Digital Guild Canada


MICROSOFT XBOX 360 HD DVD ADD-ON: Blessing or burden?

MS XBox 360 HD DVDMicrosoft has really hit the nail on the head with the Xbox 360 HD DVD. Many had complained about having to buy an additional piece of hardware to do what the Playstation 3 already does, but that was before we knew just how diverse this little demure Toshiba HD drive in the slick white case could be. Firstly, the price: $200.00! There is no Blu Ray player that costs even close to that or HD DVD player for that matter. This add on cuts the cost of all other units by at least 2/3. Secondly, compatibility.

I have been reading about this all over the net, and my experience has actually varied slightly as it will depending on your rig setup. Most claim that the drive is not acknowledged by their pc’s until the drivers were installed (Toshiba HD DVD drivers). Mine however recognized it as an Xbox 360 HDVD drive automatically. That was a good sign. This is good, whereas Mac systems embraced it without hesitation according to reports. Win DVD 8 Platinum (Corel) and Cyberlinks PowerDVD 8 seem to be the players of choice although I haven’t been able to run King Kong yet on my pc, I will persevere. I have played it on my plasma screen and I have to say that the difference in both sound and video through an HDMI cable are mind blowing.

Not only were the visuals so crisp and clear and vibrant, but my sub woofer suddenly seemed alive and booming. Also, as I get older, I tend to fall asleep more easily while watching a flick, either the long hours we log in or the long hours staring at a computer screen, but I found that it was much easier on my eyes to watch a flick in HD. A definite plus.

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