The High-Definition DVD Format Wars

Gene Steinberg

Forum Super Hero
Staff member
In the 1970s and 1980s, Beta and VHS fought for supremacy. People on the wrong side of the battle were left with expensive tape decks for which movies were no longer being released.

While the new high-definition DVD formats are capable of delivering gorgeous pictures, with lots and lots of detail and brilliant colors, the consumer electronics industry can't figure out how to settle on a single format.

My feeling is that it's just not worth buying either HD-DVD or Blue-ray until the manufacturers can figure out which one they will support. Do you really want another expensive door stop?
 

RonCollins

Technology Novice
VHS eventually won because they delivered longer recording times. I have The War of the Worlds (1953 version, several orders of magnitude better than Tommy's version in my opinion)on Beta1. My father bought it in 76 or 77. I digress...

Without RCA jumping in with a 4 head VCR and Sony screwing up with the Bet1 and Beta2 Fiasco (dont get my Dad started about that) there probably would not have been a clear winner.

Either there needs to be a clear technological advantage that the average consumer can quickly grasp or there has to be a very big price difference for not much quality degredation. I doubt that will happen and it will most likely become a class dependant puchase. "Oh, Johnny's family could only afford SDHP-DVD (SuperDuperHighPerformance) but we have Bue Ray Ubber Platinum Edition" or whatever.
 

Gene Steinberg

Forum Super Hero
Staff member
To be sure, upconverted DVDs look quite good, and may, in fact, be close enough to Blu-Ray not to represent a significant difference for some -- certainly not enough to embrace a new format. Unless the new drives get real, real cheap. Maybe that'll happen over the Christmas holidays, particularly if the economy is still sputtering.
 


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