I remember when I got my first DVD player (I put an emphasis on “first” because my family has went through more of those than we should have). It was almost like discovering a new world of entertainment in that cardboard box. It was a complete surprise on Christmas morning, something I totally didn’t expect, much less to come with a copy of Bruce Almighty and Freaky Friday to start my now expansive DVD collection. I remember seeing all the ads for the DVD technology on my VHS tapes thinking it wouldn’t catch on, but sure enough I still have a crap ton of my classic and most favorite films on VHS in my closet. Now almost 7 years later, a new technology is on the horizon. After slaughtering HD DVD, Blu-Ray has begun to creep onto the market and much like DVDs did more than half a decade ago, slowly eclipse the DVD market. It may be my 10 year old self speaking here, but I truly don’t see the point in it all. I can honestly say I don’t know a single person that owns a stand alone (not PS3) blu-ray player. I get the advantages of the tech itself (believe me I do, I shop at Target a lot so I see the blu-ray propaganda), in SOME cases the picture looks sharper, the sound sounds better, and it’s supposedly a “better viewing experience”. While that’s all nice and good to have those bells and whistles, it’s not something I’m going to be running out to my car, flooring the pedal and rushing to my nearest Best Buy to adapt. Whereas the transition between VHS and DVD was noticeable (those bulky tapes have around a 4-play-through life span and were considerably hefty, there’s not as much a difference between DVD and Blu-Ray to warrant the $200 + adaptation charge. I’m basically expected to pay $150-$200 for a player (at cheapest, and trust me, buying the cheaper Sony Products never turns out well) and then around $25-$30 per film that I enjoy. That being said, the prices have come down significantly on blu-ray discs over the past few months, a fact that makes the pill significantly easier to swallow. It’s really just a transition from a disc to a shinier and better looking disc.
Plus, there are few feelings on earth as painful as knowing you’re part of a dying trend. It’s almost the feeling of seeing a ticking time bomb reach zero when you see the blu-ray selection grow larger and larger in Target or Best Buy. Plus, I’m a college student, I rarely buy new films, and making a $200 + investment right now to continue my movie loving habit in such a hectic lifestyle doesn’t make a lot of sense. My TV in my room in my dorm MAY be HD-compatible (it’s a brand new VIZIO), and I’m fairly sure our main den TV at my house can support the tech. I would like to live in a world where both standard definition and high definition could both be supported equally, but it looks like Blu-Ray may be just another inevitable speed bump in the road of home entertainment.