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Pioneer Ceasing LaserDisc Player Production


Pioneer Ceasing LaserDisc Player Production

We've already mourned the death (perhaps a little pre-humously) of SACD and now the time has come to observe a minutes silence for another format - LaserDisc. Pioneer has finally called it quits on the format and, as it was the last manufacturer left still making players. Interestingly enough, as Pioneer also claimed bragging rights as the first manufacturer to ship a player.

To this point Pioneer was still making three models of LaserDisc player, the DVL-919, DVK-900 and DVL-K88. Stats fans might be interested to know that apparently the company sold 9.5 million LaserDisc players itself, of the 16.8 million total shipped. To put that number in a little perspective, HD DVD managed in the one million units sold region, though that format only lasted a couple of years, not decades like LaserDisc.

Many of us at TR (myself not included by dint of being too young) have fond memories of LaserDisc. Sure it was prohibitively expensive, but as the forerunner to Compact Disc, DVD and ultimately our current format of choice Blu-ray, LaserDisc's demise does still bring a small tear to the corner of our eyes.

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January 15, 2009, 3:37 am

Ah, I remember my friend had a Laserdisc player, back in what feels like must have been the seventies, but was surely later? I was very jealous. An optical disc the size of an vinyl LP, with most films spread over two discs. I can't remember whether the player sucked the disc in PS3 style or had a drawer large enough to hold underwear. Still they had their early adopter priorities right as they lived in a house with an outside loo and a tin bath that had to be brought in on Sundays.


January 15, 2009, 1:44 pm

I resent your choice of words used to describe blu-ray. It was decided by various forces; not solely by the consumer, as you imply.


January 15, 2009, 2:25 pm

You resent it? Really? You care that much?

The Mighty Ben

January 15, 2009, 2:36 pm

@williamn - Hugo is making no such implication. By 'our choice' he could mean TR or the industry as a whole backed it over HDDVD. He's not speaking on behalf of the consumer, although I think you'll find the majority of us didn't care much either way, or were confused. Most consumers just wanted the format war to end so we'd know which player to buy. I'm sure ps3 owners like myself are happy at the way it turned out!


January 15, 2009, 3:30 pm

My favourite memory of laserdisc was handing a laserdisc to a friend on magic mushrooms and asking him &#8216put this cd on&#8217. Oh how we laughed (for five hours!)

Andy Vandervell

January 15, 2009, 3:44 pm

Comment of the Year Contender #1

Kashif Bhatti

January 15, 2009, 10:30 pm

Still have my collection and pioneer player - still looks great, and unknowing guests marvel at the size of the things... before I tell them truth....


January 16, 2009, 12:00 am

ben: perception is projection.

Hallainzil: well yeah, HD DVD was the better format.

Paul Nicolson

January 16, 2009, 3:12 am

ahh will we be saying that in 5 years time about dvd and blu-ray when we all have 100mbit broadband ????????????

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