on BD. If another player drops under $50, I'll buy a second as a back-up.

That said, BD has some great things going for it, I only hope they will get competitive with pricing or they'll be gone too. HD DVD had the right idea with the player prices, I only hope BD does the same.

RIP HD DVD.
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