With the HD DVD/Blu-ray format war being over, the new “war” if you will is the one between digital delivery of movies, versus good ol’ optical media. We want to know how you feel about this. Do you prefer buying movies using Apple TV, thus avoiding a trip to the local Target? Or are the type of person who prefers all the bells and whistles that something like a Blu-ray disc has to offer (7.1 lossless audio, pure 1080p video)? I think it is safe to say that we are moving towards a digital download lifestyle, but with current broadband speeds in the USA, we think that it might be a while before it can compete with optical. Your thoughts?
Apple has quietly made a subtle change to the Apple TV movie experience. Previously, you were able to rent standard definition and high definition movies through Apple TV, and obviously, those rentals would expire if left unwatched for 30 days, or within 24 hours of you starting the movie. However, people have been asking for movie downloads since Apple TV Take 2 launched. Well, all that has changed, as Apple has come to an agreement with movie studios that will see new movies available for purchase and download on the same day that they are released on DVD.
The downside to all this? Well, for starters, you can’t buy the HD versions of these movies, despite the fact that you can rent them in HD. If you have an HDTV, we are guessing that you prefer your movies in HD. Also, for a similar price, you could just buy the movie on disc, and get all the extra special feature videos that are lacking on the iTunes download. Oh well, I guess we should just be happy that we are seeing progress.
Start-up company ZeeVee has a device that allows high-def web video and other content from your computer to be transmitted to any HDTV. Hook ZvBox to your monitor and it will broadcast to channel ZV, then goes through your cable. The company calls it “localcasting.”
CEO and co-founder Vic Odryna said, “...since ZvBox provides a duplication of what you see on your monitor, anything you can do on your computer you can now do on your HDTVs.”
The privilege doesn’t come inexpensively. Available in June, you can pre-order at Amazon for $499.99. At that price, it should turn any TV into HD.
Read More | ZeeVee
Hey, remember that HP HDX Dragon PC that we unboxed a few months ago? Well, HP has gone and upgraded the specs on that puppy, and they want us to give one of them to you guys. Not just the computer, but a few Blu-ray movies, a few PC games, and a bunch of software too. All in all, if you were to purchase everything we are giving away on your own, you’d end up spending somewhere around $5,196.00. Yeah, I said it. Go ahead and read that again.
No, here is the real kicker. Now only are we here at Gear Live giving away one of these 1080p beasts, but thirty other sites are also going to be giving away the exact same package, including our friends over at ArsTechnica, Lockergnome, JKOnTheRun, and Jake Ludington’s MediaBlab. That means you have 31 chances to win. Seriously. That’s why we are calling it 31 Days of the Dragon.
Now, each site is going to set their own criteria for how they are going to run things, and we will be announcing what we will be doing soon. Our giveaway date for the HDX Dragon is June 7, 2008. You’d better keep it locked here, peeps. Oh, and anyone in the world is eligible to win.
Hit the break for the full scoop on everything we are giving away, which other sites are also giving these away, and an unboxing video of the HDX Dragon.
Read More | 31 Days of the Dragon
Designer Giorgio Armani isn’t satisfied with a mere cell phone that features his name. He and Samsung presented his premium 120Hz full LCD HDTV at the Milan International Furniture Fair going on this week. Claiming that the inspiration came from his new 2008/09 Armani/Casa Home Furnishings Collection, the television comes in 46 and 52-inch models. Apparently his Brahms tea table was specifically designed to hold the TV. No price is available as yet, but we are still figuring out which came first, the TV or the table?
Read More | Luxury Launches
Following the likes of Wal-mart, Best Buy, and Future Shop, Amazon is giving customers a $50.00 credit for any HD DVD Player bought on its site before February 23. If you were one of those that purchased from the company, you might have received an e-mail from them that stated:
“New technologies don’t always work out as planned. We at Amazon.com value our customer relationships more than anything and would like to support customers who purchased these players by offering a credit good for $50 off any products sold by Amazon.com…”
The offer stands until April 9 and the credit can be used for Blu-ray players or more HD products, many of which are up to 60% off on Amazon.
Read More | CNet News
Pandigital has been making digital photo frames for a while now and has just come out with one for your kitchen. This 720p HDTV includes a digital cookbook for those who want to see what dinner should actually look like. Wall mountable, it also comes with an under cabinet mount and stand for counters. When you want to use it for fun stuff, it will support JPEG, Motion JPEG, MPEG 1, MPEG 4 and AVI formats. With 512MB of memory, you can add to it with its 6-in-1 card reader. Think gourmet on this one with its price of $399.99.
Read More | Digital Tech News
Although many companies are exploring the glories of 3D TV and consumers are paying the price for it, Korea has come up with the Samsung 3D Plasma for ordinary folk. The PAVV Cannes 450 comes in both 42 and 50-inches with a 30,000:1 ratio and will work with high performance 3D software and geeky glasses. Expect to spend ~$1,850.00 and ~$2,656.00 respectively. An HD version is also available for ~$4,145.00. Here’s hoping that “Captain EO” becomes available to go with one of our fave types of technology.
Read More | <3 yen
Well, with the news that HD DVD had been killed by Toshiba, you knew that it was only a matter of time before the Xbox 360 HD DVD player was eliminated as well, right? Well, the time has come, as Microsoft sent us the following update:
As a result of recent decisions made by Toshiba, Hollywood studios, and retailers, Microsoft plans to withdraw from HD DVD. Xbox will no longer manufacture new HD DVD players for the Xbox 360, but we will continue to provide standard product and warranty support for all Xbox 360 HD DVD Players in the market. As we stated earlier, we do not believe this decision will have any material impact on the Xbox 360 platform or our position in the marketplace. HD DVD is one of the several ways we offer a high definition experience to consumers and we will continue to give consumers the choice to enjoy digital distribution of high definition movies and TV shows directly to their living room, along with playback of the DVD movies they already own.
Okay, well, shouldn’t that be “HD DVD was one of the several ways…”? So, now that we know that the Xbox 360 HD DVD player add-on will no longer be manufactured, if you really really want one, they can now be had for $49.99. That is 75% off of it’s original price, for those of you keeping track. So if you want a piece of recently outdated technology, now is your chance.
Read More | Bloomberg
Sony has added the Bravia F series to its line. It includes a 32-inch WXGA and 40 and 46-inch HD LCDS. They have 3000:1 contrast ratios, 178º viewing angles, and can be mounted on the wall or on an optional metallic stand. With a sapphire black and aluminum design, all they need is a remote that works on a 2.4GHz band so you can sit far back and enjoy the display. How fortunate that they just happen to have one. The F series will be available in Japan on March 25 with prices of 200,000 Yen (~$ 1850.00) for the 32-inch, 290,000 Yen (~$ 2680.00) for the 40-inch model, and the 46-inch for 460,000 Yen (~$4257.00.)
Read More | Newlaunches