Alright, so the idea of a high-definition home video kicks some serious ass. Indeed, I love crystal-clear pictures and sound that is so true to life it gives goosebumps.
However, buying a new HD-compatible TV, a new HD-compatable DVD player (whether Blu-ray or HD-DVD), and all the goddamned DVDs in HD (some of which will simply replace the regular DVD versions already in my personal collection) is fucking ridiculous.
Let's break it down:
HD TV: $1500-2000 (mid-range)
Blu-ray DVD player: $1000
Replacement DVDs for my collection: $8160 (at $30 per movie, 272 titles not including TV shows or multi-disc features)
Yeah....not spending $11,000, especially this early in the game. While I think Blu-ray will win out the battle (it's use in the PS3 system will be key, as well as already being backed by Sony, Apple, Panasonic, Philips, Samsung, Sharp, Pioneer, Dell and movie studios like Sony, 20th Century Fox, Lions Gate and Disney versus HD-DVD's pathetic showing of Toshiba, Microsoft, Sanyo, NEC and movie studios like New Line and Universal), there is no guarantee which, if either, will become the dominant format. Currently, Best Buy has 39 HD-DVD titles available to buy, while Blu-ray only has 21. Either way, I don't want to be a Betamax sucker, nor a loser with a Laserdisc player.
With any luck, in a couple years, the Blu-ray movies will be more prevalent, available at mainstream prices, and the TVs and players will also be reasonably priced. Oh, and I need to be able to watch my current DVDs. This seems to be the current technological trend, either by creating an advancement on the same format (Playstation and X-Box are good examples of being able to use outdated games on current systems) or by incorporating both types to one machine (the Nintendo DS can play Game Boy games with dual ports, and of course VCR/DVD combo players are popular for those clinging to the massively outdated videotapes). While the former is preferred, I'll take the latter if it saves me the $8000 it would cost to replace my collection.
In any case, I'm waiting...because of money restrictions, fear of making a wrong choice, and for some of the arguments made in the article cited at the end of this post. One of the more humorous being their review of the remote control: "Hey, Samsung — we just paid you $1,000. How about tossing us a bone — like illuminated buttons on the remote?" and "On the other hand, the remote is filled with buttons that don't seem to do anything. (Some of them, like Cancel, are just a tease.)"
As a final note, I love nytimes.com.
Source: Which New DVD Format? Neither Just Yet, David Pogue (NYTimes)