Format-shifting: HD DVD to Blu-ray

high def formats By now you’ve probably heard that Toshiba has thrown in the towel and will stop making HD DVDs. That means Sony has finally won a format war! Good for them, I guess. Not so good for the consumers who invested in HD DVD, however. What are you supposed to do with the player and all those discs that you bought?

One option would be to convert your HD DVDs to Blu-ray. Wired has created a “how to” specifically for that purpose:

By converting your movies to a more enduring format, you can ensure your movie collection survives the death of the machine that plays them.

The process is simple in principle but excruciating in practice, thanks to the complexity of the technology, the myriad of applications needed and the predations of an industry that doesn’t want you format-shifting at all.

The three basic steps are ripping, transcoding/authoring, and burning. Converting your discs will take time, and it will definitely cost money. Lots of money.

I’m not sure it’s worth it. You haven’t bought that many HD DVDs yet have you? And if you have, you’re probably better off trying to track down a dual-format player. It’ll save you a bunch of stress, that’s for sure.

Your HD DVDs may be salvaged, but your player is almost certainly a glorified paper weight now.

Read: Convert Your HD DVDs to Blu-ray

6 thoughts on “Format-shifting: HD DVD to Blu-ray

  1. The high-priced PS3 inc. blu-ray probably really did it for Sony.

    However, Microsoft was at least smart enough not to over invest – I wonder how long it will be before the XBOX blu-ray (or dual-format) external drive comes along… that is for those that aren’t busy trying to share their game creations in the new xbox live community games!

  2. I wonder if this will be the tipping point for physical video media with Microsoft(Xbox360) and Apple(AppleTV, iPods, etc) now (starting to) offer digital downloads and rentals of movies and tv. Early days in Canada at least but coming eventually at the level it is in the US.

    I bought an Xbox HDDVD player for the 360 but only because it included a ton of free movies and won’t be getting a Blu Ray player or media to replace it. I bought an AppleTV and so far it has been a worthwhile investment.

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