Want to watch high definition? Well there are a few ways to do it. Probably the cheapest way is to get a good quality progressive scan/upconverting DVD player. One that can boost the DVD image up to 1080p quality. I can already hear all the HI Def fans out there going ballistic with the "That isn't true HD" and all the other comments along that line. They are right, yet for the average person using the average TV, like say a 37inch 1080p TV like mine you won't notice much difference. There are ones on the market that can do just that but you will have to use an HDMI cable to get the top picture. I bought a top quality Panasonic player that also records to DVD,USB Drives and Memory sticks. I figured I could kill 2 birds with one elctronic device.
It works incredibly, as long as you use a HDMI cable and of course are connecting it to a HD TV. I have a 1080p LCD TV and the picture is so good I was amazed. On films that deal with real life there is little difference between the boosted DVD and a BRD. I have a DVD copy of Snow Dogs and a BRD copy as well. I also have a PS3 which has a BRD player in it. I have played both versions at the same time and switched back and forth between them. I noticed little to no difference. I have done the same thing with my copies of Harry Potter and although they both were incredible I would give the nod to the BRD in that case. If I had to guess why I would say it might be because of the CGI effects in Harry Potter compared with the more normal scenes in Snow Dogs. I also think that it depends a lot on how well the companies make the BRDs and the DVDs. A really good DVD could when boosted look better then a poorly made BRD.
Now another option is to either get a PS3 or if you have one use that and ignore the whole first part since you already have a BRD player and a progressive scan/upconverting DVD player.
Some people still don't realize that they have a incredible player right there. It is becomming more and more known and easier to use now that they are making a dedicated remote for it.
But if you happen to have the PS3 gaming system then you have everything you need to watch high deff. and you can just start enjoying all your old DVDs all over again in Hi Def. I list the PS3 second because if you have to start out it is expensive at $400 dollars and up where-as the upconverting/progressive scan DVD players can start at under a $100 for a really good one and way less for a pretty good one. I actually have both since I also wanted a DVD recorder and didn't buy the game system until I could get one at a much reduced price on eBay.
Now the last option that I can think of would be if you could find a really cheap HD-DVD player.
I believe most of them also played and upconverted regular DVDs to a Higher Deffinition format. Like the Blu-ray player the HD-DVD progressively scans the DVD and upconverts the signal to a 1080 signal before relaying it to your TV. I list this option last because the HD-DVD format has been abandoned and won't be supported. So you would be only playing your DVDs on it and possibly some copies of films you might still find at stores on HD-DVD. I keep seeing them even though the format has been dead for a while now. I do believe though that if you have XBOX 360 with the HD-DVD player you can use that as an upconverter for your library of DVDs as well, and it would be a cheaper option.
So if you want to get into Hi Def follow this advice and remember, although the Movie companies want you to go out and buy every movie you have all-over again in Blu-Ray Discs.... DON"T it's a waste since your old DVDs will be almost as good and you will save a ton. If later you become a buff and start to notice the differences in the Hidef discs versus the upconverted DVDs then you will have to do much more research becuase there are differences especially when you get into the larger screens. You will have to know more things like frame rates pf playback ect. But considering they are already talking about 3D tellivisions and Holographic TV I'm not sure I would want to go out and spend thousands getting all new HiDef equipment just to find that in 5-10 years it's all obsolete and now I need to get it all over again in 3D or Holographic discs and TVs. For the average person using the average HiDef telivisions the boosted DVDs will be great and if you slowly get into the BRDs then you will be doing just fine.
High Definition made easy.
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January 29, 2009
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