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Old 05-04-11, 05:33 AM   #1
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A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

Let me start by saying I'm a nut who collects failed formats. I have every CED videodisc title released, a large collection of 8-track tapes, and when HD-DVD lost the format war I started grabbing all the cheap discs I could find. I had 2 players and a large collection even before I had an HDTV to watch them on (finally got one last year.) I currently have FOUR players (though one just got bricked in an attempt to upgrade the firmware to see if it would handle these bad discs better, and my HD-A1 is putting out 'sparklies' on the picture through its HDMI output) and almost every HD-DVD title released in the US, including every one from Universal and almost all the major ones from the major studios (all the ones I have were bought still-sealed and stored and handled properly). Suffice it to say, it's going to take me a couple decades to watch them all. I've watched maybe 25 of them so far, with no problems til recently.

I recently started watching the Harry Potter movies in order since I got the latest one on Blu-Ray- the first 5 were on HD-DVD and I have both the individual releases and the box set. I started watching the individual disc of the first movie, and it stuttered and froze up an hour into it. I checked the disc on a total of FOUR different players, and the problem was definitely with the disc. So I watch the first movie from the box set instead, and it's fine, but then the second movie from the box set freezes up! I switch to my individual disc of the same movie, and it's ALSO defective, freezing up in a different part!

In the end, I went through THREE defective copies of "Chamber of Secrets" before getting one that plays all the way through. Just watched the 3rd movie and no problems, but I've spot-checked a few other HD-DVDs and it appears there were a LOT of defects over at Warner Manufacturing (which has since been sold off and become Cinram.) I checked a few discs chapter-skipping through them, since the bad discs I'd run into so far would not let you skip past the chapter where the defect was- the time counter keeps counting, but it holds a still frame from the last chapter you were on. So far I've found FOUR additional titles that are defective (Superman, Training Day, The Fugitive, and Swordfish- I'd heard of bad copies of Superman already but the other 3 were just pulled randomly.)

I guess I'm going to have to check all my HD-DVDs now so any more bad ones can still be replaced easily, rather than wait til I have time to watch them all and then discover they're defective. I've heard Warner has been replacing defective HD-DVDs with Blu-Ray copies, so I'm going to complain to them tomorrow but still replace the HD-DVDs since I'm an obsessive collector. I have to say this is VERY pathetic that such a large number of discs turned out defective. I have yet to run into a defective Blu-Ray disc, and I've had less than five defective standard DVDs out of the several hundred I've bought (again, all brand-new, never used.)

Universal got a decent amount of bad press for their defective DVDs (I'm wary of their HD-DVDs too as most of those were also made by Technicolor in Mexico, but so far I've been lucky with those) but I haven't heard much about Warner's HD-DVDs. I'm wondering how others have fared with these, and if maybe this was why Warner decided to drop the format in the end? I'm pretty angry right now about all these bad discs, but I'd be extremely furious if I'd bought them at full price and just now got around to watching them!
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Old 05-04-11, 06:51 AM   #2
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

I haven't had a single problem. Recently had the father-in-law staying over and we watched a bunch.
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Old 05-04-11, 12:57 PM   #3
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

Even though you tested these discs on multiple players, I honestly think this is more likely a hardware problem than a disc problem. Toshiba's players were extremely buggy, which was a huge downfall of the format.
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Old 05-04-11, 03:25 PM   #4
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

I have that same problem with some of my Blu-rays, the picture will freeze but the timer keeps going. I did have to replace one of my A35's which was defective but for the most part my HD DVD's have been problem free
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Old 05-04-11, 04:00 PM   #5
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

Quote:
Even though you tested these discs on multiple players, I honestly think this is more likely a hardware problem than a disc problem. Toshiba's players were extremely buggy, which was a huge downfall of the format.
How do I fix it then? My main player is an A30 with firmware 4.0, modified to think it's an A35 (won't bitstream the HD audio formats, but has most of its benefits other than that, plus it's region-free.) I also have an A3 with 4.0 firmware, and just upgraded my A1 (it's the RCA player but inside it's the same) to firmware 4.0- that still has trouble with the bad discs I've run into, but it's also having some HDMI connectivity problems I've never seen on any other device. I had an A2 also, but that just got bricked when I tried upgrading its firmware to 4.0! I have an A20 on the way from an Ebay seller to replace that one, so I can at least use the dead player's drive with that one should it break. I've got a BH200 too (only because I got it very cheap) but that one's glitchier than the Toshibas and I hate how it stretches 4x3 content. Anyways, none of these would play the discs in question without locking up.

Interestingly, I have one regular DVD that had problems on my older players, and has the same problem on my Sony Blu-Ray player but the A30 plays that disc with no issues.

If I were just an 'average consumer' and not collecting the format itself, I would've given up on HD-DVD by now. When it died it was a great way to get hi-def movies cheap, but with so many of them failing it hardly seems worth it.
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Old 05-04-11, 07:03 PM   #6
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

Found one more- Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. Damn thing won't even load in any player. Running a few more right now while I do homework.
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Old 05-04-11, 09:49 PM   #7
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

I haven't had any trouble with any of my HD-DVDs. I just watched Flags of our Fathers about two months ago and Eternal Sunshine a bit before that.

I've got an HD-XA2 though. It's still my main DVD player (the wife has a tendency to use the PS3 instead because it's faster, though). It's stock except I did the region-free modification to it. I got it refurbed for cheap some years ago...

Haha...I googled it and found the original FW deal thread I posted in...classic! http://www.fatwallet.com/forums/hot-deals/805340/
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Old 05-05-11, 12:24 AM   #8
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

Did you get the newest firmware for the Bh200 from march 2010. I was having good luck playing most on that.
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Old 05-05-11, 09:10 AM   #9
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

Picked up two new Toshiba A3's when the format went under and they both don't work already. One stopped recognizing HD-DVD's a long time ago and when I went to watch Notting Hill the other day the second one no longer recognizes the remote control signals. I replaced most of my discs with the BD counterpart now, but it's still a bit annoying especially since I didn't use them that often. Won't bother trying to pick up used players.
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Old 05-05-11, 02:06 PM   #10
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

I haven't watched one of my HD DVDs in a while, but I haven't had any issues aside from those associated with some of the combo titles.
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Old 05-05-11, 02:09 PM   #11
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

My 360 add-on is still working
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Old 05-05-11, 02:15 PM   #12
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

I bought an HDA2 back in '07 and it has never failed me. I only have around 25 HDDVDs though. One problem I have noticed is that the HDMI connection isn't consistant anymore. I have to use component.
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Old 05-05-11, 11:31 PM   #13
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

I have a Toshiba A2 machine with the last 4.0 firmware on it I had a couple of problems with King Kong freezing on me when it was brand new out of the shrink wrap. I wiped it clean and it played fine but froze in a different spot.

The combo discs are sometimes iffy. A Land of the Dead disc has a stange wave running through the surface of the disc that affected the playback. I've seen this on regular DVDs but they never had a problem.

I know scratches are very critical to these discs much more than scratches to DVD. The Blu-ray anti-scratch coating seems to work pretty well as I haven't had a problem yet.

I know when plants were pressing Blu-ray discs they would average 35-40% failure rate when they went through quality control. I don't know if it's still that high.

Since I paid so little for my HD DVD player and discs, I can't really complaint.
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Old 05-06-11, 02:38 AM   #14
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

It's hard to tell by appearance how a disc is going to play- when I got The Sopranos on HD-DVD I watched the first disc right away because it had that clouded look to it, but it plays perfectly.

Checked 5 more Warner discs today, no defects found (knock on wood). I have new-old-stock replacements for the bad ones coming from Amazon which I'll watch as soon as they get here, and will contact Warner to see if they can give me Blu-Rays for exchange of the defective discs (because when you're an obsessive collector, you can never have the same movie in too many different formats!)
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Old 05-08-11, 03:33 AM   #15
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

Spent almost all day today checking discs (again, on 2 machines) Latest casualties are:

Blood Diamond (I had TWO brand-new copies and BOTH freeze up at the beginning of the movie!)
The Good Shepherd- HD side won't play at all- first problem I've had with a Universal combo disc and only non-Warner title that's given me problems
Blade Runner disc 1 (Final Cut)
Alexander Revisited (BOTH discs! They both start glitching about 25 minutes in then eventually freeze!)
Viva Las Vegas- won't load at all
Robin Hood
Purple Rain
The Wild Bunch (last 3 glitch about an hour into the movie then freeze)

Been playing phone tag with someone at Warner- will be home Monday so hopefully will be able to reach them then. Dead format or not, this is pretty disgraceful.
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Old 05-09-11, 07:29 PM   #16
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

Got another copy of Willy Wonka today (still sealed) and it glitches and freezes about 14 minutes in. I called Warner and they had me send an email of all the defective discs I have, hopefully they'll at least replace them with Blu-Rays.
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Old 05-09-11, 08:13 PM   #17
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

Does anyone have a copy of the HD-DVD slipcover for "The 40-Year-Old Virgin" in at least very good condition that they'd be willing to sell me? Sorry to go off-topic, but this was the newest HD-DVD-related thread I could find.
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Old 05-09-11, 08:37 PM   #18
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

I got that sealed with no slipcover from an Amazon seller- since the damn slipcover has no shrinkwrap I don't know if my copy ever had one or not. I REALLY hate that practice- only that and American Gangster were released that way (my American Gangster has the slipcover, since I figured it'd be rare I bought that in a store and carefully took the price tag off- normally I wouldn't have bought it like that.)
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Old 05-09-11, 09:01 PM   #19
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh Z View Post
Even though you tested these discs on multiple players, I honestly think this is more likely a hardware problem than a disc problem. Toshiba's players were extremely buggy, which was a huge downfall of the format.
there would be many who would disagree with you on that( myself included).
Never once had any issue with any of my Toshiba Players and I had several.
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Old 05-09-11, 09:04 PM   #20
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

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Does anyone have a copy of the HD-DVD slipcover for "The 40-Year-Old Virgin" in at least very good condition that they'd be willing to sell me? Sorry to go off-topic, but this was the newest HD-DVD-related thread I could find.
I have one still, even when i sold off or traded all my HD DVDs i kept the slipcovers as I like getting them signed at work when possible.
I never got this one signed and its still in mint condition, You could simply have it, I dont need to sell it.
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Old 05-09-11, 09:07 PM   #21
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

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Originally Posted by Alan Smithee View Post
I got that sealed with no slipcover from an Amazon seller- since the damn slipcover has no shrinkwrap I don't know if my copy ever had one or not. I REALLY hate that practice- only that and American Gangster were released that way (my American Gangster has the slipcover, since I figured it'd be rare I bought that in a store and carefully took the price tag off- normally I wouldn't have bought it like that.)
40 Year Old and American Gangster slips are very rare. 40 YO only had maybe 1-1,500 slips made, and some stores just tossed them because they wouldn't fit in security cases.

American Gangster is even rare since it was released a few days a(weeks?) after HD DVD was dead so not every store carried the title and/or just didn't bother putting them out.

I, of course, have both
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Old 05-09-11, 09:08 PM   #22
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

All my HD DVDs have played fine, but honestly, it's been a while since I've touched a Warner one. Maybe I'll pop a few in the BH200 later this week and give them a check.
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Old 05-09-11, 09:34 PM   #23
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

Quote:
Originally Posted by AmityBoatTours View Post
I have one still, even when i sold off or traded all my HD DVDs i kept the slipcovers as I like getting them signed at work when possible.
I never got this one signed and its still in mint condition, You could simply have it, I dont need to sell it.
Wow, thanks man. I just sent you a PM.
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Old 05-10-11, 12:56 AM   #24
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

Quote:
and some stores just tossed them
Yet ANOTHER reason why I hate this packaging trend- EVERYTHING should be shrinkwrapped so none of it can be thrown out or have price tags and crap stuck on them! (As I've said in other threads, I don't buy anything used because I want my stuff to be in the best possible condition, so why would I pay full price for something with a price tag stuck on it?) The "40 Year Old Virgin" slipcover was really cool too.

A defective Warner disc may have killed my BH200 BTW- a friend got a copy of "The Cowboys" which would not play on his Toshiba A3, so he just gave it to me. It wouldn't play on my Toshibas either, but the LG could play the FBI warning and then got stuck. After that, it now gets stuck after the opening clip on EVERY HD-DVD I've tried on it. Not too bummed about that though as it stretches standard-def 4x3 content and is thus useless to me- it still plays Blu-Rays (which don't get stretched) so I'll use it if I ever get an out-of-region disc and haven't found a better all-region Blu player by then.
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Old 05-10-11, 09:26 AM   #25
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Re: A LOT of my HD-DVDs are defective!

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Originally Posted by Alan Smithee View Post
Yet ANOTHER reason why I hate this packaging trend- EVERYTHING should be shrinkwrapped so none of it can be thrown out or have price tags and crap stuck on them! (As I've said in other threads, I don't buy anything used because I want my stuff to be in the best possible condition, so why would I pay full price for something with a price tag stuck on it?) The "40 Year Old Virgin" slipcover was really cool too.

A defective Warner disc may have killed my BH200 BTW- a friend got a copy of "The Cowboys" which would not play on his Toshiba A3, so he just gave it to me. It wouldn't play on my Toshibas either, but the LG could play the FBI warning and then got stuck. After that, it now gets stuck after the opening clip on EVERY HD-DVD I've tried on it. Not too bummed about that though as it stretches standard-def 4x3 content and is thus useless to me- it still plays Blu-Rays (which don't get stretched) so I'll use it if I ever get an out-of-region disc and haven't found a better all-region Blu player by then.
Slip Covers are there to grab the attention of a consumer. Shrinkwrapping them would take away the very reason they were created.
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