New Line to Give AVC a Try?
There were two reasons that Microsoft backed HD DVD so strongly – the first was HDi and the second was the prevalent use of their VC-1 coded for the video.
Obviously there is no room for HDi to be used on Blu-ray releases – however Warner has religiously used the VC-1 codec on their releases on both HD DVD and Blu-ray.
Now that they are moving to Blu-ray only releases (only 8 more HD DVDs to go!), could Warner be considering giving AVC a try?
I noticed in the latest release info that New Line’s title Semi-Pro will reportedly be AVC. I checked with the High Def Digest team and they confirmed that the press release they received did indeed say it would use the AVC codec.
New Line was notable in that they decided to drop HD DVD releases almost before they started them, rather than release HD DVDs into the middle of the year like Warner. Also a departure from Warner’s methods, Shoot Em Up was very obviously encoded for Blu-ray, not for both formats. It remains to be seen if this departure from VC-1 is a sign of what to expect for New Line moving forward, or Warner as well, or even is maybe just an error on the part of the press release.
While it may seem unimportant, other Blu-ray studios have used the BD50 and AVC codec as a marketing tool, associating high bitrate AVC with quality.
In any case, it will be interesting to see how things move forward, and if Microsoft sees both HDi and VC-1 effectively fall into disuse along with HD DVD.
Update Edit: The High Def Digest site now lists the title as VC-1 – apparently they got word that was more reliable than the press release that this will be VC-1, just like everything else from Warner and New Line has been to date.
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