CeBIT 2006: Blu-ray & HD DVD

No point buying an HD ready screen without suitable ammunition.


Another Blu-ray only advocate is Samsung and its player was designed to compliment a home cinema. A powerhouse of a device, the BD-P1000, supports full 1920 x 1080 playback as well as CDs and DVDs. A 9-in-2 memory card reader can be used to download and upload content and, naturally, it sports an HDMI interface.

Samsung plans to release the BD-P1000 in September with an RRP of 999 euros. Could it be the perfect Christmas present?


Also backing Blu-ray and showing both PC and home cinema related products was Panasonic. Like Samsung’s player, the ‘BD-J’ is capable of playing 1920 x 1080 video as well as the content from both CDs and DVDs. In addition, computer codecs such as Mpeg2 and Mpeg4 can be fired up. An RRP of 2,000 euros seems a little steep (even for next gen technology) for the player’s debut in Q3 but I was told that could be open to significant change.


As for the Blu-ray computer based devices three Blu-ray ROM drives were on show. None had official company code names at this stage but the ultra slim line model for thin and light laptops particularly caught the eye. Given that Panasonic is also manufacturing the Blu-ray media itself there is little surprise it has so many bases neatly covered.


Some Blu-ray feature films were also on the Panasonic display but the choice of titles once again leaves something to be desired (apart from the acceptable obsession with Keira Knightley).

Rounding off a ludicrously busy first day at CeBIT was LG with its own Blu-ray player. The BD199 does everything I had come to expect from the first generation of BR machines: 1080p compatibility, DVD and CD backwards compatibility, Mpeg video support (as well as H.264) and the prerequisite HDMI interface.


LG was calling the BD199 the ‘World’s First HD Disc Player’ and that may be true, but I’ve seen far too many devices and been audibly and visually bamboozled by far too many High Def clips from Robots and The Lord of the Rings to care.

At this moment in time I have little feeling left in my feet, a genuine anger rising every time I see non alcoholic Becks and growing frustration through my inability to speak German. It is time to sign off from day one my amigos. More displays, next gen media and the first of my MP3 player and digital camera coverage comes tomorrow. ”Auf Wiedersehen!”

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