S&V Poll: Do You Stream Movies or Watch on Disc?

Do you stream? Of course, you do! Everybody streams movies and music these days, even our elderly grandparents. Though the quality of streaming has improved considerably in recent years, it still doesn’t always match the audio and video quality you can get on disc. All of which brings us to the question, do you prefer streaming movies or watching them on 4K Blu-ray Disc? Or maybe it’s a mix of the two. Check the answer that comes closest to describing your situation — and leave a comment to explain your choice.
S&V Poll: Do You Stream Movies or Watch on Disc?
I love watching movies on 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc and do so all or most of the time.
24% (238 votes)
I love streaming movies and do so all or most of the time.
20% (195 votes)
I prefer watching movies on 4K Blu-ray and do so more than half of the time.
14% (140 votes)
I prefer streaming movies and do so more than half of the time.
4% (43 votes)
My movie-watching time is about evenly split between streaming and watching movies on 4K Blu-ray.
19% (187 votes)
I prefer watching movies on 4K Blu-ray and stream less than half of the time.
10% (95 votes)
I prefer streaming movies and watch movies on 4K Blu-ray less than half of the time.
10% (102 votes)
Total votes: 1000

rjmedich's picture

Regarding your 4K Disc vs. Streaming poll: Usually, the picture quality of a 4K UHD disc is noticeably better than what you see on streaming platforms. However, good luck trying to rent a disc anymore.

Even if you do rent from one of the few remaining 4K disc rental outfits, you have to wait weeks or more before you get your movie in the mail.

Really, the best option is buying the disc. But who can afford to buy every single movie they want to see?

Unfortunately, we need to settle for streaming—which is often good enough. If only a platform would deliver Kaleidescape quality for a competitive rental fee. That would be a game changer. But that doesn't seem to be happening any time soon.

SuicideSquid's picture

Hard to answer this poll because I don't have a 4K Blu Ray player. I have a regular blu ray player. Never felt the need to upgrade. Poll also excludes local streaming from a NAS or media centre.

I do about 85% of my watching from streaming services like Netflix and Disney+, about 10% from rips of my DVD collection stored on a NAS, and about 10% from DVD or bluray discs. If I own the physical disc (I am not a collector, I have a bunch of TV shows and maybe 75 movies), I'll watch the disc or stream from my NAS. If it's not on streaming I'll rent a DVD or bluray. Otherwise, streaming for me.

justme's picture

@Minesweeper You don’t have to worry about your connection speed, or compression issues due a bad encode. Hell the 4K that Netflix is streaming right now, looks more like a good Blu-ray, then a 4K UHD disc.

krikboh's picture

Where is the option for "I prefer 4K UHD Discs, but my wife does not understand why we still buy discs and she loves the convenience of streaming"?

rmesick's picture

I don't spend my money on physical media anymore so it's streaming for me.

alchav21's picture

There is a Thread on Blu-ray.com that goes back almost a Decade on this question, and it hasn't been completely answered. The Physical Disc people say the quality can't be matched by Streaming, but I feel it's very Subjective depending on your equipment and setup. My Fiber ISP is fed to a Switch and Ethernet from there to my Sony UHD TV. So I get Rock Solid Streaming Quality and Love It!

Trek1420's picture

I prefer my discs, whether it be DVD, Blu-ray or 4K. I'm a late comer to Streaming but I do occasionally stream a movie. What I hate about streaming is fast forwarding or reversing to get to a particular point. It's a pain in the keester.

prerich45's picture

Audio is the issue with streaming. The audio with streaming sounds relatively tame and compressed compared to a UHD disc. Streaming audio reminds me of HD-DVD.

MrLarry's picture

I am firmly in the 4K Disc camp.

I bought Top Gun: Maverick through the Apple Store and streamed it. Blacks were murky, particularly in the early scene where Maverick arrives at the test hangar and the camera looks over his shoulder at the rest of the cast. The back of Mav's head was just a black blob.

Later, when it was available on 4K disc, I watched the same scene on the same equipment (only difference was the stream was through an Apple TV and the disc was through an LG UHD player) and the difference very obvious. Much better blacks and depth of picture, less blurring in the permitter of the picture and better image quality overall.

But the soundtrack was what struck me. While streaming the scene where he is testing the jet, yes, you can hear some ambience of the cockpit, some rattling etc, and that deep bass. But on disc, you can hear every creak of the metal frame of the plane and the height channels come alive.

Since then I have bought a Zidoo UHD 3000 and I have copied my 4K discs to it. Compared to the disc player, I can't tell the difference between the player and the Zidoo.

I've spent a lot on my home theatre and I want the best quality source material I can get. For me, that is a UHD Disc/file.

dmoor's picture

No option to vote for streaming 4K rips at original quality delivered via Plex or Infuse. My preferred movie streaming choice.

irprzbx366's picture

The realistic graphics and detailed car models in car games create a visually stunning and immersive environment Car Games for players.