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Sunday, January 9, 2011

Blue what?

Well, it's 2011 now and you've undoubtedly heard the word Blu-ray at least once, in fact due to it's increasing popularity it has almost become "common", but you may say, "Wait a minute, I keep hearing about this Blu-ray but I have no idea what it is!" Don't fret. I'm going to lay it out for you. Blu-ray actually refers to two different things. First of all is the Blu-ray player. Very similar to the DVD player (also able to play DVDs), the Blu-ray player employs a blue laser to read the disc (hence the name Blu-ray). A normal DVD uses a 650 nanometer red laser, Blu-ray uses a 405 nm "blue" laser. This shorter wavelength allows for over 5 times more data storage per layer than allowed by DVD. As I mentioned, the Blu-ray player will not only play regular DVDs, but also make them High Definition (post about HD to come later).
Secondly, we have the Blu-ray disc. Blu-ray discs are made in such a way that they can hold about 6 times the amount DVDs can hold. This allows movies to be converted and recorded to the disc without compression, providing lossless video and audio, the result is higher definition. Blu-ray is only fully realized on an HDTV (High Definition Television) with an HDMI cable (High Definition Media Interface), which allows higher transmission of information. HDMI cables transport audio and video at HD levels.
So, if you have the means, and the HDTV on which to utilize it, I fully recommend obtaining a Blu-ray player and some Blu-ray movies, you will quickly realize the improved image. Even if you don't grab up some Blu-ray movies, the player will definitely sharpen the image of your regular DVDs as well. In the end, with the way things are going (especially with the price drops), a Blu-ray player is a worthwhile investment, and a definite "must have" for cinephiles. Hope this helps...

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