The Blu-ray Debate: When To Demand A High-Def Deliverable

Upon an approaching deadline, it is not uncommon to get a request for Blu-ray at the very last possible minute and oftentimes our clients feel that this need is crucial to the delivery of the project. Blu-ray Discs (BDs), better known as the high-definition replacement for DVDs, are great at displaying awesome HD video quality on a disc the size of a standard DVD. Although delivering on Blu-ray Disc is never a problem, typically we do not deliver on them unless requested.

The reason is two-fold. First, BDs are more expensive than regular DVDs, so we see no reason to charge our customers for them unless it is a must. Secondly, Blu-ray is still not a widely adopted format, and in our eyes playability is a much greater concern than a slightly larger resolution.

As a video client, it is important to know that when your project originates and is handled in high-definition, transcoding it to standard-definition presents very little noticeable loss in certain situations. Furthermore, it’s much better to transcode down at the project level, rather than to rely on consumer-level projection equipment that will downgrade your image on the fly. So when considering which product you wish to walk away with, the biggest factor to consider between HD and SD is control of the equipment that will be displaying your video. Since there are a variety of ways to display your media, you are going to need total control of the presentation and the equipment associated with it.

When To Demand HD

One-on-one Presentations
Specifically for presentations that happen in your own office. Here you should have the opportunity to customize your A/V setup and really deliver the visual impact that your video is designed for.

Tradeshow Presentations
Again, this would rely on equipment that you bring or have delivered to a specific venue, so you can rely on having all of the equipment you need to present your HD video properly.

Detail-Oriented Video
Video produced solely to show off the fine-detail of a product is the perfect use of HD and should not be neglected. Do whatever it takes to show this video in the highest quality possible. The following video is a perfect example of the type of video that shows a good deal of fine detail and an ideal candidate for a Blu-ray deliverable.

As a video company we understand how frustrating this BD vs. DVD debate must seem to someone who simply wants to get the picture quality they paid for. Still unsure?  A quick call to your video production company should be all you need to determine which format is best for your specific project.