Killing BluRay, new Oppo BR 83

OK, I have been vocal on these forums with my opinion that BluRay is a short term media, and will not become the dominant media format. My reason:

1) There is not a mind blowing difference in BluRay quality
over the existing domintant format of DVD. That's not to say BluRay is not better, but it's not the difference between VHS and DVD, where you couldn't believe what you were seeing. Does it look and sound better, yes. Does it change your life, no. Especially with the quality of the upconverting DVD players available.

2) Given my first point, I don't think there is a big call to replace any purchased DVD's with BluRay. Any videophile who had a bunch of VHS tapes did that immeadiately with DVD, but why do it again? Basically the same disk, great sound, and small size, with excellent picture. I don't think that investment is going to be made again, and that means the market for BluRay discs is MUCH smaller for classic movies.

3) The advenet of internet based movie downloads is already available in HD. Granted, it's only 720 and no HD soundtracks, but does anyone believe that is not coming, and quickly. I love using my AppleTV to rent movies, never leave the house, and don't have to return. Honestly, I have bought a bunch of movies that way, since I have such a big network storage capacity. I think this will be the dominant AV format going forward, both movies and music. More high res video and music available faster. I believe that the rise in the market for outboard DAC's will become even greater, and they will have he ability to decode the new higher res music, and possible video soundtracks in surround. Output to analog preamps for Audiophile grade sound will become the norm for audiophiles, or hybrid HT/2 channel systems, as is becoming the norm.

I whole-heartedly believe this since recieving my new Oppo BluRay player. It is a great player, and it's the second BluRay I have had in my system so it just has re-inforced my previous hypothosis regarding the future of BluRay. Don't get me wrong, the player is STELLAR in every way. Considering the price, it's almost criminal especially on SACD and DVD-Audio (which I have not had any of the problems that the first firmware owners had). I have not gotten to use it as a CD transport yet, I am waiting on one of Paul G's (TubeAudioDesign) new DACs and the redbook CD sound on it's own was just OK.

That said, after watching several movies in both BluRay and DVD on the same player, the difference is just not that huge. It is better, but not enough to make me run out and buy any of those movies again on BluRay. It's the difference, to me, between the Magnepan 3.6 and 20.1. It's definitely better, but they are both excellent.

OK, those are my thoughts, FWIW.

I came to these conclusion
I should be receiving my Oppo BDP 83 next Thursday. Cost was $499.
I am planning on using it for mostly viewing rented Blu Ray movies. I did not buy very many movies on reg DVD either.

Got to admit, I am kinda of curious how the Oppo compares to my Denon 5910.
I'll wait until my Combination DVD/LaserDisc player dies before getting a new player. Hey anyone think they will make a Combi Laserdisc/DVD/Bluray player..LOL
Interesting points and reasonable conclusions. However, my crystal ball is a little foggier so maybe my predictions are a bit different.

I agree with your first point that Blu-Ray is not hugely better, but it is demonstrably better. It is only the price premium that is holding it back as studios milk it for all they can. When the prices drop, why purchase regular DVD over Blu-Ray? You'll take the better one if the price differential is not too great. I think this will happen eventually.

Also, there are larger forces at work here. Equipment manufacturers and retailers have to keep things going forward or their market stagnates. Stores are pushing Blu-Ray players, not regular DVD players. A regular DVD player will soon become as rare as a stand alone CD player in the mass market stores. Also, higher-end computers are adding Blu-Ray drives and recorders. These things will create a demand for the discs which will increase as prices drop.

I think your second point is true but it is past oriented; it only applies to people replacing collections. What about going forward...people who are buying a title for the first time? Blu-Ray will focus on new titles, not remastered classics, at least in the beginning. And for the people replacing things, never underestimate the desire of people to get the latest and greatest. It keeps the computer industry in business.

I think your third point about downloads is the future. But we're a long way from having the bandwidth capability to deliver in any appreciable numbers. Internet providers are even now throttling high bandwidth users with higher prices and slower downlaod speeds. When we do get more bandwidth that is readily available, we'll probably be past Blu-Ray into the next thing anyway (i.e. downloads).
I had a Denon 5910, which I had modded, and the video on the Oppo is in another catagory, and although the Oppo sounds excellent, the Denon (going from memory here) was in another league for audio, even un-modded. But come on, the Denon weighs the same as a baby elephant. Great player, the Denon 5910.
It isn't surprising considering your screen size v.s your distance to your display.

My impression was very similar to yours while shopping for new display last year. While comparing Pioneer 1080p plasma (50" size) to its 720p counterpart from the distance of 12 feet (my viewing distance) I had very difficult time distinguishing one over the other. That's why I chose less expensive 720p set and invested the difference in better quality 1080p front projection setup (80" electric screen and 10' viewing distance) which isn't that forgiving in regards to differences between 720p and 1080p material.

In closing argument, I would say - size does matter. If your display is smaller then 50" and your viewing distance greater then 9', save yourself some money and delusions. If you really want to see HD at its best, invest in front projection and quality 1080p source (satellite and Blueray)