Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sat 7th Mar 2009 23:47 UTC
Mac OS X Thanks to Ars Technica, we've got some Snow Leopard goodness for you. As always, Apple is quite secretive about its upcoming operating system, so even though test builds are released every now and then, information is scarce. An Ars reader has given some more insights into the latest Snow Leopard build, released on Friday.
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Any news on the Blu-Ray front?
by chiwaw on Sun 8th Mar 2009 05:32 UTC
Member since:

Any chances I can upgrade my Mac Mini media center to a Blu-Ray player?

Reply Score: 0

kaiwai Member since:

Any chances I can upgrade my Mac Mini media center to a Blu-Ray player?

The number of people I know with BluRay players could fit inside a telephone booth with enough room left over for a disco ball and a 6 burner BBQ. BluRay is over rated - unlike DVD, there is no material benefit to the average user who isn't exactly an audio or video aficionado. With DVD's there was immediate difference; no rewinding, no deterioration, improvement in quality, longer shelf life etc, things end users really cared about.

As for Apple, they're banking their future on increasing bandwidth and downloadable movies - and IMHO that is where it'll be. Physical media will be gone in 10 years when we find that the average person will be purchasing via their set top box the movies they want at the time they want. Bandwidth, not optical media, will be king.

Reply Parent Score: 4

Notwo Member since:

I've got a Bluray player and I've got a nice TV to go with it. While you can watch upscaled stuff on the TV fine enough, it is rather apparent between 480p and 720p+ without much effort and it's not simply because the set is a poor upscaler, since it isn't. Even my clueless mother was able to spot the difference over a visit. I'm also noticing an uptick in friends who are trading up to HD sets and are either considering bluray players or have them now that the price on the actual players are starting to be reasonable. I still think the media needs to come down ten bucks across the board, sure. That's your anecdotal evidence versus mine. Besides on the internet, I've not really heard anyone shit on HD.

Regardless, I don't really think streaming is the end all of be all. I've got Netflix WatchNow and other services on top of downloads all going to my TV. While it's nice being able to have access to OnDemand-like services -- it's still not enough on my own time and terms like it is with a physical disc. I'll always choose having an actual long-lasting hardcopy of films I care about instead of hoping whatever service has it and its quality will equal or be decent enough compared to the physical alternative. Currently streaming services don't look very good at all on my television and they lack things like optional subtitles, which is actually very important in this household.

Sure bandwidth can increase over time and will have an effect on quality, technical issues like delivering subtitles can be overcome -- I still doubt that this golden age where streaming will be all things to all people will ever come to pass. Let's say that bandwidth will be able to match demand, do you really expect all studios to be on board and in agreement on things like licensing to interested sites? I imagine it'll be quite fragmented for quite some time, if not always. I'm not sure that the DRM issue will ever go away (as much as I'd like it to) for actual *paid downloads* of films just due to the sheer money involved to produce a major film. Region coding and such will still be rearing it's ugly head, I'm positive.

But back on track here -- Do you *really* want to be beholden to your network connectivity to watch a damn movie?

On the other hand, I am rather looking forward to the idea of indie companies being able to roll their own streaming services and gaining better exposure for their work.

Edited 2009-03-08 08:40 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 1

thebluesgnr Member since:

So what? This is Apple we're talking about here, not Dell or HP.

Blu-Ray is significantly better than DVD. People don't buy a Mac because they want a cheap good enough solution, they buy them because they want the best experience.

Reply Parent Score: 3