Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Beta Vs VHS, Part II

Remember the Beta Vs VHS war?

I missed that whole video recorder episode by matter of age and economics (by the time I lived on my own and could afford a video recorder, Betamax had been relegated to a single shelf in the video rental store). My ex-inlaws, however, gambled on Beta's superiority and lost. It wasn't like they were out $200 back then, either. That little baby set them back some serious dough.

Today we've got the whole HD-DVD Vs. Blu-ray battle going on. I've never been bleeding edge electronics (or even leading edge) so I'm content to sit back with my ancient TV and DVD player and wait until a victor emerges. I'm sure I'll catch up with the plasma, hi-def blah blah blah eventually but the slight improvement in picture quality hasn't been enough to reel me in.

Plenty of people have said the quality improvement is amazing and -- true enough -- the display setups at Best Buy look pretty compelling. But judging TV quality is, to me, kind of like judging wine quality. With wine, the taste of anything over, say, $50 bucks off the shelf, is lost on me... my palate is just not refined enough to appreciate the difference. And after a certain point, TV just looks like TV.

If I were to guess where the market is going, though, I'd say HD-DVD. Sounds like we'll know more in a year... probably around the time we're ready for a video upgrade.


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