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Print 40 comment(s) - last by zombiexl.. on Jul 27 at 7:20 AM

Microsoft will cut the price of its HD DVD add-on August 1

Microsoft introduced its HD DVD player for the Xbox 360 last November for a price of $199 USD. The Xbox 360 launched without a high definition disc player, so the USB-based HD DVD add-on gave Microsoft the additional firepower necessary to combat the PlayStation 3's standard Blu-ray disc drive.

Through the end of June, Microsoft had sold over 155,000 of the HD DVD add-ons and proclaimed it the "biggest-selling accessory" ever for a console.

Now, Microsoft has seen fit to reduce the price of its most expensive accessory for the Xbox 360. Effective August 1, the HD DVD add-on will retail for $179 USD. In addition, customers who purchase the peripheral between August and September 30 will also qualify to receive five free HD DVD movies.

"With the price reduction to $179, the Xbox 360 HD DVD Player continues to be the most affordable way to enjoy high definition," said Microsoft's Jeff Bell. "From the beginning, we set out to offer Xbox 360 owners an unrivaled high-definition experience, with a choice of optical discs on the HD DVD format and digital downloads through Xbox LIVE Marketplace -- both of which have a selection of the best content Hollywood has to offer."

Microsoft will highlight the HD DVD add-on price reduction by offering the movie "300" on demand in HD beginning August 14 through Xbox LIVE. Also on deck will be a free download of the season one pilot of "Heroes." "300" and "Heroes: Season 1" will also be available on HD DVD.



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Still overpriced
By zombiexl on 7/26/2007 9:26:54 AM , Rating: 5
Considering the guts of this unit (namely the drive) can be had off of ebay for under $80 (and has been that price for months), I would have expected a bigger drop in price.

I already have one, so I guess it shouldnt matter to me.




RE: Still overpriced
By A5 on 7/26/2007 9:28:30 AM , Rating: 3
Agreed - $150 makes a lot more sense.

Also, that picture is weird. :P


RE: Still overpriced
By darkpaw on 7/26/2007 10:25:00 AM , Rating: 2
Hmm.. I was unaware of this. Can you give me the model # of the drive? As I posted above, I was mostly interested in this for my media center PC, but would love to get one at $80 instead of $180.


RE: Still overpriced
By darkpaw on 7/26/2007 10:33:05 AM , Rating: 2
NVM, I found them. Might just go this route instead.


RE: Still overpriced
By phusg on 7/26/2007 11:37:31 AM , Rating: 3
TOSHIBA SD-S802A


RE: Still overpriced
By Spuke on 7/26/07, Rating: 0
RE: Still overpriced
By deeznuts on 7/26/2007 12:49:09 PM , Rating: 2
Too much work? You're kidding right? Unless you mean buying over the internet is too much work. It's not brand new, came out last November. $100 off $1000 is not that much, $100 off $179 is 55%.

Go to ebay, find drive, purchase. Don't see where that is too much work.

To the original poster, thanks I did not know they were this cheap. Since my computer is black I'll have to paint it with Vinyl Dye, but at $80 I'm not scared. Thanks!


RE: Still overpriced
By zombiexl on 7/26/2007 1:24:41 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
To the original poster, thanks I did not know they were this cheap. Since my computer is black I'll have to paint it with Vinyl Dye, but at $80 I'm not scared. Thanks!


No problem.. My desktop PC isnt capable (old video card) of playing HD content, although my laptop is and Ive used my 360 drive on it a few times. It works rather well.


RE: Still overpriced
By LostInLine on 7/26/2007 1:55:46 PM , Rating: 2
The connector is not exactly a standard laptop connector so a mod is needed according to this report.
http://www.xboxhacker.net/index.php?PHPSESSID=a180...


RE: Still overpriced
By Spuke on 7/26/2007 3:51:09 PM , Rating: 1
I was talking about the ebay drives that another poster mentioned. They take the guts out of the drive, get a mounting bracket, then they need a mini IDE converter and some other stuff. That's too much work when the $179 full unit just plugs right into the computer.


RE: Still overpriced
By Spuke on 7/26/2007 3:53:06 PM , Rating: 2
I'm not bagging on you guys wanting to pay less. I'm just saying that I don't feel that the work involved makes up for the $100 savings when the regular just works. You guys have at it. It's not for me. I'll pay the money.


RE: Still overpriced
By therealnickdanger on 7/26/2007 12:09:29 PM , Rating: 3
Actually, $179 - $100 (5 movies @ $20/movie) - $20 (King Kong) = $59. I mean, you wouldn't buy the HD-DVD player and not buy movies, right? Granted, you don't get to pick ANY movie, but the 5 free (6 free) movie deal makes it the best value on the market... even cheaper than your $80 PC drive. And considering this drive can plug into a PC, laptop, or 360 AND has a remote, it makes it even sweeter than the PC-only drive.


RE: Still overpriced
By euclidean on 7/26/2007 12:27:11 PM , Rating: 2
Here's a question....how is them dropping the price of the drive the "Cheapest HD solution"?....360 + drive cost > $299 Toshiba players...


RE: Still overpriced
By AmbroseAthan on 7/26/2007 12:47:12 PM , Rating: 2
I bought a 360 on release day, for games and its DVD playing, but primarily for games. So now, 1.5 years later, the 360 price doesn't add into me looking for an HD-Player now.

So as you said, I can buy a $299 Toshiba player or the Add-on for $179 (which I can then also use on my computer at 1080p glory, would bring it to ~$279 with software). I'm not looking at the Toshiba thinking it is a bargain when I can simply add the drive to my current systems.

Maybe for people who don't want to play games, and don't already have a 360 the Toshiba is a better way to go, but anyone who already has a 360, its a no-brainer.


RE: Still overpriced
By euclidean on 7/26/2007 12:51:56 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
Maybe for people who don't want to play games, and don't already have a 360 the Toshiba is a better way to go, but anyone who already has a 360, its a no-brainer.

Very much true. even at $200 it was still a bargain for people with a 360. But, HD movie watchers >>>>>> 360 gamers...


RE: Still overpriced
By zombiexl on 7/27/2007 7:20:30 AM , Rating: 2
If you dont like the movies, I guess if they arent marked you can always return them to walmart for store credit.

<spots a walmart employee>
Not that I would ever do something like that..


Not a very good value...
By h0kiez on 7/26/2007 9:29:01 AM , Rating: 2
I have a 360 and I'm a fan of it, but with standalone players (HD-A2) pretty regularly available for $199, I'd be inclined to get one of those instead.




RE: Not a very good value...
By CKDragon on 7/26/2007 9:42:52 AM , Rating: 3
The last thing a tech site needs is another 1080i/1080p debate so I won't get into that, but the player that regularly $200 is 1080i. This is 1080p with my Elite's HDMI connection or the VGA cable on any of the other models. I believe component will also output 1080p but it's up to the TV to accept it.

This isn't important to everyone, but it does matter to some.


RE: Not a very good value...
By BPB on 7/26/2007 9:54:48 AM , Rating: 1
quote:
I have a 360 and I'm a fan of it, but with standalone players (HD-A2) pretty regularly available for $199, I'd be inclined to get one of those instead.
Don't forget this uses a USB connection and can be connected to any PC. That makes it very appealing to me.

On a related note, I think blu-ray has the better list of movies, and it appears to me that the gap is growing. There are many more movies on blu-ray that interest me than on HD-DVD.


RE: Not a very good value...
By darkpaw on 7/26/2007 10:23:41 AM , Rating: 3
Since I already have Blu-ray through my PS3, I might have to pick one of these up for my media center PC. $179 isn't bad really, I was already considering getting one at the $200 price.

Great thing about Netflix, can get both HD-DVD and Blu-Ray.


RE: Not a very good value...
By zombiexl on 7/26/2007 10:49:31 AM , Rating: 2
@200 I got mine for 160 with a CC $40 off $200 coupon that was floating around so $179 isnt great.


RE: Not a very good value...
By FITCamaro on 7/26/2007 12:17:03 PM , Rating: 2
Yes but this way with that coupon you would've gotten it for $140.


RE: Not a very good value...
By deeznuts on 7/26/2007 12:52:01 PM , Rating: 2
Only if he needed something else for $20 ;)


HDCP nneded?
By Spyvie on 7/26/2007 10:50:44 AM , Rating: 2
I’m seriously confused about DVI, HDMI, and HDCP.

I have a Q6600 on a Gigabyte board, 4GB RAM, and an EVGA 8800 GTS 320, running Vista 64. My monitor is a Samsung 1660x1050 with DVI in. The specs on the EVGA card say HDCP compliant, but there’s no HDMI out on the card.

Can I use this drive to watch HD-DVD titles on my computer?




RE: HDCP nneded?
By rmaharaj on 7/26/2007 11:22:41 AM , Rating: 2
HDCP is the method of encrypting the data between the source and the display - it isn't tied to a particular connection. You can have HDCP over DVI, HDMI, DisplayPort, pretty much any digital connection. So if you monitor is HDCP compliant, yes, you should be able to watch HD-DVD movies.


RE: HDCP nneded?
By GreenEnvt on 7/26/2007 11:23:08 AM , Rating: 2
HDCP doesn't need HDMI. The DVI ports on your video card will support HDCP if the box lists it as supported.
Assuming your Samsung monitor also supports it via DVI (my Samsung 19" 940bw does), then you are set to watch movies encrypted with HDCP.


RE: HDCP nneded?
By darkpaw on 7/26/2007 11:35:50 AM , Rating: 2
Might need to go beyond what is printed on the box and actually research the individual card. Remember that Nvidia and ATI both got some bad press last year for saying HDCP compliant when the cards actually lacked the HDCP chip.


RE: HDCP nneded?
By omnicronx on 7/26/2007 11:54:47 AM , Rating: 1
The EVGA 8800 GTS 320 most definatly is, but the 6600 is most definatly not ;) unless you paid a premium for a special version of the 6600. (it was the first card to offer hdcp apparently)


RE: HDCP nneded?
By dubldwn on 7/26/2007 12:45:07 PM , Rating: 2
The 6600 is his cpu.


RE: HDCP nneded?
By euclidean on 7/26/2007 12:49:03 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The EVGA 8800 GTS 320 most definatly is, but the 6600 is most definatly not ;) unless you paid a premium for a special version of the 6600. (it was the first card to offer hdcp apparently)

He said the "Q"6600...that's his cpu.


RE: HDCP nneded?
By Spyvie on 7/26/2007 12:03:39 PM , Rating: 2
Thanks for the answers, I prolly should post questions like this on Anandtech's forums or somewhere besides here.

I'm pretty sure my 8800 GTS is OK, along with my monitor, but I'll double check before I purchase anything.

Now, if I can get a grip on 5.1 audio out...


5 Free DVD's
By mdogs444 on 7/26/2007 9:20:26 AM , Rating: 5
Also, as confirmed by MS, do not forget to add that the add-on HD-DVD player will be including 5 free HD-DVD's (most likely by mail).




'300' on Live Marketplace
By Netscorer on 7/26/2007 12:07:51 PM , Rating: 2
So, are they planning to give away '300' HD rental for free? Because that would be awsome!




RE: '300' on Live Marketplace
By Kromis on 7/26/2007 3:20:24 PM , Rating: 2
For reals?

This is madness!


Black
By rfsunbird on 7/26/2007 9:59:08 AM , Rating: 2
When are they going to offer the thing in black to match my Elite. I will not buy it until it is in black.




RE: Black
By omnicronx on 7/26/2007 11:35:47 AM , Rating: 1
everytime dailytech posts about the hd-dvd drive someone brings up this point. I have seen many sites with rubber casings for the hd-dvd kit, in whatever color your want.

heres one on ebay:
http://cgi.ebay.ca/360-HD-DVD-ELITE-MATTE-BLACK-Dr...


Small Error
By MrDiSante on 7/26/2007 11:31:39 AM , Rating: 2
Just felt like pointing out that there's a minor typographical error in the article. It says:
quote:
In addition, customers who purchase the peripheral between August and September 30 will also quality to receive five free HD DVD movies.

I'm pretty sure that should read "qualify".




By VoodooChicken on 7/26/2007 12:32:50 PM , Rating: 2
This deal financially is better than what I got, even if the 5 free movies are crappy. Word of warning for PC users, you will need DVD software to watch movies. I was running Nero and got the HD plugin, but for some reason, it's not playing recent movies (I'm guessing Nero didn't update their keys; I've talked with those Germans for naught). Cyberlink Ultrawhatever is functions well, but I don't like the interface that much. Haven't tried WinDVD and haven't seen anything recent about it.




Uh...
By bkm32 on 7/26/2007 12:46:11 PM , Rating: 1
Two things:

First, how does offering "300" and the "Heroes" pilot as HD downloads "highlight" the add-on price-drop? IMHO, this move clearly states MS's overall strategy concerning HD content--MS wants to beat Blue-Ray and HD by offering the HD download service instead of discs.

Second, (and its a big one) overall cost:

For the Core:
@$299 (System w/o HDD)
+$179 (120GB HDD)
+$179 (HD Add-on)
+$99 (Wireless Networking Adapter)
----------
=$756

For the Premium:
@$399 (System w/20GB HDD)
+$179 (HD Add-on)
+$99 (Wireless Networking Adapter)
----------
=$677

For the Elite:
@$479 (System w/120GB HDD)
+$179 (HD Add-on)
+$99 (Wireless Networking Adapter)
----------
=$757

IT appears the Premium w/HD-DVD Add-on is the best value here relative to the 80GB PS3--just (gulp) $78 more sans 60GB in storage capacity and lacking HDMI.

Two of these options are nearly 160 bucks more than the 80GB PS3, and all are between $180-$260 more than the 60GB PS3. Granted, the different HDD options gives one between 40GB-60GB greater storage capacity, but is it worth between $180-$260?

I don't think so. Therefore, the X360 price drop still needs to happen soon (as in 60 days ago) to get under the overall cost of the PS3. However, even at $199, $299, and $379 for the Core, Premium, and Elite, respectively, the PS3 still costs less, and the PS3's Blu-ray drive can actually be used to play games with a capacity upto 50GB.

With $100 price drop:
Core:
@$199 (System w/o HDD)
+$179 (120GB HDD)
+$179 (HD Add-on)
+$99 (Wireless Networking Adapter)
----------
=$656

Premium:
@$299 (System w/20GB HDD)
+$179 (HD Add-on)
+$99 (Wireless Networking Adapter)
----------
=$577

Elite:
@$379 (System w/120GB HDD)
+$179 (HD Add-on)
+$99 (Wireless Networking Adapter)
----------
=$657

The only configuration that's less than the 80GB PS3 is the Premium ($23), but it still lacks HDMI and 60GB of HDD storage. That HDMI part may change with Halo 3 version, but who knows if that's a limited edition configuration.

MS will be in serious trouble if Sony brings the 80GB version to $499 after the 60GB version sells out. I know this conflicts with Sony's current position, but remember, the week before the announced price drop they denied any price drop. So, it could happen.

Of course, if MS wins beats both Blu-ray and HD-DVD (see point #1), then my second point is moot since the HD-DVD Add-on won't be necessary, unless you really have to "own" the disc, then MS is screwed. The best way for them (MS) to go would be to offer unlimited access to HD content once a consumer has "purchased" it. How they pull that off is beyond me.




"Nowadays you can buy a CPU cheaper than the CPU fan." -- Unnamed AMD executive

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