Monday, October 11, 2010

Exploring the next frontier in Movies...

As a side bonus, my new PS3 is also a Blu-Ray disc player. And I went and bought my first Blu-Ray movie to see for myself what the hype is about. I wanted this to be a true test of the Blu-Ray, so I had to have something to compare it against. Therefore my first BR purchase had to be a movie I already owned on DVD. After much deliberation, I made what should have been the obvious choice from the start, and purchased: Terminator 2: Judgement Day

You might not follow why this is such an obvious choice for me, so let me explain. Starting with the obvious: I already had T2 on DVD and have watched it TONS of times, so I'm very familiar with how awesome it looks on DVD. This gives me a strong control group to test the BR disc against. This is a solid base for comparison. But not the full reason why it was such an obvious choice.

The true test of any new visual enhancement technology is NOT how it replicates the latest visuals. That should be easy since those visuals are being made with the new technology in mind. Filmmakers are shooting their movies with the latest HD or IMAX cameras, whose high resolution capabilities is tailor made for transfer to Blu-Ray. No, that's not a true test. A true test of the visual enhancement is what it can do for visuals that were NEVER meant to be displayed like that.

T2 was released in 1991. This was even before DVDs were developed! Now, the transfer of that movie from VHS (yes, I bought it on VHS) to DVD was amazing enough! But at the time the movie was filmed, Blu-Ray wasn't even a twinkle in Sony or the Blu-Ray Disc Association's eye. So, my eyes already having been wowed by the DVD transfer should fall out of my skull and go to the nearest church and praise God for 40 days and 40 nights if BR is even half as good as it's hyped up to be.

Yesterday, I watched T2 on Blu-ray and I was truly impressed. It wasn't all the special features, or any of the Internet available content. It was just watching the movie. Just the quality of the film transfer itself. I could see individual pores on the actors faces. The sharpness of the image was astounding, the richness of the colors was truly remarkable. I can officially say, I am impressed with Blu-Ray.

Now, it's not as major a jump from DVD to BR as it was from VHS to DVD, so despite my newfound amazement with BR, I am not going to be transferring my DVD collection to BR. Honestly, most of my movies just don't warrant that kind of high-res viewing. But, I can see myself making certain purchases to upgrade the movies that would benefit from it: The Matrix series being another perfect example.

My next purchase to test for BR should also be obvious. Given how awesome the picture looks, there is only one possible next step: Porn!


  1. This may be a stupid question but what are the specs on the television? It does matter.

  2. The only stupid question is the one you never ask.

    TV Specs:
    Brand: Panasonic
    Model: Viera
    Screen Size: 32"
    TV Type: LCD Flat-Panel
    Aspect Ratio: 16:9
    Max Resolution: 1920x1080
    Vertical Resolution: 1080p
    Screen Refresh Rate: 60Hz
    Contrast Ratio: 20,000:1

  3. Hey, we almost have the same tv! Except that mine is a 37" Panasonic Viera with a 120Hz screen refresh. I got it from Amazon:

    It's an awesome tv set. I had it since last December, and so far it's held up exceptionally well. You can see a pic of how it looks in my living room in this blog entry from January:

    What do you think of yours so far?

  4. I love this tv. I just wish I had a decent entertainment center to put it in. Still, the picture is amazing, and the color contrast is sharp. Really sharp!