General Question

2davidc8's avatar

Is Blu-ray better than DVD?

Asked by 2davidc8 (4171 points ) December 30th, 2013

I see that the last time this question was asked here was back in 2007, so maybe it’s time for a revisit. It seems that the 2 formats seem to be co-existing today, with no clear winner (as there was in VHS vs. Betamax war years ago). Is this correct?
What are pros and cons of each format?

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15 Answers

Pachy's avatar

I guess the biggest advantage to Blu-ray is that the disk holds far more data, so not only is the resolution better, there’s more space for more featurettes. Of course you pay quite a bit extra for that. I own a large screen, hi-def TV and frankly don’t see all that much difference in quality between the two.

Others will disagree, but as much as I love movies, I don’t see the point in paying the extra money.

Caveat: I do own several Blu-Rays of movies I especially love, some of them in 3D because my TV has that feature.

Smitha's avatar

Blu-Ray is definitely better than the best DVD. Blu-Rays have more special features than DVDs. Most new films are look amazing on Blu-ray and totally justify the extra cash. I’m a big Blu-ray fan!

dabbler's avatar

Regular DVD is good enough for me, but a buddy of mine is a Blu-Ray fan and has demonstrated several movies that are noticeably more detailed in the Blu-Ray version.
More resolution is the big difference, but not all movies will be produced in a way that will take advantage of that.

elbanditoroso's avatar

Better for what? The images are better, no doubt. But to take full advantage of Blu-Ray, you need to invest in a different DVD player (one that knows Blu-Ray) and to get really full effect, also a higher-density TV.

To me, the barely perceptible difference in picture quality doesn’t outweigh the monetary investment.

Besides, DVD is a dying technology – it’s going to go the same way as CDs, and be replaced by streaming.

Bottom line – not worth it.

gailcalled's avatar

When I recently bought a new TV for the bedroom, I ponied up for the Blu-Ray player. Given the cost of the TV, I hardly noticed the extra money. I get all my discs from the library for free. I can play both discs on the Blu-Ray so I have more choices.

My eye is not discerning enough to register any difference in quality. I enjoy many of.the extra features.

Having been a partial shut-in for the past three months due to a temporary medical issue, I have loved the Blu-Ray. It has earned its keep a hundredfold.

flip86's avatar

I wouldn’t know. I still use one of those tube televisions with a Netflix subscription and a Roku. DVD’s are going the way of the CD. More and more people are opting out of physical media.

Blu-Ray movies have started showing up in bargain bins. That is never a good sign for any technology.

Darth_Algar's avatar

There’s a huge upscale in quality between Blu-Ray and DVD. And there’s no clear winner between Blu-Ray and DVD because the two formats are not, and never have been at war. The format war was between Blu-Ray and HD-DVD. Blu-Ray won.

@flip86 I disagree. Yes, more and more people are opting for digital media, but it’s going to be a very long time before any physical format disappears. For one thing our internet infrastructure just isn’t all that great, in the United States at least. Tens of millions of Americans still do not have internet access at home, and of those that do tens of millions still do not have access to broadband internet. For those folks steaming media or downloading large amounts of data just isn’t feasible. Then there’s the issue of internet providers now placing data caps on their users. That’s going to hinder the transition to all digital media. Plus humans are a tactile species. We like to hold and touch things. No matter what there’s always going to be people who want a physical item rather than intangible data.

Also, seeing things in the bargain bin means nothing. CDs, DVDs, Blu-Rays, cassettes, VHS, vinyl, books, video games, etc etc etc…I’ve always seen things in the bargain bins. For that matter I’ve seen foods and hygiene items in the bargain bin as well, but I doubt that toothpaste or the Hershey bar are going anywhere.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

Blu-Ray won because the playstation included it. This is much like why VHS beat out betamax. Betamax was better but the porn industry adopted vhs. They are already old school now anyway.

josie's avatar

Depends on how big your TV is
If you have a TV less than about 32 inches, you may not see the difference.
But over 40 inches, you can really see the difference.

Lightlyseared's avatar

One feature of Blu-ray that no one has mentioned is the improved audio quality although you need the equipment to get the most out of it. Having said that its probably the last physical media you’ll be able to buy movies on. Digital downloads and streaming are the future.

downtide's avatar

If you have a big-screen HD TV, Blu-ray is better. If you have a regular TV the only difference you’ll notice is the extra features they fit on the disk. Also, Blu-rays will play on a PS3/PS4 which might be useful to some.

filmfann's avatar

@elbanditoroso is sadly correct, and those of us with THOUSANDS of movies on DVD are wondering why we spent that money.
A DVD has wonderful picture and sound, but the Blu-Ray’s have slightly better picture (which you will only notice if you have a big screen), and far superior sound (which only matters if you have a good sound system).

2davidc8's avatar

Thank you all for your replies. Now that some of you have mentioned streaming, what will be the quality of the streaming compared with Blu-ray, assuming you have a big-screen HDTV and appropriate audio equipment to match?

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

It’s good but “compressed” 720. The best practical picture available now is BluRay. I use the Roku set top box and it streams very good quality HD. You do need the broadband connection to support it though. Streaming will get better and better.

Then there is UHDTV: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/4K_resolution
You’re not going to be able to watch commercial movies in this yet though.

Darth_Algar's avatar

Also the quality of streaming, as with most things internet related, is dependent upon many factors, several of which will be beyond your control.

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