Redbox will close over 500 of its movie-rental kiosks this year

44 responses to Redbox will close over 500 of its movie-rental kiosks this year

  1. An interesting contraction – wonder if it’s based on overextending their footprint or a significant decline in physical media rentals. Article also indicates their Netflix/Amazon streaming competitor isn’t doing so well – with Verizon’s might behind it, you’d think they’d drive more synergies and supersized marketing. Unless Verizon’s ready to pull the plug and focus on their Internet-based television service powered by Intel OnCue.

  2. Well this could be a problem. Where will I pirate rent Wii games for my kid’s hacked Wii?

  3. Who even knew the strikethru tag worked in comments.

  4. Blu’s only make up 15% of rentals? 80%+ prefer DVD’s? What year is this again?

  5. @chucky

    Many of us (me, for example) never saw a reason to upgrade from DVDs. The quality isn’t that much better for most movies, and my TV doesn’t have a high enough resolution to make the higher resolution worthwhile.

    And then I skipped to streaming/digital, rendering the Blu-Ray format redundant.

  6. “Many of us (me, for example) never saw a reason to upgrade from DVDs. The quality isn’t that much better for most movies”

    Have you considered glasses, contacts, cataract surgery, or a seeing-eye dog?

    “my TV doesn’t have a high enough resolution to make the higher resolution worthwhile.”

    Have you considered upgrading from your current 480i cathode ray tube set?

  7. How exactly would “glasses, contacts, cataract surgery, or a seeing-eye dog” help with the decades of TV shows originally shot at a relatively low resolution?

    How would they help with the century or more of cinema which was shot on _film_, and thus has an inherent limitation on up-sizing the resolution?

    And then there are SF shows like ST:V and B5, which were two of the early adopters of CGI spaceships. Those ships look incredibly bad in HD.

    And the other thing which digiterati like you seem to miss is that the hi-res only really benefits movies and shows made in the past 10 to 15 years, and not even all of that content is improved. I don’t need a higher resolution to appreciate shows like Supernatural, Orphan Black, Hannibal, Sherlock, or many others.

    See, there’s a reason why DVDs still rule. And since you can fit several hours of video onto a DVD, there’s no reason for me to replace what works with expensive new tech (especially since I have already gone digital).

  8. 500 machines out of 40,000 is 1.25%. The sky is not falling.

  9. “How would they help with the century or more of cinema which was shot on _film_, and thus has an inherent limitation on up-sizing the resolution?”

    Film has almost infinite resolution; it goes all the way down to silver atoms. There’s an utterly enormous difference between a 1930′s B&W movie digitized at 480 and 1080.

    (And whenever we eventually get 4K in the home, those 1930′s movies will get redigitized and look even better.)

    “And the other thing which digiterati like you seem to miss is that the hi-res only really benefits movies and shows made in the past 10 to 15 years”

    As noted, you’re waaaay off base on movies, whether they were shot in 2005 or 1925.

    The great Gordon Willis died this week, (RIP). Maybe you ought to watch his 1970′s chiaroscuro masterpieces like Manhattan or The Godfather on DVD and Blu, and then tell me HD has no ‘real benefit’ on older movies. (If you can do so, we’re back to glasses, contacts, cataract surgery, seeing-eye dog territory…)

    But your point on pre-HDTV teevee is partially correct, with one quite notable exception:

    A sizable amount of pre-HDTV teevee was shot on film, not video. And when modern transfers are made of those series, they are generally able to go back to the original film elements and thus get real HD digitizations.

    So you are correct that HD won’t help make teevee originally shot on video like All In The Family look much better. But again, that’s only part of pre-HDTV teevee.

  10. Blu-ray normally has much larger black bars than DVDs, unless you have one of the newer ‘cinema-wide’ HDTVs.

    That annoyance alone is why I only rent DVDs.

  11. “Blu-ray normally has much larger black bars than DVDs, unless you have one of the newer ‘cinema-wide’ HDTVs. That annoyance alone is why I only rent DVDs.”

    If you are actually saying you have a 4:3 set, which means you highly likely have a 480i set, then you should be renting DVD’s, as Blu’s will get you no picture improvement whatsoever.

  12. Nate, film is innately and infinitely higher res than 480i (and not 4:3) — don’t get sidetracked by how movies may have initially been encoded for VHS or DVD. Having said that, if you haven’t upgraded your sets you’re absolutely right to stick with DVD. But use component cables (or HDMI) versus composite to go 480p versus 480i if you can. Applies equally for disc or digital. (Hopefully your DVD player does progressive scan… last time I bought one 10+ years ago, that feature required a higher-end purchase. Who knows, hopefully it’s standard these days.)

  13. If one can actually see and/or hear the difference between a DVD & BRD depends on ones equipment, how well it has been setup, and the watching/listening environment. If one cares about any difference they can see/hear with there own setup is a personal preference.

    However the actual increased video and audio quality available from a BRD versus the same movie on DVD is significant.

    The fact that so many people have so poor setups that it doesn’t matter or just don’t care is a shame and makes me wonder about 4K.

  14. “If you are actually saying you have a 4:3 set”

    No, the black areas (top & bottom) are larger on a _standard_ HDTV 16:9 screen for Blu-ray versus DVD.

    I guess the disc creators feel they should keep the cinema aspect width for their Blu-ray releases, but that means larger black areas top & bottom versus DVD.

  15. “No, the black areas (top & bottom) are larger on a _standard_ HDTV 16:9 screen for Blu-ray versus DVD.”

    This is 100% wrong! If you go to the store today and buy any DVD and Blu-Ray of the same movie they will have the exact same bars or lack there of. A movie is either in 1.85 (very thin black bars on HDTV screen usually since TV is 1.78) or 2.35 larger black bars. No studio I know of takes a 2.35 movie on Blu-Ray and release it as 1.85 on DVD which is sort of what you are implying.

    Now all that being said you may see smaller or no black bars with DVD player if your TV is overscanning DVD and not Blu-Ray sometimes the case due to connection.

    I don’t know if you use Netflix but to easily illustrate this is to watch something in SD (2 bars usually) and in HD or even Super HD. If you can’t see a difference in this I will agree with chucky. Or maybe you sit 20′ away from 32″ TV?

    Look at post 16 in this thread http://forum.blu-ray.com/showthread.php?t=141407 for illustration of what I have said.

  16. One more thought for Nate on shows like Sherlock and Orphan Black – you may not appreciate the extra resolution, but these modern shows were shot for 16:9 sets and your content is likely being cropped if you still have an old 4:3 TV. Not a deal breaker, but what you’re seeing is not the entirety of the visuals or what the director intended.

    (We were in talks to buy the domain panandscan several years back as a fun reminder of the old days – owners didn’t want cash but a perpetual banner ad up top pointing to their remaining sites. One day I’ll get it on the cheap, along with linenoise.)

  17. shower_urinator May 25, 2014 at 11:07 am

    I prefer an anamorphic widescreen dvd over a bluray because it eliminates the black bars on the top and bottom. The bluray standard didn’t incorporate the anamorphic capability.

    One of the selling points for widescreen TVs intitially was that they would eliminate letter boxing, but with bluray, most movies are letterboxed.

    I suspect that most people who rent movies from Redbox are watching them on a small screen, letterboxing on a small screen makes the movie difficult to watch.

  18. “I prefer an anamorphic widescreen dvd over a bluray because it eliminates the black bars on the top and bottom. The bluray standard didn’t incorporate the anamorphic capability.”

    OK. This utterly baffles me, but it may just be due to your wild misuse of terminology, and not anything deeper. (If so, it may also clear up my utter bafflement at what Bill in NC was trying to convey.)

    Are you saying you prefer DVD’s because some new releases on DVD are pan ‘n’ scanned to 16:9, while Blu’s always have the original aspect ratio?

    If that’s what you actually mean, then I’m no longer baffled, though my personal preferences are radically different than yours.

    (I generally rip my Blu’s and play them back via Plex. And while much more than 95% of the time, I watch films in their original aspect ratio, very occasionally I will use Plex to zoom a film into 16:9. While the zooming obviously results in some minor PQ degradation compared to the original Blu rip, it’s still significantly better PQ than a 16:9 pan ‘n’ scanned DVD.)

    —–

    “No studio I know of takes a 2.35 movie on Blu-Ray and release it as 1.85 on DVD which is sort of what you are implying.”

    I obviously don’t buy or rent DVD’s of new releases since Blu exists, but I do remember the olden days of 4:3 teevee sets. And back then, a lot of studios did release new films on DVD in both original aspect ratio and ‘fullscreen’ versions. In a 4:3 world with tiny teevee sets compared to today, that actually made a certain amount of sense, and sometimes I would opt for the ‘fullscreen’ version myself, despite being a cinephile geek.

    I have no idea if the practice still exists, with studios releasing films pan ‘n’ scanned to 16:9, but if it does, it certainly makes far less sense these days. (Though HBO certainly seems to think their viewers prefer that approach…)

  19. I’m comparing commercially-released DVD vs. Blu-ray on a 60″ LG plasma we use up at the mountain cabin.

    There is simply more ‘vertical’ (top & bottom) black on the Blu-ray versus the DVD release.

    I guess the DVDs I prefer are the ‘anamorphic’ widescreen DVDs – there is some black-boxing, but nothing compared to a Blu-ray.

    I see no way to adjust aspect ratio on my Panasonic Blu-ray to compensate for this – it’s frustrating watching a Blu-ray with a narrow ‘ribbon’ of content (& huge black areas, top & bottom) on a 60″ screen.

  20. Maybe when 4K becomes standard moving to a ‘cinema-wide’ 21:9 HDTV will fix the problem.

  21. “No studio I know of takes a 2.35 movie on Blu-Ray and release it as 1.85 on DVD which is sort of what you are implying.”

    Poking around it appears the above is exactly what is done.

    e.g. for Gravity the Blu-ray is 2.4:1, the DVD is 1.78:1.

  22. Bill in NC: You pose an interesting question, would Blu-Ray be more popular if they offered 16:9 “Full screen” (panandscan) versions of new movies, instead of staying with the movies original aspect ratio? For some movies I want to watch the “whole” movie (don’t want anything cut of on the sides) for others I wouldn’t mind a Full screen version.

    What do other people think?

  23. Back in my SD days when I had a 25″ 4:3 SD TV I actually only wanted DVDs that were the “Full Screen” version of the movie. The TV was just to small, if the DVD maintaining the films original aspect ratio I had a hard time seeing the movie.

    Now that I have a 50″ HD TV there a certain movies I want to see the whole movie and am glad they maintain the original aspect ratio. However there are some movies I wish they offered a “full screen” version for a 16:9 TV.

    That brings up an interesting question: Would movies on Blu-ray be more popular if they offered a HD TV (16:9) “full Screen” version?

  24. “Would movies on Blu-ray be more popular if they offered a HD TV (16:9) ‘full Screen’ version?”

    It would be nice if the player itself offered the option to ‘zoom’ to 16:9 from the original cinematic 21:9, as Chucky notes he can do with Plex for his Blu-ray rips.

  25. The only reason the DVD would have smaller black bars is because the TV has different settings. If the Tv is set properly there will be no difference in the size of the black bars.

    Or it could just come down to different inputs or different settings for different resolutions. Bottom line though if comparing apples to apples, ie. the same settings for both a DVD and BD, the same amount of picture will be on screen. Just that one has a lot more resolution and looks much, much better.

  26. “It would be nice if the player itself offered the option to ‘zoom’ to 16:9 from the original cinematic (widescreen aspect ratio), as Chucky notes he can do with Plex for his Blu-ray rips.”

    Do no Blu players currently offer this capability? If so, I’m amazed, as I’d assume there would be a sales advantage to doing so, and the additional silicon would be cheap.

    —–

    “The only reason the DVD would have smaller black bars is because the TV has different settings.”

    Do we really know those DVD’s aren’t pan ‘n’ scan?

    “That brings up an interesting question: Would movies on Blu-ray be more popular if they offered a HD TV (16:9) “full Screen” version?”

    Well, they certainly wouldn’t be more popular with me.

    But given that HBO runs its movies ‘fullscreen’, and given that HBO likely knows the desires of its customers, I’d assume there would demand for dual-releases of movies on Blu, in both ‘normal’ and ‘fullscreen’. (I’d further assume that almost all buyers would go for ‘normal’, while some renters would go for ‘fullscreen’.)

    Regardless, anything the studios can do to make those 80%+ of Redbox consumers stop renting DVD’s would make me happy. That statistic is the most depressing one I’ve seen since I read that 78% of American think the Sun revolves around the Earth…

    (And that Redbox stat makes me think Dave ought to reconsider buying the panandscan domain.)

  27. DVDs are also easier to rip & take up less space if you want to cram a few dozen ripped movies on a microSD card for on-the-go viewing on your phone or tablet.

  28. Rentals are keeping DVD’s alive, without rentals studios would pull the plug. New DVD releases are not that much less than the blu ray in price. You will see combo packs for awhile, but free standing DVD releases days are numbered as far as sales.

  29. My primary use of Redbox is for long car rides. I rent a flick or two for the kids, they watch it in the car and we return them at our destination (usually for the 8 hour drive to grandma’s we do twice a year). Since I only have in car blu ray is not affordable or common we only rent dvd.

    If I only had one kid I’d just use a tablet. But I don’t want my kids wearing headphones too often, so the red box and the dual screen dvd’s are the current winner.

  30. DVDs take up a smaller footprint on a hard drive, which is one reason. No, I’m not stealing anything..

    The other reason is that the extra pixels of resolution never made a movie “better” to me.

    For those of you old enough to remember: VHS tapes were horrible. You had a really low resolution format and then they added Macrovision (I think that was the copy protection) on top of it, creating even more noise, plus every time you played it you made it slightly crappier because of the physical contact.

    Moving from VHS -> LaserDisc made a huge difference. The movie played the same every time. LaserDisc -> DVD was also a step up in resolution and size of the format (convenience).

    BluRay, while it looks good, really wasn’t the same bump. That VHS->LaserDisc change was the biggest just with the movie looking the same every time (not degrading).

    I’ve never watched a movie on DVD and thought, “If only I were watching this on BluRay, then I could finally enjoy the movie…”

    All that being said, I understand how some people just appreciate the technology of it all and want that absolute best picture available. For the rest of us, the convenience is nice (like MP3s vs CDs).

  31. “I’ve never watched a movie on DVD and thought, “If only I were watching this on BluRay, then I could finally enjoy the movie…”

    You and I are very different, my friend.

    “the convenience is nice (like MP3s vs CDs)”

    The better comparison is 32kbps MP3′s vs 256kbps MP3′s. Some folks claim they can’t tell the difference. I claim they’re functionally deaf.

    And what exactly is the “convenience” advantage to DVD’s over Blu’s?

    Sure, one normally rips DVD’s into a smaller size than a Blu rip. But here’s the thing: a 1.5GB rip of a Blu will look noticeably better than than a 1.5GB rip of a DVD. And a 4GB rip of a Blu will be emphatically better than either, if you’re really tight on space. (But platter drives are kinda cheap these days, y’know, so even 4GB is a bit silly.)

    “LaserDisc -> DVD was also a step up in resolution”

    Not really. The two were vaguely comparable in PQ, though they used very different technologies. (But there was a difference in covenience.)

    (BTW, just FYI, DVD’s had Macrovision too.)

    And seriously, you’re arguing the various merits of the vaguely comparable VHS, LaserDisc, and DVD, but you can’t see the utterly massive “bump” of Blu to all three of those vaguely comparable formats? I mean, seriously, we’re talking about roughly an order of magnitude more picture over the three formats you discuss. And you can see it! When 4K finally arrives in the home in 2030, will you be saying, “it’s pretty much the same as DVD”?

    (As I suggested to Nate, have you considered glasses, contacts, cataract surgery, or a seeing-eye dog? You may not think these things are for you, but you’ll thank me afterwards.)

  32. Regarding the comments about VHS to DVD being a bigger jump in quality than DVD to BRD. In my opinion it really depends on what you are/were viewing the video on. When I went from VHS to DVD I was viewing on a cheap 24″ Tube TV with no AV receiver. So while the picture certainly looked better it was still a fairly small change. When I went from DVD to BRD I was watching on a medium to high end 50″ plasma with a very good 5.1 AV sound system and I thought there was a pretty big change in the over all experience.

    I think it is worth saying again, the perceived differences between DVD and BRD really depend on your setup and view environment. If you really want to see how big the difference is, find a friend with a properly setup high end projector and 7.1 AV sound system using a 120″ screen in a good viewing environment and you will understand.

  33. “I think it is worth saying again, the perceived differences between DVD and BRD really depend on your setup and view environment.”

    I heard you the first time, and chose to remain silent, because I was and am in agreement with pretty much everything else of what you have to say.

    But this time, I’ll chime up in disagreement on that particular point.

    Let’s posit a ‘worst case scenario’ of watching a 32″ 720p teevee with stereo speakers.

    (I choose this particular ‘worst case scenario both because it’s plausible in the real world, and also because it was my setup it’s the first time I watched DVD and Blu on the same A/V equipment. Now, obviously, if you’re watching on your phone or in your car, you’re falling below my ‘worst case scenario’, but I’m talkin’ ’bout the lean-back here.)

    Even in such a humble viewing scenario, you really can notice the difference. There really is a order of magnitude more picture there, and even in such a humble viewing scenario, you can see it.

    And, yes atmusky, I fully agree with you that the difference in viewing experience gets extremely magnified the larger your screen and the more sophisticated your audio. But I think it’s an entirely new medium even on the tiniest modern lean-back teevee sets…

  34. @Chucky – look, I’m not knocking you for liking the technical aspects or even appreciating it.. I’m saying that to me, it’s just watching a movie and doesn’t really affect my life much more than that.

    Let me put it to you in an example. Let’s say you were to invite me over to watch Raiders of the Lost Ark. Let’s say that you just happened to pick something at random to get it to the screen (DVD, Bluray, streaming, whatever). I wouldn’t care. I’m there to watch Raiders, not pixel-count. The only time I’d complain is if you put in a VHS tape as that would be pretty horrid. Even if you put in a LaserDisc I’d probably only notice it when it stopped to switch sides and I’d say, “Oh, wow – you’re still using LaserDiscs!”

    What’s on the screen would still be Raiders to me, though, regardless of whether you streamed it from Amazon, Netflix, Vudu, BluRay, DVD, streamed from your hard drive, etc. I just want to watch the movie and have a beer.

    Now, if you said, “This is the Criterion BluRay version!” I’d think, “Oh, that’s nice. Now let’s watch the movie.” I see Indy running across a field, I don’t look for the detail of the individual blades of grass to bask in the awesomeness of the technology, not that I don’t think it’s neat in it’s own right, but I’m really just there to watch a movie.

  35. Chucky: Funny you mention a 32″ 720p TV. That is the actually TV I first watched HD on for any period of time. My mother needed a new TV back around 2006 and bought a ViewSonic 720p 32 LCD TV. The color/picture was never great and it didn’t do motion all that well, but it replaced a 21″ tube TV and we thought it was amazing at the time.

    Anyway note I didn’t say there wouldn’t be any perceived difference, just that the differences would depend highly on the setup and viewing environment.

    Lets go back to that 32″ TV, there will be no perceivable difference in the audio quality between DVD & BRD and if someone sits around 14 foot away it is very likely their eyes will not see any difference in the video quality either, move to a 6-8 foot viewing distance and there should be noticeable differences in the video quality.

    When people start talking about the differences in video and audio quality between DVD/BRD/Streaming etc.. I like to remind them that most people are really talking about the perceivable difference their equipment and setup allows them to see/hear not the measurable, significant, & non debatable actual differences in the video and audio quality being provided by various formats/sources.

  36. BradB and Bill in NC I will accept that you don’t care about the quality improvements between DVD and Blu-Ray or I suppose SDTV and HDTV since they are similar. However please don’t imply there is no visible difference.

    Myself (and I believe Chucky) do enjoy the improved quality of the viewing experience of Blu-Ray. I used to have 106″ screen but even on my 46″ I can see the difference for sure. Further I am worried that the MP3ization of music will happen to video and we will be forced to accept lower quality streaming. Hopefully H.265 + 4K will keep the option of higher quality as an option.

  37. “Let me put it to you in an example. Let’s say you were to invite me over to watch Raiders of the Lost Ark. Let’s say that you just happened to pick something at random to get it to the screen (DVD, Bluray, streaming, whatever). I wouldn’t care.”

    Deal!

    I’ll invite you over for some mac ‘n’ cheese.

    I’ll serve you a microwaved frozen Walmart mac ‘n’ cheese 9 months past it’s sell-by date. (Don’t worry. It won’t make you ill.) I’ll provide you with salt for additional seasoning as necessary. And seconds are on the house.

    I’ll serve myself and the rest of the guests a homemade mac ‘n’ cheese. I’d like to pick whole-wheat elbow pasta, cuz that’s how I like to roll, but if a majority of my guests would prefer white pasta, we’ll go with that instead. I’ll use a base blend of butter, cream, emmental cheese, and a bit of olive oil, along with paprika, fresh basil, and a few other spices, all topped with some reggiano parmesan. And maybe, just to gild the lily, I’ll shave some white truffles on top.

    So we’ll all eat mac ‘n’ cheese. We’ll all get some calories and feel full. My and the other guests’ meal will be an order of magnitude better than yours. And you won’t care about the difference, since we’re all eating the same title! Win-win!

    ——

    “Lets go back to that 32″ TV … if someone sits around 14 foot away it is very likely their eyes will not see any difference in the video quality either, move to a 6-8 foot viewing distance and there should be noticeable differences in the video quality.”

    I emphatically assert that if you sat 14 feet away, there really would be a strongly noticeable difference. (And I say that from experience.) But I’ll partially agree with you in the sense that back when I first went HD with a 32″ set, I spent more time sprawled directly in front of the teevee than I had since I was a little kid. (The thing was full of stars!)

    But, again, even with the tiniest modern teevee, and even sitting further away, Blu was a whole new medium from DVD. Like going from 8mm to IMAX. Like going from B&W to color. Like going from radio to teevee…

  38. Actually my complaint was the loss of picture ‘size’ even on a 60″ plasma, because of the aspect ratio differences between Blu-ray & DVD releases (massive black bars, top & bottom, for the Blu-ray versus the DVD)

    You then claimed studios release both formats with the same aspect ratio, then I posted an example of a recent movie where they are not (2.4:1 for Blu-ray versus 1.85:1 for DVD).

    I’d have a better chance of judging picture quality if so much of the screen wasn’t blank because of the 21:9 cinema aspect imposed on a 16:9 screen.

    So no wonder people are still renting DVDs (which are formatted for their 16:9 screens).

    Brian wrote

    “I will accept that you don’t care about the quality improvements between DVD and Blu-Ray or I suppose SDTV and HDTV since they are similar. However please don’t imply there is no visible difference.”

  39. “You then claimed studios release both formats with the same aspect ratio, then I posted an example of a recent movie where they are not (2.4:1 for Blu-ray versus 1.85:1 for DVD).”

    Dunno if the “you” there applies to me or not, but I’m in full agreement with you that there should be some way for folks like you who strongly prefer ‘fullscreen’ to enjoy the massive advantages of Blu. (Assuming the rip ‘n’ Plex crowd like me is destined to remain a tiny minority.)

    Again, I’m amazed if it’s true that no Blu players can zoom into ‘fullscreen’, as it seems as if that would provide a competitive marketplace advantage without significantly increasing the BOM. If those Blu players don’t or (somehow) can’t exist, the studios should certainly consider releasing Blu’s in both ‘normal’ and ‘fullscreen’ versions to satisfy customers. Given those Redbox numbers, and given the considered choice made by HBO to pan ‘n’ scan, it seems like you are nowhere near alone, thus making dual-releases a profitable move for the studios.

    Anything that could be done to change that Redbox ratio from 5:1 DVD to 5:1 Blu would be a societal good that would gladden my heart.

  40. Just wanted to chime in and thank you all for your contributions. It’s been a fun conversation.

    (I absolutely prefer HD, but dislike bars… although not enough to once again run a projector. Related, I see it as a personal failure that I cannot convince my mom to upgrade her Comcast to HD and she has no interest in DVR.)

  41. “Related, I see it as a personal failure that I cannot convince my mom to upgrade her Comcast to HD and she has no interest in DVR.”

    You, sir, are a bad, bad child. Elder-abuse like this is no joke.

    “I absolutely prefer HD, but dislike bars”

    Yet another piece of evidence for Stanley Kubrick’s uncanny genius. He shot all of his films (except for 2001) with a 1.66 aspect ration because he could see the future

  42. If the studios did professional panandsan rips from the masters (which are 4 or 8K) we would get much higher quality rips than anything a consumer can do to “zoom” to full screen. I am fairly sure full screen versions would also be welcome by those using various streaming services I really don’t understand why this hasn’t happened.

  43. “If the studios did professional panandsan rips from the masters (which are 4 or 8K…”

    FWIW, they’re already doing this on a smaller scale for HBO and the like.

    “If the studios did professional panandsan rips from the masters (which are 4 or 8K) we would get much higher quality rips than anything a consumer can do to “zoom” to full screen.”

    Well, a professional pan ‘n’ scan from the original master certainly would be higher quality than the ‘zoom’ solution. But compared to the massive upgrade from DVD to a ‘zoomed’ Blu, the improvement would be somewhat marginal.

    “I am fairly sure full screen versions would also be welcome by those using various streaming services I really don’t understand why this hasn’t happened.”

    Yeah. That’s my takeaway from this entire thread too: utter bafflement at why both disc and streaming HD sources aren’t providing consumers a choice between ‘normal’ and ‘fullscreen’.

    I’d generally choose ‘normal’. Bill in NC would choose ‘fullscreen’. But whatever marginal additional costs are imposed by having to provide dual versions, it’s gotta be more than offset by increased customer satisfaction leading to more sales.

    (Especially in streaming, the additional cost would be incredibly negligible. The additional cost of dual physical media would be a bit more, which is why I kinda like the Blu-player ‘zoom’ concept, but still it couldn’t be more than what they are currently losing by not satisfactorily serving what seems to be a significant portion of their market.)

  44. My BR player is ancient, but surely a newer player would have this feature.

    I’ll look into upgrading.

    Maybe HDTVs (& HD broadcast standards) should have been 21:9 from the get-go…

    Chucky wrote:

    I’m amazed if it’s true that no Blu players can zoom into ‘fullscreen’

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