HD Downloads Are Here

Discussion in 'High Definition' started by Reverenddave, Jan 15, 2008.

  1. Reverenddave

    Reverenddave New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2000
    Messages:
    906
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    The Format War might end up being for nothing. HD movie downloads are here. All major studios are on board. While the specs currently aren't up to par (no 1080i/p and only 5.1 audio), I imagine those will improve in the future.

    And for people that think downloads will never take hold, apparently Apple has sold more movies online through iTunes than HD-DVD & Blu-Ray combined.

     
  2. Dave

    Dave Pimp

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 1999
    Messages:
    7,332
    Likes Received:
    524
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    You can't compare iTunes downloads, which are clearly not HD, versus full HD movie downloads.

    Until something like Fios is available for everyone, HD movie downloads don't have a chance at taking over Blu or even HD-DVD for that matter.

    I mean, a single-layer barebones DVD is 4gb. Imagine trying to download that? Now multiply that by 2 or 3x, which I imagine would be the minimum for an HD movie unless they compress the hell out of it.
     
  3. Reverenddave

    Reverenddave New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2000
    Messages:
    906
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Single-layer HD-DVDs are only 15GB. And those hold a 1080p movie with multiple audio tracks. If the video is only 720p and 5.1 audio, you can probably fit a whole HD movie in a 10GB file. With cable internet, you can download that in a couple hours.

    While you couldn't stream the film, you can easily download the file in the morning and watch the movie that night.
     
  4. Dave

    Dave Pimp

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 1999
    Messages:
    7,332
    Likes Received:
    524
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    Who the hell wants 720p?

    And what cable provider are you using? Cuz I was using this big one called Comcast that would shut off my connection after downloading several gigs in a few days, nevermind 10+ gb in the same day. Do a google search and you will find many similar experiences. Because of them I switch to Verizon DSL (wish I could get FIOS; I had it before I moved), which is better in regards to not being shut off, but the speed is slower. Cable is also a shared pipe, so if everyone and their Mom does get this, it's going to crawl.

    Enthusiasts will have no interests in this, and that is where the HD market is right now. Perhaps if it goes more mainstream, but J6P would be just as happy with a Divx file.

    For this to work, the world needs to be on fiber optic Internet connections (Fios, for one).
     
  5. dwatts

    dwatts Active Member

    Joined:
    May 13, 2002
    Messages:
    16,580
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Location:
    Crashed
    Here's something to put this in perspective. If the industry went to a download model then even *I* would start pirating films.

    I fail to see any benefit at all for the consumer here, just lots of money saved by studios, which doubtless won't be passed on to people like me. The value proposition is very poor indeed.

    Today I spend, say, $10 to buy and own a DVD. I can copy it to my computer, I can play it on any one of several players in my house, I can take it on the road while travelling and watch it on DVD players in hotel rooms or on my laptop. However, they're going to want me to download a file, which doubtless will be encrypted up the wazoo, with digital signatures which'll stop me doing what I want with it, and I'll own nothing more than a file.

    NOT ATTRACTIVE.

    Seriously, if this became the norm I'd just start copy from torrents. The film companies will have taken a step too far in crapping over the consumer.
     
  6. AndiOne

    AndiOne New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2004
    Messages:
    52
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Location:
    Sweden
    Fiber is quite common here in Sweden.
    I have an 100Mbit connection. Takes me ~20 minutes to download 10gb.

    But who want´s to pay for downloading movies?
    I prefer buying them on DVD`s or LD`s or HD-DVD, BD`s.
     
  7. Dave

    Dave Pimp

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 1999
    Messages:
    7,332
    Likes Received:
    524
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    I just don't see it ever taking off.

    MP3s are one thing; they are small.

    HD movie downloads is a whole 'nother ball game. Can't blame them for trying, but this will never replace the disc medium.
     
  8. dwatts

    dwatts Active Member

    Joined:
    May 13, 2002
    Messages:
    16,580
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Location:
    Crashed
    I actually believe it will one day - a day a long way away.

    I don't/won't pay for MP3's either. If CD's ever went away, then I'd join the file share crowd. I simply feel it shows contempt for the audience as they reduce the value of their product to that of a word doc. We know prices won't fall, so it's just more profit for the labels.....
     
  9. Shannafey

    Shannafey Don't Monkey With Me!

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2001
    Messages:
    6,941
    Likes Received:
    34
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    South Florida, But Far from the Hell that is Miami
    I am so with you on this, Dwatts!!
     
  10. Reverenddave

    Reverenddave New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2000
    Messages:
    906
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    If you'd asked me 10 years ago, I never would have believed that I'd prefer a computer file over a compact disc. But in the past 10 years, I've only bought maybe 4-5 CDs. These days, if I want music I get an MP3.

    Now, you're talking to someone that owns over 2,500 DVDs and 350 HD/BR discs. I buy them because I love collecting movies and I like having them on hand to watch whenever I want.

    My initial feelings have always been against movie downloads. I love my DVD collection. And the thought of owning or renting a computer file instead of a disc is unappealing.

    But when I look at my collection, I see a lot of movies and shows that I haven't gotten around to watching. Of those that I've watched, about 95% have only been watched once. And maybe 1%-2% have been watched more than twice. It would be nice to only pay for what I actually watch.

    And in addition to the thousands of dollars I've spent on this collection, there's also the matter of storage. My movie collection takes up an entire room with specially built shelves to hold everything.

    If I could choose between thousands of movies. Watch it immediately when I wanted. Store movies on a couple tiny hard drives. And watch them on any device. Then I'd be willing to switch over to computer files.

    So a couple things would need to happen.

    First, they need to have a huge selection of films available. And those downloaded films need to be the same quality as on the physical media.

    Second, the movie would need to start streaming within a few minutes. I don't want to wait all day. That would require either smaller files (with new compression methods) or faster internet connections.

    Third, there needs to be affordable rentals with an option to buy. Some movies require multiple viewings, and many only need to be watched once.

    Fourth, the file usage has to be flexible. I don't have a problem with copy protection but it needs to be reasonable. Don't tie the consumer's hands. I need the ability to watch files in the living room, bedroom and on my laptop.

    If they can do these things, then I'm willing to switch to downloads. Obviously, it's not at that stage yet. But I think it's only a matter of time.
     
  11. X-human

    X-human I ate my keys

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2003
    Messages:
    8,813
    Likes Received:
    1,297
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Illinois
    Digital Downloading in general will take off, in five to ten years, but it'll take off.

    But looking at AppleTV this really is only rental competition. You have to wait an extra 30-days from release date before you can download it, and once you start playing it it'll only last 24-hours. We watch one of my Pirate BD's once a month. I'm not going to spend $5 to watch Pirates again and again. So this doesn't take away from BD's main use.

    Comcast Cable is already doing "OnDemand," I can watch a selected a movie in HD instantly. It streams at first so I can instantly start and watch it but copies the video too, so once it's finished downloading it's still on my DVR for the remainder of the rental. Eventually I'm sure it'll mature to the state that HDi/BD-J can provide with interactive features.

    To me cable providers are probably the best method. It uses the same hardware, my cable box, which I'd have anyways for HD cable and HD DVR. This is the future of HD cable providers, so where does AppleTV fit in? Nowhere that I can see, that's why I won't buy it.
     
  12. dwatts

    dwatts Active Member

    Joined:
    May 13, 2002
    Messages:
    16,580
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Location:
    Crashed
    Erm, you can do that today, it's called RENTING.
     
  13. Reverenddave

    Reverenddave New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2000
    Messages:
    906
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Except the rental store doesn't always have what you want. And you either have to go to the store or wait a couple days for them to mail it to you. That's why I currently buy all my movies instead of renting. I'm willing to pay for the convenience.

    Ideally, you wouldn't have those problems with downloads. The outlet's entire catalog would be available at any time of the day or night from anywhere in the world. And the movie would be ready for watching with a few clicks of the mouse.
     
  14. dwatts

    dwatts Active Member

    Joined:
    May 13, 2002
    Messages:
    16,580
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Location:
    Crashed
    Not going to happen though mate, is it. Different censorship requiremnets, different ratings requirements, rights issues (which vary country to country) etc. Worldwide? Not a chance.
     
  15. Reverenddave

    Reverenddave New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2000
    Messages:
    906
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Fine, not anywhere in the world. But anywhere in the USA. Say I go visit family in California. Can't get rentals from Netflix. And would you really want to hassle with renting a disc at Blockbuster in a strange town?

    Once the download services get all the kinks worked out, the rental services will start going out of business. That's why Netflix is putting so much work into their download service. They can see the writing on the wall.
     
  16. dwatts

    dwatts Active Member

    Joined:
    May 13, 2002
    Messages:
    16,580
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Location:
    Crashed
    Well, I don't rent discs. If I need movies on the road I would either a) take the disc, b) I'd copy the movie to the hard disc, or c) - the option I actually take, I just go buy something locally. You always find different bargains as you move around.

    Bandwidth is the issue here - I know my puny 2mb connection isn't anywhere near enough.

    There is talk of ISP's selling specific traffic rather than a flat fee for a simple pipe. So for instance, you want to download movies and watch them? You'll need a movie package from your ISP to prioritize your traffic and guarantee throughput. Some ISP's are already doing this for gaming. So this won't be the end of it....

    You know, we could all do this now with our collections - just copy your collection to a hard disc.... Not that I'm going to.... I also think total cost here will actually be greater than I have now. I bet you have to pay more for premium content, with premium content being applied to niche product etc.
     
  17. Dave

    Dave Pimp

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 1999
    Messages:
    7,332
    Likes Received:
    524
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    Be consistent now. "And the movie would be ready for watching with a few clicks of the mouse....and coming back a day later."

    You said it yourself: Start in the morning and coming back at the end of the day is quite a bit longer than a "few clicks of a mouse". In 10 years, maybe everyone will have fiber optic net connections, but in the near future, you're right - click a few buttons and come back in a day. How is that better than going to a video store? Shit, even Netflix only takes a day to get to me.

    Yeah, I love the Netflix commercial where they pimp downloading a movie, only to show a guy on the couch with his face pressed against a tiny laptop screen. Sad advertising, really.

    I have no doubt there will be a market for downloading movies, but I don't think it will ever overtake the disc medium. This just isn't the same as CD and MP3. The mass public isn't going to be carrying around portable video players. Yes, there are portable DVD players, portable media players, and laptops, but those are niche markets. There isn't as great of a demand to have movies on the go. So really, we're talking about movies at home. I get that. And I get J6P might find it more convenient than buying/renting on disc. But until fiber optic is the norm, it just isn't going to happen.

    Now, the Netflix service is a different ball of wax because it's not HD and not even DVD. I imagine it's just divx or some variation, which looks fine enough on a computer screen. I can see that gaining some ground in the coming years, but it's not even going to put a dent in the home video market.

    Netflix has tons of competition out there. Of course they'll be getting their feet wet in any possible rental market.
     
  18. dwatts

    dwatts Active Member

    Joined:
    May 13, 2002
    Messages:
    16,580
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    38
    Location:
    Crashed
    You think that's the case in the US, Dave - what do you think Europe is like? :lol:
     
  19. Reverenddave

    Reverenddave New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2000
    Messages:
    906
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Over time, bandwidth is going to improve. In the past couple years I've gone from 2mb to 6mb. I wouldn't be surprised if fiber optic lines are available here in the next 2-3 years.

    And with internet access being involved in more aspects of peoples lives, ISPs are going to adapt to meet those needs. The same way ISPs changed from per-hour charges to unlimited. As time goes on, people are going to require more and more bandwidth. ISPs will find ways to provide it.

    There will also be improvement in compression algorithms. You'll be able to get HD movies in a much smaller file. Which will require less bandwidth and hard drive space.
     
  20. I look forward to more robust download services. I've already gone mostly digital with music, with DRM-free 256kbps MP3s from Amazon that are usually several dollars cheaper by the album than their CD counterparts (the last album I bought--Killswitch Engage's "As Daylight Dies"--was around $4 cheaper than if I had bought it at Best Buy). If every major label can do that with music, I certainly think it's possible that movie studios could do the same. I also tend to rent more movies from XBox Live than any rental store, and have always had good experiences with it. Eventually I'll take a crack at purchasing movie downloads rather than renting them, but for right now I don't have the extra storage space. Which is ironic, because lack of actual shelf space is what has driven me away from collecting and towards renting in the first place.

    I doubt I'll use this service, but I'm glad to see another player in the HD download game. Maybe I'll have to start saving my pennies for a new tv sooner than I thought.

    For those of you complaining about not having fiber available, I'd trade with you if I could--in my area, Verizon has stopped offering full-speed DSL, so now your only choices are the budget DSL (768kb) which I have and would like to upgrade from, or FIOS which is way more than I need at the moment. Go figure.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 16, 2008

Share This Page