OK, so after a brief disruption of service, there’s a new blog author in town for the Highly Defined column, and he’s me. To just do a quick intro on the author of the column: this is me!
No wait, that probably won’t suffice. But to assuage those videophiles in the house, here are a few things about the gear I watch this stuff on. I’ve got a Toshiba HD-A1 (I had the XA1 for a couple of weeks, then I came to my senses and realized that this was WAY too much money to spend on a DVD player, hence the ex…hange). I’ve also got another Toshiba for upconverting purposes, but the fact that it’s got a region-free remote control hack at least gives me the chance to watch the uncut Kill Bill or House of Flying Daggers in DTS, never mind that any day now, I’m getting the new 2 disc Special Editions of the entire James Bond set from Amazon UK…
…getting off topic, stay on target…
Back to brass tacks. I’ve got a Sony DTR-G800 and Sony speakers to match (they’ve done me well so far for about 2 and a half years, what can I say Sony haters?), and a Sony 60” XRD set to boot. I know, I know, all this early adopting video equipment, what the hell was I thinking, right? As it turns out, I lucked into a great deal on the XRD, and as far as the player goes, well, I had the disposable income and was succumbing to peer pressure, so there you go. And the results?
Not too bad, all things considered. The disc loading times were a bit of a shock to me (like everyone else) at first, but after awhile, I realized I HAD to get a receiver with HDMI, hence the Sony for that feature plus it’s cheapness. And watching Apollo 13 for the first time really showed me a difference on HD as opposed to the SD/IMAX version on the Anniversary Edition from just recently. In between that and the rocket launch, I’ve been hooked ever since. So why not get the Samsung Blu-Ray? I’ve got several reasons, the first being I have a wife who would get more than a little pissed at that notion, especially since we’re saving up to buy a car, and the rough equivalent of a mortgage payment for a DVD player is simply too much. Besides, with all the reports of Best Buy thuggery and Sammy player buggery, what’s the point in diving in at this point? Moreover, if I’m going to double-dip on Blu discs, why not port over the extras from the SD versions? HD-DVDs are doing this now, so what’s the problem? You’re wasting my time, cabinet space and (possibly) money by not doing something prudent and consumer-friendly.
Now for those of you who frequent the AVS Forums, you’re probably saying to yourself, “this guy is an HD troll, he doesn’t know anything about picture quality, and more studios support Blu-Ray,” etc., etc. until you’re blue (pun intended) in the face. And there’s probably some truth to some of those comments. But at the end of the day, our dollars are all the same, and keep in mind that it’s barely been 90 days since we first saw the introduction of commercially available high definition digital video on disc, regardless of what it’s called. You can convince me that one format is better and it’s not the one I have right now, but remember, it’s not for you or I to say right now.
So much for a graceful introduction, right?