DVD Forum Seminar 2006, HD DVD Highlights

July 6, 2006

HD DVDHD DVD was obviously a notable topic at yesterdays ‘2006 DVD forum seminar’ in Tokyo, as the meeting shed a little more light on Toshiba’s planned implementation of the Image Constraint Token (ICT).

It would appear as if our legacy component video outputs are HD safe until 2010, thereafter all component video outputs from HD DVD players will be limited to 480i. (rough translation there, likely allows for 480p as well) After 2010 all HD signals from HD DVD players will be HDMI/DVI only. However in 2013 it appears as if all HD DVD (player) signal transmission will be handled in the digital realm.

So there you have it folks, at least according to Toshiba and The DVD forum (more accurately at the movie studios behest) you have four years to ‘go-digital’ before the component outputs on your HD DVD players stop transmitting HD and six years before the use of an HDCP enabled digital display is required for all playback.

Another interesting tidbit I gleaned from the Watch Impress article was Toshiba’s apparent interest in the fact that 71% of Warner Bothers titles are under 120 minutes long and would easily fit on single layer 15GB HD DVD discs with VC-1.

No doubt many who are reluctant to embrace the coming analog cut-off date of February 17, 2009, will also bemoan both Sony’s and Toshiba’s apparent willingness to enforce these digital restrictions on us. But neither of these companies are the impetus for this restriction, Hollywood is solely to blame on the pre-recorded end and Congress for the analog off-air shut off.

I’ve read enough droning from so-called technophiles about all of this to last me a lifetime, the CE companies aren’t to blame here they are simply playing by the rules imposed on them by the real rule-makers, namely Hollywood and the federal government. Notice I said “from so-called technophiles” above? Oddly enough the majority of these complaints are coming from those who are in-theory already insulated from these restrictions.

Make no mistake this is very much out of both Sony and Toshiba’s hands. Also before anyone even specualtes, yes Blu-ray partners will undoubtedly activate similar (or possibly even stricter) HDCP restrictions on Blu-ray players

I for one won’t miss off-air analog television transmission one bit, to be honest I can’t even remember the last time I used it. What about the HDCP restrictions on pre-recorded content you ask? Well I want to be able to own and view pre-recorded high definition movies at my leisure, if this is what I have to abide by to do so, then so be it.

Posted by Bryan Greenway | | Filed Under HD-DVD