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Author Topic: UMD Movies - Here to stay or just a faze?  (Read 2174 times)
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corruptrelic
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« on: December 29, 2005, 12:00:33 PM »

What do you guys think, are UMD's here to stay?
Way back in the days I used to have a cd-i (the console that coudn't) that also tried doing movies on their system, but ultimately the system failed and phillips/magnavox gave up on consoles.
Of course I doubt the same case will be with the PSP, but with the upcoming Bluray and HD-DVD, fitting movies on tiny 1.8gb discs is going to be tough with the next-gen DVD format right around the corner.
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« Reply #1 on: December 29, 2005, 12:31:55 PM »

I don't know who is buying em, but Best Buy has two shelves full of the things.  Sony is trying, but I personally can't justify the price.  If they were 10 bucks a pop they'd fly off the shelf faster than you could blink.  For 20, there is just no way. (for me at least)
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« Reply #2 on: December 29, 2005, 12:37:52 PM »

With cheap portable DVD players on the market, and with DVDs being cheaper, I don't see UMD movies making it. Small niche maybe.
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« Reply #3 on: December 29, 2005, 01:31:02 PM »

There are a ton of them at Wal-Mart and Best Buy. I have never bought them ($20 is way too expensive for something that has less on it than a DVD) but they must be selling pretty well, or the stores would not give up shelf space for them.
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« Reply #4 on: December 29, 2005, 02:55:30 PM »

Quote from: "Knightshade Dragon"
I don't know who is buying em, but Best Buy has two shelves full of the things.  Sony is trying, but I personally can't justify the price.  If they were 10 bucks a pop they'd fly off the shelf faster than you could blink.  For 20, there is just no way. (for me at least)


Agreed. There is no reason, none, why these things should cost as much as they do, let alone more than the DVD version.
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The_Man
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« Reply #5 on: December 29, 2005, 02:55:57 PM »

Same here.  I've never bought one, but right now DeepDiscountDVD.com is running a buy one get one free sale on all they have.  I put Joe Dirt and Richard Pryor Live On the Sunset Strip in my cart and the total came to 14.24 for both with free shipping and no tax.  Not too shabby to get two for 7 bucks each.  

Generally, my feeling is why pay $20 for a movie on my PSP when I can pay the same or sometimes less for a dvd that I can play on any player in my house and everyone can watch?
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« Reply #6 on: December 29, 2005, 02:57:57 PM »

I've never bought one but I sort of like the idea behind them and sort of don't.  It's nice to have a portable movie format but it's sad that there's no way to watch it on anything other than a PSP.  The price is prohibitive especially when you can basically buy the DVD for the same price and convert it to a format that can play on your PSP.
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jblank
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« Reply #7 on: December 29, 2005, 03:05:46 PM »

Quote from: "Hetz"
There are a ton of them at Wal-Mart and Best Buy. I have never bought them ($20 is way too expensive for something that has less on it than a DVD) but they must be selling pretty well, or the stores would not give up shelf space for them.


Sure they would, Sony is paying for that space. :wink:
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adamsappel
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« Reply #8 on: December 29, 2005, 03:11:06 PM »

I've actually become a UMD convert. It seems I have more time to watch a movie when I'm away from the tv. I'm not a DVD collector, and it's hard to make time to watch the movie itself, much less the bonus content. UMDs seem to have better trade-in value right now as well. My price point is around $15, though I'll go $20 if it's a special movie. Charging $30 for less content is laughable. At $12, I'd buy pretty much anything. I cut a "window" in my Playgear case (the rubber bumper, not the plastic) and I can safely let my daughter use the PSP. It's great to have Toy Story, The Incredibles and Spongebob Squarepants available anytime.



It's funny how PSP fanboys always tout the media aspects of the system, but most hardcore gamers look down on actually purchasing UMD movies.
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« Reply #9 on: December 29, 2005, 03:44:16 PM »

That's one seriously cute daughter!
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Dafones
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« Reply #10 on: December 29, 2005, 03:48:18 PM »

Quote from: "warning"
The price is prohibitive especially when you can basically buy the DVD for the same price and convert it to a format that can play on your PSP.


Is this easy? I assume you somehow convert the DVD movie into a readable file that you put onto a media stick. God, Sony should have pushed this angle. I realize that they wouldn't be making the cash off of the UMD movie sales, but if they had packaged the PSP with a user-friendly DVD movie converter, I think it would have been a better selling point. They're not winning people over with the UMDs. Any drawbacks to converting the DVDs?
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adamsappel
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« Reply #11 on: December 29, 2005, 03:51:18 PM »

Quote from: "warning"
That's one seriously cute daughter!


Thanks! I have to confess, a couple of moments after I took the picture, she did say, "I want to watch it on the big tv!"
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« Reply #12 on: December 29, 2005, 05:24:13 PM »

Quote from: "Dafones"
Quote from: "warning"
The price is prohibitive especially when you can basically buy the DVD for the same price and convert it to a format that can play on your PSP.


Is this easy? I assume you somehow convert the DVD movie into a readable file that you put onto a media stick. God, Sony should have pushed this angle. I realize that they wouldn't be making the cash off of the UMD movie sales, but if they had packaged the PSP with a user-friendly DVD movie converter, I think it would have been a better selling point. They're not winning people over with the UMDs.

It's sorta easy.  Here's a link with a step-by-step tutorial: linky.

It takes a bit to get the programs set up but once you do the process is basically automated.  I can rip the DVD (which by the way is technically illegal for what it's worth) in about 15 minutes and I set PSP Video 9 up to convert at night while I'm sleeping.  It can even queue up a list of files to convert and do them one by one.  In the morning I transfer the file(s) and I'm good to go.

I bought the Serenity DVD last night and this morning I watched it on my PSP while I was supposed to be working.   biggrin

Quote
Any drawbacks to converting the DVDs?

Not much.  I have a 1 gig memory stick so I can convert it at a pretty high bitrate which can make a big video file and the quality is good.  Not as sharp as a DVD (or a UMD for that matter) but it's pretty close and I can watch the DVD at home as well instead of being stuck with a bizarro-proprietary UMD movie.
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Nth Power
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« Reply #13 on: December 29, 2005, 06:07:49 PM »

I will only buy a UMD if it's a movie I really want and the price is less than $15.
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Jimmy the Fish
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« Reply #14 on: December 29, 2005, 06:23:55 PM »

I bought a bunch of movies on UMD that I didn't mind having as a good showcase of the "coolness" factor of the PSP. Honestly though, I've barely even watched them. I think definitely UMD movies are more of an interesting novelty than anything practical or useful.
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Farscry
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« Reply #15 on: December 29, 2005, 06:25:12 PM »

Quote from: "The_Man"
Generally, my feeling is why pay $20 for a movie on my PSP when I can pay the same or sometimes less for a dvd that I can play on any player in my house and everyone can watch?


This is the biggest reason why I don't believe the UMD format will be as successful as it could be (and may even ultimately fail).  Especially the part I put in italics.

Not only that, but as others pointed out, there are more and more portable devices that are DVD-compatible the more time goes by.

Unless Sony gets more companies to utilize the UMD format for additional portable devices, the format will not be a long-term success.

You know what devices would be perfect to convert to use UMD?  Cell phones.  We're already starting to see convergence hit on cell phones, and those discs are small enough that you could use one on a larger cell (N-Gage size, perhaps?), or perhaps in a modified Blackberry wireless pda/cell unit.  That'd be a gold mine right there; most of the people I know who have Blackberries (they're mostly the management and higher-ups in the very large company I work for) have high enough incomes and like the latest and greatest "bright shiny things".  They would leap all over the UMD format if that were used in their wireless devices.

Either that, or someone else (or maybe Sony) will develop a solid-state memory device intended for use for the same thing that will be compatible across the board, like the USB memory sticks that are all the rage right now.
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Jimmy the Fish
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« Reply #16 on: December 29, 2005, 08:30:52 PM »

http://www.deepdiscountdvd.com/promotion/buyOneGetOneFree_form.cfm

Deep Discount DVDs is running a 'buy 2 get 1 free' sale on UMD movies.

For anyone that still cares.   smile
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farley2k
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« Reply #17 on: December 29, 2005, 08:44:36 PM »

I am pretty much in the "won't last" camp.  

I just don't see the math working unless a lot of other devices come out which use them.  When you consider how many PSPs sell, and the look at how many of those people actually buy UMD movies...I just can't imagine it makes a lot of sense for most movies.
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« Reply #18 on: December 29, 2005, 08:50:04 PM »

I think it's a great and I love my umd's. I go to the gym put in a good movie and watch it on my psp while on the treadmill.

Ascendent
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« Reply #19 on: December 29, 2005, 09:23:40 PM »

Quote from: "Ascendent"
I think it's a great and I love my umd's. I go to the gym put in a good movie and watch it on my psp while on the treadmill.

Ascendent



They are great for some things but I think for most people it just isn't worth it.

A non-gamer could by a portable DVD player and do the same thing you do.  Judging from some of the sales I saw over Christmas they can actually do it cheaper than buying a PSP.
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« Reply #20 on: December 29, 2005, 11:23:35 PM »

I am surprised the PS3 won't include a UMD player.

I have to give Sony a ton of credit, though.  There is only one thing that can play the movies and yet they convinced studios to step up and release movies for it.  I am still shocked by the sheer volume of UMD movies I see at Best Buy.  Obviously a lot of PSP owners are buying them, and in volume as well.  I didn't think they'd ever take off like they apparently have.

I'd buy The Big Lebowski and Army of Darkness on UMD but that's about it.
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Jumangi
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« Reply #21 on: December 30, 2005, 12:48:32 AM »

Quote from: "corruptrelic"

Of course I doubt the same case will be with the PSP, but with the upcoming Bluray and HD-DVD, fitting movies on tiny 1.8gb discs is going to be tough with the next-gen DVD format right around the corner.


HD DVD/Blue-Ray stuff is irrelevent for the PSP. The movies for it are made to look good on its screen which is a set resolution that isn't going to change.
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Farscry
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« Reply #22 on: December 30, 2005, 02:38:53 PM »

Quote from: "Jumangi"
Quote from: "corruptrelic"

Of course I doubt the same case will be with the PSP, but with the upcoming Bluray and HD-DVD, fitting movies on tiny 1.8gb discs is going to be tough with the next-gen DVD format right around the corner.


HD DVD/Blue-Ray stuff is irrelevent for the PSP. The movies for it are made to look good on its screen which is a set resolution that isn't going to change.


I expect the same will be true of portable dvd players and the like; they will stay on the dvd format since the smaller screens don't need higher resolution, while the new hd-dvd/blu-ray formats are geared for large televisions and computer monitors.
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mytocles
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« Reply #23 on: December 30, 2005, 04:32:07 PM »

Thanks The_Man and Jimmy (you Fish!) for the Deep Discount info.  That is the only reason I will pick up two UMD movies, since I agree on the comments about the UMD price point.  I would just like to have a disc or two available for car trips, and I found two that were each $14.27 - so about $7 apiece - that is definitely worth it.

I think UMD's will last - especially if Sony figures out the price issue, if they get a better, more consumer-inclusive selection of movies - and maybe if they broaden their appeal in other ways, like producing a small, cheap handheld for playing them.  That's all... :lol:

I read Warning's instructions... and, for me - paying 7 bucks is easier than that, for now anyway! Since I have such an old laptop, I never download big things anyway, so I'd have to start from scratch in the learning process - and use someone else's computer.  :?
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« Reply #24 on: December 30, 2005, 04:37:24 PM »

FYI Gamestop has a buy one get one free on new (not used) Sony and MGM UMDs right now. They should be able to give you a printed list of applicable titles.
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mytocles
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« Reply #25 on: December 30, 2005, 08:55:47 PM »

Hey, Misguided,

Is this in-store only? I don't have one near me and couldn't find it anywhere online... which is funny since I get their email notifications, no mention there either, unless I missed it (who me?).  :?
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« Reply #26 on: December 30, 2005, 10:54:40 PM »

OUT!
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« Reply #27 on: December 30, 2005, 11:08:28 PM »

The first season of Spongebob Squarepants UMD is $12.99 at Target.
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« Reply #28 on: December 31, 2005, 04:49:28 AM »

Quote from: "mytocles"
Hey, Misguided,

Is this in-store only? I don't have one near me and couldn't find it anywhere online... which is funny since I get their email notifications, no mention there either, unless I missed it (who me?).  :?


I honestly don't know, sorry frown
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corruptrelic
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« Reply #29 on: December 31, 2005, 09:49:26 AM »

Quote
HD DVD/Blue-Ray stuff is irrelevent for the PSP.
Actually it is relevant, at least in terms of the sizes of the discs. On one hand you have the UMD's holding a mere 1.8gb of data, and you have the Bluray's holding a good 25-50gb of data.
Why do you think umd's don't have all the extras of dvds, or why games like smackdown vs raw 2006 had to use music tunes instead of commentary?
Even if the UMD's are lucky enough to have a scene selection - they don't have the picture previews like most dvd's do, all due to a lack of space.
When bluray becomes the norm (I'm guessing they'll beat out rival HD-DVD) and we eventually start to see portable bluray players, it's going to be extremely hard to justify buying a tiny UMD when you can buy a huge bluray disc with high defintion content, tons of extras, and who knows what else with all that space they have going on them.
To say it's not relevant to the future of UMD's, really doesn't hold.

Personally I have about 7 UMD's (both resident evils, sin city, and a few others) which I've watched at work.
I'd like to see the UMD format live on but I agree with most of the comments that it probably won't last.
Hell guess how much they were charging for Stealth at Gamestop? $39.99! Come on now.. you can get a game for that price. To be fair though I saw Stealth at Circuit City for $19.99.
It'd be great to see Sony drop the prices of UMD's to about $9.99 each, but Sony is all about the money. How long have the official sony 8mb memory cards been selling at $24.99 for? Even after nearly 6 years? I can't believe they're still going at $25 each after all this time.

My real only concern is how future-proof the PSP and UMDs are. Hate buying games/movies/etc when you don't know for sure if they're going to be aroud in the future and be backwards compatible. (Xbox being a good example - really hard to put down 50 bucks when the 360 probably won't even play it)
Will the PSP 2 use a "mini bluray drive" disc type of format? Really early in the game to speculate, but being a collector if I put some decent investment into the PSP and it's UMDS, I just want to know it's here to stay.
I'm sure the people who got systems like the 3do and cd-i's (especially the movies) were asking themselves the same question, but then again they weren't sony with that kind of financial backing.

Also there seems to be some kind of 10% discount on UMD's at Best Buy. The $14.99 movies are ringing up as $13.49 for anyone interested. Probably today (saturday) is the last day though as the new ads come out sunday.
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« Reply #30 on: December 31, 2005, 06:30:11 PM »

If you're letting the fantasy of a portable Blu-Ray player influence your current media buying, you're on a far different schedule than the rest of society. I'm sure one day we'll be able to plug a device directly into a port we install in our skulls, but I'm not letting that stop me from buying Family Guy on UMD. The fact that launch UMD movies had few extras and crappy menus was more due to studio laziness than disk size. Many new movies have commentary and other DVD extras. In all likelyhood, Sony will figure out a way to fit more data on the same-sized UMD disk, as they did with high-capacity Minidisks.
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corruptrelic
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« Reply #31 on: January 01, 2006, 10:49:28 AM »

A portable blu-ray dvd player is inevitable in the near future. Just as dvds became the norm and replaced vhs, blu-ray will begin replacing traditional dvds. It's just a matter of cost and just as it took dvds a bit to become more consumer friendly in price, the same will be with the next generation of dvds.
A port in our skull? If you're serious, hey it may happen.. but not in our lifetime.
As the next generation of dvd takes over movie studios aren't going to want to keep releasing their movies on "old dvds" when they can pack so much extra into bluray (and to be fair, hd-dvd though I doubt they'll come out on top), yeah they'll probably support dvd for a few years to come just as they kept supporting vhs until the vast majority fo us had access to dvd.

Don't pretend to speak on behalf of the rest of society, you don't even seem to realize that blu-ray and hd-dvd are literally right around the corner. Next year we'll see our winner and the following year it'll begin to take it's foothold in the mainstream market. It's only a matter of time until traditional dvds are no longer produced.
It's not a fantasy, it's reality.
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« Reply #32 on: January 02, 2006, 01:08:24 AM »

Can somebody tell me if UMD's have a chapter select or the ability to jump to a certain scene like normal DVD's?  I thought the earlier ones could not but maybe they fixed this?  Thanks!
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« Reply #33 on: January 02, 2006, 07:44:07 AM »

Portable porn is the answer. UMD porns are here to stay.smile
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« Reply #34 on: January 02, 2006, 08:50:05 PM »

stiffler, yes, early UMDs had very little in the way of even the most basic functionality like scene selection. I blame studio laziness; why put out even a modest effort until you see if the medium will take hold? Much like the best the early DVDs could offer was "Interactive Menus." Newer titles have neat menus, scene search, separate trailers (some you had to watch, unskippable), commentary tracks, etc.
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