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Title: The Draw Between HD Media Word Count: 596 Summary: For those who have not yet settled on which high definition disc to in vest in, this article will help bring several issues to light. Keywords: bluray, hd, player, hidef, coupons, media Article Body: For those who have not yet settled on which high definition disc to in vest in, this article will help bring several issues to light. First of all, the potential video and audio quality remain alike between both formats, HD-DVD and Blu-Ray. The difference lies in the laser that reads the disc; where the former uses the ide ntical red laser used to read DVDs, the latter employs a blue laser that reads only Blu-Ray. Both lasers can decode an identical amo unt of information, called the bitrate. A bitrate can be label ed as the amount of "bits" decoded per second. Generally, the higher the bitrate the higher the q uality of video/audio. So a bitrate of, say, 30mbs (megabytes per second) should be preferable to a meager 10mbs. The average hi-def picture, with its superior clarity and contrast, can maintain a bitrate between 15mbs-35mbs; comp are this with an ordinary DVD, which averages 2mbs-7mbs. With its ability to store and trans mit at a higher bitrate, hi-def med ia easily trumps the quality of DVD. This higher bitrate allows for less compression, and thus can retain most of the clarity from the original master print of a movie; whereas a DVD will look blo wn-up and fuzzy. But the differences between HD-DVD and Blu- Ray begin with how they can be play ed. HD-DVD players have the advantage of backward compatibility , as it can playback DVDs. Blu-Ray players cannot, due to their unique laser, which completely isol ates it from older generation techn ology. But the advantages of Blu-Ray lay in its inherent differen ces. Blu-Ray players come equipped with Java software, which some believe t o allow more interactivity with the user. This gives it the ab ility to have fancier menus and in- depth bonus options, such as picture-in-picture display. At the moment, bugs and slow performance h ave hindered some confidence in its support of Java, where Bill Gates complained that it was not us er friendly enough to be used in PCs. Counter this with HD-DVD, w hich uses Microsoft's own HDi Inter active Format. It allows anyone to author simple content, wh ere Java requires a more intimate k nowledge of scripting. If all the information so far sound s redundant, it is. The only thing that can make or break a hi-def entertainment center does no t stem from the format at all. In f act, it all depends on what you choose to display it on. Be wea ry of interlaced televisions. Rathe r than playing back video at 1080p (progressive), the user gets short-changed with 1080i (interlace d). Progressive scan means that the picture gets scanned upon each frame; this results in a prope rly displayed picture, like a solid photograph, with no aberratio ns. Interlacing occurs when no prog ressive scan exists in the television, and so the picture gets displayed as a series of individua l lines rather than as a single, uniform "photograph." In sh ort, the fine edges in a progressiv ely scanned movie may otherwise appear to be jagged, or e ven fuzzy, on an interlaced display . The only reason to get invested in the so-called format war would be t o avoid a costly personal investment if "your" format ever lo ses. Blu-Ray may be considered to b e the superior technology, as its unique blue laser, while radica lly different and incapable of DVD playback, allows for exciting future developments. HD-DVD, largel y compatible and user-friendly, is considered by some to be a static technology. Lately, however, Toshiba released its plan to marke t the format as cheaper, practical alternative to Blu-Ray. A nd, in the event that you still can not make up your mind, there exists a combo Blu-Ray/HD-DVD/DVD c omputer drive that sells for less t han $300.
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