Blu-ray first thoughts

It’s been a couple of weeks now since I got my Blu-ray home theatre system up and running. I must admit, Avatar is a “must-have” for anyone with Blu-ray. The plot itself maybe pretty dire but visually it is stunning and makes my head tingle! 🙂

However, there do seem to be a couple of down-sides with Blu-ray. For a start, it seems incredibly slow. You put a disc in and regularly have to wait minutes before you get the menu up or the film starts (then you have to put up with the missus making sarky comments about Blu-ray supposedly being better than DVD! 😉 ). This is even worse on discs that contain previews before the menu comes up. You normally experience various “loading” screens, and “starting network” etc. which is just plain annoying. At one point I was shouting at the screen “Just play me the f**king movie!”.

One of the features of Blu-ray is supposed to be the interactive content with “BD-Live”, but all the discs I have tried either say “this feature has not been implemented” even though there’s a menu option, or just get a bit of blurb saying “Please visit our web site at www.xyz.com”. This seems like a real wasted opportunity.

Something else I have found annoying is that not all discs seem to “remember” where you were if you stop playback and shut down the system. In fact the only disc I have seen this work is on Avatar, on other discs like Monsters Inc. or Gladiator, if you shut down (to go to bed for instance) and want to pick up where you left off the next day, you have to go through all the “loading” crap again. I swear it took me 5 minutes to carry on watching Gladiator after taking an overnight break just because the disc is so damn slow and then you have to get through all the menus again. Grrrrr!

It makes me wonder whether HD-DVD suffered all these delays.

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