PDA

View Full Version : Thank God for Blu-Ray



Rii
14-08-2011, 07:37 PM
I've done my fair share of whining about Blu-Ray and the various ways in which it is hostile to me as a consumer, but now that the games industry has demonstrated just how much more hostile it is possible to get, I'm thinking that perhaps I should instead be grateful that Blu-Ray came along when it did. If the format were being finalised today I shudder to think what they would do with it:

- "You must be online to watch this film!" / "Film paused - connection to authentication server lost!"
- Each Blu-Ray comes with an authentication code that ties the film to a global account.
- $$ required to enable playback at a different IP address from the one at which the disc was registered.
- "TV has detected more than two warm bodies in the room, please transfer additional funds."
- Subtitles DLC!

/shudder

Another oblique bonus here is that there's no need to worry about your Blu-Rays being superceded by another format: there won't be another format. This is the end of the 'ownership' line. Yay.

Nalano
14-08-2011, 08:18 PM
You still use physical media?

Rii
14-08-2011, 10:53 PM
You still use physical media?

Dead tree books too!

I like owning media I deem worthy, and in a physical form. I could speculate as to the psychology behind that... but not just now.

Nalano
14-08-2011, 11:21 PM
Dead tree books too!

I like owning media I deem worthy, and in a physical form. I could speculate as to the psychology behind that... but not just now.

Oh, I love (http://i42.photobucket.com/albums/e342/jonmphy/new%20apt/DSC_0274.jpg) books that don't require batteries to read. But I've digitized my music, and for things that are already in digital formats, well...

Xercies
15-08-2011, 11:22 AM
Digital is great, really really great for many people to be honest. Unfortunatly a lot of major companies are making it seem really terrible with all the internet connection needed and the DRM crap. I only get my music from digital because its cheaper, easier, and you get more artists

Mohorovicic
15-08-2011, 01:18 PM
I would pay for hungarian dub DLC.

Nalano
15-08-2011, 03:28 PM
Digital is great, really really great for many people to be honest. Unfortunatly a lot of major companies are making it seem really terrible with all the internet connection needed and the DRM crap. I only get my music from digital because its cheaper, easier, and you get more artists

Thing about DRM is, ten times outta ten there's a way to strip it.

Though, after that whole thing where people's copies of 1984 (!) were removed from their Kindles (http://www.pcworld.com/article/172953/amazon_settles_kindle_1984_lawsuit.html), well...

Rii
15-08-2011, 04:06 PM
Thing about DRM is, ten times outta ten there's a way to strip it.

But I shouldn't have to do that. I want to give the studios money in exchange for a worthy product. It's not like I have to: The Pirate Bay is right there, it's how I encounter most of the films I subsequently go on to buy. And yet the studios don't make it easy by offering at cost a product that is in many significant respects categorically inferior to the version I can get for free.

Of course the games industry is much, much worse. I've avoided pirating games these last few years because I simply can't be bothered. Most games aren't appealing enough for it to be worth jumping through all the hoops required to pirate them; if they're appealing enough that I can be bothered doing so then they're appealing enough to buy sight unseen. But now with industry asking more and more and delivering less and less that equation is changing yet again and will probably yet drive either my return to piracy or abandonment of the core games industry. There are no winners in that scenario, certainly not the games industry.

wcaypahwat
15-08-2011, 04:23 PM
Semi-realated: Picked up a blu-ray movie the other day (triple pack, had BRD, DVD and digital copy). figured since I was at the PC for the evening, I'd watch the digital copy.

first, ridiculous drm meant media player couldn't even access the file. out of date licences due to hardware change blah blah. spent an hour trying to troubleshoot. no luck.

Finaly gave in and unlocked it on iTunes... which apparently can't display full screen video without cutting off access to my second monitor. Proceeded to give up entirely.

Nalano
15-08-2011, 04:41 PM
But I shouldn't have to do that. I want to give the studios money in exchange for a worthy product. It's not like I have to: The Pirate Bay is right there, it's how I encounter most of the films I subsequently go on to buy. And yet the studios don't make it easy by offering at cost a product that is in many significant respects categorically inferior to the version I can get for free.

Of course the games industry is much, much worse. I've avoided pirating games these last few years because I simply can't be bothered. Most games aren't appealing enough for it to be worth jumping through all the hoops required to pirate them; if they're appealing enough that I can be bothered doing so then they're appealing enough to buy sight unseen. But now with industry asking more and more and delivering less and less that equation is changing yet again and will probably yet drive either my return to piracy or abandonment of the core games industry. There are no winners in that scenario, certainly not the games industry.

This is why I like books. Solid, door-stopping books. The Kindle has the same business protocol as gaming: You're paying for a license, not a product. Nobody - nobody - can take away an actual book from you.

I still look at the gaming industry overall with something of an eye-for-an-eye: If they choose to categorize all their customers as thieves, I can choose to categorize all their companies as snake-oil salesmen.

Xercies
15-08-2011, 05:03 PM
The thing is the Kindle has surprisingly brought out a lot of independent books, some books we wouldn't of gotten before. Sure some of them aren't really that great but i have to say some of them really are. The same with music being digital. The thing is...movies haven't really done it as much.

Come on movies could get a lot of money if they just allowed you to download the film to your computer for a price, the major companies for some reason still cling to the idea that the cinema is where movies should go and they really really shouldn't Lots of people want to have films shown at their homes. Even independent people aren't doing this, they still think cinema is where they should go even though it costs more and they get so few screens and the they just get DVD out. Let people download your film for a price on your website or something, have a Steam for movies!

Come on I can't be the only one thinking of this!

Nalano
15-08-2011, 05:12 PM
The thing is the Kindle has surprisingly brought out a lot of independent books, some books we wouldn't of gotten before.

To be fair, Amazon self-publishing makes it ridiculously easy to get a book out - in print form, no less!

Althea
15-08-2011, 05:18 PM
Thing about DRM is, ten times outta ten there's a way to strip it.
Ubisoft DRM isn't strippable. It's gotten around, sure, but it's not removable.

Nalano
15-08-2011, 05:32 PM
Ubisoft DRM isn't strippable. It's gotten around, sure, but it's not removable.

AC2 DRM was circumvented by having it phone "home" to 127.0.0.1. UbiDRM in that regard was no different than a lot of DRM for various production software suites.

Rii
16-08-2011, 12:56 PM
Semi-realated: Picked up a blu-ray movie the other day (triple pack, had BRD, DVD and digital copy). figured since I was at the PC for the evening, I'd watch the digital copy.

first, ridiculous drm meant media player couldn't even access the file. out of date licences due to hardware change blah blah. spent an hour trying to troubleshoot. no luck.

Finaly gave in and unlocked it on iTunes... which apparently can't display full screen video without cutting off access to my second monitor. Proceeded to give up entirely.

Yes, this kind of bullshit exactly.

I have a BD-ROM/DVD-RW drive in this PC and it's almost more trouble than it's worth. The hardware is fine, it's the software side of things that makes me all stabby. Rather than using something sane like VLC I'm forced to use the clumsy and bloated PowerDVD software that came with the drive and which tries to convince me to buy a newer version every time I load the bloody thing and which doesn't let me skip the endless ads/warnings/animations to get to the shit I actually want to see. And it breaks Windows' Aero Glass theme and forces a revert to Basic. And I'm having to use a VGA connection to my display because it won't output over DVI. Argh.

wcaypahwat
16-08-2011, 01:08 PM
BD-roms are that bad huh? I was thinking of picking one up at some point, but I guess I'll skip that now. Guess I'm sticking with DVD for now, since I don't have the space for a PS3 or standalone player.

Rii
16-08-2011, 01:34 PM
BD-roms are that bad huh? I was thinking of picking one up at some point, but I guess I'll skip that now. Guess I'm sticking with DVD for now, since I don't have the space for a PS3 or standalone player.

The problem is that Blu-Ray hasn't been cracked as thoroughly as DVD was early in the piece: prospective software vendors still have to draw a license from the Blu-Ray Disc Association and adhere to their conditions. Actually I'm not even sure if the problem at this point isn't that it can't be done as that major players like VLC can't afford to do it on account of America having decreed that circumventing DRM (aka using the product that you've paid for) is a crime. Thanks, land of the free! There are various workarounds but from I've seen none of them are one-button hassle-free. With hassles being precisely what one is attempting to avoid I've never bothered going down that particular rabbit hole to discern the finer details.

Re: the PS3 as a Blu-Ray player, it's still one of the best options out there, but something to be aware of is that units manufactured in 2011 and beyond will no longer do Blu-Ray over component video: it's HDMI only from here on out. Apparently my 1080p display is no longer good enough for Blu-Ray, what with it only having Component/VGA/DVI connections. Blu-Ray is a DRM and advertising format with - if you're lucky - a film tacked on as an afterthought.

cjlr
19-08-2011, 01:19 AM
I bought a BD-RW drive for my PC several years ago. Yeah. Good money spent there. Since now it looks like we will never see physical BD game releases (for PC), and the blank media are still crazy expensive - a high-cap flash drive is no worse a deal.

As to watching anything, well... I had to pirate the software to do so, being stubborn and cheap. Works alright, but, what a pain in the ass. I also own a PS3, so I use that for watching in my living room with the home theatre. The PC's in my room, so I guess it's good to have the option.

I only have a very small number of actual movies and such on BD, though. In the large majority of cases, it's not much of an improvement - certainly not when dealing with any but the most high-profile or most recent titles. When your receiver can do a reasonable job of video and audio upscaling I still don't see the Blu-Ray premium as being worth it over good old DVD.

BDs have slightly less restrictive region locking, though, which is I suppose a tiny plus.

Rii
19-08-2011, 04:11 PM
BDs have slightly less restrictive region locking, though, which is I suppose a tiny plus.

It's a huge plus in my case actually, as it means I can import Blu-Rays from Europe often cheaper than I can buy DVDs locally. Of the couple dozen Blu-Rays I own at least half of those are because it was the cheaper option rather than because I thought the film would particularly benefit from being rendered in 1080p.

wcaypahwat
19-08-2011, 04:27 PM
It's not so much the pricing down here I find an issue with (between big W and various video stores you can get almost anything except the latest releases for less than $10), It's a massive lack of foreign films available. Apart from the small shelf section at JB, or ordering from madman, there's just nothing around.

I guess turfing out a couple of my old consoles and grabbing a ps3 might be worth it after all. The looser region restrictions do sound quite appealing.

Rii
24-08-2011, 05:40 AM
It's not so much the pricing down here I find an issue with (between big W and various video stores you can get almost anything except the latest releases for less than $10), It's a massive lack of foreign films available. Apart from the small shelf section at JB, or ordering from madman, there's just nothing around.

Yeah, alas a lot of older 'foreign' films don't have Blu-Ray releases either. Von Trier's Breaking the Waves is one title I'm unable to source at a palatable price, for example.


I guess turfing out a couple of my old consoles and grabbing a ps3 might be worth it after all. The looser region restrictions do sound quite appealing.

Especially with the recent price drop and all. The PS3 will always be one of the better Blu-Ray players because of its enormous userbase (relative to any other single model) and ongoing support. It is the reference point against which all Blu-Ray discs are tested.

The remote issue may be something to consider depending on your setup, though. Unlike most other Blu-Ray players and AV devices the PS3 uses Bluetooth rather than IR for remote communication so most 'universal' remotes won't work with it, nor does the PS3 come with a remote of its own (other than the gamepad, which is functional but a little ungainly for the purpose) as standard, although a bespoke Sony Bluetooth remote is available.