HD-DVD burners are indeed available. there are currently 3 models available in N. America. Sorry, I don't have model numbers handy, but one is a standard desktop internal 5.25" hh form factor, tray loading drive. The other two are slimline notebook/portable drives. One of them is slot-load, the other tray load. The slot-load unit is available only in Toshiba notebooks. The other two are available as white-box OEM, the 5.25" hh unit also comes in a retail package. All have SATA interfaces.
Do some searching, they are hard to find, but they are available.
Here's a picture of some media hanging on a rack at a local CompUSA. I snapped it last week with the iPhone just to disprove a friend of mine who claimed they don't exist and neither does the media. CompUSA is going out of business (good riddance), but I was in there looking for something and figured I'd take a picture of the HD-DVD media while I happened to walk by it. They had a tag for the retail HD-DVD burner on the shelf below it at floor level, but no drives. Price was $599.
Blu-Ray is Sony. Enough said.
I would rather go back to floppies than participate in another beta/vhs war.
I've always thought it's about the quality/price of the product not a brand.
BTW, Sony's Beta was far better then VHS:), and it's a shame that the price has won over the quality.
The problem is the licensing fees Sony charges for it's closed, proprietary formats.
If Beta had won home videos would still cost $89.99
Hmmmm, well said CrewPix
What is the present "blueray" licensing situation.
I don't see any major difference in price over HD-DVD
Current licensing structures between Blu-Ray and HD-DVD are pretty similar to DVD and to each other. The real issue right now is that studios are pushing the prices of HD discs up, charging a premium over conventional DVD. Many believe that prices are going to drop as the formats become more widely accepted... I don't.. I unfortunately think that the higher prices are here to stay... Just like higher prices held for CD and DVD formats over cassette tape and VHS predecessors.
Mainly because it's easier, as I mentioned, the capability to author is already included in DVD Studio Pro, and from what I've read, authoring BR is a pain.
Also, from what I've seen the images are basically impossible to tell apart. So in the end, I'm not concerned with putting tons of extras (not impressed with the extra 10gigs on BR), I just want to put the HD movie on the disc in the easiest way to incorporate to my current workflow (which is Apple/DVD Studio Pro).
There's a lack of HD-DVD burners for several reasons...
1. Toshiba is making most of the guts for HD-DVD drives and have allocated the bulk of those parts to their set-top boxes and HD-DVD ROM drives that are OEM sold such as the Xbox 360 add-on. This makes business sense because that's where the money is. Pushing the part of the format that consumers will use is the only way the format war can be won.
2. HD-DVD writable media is/was generally not available. Some came out with the first HD-DVD burning laptops but they have long since vacated most retail stores and online retailer inventories due to lack of burners. Apart from Toshiba, nobody was really willing to make the writable media at the time so that part of the format was pretty much guaranteed to be stillborn. Now I think there are two or three companies selling the media in Asia. Since Blu-Ray burner sales are insignificant due to the costs of ownership, despite having a plethora of products available on the OEM market from companies other than Sony, there's really no market for them to compete in with Sony holding the retail monopoly on the consumer due to their overall push of their HDTV-centric products and their HD cameras that use AVCHD which can be played back in their stand-alone players without even running the footage through software first. Sony Blu-Ray players also support multimedia format such as JPEG and MP3 while HD-DVD players unfortunately have no support for anything other than CD/DVD/HD-DVD playback so burning a disc with media files is a waste of time if you have an HD-DVD player though I suspect it might be possible to upgrade them via software to get additional multimedia functionality such as WMA/MP3/etc until hardware decoding is worked out.
3. Doing HD video on a consumer PC, even now, is pretty difficult due to the software and CPU/storage requirements that break most of them so there's little demand until the technology works itself out. The new 45nm Pentiums with SSE4 that were pulled off the market are supposed to be a big leap forward in that regard but it will be sometime before they make it into the retail PCs which are just now starting to use the high end and mid-range quad-core chips on fairly out of date boards. Some companies like HP and Gateway have finally switched to boards that support 8GB of RAM but many of the PCs on shelves are using boards as old as three years because the routinely recycle the boards from products that don't sell well or are surplus by swapping out the processor with a newer one or swapping out the memory. Since the new chips won't presently work in existing designs used by the retail PC vendors, that means it will take a bit longer than normal for them to make the switch. Poor performance was a serious issue with the HD-DVD and Blu-Ray burners that first came out so once the PC's are beefed up and the compatibility issues worked out, you can expect the possibility of a comeback for HD-DVD-R.
4. Problems were found with initial HD-DVD burner products that resulted in serious compatibility issues between the burners and most HD-DVD ROM drives which means burning those home movies onto HD-DVD discs is not an option, therefore making it a worthless format for consumer use. Right now they are working the bugs out and the writable HD-DVD formats are expected to return to the market next year if there is demand from consumers or Toshiba needs to push the writable media to win the format war.
5. No media production professional needs the format at this point since disc files are copied onto DLT for the replicators to make masters from and they have HD-DVD software simulators that can act as testbeds for the interactive portion of a disc before it is sent to the replicator. A few porn companies have burned their own HD-DVDs but by and large they are replicated overseas in Taiwan and imported back here for packaging.
6. Few IT professionals or consumers will use optical disc media for storage needs anymore with more durable high capacity flash or hard disk media readily available at cheap prices so there's really no place for either format in the data storage market until their capacity increases dramatically with a significant cost decrease for consumers.
7. AACS has been cracked/circumvented so once they come up with a better copy protection scheme or they increase the data specs of the average movie title beyond that of the writable media (expected to happen soon) it is quite possible to copy HD-DVD discs.
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