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Sony's first Blu-Ray disk drive won't be able to play protected movies released on the Blu-Ray format

Sony has said that the company’s first Blu-Ray disc drive won’t play protected movies released under the Blu-Ray format. Sony unveiled its first Blu-Ray computer disk drive, the BWU-100A, this year at the companies “Experience More 2006” event held yesterday in Sydney, Australia.

Sony officials said copy protection and software development issues were behind its decision to release the drive without movie playback support. Among the reasons given was the fact that Blu-Ray commercial content can only be played with HDCP compliant hardware and that currently very few devices actually support HDCP.

Sony is optimistic that the issues will be resolved “soon” but does not have a specific time table available as to when that might take place.  The company emphasizes that the drive is still useful as a mass storage device as each single layer BD-R is able to hold approximately 25GB and the drive is still able to play non-encrypted content. The BWU-100A has a write speed of 2x, is able to burn both single and dual layer BD-R and BD-RE disks and will be available later this month for around $750 USD.



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Well..
By RyanM on 8/11/2006 2:50:07 AM , Rating: 4
Make that reason #265 that I hope BD bites the dust harder than any of Sony's past proprietary crap formats. This just puts their intentions of hosing the consumer right out there in the open.

Now, the question becomes, are people going to let their digital rights get trampled on in the name of "copy protection," or are they going to tell these companies to take their DRM and shove it?




RE: Well..
By bunnyfubbles on 8/11/2006 3:14:44 AM , Rating: 3
HD-DVD isn't any better; and given the 15GB vs. 25GB per layer HD-DVD disadvantage, I'll take BD any day.


RE: Well..
By tuteja1986 on 8/11/2006 3:51:55 AM , Rating: 2
Blu-ray : Mpeg 2 , Still single layer 25GB , scratches like hell , faster , protection material process containments half the produced disk which brings the price up , Java Graphic User Interface , Current movies UI isn’t better than HD-DVD superior UI , some current player can’t even read CD but they can how ever read DVD.

HD-DVD : VC1 , Already in Dual layer 30GB , Slower than Blu-ray , XML GUI , Better IQ than current Blu-ray Content , Better data layer protection , cheaper


RE: Well..
By rklaver on 8/11/2006 4:25:14 AM , Rating: 2
come on now man... If you know everything else about the two formats then you should have known that...

VC-1, MPEG-2 and H.264 can be played on both Blu-Ray and HD-DVD.


RE: Well..
By masher2 (blog) on 8/11/2006 8:48:25 AM , Rating: 2
> "come on now man... VC-1, MPEG-2 and H.264 can be played on [Blu-Ray ].."

In theory. In practice, all the BD releases to date have been encoded in the old MPEG-2 format. That, coupled with the lower storage size of current BD discs (25GB vs. HD-DVD's 30GB) is the factor most quoted for the lower image quality of Blu-Ray at present.




RE: Well..
By Garreye on 8/11/2006 10:52:19 AM , Rating: 2
Ya its 25GB vs 30Gb for now, but quad layer Blu-ray disk storing 100GB have been announced:
http://www.engadget.com/2005/05/19/tdk-announces-1...
whereas for HD-DVD has only announced triple layer which would be 45GB:
http://hometheater.about.com/b/a/169684.htm
so pretty soon its gonna be 100Gb vs 45Gb...and there is work being done on 8-layer 200GB blu-ray discs as well:
http://www.engadget.com/2006/04/12/tdk-hard-at-wor...


RE: Well..
By masher2 (blog) on 8/11/2006 10:59:54 AM , Rating: 2
> "so pretty soon its gonna be 100Gb vs 45Gb..."

Given the problems Blu-Ray has had in getting yields up on dual-layer discs, I think its safe to say these hypothetical 8-layer discs are not going to be available in the very near future.



RE: Well..
By Garreye on 8/15/2006 11:58:39 AM , Rating: 2
Ya I agree that it might take a while before these are in production, but I still think it's important that it's in development, which makes blu-ray more 'future-proof' so that we don't have to have another format introduction once he ~50GB space becomes limiting...


RE: Well..
By creathir on 8/11/2006 11:04:07 AM , Rating: 5
No offense, but until I see the actual disks... I would not hold my breath for the "quad layer" BluRay disk.

- Creathir


RE: Well..
By on 8/11/2006 1:09:26 PM , Rating: 2
Sorry but 'announced' doesn't count for anything. Sony can't even get dual-layer working properly yet, so I'm certainly not holding my breath for some vaporware 4-layer promise.


RE: Well..
By vanka on 8/11/2006 5:51:01 PM , Rating: 2
I wonder just how slow the these quad and 8 layer BD discs will be when or if they are released. The read speed will be shot to hell, not to mention the write speed. How long will it take me to record 200 gigs of data? Five, six days?


RE: Well..
By Garreye on 8/15/2006 12:02:40 PM , Rating: 2
According to the endagdet article I linked to above:
quote:
TDK's disc has four layers and apparently doubles the writing speed of 50GB Blu-ray discs.

So this should help. Hopefully they can double the write speed again for 8-layers. I'm not sure about read speed tho, but if they can double the write speed I don't see why they couldn't do the same for read....


RE: Well..
By rklaver on 8/11/2006 2:15:53 PM , Rating: 2
No not in theory. In Practice the decision is left up to the studios who's doing the encoding in the first place. Here do some reading...

http://www.sonic.com/products/Professional/Scenari...

By the way this software packaged with a realtime hardware HD encoder will set you back $195,000 right now.


RE: Well..
By Strunf on 8/11/2006 2:23:18 PM , Rating: 2
That's not true, I'm pretty sure most if not all the Blu-ray movies or HD-DVD ones don’t use the full capacity of the media, so no the lower quality isn’t related to the capacity available, also I beg your pardon cause I’ve seen many reviews stating that some Blu-ray movies look better than others, so it’s not a question of the space available for the movie but more of how they encode it...


RE: Well..
By masher2 (blog) on 8/11/2006 2:47:17 PM , Rating: 2
> "I'm pretty sure most if not all the Blu-ray movies or HD-DVD ones don’t use the full capacity of the media, so no the lower quality isn’t related to the capacity available"

We're speaking of Blu-Ray's lack of capacity, not HD-DVD. I know for a fact most HD-DVD films don't use the full 30GB-- but that's besides the point. BR films have, at present, only25GB to work with, and are encoded with Mpeg-2, a codec that requires more bits to look good. Now maybe the lower image quality is due to other reasons as well, but the space constraint seems to be the number one suspect.

> " I’ve seen many reviews stating that some Blu-ray movies look better than others..."

Every review I've seen claims Blu-Ray films look worse than their HD-DVD brethren. If you have information to the contrary, post a link.


RE: Well..
By rklaver on 8/11/2006 7:01:42 PM , Rating: 2
How do you know they were encoded with mpeg-2?


RE: Well..
By masher2 (blog) on 8/12/2006 6:26:04 AM , Rating: 2
> "How do you know they were encoded with mpeg-2?"

All current BR movie offerings are encoded with Mpeg-2; its common knowledge. Some people have hypothesized Sony was trying to save some money and avoid the royalty costs of the more advanced codecs, but we really don't know their rationale.


RE: Well..
By Strunf on 8/11/2006 7:50:49 PM , Rating: 2
Blu-ray lack of capacity? What lack of capacity when the movies don’t even use the full 25 GB of a single layer Blu-ray disc nor use the mpeg4 codec.

About the rest, the Blu-ray movies can also be encoded with the EXACT same codec used on the HD-DVDs, if there is a concern about space then they just need to switch to mpeg4 and not put the sound on PCM format (even if most reviews keep praising the Blu-ray sound quality).
Anyway, since the HD-DVD movies don’t use the full 30GB it's pretty obvious you can get the same movie with the “exact” same quality on both formats.

What I said was that some Blu-ray movies look better than others, for instance the House of Flying Daggers looks like crap whereas Underworld Evolution looks great, and so on, there’s a clear difference in quality among the Blu-ray movies and since there’s not many out the movies that look like crap pull the Blu-ray overall quality really down.


RE: Well..
By masher2 (blog) on 8/12/2006 6:29:19 AM , Rating: 2
> "Blu-ray lack of capacity? What lack of capacity "

30GB (HD-DVD) - 25 GB (Blu Ray) = 5GB less capacity. You can argue that lack doesn't affect the end result if you want, but you can't deny the fact that it exists.

> "the Blu-ray movies can also be encoded with the EXACT same codec used on the HD-DVD"

In theory. In practice, you cannot buy a BR movie encoded with anything but Mpeg-2. Maybe that'll change in the future, but the situation today is as I state.


RE: Well..
By Strunf on 8/12/2006 7:59:35 AM , Rating: 2
There's no lack of capacity, the Blu-ray movies have only 5GB less space available for now, that doesn’t imply there's a lack of capacity. If they where using mpeg4 with the sound on a compressed format and it used close to 25 GB of space, only then we would say that the Blu-ray is lacking of space, they would never use uncompressed sound and mpeg2 if space was a concern.

"Maybe that'll change in the future, but the situation today is as I state."
Maybe?... its not maybe is it will, not only you'll see movies in MPEG4 but also on a dual-layer format, and I’m betting on it with any of you.

But yeah keep bashing the Blu-ray player cause it doesn’t really deliver today... like if someone investing 1000$ on a Blu-ray player isn’t doing it thinking in the future.


RE: Well..
By masher2 (blog) on 8/12/2006 10:06:18 AM , Rating: 2
> "If ]Blu Ray] where using mpeg4...and it used close to 25 GB of space, only then we would say that the Blu-ray is lacking of space..."

Oops...many of the current HD-DVD films use more than 25GB, and they're encoded in codecs more advanced than Mpeg-4. Meaning that, a BR film coded in the same format would either run over their current 25GB limit, or be forced to turn up the compression more and degrade image quality.

So, by your own admission, current BR discs are lacking in space.


RE: Well..
By Strunf on 8/12/2006 5:20:14 PM , Rating: 2
"many of the current HD-DVD films use more than 25GB"
And many do not, so what I say stands true probably more often than not.

BR movies do not lack space, if they lacked space they would use the MPEG4 or VC-1 codec and compressed sound instead of mpeg-2/PCM sound, there’s still many options available for the Blu-ray so the 25GB of space is not really an issue for now.

And the VC-1 codec is just like the mpeg-4 codec, it’s hard to tell which one is better especially when the quality of the movies is really close between the two.


RE: Well..
By masher2 (blog) on 8/13/2006 8:53:26 AM , Rating: 2
> "And many do not [use more than 25GB], so what I say stands true probably more often than not."

According to a list of 5 movies I saw posted, 4 used more than 25GB. One used less. Meaning a single-layer BR disc could, with its less capacity, only handle only one of those films without degrading image quality via higher compression.

> "BR movies do not lack space..."

They lack the extra 5GB of space that HD-DVD discs contain. This is a fact that no amount of wriggling can disguise.

> "if [BR] lacked space they would use the MPEG4 or VC-1 codec..."

Except that it would up the cost of the films somewhat...and BR discs are already costlier than HD-DVD. That's why most people surmise Sony chose to stick with the old Mpeg-2, even at the cost of image quality.


RE: Well..
By Strunf on 8/13/2006 9:33:51 PM , Rating: 2
There are HD-DVD movies that use a single layer (15GB)... you’re telling me you based your “many” on only 5 HD-DVD movies when there are over 40 out ? (if I’m not mistaken)

"They lack the extra 5GB of space that HD-DVD discs contain."
I don’t think you understand what the word "lack" really means that or you are using it incorrectly just for the heck of it.

The codec royalties paid for each movie probably don’t make 1% of the total cost...1$ or 2$ more wouldn’t really matter for most, and the BR movies cost about the same as the HD-DVD or even less.


RE: Well..
By masher2 (blog) on 8/14/2006 8:28:42 AM , Rating: 2
> "There are HD-DVD movies that use a single layer (15GB)... "

Really? Name one. It'd have to be an extremely short film.

> "I don’t think you understand what the word "lack" really means"

lack. A particular deficiency or absence. In this case, BR's absence of the 5GB of additional storage that HD-DVD offers.

I understand what a Blu-Ray fan you are, but you're being entirely unrealistic on this issue. BR is likely to offer more capacity in the future. In the present, it offers less. Get over it, and move on.



RE: Well..
By Strunf on 8/14/2006 12:30:04 PM , Rating: 2
“Kiss Kiss Bang Bang”, I don’t know what the movie is about but it lasts for 103 min.

The extra 5GB wouldn’t really matter if they still used the mpeg2 codec and lossless audio, hence it’s not a deficiency, the problem of the bad image quality (when compared to the HD-DVD) like I've been saying is the wrong choice of the video codec combined with crappy conversions... anyone that say that 5GB would make a difference has no idea of he’s talking about.

BR offers more capacity already, BR movies however don’t...for now.

I'm not a BR fan, I do think BR will win the battle but I’ll not buy a BR drive in 2006... I’m just setting the things straight if that makes of me a Blu-ray fan so be it.


RE: Well..
By masher2 (blog) on 8/14/2006 1:01:04 PM , Rating: 2
> "Kiss Kiss Bang Bang”, I don’t know what the movie is about but it lasts for 103 min..."

Thanks. I found another also- Rumor Has It, at 96 minutes. You make a good point-- if HD-DVD can handle at least some movies at single-layer, then its dual-layer format should be good for anything. Meaning that, even when BR has 50GB disks, the extra space won't really be useful for films.

By the way, while fact-checking I stumbled across this comparison of Kiss Kiss Bang Bang and Training Day, two films both released on BR and HD-DVD. On both cases, the author prefers the image quality of the HD-DVD version, and pointing out problems with Blu-Ray's cropping of films, and the unbelievably slow Java-based menu system.

http://bluray.highdefdigest.com/kisskissbangbang.h...


RE: Well..
By Strunf on 8/14/2006 2:30:46 PM , Rating: 2
Yup, the HD-DVD still leads and it will continue to do so for as long as Blu-ray movies use the MPEG-2 codec, I don’t think that even using a 50GB disc a MPEG-2 movie can match the quality of VC-1/MPEG-4 one on a 25/30 GB disc.

The cropping is either a player problem or a bad conversion made by the guys at Warner since those are the only two movies that have that problem.


RE: Well..
By masher2 (blog) on 8/14/2006 4:20:05 PM , Rating: 2
> "The cropping is either a player problem or a bad conversion made by the guys at Warner "

Since a few different BR movies had it, but the same films on HD-DVD did not, the author concluded it was a problem with the player. Not a strike against Blu Ray itself...unless you're planning on purchasing soon, and will thus have to deal with the poor quality of the first players.


RE: Well..
By Zoomer on 8/12/2006 7:35:16 AM , Rating: 2
That should be for disks released in US.


RE: Well..
By psychobriggsy on 8/11/2006 7:56:18 AM , Rating: 2
I thought that Blu-Ray was meant to use that TDK scratch resistant coating to prevent scratches?

In the long run, Blu-Ray is better, but right now HD-DVD is ahead due to better mastering software (that supports VC1 and H264, not just MPEG2), cheaper hardware and cheaper dual-layer production. Basically Blu-Ray is a little behind HD-DVD, it's not a major issue right now, it will be when the PS3 comes out and there are 10m Blu-Ray players in houses by the end of 2007.

However Sony really aren't helping their cause with the consistent frequent issues they keep on having with the format and their related hardware.

As for disc UI, certainly I enjoy spending hours in the menu systems rather than watching the damn film. If the UI starts up with the initial selection being 'Play Movie' then it's a good UI. In the end the underlying mechanism won't matter, it'll be the implementation on each movie.


RE: Well..
By cmlburnett on 8/11/2006 9:20:41 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
As for disc UI, certainly I enjoy spending hours in the menu systems rather than watching the damn film.


I prefer watching DVDs under linux for that very reason. I jump directly to title 1 (or any for that matter) and skip the FBI warning, studio logo, and menus.


RE: Well..
By probedb on 8/11/2006 4:32:03 AM , Rating: 2
Yeah but all HD-DVD movies released so far are dual-layer so 30Gb, all BR movies are single layer. It's alright trying to go on about disc sizes but in the consumer world, people and enthusiasts want the best quality and right now that isn't BR. Expensive hardware and bad quality transfers.

Fair enough BR might get there eventually but it's not off to a very good start. And I was an initial BR supporter for the reasons you're giving.


RE: Well..
By Strunf on 8/12/2006 5:38:09 PM , Rating: 2
Exactly, bad quality transfer and wrong choice of codec is what plagues the Blu-ray corner. The argument about the size is just the HD-DVD supporters trying to have some kind of bragging rights while they can...

In a few months I’m betting the quality of both the HD-DVD and Blu-ray movies will be close to not say equal, there’s no real reason to think otherwise, the Blu-ray will however enjoy of other benefits cause of it’s bigger space, in other words if you support the Blu-ray then you still need to wait, by waiting not only you’ll enjoy movies with better quality but also cheaper players.


Whats the point?
By NagoyaX on 8/11/2006 2:41:44 AM , Rating: 3
Really now whats the point of making a burner that cant read?
So I can burn BD but i cant watch BD movies or nething thats copy protected?

How bout Sony takes a little more time to make a player can do both?




Incompetence,
By giantpandaman2 on 8/11/2006 3:32:04 AM , Rating: 5
If you fail enough, they'll be proud when you do anything right.

So far this year I nominate Sony's Consumer Electronics Division and Microsoft's Windows Division as the most inept and incompetent tech divisions of the year.

Any seconds?


RE: Incompetence,
By redbone75 on 8/11/06, Rating: 0
RE: Incompetence,
By probedb on 8/11/06, Rating: 0
RE: Incompetence,
By Jedi2155 on 8/11/06, Rating: 0
RE: Incompetence,
By gsellis on 8/11/2006 7:50:15 AM , Rating: 3
Only on the Sony part. Microsoft gets another chance. Remember that they said thumbs down to BD and you are starting to see the picture. Copy protection is too draconian and MS does not want to take the heat for Sony and the MPAAs stupidity.


RE: Incompetence,
By FITCamaro on 8/11/2006 10:22:28 AM , Rating: 3
Sony yes.

Microsoft no. Lets see you write a new operating system from pretty much scratch and see it get done on time. Better that its released when its finished than too early and be plagued with huge issues. There will still be issues even when its released, but with all new code, thats to be expected.

Software projects almost never get done on time. If they do, its because features were cut and/or bugs were ignored. I see it every day. Look at most games. The features promised when the game was first revealed are almost never the actual final set. Well except for EA NFL and other sports games maybe. But thats because they do almost nothing between titles other than make the graphics better. Its the same shit over and over. Kind of like movies today.


RE: Incompetence,
By giantpandaman2 on 8/11/2006 12:46:48 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Let's see you write...


Stupid response because no single person could do that. Such an argument could be used on ANYTHING. Car, dvd player, etc. So if I criticize a crappy $20 dvd player from Craptronics someone can come along and say "Let's see you build one for $20!"

As for doing software projects, sure Windows is huge. However, XP arguably caught up with the Mac OS 5 years ago.

And since then? They've fallen waaaaaay behind. Now, you may say, "Well, they have a bigger job." Well, guess what, they have more resources, money, and whatever else they need to get the job done. They simply haven't. If that's not incompetence then I don't know what is.


RE: Incompetence,
By cciesquare on 8/12/2006 8:53:23 AM , Rating: 3
Incompetence is when people take an example to mean literatlly....some people I tell you....

The example is made to allow you to put things in perspective. People tend to see the small things without having a larger view of the issue.

Microsoft is a huge company, its OS is installed on a lot of computers. Whereas Apple owns like a few percentage of shares.

Try satisfying something like 80% of computer users compare with say 5% of computer users.

Right...use more resources....use more money. You think that will help you build a better product or accelerate its release??? Have you been on a project? Have you actually worked? Throwing more bodies, on a project so that more people can help get it done faster has never worked. Sorry but money or being the most famous nerd, cant get you everything, not even releasing an OS on time.


RE: Incompetence,
By giantpandaman2 on 8/12/2006 6:41:02 PM , Rating: 2
Whoa there, mudslinger, take a breath. Personal attacks about someone you don't even know just make you look desperate.

Using your argument then no one can criticize Windows simply because they have more people to please. Comparing them to OSX or Linux or anything that's not a near monopoly is worthless. Talk about a weak argument.

Did I say anything about using more money or resources? I said that they HAVE the resources, money, etc. to accomplish the task and they haven't.

But, hey, why don't we use MS's history to prove my point.

Let's look at the past 3 versions of consumer Windows products. 95, 98, XP. All were successively better and more stable. Let's see, all had a 3 year or less cycle. MS did it in the past...but it's been almost 5 years since XP. 2+ more years of development time, many dropped features, and it's still not released.


RE: Incompetence,
By Wwhat on 8/13/2006 10:07:37 PM , Rating: 2
I bet we could all learn to code and write an OS from scratch in the time microsoft takes for vista/longhorn actually.


RE: Incompetence,
By Burning Bridges on 8/15/2006 5:10:36 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Lets see you write a new operating system from pretty much scratch and see it get done on time.

AFAIK Vista isn't exactly either of those.

However I agree that it is better for it to be released complete than looking like swiss cheese.

However looking at XP and things...


RE: Incompetence,
By BladeVenom on 8/11/2006 10:24:56 AM , Rating: 1
Just one thing to say to Sony, HA HA!


RE: Incompetence,
By RMTimeKill on 8/11/2006 10:48:52 AM , Rating: 1
Sony FTL! BR is getting to look more and more and more like a bad joke gone wrong...


RE: Incompetence,
By Chadder007 on 8/11/2006 12:16:52 PM , Rating: 2
Agreed. It has become laughable for Sony.


RE: Whats the point?
By h0kiez on 8/11/2006 3:54:33 PM , Rating: 2
I think Sony's strategy is to come out with an entire line of products all aimed to do nothing except make the PS3 look cheap.


RE: Whats the point?
By otispunkmeyer on 8/15/2006 12:38:37 PM , Rating: 2
seems fair enough to me

1) anyone who buys into first gen of any new tech always loses. you cant do it and expect everything to be great because it wont be

2) even if it could read protected movie content....how many graphics cards actually have a HDCP enabled output?

3) in turn how many people have HDCP compliant monitors/tv's?

not very many i'd wager.

its the price you pay for having to the first with the first gen of new tech. you pay over the odds and then under delivered.

same happened with HDTV. everyone rushed to get one... when most only sported component in. now theres HDMI, HDCP, DVI etc

same again with 3G phones, they were big n bulky, battery life sucked the big one, and reception/quality was horrendous. its all good now though

never buy first gen... its an idiotic idea


I guess what they want us to do is...
By jon1003 on 8/11/2006 3:03:52 AM , Rating: 4
So Sony is saying we can only watch pirated movies without protection on this player. OK Sony, message received! Will do!




By Wonga on 8/11/2006 3:48:46 AM , Rating: 2
LOL.

I have to say, yes early adopters can often expect to be burned with glitches etc, but this seems like a fundamental flaw with the drive. If I did own one, I'd probably just return it if it doesn't do what it should.

That being said, did Sony actually ever guarantee this drive would play Blu Ray movies? I'm in a big of a hurry at the sec, so I can't go checking round web sites.


RE: I guess what they want us to do is...
By Assimilator87 on 8/11/2006 3:48:53 AM , Rating: 2
That's exactly what I was thinking. I guess Sony just doesn't want to make money this round.


RE: I guess what they want us to do is...
By Xavian on 8/11/2006 3:54:31 AM , Rating: 2
You see sony seems to have a conflict of interest, Sony Pictures wants blu-ray that is secure as fort knox, where nobody can copy anything and they make tonnes of money (or none if people decide not to buy). However Sony's Electronic's division wants to make on blu-ray players and burners.

Both interests seem incompatitible and will tear either Sony or Blu-ray apart.

I guess this is what happens when a marketing PR person takes over Sony.


By Xavian on 8/11/2006 3:55:04 AM , Rating: 2
*make money


By jimmy43 on 8/11/2006 4:13:39 AM , Rating: 2
Good Point. Sony seems to be tearing itself apart. All their divisions are pulling in different directions, and ultimately, nothing is getting done right. It would probably be a huge benefit to them to separate the company.


RE: I guess what they want us to do is...
By ToeCutter on 8/11/2006 9:47:31 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Sony Pictures wants blu-ray that is secure as fort knox,


Isn't this the very same reason that Apple ate Sony's lunch right out of their lunchbox with iPod?

I read articles years ago about MiniDisc engineers at Sony predicting big problems if they ignored MP3, but Sony Music won the fight (while it now appears that Sony is losing the war).

Sony ignored the MP3 format, while Apple found a way for both open and proprietary formats to share the same platform. And they've made BILLIONS offering songs on iTunes.

I've heard some analysts claim that PS3 will save BluRay. I beg to differ? Market penetration is going to be S L O W at $500 a pop for PS3, while MS cashes in on HD-DVD with Xbox 360.

Sony's in deep sh*t right now and no one is pulling up on the stick...


By masher2 (blog) on 8/11/2006 9:55:21 AM , Rating: 2
> "And they've made BILLIONS offering songs on iTunes..."

No. Apple lost money on iTunes the first two and a half years of its existence. It just started to break even a few months ago (April 2006).

iTunes is a pretty much just a tool to sell iPods.




RE: I guess what they want us to do is...
By rushfan2006 on 8/11/2006 11:21:21 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
And they've made BILLIONS offering songs on iTunes.


Post the source on where you got they made BILLIONS...that's one of the silliest things I've heard/read all week. But its one of the funniest "opionions posted as facts" I've read, so at least on that point..thanks for the laugh.


RE: I guess what they want us to do is...
By ToeCutter on 8/12/2006 8:33:13 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Post the source on where you got they made BILLIONS...that's one of the silliest things I've heard/read all week. But its one of the funniest "opionions (sic) posted as facts" I've read, so at least on that point..thanks for the laugh.


Easy, lightning.

The post should have read SOLD , not made . If we had an EDIT function, I would have edited the post. I'm grateful the post even made it on the board after receiving several "Oooops! Something went wrong, we've sent the details to the webmaster." messages while trying to post!

I was trying to illustrate that Apple, not associated with the music distribution until they started selling hardware that played music, was able to compete with Sony Music as a music distributor by selling BILLIONS of songs thru iTunes. No conspiracy here, not trying to pass "opinion as fact", just a sh*tty forum interface, nothing more.

Congrats on error checking my post with such certainty towards its inaccuracy. Here's a star, now go get yourself a cookie!

(Sorry, I expected a more "cereberal" response from a fellow Rush fan!)


By masher2 (blog) on 8/12/2006 10:25:22 AM , Rating: 2
> "The post should have read SOLD , not made..I was trying to illustrate that Apple...was able to compete with Sony Music as a music distributor by selling BILLIONS of songs."

Actually, they just hit the one billion mark ealier this year. They're a long way from multiple billions yet.

As for Apple competing with other music distributors-- its easy to sell a ton of product, if you're willing to sell at a loss and hemorrhage money while doing it. Profitably competing is the real trick.



Sony
By AppaYipYip on 8/11/06, Rating: 0
RE: Sony
By Tebor0 on 8/11/2006 8:13:32 AM , Rating: 2
I hardly believe that DRM is an innovation we're all happy about.


RE: Sony
By Frank M on 8/11/2006 8:20:47 AM , Rating: 2
What innovations are you talking about? Their PS3 is basiccally just a PS2 on steroids. The controller was ripped off of Super Nintendo, and its motion sensing was ripped off of the Wii.


RE: Sony
By masher2 (blog) on 8/11/2006 8:55:26 AM , Rating: 2
> "What innovations are you talking about? Their PS3 is basiccally just a PS2 on steroids"

Whatever one may feel about the PS3 or Sony's business practices, you can't deny that Cell is an innovative processor, to say the least.


RE: Sony
By ToeCutter on 8/11/2006 9:51:54 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
Whatever one may feel about the PS3 or Sony's business practices, you can't deny that Cell is an innovative processor, to say the least.


Cell is "Wizz-Bang" tech: Impressive, but not very practical.

With a meager 20% yield on the fab line, this is NOT an ecomonical processor, something absolutely required for volume sales.

PS3 will both expensive and limited in availability. How Sony plans to succeed with it defies rationale...


RE: Sony
By microAmp on 8/11/2006 10:08:15 AM , Rating: 2
Wasn't that 20% only related to IBM. Sony hasn't released any yield numbers and doubt they will. Only way to know is from an inside source.


RE: Sony
By masher2 (blog) on 8/11/2006 10:57:44 AM , Rating: 2
> "With a meager 20% yield on the fab line, this is NOT an ecomonical processor"

Well, given that most of processors that "fail" can still be sold with 2 or more SPE's disabled, the whole concept of "yield" needs to be rethought here. The economics are quite different than that of a traditional processor.


RE: Sony
By ToeCutter on 8/12/2006 9:15:46 AM , Rating: 2
Well said.

However, PS3 design specs call for a minimum of 7 active SPEs. If a Cell has more than 2 "failed" SPEs on the die, it won't be used in PS3 (unless Sony downgrades the PS3 specs once again).

IBM is currently the only fab for Cell. While other fabs will most likely come online in the near future, having a single fab facility offering such low yields (for chips that fit the PS3 design constraints) seem to elude to some challenges for Sony to ship in volume when the PS3 is eventually released.

Economics for Cell yield as a platform need to be reconsidered, but for PS3, the situation looks pretty grim. With PS3 total manufacturing costs nearly double of what MS is paying for Xbox 360, Sony is facing a serious disadvantage in simply entering the market. Combine the total cost situation with Microsoft's year long lead in the market and things really look tough for PS3, and more importantly, Sony as corporation.

Cell Yields Article: http://www.reed-electronics.com/electronicnews/art...

PS3 Production Costs Article: http://news.com.com/PlayStation+3+component+prices...


RE: Sony
By masher2 (blog) on 8/12/2006 10:17:40 AM , Rating: 2
> "IBM is currently the only fab for Cell"

Sony has been producing Cell in their Nagasaki Fab for several months now.

> "having a single fab facility offering such low yields (for chips that fit the PS3 design constraints)"

In the context of the Reeves interview, the yield rates appear to be for Cell with all 8 SPE's functioning-- not the minimum 7 required for the PS3.

Furthermore, the interview was in early July, with a VP probably quoting from a yield report from at least a month earlier. There's still several months to improve yields...and don't forget the Nagasaki Fab is due to convert to 65nm in early 2007, a step which will improve yields further.


RE: Sony
By OrSin on 8/11/2006 10:14:29 AM , Rating: 2
IBM created the cell processor. Sony just decided to use it. Sony is backwards copmany at this piont. Samsung and Toshisha invent and manufacture. Sony just puts other people pieces together and puts thier name on it. Right now Blue-Ray is dead to me. It might be better so they say but it will lose the same way beta did. Too expensive and too many people having to listen to sony rules on how its done. HD-DVD is so close technolgy wise, but without all the bullshit.


RE: Sony
By masher2 (blog) on 8/11/2006 10:54:42 AM , Rating: 2
> "IBM created the cell processor. Sony just decided to use it..."

No. Cell was created by IBM, Toshiba, and Sony. All three had engineers in the mix, and contributed to the final design.


Oh wow.
By phisrow on 8/11/2006 3:01:02 AM , Rating: 2
So, costs the thick end of a thousand dollars, can't actually play what it is supposed to play.

At least it is a mass storage device inferior to the tape drives whose price bracket it shares!

Pathetic.




RE: Oh wow.
By bunnyfubbles on 8/11/06, Rating: 0
RE: Oh wow.
By redbone75 on 8/11/2006 4:20:10 AM , Rating: 1
I'll have to disagree with you. It's not whining. Yes, early adopters do pay a premium to be among the first to have new tech, but they still get to experience that new technology in full, albeit with possibly a few bugs. People who buy this thing without the knowlege that it won't play protected content are most likely going to be in for a very rude and expensive shock. Tell me, how many people do you know buy optical drives exclusively for data backup?


RE: Oh wow.
By BZDTemp on 8/11/2006 4:58:20 AM , Rating: 2
Try waiting for a tape to fast forward to the data you need just once and you will rethink which media is the inferior one. I'll take access times in tenths of a second over access times measured in lots of seconds or even miniutes any day.

It seems to me a lot of people in this thread need to stop focusing on BD as just being a media for movies. There is more to life than having a multi media PC so try thinking outside that box for a moment.


RE: Oh wow.
By masher2 (blog) on 8/11/2006 8:52:27 AM , Rating: 2
> "So, costs the thick end of a thousand dollars, can't actually play what it is supposed to play..."

I think you're reading too much into this. No one is going to buy this recorder to watch movies. They're going to use it for archiving data. For the market this drive is intended-- lack of movies isn't any great loss.



RE: Oh wow.
By bob661 on 8/11/2006 10:04:25 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
They're going to use it for archiving data. For the market this drive is intended-- lack of movies isn't any great loss.
We're the market for this. J6P isn't going to buy this. They'll buy the set top box version to hook up directly to their HD TV's.


RE: Oh wow.
By WarlordBB on 8/11/2006 10:51:39 AM , Rating: 4
I received one of the very first drives (I pre-ordered over a month ago and had it send overnight).

I bought it because I wanted Blu ray on my HTPC. I could care less about it's writing capabilities.

So no, I don't think anyone is reading too much into this. I'd wager that almost every single person that pre-order this thought to themselves, "cool, I'll be able to play Blu ray on my computer". It might not have been a primary reason, but it was surely one of the reasons.

IMO, Sony dropped the ball big time. They could have had lots of very vocal (as most early adopters are) supporters out talking about how cool it is that they can play Blu ray on their computer, instead, everyone's up in arms talking about what a stupid move this is.

No way this was smart.


RE: Oh wow.
By masher2 (blog) on 8/11/2006 11:11:00 AM , Rating: 1
> "I bought it because I wanted Blu ray on my HTPC. I could care less about it's writing capabilities."

HTPCs are a fringe market by themselves. HTPCs with BR capability are-- given the current costs and the near-total lack of BR movies-- a market so fringe as to be nonexistent.

Worse, even if the drive DID support video playback of protected content, you couldn't get the stream to a monitor yet, given the curent lack of HDMI support on video cards.

A BR burner is designed for burning discs, not for video playback in an HTPC. However you may want to use the drive, its core market is for doing backups or archiving, not for watching movies.

In short, if you want to play movies, wait a few months, then buy a drive that plays movies. Don't buy a burner not designed for the task.

> "I'd wager that almost every single person that pre-order this thought to themselves, "cool, I'll be able to play Blu ray on my computer""

I'd wager the exact opposite. I paid more for my first DVD burner than this BR drive...and I think I had it two years before I even attempted to pop in a DVD movie.


RE: Oh wow.
By DigitalFreak on 8/11/2006 1:04:57 PM , Rating: 1
I love people with more money than sense.


RE: Oh wow.
By lewisc on 8/11/2006 5:14:16 PM , Rating: 3
And I love people with more jealousy than braincells.


By rykerabel on 8/11/2006 12:49:32 PM , Rating: 2
Both HD-DVD and BR-DVD will fail as storage medium because of the new holodiscs being released this fall. As for media medium, consumers are idiots and whichever format has the best hype will win.




By rykerabel on 8/11/2006 12:50:02 PM , Rating: 2
RE: Both HD-DVD and BR-DVD will fail as storage medium
By TomZ on 8/11/2006 1:11:04 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Both HD-DVD and BR-DVD will fail as storage medium because of the new holodiscs being released this fall. As for media medium, consumers are idiots and whichever format has the best hype will win.

The problem with your argument is first that you're ignoring the cost of the holographic discs and equipment, which are much higher than BD or HD-DVD. Second, you're also ignoring the industry-wide buy-in that BD and HD-DVD have from movie studios, consumer electronics companies, PC equipment companies, and software vendors.

Just because the new technology can be a technical replacement for BD and HD-DVD doesn't mean it meets the other business requirements to be successful.


By lewisc on 8/11/2006 5:13:44 PM , Rating: 2
While I'm not sure about holodisks (Can I plug them into my jetpack?) I think you're inoring many of the big points in this discussion: the fact that the production of blue ray disks is full of issues, which will probably only worsen as they try and increase the number of layers. The companies you mentioned in partnership aren't in it for the business requirements, they're in it to sell to us, consumers, a platform on which to watch movies. Movie studios, consumer electronics companies, software vendors...they are not interested in people backing up as the primary use of these drives, they are looking to sell the latest and greatest HD platform.

I'm not going to claim to be any kind of industry expert, but surely, common sense dictates that for large scale backups, a medium as easily corrupted and damaged as either the HD-DVD or BR would be useless, as well as highly uneconomical at this point. Does anyone have any examples of companies that use regular DVDs for backup, out of interest? I'd be very surprised to hear of them being used on a large scale.


By TomZ on 8/11/2006 10:12:40 PM , Rating: 2
I agree that for data storage, BD and HD-DVD might be short-lived, maybe just for a few years. For movies, however, I'll bet they will have a much longer life.


DRM needs to die.
By exdeath on 8/11/2006 11:45:00 AM , Rating: 2
How popular are PS2 mod chips are and how rampant is piracy on the PS2 platform? Explain to me now how piracy is such a major problem... when you're done explain to me how the PS2 is so successful with the largest market share and hottest selling games if piracy is such a concern.

DRM is for media Nazi's who would, if they could get away with it, charge you $5 every time you merely heard the name of a song, movie, or game and never sell you a tangible product (see the article about the PS4 not having a disc drive, etc). Who wouldn't want to sell nothing for something?

I thought thats what concerts and stuff where for (to pay money for an experience and not walk away with a product).




Sony Flat Panel TVs are more exciting
By Blackraven on 8/11/2006 12:13:45 PM , Rating: 2
What Sony seems to be best at at the moment is in its LCD TV divsion.

Their BRAVIA lineup is indeed a killer and that is what raked in profits to make up for poor revenue on PS2 and PSP sales.

I'd take a Sony BRAVIA anytime over a Sharp Aquos :)


By IceTron on 8/11/2006 12:56:44 PM , Rating: 1
I agree. I just bought/charged their new 3LCD rear projection 50" TV and its fucking gorgous. As much as I hate Sony, they still make the best TV's in the industry.


By ojingoh on 8/11/2006 8:13:35 PM , Rating: 2
bravia is a nice rp tv, but they don't actually make that item, that is a rebranded Hitachi iirc. also their LCD tvs are made by Sony/Lucky Goldstar co-venture with panels made in Korea by LG; sony ended up buying in when they ended up needing guaranteed production, LG was the cheapest for the quality (Sharp is the best LCD manufacturer IHMO.)
Sony blew it bigtime. they had capital to invest in fab back in the day, but chickened out and have gone fabless for more and more 'core competency' items. seriously, sony = television, and if they don't get that, it doesn't say much for sony's direction. blue ray? ps3? hmmm.


5 Years from now
By Rage187 on 8/11/2006 10:15:40 AM , Rating: 3
BluRay is going to appear on a top 10 list of failed technologies of 2000-2009. I'm guessing Sony is aiming for the number 1 spot with this latest announcement.




I hope Sony....
By marvdmartian on 8/11/2006 9:04:36 AM , Rating: 2
...has a LOT of warehouse space, or at least limits the production of this drive, because I really can't see any reason why someone with even a tiny bit of computer knowledge would buy one of these drives!

I personally won't make the move to whichever format wins this new "war", for likely 5 years (or whenever the price of switching over finally becomes cheaper than the dvd's we all use now). Why? Why should I be one of the "gotta have it now" schmucks that feel they NEED the newest technology, no matter the limitations or exhorbitantly high price?? While I appreciate those people for helping to bring the cost down eventually, I'll never be one......and I definitely won't be one that says they bought a semi-crippled drive from Sony!




By rushfan2006 on 8/14/2006 9:37:55 AM , Rating: 2
Wow the debate on this thing is interesting...something that is so obvious and yet people debate it like they are pouring over something that is actually meaningful and important.

Its a blu-ray RECORDER, doesn't play protected movies. It costs $750.

What's the debate? You guys too impatient to wait for other drives with the features you want to come out?

You that eager to drop nearly $800 on this thing just for the cool factor?

Patience people...patience....nothing to debate about here.

And unless you are rolling in the dough, I don't see a need for this outside of business/professional. A hobbyist/home user jumping at such an early drive so high priced ..just makes no sense to me.

Business need I can see for archiving data.





Another mis-truth on DailyTech
By SunAngel on 8/12/06, Rating: -1
RE: Another mis-truth on DailyTech
By masher2 (blog) on 8/13/2006 9:02:14 AM , Rating: 2
> "This means it requires a graphics card that is HDCP compliant and also a monitor/lcd that is HDCP compliant. "

It's more than that. You also need a BR playback application that decodes HDCP...and that software doesn't exist yet either.

So once HDCP compatible graphics cards, monitors, and playback software become available, this player will (hopefully) play movies...but right out of the box, it won't.



RE: Another mis-truth on DailyTech
By SunAngel on 8/13/06, Rating: -1
By masher2 (blog) on 8/13/2006 2:25:57 PM , Rating: 2
> "You have to be kidding. Do you really feel Sony would release a hardware device with no software support for it? "

It's not my opinion, its that of Sony's Vincent Bautista:
quote:
The second reason, according to Bautista, is that BD playback software that can decrypt HDCP isn't "released as a saleable item yet". Today, the only HDCP-supporting BD playback application is the OEM version of Intervideo WinDVD BD that's bundled with Sony's VAIO VGN-AR18GP notebook...
I'm not sure why the Intervideo product wouldn't work with this recorder, but apparently Sony believes it won't.


By giantpandaman2 on 8/13/2006 2:31:46 PM , Rating: 2
1: The "comments" section on Daily Tech is very different than the forum section on Anandtech. You, supposedly, know they're two different entities yet you treat them the same.

2: Comment on Anandtech on the Anandtech forums. (The Anandtech forums are verrrry much more mature than the Daily Tech forums so your comment about Anandtech's "commentators" is just BS.)

3: You don't have to read the comments.

4: BD-Rom play on all computers is horribly broken. A review on the Vaio desktop you mentioned also had BSOD's. Sony has basically thrown up it's hands and said, look, BD-Rom play is not supported. It probably won't be supported for several months because DRM is holding EVERYTHING back. Sony simply doesn't know, and rather than get a class action lawsuit on their hands they're saying, nope, it doesn't work. Read the LINKED article with what the Sony guy says. (And PS-Website product information is wrong all the time.)

5: Why should Anandtech analyze it's mission statement as it pertains to Daily Tech?

6: Your innuendo about bias because of advertising has zero hard facts to back it up. Before accusing people of something you might want to have some evidence.

As for the "body of ill-informed, non-fact finding, bigoting commentators" welcome to the Internet. Make better informed comments, enlighten the "unwashed masses", and quit whining.


RE: Another mis-truth on DailyTech
By rrsurfer1 on 8/13/2006 6:17:43 PM , Rating: 2
Reviewing your comment history on DT is telling. You're either a Sony fanboy, or your a nationalistic japanese who will support sony regardless. Same difference. I think their certainly IS a bias on DT, at least in many forum poster's minds. The bias comes as a result of Sony attempting to "take" the consumer for everything they possibly can, be it proprietary media, "root" software DRM or whatever. Frankly, I'm sick of them and as far as I'm concerned the japanese can have their products and feel special that you're buying in-country. Hopefully the rest of the world will judge the company by it's actions in the marketplace.

Before you go accusing others of bias you may want to take a look inward.


RE: Another mis-truth on DailyTech
By Strunf on 8/13/2006 9:50:01 PM , Rating: 2
You know Toshiba is actually... Japanese too don’t you.
You probably know also that at the head of Toshiba is a ... Japanese and at the head of SONY is a ... British/American.
You probably know too that the Blu-ray disc as many non Japanese companies on its “Board director seats” whereas the HD-DVD has none.

I don’t know dude but if you look to the facts, SONY is far more open than Toshiba... and the Blu-ray is clearly more international than the HD-DVD.


RE: Another mis-truth on DailyTech
By TomZ on 8/13/2006 11:53:33 PM , Rating: 2
WTH are you talking about? Are you saying that Sony is not a Japanese company because its CEO is a Briton? What does Toshiba have to do with anything? What does BD have to do with it - the OP was complaining about Sony the company? Sheesh.


RE: Another mis-truth on DailyTech
By Strunf on 8/14/2006 7:10:46 AM , Rating: 2
The opening was complaining about SONY and about the Japanese companies. Hence my post is right on the target and it's you that don’t have any idea of he's talking about... Sheesh.


RE: Another mis-truth on DailyTech
By rrsurfer1 on 8/14/2006 5:30:46 PM , Rating: 2
Not too sure what your attacking about my prior post... I never said anything about country of origin of bluray vs hddvd...


RE: Another mis-truth on DailyTech
By Strunf on 8/14/2006 7:08:07 PM , Rating: 2
"Frankly, I'm sick of them and as far as I'm concerned the japanese can have their products and feel special that you're buying in-country."
Hence my point, if you boycott the Japanese products you are boycotting both the Blu-ray and HD-DVD products, afterwards I just was showing that from the two the Blu-ray and SONY are more open to international people and companies than Toshiba and its HD-DVD.


RE: Another mis-truth on DailyTech
By TomZ on 8/13/2006 11:45:52 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I enjoy reading DailyTech. Even though I know very well this site is paid and thus heavily biased towards certain products, the comments to this article should be a wake up call to the negative influence it is having on its readers. DailyTech is alienating itself by growing a body of ill-informed, non-fact finding, bigoting commentors.

What a load of crap. Sorry, but I think that many of the regular readers of DT are pretty well-informed and can make judgements about technology news without being taken by the hand by DT writers.

I also find it very ironic that you would post the exact type of comment that you are yourself complaining about. You present no information about Sony's BD product, and make factless assertions defending Sony is a very biased way, IMO.
quote:
The foul language, the non-constructive comments, and the bickering back and forth has definitely turned this forum into the ghetto of tech sites (although THG is truely the ghetto of ghettos).

It's called debate - and if you don't like it, then don't read the comments. I'm not sure why it threatens you that people can express their opinions. If you read a comment that doesn't make sense, then mod it down or hit the Reply button and say something intelligent. Contribute positively instead of complaining.


RE: Another mis-truth on DailyTech
By Wwhat on 8/13/2006 10:18:14 PM , Rating: 2
There is hate for sony because they sneak in rootkits and malware and such on people's computers to take away consumers rights, also they make devices that fall apart too soon

BTW, it is typical that they would include intervideo's player with their product because the latest EULA of intervideo states that they can 'gather any personal information' from you, that fits in sony's corperate philisophy.


RE: Another mis-truth on DailyTech
By griffynz on 8/14/2006 5:12:13 AM , Rating: 2
I have lined Sony's pockets for many years...thats about to end!
First they release the HD ready TV...now you can't use it with HD movies because 'Sony Pictures' wants you too have a HDCP chipset on-board. Then they release a Blu-ray drive that doesn't play movie discs, that will work fine with the HD ready TV I guess...
Dig that hole deeper...
I run a HTPC, and was planning on adding this type of drive to play HD films as well as DVD's, guess I'm glad I didn't get this one!

And to anyone who says 'Sony never said it would play Movies' get REAL, all SONY talked about in the Blu-ray arena is the MOVIES because that is about all you will ever buy on these discs (except blank...single layered...) It still cost around nz$12 for a dual layer DVD-r disc vs. 50cents for a DVD-r single layer disc where I live!!! (p.s. my supplier doesn't even stock them he has to get them in)
Cheaper to buy another Hard-drive!

So the wait continues for real HD Drives that actually do more than one thing...


RE: Another mis-truth on DailyTech
By Strunf on 8/14/2006 7:38:02 AM , Rating: 2
Dude... HD-DVD may also require you to have a HDCP compliant system. The HD-DVD fans do a nice job spreading fake info all over the web and then obviously we have clue-less people complaining.

There are other Blu-ray drives on the market if don’t want to buy a SONY one, I don’t know however if they support movie playback or not.


RE: Another mis-truth on DailyTech
By masher2 (blog) on 8/14/2006 8:20:43 AM , Rating: 2
> "There are other Blu-ray drives on the market if don’t want to buy a SONY one, I don’t know however if they support movie playback or not"

At present, none do. They're simply data archival solutions, given the current problems with BR and DRM.


RE: Another mis-truth on DailyTech
By Strunf on 8/14/2006 12:17:14 PM , Rating: 2
The problems are less than what most people think... there's just a lack of software support for now, and they say you'll need to update the software later on to play BR movies.


By masher2 (blog) on 8/14/2006 8:19:52 AM , Rating: 2
> "I run a HTPC, and was planning on adding this type of drive to play HD films as well as DVD's, guess I'm glad I didn't get this one! "

First of all, why would you buy a recorder if you simply wanted video playback? Secondly, this drive *will* support playback of protected movies-- once HDCP compliant video cards and BR playback software is available. The drive just doesn't support playback out of the box...because these other elements are not yet available.

> "And to anyone who says 'Sony never said it would play Movies' get REAL, all SONY talked about in the Blu-ray arena is the MOVIES "

On the contrary, from the beginning Sony talked about the advantages of BR for data storage. This drive is oriented to that market, not video playback.


wow, aren't we smart today
By iseeumbpeople on 8/11/06, Rating: -1
RE: wow, aren't we smart today
By mindless1 on 8/11/2006 7:45:55 PM , Rating: 2
Translation- Sony rushed this to market to counter Toshiba, but Sony's product isn't finished yet.

If they were $40 it'd be one thing, but these could end up as fairly expensive doorstops.


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