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HD-DVD already to small

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See this is why I think this format war is idiotic. It has been revealed today that since the HD-DVD can only hold 30Gb the audio bundled with Transformers is only 5.1 and not Dolby TrueHD… 

Indeed, I had the opportunity to attend a special ‘Transformers’ media event with Paramount late last week, and the question was asked almost immediately — why no Dolby TrueHD or uncompressed PCM? The studio’s answer was that due to space limitations on the disc, the decision was made to limit the audio to Dolby Digital-Plus 5.1 Surround only (here at 1.5mbps). Unfortunately, this confirms the long-held theory that the 30Gb capacity of an HD-30 dual-layer HD DVD disc has forced studios to choose between offering a robust supplements package (as they’ve done here) and the very best in audio quality

Now I know all the Blu-Ray fans are going to cheer that this is a victory for Blu-Ray but it isn’t. Blu-Ray doesn’t hold that much more than HD-DVD and it’s not like Transformers is a true Epic the size of Braveheart. If a normal movie is already pushing the boundaries what is going to happen when the next true epic is released? Multiple discs for movies? I don’t think so.

So who feels like paying thousands of Rands for a format that is already becoming obsolete even before it has hit mainstream?

HD DVD Review: Transformers | High-Def Digest

Last Updated: October 17, 2007


  1. abev

    October 17, 2007 at 09:57

    20gigs more form bluray is almost double and will certainly help. lets not forget the multilayer BD’s coming in at 100gb and 200gb!


  2. Banana hammock

    October 17, 2007 at 10:27

    Yip, and all you need is a simple firmware upgrade for the BD players.


  3. LazySAGamer

    October 17, 2007 at 10:29

    Yeah but Transformers is only about 1 1/2 hours where Braveheart was about 4 hours. So nearly double is not nearly enough.

    Lets not forget that those multilayer BD’s are still in theory unless I am mistaken


  4. Fred

    October 17, 2007 at 10:44

    By this time next year it will be over and Blu ray will be the clear leader , ok i know normal dvd still outsells it by a hell of a margin , but prices of blu hardware and movies will drop. How long did it take vhs to be taken over by dvd?


  5. abev

    October 17, 2007 at 12:45

    Multilayer BD’s are more than just theory and many phyiscal examples have been created.
    In terms of “epics” (I cant stand Braveheart) that need more space, a four hour movie will probably incur added compression to fit on the disk, the same how it is done for current dvd’s or else than can stick long ass movies on a multilayer disk!


  6. Banana hammock

    October 17, 2007 at 12:48

    Hey Lazy,

    I believe that the 100Gb BDs are ready for production, but don’t ask me for a link.

    Besides, with HDDVD having a new 51Gb disc in the wings, and the fact that most movies are about 2 hours. I think you will be getting most movies with full sound before you know it on both platforms.


  7. XennoX

    October 17, 2007 at 13:06

    Oh god here we go again. No one sees the light. Microsoft wins no matter what the outcome is. They were smart in releasing a console that has a plug-in HD-DVD drive. So if HD-DVD loses, well then all they do is produce a Blu-ray variant, sure it will cost them a hell of a lot to change production over, but we all know Microsoft has money many don’t.

    Now on the other hand if Blu-ray loses Sony has to rework the WHOLE system, seeing as the Blu-ray player is built in.


  8. LazySAGamer

    October 17, 2007 at 13:17

    @abev and Banana, yeah I have also read about the multi layer BD’s but I have yet to hear of one being mass produced. Anyway my point is that we are already hitting the limits of the normal HD disc and adding compression or going multi disc kind of proves my point that these things are not needed yet.

    We are having a format pushed on us that doesn’t really offer us enough benefit to take it up. No thanks…


  9. abev

    October 17, 2007 at 13:17

    Why do they need to rework the system? the xbox uses a plugin then why cant the ps3? But it doesnt matter, Bluray will win.


  10. Banana hammock

    October 17, 2007 at 14:33

    Actually XennoX, you couldn’t be more wrong. Sony got it wrong
    with UMD on the PSP but guess what? They didn’t get rid of it, they just publish their stuff on their format.

    If BD loses, PS3 games will still come out on BD, which brings me to Lazy’s comment on us not needing the extra capacity; we do need it, especially for gaming.

    And i don’t care how much money MS has, no company likes to lose money and no company likes to be proven wrong. Plus MS will piss off a lot of people if then now go BD.


  11. Tan365

    October 17, 2007 at 15:13

    100/200gig BDs should resolve ur Braveheart qualms hopefully –>


    Through firmware … the PS3 will be compatible with these BDs. However i havent seen any place stating that the 51gig HD DVDs will be compatible. As we approach the age of people needed TB HDD … It is a natural progression for optical discs to hold a larger capacity. Also, remember that DVD moved from DVD 4,7 to DVD 9 quite rapidly.

    Progression is good and i welcome it.


  12. XennoX

    October 17, 2007 at 18:13

    @ Tan365, when you compare DVD 4.7 and DVD 9 you compare the same medium yet different technologies. DVD 9 is actually dual-layer whereas DVD 4.7 is a single layer. The only reason why the progression from single layer HD formats to the dual-layer was so quick is because they had the technology there.

    That reminds me, I think I should pull up that draft I wrote but never published, about how pathetic this HD war actually is.


  13. Tan365

    October 17, 2007 at 19:05

    I dont really see the point you raised XennoX… the projected BD 100/200gig will be quad layer layer but still Blu-ray Disc. How is this different from moving from DVD 4,7 single layer to DVD 9 dual layer in terms of medium? I see what is happening with BD as progression on the same medium requiring new technological innovation… not so?

    http://www.dailytech.com/Hitachi+Develops+100GB+Bluray+Disc+Compatible+With +Existing+Drives/article9173.htm


  14. Milesh Bhana

    October 17, 2007 at 23:52

    enough with PS3/Blue-Ray vs HD-DVD. This article is about how much space is needed for uncompressed sound. From the looks of it, Blu-Ray as it is, is probably not doing it for all existing releases. Well likely not the longer movies.

    So… if that’s the case, what’s the point? I mean sure you get a 1080p picture on both, but I thought that the point of the upgrade from DVD to HD formats was for 720p/1080p, uncompressed sound for nice high end speakers and much more extras. It seems that in order to deliver the high end sound (which most of us won’t hear anyway), the have to choose between extra content and high end sound.

    Surely they would have known how much space this kind of content would take before defining a new spec ?


  15. LazySAGamer

    October 18, 2007 at 05:37

    @Milesh, that is exactly my point… Neither format seems to satisfy all the requirements… I saw we takea mulligan on this format war


  16. Banana hammock

    October 18, 2007 at 07:51

    You guys just don’t get it, technology moves on, too bad if you don’t like it. But it doesn’t move in leaps and bounds (often) it’s a progression and that’s what’s happening with BD and HDDVD, today they have 50gb capacity and it doesn’t satisfy every need but tomorrow they will be at 100-200gb and will satisfy our needs, and in 2 years they will probably have a TB disc. Who knows, by then we may need even more than that for some new thing we have discovered (Holographic movies?).

    The things is we need competing formats to drive technology and to create a bit of a price war. Otherwise we would go forward very slowly and it would cost us a fortune.

    Don’t complain about the format war, no-one is forcing you into it, if you want to wait a couple of years to see what the winning tech (Note: Winning not Best) is then that’s your right.


  17. LazySAGamer

    October 18, 2007 at 08:15

    @Banana, but the point is that we have better technology already (HVD) but since Toshiba and Sony have the IP rights on HD-DVD and Blu-Ray we are getting those technologies shoved down our throat instead.

    This isn’t about the best tech, this is about which firm greases enough palms…


  18. Banana hammock

    October 18, 2007 at 08:30

    My point exactly, the best isn’t important, only the winner is and we as consumers must make descisions based on who we think is going to win.

    As for HVD, yeah it’s bigger (that doesn’t mean better) but at the moment it’s just protoypes and they project an initial cost of $15,000. That tech is 5 years away from being in our market place. By that time it will be too late. BD or HDDVD would have won the war by then and in 5 years their discs will probably allow for a TB of data.

    And neither Toshiba or Sony are shoving anything down our throats, you don’t want it don’t buy it. I bought a PS3 to play games on, the fact that it has a BD player is nice because i know there is minimal limitation on the size of games and BD movies look a bit better. If BD loses the war i don’t care as long as the PS3 games still come out on BD, ala UMD on the PSP.


  19. Milesh Bhana

    October 18, 2007 at 11:01

    sure enough tech moves quickly, but what i’m saying is, that the powers that be decided it’s HD time, so TVs are now standardised on 720p/1080p, component systems are coming down in price to support Dolby HD in preparation for this new standard. Cool. So why define a format that’s not good enough to deliver what they promised? Both camps are guilty of this.


  20. abev

    October 18, 2007 at 12:28

    Wait we are getting ahead of ourselves here. Has there actuallt been a movie yet that has been compromised on, on the bluray format? The initial story was that Transfomer cant fit on HD DVD without compromising sound. As far as I know there have been no such issues with bluray.

    As for HVD, think about it, it is way more than five years away, I would say closer to ten, at this point it is a early prototype, by the time it reaches the mass uptake levels in global consumerism it will be many years down the line! And as Banana says by that stage who knows where BD and HD DVD will be?


  21. Tan365

    October 18, 2007 at 17:35

    What Banana said was very true. Abev is right as well … how did this go from HD DVD officially having limitation problems to criticism of BD is strange? only on this site, heheehe 😉

    TB HDDs are grossly expensive and having optical disc of that size is abt ten yrs down the line. This makes bringing up HVD a moot point. Anyway, banana & abev pretty much summed it up.


  22. LazySAGamer

    October 18, 2007 at 19:45

    @Tan, have you noticed that I have never liked either HD-DVD or Blu-Ray. I feel they are both useless technologies.

    Neither offer enough of a benefit over DVD to actually justify the cost.


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