HD vs BlueRay, which´s best?

Discussion in 'PC Hardware, Software and Displays' started by IGNDavid, Mar 9, 2007.

  1. mrcorbo

    mrcorbo Foo Fighter
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    Well, if there comes a point at a lower bitrate when you become perceptually lossless then more bits don't add anything at all. And who wants uncompressed audio? That's just a waste when there are lossless compressed formats available.

    I can't say that there is no potential benefit to using a higher bitrate with AVC/VC-1 that might be afforded by BD-50 over HD DVD, but BluRay was originally targeted to use MPEG2 compression exclusively and only added the advanced codecs because of lobbying by the studios (most notably Warner). If they thought that they could achieve sufficient quality with MPEG2 @ 50GB it's not that much of a stretch to beleive that sufficient quality could be achieved with the advanced codecs @ 30GB.

    I'm not saying this is the case, but until someone does a double-blind encoding test using mutiple different test clips of losslessly compressed material using AVC/VC-1 at escalating bitrates, it's impossible to say it isn't either.

    I'm pretty sure the key differences between the 2 formats are going to be studio support and price.
     
  2. Nick Laslett

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    Even though you can't always believe what people post in forums, over time you can get a good idea of trustworthiness and honesty. B3D is an excellent example of this.

    There is an interesting thread at AVS asking why Blu-Ray is so popular in Japan. This sparked a discourse where many posters claimed this was because of Sony's popularity. This then led to a lot of sillyness about Blu-Ray being a Sony format. No matter how many times it is repeated, that a broad coalition of CE manufactures are behind Blu-Ray it always get's painted as a Sony format.

    Then a reputable long standing member of AVS stepped in to quash the FUD.

    http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=794828

     
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  3. avaya

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    That point has not been reached. The second point, who wants 5.1 surround sound? Stereo seems enough...it's essentially the same schtick. Uncompressed audio is superior. You are again compromising.

    Source please, I'm pretty sure Warner had little to do with this lobbying, they were more concerned with getting their DVD-9 equivalent established on the BD specification (BD-9). Apple actually wanted to vote VC-1 out, because...well they are Apple. Sony and Panasonic especially have been big MPEG-4 supporters for a long time...
     
  4. mrcorbo

    mrcorbo Foo Fighter
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    As I said, I won't argue this. You can feel free to accept it on faith if you want, unless you have a link to somewhere that has done the type of testing required to prove it.
    Losslessly compressed audio is just that. You get identical bitstreams out of the decoder to what you sent in to the encoder. Uncompressed audio is in no way superior from a qualitative standpoint. The only reasons to use uncompressed audio are cheaper mastering (one less licensing cost to pay) and what I think has been the reason it has been used so far; compatibility, since early players (both HD DVD and BR) didn't support the full audio spec of the formats pending firmware upgrades.
    I'll do some digging and see what I can find link-wise from before the advanced video codecs were approved and added to the BR spec and get back to you on that. I just couldn't let the bit about uncompressed audio being superior to lossless audio go by without an immediate response
     
  5. mrcorbo

    mrcorbo Foo Fighter
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    OK, here's my follow-up with what I found and some corrections to what I said in my earlier post.

    1. Advanced Codec(s) were in fact planned for BR, it was just a matter of whether it would be AVC or just AVC and VC-1. VC-1 was what the non-format-aligned studios were pushing for because it would allow them to use MS's professional VC-1 encoding tools for both their HD DVD and BR releases. Not only did this save them from having to do 2 seperate encodes, but (at least at the time) MS's tools and support were well ahead of anything being offered for AVC encoding.

    2. Where I mis-remembered about MPEG2 was actually a result of Sony's BD mastering software not supporting any other types of video streams in early versions. The statements made by Sony reps at the time about MPEG2 being more mature and therefore able to achieve better results was likely PR FUD to make up for this and not a real BDA or even company policy. I confused this to mean that Sony, at least, didn't think that advanced codecs were necessary.

    3. Apparently, the BluRay spec makes lossless compressed audio format support in players optional. So, uncompressed audio is necessary on this format, otherwise the next step down would be standard Dolby Digital @ 640 kbps. This surprised me, TBH. In comparison, HD DVD's spec requires players to support uncompressed PCM audio, the Dolby TrueHD lossless format, Dolby Digital+ @ 3Mbps, and Dolby Digital (EX) and DTS (ES) as found on DVD soundtracks. There's definitely some extra licensing fees being payed out there.
     
  6. LunchBox

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    Which companies support Blu-ray and/or HD-dvd nowadays?
     
  7. Sis

    Sis mental_v-sync=off;
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    After a bit of research I determined that the Blu-ray version of the Departed was the same as the HD DVD version, so we'd only be comparing decoder implementations, if I bought it. However, I did buy Casino Royale, and after watching just 5 minutes, all my concerns about "black levels" and the like are out the window. What an absolutely gorgeous image! The first few minutes are in black and white, and what can I say, other than "I'm floored". I saw this film in the the theater and so far every scene has been what I recalled from the theater. So I don't know if this means that I dislike mpeg2 (Casino Royale is AVC, all other movies I've seen on Blu-ray have been in mpeg2), but regardless, it is an example of just how great high def movies can look. It was so good that I had to respond to this thread...now back to the film...:grin:
     
  8. Arwin

    Arwin Now Officially a Top 10 Poster
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    Just got a mail from Sony yesterday confirming that I am getting Casino Royale for registering online with my PS3 master account. I should be getting it within 45 days of registration. Belgium, France and Italy are getting it to within 45 days after the movie is released there in May.
     
  9. ban25

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    There are some good looking films in MPEG2. Crank and Kingdom of Heaven both look very good. But all things being equal, a codec like AVC should be able to perform better, and hopefully it will receive more widespread use in the future. Actually, I probably have more AVC and VC-1 titles than MPEG2 at this point.
     
  10. Sis

    Sis mental_v-sync=off;
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    Crank looked really good, as did Black Hawk Down (I'll have to pick up Kingdom of Heaven). But they both seemed to suffer from black crush (annoyingly so in BHD). Casino Royale is possibly the best looking movie I've ever seen in high def though.
     
  11. Moloch

    Moloch God of Wicked Games
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    well there will me no video quality difference when both use the same codec since they'll (probability) always use the same encode for both rather then spending time on seperate encodes.
    Theres of course the law of diminishing returns so even if you could use stupid high bitrates (40mbps) I severely doubt there would be a big difference, except maybe in high motion scenes where the codecs might strugle.

    avaya: You're silly and seemiingly ill equipped to argue in favor on bluray.
    You're telling me you want uncompressed stereo pcm over lossless 5.1??
     
  12. avaya

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    Silly? Wanting the best possible audio and video with least compromises is silly? Why is that silly?

    If that's what you call silly then I'm a certified tool.

    There is an issue in which the lossless track is encoded that causes a difference between it and the uncompressed version however I am simply not bothered enough to actually search for the link to 100% black up that claim.

    All I see is irrationality on the HD-DVD side. I am not going to be politically correct about this issue at all since I can't even fathom why any technology enthusiast would even entertain an inferior format in a standards war. I simply can't. Yes I used the word inferior, if someone takes offence to that then I'm sorry I can't do anything about it.

    Oh price and marginal utility you say? Really I find it rather insane that someone would care so much about the short-term gain to sacrifice long term potential.

    Negative rep me if you like I do not care, my conscience on this is clear, I know I just want the better format to become the standard or failing that at least one of them to become a standard because the idea of digital distribution (15years away) with the pathetic quality it would have totally appals me. If I’m guilty of being anything, it's a being a fan boy of technology. So shoot me.

    These Blu-Ray HD-DVD arguments are some of the most banal and inane threads I have ever encountered. Let's not beat around the bush on this. I don't want any thinly veiled attacks, I just want the truth. Everything wrong with Blu-Ray is in software and is eminently fixable; you simply can’t say the same about HD-DVD.
     
  13. pcchen

    pcchen Moderator
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    I'm sorry but it's really irrational to believe lossless compressed audio has any difference to uncompressed audio.

    Short term gain? Sacrifice? Then why not wait for 100TB disc which you can store uncompressed video? Doesn't that even have more potential? Even considering a more realistic solution, who's to say that 25GB/50GB is good enough? Why not 50GB/100GB? It can certainly be done with current technology, just more expensive and maybe less reliable.

    Engineering is not about "have the best thing." It's about balance and efficiency. And this is not even all about engineering, it's also about marketing. That's why there's the so-called "format war." Simply saying that because Blu-ray looks technically superior so that everyone supporting HD DVD is irrational, is itself irrational.
     
  14. Moloch

    Moloch God of Wicked Games
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    Lossless audio is LOSSLESS.
    There is no differnece whatsoever in audio quality being lossless audio and compressed audio.
    NONE period.
    That's why it's called lossless
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lossless_audio.
    Go ahead and try to prove there is a difference, :grin:
     
  15. Arwin

    Arwin Now Officially a Top 10 Poster
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    Ok, so you know I am pretty much a Sony fanboy, right?

    But right now, at this point in time, HD DVD is still the better platform. More movies use VC-1, which seem to hide 3:2 best of the three codecs, and HDi is more mature and being used. BluRay still trails with getting BD-J out there as well as BD-Live.

    By next year, though, nothing should be holding BluRay back as on paper it has the most capabilities and best future-proofing. I like a platform to stick around for a while, and so I'm still rooting for BluRay to win the platform war (and of course because it's the platform I already have, and I'm hoping to be able to stick with my PS3 as the only media box next to my digital cable receiver and amplifier).

    Also, I like how BluRay has fixed and locked down burning early in the cycle. Burners are widely available and already affordable.

    So I think BluRay will be best, but right now, if you just look at movie playback, and ignore publisher support, then HD DVD still has the edge, being cheaper (unless you wanted a PS3 anyway), offering more features, and generally making better use of its capabilities.

    But BluRay FTUW. ;)
     
    #35 Arwin, Apr 13, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 13, 2007
  16. Ruined

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    HD DVD has more consistent video quality due to using advanced VC-1/AVC codecs 99% of the time, better/more advanced hardware/software standards resulting in more/better interactive features, and less DRM (no BD+) - therefore I feel HD DVD gives overall the better experience. And its cheaper, too.
     
  17. Random Digital

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    I think the $300 Blu-ray burner from Pioneer has made the decision easier for me.
    http://www.theinquirer.net/default.aspx?article=39034

    I could just slap that into my existing system and watch movies and use the 50GB discs for backup.

    Also there are more exclusive studios supporting Blu-ray.

    So since the video is pretty much the same between the two, I think the larger studio support and greater disc capacity will be a more important factor.

    Just my 2 pennies.
     
  18. ban25

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    Hmm...thanks for the link. That looks like something worth picking up!
     
  19. Bigus Dickus

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    This question is like asking which is better, the power amplifier with 0.001% distortion from 11-30kHz, or the one with 0.0003% distortion from 7-35kHz, all else being equal.

    Well, the technical answer is the second one, obviously. Better specs are better specs, and the second has the potential to deliver superior playback fidelity.

    The practical answer, however, is neither since both are well beyond the limits of human audibility. If testing has shown that format A with good compression can deliver video indistinguishable from the uncompressed master, then more space or bitrate is just spec waiving. OTOH, there might be a real benefit of allowing more lossless multichannel audio in that extra space, though again you have to ask yourself if your room, speakers, electronics, and especially ears are up to the task of distinguing lossless from high bit-rate compressed, and in a highly processed movie soundtrack no less (for reference, I'm something of an audio snob, but even I have the sensibilties to know when enough is enough).
     
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