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  1. #1
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    D-VHS/D-Theater: Is Our DVD Obsolete Now?

    For those of us who have adopted DVD as a collecting hobby and embraced it as a favorite new format as we buy new titles and replace old VHS ones, are we in danger from this NEW format known as D-VHS and D-Theater? DIGITAL VIDEO TAPE is said to deliver a TREMENDOUSLY better picture than DVD, but the players are like $3000 now and the rare titles are $35-$40 each, I believe...I read a review for "U-571" on D-VHS, which is one of my favorite titles in my DVD collection, and they absolutely raved about the picture and sound quality of the film in D-VHS form..."blowing DVD out of the water" or so I am told...

    Do we need to now run out and dump our DVD players for D-VHS decks (which require rewinding of the films, just like VHS---and degredation of quality just like VHS) and begin relacing the DVDs with D-VHS titles??? I havent even SCRATCHED THE SURFACE of replacing my VHS titles with DVD yet, and now they want me to buy into D-VHS? I thought DVD was gonna be the definitive word on video at least for a long while...anyone else gonna buy into D-VHS/D-Theater?
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  2. #2
    Audio..Nutz Harleyx's Avatar
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    Thumbs down Not A Chance...

    I can't imagine what would have to transpire to make sensible humans switch back to tape. We just did it from VHS to DVD, now this 'new & improved DVHS claims to be the next big thing...WRONG!
    I demoed a DVHS player & tapes. 1 of the tapes (Canada's Olympic Hockey Victory) was previously viewed and there was ALREADY degredation taking place. $50 per tape and it degades already? And a $3000 player on top of it? No thanx.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harleyx
    I can't imagine what would have to transpire to make sensible humans switch back to tape. We just did it from VHS to DVD, now this 'new & improved DVHS claims to be the next big thing...WRONG!
    I demoed a DVHS player & tapes. 1 of the tapes (Canada's Olympic Hockey Victory) was previously viewed and there was ALREADY degredation taking place. $50 per tape and it degades already? And a $3000 player on top of it? No thanx.
    Thanks Harley For All Your Thoughts!

    I agree totally; a format that DEGRADES like tape did/does, PLUS more expensive software and hardware....and only a handful of titles (so far) available? No thanks I would think, would be right. That's disgraceful that you demo'ed a previously viewed D-VHS copy and it showed signs of degredation...horriffic, if I may be so bold.

    From what I understand, you need HDTV to even get the D-VHS benefits so for a majority of enthusiasts and consumers out there, I'm hoping standard DVD will prevail for awhile...I just hope all my efforts in restoring my VHS-to-DVD collection(s) wont be for naught....

  4. #4
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    John; I do not see this disc format destroyed from D-VHS. Somewhere down the road, DVD will offer HD when they can decide on a system to use. Let us hope that the system chosen works well. DVD is a better storage device for things other than motion picture films and as you can see many players are offering more than just D.D./DTS playback of movies. A good question here though is how much deteriation takes place on a recording on D/VHS when the data is now in the digital domain and the tape is played repeatedly. We have Harleyx's experience on this, but I have not scene anybody else on any board comment on this. To my "understanding" of this format, I understand that it holds far more data then a terrestrial broadcast. The D.D. track I believe is just below 600 kbs. So D/VHS might sound better than current D.D. DVD's out there. I know I read recently that DTS will soon be added to D/VHS. The DTS on D/VHS may be 96/24 as well. You just cannot beat handling a 5 inch video/audio disc after years of handling cassettes, but even more so 12 inch Laserdiscs. DVDs are very "Buck Rogerish" with machines and software not unreaseably priced. People like that.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by kelsci
    John; I do not see this disc format destroyed from D-VHS. Somewhere down the road, DVD will offer HD when they can decide on a system to use. Let us hope that the system chosen works well. DVD is a better storage device for things other than motion picture films and as you can see many players are offering more than just D.D./DTS playback of movies. A good question here though is how much deteriation takes place on a recording on D/VHS when the data is now in the digital domain and the tape is played repeatedly. We have Harleyx's experience on this, but I have not scene anybody else on any board comment on this. To my "understanding" of this format, I understand that it holds far more data then a terrestrial broadcast. The D.D. track I believe is just below 600 kbs. So D/VHS might sound better than current D.D. DVD's out there. I know I read recently that DTS will soon be added to D/VHS. The DTS on D/VHS may be 96/24 as well. You just cannot beat handling a 5 inch video/audio disc after years of handling cassettes, but even more so 12 inch Laserdiscs. DVDs are very "Buck Rogerish" with machines and software not unreaseably priced. People like that.
    Kel,

    Thanks for your analysis on this; for me, the days of recording anything for personal use (shows, films) died with the replacement of my VHS for a DVD player. Now, I am only interested in buying the actual original films and not "taping" them off broadcast, cable, whatever...I can understand use of HD video in situations that may call for it -- professional use, video taping services, etc. -- but for me, the home theater enthusiast, I dont care much for the features of recording any longer. So while your insight on the recording capabilities and future capabilities of digital videotape seem justified, I would be purchasing D-VHS for the "night and day" picture/audio quality over DVD or anything else in the films that I would PURCHASE and play back.

    I just dont want to think that we're gonna have to now buy some $3000 D-VHS deck and begin replacing our DVD collections, as DVD-Audio and Super Audio CD almost made us do to our CDs...

  6. #6
    Audio..Nutz Harleyx's Avatar
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    Hang On A Sec...

    John, home recording is still quite important to many.
    The satellite companies now make receivers that can record, and DVD home recorders are becoming cheaper by the day.
    As for the claim of "the picture is 10 times better" with DVHS...I think it's crap. The picture is great...compared to regular VHS, but next to DVD I think one would be hard pressed to find the differences.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harleyx
    John, home recording is still quite important to many.
    The satellite companies now make receivers that can record, and DVD home recorders are becoming cheaper by the day.
    As for the claim of "the picture is 10 times better" with DVHS...I think it's crap. The picture is great...compared to regular VHS, but next to DVD I think one would be hard pressed to find the differences.
    Harley,

    I couldn't agree more. I believe the picture quality differences would be miniscule unless compared on a massivley professional display thousands of dollars in cost; maybe then there would be subtle differences between DVD's picture and the D-DVD.

    I know what you are saying about recording being important to many; all I was saying was that TO ME, recording wasn't a priority; I would buy into a format which promised greatly increased visual and audio performance from store-bought titles before anything....this is all MY opinion and belief system.

  8. #8
    Audio..Nutz Harleyx's Avatar
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    Here's an added twist...

    Japan introduces the DH-DVD.
    30Gb disks, and players available P4 2005

  9. #9
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    I wish all those that claim "night & day" differences ... "blows out of the water" ... "HUGE difference" etc. would cease and desist the total nonsense they're trying to perpetrate on the unsuspecting and gullible unwashed masses. If there is one thing that has become abundantly clear to me after spending my entire lifetime working with audio and video technologies, it's that there simply is no such thing!

    Whether talking about the supposed superiority of one product vs. a competitor - or of one technology vs. another - it makes no difference. Nothing even remotely approaching a "night & day" difference exists.

    As to the subject of this thread: D-VHS is destined for the scrap heap of video technologies according to my personal crystal ball ... and it's proven to be the most accurate one that I know of. When HiDefDVD comes to market (and it surely will), D-VHS will simply fade away, never to be heard from again.
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  10. #10
    Silence of the spam Site Moderator Geoffcin's Avatar
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    D-VHS has been around for a while

    Quote Originally Posted by John Beresford
    For those of us who have adopted DVD as a collecting hobby and embraced it as a favorite new format as we buy new titles and replace old VHS ones, are we in danger from this NEW format known as D-VHS and D-Theater? DIGITAL VIDEO TAPE is said to deliver a TREMENDOUSLY better picture than DVD, but the players are like $3000 now and the rare titles are $35-$40 each, I believe...I read a review for "U-571" on D-VHS, which is one of my favorite titles in my DVD collection, and they absolutely raved about the picture and sound quality of the film in D-VHS form..."blowing DVD out of the water" or so I am told...

    Do we need to now run out and dump our DVD players for D-VHS decks (which require rewinding of the films, just like VHS---and degredation of quality just like VHS) and begin relacing the DVDs with D-VHS titles??? I havent even SCRATCHED THE SURFACE of replacing my VHS titles with DVD yet, and now they want me to buy into D-VHS? I thought DVD was gonna be the definitive word on video at least for a long while...anyone else gonna buy into D-VHS/D-Theater?
    The picture quality is outstanding, IF you have a display capable of 1080i. Unlike VHS, it's quality does NOT degrade, as it is a pure Digital format. Currently it's the ONLY way to record HDTV broadcasts. You still have the burden of not being able to random access at will, and the fragility of cassette tape.

    There really isn't any debate about quality. DVD's 480p quality is a big jump from standard TV broadcast quality, and 1080i is a big jump from that. The new HD-DVD format will likely be even better with 1080p available.

  11. #11
    Forum Regular vr6ofpain's Avatar
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    Thumbs down

    Quote Originally Posted by Harleyx
    I can't imagine what would have to transpire to make sensible humans switch back to tape. We just did it from VHS to DVD, now this 'new & improved DVHS claims to be the next big thing...WRONG!
    I demoed a DVHS player & tapes. 1 of the tapes (Canada's Olympic Hockey Victory) was previously viewed and there was ALREADY degredation taking place. $50 per tape and it degades already? And a $3000 player on top of it? No thanx.
    This doesn't make sense. If it is digital, all that needs to come through is 1's or 0's. I dont see how a few plays can destroy the magnetic tape badly enough for the head to not be able to read the binary data off it.

    DAT did not have the wear problem that analogue magnetic tape had because of this. It is digital! It either gets the data or it does not. I would think it would have to become VERY warm in order for bits of information to start to get lost. Then you might notice some glitches from the missing 1's and 0's.

  12. #12
    Audio..Nutz Harleyx's Avatar
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    well...

    Quote Originally Posted by vr6ofpain
    This doesn't make sense. If it is digital, all that needs to come through is 1's or 0's. I dont see how a few plays can destroy the magnetic tape badly enough for the head to not be able to read the binary data off it.

    DAT did not have the wear problem that analogue magnetic tape had because of this. It is digital! It either gets the data or it does not. I would think it would have to become VERY warm in order for bits of information to start to get lost. Then you might notice some glitches from the missing 1's and 0's.
    I've never researched DAT, but I know how bad the D-VHS tape I saw was.
    Maybe it was written digitally, but after all, it's only on magnetic tape.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Harleyx
    I've never researched DAT, but I know how bad the D-VHS tape I saw was.
    Maybe it was written digitally, but after all, it's only on magnetic tape.
    Bad is one thing, degradation is another. If digital degrades (which it can) the loss is not artifacts or bluriness like analog. You will start missing pixels, or lines, or stop displaying entirely.


    Anyway, as far as "night and day" difference with DVDs, I doubt it. The ability to display 1080i helps, I guess, but I do not believe many films have been recorded with HD cameras (correct me if i'm wrong). So 1080i wouldn't be much more than pre-upscaled 480 line, which good dvd players can do.


    The place where it can get better quality is if the tape is a higher capacity. Instead of a 4.7gb DVD say you have a 20gb tape to work with. You don't have to compress as much, there will be less artifacts. I know on my 50" marantz plasma you can see plenty of artifacts in DVD picture if you look. But higher capacity than 4.7gb discs are on the way, so going back to a cassette seems like a temporary tech. 1080i recording and playback media for those who want it now (and don't want an HTPC i guess?)

  14. #14
    Silence of the spam Site Moderator Geoffcin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ghost_03
    Anyway, as far as "night and day" difference with DVDs, I doubt it. The ability to display 1080i helps, I guess, but I do not believe many films have been recorded with HD cameras (correct me if i'm wrong). So 1080i wouldn't be much more than pre-upscaled 480 line, which good dvd players can do.
    Don't doubt it, it's easy to see right now. 1080 is MUCH better than 480p. The ability to display 1080i is what HDTV is all about. Most movies are still recorded on film stock and then digitally mastered for DVD. 35mm movie film has much more resolution than 480p, or even 1080 is capable of displaying, so there's plenty of information there to display.

  15. #15
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    I can't imagine a sequential format ever making a direct access format obsolete . . .but, that is just me.

    Cassetes were said to do that to LP, however it took another direct access format (CD) to actually win over both.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by IsmaVA
    I can't imagine a sequential format ever making a direct access format obsolete . . .but, that is just me.

    Cassetes were said to do that to LP, however it took another direct access format (CD) to actually win over both.
    Actually, cassettes surpassed LPs because of their portability (prerecorded cassette sales didn't boom until the Walkman came along). The CD retained that portability and added the direct access AND better durability to the mix. You're right though about sequential formats. People are too used to the convenience that direct access offers to go back to sequential media.

    At best, I see D-VHS as an interim format. Not a whole lot of movies have been released in the format, and once HD-DVD/Blu-Ray players and recorders, and HD DVRs become commonplace, then D-VHS no longer has a market role. It's not like VHS, which is on the decline, but has a huge library and user base in place.

  17. #17
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    Wooch, I was refering to the cassette making the LP obsolete, which never happenned.

    While the cassete format became definitively very popular, it never really "killed" Lp's.

    But of course, it is only my opinnion, I have no actual data.

  18. #18
    Forum Regular Woochifer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by IsmaVA
    Wooch, I was refering to the cassette making the LP obsolete, which never happenned.

    While the cassete format became definitively very popular, it never really "killed" Lp's.

    But of course, it is only my opinnion, I have no actual data.
    The cassette passed vinyl in unit sales sometime in either 1982 or 1983 (which coincided with the explosion in Walkman sales). I remember that Stereo Review made a big deal of that milestone.

    The cassette remained the largest selling format until the CD passed it in unit sales sometime in the late-80s or early-90s. Nowadays, vinyl outsells cassettes. And if by some miracle of marketing, multichannel audio or some other yet-unseen digital format catches on, someday vinyl will again outsell CDs.

  19. #19
    M.P.S.E /AES/SMPTE member Sir Terrence the Terrible's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by vr6ofpain
    This doesn't make sense. If it is digital, all that needs to come through is 1's or 0's. I dont see how a few plays can destroy the magnetic tape badly enough for the head to not be able to read the binary data off it.

    DAT did not have the wear problem that analogue magnetic tape had because of this. It is digital! It either gets the data or it does not. I would think it would have to become VERY warm in order for bits of information to start to get lost. Then you might notice some glitches from the missing 1's and 0's.

    Keep in mind, any time a medium (whether it be vinyl records, or analog tape) that touches the playback heads, will degrade from the first play. In terms of DAT, every time the tape touches the playback heads, it sheds tape and leaves it on the heads themselves. Each time it does this, it introduces errors of which are corrected during the decoding process. Sometimes the errors are too large for the internal system to correct, and you have dropouts. DAT players also suffers from from bit dropout even during DAT to DAT transfers. So inspite of the fact it is digital, it still suffers the same problems analog tape does. That also goes for D-VHS. I was an early adopter. While the picture quality was head and shoulders above regular DVD, it suffered from dropouts in both picture and audio, tape getting wrapped around the drum heads, pixelation, you name it.

    As good as the picture is(and it is VERY good) it will not replace DVD's ever. Only HD-DVD or Blue Ray will do that
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  20. #20
    BooBs are elitist jerks shokhead's Avatar
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    Put the tape in the bedroom for just incase. Tape is dead and it might not be much longer for disc's. Oh i know,thats bs but look how fast all other tape died when it really started.4-track was fast,8-track was fast and casette,i remember those.

  21. #21
    Forum Regular royphil345's Avatar
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    There's a place for it...

    Of course people with HD setups and enough money are going to want something that records HD. I would. This is what the powers that be came up with for now. I'm sure the future will be some sort of HD DVD. They just have to figure out how to get more data on the disks and come up with a standard. Hopefully, you'll still be able to play regular DVDs in the thing!!!

    Sad truth is, HDTV is happening now. Since DVD isn't HD, it's pretty much obsolete already. I know I feel uncomfortable spending money on DVDs these days knowing this. Once they come up with a format as convenient as DVD for HD we should be set for a while though I would think.
    Last edited by royphil345; 01-01-2005 at 06:11 AM.

  22. #22
    Silence of the spam Site Moderator Geoffcin's Avatar
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    I don't feel uncomfortable at all buying DVDs

    Quote Originally Posted by royphil345
    Of course people with HD setups and enough money are going to want something that records HD. I would. This is what the powers that be came up with for now. I'm sure the future will be some sort of HD DVD. They just have to figure out how to get more data on the disks and come up with a standard. Hopefully, you'll still be able to play regular DVDs in the thing!!!

    Sad truth is, HDTV is happening now. Since DVD isn't HD, it's pretty much obsolete already. I know I feel uncomfortable spending money on DVDs these days knowing this. Once they come up with a format as convenient as DVD for HD we should be set for a while though I would think.
    Yes, HD is better; but DVD's 480p resolution is for most people, more than enough, and I think it will be the most used for many years to come. The marketing guys are going to try to suck as much $$$ out of HD-DVD for a few years, and this is going to mean that HD-DVD players are going to be very expensive to begin with. We saw this with SACD, until they figured that nobody but a few audiophiles were going to pay the extra $$$ for them. Now SACD is much cheaper for the player, but the software is about 50% more. (and for no good reason I might add) Consumers have been very slow to buy at this premium price, and SACD looks to remain a small niche product for the foreseeable future.

  23. #23
    Forum Regular royphil345's Avatar
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    You're right...

    Think it's going to be a few more years before alot of people gets HDTV. And probably a couple years after that until the new HD disk gets affordable and reliable. Of course the DVD format will remain popular for long after that. Guess the poorer you are, the farther ahead you look?!!! Felt secure buying CDs because they said, "Hey, this is it!!!" " Perfect as far as the human ear is concerned". Though, now they say HDCD is better... hmmm... anyway... I do feel just a little silly buying the DVD format when there's going to be a HDTV sitting in my living room sometime during the next couple of years. When I have a HDTV, I'm gonna' wanna' see a HD picture. Don't think I'll be alone in that either. Think a HD video disk format will take hold quicker than something like HDCD. The average Joe with average Joe audio equipment isn't going to hear a difference between CD and HDCD or understand at all why he should stop buying CDs and pay more for HDCDs. Especially when they won't even play in his car!!! Over the next few years however, the average Joe is going to buy a HDTV, and when he turns it on, he's gonna' wanna' see a HD picture.

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