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View Full Version : Maybe physical media isn't as dead as some people think.



Ian Jane
12-27-2011, 06:53 PM
The Hollywood Reporter has an interesting article here (http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/netflix-home-entertainment-dvd-blu-ray-profits-276421?utm_medium=twitter&utm_source=twitterfeed) about sales vs. expectations in regards to DVD and Blu-ray, Netflix's attempted suicide and online streaming.

One quote that stands out:

“Blu-ray had a remarkable year, with the format showing significant growth and bolstering overall home entertainment consumer spending for the first time in three years,” said Craig Kornblau, president of Universal Studios Home Entertainment. “New releases benefited tremendously, with female-targeted comedies like Bridesmaids hitting the masses and surpassing industry expectations. Catalog also saw impressive gains, as evidenced with the stellar Blu-ray debuts of such huge fan favorites as Scarface, Star Wars and The Big Lebowski. With the number of Blu-ray homes exceeding 30 million and growing—and with more than half of first-week sales of physical products now credited to Blu-ray—the consumer appetite for high-def movies has never been more palpable.”

As someone who will cling to physical media as long as I can, this is good to hear and it's also interesting that catalogue titles were responsible for a lot of the sales in the last quarter.

Shawn Francis
12-27-2011, 08:31 PM
I'm old school, and actually prefer collecting movies I can hold in my hand, and stack in a cabinet. I just hope all this streaming crap doesn't replace DVD's until I'm either dead or too old to care and collect.

Paul Casey
12-27-2011, 08:35 PM
I'm old school, and actually prefer collecting movies I can hold in my hand, and stack in a cabinet. I just hope all this streaming crap doesn't replace DVD's until I'm either dead or too old to care and collect.

What about going blind? Would streaming media be ok then?

Shawn Francis
12-27-2011, 08:49 PM
Hmmm, good question. Because I COULD listen to it. But no streaming media will NEVER be okay with me in any condition I'm in. I suspect even when I'm dead I will NOT be okay with streaming media. I think I might even petition God to take streaming media out of the minds of men. Have I used "streaming media" too much? Keep saying streaming media and it doesn't even sound like a word anymore.

Paul Casey
12-27-2011, 10:35 PM
Keep saying streaming media and it doesn't even sound like a word anymore.

That's 'cause it's two.

Shawn Francis
12-27-2011, 11:32 PM
You know what I mean. Go, ahead, say it, 'streaming media, streaming media, streaming media, streaming media. streaming media.'

Paul Casey
12-28-2011, 12:19 AM
You're right. I end up saying Screaming Mimi.

Roderick
12-28-2011, 01:17 AM
I think you guys are just having trouble understanding your own New England accents.

Paul Casey
12-28-2011, 08:19 AM
While very possible, I generally don't type mine out. Maybe it's psycho-internetting.

I'm with Shawn, though, in that I wicked prefer the physical media. You need something to rest your drink on.

Todd Jordan
12-28-2011, 12:16 PM
I wicked prefer the physical media. You need something to rest your drink on.

Paul may be a wicked fuken HAAHHHD-on, but he speaks for us all.

Ian Jane
09-03-2015, 09:31 AM
Another interesting article on streaming vs. digital with some input from the guys behind Severin, Shout!, VS and Massacre...

http://flavorwire.com/535883/the-premature-death-of-physical-media-and-the-cult-home-video-labels-keeping-it-alive

Jason C
09-03-2015, 10:44 AM
^^Interesting read. The following quote sums up my obsession right now.

"with all the talk of physical media biting the dust, there’s almost a feeling, among collectors, of going to the store for loaves of bread and batteries before a hurricane. If rental options are going to be this limited, they want to bulk up their libraries while they can."


I found this interesting as well: "Gregory says, comparatively speaking, business is booming"

For the last 6 years or so I haven't had no problem keeping up with new releases and catching up on the titles missed before I started movie collecting in 2009. But I'm starting to feel like I'm drowning in new cult releases. Part of it is my tastes broadening but it feels like there are more cult labels putting out even more product.

Scyther
09-04-2015, 06:31 PM
^^Interesting read. The following quote sums up my obsession right now.

"with all the talk of physical media biting the dust, there’s almost a feeling, among collectors, of going to the store for loaves of bread and batteries before a hurricane. If rental options are going to be this limited, they want to bulk up their libraries while they can."

I definitely feel that way some times, almost like an archivist of sorts. I want to keep a record of this stuff alive.

Mark Tolch
09-04-2015, 06:55 PM
The only thing i buy in digital format is video games, because the urge to buy them only hits when I'm hammered and can't drive.

Dark Horse 77
09-04-2015, 07:07 PM
Count me in as one of those old fogeys who likes the physical product.

Scott
09-04-2015, 07:15 PM
I've slowed my purchasing down greatly over the past couple years but I still fawn over my collection daily. If money and room and time were more abundant I would have kept going full steam ahead. Part of me looks at my collection and thinks it's ridiculous to own all this crap but the other part of me is content knowing most of this stuff isn't readily available through either rental or streaming. Stuff like the CasaNegra discs or the action movies by PM Entertainment. There's so much stuff that is slipping through the cracks and no major corporation like Netflix and Redbox will champion it because it isn't new or Hollywood.

The Silly Swede
09-04-2015, 07:27 PM
As I've said many times before on this here forum: I just don't trust a file on a computer. I want to physically own stuff. Sure, I use Netflix instead of TV, and I VOD-new releases I am unsure of several times a month, but in the end it has got to be in the shelf for me to declare myself owner of it.

I still have 15 year old DVDs that play fine, while I have cycled through at least 6-7 computers in that time, you know.

And as many of you said, cult titles are not readily availalble on digital platforms, so it is not like I have a choice when it comes to at least half of the titles I buy.

Dom D
09-04-2015, 08:01 PM
As I've said many times before on this here forum: I just don't trust a file on a computer. I want to physically own stuff. Sure, I use Netflix instead of TV, and I VOD-new releases I am unsure of several times a month, but in the end it has got to be in the shelf for me to declare myself owner of it.

I still have 15 year old DVDs that play fine, while I have cycled through at least 6-7 computers in that time, you know.

And as many of you said, cult titles are not readily availalble on digital platforms, so it is not like I have a choice when it comes to at least half of the titles I buy.

Geez Swede you don t keep your films on yours systems drive. They're all on externals, backed up twice over , with one copy kept off site. My films are safer than anyone else's here.

I think you guys are nuts! I've got thousands of films and tv shows. I own them. I can hold them all in my hand. At once even! You can obsess over the spines but I prefer to obsess over the poster and cover art that flicks up on my screen as I scroll through my collection.

The big difference though is that eventually every physical media collection has to be thrown away. Files are forever.

Paul Casey
09-04-2015, 08:24 PM
The only thing i buy in digital format is video games, because the urge to buy them only hits when I'm hammered and can't drive.

hahaha Your efficiency is matched only by your safety. Kudos!

Quot
09-04-2015, 08:26 PM
The big difference though is that eventually every physical media collection has to be thrown away.
Not by me and not in my lifetime.

Not to mention all the LP's and 45's I still own. Plus, I used to have tons of digital files. Luckily, I put them all on DVD-R, 'cause that's all I have now, since my last hard drive crash (no other external storage, shame on me).

Dom D
09-04-2015, 08:54 PM
The problem you'll have if you plan on keeping then is getting hold of drives when they stop manufacturing them. Record players are a lot more durable and repairable than blu Ray players.

Paul L
09-04-2015, 09:02 PM
The big difference though is that eventually every physical media collection has to be thrown away. Files are forever.
This is an interesting point, Dom, and there's a lot of debate about the presumed longevity of digital files in the world of photography (it's something one of our students wrote part of their dissertation about a few years ago) - with the argument that in the digital age, more images are produced but because they're stored only as digital files they're more likely to become lost to the mists of time (than, say, negatives or prints) owing to the potential for corruption of the files or hardware failure, the lifespan of the medium on which the data is stored, and the increased rate of obsolescence of both hardware and software. The 'death' of a digital file can be far more sudden than the 'death' of a photographic negative. That logic can be applied to all sorts of digital media - not just photography. On top of that, with digital purchases via iTunes, etc, there are all sorts of issues surrounding proprietary rights. There's an interesting article here which covers most of this: http://www.dpconline.org/events/previous-events/306-digital-longevity

That said, I'm in an ongoing project of archiving digitally and offloading all of my DVD releases from non-boutique labels, simply owing to limitations of space. (I'm doing the same with my CDs.) Ultimately, it's a case of horses for courses, as with most things in life; but what I find frustrating about the streaming services - at least in the UK - is the focus on modern Hollyweird product and the absence of both classics and more esoteric titles, and I wonder what effect that might have on the next generation/s of film fans.

Paul L
09-04-2015, 09:14 PM
Record players are a lot more durable and repairable than blu Ray players.
Too true. The digital 'revolution' has brought some wonderful things into our lives but it's also alienated us from the ability to repair our own gadgets and has trapped us in a system of never-ending upgrades/the purchasing of replacements for broken equipment. For that reason, my household is gradually dumping electronics-heavy devices, where possible, in favour of mechanical objects - simply because I've become frustrated with replacing expensive and unrepairable electronics-based objects. So I've got rid of the digital cordless telephones and replaced them with a rotary dial telephone which I can (and have) repair(ed) myself; alongside my digital cameras, I've got a small stockpile of fully mechanical film cameras that I use just as often and which, again, I can repair myself. My point of view is that I take what I want and need to use from the digital world (eg, my HD television or computer) and marry it with the best of pre-digital technology: as a society, I think we've become too quick to 'dump' pre-digital technology simply owing to the false perception that newer = better.

Dom D
09-04-2015, 10:07 PM
This is an interesting point, Dom, and there's a lot of debate about the presumed longevity of digital files in the world of photography (it's something one of our students wrote part of their dissertation about a few years ago) - with the argument that in the digital age, more images are produced but because they're stored only as digital files they're more likely to become lost to the mists of time (than, say, negatives or prints) owing to the potential for corruption of the files or hardware failure, the lifespan of the medium on which the data is stored, and the increased rate of obsolescence of both hardware and software. The 'death' of a digital file can be far more sudden than the 'death' of a photographic negative. That logic can be applied to all sorts of digital media - not just photography. On top of that, with digital purchases via iTunes, etc, there are all sorts of issues surrounding proprietary rights. There's an interesting article here which covers most of this: http://www.dpconline.org/events/previous-events/306-digital-longevity.

I'd say this issue is massively overstated. I think it comes from the early days of digital photography where camera manufacturers were all releasing cameras with different- I don't know the term for image files so I'll say codecs. Some quite exotic. That's all been largely standardised now. Though it hasn't been for digital motion picture capture... but that's not an issue for any of us I suspect.

In the unlikely event mpeg gets forgotten then just transcode your films . It's easy, lossless and basically infallible.our collections are in constant use so we will be instantly aware of problems as they crop up and I can't see how you can be caught out.

And as for drive failure , back up. The wise man knows there are only two types of drive : the dead and the dying .

Mark Tolch
09-04-2015, 10:52 PM
Files are forever? Come on, Dom, ive been through at least 30 systems and 50 hard drives since 83...and the records ive got from then are in fine shape :)

Paul L
09-05-2015, 03:42 AM
In the unlikely event mpeg gets forgotten then just transcode your films . It's easy, lossless and basically infallible.our collections are in constant use so we will be instantly aware of problems as they crop up and I can't see how you can be caught out.

I back up everything religiously ( :) ), but I have to say that I've got six external HDs (mostly 500Gb or 1Tb in size) with films and music on them, and whilst my collection is in constant use, individual files aren't. I still suspect failure of a file or a whole bunch of files is not just a distinct possibility but an inevitability - which is why I'm very thorough about backing up my data. I'm curious about the lifespan of SSDs in comparison with HDDs: I've still got a prejudice against SSDs owing to their (perceived) lack of stability about a decade or so ago, but they seem to be the future of data storage.

The Silly Swede
09-05-2015, 06:31 AM
Of course I have external drives up the arse, (filled with games I no longer play, and quite a bit of pornography) but I still trust them less then I do a disc. Cause the disc does not wear, it just sits there, while I hear my external drives wearing themselves out every day. Also, a disc is a one time purchase. These external drives cost quite a bit and need replacing every 4-5 years or so, to be on the safe side.

JoeS
09-05-2015, 01:36 PM
You could extend the conversation further:

What happens to those movies that NEVER play in Theaters NOR on Television NOR on Physical Media? Will they even exist in 25 years?


Up until now, virtually every movie had one of those elements in their 'release history'. As long as ONE physical copy exists - copies could be made, even if it's a bootleg Beta cassette tape recorded off of TV in 1981. Now? There's a whole batch of tiny indies that make their debut via streaming or download online. Netflix, Amazon and Hulu and the like only have so much capacity. Eventually, when a movie fails to attract enough downloads or hits, they get dropped from the service. Filmmaker based personal websites eventually disappear or go dormant. Unpopular code formats fall into disuse. Yes, this type of unfortunate movie may still theoretically exist on a server or in the cloud (and on an IMDb page), but, for all practical purposes - do they still really exist?

Wither those movies?

discuss

John Bernhard
09-05-2015, 01:56 PM
What happens to those movies that NEVER play in Theaters NOR on Television NOR on Physical Media? Will they even exist in 25 years?
..... but, for all practical purposes - do they still really exist?

Wither those movies?


Some one somewhere will have saved a copy of it...even if they never watched it themselves. Things will always be shared on blogs and sites far after their commercial viability is played out.
This is one inarguable amazing aspect of the inter-webs.

I have about 30 TB on externals ( half of that is back up ) and do tremble with fear over the eventual , inevitable failures. But the back ups should insure me against loss, and maybe they is another better storage medium about to be invented for consumer use? Every now and then I pull an older DVD-R out to check something and find it corrupted, so while I used to have more faith in physical media, that has since been reduced considerably.

Back to the header of this thread, this chart below is troubling. BD is such a niche market, it's amazing it's as diverse as it continues to be.
And where 4K fits into this pie chart is a mystery to me.

http://i.imgur.com/BjAUB9o.jpg

Tim R-T-C
09-10-2015, 05:00 PM
I'd say this issue is massively overstated. I think it comes from the early days of digital photography where camera manufacturers were all releasing cameras with different- I don't know the term for image files so I'll say codecs. Some quite exotic. That's all been largely standardised now. Though it hasn't been for digital motion picture capture... but that's not an issue for any of us I suspect.

In the unlikely event mpeg gets forgotten then just transcode your films . It's easy, lossless and basically infallible.our collections are in constant use so we will be instantly aware of problems as they crop up and I can't see how you can be caught out.

And as for drive failure , back up. The wise man knows there are only two types of drive : the dead and the dying .

Talking of the dead and dying. I think the bigger issue with the longevity of files is what happens after you die. In the past, sorting through a relatives photographs and albums was part of the mourning process.

I myself have some 100,000+ photos sorted on my PC, if I pop my clogs tomorrow, I think it highly unlikely that any of my family will be able to sort through them all if they can even work out how to access them. If you just have photos stored on a cloud, the password dies with you, they may be there forever, but no-one will ever find or be able to use them.

Dom D
09-10-2015, 06:30 PM
How come your family wouldn't be able to access your files? It's funny when I was collecting VHS my little sister used to badger me as to who got them when I eventually died. And I actually gave it semi-serious thought.... Five years later they were in landfill.

I was thinking about this. It reminds of when I was training to be a projectionist in the late 90s. At the time I finished the course Lucas had just begun shooting Star Wars on digital. So I said to the guy who trained me "so now I know what I'm doing how long are we actually going to be using film anyway?" And he goes off on a diatribe about film is forever, Lucas is an idiot, cinemas would never degrade the image like that etc etc.

He was a smart guy and knew a million times more about the subject than I ever will but even knowing that I knew he was wrong. If he'd been an impartial observer on the subject he'd have known he was wrong too. He was just very invested in film and wanted that to be true so much he'd convinced himself.

I love my media pc. Everyone who sees it loves it and sets about building their own afterwards (or gets me to do it for them). The best bit is the way it changes the way you can watch movies. A while back I was sitting on the couch having a drink and my girlfriend said I want to watch the last 15 minutes of The Good The Bad And The Ugly. Boom 10 seconds later it's playing. Then she said "that home invasion movie where the two kids keep playing the same song over and over. I want to hear the song" ten seconds later I had Oasis of Fear on. "No not that movie. The other one." Switch it to the middle of Ogasmo halfway through the film. And on and on and on we went. An evening well spent with my films whom I love as dearly as my cats. You can't play with films like that on discs. Mostly, of course, you want to watch to watch a film start to finish but it's cool to have options.


The Silly Swede

Of course I have external drives up the arse, (filled with games I no longer play, and quite a bit of pornography) but I still trust them less then I do a disc. Cause the disc does not wear, it just sits there, while I hear my external drives wearing themselves out every day. Also, a disc is a one time purchase. These external drives cost quite a bit and need replacing every 4-5 years or so, to be on the safe side.

I'm aware I'm lucky but I've never had an external fail and I must have a dozen of them. But as it's not an issue if they do fail. Drives cost a lot less than bookshelves for discs, shipping costs for discs, and the costs of the discs themselves. I would estimate my 1000 dvds cost me $2 each for the plastic, $1500 to ship them to Australia over the years and $360 for bookcases to hold them. I don't want to think what I paid removalists to shift them from house to house for me. The total though would keep me in drives for the rest of my life.

Quot
09-10-2015, 07:27 PM
You, sir, are a rare bird. And I mean no disrespect. I admire your conviction (and opinions).

Mark Tolch
09-10-2015, 08:37 PM
I have a media PC, i use it mostly for music, having ripped all my CDs to flac....however....if, say, your average blu is 25GB. That's 40 movies per TB. So if i have 400 movies, I need two 5TB drives, then backups....unless im streaming avi or mp4 rips at a substandard quality, what's the advantage?

The Silly Swede
09-11-2015, 05:54 AM
I pity the fool who will sort though all my pornography on my computer when I am gone. I wont care then though, as I will be dead.

Paul L
09-11-2015, 08:22 AM
I pity the fool who will sort though all my pornography on my computer when I am gone. I wont care then though, as I will be dead.
That reminds me of the time I took out a mortgage and the woman at the bank was trying to push insurance on me. I turned it down; she asked me what would happen to the mortgage if I died. I told her, I don't know and wouldn't care - because I'd be dead.

There's no arguing with that :biggrin:

Paul L
09-11-2015, 08:24 AM
Here's a song that proposes that very question!


http://youtu.be/YS87mPfD_yI
Interesting video. It made me think of Ralph Eugene Meatyard's THE FAMILY ALBUM OF LUCYBELLE CRATER.

sukebanboy
09-11-2015, 06:24 PM
I pity the fool who will sort though all my pornography on my computer when I am gone. I wont care then though, as I will be dead.

Interpol will probably take care of that for you Swede...but that will probably be BEFORE you die:funny:

vincent_z
09-17-2015, 12:54 AM
Maybe I've been more certain about what I saved, but yes, I have saved much of my off-line files {of content which I already possess on VHS} on off line hard drives. (http://www.microcenter.com/product/418098/1TB_Portable_SuperSpeed_USB_30_External_Hard_Drive )
But, on the other hand, so much of what I've brought back from Japan is not going to be available through authorized channels; whether it is because it is sexually explicit, or whether it is because the subject matter contained within is violative of U.S. Federal Law.(!)
So, the need for physical media will remain.