Rumor: Toshiba To Stop HD DVD Support

Rumor: Toshiba To Stop HD DVD Support

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As Blu-Ray wages war on Toshiba's trailing HD DVD, rumors are circulating that the manufacturer is planning to pull the plug on the project.

Sources for the Hollywood Reporter have hinted that Toshiba will soon drop its production of the HD DVD disc following a loss of both studio and retail support. Following Blu-Ray sales taking 93 percent of the total high-definition hardware sales in December, Toshiba drastically slashed prices of HD DVD players only to take 28 percent of the hardware market and 18 percent of the movie market in January. The combination of manufacturing losses and a lack of sales may have finally convinced Toshiba to surrender to Sony.

Jodi Sally, Vice President of Marketing for Toshiba America Consumer Products, stands behind the format. "Based on its technological advancements, we continue to believe HD DVD is the best format for consumers, given the value and consistent quality inherent in our player offerings."

Still, she didn't deny that Toshiba is examining the consumers' response to the high-definition war. "Given the market developments in the past month, Toshiba will continue to study the market impact and the value proposition for consumers, particularly in light of our recent price reductions on all HD DVD players."

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Sort of an unrelated question... many people claimed that Blu-Ray was superior because it could hold more, but I also heard that the discs were slower to retrieve data from (a pretty crucial item for gamers). Are Blu-Ray drives (or discs) slower than their HD DVD competitors? Just curious.

Blu-Ray drives and HD-DVD drives are pretty similar in their data transfer rates. (Scratch that: according to wikipedia, they're identical. 36 Mb/s for 1x on both) So to answer your original question, no. Same speed.

I think what you may have been hearing is the difference in transfer rates between early 1x and 2x speed BD/HD drives, and 12x+ DVD drives (like the 360 uses). There is indeed a difference between the maximum transfer rates here, but there are also issues about CAV (Constant Angular Velocity) and CLV (Constant Linear Velocity) when measuring those speeds, and how they affect transfer rates. Essentially, at peak transfer rates, while reading the outer parts of the disc, the 360's 12x DVD drive is quite a bit faster on Single layer media (which the majority of game discs have not been, they've been dual-layer, which I believe the 360 only reads at 8x max) than the PS3's 2x BD drive is. So, on the outer edges, the 360's DVD is faster than the PS3's Blu-Ray. On the average, their in-game performance may be similar (due to the way that resources can be optimally placed on a disc to ensure that things needing the outer edge speed are placed there). Under worst case scenarios, I believe the PS3's transfer rate would be faster than the 360's.

Fascinating, non?

Thanks! ;-)

Weird.
I remember an add here in OZ:

Resident evil 3 disk DVD dulex edition: $39:89
Resident evil Blue-Ray basic edition : $39:89

I dont get it is Blue-Ray really that good? Isnt it just better grapics and faster loading*?
*(which i know know isnt allways true:)

A friend of mine is badgering me about how awesome his Blue-Ray movies are, while quite frankly i can barely se a diffirence and when i can i find myself not caring.

I don't see shit between Blu-Ray and a DVD upscaler. The difference isn't really there between a normal DVD and a Blu Ray player.

I really wanted HD DVD to do well because I like competition. I want PS3 and 360 to go at it for years and years, it leads to price drops and companies working hard to vomit up goodness to us baby birds. But...in this particular case...it's looks like I'm going to be going Blu Ray.

I don't see what's so special about Blu-Ray movies. That and HD-DVD are both 1080 with the same frame rate.

Doesnt paticularly bother me since I dont use either HD-DVD's or Blu Ray. long as good old non prefixed DVDs are around ill be happy not caring about yet another Sony monopolising attempt, though was kinda hoping it would go the way of betamax.

I wonder if MS will get around to making a plug-in Blu-ray player for the 360 now? If Blu-ray becomes the standard for movie releases and rentals, I would want one... but I wouldn't want to shell out for a PS3 or separate BR player.

Besides, I'd have to get rid of my existing DVD player to make room for one, and I like my Pioneer DVD... it plays SuperAudio CDs very nicely. (Yay for more dead formats.)

-- Steve

Knight Templar:

I don't get it, is Blu-ray really that good? Isn't it just better graphics and faster loading*?

Better in comparison to what? Compared to DVD, yes, Blu-ray has significantly higher storage capacities, which allows for higher resolution feature-length films on a single disc. The "faster loading" is something I discussed above, and while I don't know where you heard it, for the early variations of Blu-ray (and HD DVD), there were not significant gains in transfer rates. The other benefit that HD DVD and Blu-ray brought in comparison to DVD was support for better audio formats (for those individuals that have home theater systems that can take advantage of them). Better in comparison to HD DVD? If you ask me, you might as well flip a coin, as they both had advantages and disadvantages in comparison to the other. The relevant comparison here is High-Definition versus Standard-Definition content.

sammyfreak:

A friend of mine is badgering me about how awesome his Blu-ray movies are, while quite frankly I can barely see a difference and when I can I find myself not caring.

nilpferdkoenig:

I don't see shit between Blu-ray and a DVD upscaler. The difference isn't really there between a normal DVD and a Blu-ray player.

Whether or not a difference is noticeable depends on a lot of different variables. Quality of the source material (if it wasn't filmed in Hi-Def to start with, putting it on a Hi-Def disc isn't going to do much for it), quality of the playback device (my Oppo does an amazing job of scaling and de-interlacing content, but not all scalers/de-interlacers do), quality of the display device (watching a Hi-Def movie on a SD or ED TV isn't going to look very different from watching a SD DVD), size of the display device/distance from the display device (See this excellent chart, essentially covering the points at which screen size, resolution, and viewing distance conspire to saturate the eye's native resolution, at which point you LITERALLY could not see a difference, even if you were trained, and trying to), etc. Oh, and the last factor is the individual doing the watching. If you've just got a really good eye for it, it will matter to you. If you don't pay that much attention, it won't matter at all. And there's always the factor of whether you've been trained to notice it or not. Similar to the rainbows that people experienced with DLP TVs using color wheels, some people never noticed the rainbows, while for others, after they'd seen it once, they saw it everywhere, because their eyes were attuned to it. I guess, my point in all of this is, just because you can't see it, doesn't mean the difference isn't there. It just means it may not be there for you.

The Q:

I really wanted HD DVD to do well because I like competition. I want PS3 and 360 to go at it for years and years, it leads to price drops and companies working hard to vomit up goodness to us baby birds. But...in this particular case...it's looks like I'm going to be going Blu-ray.

The death of HD DVD does not spell the end of competition in the console space. You do realize that the PS2 and the XBOX both had DVD drives? Did that somehow make them less competitive? When the PS4 and Xbox720 come out and both have Blu-ray drives, will that somehow matter?

This just means the CE industry has finally settled on a high-capacity optical disc medium for the next few years. Now, movies will all come out in one format, so that everyone doesn't have to buy two players, or a doubly expensive dual-format player, just to get all of the movies they want. Personally, I would've preferred HD DVD become the standard, for a variety of reasons I won't go into right now, but overriding that disappointment is sheer joy that a format has been settled on. This whole "competition" has done nothing but waste resources and delay widespread availability of HD players and discs.

Just because there isn't a format war going on in the CE space, doesn't mean there won't be competition there either. This doesn't suddenly create a monopoly in the Blu-ray player market. You'll still have different companies competing with each other to produce better Blu-ray players, cheaper Blu-ray players, etc.

@defcon 1: I think I've replied to your points in the course of responding to the others, but feel free to prove me wrong.

Cousin_IT:
long as good old non prefixed DVDs are around ill be happy not caring about yet another Sony monopolising attempt, though was kinda hoping it would go the way of betamax.

I wouldn't count on "good old non prefixed DVDs" being around for much longer. As of right now, given the lack of Blu-ray player penetration, movies will continue to be released on DVD. Eventually, Blu-ray players will be ubiquitous enough that the cost savings of producing content on DVD will be outweighed by the costs of maintaining authoring equipment for both. As with VHS before it, DVD is on its way out. Though, as always, how long this process will take is an unknown.

Geoffrey42:

Cousin_IT:
long as good old non prefixed DVDs are around ill be happy not caring about yet another Sony monopolising attempt, though was kinda hoping it would go the way of betamax.

I wouldn't count on "good old non prefixed DVDs" being around for much longer. As of right now, given the lack of Blu-ray player penetration, movies will continue to be released on DVD. Eventually, Blu-ray players will be ubiquitous enough that the cost savings of producing content on DVD will be outweighed by the costs of maintaining authoring equipment for both. As with VHS before it, DVD is on its way out. Though, as always, how long this process will take is an unknown.

In that case I can only hope Sony havent learnt from Betamax & attempt again to maintain dictatorial control over blue-ray limiting its mass marketability. Unless the players prices are slashed, I dont see its replacing DVD happening, paticularly in such a time as now where the UKs & USAs economies are boardering on recession = less disposable income.

Sony finally wins a proprietary format battle! So long Umatic, mini-disc, beta-max, 3.5 inch floppy, and Pro Duo stick! Score one for Sony! Yes!!

 

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