Thursday, December 18, 2008

Blu-ray gets voted in as one of the worst techs of the year

Looks like Blu-ray isn't impressing Yahoo! Tech at all. The usual arguments are here (direct or referenced) that it's slow, expensive, and not much of an improvement to the average consumer.

The comments on "Is Blu-ray the new Laserdisc?" shows both sides of the fence well. The videophiles are throwing tantrums that everyone is essentially a blind idiot if they can't discern the extra pixel count and "better" sound (read, "everyone should open their wallet-holes"). The average joes are saying that upscaled DVD is comparable and the cost isn't justified. And so on, and so forth.

When a commenter inferred that only an average consumer would think upscaled DVD is comparable, I laughed a bit. I hardly consider myself an average consumer, taking the challenge of playing the movies side-by-side and on different televisions to try and be amazed by Blu-ray. I keep taking Hollywood Video up on their Free Blu-ray Rental coupons, but we still switch between DVD and Blu-ray with no complaints of quality.

My stance: Does Blu-ray look better? Yes. Does it impact the experience enough to demand an upgrade? Hell no. How much time it takes for me to forget I'm watching Blu-ray? 2-5 minutes. DVD didn't have a picture problem to begin with. I think that's why Blu-ray is in trouble. They try to sell special features on BD, but most people couldn't care less about special features.

In the end, I believe that they will have to come up with either a more convenient media or a new way to experience movies (3D, holographic, etc.). On that note, I have yet to see anyone mention how the media form factor hasn't changed yet (CD sized media). Every prior major media shift has included a size and form change. With the full-circle wow-factor missing from it's technology, it's difficult to say there's a long future for Blu-ray unless the studios force it upon us.


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