Apple HD movies vs Blu Ray

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by solideliquid, Sep 9, 2009.

  1. solideliquid macrumors 6502


    Aug 8, 2008
    Hello folks.

    I'm looking at buying Crank 2. It is available from iTunes for $20 in HD format and $25 in Blu ray from Best Buy (Amazon $20 bluray sold out).

    I'm viewing my movies on a 1080p 40" Sony Bravia set. How would you compare the two pictures (HD Download vs BR)? Is it going to be a big difference? I have plenty of blu rays which look great, but I haven't downloaded any HD movies from iTunes yet.
  2. gr8tfly macrumors 603


    Oct 29, 2006
    ~119W 34N
    You should rent one and see how you like it. Whether you see a difference probably depends on your viewing distance. I'm about 7' from our 50" and they look pretty good, but I can tell the difference when going to Blu-ray. Also, there aren't any "extras" if you buy from iTunes. That said, I don't mind paying an extra buck to rent in HD. It's well worth it.
  3. sammich macrumors 601


    Sep 26, 2006
    Some people can notice the difference and care. Some people just don't care. If you think about it, both Apple's HD and BR use roughly the same codec, but the BR version is on the order of 10x larger :)apple:3 GB, BR > 25GB).

    like gr8fly said, rent and see for yourself, that should give you enough of an idea for all your purchases. There is also the question of buy vs. rent...

  4. gr8tfly macrumors 603


    Oct 29, 2006
    ~119W 34N
    great-to-fly, as in pilot, but can't take the time to say "to", instead of "t' " :)
  5. roidy macrumors 65816

    Dec 30, 2008
    Nottingham, UK
    ATV HD 720p (1280x720) vs Blu-ray 1080p (1920x1080) - If you've got a 1080 tv then why not use it to the best of it's ability.

    Apples HD content is way over priced when it's nowhere near the resolution of Blu-ray. Plus Blu-ray will have extras.

    I would always choose Blu-ray over ATV HD. Unless I just want a quick rental to watch and am not interested in owning the film.
  6. solideliquid thread starter macrumors 6502


    Aug 8, 2008
    I agree about the renting, but I think about half of new films on iTunes are purchase only, and most of those cannot be purchased in HD.
  7. BoulderBum macrumors 6502a

    Feb 3, 2008
    IMO, you don't go with Apple TV if you want quality, you go with it if you want convenience. While the Apple TV "HD" movies' resolution is technically HD, the video is VERY compressed and you lose a lot of the color depth.

    For example, my one purchased iTunes HD movies is about 4.5 GB large. By contrast, Blu Ray movies average around 25 GB, and go up to about 40GB. That's a lot of information lost to compression, and the the end result is that iTunes "HD" looks little better than the SD versions.

    The again, you can buy iTunes movies with a push of a button, take them with you on your iPhone, and never have to worry about getting off the couch to play them: you just select them in an indexed/categorized menu system instead of digging through all the Blu Ray cases and physically handling the discs.

    I'd concur with others that it would be best to rent an iTunes HD movie but, then again, if you buy one and don't like it, you're only out $20.
  8. northy124 macrumors 68020


    Nov 18, 2007
    Personally I'd go with the Blu-ray for Crank 2. If it was some children's film I guess I'd go with the Apple HD version for connivence when little ones (cousins) come over :) and I also don't have to worry about them accidentally ruining a disc which is a huge bonus IMO.

    Basically it goes like this:
    Films for Mature Audiences (14+) get the Blu-ray as they are generally worth it IMO.
    Films for Children get Apple HD version :)

    There are other factors as well like quality and if you can tell the difference go with the Blu-ray if you demand it, if you don't well Apple HD versions will do fine :)
  9. TRAG macrumors 6502


    Jan 6, 2009
    Louisiana, USA
    That was well put. Any movie that is meaningful (in the loosest terms) to you I'd go for Blu-ray simply because it's the standard and looks great. Any movie that you are on the fence over, want to watch on the go, or just don't really care about quality, just rent or buy in HD on ITMS.
  10. CalMin macrumors 6502a


    Nov 8, 2007
    imho, AppleTV HD is good enough. Blu-ray is clearly superior, but the inconvenience of physical media offsets that for me. I would buy all my content digitally if given the chance, but the HD collection to buy is poor. HD rentals, on the other hand, are excellent value propositions vs. schlepping to Blockbuster and finding that the blu-rays are all checked out.
  11. nick9191 macrumors 68040

    Feb 17, 2008
    They key selling point (or not selling point depending on how you look at it) for TV, is instant gratification for the user. No traipsing down to a store, no waiting days for your order to arrive. And of course high quality.

    But if you're after supreme picture quality, BR is the only way to go.
  12. SAIRUS macrumors 6502a

    Aug 21, 2008
    The original Crank was such an awesome blu-ray in terms of video quality and audio quality that I would assume Crank 2 would be just as awesome.

    Oh and for $5 more you get:
    • higher AV quality
    • special features
    • some discs have a digital copy already!
    • not eat into a bandwidth cap if your ISP has one
    • hard copy proof you own the film
    • easier ability to rent out the film
    • you can sell the disc if you don't like it
    • actual exercise of going outside and getting the disc

    Besides a movie rack is fun to show off too. You can customize it with exclusive cases etc.
  13. BORIStheBLADE macrumors regular


    Jun 15, 2008
    If you haven't seen Crank 2 I would rent it first. Crank was much better than Crank 2.
  14. AAPLaday Guest


    Aug 6, 2008
    Manchester UK
    Get the Blu-ray, you can always sell it if you get bored of it :D
  15. GermanSuplex macrumors 6502a


    Aug 26, 2009
    For me, it's more about content than it is picture quality or whatnot. For one, I'm perfectly happy with my standard-def mp4 files encoded from DVD.

    What determines if I'm going to buy a Blu Ray or buy it from iTunes depends on how much I like the movie, and also if it comes with digital copy. If I can spend five or ten dollars more and get extras, a digital copy which itself looks pretty darn good when upscaled, and any other bonuses, I'll go for that. Or, if its simply a movie I really like a lot and want a physical copy of, I'll spring for the Blu-Ray. Otherwise, I'll rent or buy on iTunes.
  16. Scarpad macrumors 68000


    Jan 13, 2005
    The Blu Ray will always look better being that it's 1080p vs 720p, how much better will definately $5 better. But Crank 2 has such a loopy visual style and half the time is fimed overexposed it' a title you probably won't notice on.
  17. Scarpad macrumors 68000


    Jan 13, 2005

    If apple priced their HD Movies between $9.99 and $12.99 I might bite, but $20 is too much, I'm sure it's an issue of the Studio not wanting to hurt blu ray sales, but they cannot have it both ways, they should realize that there is a portion that would use digital Downloads under $13 and a Portion who will buy the Blu.
  18. Michael CM1 macrumors 603

    Feb 4, 2008
    This isn't even a question. Go get the Blu-ray version. The HD movies Apple sells are HD only because they got the resolution up to 720 pixels wide. The video is compressed and the bitrate is reduced. If you use HandBrake, record one item at a 500 bitrate and another at 2000. You'll see the difference. Same goes with Blu-ray. It's uncompressed video and audio, which is why 25 and 50GB discs are needed.

    If you're considering the BD option, you obviously aren't one of the "I'm too lazy to open up a disc package" people. Therefore, it seems that your decision has been made. What might not seem like much of a difference today may be astonishing if you were to later on get an LED TV or a 120 or 240Hz TV.
  19. Michael CM1 macrumors 603

    Feb 4, 2008
    Seriously! Keep your eye on iTunes and you can find a lot of BD sales that put them under the price of any digital offering. You also get a compressed 720p version of the movie with extras only available through iTunes (if any) via a download. Blu-ray offers all the extras and much better video. I think I have bought a total of 3 movies from iTunes. Two of them were $5. The other was something I had never seen elsewhere at $10.
  20. SqB macrumors 6502

    Jan 14, 2008
    Northern Colorado
    All the recent Blu Ray movie's I've purchased lately have been "special edition" that include BRD, DVD and digital copy. This way you have all the bases covered. Target is good for these if you buy in first few days after release they usually have significant discounts on the movies.
  21. Chundles macrumors G4


    Jul 4, 2005
    A few nit-picks.

    The resolution of the AppleTV HD isn't 720 pixels wide , they're 720 pixels high.

    Also, the video on Blu-ray is definitely compressed at ~30Mbps but not anywhere near as much as the AppleTV stuff at ~5Mbps. Uncompressed HD footage is in the order of 100+Mbps.

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