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CES 2008 - Fighting talk from HD DVD developer and new Regza screens on the way.

Discussion in 'News' started by Phil Hinton, Jan 7, 2008.

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  1. Phil Hinton

    Phil Hinton Editor Staff Member

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    The main subject of Toshiba’s CES opening day should have been a glitzy party and celebration of all things HD DVD. But given the announcement a few days ago regarding Warner Bros. defecting to just producing Blu-ray content, it was fighting talk that came our way. “We have been declared Dead before!” was the rather angry response given in reaction to the subject. Toshiba insisted that the format was far from dying just because of one studio defecting, however the mood in the press rooms after this presentation was that the format had finally reached the end. No explanation has been forthcoming yet as to why Toshiba were caught cold by this announcement from the movie giants, but I can tell you that the tone was certainly of anger.
    On a more positive note, the company announced new Regza screens for the coming year in the US, including a full HD 1080p 32” LCD TV. No details are yet known on when we can expect these to hit UK shores, but we should have some more in-depth detail and comment when we get to interview the company later this week.
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  2. Rob20

    Rob20 Member

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    Having 2 HD disc formats is frankly ludicrous. Especially after the success of single format dvd. If one of the formats has to go then surely the one with the smaller capacity would be best for the consumer in the long run. 50GB compared to 30GB dual layer discs should allow for better picture and sound quality. I'll be glad to see HD-DVD go.
  3. ClarCE

    ClarCE Guest

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    I heard that there was a 51GB HD DVD on the way that would pretty much stamp out all differences.. I will not be happy to see it go as I took the plunge on boxing day and bought an EP30 HD DVD player - and have since spent ~£200 on some pretty discs for it..

    I agree with you in that it makes no sense whatsoever in having different formats - I just assumed that because toshiba were originally behind DVD, and that HD DVD is a standardised format, whereas Blue-ray Disc is not, the natural succession would be to HD DVD.

    After this latest news I'm considering buying a PS3 to do BD, or failing that buying the new Samsung dual-format player..
  4. dBrowne

    dBrowne Member

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    I'll be sad to see region coding being rewarded.
  5. Wideload

    Wideload Member

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    Whilst I also agree that having two HD formats is crazy, I woudl persoanlly be sorry to see HD DVD die out. I slapped an HD DVD drive in my HTPC over xmas and have also spent over £200 on a load of HD DVDs for it....

    Guess at least with an HTCP I can put a BD drive in it but it's the cost of replacing the movies...again!!

    Think it will be a while before I buy any move HD movies on either format. Will just enjoy my collection upscalled....not how it was meant to be!
  6. m455954

    m455954 Member

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    This whole format war has been Sony's fault from the start. They could have joined forces with the HD-DVD camp at the beginning and we would have had a nice single format to naturally move everyone from DVD to HD-DVD, but no, they had to introduce their own proprietary format once again.

    Lets have a look at Sony's track record shall we?

    Betamax - technically superior, but smaller capacity and higher prices let VHS win
    UMD - What a joke - only works in the PSP - guess that 'U' in the name is a bit missleading!
    Memory Stick - they can't even standardise their own memory standard there are so many different flavours!
    Mini-disk - not needed with CD-R/CD-RW but they did it anyway!
    SACD - yet another format war that could have been avoided - once again all Sony's fault!

    And lets look at BD vs HD-DVD

    Regional coding - only on BD
    Draconian DRM - only on BD with BD+
    Overly complex interactive features - after all Java is always such a nice environment to use - NOT!
    Fully featured from day 1 of launch - nope - what are we on now? Profile 2.0? and even that's not ready, and most players aren't even 1.1 compatable, but that doesn't matter as there are no 1.1 disks anyway let alone 2.0!
    Expensive manufacturing costs

    Once again big business screws the consumer - the studios jumped on the BD bandwagon mainly because of the BD+ and regional coding - they could care less about picture quality due to outdated codecs and pricier discs due to manufacturing costs.

    And the whole capacity thing is such an overplayed issue - most people just want the film in the best quality they can get - the extras can go on a seperate standard def DVD if necessary, it's probably cheaper to make an HD-DVD + DVD set than a single disk BD anyway due to the higher manufacturing costs!

    I'm livid that Sony has won out by buying off the studios (they paid half a billion to Warner to switch after all!) when the better format overall lost because it was BETTER FOR THE CONSUMER due to the lack of regional coding and enhanced interactivity.

    Guess I won't be buying any more Hi-Def movies once the HD-DVD releases stop.

    I'll just download them from X-Box live instead, or watch them on Sky.

    Sony won't be getting any of my money.
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  7. Wiggins

    Wiggins Member

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    Yikes! And I was literally days away from making an HD DVD player purchase after months and months of deliberation. Now I think I'll just not bother and stick with sd dvd's. Well done Sony, you've just pushed back mainstream acceptance of high-def dvd by at least another year! I certainly won't be forking out the obscene amount expected for a Blu-Ray player with its region lock.
  8. marty2005

    marty2005 Active Member

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    If I remember Betamax was 3hrs 15mins, vhs is 3hrs.

    Yeah typical Sony high prices.

    I also remember paying £9.99 for a blank Betmax tape.

    Mini Disk was meant to replace audio tapes not CD and had the advantage of inputing text although the disks were smaller and didn't sound as good as a CD due to compression. A few music Mini Disks came out.

    I don't know why Sony had to have their own memory cards. Probably a way to charge more and get that extra bit of money out of people. SD cards are so much better/cheaper because every mp3 player, camcorder, camera uses them and they are made by loads of manufacturers.
  9. m455954

    m455954 Member

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    Ah but VHS had long play - people didn't care about quality at the time due to the novelty of being able to record anything at all, so having 8hrs on a single VHS tape made all the difference.

    I agree Mini-disk was to replace tape, but CD-R/RW was already on the horizon and so much more well supported by the industry (standardised)
  10. simond83

    simond83 Member

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    If everything goes to plan, BD should be 200gb per side, per disc!
  11. Tejstar

    Tejstar Active Member

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    Same with me. It makes it easier that there is nothing pressing for me to buy right now.
  12. marty2005

    marty2005 Active Member

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    The BBC comedy "The Young Ones" knew that people recorded tv as they would put in subliminal frames so that people would rewind it back.

    I thought Betamax had long play as well. I still have all the Young Ones on Betamax tape in the attic.

    By the time the hd dvd war is won, we'll be getting blueray recorders like in Japan.

    When I had Betamax I used to rent out tapes then when vhs won the video shops stopped renting them and it was harder to get the blanks. This is what might happen to hd-dvd. You'll be stuck with a machine where you can't get the media. Maybe they'll do a trade in.
  13. Rich777

    Rich777 Member

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    Haven't Warner effectively turned their back on the DVD Forum, after all it is the DVD Forum that threw out what was to become BD and agreed on what should be the next optical disc format for the provision of HD movies. Are the DVD forum members angry ? Toshiba ? Universal ? The 1,000,000 + HD DVD owners that have bought a device to play movies, angry ? How does this impact on the present market ?
  14. DolbyT

    DolbyT Member

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    Our Betamax had long play... Back then, I would have preferred Sony's format to have won, it was much better. You guy's are right about Sony and their behaviour, and I think a lot of it stems from their Beta/VHS days, although I think they do shoot themselves in the foot like Microsoft etc by making buggy products that are replaced by new versions of existing products that are incompatible with the old version. And of course, being a media producer a well as hardware means DRM is top of the agenda for them...

    So I'll not be moving to SD though. Although HD does look stunning, I'll stick to going to the cinema and SD for the time being.

    Oh, and can someone who's bought HD and is now complaining that they've GOT to buy all new disks tell me why? If you've got a good piece of kit and disks for it, why buy all the media again? Ok, it means keeping another box in the house, but surely it's that much of a problem?
  15. chrissyman

    chrissyman Member

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    Yes if you have a hd dvd and a load of discs ,you don't have to junk them just because BD is winning apparently, it will still look just as good in a year or 2 years from now?
  16. Rob20

    Rob20 Member

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    I will feel sorry for all those who've invested in HD-DVD if it does dissapear. If I'd owned an HDTV screen larger than 26" then it's possible I would have bought an EP35 by now what with the 7 free discs for £270. At the very least I would have the X360 HD-DVD drive. However, in the long run it's surely in all our interests to have the one format. Better it goes now than when people have spent thousands on discs.

    With two formats there are too many reasons (for me) not to buy into either. Better to stick with dvd for now and wait to see how things pan out. If there had been one format from the start I'm sure I would have bought into it by now. Ok, my tv's too small, but it would probably have made sense to buy HD films with the knowledge that I'm likely to buy a new screen at some point this year. Saves having to buy them on dvd now, then re-buy on HD at later date. Owning an Onkyo 875, I would have at least been able to try out the new HD sound formats.

    Still, one format doesn't solve the problem of incomplete or vanilla discs. A positive of the HD-DVD format is that True HD Dolby Digital is mandatory on all discs. Who now would even consider a dvd without DD/DTS 5.1? Why should we accept HD discs without HD sound? Then there's the lack of extras. If they're available for dvd then they should be included on HD discs. After making the mistake of buying dvds lacking extras only to re-buy the 'Special' edition at a later date, I won't be making that mistake again. Especially when you factor in the premium price. I only replaced my vhs collection when I could find the dvd in a sale for £10 or so. I'm in no rush to go out and buy them all over again so soon, and so incomplete.
  17. ahin4114

    ahin4114 Member

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    Conversely Toshiba and the rest of the HD-DVD consortium could have integrated Sony's ideas into the HD-DVD spec', this is not all as one sided as you are making out.

    Features are things that the studios wanted, as Sony are also a major studio they understood this. Are you going to start complaining about HDCP over HDMI as well?

    Java is a fine Language to use, it's not an environment. There is a ready supply of developers who are very well versed in it available, and it has a proven track record. Can the same be said for HDi?

    1.1 Discs are now available, Resident Evil: Extinction and Sunshine to name 2. Not to mention that the PS3 (the most widely adopted Blu-Ray player on the market) has 1.1 support.

    It will come down, in much the same way DVD did. I remember paying more for DVD's when they came out than I am currently paying for BR discs.

    They're protecting their revenue stream, what did you expect? The outdated codecs affected a limited number of titles and is a thing of the past.

    Higher capacity means lower compression, not just now but in the future. Even if BR discs aren't using their full capacity right now, as the technology matures, and studios and their tools become more refined at working with HD material BD's extra capacity will give them the scope to improve our experience. Whilst HD-DVD was on a par with BD titles to date (better in some cases), it was not future proofed to the degree BD is. Purchasing the equipment to manufacture these discs is a long term investment, the technology needs to have long-term prospects to justify that.

    $500M, not according to Warner... The Paramount payoff from HD-DVD was entirely different of course??? Not to mention the fact the HD-DVD camp were also 'courting' Warner and Fox to get them to switch, you may be able to overlook these facts, but they're quite important.

    If you were concerned with quality, you'd be steering well clear of both of those options. However it seems you're more interested in flaming Sony for putting a nail in the coffin of your favourite in a two horse race than the better technology winning. I prefer to consider this Sony getting their own back for the superior BetaMax format getting slammed all those years ago.
  18. bradleysmith

    bradleysmith Member

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    Higher quality video and audio always benefits from having higher storage capacity. I hope that the higher capacity format wins i.e. blu-ray. PLus SOny deserve to win a format war for once ;)

    Looking at all this from a Sony vs Microsoft perspective I'm happy too. MS seem to be going down the compressed video and audio movies via the internet route. I much prefer having movies on an actual disc I can keep / sell and with the best possible picture and sound that my equipment can deliver.
  19. winstn60

    winstn60 Member

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    Brilliant comments from m455954 which I fully endorse and sums up the Sony situation nicely. Sony seem to be trying to re-capture past successes with the orginal tape Walkman and can't quite hit the mark IMO.
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  20. prodrigo

    prodrigo Member

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    Inane, uninformed opinion and rumour-mongering IMO. Whatever, we get HD movies, and this war couldn't end soon enough.

    As for those who bought an HD-DVD player when its future was in the balance... bad investment. In essence, you were buying into a company for a return... however the return has evaporated and you are left with a decent DVD upscaler and some HD movies. If that's the worst thing that ever happens to you, then you've lived a charmed life. Go get some popcorn, watch your HD movies and be happy.
  21. lumiere

    lumiere Member

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  22. ahin4114

    ahin4114 Member

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  23. Manmc

    Manmc Member

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    " If everything goes to plan, BD should be 200gb per side, per disc! "

    Its always next year with BD ! Or the year after , or the year after that ! Do you seriously think the studios are going to load those discs with 200gb at no extra cost to the consumer and will they work with the versions of players that people have now ??????

    I'm not going near BD until the spec and the players are in stone and hopefully downloading will be ready by then so I wont have to bother . If HDs still come out in Europe I'll continue to buy them and just upscale my Lord of the Rings Extended till I'm good and ready .

    BD is so anti-consumer I cannot believe people actually prefer it .Region Coding should be dropped immediately if they had any sense . It might attract those of us who just love good movies wherever they may come from .Its depressing.

    ~M~

    ~M~
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  24. ahin4114

    ahin4114 Member

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    You're right of course, the specification is evolving, but in some ways this is a good thing, I'd rather have an evolving technology than one which is becoming more obsolete as the days go by. Before anybody gets all high horse and takes that as a dig at HD-DVD, it's not, it's simply my opinion that it's good to see that there are plans for taking the technology that you've bought into and keeping it alive for the next 10 years, rather than thinking I'm going to be back at square 1 again when the next best thing comes along.

    Bearing in mind that we haven't even got complete ADSL1 penetration in the UK, and that even at double the speeds we have now you're not going to be streaming HD content at the quality you're getting off of HD-DVD/BR media, you may have a much longer wait for that download experience you mention.

    Anti-consumer in that it won't allow you to import discs as easily (DVD region encoding anybody), it won't allow you to make illegal copies as easily (shouldn't affect most of us should it).

    What us consumers want is good quality movies, lots of them, more than you can shake a very large stick at. In order to deliver that dream you need studios (who own that big barrell full of movies) to have faith enough in the medium used to deliver it to let the movies out the door. BR (despite it's flaws which are well enough documented elsewhere on this forum), has got that backing from the studios. Yes, it costs £2 more per disc, yes the players are more expensive (because the budget manufacturers were keeping well out of the game until there was a clear winner), but it is going to do what it was intended to, and that is bring us a shed load of HD movies.

    I agree that BR is more expensive than HD-DVD, which in turn is more expensive than DVD, but I re-iterate what I said in an earlier post. DVD's started life in the same way, and costs fell, they will again.

    Frankly if HD-DVD had come out on top, I'd have bought that instead, quietly, and without complaint.
  25. prodrigo

    prodrigo Member

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    Pah. I want a box with cover art on it! Do people not realise that just because you downloaded the movie it doesn't mean it has no physicality? It takes up space on a hard disk, and so you'll need at least a couple of terabytes to hold a half decent collection.... and guess what, that takes up space. And has a fan that makes a lot of noise. And costs a lot of money to buy. And uses a fair bit of power. And can fail at any time. And can be easily carted out of your house by a guy with swag written on his sack. Your 2TB media server might be insured in your simple home contents policy, but will they pay out for the hundreds you've spent on the data contained on that server? I suppose you'll also be wanting an offsite backup... ££££££'s not to mention a fair bit of technical know-how.

    By the way, HD streaming isn't the future, it's here now, and it's crap. 720p and lossy compressed audio. Highly unimpressive.

    (Sorry ahin4114 I don't mean this to be directed at you specifically, just mis-using your quote to make a point)

    Amen brother. I've waited for the moment I can start my collection, and the moment is ripe. I can start getting 70% of what I want now and be well assured the rest will shortly follow. Excitement!

    As for the deficiencies in the BD profile - I'm not so impatient for them to be sorted. My computer can do internet better than any HD-DVD/BD player, and PiP I'm willing to just wait for. Region coding I'm not convinced this will cause any problems - DVD has it, and it hasn't prevented me watching any foreign films. In fact, BD already has Oldboy, Seventh Seal, The Host and Pan's Labyrinth in terms of foreign film, and we've just got started.

    Finally, I can see multi-layered BD being particularly useful for data storage rather than for movies specifically. HD-DVD just doesn't cut the mustard in comparison, in terms of data storage needs.
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  26. mikeaitch

    mikeaitch Member

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    It seems to me that you can guess which side, red or blue, the poster is on within a sentence or two of starting their post.

    FWIW , the 'winning' of this hidef war by BD will, it seems to me, have long term and far reaching consequences for ALL of us. In the future, as new technologies emerge, each company or group of companies will seek to corner the market to make profits- they'll look at BD winning this war as proof it can be done. We as consumers will therefore be faced with agonising decisions on which to go for or to do without either, as most have done.

    A single format will NOT be the same as DVD, which was the BEST of BOTH competing formats at the time. Not the 'better' of the two, or the one with the most studio support. The desire to own the licence for the defacto standard will outweigh the company's fear of backing the wrong format, and each will be convinced that theirs is going to win.

    Regional coding is about control. Control of markets and prices. Talk of thwarting piracy is a red herring- the security is always overcome by the hacking community. Are BD supporters really saying they prefer it? It allows the perpetuation of Rip Off Britain...

    Trying to decide what to buy now is making my head spin. It's going to be more expensive than if HD-DVD had won, that's for sure.

    I'm sticking to my HTPC, format neutral. But BD winning seems to make things more complicated than if the other side won through- Now I've got to learn all about version 1.this and that, Java etc etc if I want a standalone, to avoid picking the right side but the wrong player...
  27. prodrigo

    prodrigo Member

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    No side here, I just wanted one to become the de facto standard, which hasn't happened yet, but will soon enough I expect. I don't even understand why anyone would take sides, unless they had considerable financial stakes in either Tosh or Sony.

    You are right that this format war is about greed, but what war isn't? Neither side has come out smelling of roses, and in the end it's the early adopters who get burnt the most. Still, it is fun playing with all the new technology and in my opinion no one can really complain they haven't had value for money.

    As for "far reaching consequences for all of us", really, don't you think you are being rather melodramatic? Your way of life isn't being threatened, this is about a plastic disc with a movie on it.

    By the way, do you understand what neutral means? You're obviously not in that category, and appear a little BD-paranoid. Look up Switzerland in Wikipedia. Besides, I guess (hope) the phrase format-neutral will soon become largely irrelevant.

    As an aside, Rip Off Britain is just a glib phrase, meaningless and without foundation in truth. I can say with certainty the state of the local economy has nothing to do with Region Coding. If you think it's a rip off here in GB, try crossing the channel.

    I see movies as an art-form rather than merely a commodity and I'm happy for them to control their rights as the artist especially in terms of distribution. There's jobs at stake here - just because you want to see a movie/TV series before it's released in the UK by buying the disc from the US it doesn't mean that whim should be pandered to. That's what this is really about - don't talk nonsense about "international markets", it's all a smokescreen.

    No-one has cracked BD+ yet, and hopefully it won't happen. Piracy is WRONG and bad for the industry. You have no right to reproduce the movie just as much as you have no right to reproduce the Vincent van Gogh print you bought in Amsterdam. If you want to acquire that right, then perhaps you could come to an arrangement with the artist or owner. I believe the Kaleidescape people have such an arrangement, so I'm sure it isn't impossible, nor cheap.
  28. Manmc

    Manmc Member

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    Interesting that some people believe absolutely every BDA announcement that comes out . Last year at CES , Fox stole the thunder by announcing quite a few blockbusters which either haven't turned up yet or at all , but at least they got the publicity at the time : We have more studios and more releases etc etc

    It really is a leap of faith to assume that they will perfect 200gb discs , they will load them with extra features , highest quality multiple versions of the film , soundtracks ( which were also promised with SD in the early days ) and that they will not charge a dime extra :confused:

    Not everyone who dislikes Region Coding wants to make copies and sell em down the market . 'Market control' is anti competitive and not legally enforcable hasn't been shown in the case of Region Coding to achieve anything other than ****** off the studios' best customers. Its interesting that the movie 'Oldboy' was mentioned as I specifically purchased the R3 dvd because the R1 +R2 versions were cut :( Hollywood is not the only place where movies are made .

    The Dvd Audio format delivers 2.0 or 5.1 PCM sound at 24/96 quality . Sony did not want to run the risk of someone else winning the 'royalties' war so they launched Sacd thereby diluting and confusing the market with the result that Mp3 won that war .

    If BD doesnt rid itself of Region Coding and/or BD+ and become a truly global format ( like Cd ) it could end up as a Laserdisc-type niche product while the pirates sell their upconvertable Sd discs and laugh all the way to the bank.

    The real war against Sd is only beginning .

    ~M~

    P.S. I'm off to watch some of my Hitchcock boxset to pass the time ;)
  29. prodrigo

    prodrigo Member

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    When will people realise that this is not about how cheap stuff is?

    If you want to buy an region 3 machine to play region 3 discs, nobody's stopping you. The artists and distributors are well within their rights to make it as expensive and inconvenient as they possibly can for you.

    Your source? I know a fair few people, and I've never heard it mentioned down the pub, or anywhere else for that matter (except anonymously in forums). Must be a lot of people out there looking for something to get upset about.

    Your source? My BD of Oldboy is all regions. I've seen the Korean version and my version (bought off the shelf in the UK) is not discernibly different. I'd be interested to learn what exactly has been 'cut'. If it has indeed been censored, I apologise for doubting you.

    We're serious movie lovers with money to spend, talking movies. I don't really care much for nor do I want to talk about teenagers downloading the latest Spice Girls track from Kazaar. I still buy CD's, and as far as I'm aware far more CD's are sold than MP3's. I'm sorry that's more of an educated guess rather than something I have any sources for. Maybe you can tell me more - this "war" you mention, whom was fighting whom?

    I disagree with you entirely. I can't bring myself to spend time countering that kind of (?non-)logic. Perhaps you could elaborate some more.

    How melodramatic! :)
  30. prodrigo

    prodrigo Member

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    I was a little concerned by your statement there so did a bit of digging around for ... well it must have been all of 2 minutes... which you should probably do yourself next time. Found this;

    http://www.therewindforums.co.uk/forums/viewtopic.php?t=21920

    The pertinent quote is:

    It'll be that first sentence you're interested in. Cheers.
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