|  Jan 28, 2007  |  0 comments

CEDIA 2006 was something of a riches to rags story. We saw many three-chip 1080p DLP projectors announced at prices that were ridiculous and embarrassing, stretching into the many tens of thousands of dollars. And they were introduced with straight faces. Granted, these are high light output designs that can drive enormous screens. But I didn't find these many of these designs particularly interesting. Too many recently announced projectors appear to be aimed at the ultra-wealthy sliver of the market, and don't back up their high prices by offering technical innovation that can't be found in more reasonably priced models. About the only things these announcements did was to make the $15-20K single-chip DLPs seem like they aren't quite as hideously over priced!

 |  Jan 28, 2007  |  0 comments

One of the stories of CES 2007 that didn't make it into <A HREF="http://blog.ultimateavmag.com/ces2007/"><I>UAV's</I> Blogs</A> is Sony's Internet TV, which is a two-part concept that includes an add-on module for its BRAVIA TVs and streaming broadband content provided by Sony's music and movie arms and partners like AOL, Yahoo, and Grouper. The BRAVIA Internet Video Link requires an Ethernet connection and is compact enough that the BRAVIA LCD flat panels can still be wall-mounted with the module in place.

 |  Jan 25, 2007  |  Published: Jan 26, 2007  |  0 comments

Universal Studios, the only Hollywood studio currently supporting HD DVD exclusively, announced that it will release over 100 HD DVD titles in 2007, comprised of new and classic films and television shows. Many will be new titles released day and date with DVD discs, and over 90% of the titles released will be HD DVD/DVD combo discs.

 |  Jan 21, 2007  |  0 comments

Whither SED? That was a question on the minds of many journalists walking through Toshiba's city block-sized booth at CES 2007. As it turns out, Toshiba has sold its stake in the burgeoning flat panel display technology to Canon, its partner in the venture.

 |  Jan 18, 2007  |  0 comments

Netflix has moved into the movie and TV download business with Watch Now, a supplement to its DVD rental subscription that will allow users to stream this content to a computer. Unlike download services that require the download of a large file in its entirety, customers can start watching Netflix' streaming video feeds within seconds.

 |  Jan 04, 2007  |  0 comments

The format war just took and interesting turn as some juicy pre-CES news leaked out to the Internet today courtesy of the New York Times. Next week at CES Warner will be announcing the Total HD disc, which will carry both Blu-ray and HD DVD transfers of a title on a single disc.

 |  Dec 31, 2006  |  0 comments

The Grinch came to steal HD DVD's Christmas a little late this year, as the Internet lit up late last week with the news that a hacker calling him/herself "muslix64" had cracked HD DVD's AACS copy protection with an apparently self-written Java-based utility called "BackupHDDVD." Stories over the 'Net calimed that muslix64 had successfully used the utility to move copies of Warner's <I>Full Metal Jacket</I> (one of the worst looking HD DVDs released so far) and Universal's <I>Van Helsing</I> to his/her hard drive. On top of that, muslix64 released the code to this utility, inviting others to take a crack (pun intended) at copying their own HD DVDs.

 |  Dec 28, 2006  |  0 comments

In late November Comcast began offering on-demand movie titles from every major studio day and date with the films' DVD debut in its Pittsburgh and Denver markets for $4 per viewing. On-demand video availability for major movies has typically lagged 30-45 days behind the DVD release, creating an exclusive window for DVD sales and rentals, which has certainly not helped on-demand's popularity. If this practice extends beyond these markets and to other cable and satellite operators it seems likely that DVD sales will continue to erode.

 |  Dec 22, 2006  |  0 comments

JVC has developed a new optical engine what squeezes 58" and 65" 1080p HD-ILA RPTVs into cabinets with depths of just 10.7" and 11.6, respectively, officially reviving the concept of "big screen" RPTVs that can hang on the wall. THe HD-58S998 will be available in January at an estimated $3,299, while the HD-65S998 will debut in March at approximately $4,199.

 |  Dec 18, 2006  |  0 comments

Even though this format war is a pain in the butt, I have to admit that it's funner to come in to work than it's been in years. I'm getting a charge out of seeing the hardware and seeing my favorite movies come out in HD on a silver disc that I've probably not felt since my Laserdisc collection gave way to DVDs back in the late 90's. To the cynic the next-gen HD formats are an Enron-esque scheme to perpetuate royalty streams and to keep selling movie libraries over and over (and over) again. I acknowledge all that, and say, "hooray!"