Why HD-DVD is not superfluous

HD-DVD lost the format war against BD, just due to less space storage. Despite both are suitable for different purposes.
Because I am typing on a mobile device, and my clipboard (limited to twenty items) is full, I will just describe it here.

The main disadvantage of BluRay is the same as in CD, just on the other side: the (horrible) position of the data layer.
I know, being just 100ųm away from the surface makes BD more accurate for reading and writing data, but really fragile. Resurfacing is effectively not possible.
The data surface of DVD and HD-DVD is exactly in the middle, 600 ųm away from each surface side. So it requires much deeper scratches from either side in order to cause serious damage.

Additionally, there is no BD-RAM, but HD-DVD-RAM, and even HD-DVD-RAM DL.

Mass production of media (e.g. for large software) costs even less than BD LTH (low-to-high. More information on Wikipedia.).

I am not claiming, that HD-DVD is superior, but rather intended for price worthy data archival.

Hopefully, mankind will bring us the next ultimate optical storage revolution, HVD, pretty soon.
Data should be redundantly mirrored on at least two more positions on the disc to avoid loss of information with damage.

In my opinion, both should exist. BD and HD-DVD.
Also CD-RW×32, DVD-RW×6 and DVD-RAM in higher speed classes (see Wikipedia) should be available.


It’s always about the profit, everything else is on second place. My short answer on this subject :slight_smile:

1 Like

Apparently, money rules the world.

Does anybody else have an explanation?

Both HD DVD and BD are created primarily as medium to distribute movies in HD quality. Just as DVD is created to distribute movie in SD. Their use as computer media to store data is secondary.

So support from major movie studios, like Universal, Disney, Warner, Paramount, 21st Fox…, is vital.
HD DVD has few back supporters in the beginning and eventually loses all.
Even Warner Bros., a strong HD DVD backer before, announced in 2008 that they would phase out HD DVD and move exclusively to BD, marking the de facto end of the format war between BD and HD DVD.
When a wall is about to collapse, everybody gives it a push. Just like everybody hits a man who is down. The bad news keeps coming.

New Line, HBO and National Geographic all followed in the footsteps of their parent Warner and announced they would phase out HD DVD.
Woolworths in the UK announced that beginning in March it would sell only Blu-ray discs.
NetFlix announced it would phase out HD DVD discs by the end of the year.
Walmart, the world’s largest retailer, said it would phase out HD DVD products by June.
etc, etc …

1 Like

Technically, as data storage media, it would still be useful!
Both should exist. And there is also no BD-RAM yet.

Post by @LordSmurf, who is considered as experienced (he is not active here):

BD is superior in terms of capacity and speed, but HD-DVD is definitely the archival champion.

If you have any data backing up that claim, I’d love to see it.

1 Like

Thin plate covering the recording surface is not really an issue concerning deep scratches, the blu-ray error correction is superior to the CD and DVD system. Deep scratch that will make CD unusable will do nothing in terms of blu-ray readability.

There is one good example on this forum: Optodisc Technology Corp. BD-R SL
The disc is missing serious part of the recording dye but is fully readable.

The real concern in terms of longevity for archival use is the quality of the disc itself regardless of the format.

1 Like

Wow, I see. Interesting.
Why does LordSmurf not know that?

@nixa_mk, that disc isn’t missing dye. It’s simply discolored, and can happen for several reasons. And while it does usually mean damaged dye, it’s not always the case. That sort of scan for that sort of disc is not unusual – and that includes CD and DVD.

And then error correction still doesn’t resolve the issue of the disc being more prone to errors due to physical construction. It’s been at least 7 years since I last really delved into ECC, but I don’t remember BD being anything overly “wow”, nor was HD-DVD simply “the same” as DVD (though similar from latter DVD book revisions).

@pepst, research for this does exist. But it’s really quite moot now, sort of like arguing Betamax vs. VHS.

It’s more a lament than anything else. Shucks, darn, we got shafted by $ony. HD-DVD lost not due to technical superiority, but because Sony bribed everybody and sold PS3 (first BD player) at a loss. BD costs them about 4 billion, and they never got that investment back. Oops on them, serves them right.

Always nice to see you still haunting forums. :slight_smile:

@TL7, I know far more about optical media than I have time and energy to write about.

The physical construct of Blu-ray has been a concern since the beginning, and was a primary reason that we had a format war. Not the only reason, maybe not even the #1 reason, but a top consideration.

Multi-layer BD-R is even worse. Less archival yet still – though ironically the gap between dual/tri layer BD-R quality and dual-layer DVD+R is not as great. That layer jump for DVD was really nasty while BD-R multilayering isn’t as bad.

BD-R media seems to be more cooperative than DVD as well. Meaning you get less coasters on average.

^ And I think for those two reasons, many consider BD better, but that should not be confused with archival. These are all separate traits of the media.

Ideally, yes, both formats would exist. We could have more resilient HD-DVD for data, and BD for pressing movies/etc. But unfortunately, BD is all we have to work with, just as CD was (realistically) all the had to work with pre-DVD. We must make use what’s available.

But remember: Good backup/archive/storage policy dictates you should have multiple copies, on multiple media types, in multiple places. So while DVD was good, it should never have been the only copy. Back then, acceptable policy was 2 kinds of DVD-R/+R and others (HDD, printed, tape, etc), whereas now it’s really just 1 BD-R and others (now includes solid-state, cloud/online).

The quality differences were there, and had that effect. But overall, it’s just a speed bump to archiving. BD was a backwards slide in optical tech (in construction), and overall lateral at best if you consider BD ECC as a vast improvement.

This is a fun academic conversation. :sunny:

1 Like

You’re back?! @LordSmurf.

Weren’t you inactive for 8 years? (since 6th of October 2010).

There have been some ×16 BluRay burners while HD-DVD, as far as I have seen, just had ×1 and ×2 media, so burning speed could mot be much higher.

Reading speed could theoretically be very high, but BD has higher data densities, and more accuracy due to near data layer position, which enhances readability at multi-layer discs.


You’re back?! @LordSmurf.
Weren’t you inactive for 8 years? (since 6th of October 2010). 1

Yes, that seems to be the case. :slight_smile:

Has it really been 8 years?! :crazy_face:

Your mention (@lordsmurf) generated an email to me. I read it, decided to participate. Like I said, an academic conversation. Mostly just us lamenting, wishing things had been different. My normal haunt is www.digitalFAQ.com, on the forum.

What you stated is factual, and I don’t want revisionists to poo-poo it. The physical construction has always been an issue of concern, since day 1. It was a compromise.

1 Like

Aah, I thought that already.

I am glad that you agree. HD-DVD and BluRay should both have existed, yet HD-DVD was marketed improperly.

1 Like

Welcome back, by the way.

1 Like

Nice to see you here again. :slightly_smiling_face:
The problem is, there are no reliable data (or to be exact, no data at all) on HD DVD-R quality and longevity.
The format was stilborn and barely any HD DVD-R drives and media were sold.
There even were no industrial testing devices and standards for HD DVD-Rs at the peak of the war against the bluray format.


Even if you ignore burning, the physical construction issues were present for presses. And there should be more accessible data for that.

1 Like

Slightly off-topic - this thread forced to connect my 8+ years old (unused since 2011) HDD, here are some random white papers and leaflets on HD DVD/R.

Mitsui - dye for HD DVD-R.pdf (27.2 KB)
HD DVD-R patent.pdf (385.6 KB)
HD DVD-RW.pdf (197.4 KB)
NEU_HD-DVD.pdf (768.2 KB)
04c_HD-DVD_BluRay-Poster.pdf (854.0 KB)

1 Like