Re: Throwaway DVD Question

Discussion in 'DVD Video' started by Scot Gardner, Sep 1, 2003.

  1. Scot Gardner

    Scot Gardner Guest

    "keved" <> wrote in message
    news:BB778A59.1C6A7%...

    <<Well besides the environmental issue, there's also the issue that it
    is likely that many of these titles will be exclusive to throw-away
    versions. There's a hard core base of DVD fanatics who would rank
    "ownership" of the movie in a permanent high quality media format pretty
    high on the list for why they bought into DVD. Now they're looking at a
    possible situation where they can no longer own movies.>>


    The creation of a way to prevent people from "owning" a movie was the
    ultimate DIVX objective and it is also the objective of the throwaway
    DVD. If owning a movie is defined as having the ability to play it over
    and over, without incurring additional cost, then we all own every DVD
    in our collections. Some movie studios have a problem with this and they
    will go to great lengths to invent a system which prevents the repeated
    no-charge viewing of their titles. Disney is a perfect example of this
    type of thinking: "What to do, what to do? If we release _Snow White_ on
    LaserDisc and/or DVD, people will watch it over and over without
    additional charge and some people will copy it. But if we don't release
    it on LaserDisc and/or DVD, we will lose millions of dollars. There must
    be a way to get people to pay each time they view our movies."

    The creation of exclusive titles was the original DIVX strategy. Having
    titles which were exclusive to the DIVX proprietary, digital disk format
    was an essential factor in getting people to purchase overpriced DIVX
    players and disks and pay additional money for extended play capability
    of selected DIVX titles. Now that DIVX Central has gone out of business,
    all DIVX disks have become throwaway media because they are all
    unplayable. The only difference now is that while DIVX disks required a
    special DIVX player, the proposed self-destructing, throwaway DVD format
    will be playable on regular DVD players.

    The danger which is inherent in any time-bomb movie media is that the
    format can easily become the exclusive distribution channel for some
    titles. Unlike throwaway DVD, DIVX was designed to ultimately replace
    DVD. Fox and Disney were adamant DIVX supporters and several exclusive
    DIVX titles from these two studios were being pressed when DIVX
    announced that it was going out of business. Disney's _Dumbo_ and _Roger
    Rabbit_ were released on DIVX a week after it was announced that DIVX
    was a total failure.

    The ONE advantage that DIVX disks had over the proposed,
    self-destructing, throwaway DVD format is that all DIVX disks could be
    played over and over again -- for a price. Repeat playback will not be
    an option with throwaway DVDs. If George Lucas decides to release Star
    Wars IV, V and VI exclusively on throwaway DVD, those who desire repeat
    viewing will need to buy multiple copies. Some people have advocated
    making copies of the throwaway DVDs, but copying these disks may not be
    easy, because they are going to be loaded with anti-copy mechanisms.

    DIVX was introduced as a pay-per-view disk system, but Circuit City's
    insidious DIVX proprietary, digital disk format was a blatant attempt to
    ultimately destroy DVD. The original plan included a sell-through
    "DivxGold" disk which would be playable only on DIVX players which were
    connected by a telephone line to DIVX Central. Unlike DIVX rental disks
    and "upgraded" DIVX Silver disks, the DivxGold disk would not have any
    playback time restrictions.

    Fortunately, no DivxGold disks were ever produced. Blockbuster DIVX
    proprietary, digital disk format titles, from Fox and Disney, could very
    well have brought an end to DVD. Fortunately, even Circuit City's
    full-screen, pan and scan DIVX buyers were smart enough to realize that
    DIVX was a total rip off. After only 11 months, DIVX was declared a
    total failure. The DIVX fiasco became the largest financial failure in
    home electronics history. What a shame.

    Here is a post that I made in November, 2001:

    There are often questions as to whether or not the fabled DIVX Gold disk
    actually ever existed. I have quoted the before and after statements
    from the now-dead, official DIVX website. Digital Video Express was
    rumored to be preparing a DIVX Golden fleecing, starting with certain
    Disney releases.

    By January 21, 1999, Digital Video Express had removed references to
    DIVX Gold disks from its website. At one time, the official DIVX website
    had quite a lot to say about DIVX Gold disks. But, now DVE (Digital
    Video Express, DIVX' parent company) admits to having only two types of
    DIVX disks:

    What are the different types of Divx discs?

    There are two types of Divx discs: 1) the "rental" disc, sold at retail
    for a suggested price of about $4.50 (the disc includes a two-day
    viewing period); 2) DivxSilver discs, which started as "rental" discs
    but had since been converted for a one-time-fee ($15-$20) by the disc
    owner to unlimited play on players registered to his or her account.

    We've all heard of the DIVX disc that is bought/rented. Many have become
    acquainted with the DIVX Silver disc which allows unlimited viewing of
    certain selected non-exclusive titles. But, there is a third lesser
    known sibling in this unholy trio known as the Gold disc. The Gold disc
    is something special that the DIVX conspiracy is saving for later.

    Q. "What is the difference between basic DVD and DivxGold?"

    A. "While a basic DVD disc may offer such features as widescreen,
    multiple language tracks or subtitles, a DivxGold disc does not. Studios
    may decide to release particular titles on DivxGold because it provides
    greater anti-piracy protections. It is unlikely that a single title
    would be available on basic DVD and DivxGold...DivxGold discs will be
    priced similar to basic DVD discs. All pricing and availability is set
    by the studio and is subject to change."

    The so called "greater anti-piracy protections" of DivxGold are not the
    primary concern.The success of DIVX depends upon its ability to compel
    movie studios to grant DIVX the EXCLUSIVE RIGHTS to titles. No one, not
    even someone who owns a DIVX player, would prefer a crippled DivxGold
    disk over the same title, similarly priced, on open DVD. Once again, the
    DIVX FAQ page supplies the main reason for choosing open DVD over
    DivxGold:

    Q. "Can I play DivxGold discs without setting up an account or
    connecting my Divx player to a phone line?"

    A. "All Divx-enhanced players must be registered with the Divx Customer
    Satisfaction Center prior to playing any Divx movies. Part of that
    registration includes providing a credit or debit card number for future
    billing, even if no billing ever takes place."

    Obviously, a DivxGold disc must be an EXCLUSIVE title or it will not
    sell.

    While open DVD is able to get by with one "type" of disc, DIVX needed
    three.

    Q. What are the different types of Divx discs?

    A. There were three types of Divx discs:

    1) the "rental" disc, sold at retail for a suggested price of about
    $4.50 (the disc includes a two-day viewing period);

    2) DivxSilver discs, which started as "rental" discs but have since been
    converted for a one-time-fee by the disc owner to unlimited play on
    players registered to his or her account; and

    3) DivxGold discs, which are purchased much like a basic DVD at retail.
    DivxGold discs can be played an unlimited number of times without charge
    on any Divx player.

    Notice that Circuit City's CEO, Dick Sharp, mentioned DIVX Gold as a
    "sell-through" item in his forward looking statement:

    "If projections hold up, DIVX would earn a pretax profit (for Circuit
    City) of 70¢ per disc. At this point, says Sharp, DIVX transactions
    should account for 20% of home video rentals, or roughly 800 million
    transactions, which translates to $560 million in pretax profit. Added
    to that will be whatever profits DIVX earns (for Hollywood) from repeat
    plays, fees to convert rental discs to unlimited viewing, and sales of
    so called DIVX-GOLD sell-through discs. Hollywood will make the most
    from DIVX and will receive the largest cut from the sale of DIVX discs
    and the continual pay-per-view fees."

    QUOTE about the Huge Profitability of "Divx" for Circuit City/Divx
    Corporation. Dick Sharp President of Circuit City and "Divx" speaks to
    analysts on Wall Street about the profitability of "Divx" for their
    Company. October 1997
    Scot Gardner, Sep 1, 2003
    #1
    1. Advertising

  2. I guess we will all have to see what happens. I think you are being a bit
    paranoid without ever having seen the product or how it is marketed. I'm willing
    to take the companies word on things at this point and scream later if they
    don't live up to their promises. Ultimately the market will decide and quite
    frankly I'm beginning to focus my attention on HD. My DVD collection is at
    around 500 titles and I don't imagine I'll be buying nearly as many in the
    future anyway. They will be joining my Laserdisc collection one of these days
    and I'll probably start all over with HD! Ain't technology grand?

    "Scot Gardner" <> wrote in message
    news:20030901112335.849$...
    > "keved" <> wrote in message
    > news:BB778A59.1C6A7%...
    >
    > <<Well besides the environmental issue, there's also the issue that it
    > is likely that many of these titles will be exclusive to throw-away
    > versions. There's a hard core base of DVD fanatics who would rank
    > "ownership" of the movie in a permanent high quality media format pretty
    > high on the list for why they bought into DVD. Now they're looking at a
    > possible situation where they can no longer own movies.>>
    >
    >
    > The creation of a way to prevent people from "owning" a movie was the
    > ultimate DIVX objective and it is also the objective of the throwaway
    > DVD. If owning a movie is defined as having the ability to play it over
    > and over, without incurring additional cost, then we all own every DVD
    > in our collections. Some movie studios have a problem with this and they
    > will go to great lengths to invent a system which prevents the repeated
    > no-charge viewing of their titles. Disney is a perfect example of this
    > type of thinking: "What to do, what to do? If we release _Snow White_ on
    > LaserDisc and/or DVD, people will watch it over and over without
    > additional charge and some people will copy it. But if we don't release
    > it on LaserDisc and/or DVD, we will lose millions of dollars. There must
    > be a way to get people to pay each time they view our movies."
    >
    > The creation of exclusive titles was the original DIVX strategy. Having
    > titles which were exclusive to the DIVX proprietary, digital disk format
    > was an essential factor in getting people to purchase overpriced DIVX
    > players and disks and pay additional money for extended play capability
    > of selected DIVX titles. Now that DIVX Central has gone out of business,
    > all DIVX disks have become throwaway media because they are all
    > unplayable. The only difference now is that while DIVX disks required a
    > special DIVX player, the proposed self-destructing, throwaway DVD format
    > will be playable on regular DVD players.
    >
    > The danger which is inherent in any time-bomb movie media is that the
    > format can easily become the exclusive distribution channel for some
    > titles. Unlike throwaway DVD, DIVX was designed to ultimately replace
    > DVD. Fox and Disney were adamant DIVX supporters and several exclusive
    > DIVX titles from these two studios were being pressed when DIVX
    > announced that it was going out of business. Disney's _Dumbo_ and _Roger
    > Rabbit_ were released on DIVX a week after it was announced that DIVX
    > was a total failure.
    >
    > The ONE advantage that DIVX disks had over the proposed,
    > self-destructing, throwaway DVD format is that all DIVX disks could be
    > played over and over again -- for a price. Repeat playback will not be
    > an option with throwaway DVDs. If George Lucas decides to release Star
    > Wars IV, V and VI exclusively on throwaway DVD, those who desire repeat
    > viewing will need to buy multiple copies. Some people have advocated
    > making copies of the throwaway DVDs, but copying these disks may not be
    > easy, because they are going to be loaded with anti-copy mechanisms.
    >
    > DIVX was introduced as a pay-per-view disk system, but Circuit City's
    > insidious DIVX proprietary, digital disk format was a blatant attempt to
    > ultimately destroy DVD. The original plan included a sell-through
    > "DivxGold" disk which would be playable only on DIVX players which were
    > connected by a telephone line to DIVX Central. Unlike DIVX rental disks
    > and "upgraded" DIVX Silver disks, the DivxGold disk would not have any
    > playback time restrictions.
    >
    > Fortunately, no DivxGold disks were ever produced. Blockbuster DIVX
    > proprietary, digital disk format titles, from Fox and Disney, could very
    > well have brought an end to DVD. Fortunately, even Circuit City's
    > full-screen, pan and scan DIVX buyers were smart enough to realize that
    > DIVX was a total rip off. After only 11 months, DIVX was declared a
    > total failure. The DIVX fiasco became the largest financial failure in
    > home electronics history. What a shame.
    >
    > Here is a post that I made in November, 2001:
    >
    > There are often questions as to whether or not the fabled DIVX Gold disk
    > actually ever existed. I have quoted the before and after statements
    > from the now-dead, official DIVX website. Digital Video Express was
    > rumored to be preparing a DIVX Golden fleecing, starting with certain
    > Disney releases.
    >
    > By January 21, 1999, Digital Video Express had removed references to
    > DIVX Gold disks from its website. At one time, the official DIVX website
    > had quite a lot to say about DIVX Gold disks. But, now DVE (Digital
    > Video Express, DIVX' parent company) admits to having only two types of
    > DIVX disks:
    >
    > What are the different types of Divx discs?
    >
    > There are two types of Divx discs: 1) the "rental" disc, sold at retail
    > for a suggested price of about $4.50 (the disc includes a two-day
    > viewing period); 2) DivxSilver discs, which started as "rental" discs
    > but had since been converted for a one-time-fee ($15-$20) by the disc
    > owner to unlimited play on players registered to his or her account.
    >
    > We've all heard of the DIVX disc that is bought/rented. Many have become
    > acquainted with the DIVX Silver disc which allows unlimited viewing of
    > certain selected non-exclusive titles. But, there is a third lesser
    > known sibling in this unholy trio known as the Gold disc. The Gold disc
    > is something special that the DIVX conspiracy is saving for later.
    >
    > Q. "What is the difference between basic DVD and DivxGold?"
    >
    > A. "While a basic DVD disc may offer such features as widescreen,
    > multiple language tracks or subtitles, a DivxGold disc does not. Studios
    > may decide to release particular titles on DivxGold because it provides
    > greater anti-piracy protections. It is unlikely that a single title
    > would be available on basic DVD and DivxGold...DivxGold discs will be
    > priced similar to basic DVD discs. All pricing and availability is set
    > by the studio and is subject to change."
    >
    > The so called "greater anti-piracy protections" of DivxGold are not the
    > primary concern.The success of DIVX depends upon its ability to compel
    > movie studios to grant DIVX the EXCLUSIVE RIGHTS to titles. No one, not
    > even someone who owns a DIVX player, would prefer a crippled DivxGold
    > disk over the same title, similarly priced, on open DVD. Once again, the
    > DIVX FAQ page supplies the main reason for choosing open DVD over
    > DivxGold:
    >
    > Q. "Can I play DivxGold discs without setting up an account or
    > connecting my Divx player to a phone line?"
    >
    > A. "All Divx-enhanced players must be registered with the Divx Customer
    > Satisfaction Center prior to playing any Divx movies. Part of that
    > registration includes providing a credit or debit card number for future
    > billing, even if no billing ever takes place."
    >
    > Obviously, a DivxGold disc must be an EXCLUSIVE title or it will not
    > sell.
    >
    > While open DVD is able to get by with one "type" of disc, DIVX needed
    > three.
    >
    > Q. What are the different types of Divx discs?
    >
    > A. There were three types of Divx discs:
    >
    > 1) the "rental" disc, sold at retail for a suggested price of about
    > $4.50 (the disc includes a two-day viewing period);
    >
    > 2) DivxSilver discs, which started as "rental" discs but have since been
    > converted for a one-time-fee by the disc owner to unlimited play on
    > players registered to his or her account; and
    >
    > 3) DivxGold discs, which are purchased much like a basic DVD at retail.
    > DivxGold discs can be played an unlimited number of times without charge
    > on any Divx player.
    >
    > Notice that Circuit City's CEO, Dick Sharp, mentioned DIVX Gold as a
    > "sell-through" item in his forward looking statement:
    >
    > "If projections hold up, DIVX would earn a pretax profit (for Circuit
    > City) of 70¢ per disc. At this point, says Sharp, DIVX transactions
    > should account for 20% of home video rentals, or roughly 800 million
    > transactions, which translates to $560 million in pretax profit. Added
    > to that will be whatever profits DIVX earns (for Hollywood) from repeat
    > plays, fees to convert rental discs to unlimited viewing, and sales of
    > so called DIVX-GOLD sell-through discs. Hollywood will make the most
    > from DIVX and will receive the largest cut from the sale of DIVX discs
    > and the continual pay-per-view fees."
    >
    > QUOTE about the Huge Profitability of "Divx" for Circuit City/Divx
    > Corporation. Dick Sharp President of Circuit City and "Divx" speaks to
    > analysts on Wall Street about the profitability of "Divx" for their
    > Company. October 1997
    >
    >
    Charles Tomaras, Sep 1, 2003
    #2
    1. Advertising

  3. Scot Gardner

    Smaug69 Guest

    "Charles Tomaras" <> wrote in message news:<>...
    > I guess we will all have to see what happens. I think you are being a bit
    > paranoid without ever having seen the product or how it is marketed. I'm willing
    > to take the companies word on things at this point and scream later if they
    > don't live up to their promises. Ultimately the market will decide and quite
    > frankly I'm beginning to focus my attention on HD.


    So you're buying those D-VHS tapes? There is no other HD out there to
    focus on at this point.

    > My DVD collection is at
    > around 500 titles and I don't imagine I'll be buying nearly as many in the
    > future anyway. They will be joining my Laserdisc collection one of these days
    > and I'll probably start all over with HD! Ain't technology grand?


    You'll be waiting about 7-10 years before you see any of those HD-DVD
    movies.

    Smaug69
    Smaug69, Sep 1, 2003
    #3
  4. Scot Gardner

    keved Guest

    in article , Charles Tomaras at
    wrote on 9/1/03 8:44 AM:

    > I guess we will all have to see what happens. I think you are being a bit
    > paranoid without ever having seen the product or how it is marketed. I'm
    > willing
    > to take the companies word on things at this point and scream later if they
    > don't live up to their promises.


    Actually I have seen the product, and I do know how it's going to be
    marketed (as outlined in my first post). What companies word? Disney is
    not saying they don't want to exclusively release titles in disposable DVD
    format. Disney has a history of pulling titles from the market. Ask anyone
    in the industry and they'll tell you that it is in their best interest to do
    this, and they are *very* aware of this.

    > Ultimately the market will decide and quite
    > frankly I'm beginning to focus my attention on HD. My DVD collection is at
    > around 500 titles and I don't imagine I'll be buying nearly as many in the
    > future anyway. They will be joining my Laserdisc collection one of these days
    > and I'll probably start all over with HD! Ain't technology grand?


    Well unlike Laserdisc your existing DVD titles will play in any new HD-DVD
    player. Every prototype I've seen has been able to do this with the reps
    very clearly explaining that they saw backwards compatibility as a huge
    requirement. I suspect that less than 5% of my existing 1,000+ titles would
    be repurchased in HD...I already have a HD tv.
    keved, Sep 2, 2003
    #4
  5. Scot Gardner

    keved Guest

    Excellent post Scot! Thanks for pulling out all that relevant info about
    Divx. I lived through that, but didn't keep all that info handy...very
    useful, accurate, and informative to those who didn't experience it!
    [snip]

    > The ONE advantage that DIVX disks had over the proposed,
    > self-destructing, throwaway DVD format is that all DIVX disks could be
    > played over and over again -- for a price. Repeat playback will not be
    > an option with throwaway DVDs. If George Lucas decides to release Star
    > Wars IV, V and VI exclusively on throwaway DVD, those who desire repeat
    > viewing will need to buy multiple copies. Some people have advocated
    > making copies of the throwaway DVDs, but copying these disks may not be
    > easy, because they are going to be loaded with anti-copy mechanisms.


    The copy protection in Flexplay DVDs will be exactly the same as
    conventional DVDs. There's an irony that these disks will be owned by the
    customer and therefore legal to back up before they expire.

    [snip]

    > Judging from the huge number of posts, people are already having plenty
    > of difficulty copying regular DVDs. On the other hand, here's an article
    > which claims that there will be no difficulty in copying the new,
    > self-destructive, "ez-D" DVDs from Flexplay Technologies:


    I think most people are having problems *learning* how to copy DVDs, and
    that it has more to do with the issue involving dual-layer DVDs. The
    Flexplay DVDs are single-layer and thus much easier to produce bit-perfect
    back ups before they expire. Also the technology is getting easier. The
    latest software would make backing up one of these DVDs as simple as
    dragging the disk over to the application icon, clicking "start", and then
    dragging the folder it creates over to the burning software and clicking
    start.

    The hardware is improving and getting cheaper too. DVD burners have broken
    the $150 mark and disks are under $1. This is for 4x speed. 8x are just
    now coming out and of course they'll be getting even faster and cheaper. In
    a couple of years, I would expect to be able to copy a DVD in less than 5
    minutes for less than 50 cents with a burner that costs $50.
    keved, Sep 2, 2003
    #5
  6. "Smaug69" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > "Charles Tomaras" <> wrote in message

    news:<>...
    > > I guess we will all have to see what happens. I think you are being a bit
    > > paranoid without ever having seen the product or how it is marketed. I'm

    willing
    > > to take the companies word on things at this point and scream later if they
    > > don't live up to their promises. Ultimately the market will decide and quite
    > > frankly I'm beginning to focus my attention on HD.

    >
    > So you're buying those D-VHS tapes? There is no other HD out there to
    > focus on at this point.


    Actually I've just been watching HD movies via Direct TV. It's kinda taken the
    excitement out of purchasing DVD's for me.

    > > My DVD collection is at
    > > around 500 titles and I don't imagine I'll be buying nearly as many in the
    > > future anyway. They will be joining my Laserdisc collection one of these

    days
    > > and I'll probably start all over with HD! Ain't technology grand?

    >
    > You'll be waiting about 7-10 years before you see any of those HD-DVD
    > movies.


    I think HD DVD is closer than you might imagine. I'm pretty impressed with the
    quality I've seen from the Terminator WM9 HD DVD version and know for a fact
    there will be new DVD players supporting WM9 coming out this Fall. The fact that
    Microsoft, and I'm sure other companies soon, have been able to fit and entire
    HD resolution movie on a standard DVD bodes well for an HD standard that doesn't
    require blue lasers and extensive retooling for the hardware manufactures.
    Charles Tomaras, Sep 2, 2003
    #6
  7. "keved" <> wrote in message
    news:BB792DB9.1CAAC%...
    > in article , Charles Tomaras at
    > wrote on 9/1/03 8:44 AM:
    >
    > > I guess we will all have to see what happens. I think you are being a bit
    > > paranoid without ever having seen the product or how it is marketed. I'm
    > > willing
    > > to take the companies word on things at this point and scream later if they
    > > don't live up to their promises.

    >
    > Actually I have seen the product, and I do know how it's going to be
    > marketed (as outlined in my first post). What companies word? Disney is
    > not saying they don't want to exclusively release titles in disposable DVD
    > format. Disney has a history of pulling titles from the market. Ask anyone
    > in the industry and they'll tell you that it is in their best interest to do
    > this, and they are *very* aware of this.
    >
    > > Ultimately the market will decide and quite
    > > frankly I'm beginning to focus my attention on HD. My DVD collection is at
    > > around 500 titles and I don't imagine I'll be buying nearly as many in the
    > > future anyway. They will be joining my Laserdisc collection one of these

    days
    > > and I'll probably start all over with HD! Ain't technology grand?

    >
    > Well unlike Laserdisc your existing DVD titles will play in any new HD-DVD
    > player. Every prototype I've seen has been able to do this with the reps
    > very clearly explaining that they saw backwards compatibility as a huge
    > requirement. I suspect that less than 5% of my existing 1,000+ titles would
    > be repurchased in HD...I already have a HD tv.


    I doubt I'll be repurchasing many of mine either. I kinda went hog wild with DVD
    as it was really the first really watchable format that I could own. I couldn't
    stand VHS and found laserdisc only passable. I've really been enjoying watching
    HD stuff on Direct TV lately.

    I'm curious as to your involvement in the industry. I'm a sound mixer for film
    and video and see most of my new tech at the NAB and AES conventions every year.
    Which prototypes have you seen? Blue Laser stuff or conventional players that
    have been beefed up to handle newer advanced codecs like WMV and the like?
    Charles Tomaras, Sep 2, 2003
    #7
  8. "keved" <> wrote in message news:BB7931BB.1CAC3%>
    > I think most people are having problems *learning* how to copy DVDs, and
    > that it has more to do with the issue involving dual-layer DVDs. The
    > Flexplay DVDs are single-layer and thus much easier to produce bit-perfect
    > back ups before they expire.



    Even without the extras, it seems that the longer feature Flexplay discs will
    need some additional compression tweaking to fit everything on a 4.7gb disc.
    That's going to put them into the low-fi category for a lot of picky
    videophiles. I've compressed dual layer discs down to one DVD -R and the loss of
    quality is fairly apparent on the ones I've tried it on.
    Charles Tomaras, Sep 2, 2003
    #8
  9. Scot Gardner

    keved Guest

    in article , Charles Tomaras at
    wrote on 9/1/03 10:03 PM:

    >
    > "keved" <> wrote in message news:BB7931BB.1CAC3%>
    >> I think most people are having problems *learning* how to copy DVDs, and
    >> that it has more to do with the issue involving dual-layer DVDs. The
    >> Flexplay DVDs are single-layer and thus much easier to produce bit-perfect
    >> back ups before they expire.

    >
    >
    > Even without the extras, it seems that the longer feature Flexplay discs will
    > need some additional compression tweaking to fit everything on a 4.7gb disc.
    > That's going to put them into the low-fi category for a lot of picky
    > videophiles. I've compressed dual layer discs down to one DVD -R and the loss
    > of
    > quality is fairly apparent on the ones I've tried it on.


    I'm not sure I understand what you're saying. Flexplay discs will be single
    sided DVD-5 which hold 4.38GB or (4.7 billion bytes). This is the same as
    DVD-R. So even the longest Flexplay DVD disc will fit bit perfectly on a
    DVD-R. No need for further compression.

    Or are you saying the long titles on Flexplay will be horrendously
    compressed in order to fit? If so, yes, this will definitely be the case,
    along with very few if any extras.
    keved, Sep 2, 2003
    #9
  10. "keved" <> wrote in message
    news:BB797771.1CC1A%...
    > in article , Charles Tomaras at
    > wrote on 9/1/03 10:03 PM:
    >
    > >
    > > "keved" <> wrote in message

    news:BB7931BB.1CAC3%>
    > >> I think most people are having problems *learning* how to copy DVDs, and
    > >> that it has more to do with the issue involving dual-layer DVDs. The
    > >> Flexplay DVDs are single-layer and thus much easier to produce bit-perfect
    > >> back ups before they expire.

    > >
    > >
    > > Even without the extras, it seems that the longer feature Flexplay discs

    will
    > > need some additional compression tweaking to fit everything on a 4.7gb disc.
    > > That's going to put them into the low-fi category for a lot of picky
    > > videophiles. I've compressed dual layer discs down to one DVD -R and the

    loss
    > > of
    > > quality is fairly apparent on the ones I've tried it on.

    >
    > I'm not sure I understand what you're saying. Flexplay discs will be single
    > sided DVD-5 which hold 4.38GB or (4.7 billion bytes). This is the same as
    > DVD-R. So even the longest Flexplay DVD disc will fit bit perfectly on a
    > DVD-R. No need for further compression.
    >
    > Or are you saying the long titles on Flexplay will be horrendously
    > compressed in order to fit? If so, yes, this will definitely be the case,
    > along with very few if any extras.


    Yes, I'm saying the latter.
    Charles Tomaras, Sep 2, 2003
    #10
  11. Scot Gardner

    keved Guest


    >> Well unlike Laserdisc your existing DVD titles will play in any new HD-DVD
    >> player. Every prototype I've seen has been able to do this with the reps
    >> very clearly explaining that they saw backwards compatibility as a huge
    >> requirement. I suspect that less than 5% of my existing 1,000+ titles would
    >> be repurchased in HD...I already have a HD tv.

    >
    > I doubt I'll be repurchasing many of mine either. I kinda went hog wild with
    > DVD
    > as it was really the first really watchable format that I could own. I
    > couldn't
    > stand VHS and found laserdisc only passable. I've really been enjoying
    > watching
    > HD stuff on Direct TV lately.
    >
    > I'm curious as to your involvement in the industry. I'm a sound mixer for film
    > and video and see most of my new tech at the NAB and AES conventions every
    > year.
    > Which prototypes have you seen? Blue Laser stuff or conventional players that
    > have been beefed up to handle newer advanced codecs like WMV and the like?


    I'd rather not name names or identify myself. I have someone very close to
    me who was the head of video marketing for a major studio.

    I've worked in various capacities with the marketing departments of other
    studios and also worked for a media company doing product news and reviews.

    I've seen Blu-Ray from Sony as well as HD DVD prototypes from others. I'm
    definitely looking forward to it.

    I haven't seen any players/prototypes handling WMV9. I hope I never do!
    keved, Sep 2, 2003
    #11
  12. Scot Gardner

    Smaug69 Guest

    "Charles Tomaras" <> wrote in message news:<>...

    <snip>

    > Actually I've just been watching HD movies via Direct TV. It's kinda taken the
    > excitement out of purchasing DVD's for me.


    Ahh, so have you actually seen any of those films in their OAR? Or do
    they cut them all down to fit the 16:9 screen?

    <snip>

    > > You'll be waiting about 7-10 years before you see any of those HD-DVD
    > > movies.

    >
    > I think HD DVD is closer than you might imagine. I'm pretty impressed with the
    > quality I've seen from the Terminator WM9 HD DVD version


    You mean that experimental proprietary Windows media/codec?

    > and know for a fact
    > there will be new DVD players supporting WM9 coming out this Fall.


    Oh, so anyone that has a player now is screwed, eh?

    > The fact that
    > Microsoft, and I'm sure other companies soon, have been able to fit and entire
    > HD resolution movie


    1440x816 is the actual encoded resolution of that T2 WM9 version, from
    what I have heard about it, and that's not high definition, I'm
    afraid. And you still have to watch it on your PC monitor.

    > on a standard DVD bodes well for an HD standard that doesn't
    > require blue lasers and extensive retooling for the hardware manufactures.


    Regardless of any so-called "advances" of the technology, the industry
    will not undermine the golden egg that is DVD at this time. HD-DVD
    will not be showing up for quite some time. You can count on that.

    Smaug69
    Smaug69, Sep 2, 2003
    #12
  13. "keved" <> wrote in message
    news:BB79791A.1CC22%...
    >
    > I haven't seen any players/prototypes handling WMV9. I hope I never do!


    Windows Media 9 technologies are very good. I'd hope your assumed "anything
    Microsoft is bad" attitude won't keep you from acknowledging their successes.
    You may well see Windows Media as the digital projection format of choice for
    theaters in the future. The Landmark chain as already implemented it on a number
    of their screens and have plans to have it available on all of their 180 or so
    screens by year end. The results are impressive.
    Charles Tomaras, Sep 2, 2003
    #13
  14. "Smaug69" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > "Charles Tomaras" <> wrote in message

    news:<>...
    >
    > <snip>
    >
    > > Actually I've just been watching HD movies via Direct TV. It's kinda taken

    the
    > > excitement out of purchasing DVD's for me.

    >
    > Ahh, so have you actually seen any of those films in their OAR? Or do
    > they cut them all down to fit the 16:9 screen?


    HD Net has been presenting thier movies in OAR.

    >
    > > > You'll be waiting about 7-10 years before you see any of those HD-DVD
    > > > movies.

    > >
    > > I think HD DVD is closer than you might imagine. I'm pretty impressed with

    the
    > > quality I've seen from the Terminator WM9 HD DVD version

    >
    > You mean that experimental proprietary Windows media/codec?


    Windows Media Technology 9 series is available for anyone to liscense. It works
    quite well and I haven't seen anyone else doing a better job of effectively
    presenting HD resolution feature length movies on a standard DVD.


    >
    > > and know for a fact
    > > there will be new DVD players supporting WM9 coming out this Fall.

    >
    > Oh, so anyone that has a player now is screwed, eh?


    No, someone buying a player that will decode WMV will have an enhancement in the
    same way that some players will allow for the playback of MP3 audio and other
    codecs.

    I get it...from your perspective "anything Microsoft is bad."


    >
    > > The fact that
    > > Microsoft, and I'm sure other companies soon, have been able to fit and

    entire
    > > HD resolution movie

    >
    > 1440x816 is the actual encoded resolution of that T2 WM9 version, from
    > what I have heard about it, and that's not high definition, I'm
    > afraid. And you still have to watch it on your PC monitor.


    It's the finest picture I've ever seen come off of a DVD. I suppose you would be
    happier if no one tried to present anything new or improved with DVD technology?
    Or is it just the Microsoft thing again? Some of you folks seem to believe that
    with 60,000 employees MS is incapable of creating anything good....that's kinda
    near sighted in my book. Give them credit where credit is due.


    >
    > > on a standard DVD bodes well for an HD standard that doesn't
    > > require blue lasers and extensive retooling for the hardware manufactures.

    >
    > Regardless of any so-called "advances" of the technology, the industry
    > will not undermine the golden egg that is DVD at this time. HD-DVD
    > will not be showing up for quite some time. You can count on that.



    Thus spoke Smaug69 on September 2, 2003! :)
    Charles Tomaras, Sep 2, 2003
    #14
  15. "Smaug69" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    >
    > 1440x816 is the actual encoded resolution of that T2 WM9 version, from
    > what I have heard about it, and that's not high definition, I'm
    > afraid. And you still have to watch it on your PC monitor.


    How do you figure 1440 x 816 progressive isn't HD resolution?
    Charles Tomaras, Sep 2, 2003
    #15
  16. Scot Gardner

    keved Guest

    in article , Charles Tomaras at
    wrote on 9/2/03 7:37 AM:

    >
    > "keved" <> wrote in message
    > news:BB79791A.1CC22%...
    >>
    >> I haven't seen any players/prototypes handling WMV9. I hope I never do!

    >
    > Windows Media 9 technologies are very good. I'd hope your assumed "anything
    > Microsoft is bad" attitude won't keep you from acknowledging their successes.
    > You may well see Windows Media as the digital projection format of choice for
    > theaters in the future. The Landmark chain as already implemented it on a
    > number
    > of their screens and have plans to have it available on all of their 180 or so
    > screens by year end. The results are impressive.


    I actually use lots of Microsoft products. MS Office is best in class, and
    I was using Explorer for a long time before Safari came along. Likewise I
    use MS Entourage.

    However I don't want to see a proprietary technology, especially one that is
    controlled by Microsoft, take control over in this area. I also don't see
    WMV9 being that good of an idea for DVD players compared to other
    technologies.
    keved, Sep 2, 2003
    #16
  17. Scot Gardner

    keved Guest


    >>> and know for a fact
    >>> there will be new DVD players supporting WM9 coming out this Fall.

    >>
    >> Oh, so anyone that has a player now is screwed, eh?

    >
    > No, someone buying a player that will decode WMV will have an enhancement in
    > the
    > same way that some players will allow for the playback of MP3 audio and other
    > codecs.
    >
    > I get it...from your perspective "anything Microsoft is bad."


    You're wrong. Exisiting stand alone DVD players would not be able to play
    WM9. So someone who has a player now would be, well I wouldn't say screwed,
    but would need to buy a new player if they wanted to play WM9 titles.

    It takes significantly more processing power, so expect WM9 players would be
    significantly more expensive.

    Oh, you should also expect new and improved copy-protection on those titles.

    I wouldn't bet the farm on those players actually being available this year
    (if ever).


    >>> The fact that Microsoft, and I'm sure other companies soon, have been able
    >>> to fit and entire HD resolution movie on a standard DVD bodes well for an HD
    >>> standard that doesn't require blue lasers and extensive retooling for the
    >>> hardware manufactures.


    But it's (software) not standard DVD, it's only physically standard DVD.
    There still needs to be significant modification of the players in several
    ways. In the end this compares to standard DVD as: better video, but more
    expensive, no recording in this format unless it would be really expensive,
    and disk capacity remains the same.

    Is that really worth making the switch, when Blu-Ray offers even better
    video, recordability, larger disk capacity, and roughly the same price?

    >> Regardless of any so-called "advances" of the technology, the industry
    >> will not undermine the golden egg that is DVD at this time. HD-DVD
    >> will not be showing up for quite some time. You can count on that.


    It depends upon what you mean by some time. My guess is 3 to 5 years before
    significant adoption...ie to the point where the Top 100 titles of the year
    are offered in HD format.

    HD-DVD does not undermine the DVD golden egg in any way. Let's say the
    players/recorders were available today as well as the titles. Some people
    would stay with conventional DVDs, while others would buy the HD-DVDs.
    Conventional DVDs will play on HD players, so people don't have to worry
    about 8-Track flashbacks. It's not like introducing HD-DVD today would mean
    people would all of a sudden freak out and go back to VHS or something.
    keved, Sep 2, 2003
    #17
  18. "keved" <> wrote in message
    news:BB7A430D.1CE13%...
    >
    > >>> and know for a fact
    > >>> there will be new DVD players supporting WM9 coming out this Fall.
    > >>
    > >> Oh, so anyone that has a player now is screwed, eh?

    > >
    > > No, someone buying a player that will decode WMV will have an enhancement in
    > > the
    > > same way that some players will allow for the playback of MP3 audio and

    other
    > > codecs.
    > >
    > > I get it...from your perspective "anything Microsoft is bad."

    >
    > You're wrong. Exisiting stand alone DVD players would not be able to play
    > WM9. So someone who has a player now would be, well I wouldn't say screwed,
    > but would need to buy a new player if they wanted to play WM9 titles.



    It's not very different from SACD or DVD-A. I'm just saying that it's a nice
    bonus to be able to play WMV and it would be great if it also supports MPEG4 and
    other codecs as well. Processors are doubling in power and halving in price at a
    rapid pace. There's no reason future DVD players shouldn't take advantage of
    that power and provide more options.

    >
    > It takes significantly more processing power, so expect WM9 players would be
    > significantly more expensive.
    >
    > Oh, you should also expect new and improved copy-protection on those titles.


    That's not a big concern for me as I am a purchaser of media of all types. As
    long as I can copy the stuff that I personally produce or have rights to copy
    I'm fine with DRM.

    >
    > I wouldn't bet the farm on those players actually being available this year
    > (if ever).


    I think we will see a Samsung player that supports WMV in the next 6 months.

    >
    >
    > >>> The fact that Microsoft, and I'm sure other companies soon, have been able
    > >>> to fit an entire HD resolution movie on a standard DVD bodes well for an

    HD
    > >>> standard that doesn't require blue lasers and extensive retooling for the
    > >>> hardware manufactures.

    >
    > But it's (software) not standard DVD, it's only physically standard DVD.
    > There still needs to be significant modification of the players in several
    > ways. In the end this compares to standard DVD as: better video, but more
    > expensive, no recording in this format unless it would be really expensive,
    > and disk capacity remains the same.


    Standard DVD is just software as well. There would be no modification needed of
    the laser and transport mechanism, it's all CPU and firmware. The great thing
    about the new codecs is they effectively provide more storage with the SAME disc
    capacity. With the T-2 release they were able to provide HD quality on a bonus
    disc at very little additional cost to the consumer who can still play the
    standard resolution DVD in his/her theater set up. It's very easy to record WMV
    and MPEG4 and other codecs on your computer from your home video or any other
    source. It will be a long time coming for Blue Ray players in your computer. If
    anything, HD on a standard DVD makes more sense from the standpoint of
    usability. There still isn't an SACD compatible drive for computers and you
    probably won't see one soon if Sony/Phillips (the makers of Blue Ray) have thier
    way.

    >
    > Is that really worth making the switch, when Blu-Ray offers even better
    > video, recordability, larger disk capacity, and roughly the same price?


    Blue Ray is definately coming, but you will soon be faced with the same issues
    of new and better codecs, new machines with new features and new capabilities.
    I was the first on my block with a Sony S7000 DVD player back in April of '97
    and I expect I'll be one of the first to buy a Blue Ray machine as well. I find
    it exciting, I enjoy new technology.
    Charles Tomaras, Sep 3, 2003
    #18
  19. "keved" <> wrote in message
    news:BB7A3A0D.1CDF6%...
    > in article , Charles Tomaras at
    > wrote on 9/2/03 7:37 AM:
    >
    > >
    > > "keved" <> wrote in message
    > > news:BB79791A.1CC22%...
    > >>
    > >> I haven't seen any players/prototypes handling WMV9. I hope I never do!

    > >
    > > Windows Media 9 technologies are very good. I'd hope your assumed "anything
    > > Microsoft is bad" attitude won't keep you from acknowledging their

    successes.
    > > You may well see Windows Media as the digital projection format of choice

    for
    > > theaters in the future. The Landmark chain has already implemented it on a
    > > number
    > > of their screens and have plans to have it available on all of their 180 or

    so
    > > screens by year end. The results are impressive.

    >
    > I actually use lots of Microsoft products. MS Office is best in class, and
    > I was using Explorer for a long time before Safari came along. Likewise I
    > use MS Entourage.
    >
    > However I don't want to see a proprietary technology, especially one that is
    > controlled by Microsoft, take control over in this area. I also don't see
    > WMV9 being that good of an idea for DVD players compared to other
    > technologies.


    I respect your opinions, but I'm also guessing that you probably have not
    checked out Windows Media 9 very much yet. There still isn't a Mac player that
    supports WMV9. Best information says that the OS X WM9 player will be out this
    Fall. I think you will be impressed with the performance of the 9 series video
    codecs when you get a chance to really check them out. Next time you are on a
    newer Windows machine with some time to kill and a fast connection go to the
    Windows Media Technologies site and view a few of the HD demos and other video
    demos at varying bandwidth and resolutions.
    Charles Tomaras, Sep 3, 2003
    #19
  20. Scot Gardner

    Smaug69 Guest

    "Charles Tomaras" <> wrote in message news:<>...
    > "Smaug69" <> wrote in message
    > news:...
    > >
    > > 1440x816 is the actual encoded resolution of that T2 WM9 version, from
    > > what I have heard about it, and that's not high definition, I'm
    > > afraid. And you still have to watch it on your PC monitor.

    >
    > How do you figure 1440 x 816 progressive isn't HD resolution?


    It isn't progressive on the disc.

    Smaug69
    Smaug69, Sep 3, 2003
    #20
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