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Re: [dvd-discuss] DVD Descrambling Code Not a Trade Secret

On 27 Jan 2004 at 13:37, Steve Stearns wrote:

Date sent:      	Tue, 27 Jan 2004 13:37:29 -0600
From:           	Steve Stearns <sterno@bigbrother.net>
To:             	dvd-discuss@eon.law.harvard.edu
Subject:        	Re: [dvd-discuss] DVD Descrambling Code Not a Trade Secret
Send reply to:  	dvd-discuss@eon.law.harvard.edu

> Steve Bryan wrote:
> > I don't know if this is the right forum to discuss this aspect of the 
> > issue but I wonder if they might face the same apparent fate as the 
> > audio world. Specifically there has been an underwhelming response to 
> > SACD and DVD-Audio so far. I think it would be hard to argue that an 
> > important part of this non-response is that most of the enthusiasm is 
> > about things like compressed audio and devices like iPod that allow your whole
> > audio collection to fit in a small portable package and always be available.
> Well most of the underwhelming response, I suspect, has to do with the 
> fact that most people can't tell the difference between those higher 
> fidelity audio formats and a CD.  People went to CD because the format 
> is substantially better than tape, and much more durable than vinyl. 
> But why would anybody but the ultimate audiophiles take an interest in 
> these new audio formats?  They are expensive, and most people cannot 
> tell the difference.

Neither can the audiophiles.  See

Other than the larger capacity and larger number of channels possible(6 vs2), 
the DVD Audio standard allows up to  24bit quantization and 192ksps vs 16 bits 
and 48ksps for CD. 24 bit quantization permits a 144dB dynamic range (vs 96) 
which corresponds to a pin drop to the level of pain and damage. If one 
believes in digital signal processing the the Nyquist rate, then there is 
nothing to be gained by using 192 vs 48ksps except that 192ksps permits a 
maximum frequency of 96kHz which is well beyond the range of human hearing, 
possibly to the  level of sensation but might possibly be useful for enthusists 
working to provide the  audiophile experience for canines or bats....

Bottomline....the benefits are dubious and lost when you consider that the 
electronics and speakers are the weakest part of any stereo system using 
anything beyond CD resolution

> > SACD and DVD-Audio are actively hostile to being incorporated in this 
> > new regime so that rather than losing crumbs they aren't even invited to the
> > table. I have HDTV and DVD and my own current preference is for any video that
> > can be easily ripped to my media server and viewed from there on any networked
> > device (TV, Mac or PC). If HD-DVD makes this process unavailable I'll probably
> > end up ignoring it. The fact is that DVD's can be very good which could
> > undermine efforts to close off higher resolution platforms if their
> > restrictions are too tedious. In order to participate in the future world of
> > home media servers and networks the content needs to fit in well which will
> > expose it to infringement. The 'strength' and 'weakness' come from the same
> > source: effortless networking. I don't think you can have one without the
> > other.
> I think HD-DVD is going to be another story.  Now that there's a 
> significant market of people who have HDTV's, it makes sense for their 
> to be a DVD capable of supporting that.  People do see the difference 
> between HD and non-HD, and so people will be willing to pay a premium 
> for the higher quality.

"will be willing"...I haven't seen HDTV making any great strides....in fact 
most people I know are ignoring it.

> Most people aren't going to concern themselves with ripping the video. 
> The way people play a movie is very different than how they play audio. 
>   Having a jukebox is a natural evolution of music so that you can mix 
> things up, etc.  With video, you pick something out, you play that one 
> thing, and it's usually an involved 90+ minute activity.  I mean, I'm a 
> geek, I don't listen to CD's anymore, I just use them as masters for 
> mp3's, and I've never really done much in the way of DVD ripping.  I 
> tried to do it as an experiment, but the size of the data files just 
> made it a hassle and it was easier to just have the disc.
> ---Steve