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Thread: Blu-ray Hardware Specs Playing Game of Catch-up

  1. #1
    admin's Avatar
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    Nov 2001

    Default Blu-ray Hardware Specs Playing Game of Catch-up

    Nov. 1 is supposed to be a big day for Blu-ray Disc. As mandated by the Blu-ray Disc Association, any set-top player certified after Oct. 31 must meet Blu-ray profile 1.1 specifications, bringing all Blu-ray manufacturers under the same guidelines to support Blu-ray special features.

    Note that the Nov. 1 date is only for mandatory profile 1.1 support - this does not include BD Live (Internet content with gigabyte storage), which is only supported by profile 2.0. HD DVD already includes most the features of 1.1 and 2.0 in it's original spec (like PiP, internet content ... titles like 300 or Heroes have already started to use these features). When 1.1 and 2.0 rolls out, Blu-ray will have more persistent storage than HD DVD (most HD DVD players have 128 MB, whereas BD 1.1 requires 256 MB and 2.0 will have a full GB - the Xbox 360 add-on drive has 192 MB currently). Persistent storage is used to store things like bookmarks, downloaded content ...

    What will happen to people who own 1.0 players? Well, most of them can get a software upgrade which will add some of the new software interactive features. People who own 1.0/1.1 players might even be able to upgrade to 2.0 through software if their player has enough persistent storage and an Ethernet port, otherwise it goes down to a hardware issue which mean no upgrade to BD Live. The upgrading process is a firmware update, and if the player does not have Internet connection (very unlikely if it's a 1.0/1.1 player), then it means downloading the firmware on your computer, burning to CD/DVD and then inserting the disc into the player ... not exactly something that your average consumer will feel at ease with.

    Is there a chance that future Blu-ray movies won't play on your 1.0 or 1.1 player? Yes. Or at the very least, the extra features that require 1.1/2.0 will fail to work, or produce weird playback problems. If people are really stuck with an 1.0 or even 1.1 player that can't be upgraded, they will have to buy a new 2.0 player to benefit from the full set of Blu-ray features, which is quite ridiculous since these player are not even a year old yet.

    The main reason that Paramount quoted for dropping Blu-ray was the confusion over profiles - they had to test each title under each profile, but the need for 1.0 compatibility meant that titles might have to be limited in extra features. What they did was to produce the HD DVD version of the title first with full features, and then port that over to Blu-ray and remove features that don't work. Even then, it did not guarantee that the movie will work on all players, since there are so many versions out there. Their stance of dropping Blu-ray for 18 months make sense, since by then, the profiles would have been settled and most people would have 2.0 players by then.
    Last edited by admin; 29 Sep 2007 at 02:50 PM

  2. #2
    Hyperactive camj979's Avatar
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    Feb 2006
    Ice Fields


    Hey admin..I don't know if anyone's ever metioned this, but these news articles you find are very informative and helpful. Just wanted to say Thank You for them and keep them coming if you can.

  3. #3
    admin's Avatar
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    Nov 2001


    No problem camj979, I have to go through the news items and stuff to see if there's anything I want to write about on my blog, so I might as well share the interesting links I find here. Speaking of my blog, there's a more extensive write up of this news story there that's up now.

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