Mike Becky

Tag Archive for ‘Blu-ray’

Netflix Is Ending Its DVD-by-Mail Subscription Service ➝

Heather Kelly, reporting for the Washington Post:

After 25 years of sending discs of movies and TV shows to people through the mail, Netflix is discontinuing the DVD subscription business that started it all, the company announced in its Tuesday earnings report.

Another sad day for physical media.

➝ Source: washingtonpost.com

The Resurrection of Physical Media ➝

A great piece by CJ Chilvers, listing some of the advantages that DVDs and Blu-rays have over streaming services. Physical discs really are superior to streaming services. I can rip the discs and store the files in my Plex library for convenience, I never have to worry about a series or movie being pulled, and I only have to pay once to watch it as many times as I want.

➝ Source: cjchilvers.com

Handbrake Blu-Ray Video Conversion Settings ➝

I just recently purchased this Blu-ray drive so I can rip high quality movies and TV shows for playback on Plex and Infuse. For anyone curious, I rip the disc using MakeMKV, which is free while in beta, and then use Handbrake with the settings in the above link. The resulting video quality is superb, especially considering the file size. And if you still rip standard definition DVDs from time to time, the site has settings for that too.

And of course, this should only be used for making backups of discs that you actually own.

DVDs and Blu-rays Will Now Carry Unskippable Government Warnings ➝

Nate Anderson, writing for Ars Technica:

The idea isn’t to deter current pirates, apparently (the new scheme requires all legal purchasers to sit through 20 seconds of warnings each time they pop in a film, but will be totally absent from pirated downloads and bootlegs). It’s to educate everyone else. As ICE Director John Morton announced in a statement yesterday, “Law enforcement must continue to expand how it combats criminal activity; public awareness and education are a critical part of that effort.”

Unskippable garbage before the movie is one of the many reasons why I’ve ripped every DVD I own. I have a feeling that making movies easier to watch will discourage pirates far more than forcing them to sit through annoying government warnings.

(Via Daring Fireball.)

Bag of Hurt Comes to the Mac ➝

This is the first Blu-ray player available for the Mac. But in a brilliant example of why Blu-ray is a bag of hurt, CNET’s Topher Kessler writes:

The player is a simple drag-and-drop install and works by managing Blu-ray licensing through the Internet, so when you insert a disc and open it with the player, the system will manage the Advanced Access Content System keys and other content management features through the Macgo servers. Unfortunately this means there are some limitations, like not being able to play the movies if you have no Internet connection

So, you won’t be able to watch Blu-ray discs on an airplane unless your flight offers Wi-Fi.

Bag of hurt.”

Amazon Offers On-Demand Movies with Purchase of DVD ➝

Buy Now, Watch Now

From Amazon:

When you purchase select DVD and Blu-ray titles from Amazon.com you will also receive an Amazon Video On Demand standard definition version as a gift with purchase (see details). You’ll be able to instantly enjoy the video on demand version on your Mac, PC, compatible device or compatible TV when it is available.

I’ve always believed that if you buy a physical version of any type of media the seller should also give you a digital version to download at the time of purchase. Even if the digital version is lower quality than the physical version it’ll give the purchaser that extra push to buy from you and not someone else.

Instant gratification is a wonderful thing.

iTunes May Gain Blu-ray Support and Application Organization ➝

The Boy Genius Report has “received a tip from a pretty reliable source” claiming that iTunes 9 will include support for Blu-ray. This isn’t the first time this rumor has cropped up though. Back in April a MacRumors forum poster pointed out that the iTunes 8.2 beta contained references to Blu-ray data from Gracenote.

But, with the latest rumors that the iMac line could receive Blu-ray drives, you might want to take this a little more seriously (but I would still suggest a grain of salt).

The Boy Genius has also been told that iTunes 9 will include the ability to “visually organize and arrange your iPhone and iPod touch applications.” I’m hoping that this new feature will also add application descriptions. Currently the only way to find out what an application in your iTunes library actually does (other than hints from the apps name and icon) is to search for its name in the iTunes Store.

And finally, the part of these iTunes 9 rumors that almost made me pass it by, “some kind of Twitter/Facebook/Last.fm integration.” Why can’t they just quit while they’re ahead?

Update 8/12/09: The Boy Genius Report has posted some screenshots from a German blog that claim to depict some of the features in iTunes 9, and they look fake. The Boy Genius Report is also spreading rumors that Apple will be debuting a “social” application.

The application will allow you to broadcast what music you’re currently listening to, allow you to share your music with people on your network, connect with your friend’s friends (no clue on that one), and update all of your statuses at the same time. ITunes 9 will let you broadcast music statuses as well.

And regarding the application organization, the Boy Genius writes:

We’ve been told it allow you to sort your applications alphabetically, by genre, date added, and of course, custom arrangement.

Upcoming iMacs to Release with ‘Compelling New Features’ ➝

In a recent article published by AppleInsider, Kasper Jade vaguely suggests that upcoming iMac’s will receive two “compelling new features”.

One of those features is said to have long been on the wish-lists of many Mac users while the other is expected to cater to the semi-professional audio/video crowd. This is according to cryptic tips from people often familiar with the Mac maker’s future product initiatives, but who declined to elaborate because they were not authorized to discuss the matter in detail.

This has lead AppleInsider to believe that these new iMacs will receive Blu-ray drives in their next refresh. The cryptic nature of this rumor doesn’t really point to any particular feature. It would be logical to believe that Blu-ray is the audio/video-centric feature but other than AppleInsider’s polling of “industry-watchers” there isn’t any solid indication that this is the case.

Kasper Jade goes on to claim that the iMac line will see price cuts and that Apple is “said to be working on an industrial design overhaul for the iMac line which could arrive as early as this year.” It would make sense to see price cuts on the iMac line, this would bring it at parity with Apple’s recent notebook refresh.