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-   -   Is Warner’s Hybrid “Total HD” Disc Dead? ( 07-05-2007 03:37 PM

Is Warner’s Hybrid “Total HD” Disc Dead?
Warner Bros. Home Entertainment, in an unexpected move, has announced a delay in the launch of the Total HD disc format until next year. Total HD discs are two-sided discs that have HD DVD on one side and the competing Blu-ray format on the other.

Proponents of the Total HD Disc format say that it gives the consumers both HD formats on one simple disc at a fair price. Critics suggest the idea of two new formats on one disc only complicates HDTV and disc format decisions for consumers who are already understandably confused.

Currently, Warner Bros Home Entertainment and Paramount are the only two movie studios producing movie titles in both high-definition formats. Universal remains loyal only to the HD DVD format while Disney/Buena Vista and Sony are dedicated solely to the Blu-ray HD disc format.

The launch delay is due in large part to the idea that Hollywood movie studios are truly divided over the two HD disc formats. Consumers remember the VHS versus Beta format war and are adopting the new HD formats with less enthusiasm than they did with DVD because of the uncertainly over both formats. More importantly, copy protection issues make it difficult for consumers to get their players physically working. Additionally, studios are slow to release a meaningful volume of high profile, new films on either of the HD disc formats. Lastly and despite the boom in HDTV sales, players are priced at many times that of a traditional DVD player, leaving consumers wondering if the upgrade is worth it right now. If HD disc players drop to $199 or lower for the holidays this year – expect one or both of the formats to boom. In this case, Total HD could be a viable solution but more than likely “universal” players, like the ones seen in the awful audio format war between DVD-Audio and SACD, would be more the norm on store shelves.


HiDefBob 07-05-2007 04:45 PM

Re: Is Warner’s Hybrid “Total HD” Disc Dead?
I would never purchase a cheapo ($199) HD player! The PQ would almost assuredly will be inferior to my high end ($X000) regular DVD player which gives a picture far superior to 90% of the DVD players on the market today! Friends are always remarking on the PQ on my system. You get what you pay for. An "El Crapo" HD player is going to produce crappy PQ! But it seems most people don't really care!

kennyt 07-05-2007 05:20 PM

Re: Is Warner’s Hybrid “Total HD” Disc Dead?

I think you will find that ANY HD DVD or Blu-ray player will outperform your DVD player. I personally have a few $6K plus players and my wife can tell when something is HD DVD or Blu-ray. You can get many of the upper level Blu-ray and HD DVD players for less than $500 on line. Try one, I think you will be surprised.

This is coming from a guy who owns several $6,000 plus DVD players and I would rather watch movies in either of the new formats than my upscaled DVD's.


Stokestack 07-05-2007 05:31 PM

Hybrid discs and combo players merely perpetuate this asinine war. The hybrid format should be DVD/Blu-Ray, not two HD formats.

It's unfortunate that Toshiba floated its lame "lower capacity but cheaper to produce for the time being" format. The result is that the entire industry has missed the boat; the most likely outcome is that we will now never have a higher-capacity physical medium. We'll go directly to downloaded, even more highly compressed material.

timbre4 07-05-2007 05:43 PM

Re: Is Warner’s Hybrid “Total HD” Disc Dead?
Warner will never have to produce THD discs; CES Jan 2008 will see Blu-Ray players from the fence sitters (Denon, et al) because it will all be over with.

sdlr 07-05-2007 06:06 PM

Re: Is Warner’s Hybrid “Total HD” Disc Dead?
I have already made my choice when I bought the PS3. I really can't see myself purchasing a HD-dvd player. Worse yet, a hybrid of sorts. This article mentions that the consumers are understandably confused. I disagree, Consumers are understandably frustrated. We know what we want. It is the money-hungry companies that are confused. None of them will back down. Just admit defeat so the consumers can be happy again.

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