AfterDawn: Tech news

Sonic drops HD DVD authoring product

Written by Andre Yoskowitz (Google+) @ 30 Jan 2008 16:19 User comments (16)

Sonic drops HD DVD authoring product Sonic Solutions has announced that it will be ending all sales of its popular Scenarist authoring product for HD DVD in an effort to condense operations and put emphasis on Blu-ray and digital distribution of HD content.
The company has also said it believes giving full support to Blu-ray and the Web-enabled BD-Live interactivity will give them a better "return on investment" than by splitting their investment between two formats.

Starting now, the Scenarist product will only be offered as a Blu-ray authoring product and will have an update soon with new BD-Live creation features. As an added bonus, any current Scenarist HD DVD customer has the option to exchange their product for the Blu-ray version.

HD DVD support will not completely be dropped however, as its ever popular AV application Roxio will still be compatible with both formats.

“Extending Sonic’s long history of commitment and support for the professional sector, we are aligning our professional product portfolio to address the evolving needs of our high-end customers,” said Dave Habiger, president and CEO at Sonic. “Our Professional Products Group plays a significant role in supporting the development of high-definition formats, including the contribution of core IP to HD DVD and Blu-ray Disc joint portfolio licenses. Going forward, the group will direct its considerable format expertise on helping our professional customers fulfill the richly interactive promise of Blu-ray Disc, including BD-Live, and aligning with a broader company strategy to enable the secure and efficient digital distribution of video entertainment.”

Rolf Hartley, senior VP and general manager of Sonic’s Professional Products Group added, “Our professional authoring customers are actively engaged with expanding their services in advanced interactive and online content creation. With a focus on Blu-ray Disc, we’re able to meet this demand with new entertainment experiences that consumers not only want but have also come to expect from today’s connected-content platforms.”

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16 user comments

130.1.2008 17:50

Personally I don't think this will have too much effect on either camp. As far as I know HD DVD Burners don't exist except in Toshiba's laptops so I don't see any damage at the moment that could come from dropping authoring support HD.

If Nero ever decides to make a move than that would have a great effect in my opinion. However, at the current stage of the skirmish between HD DVD and Blu-Ray it doesn't seem to matter if Authoring is supported for either camp.

Peace

230.1.2008 17:51

"Format War" aside, the fact that Sonic is willing to exchange a non-supported application for a supported application is good company practice.

330.1.2008 20:24

Originally posted by Pop_Smith:
Personally I don't think this will have too much effect on either camp. As far as I know HD DVD Burners don't exist except in Toshiba's laptops so I don't see any damage at the moment that could come from dropping authoring support HD.

If Nero ever decides to make a move than that would have a great effect in my opinion. However, at the current stage of the skirmish between HD DVD and Blu-Ray it doesn't seem to matter if Authoring is supported for either camp.

Peace
I think there's a little bit of confusion here.

Sonic Scenarist isn't for your weekend videographer and his BD or HD DVD burner.

It's a professional level product used by studios and authoring services for commercial releases. Platforms can cost anywhere from $5,000 to $35,000+. Nero is nowhere near as complicated or as powerful.

This announcement directly affects those who do professional HD DVD/BD authoring services and have invested in a Scenarist platform. Read how one of these pros is reacting to this announcement:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=986687

431.1.2008 7:43

juankerr, I really don't mean to sound cynical but are you 100% sure this guy really does what he says. I know I am looking deep into this but he doesn't use correct punctuation and spelling on many occasions. Wouldn't that be crucial for someone in his business?

He also uses the term pop-up menu... What exactly does that mean? Is he referring to motion type menus?

Lastly, which independent content owners or corporations are requesting HD media services? I mean, Sony and Toshiba are struggling to hit the mainstream market (in a profitable manner) with it as it is.

He does sound like he knows what he is talking about to some extent... I don't know... I just like to read the fine print before I believe everything someone says.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 31 Jan 2008 @ 7:49

531.1.2008 8:01

Ryu77: Why don't you post there and ask him yourself?

Regarding the pop-up menus - most HD DVD's have HDi coded menus which "pop-up" during playback. You have the menu there while the movie is still playing in the background. It's a new feature of HD media.

There are several independent video publishers that use HD DVD authoring services. I have a few discs from Surround Magic:

http://surroundmagic.com/

There's also Navarre Corp, Discovery Channel, Phoenix Group etc. Check the highdefdigest.com HD DVD release schedule for their titles.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 31 Jan 2008 @ 8:23

631.1.2008 9:28

Well, there you go. :-D

I don't want to join up to that forum just to make a post questioning the mans integrity. I am more than likely being cynical anyway. I guess I was just trying to say he is only one person who none of us know.

My personal opinion is that he is right with what he is saying anyway, Sonic seems to be a high end authoring program... And this is yet another company moving away from HD-DVD to blu-ray.

In regards to the pop-up menu's... Duh! I should have known that. Silly me... For some reason when I was thinking authoring my mind switched into DVD authoring mode (which I have spent too much time doing), so I only considered regular DVD authoring options.

Just to let you know, I am a proud PS3 owner and all for blu-ray. To be honest, I am pretty much over this whole HD-DVD vs. blu-ray mayhem going on in these forums. I mean, if you can't see what is going to happen in the near future... You are either blind or in denial.

NOTE!! Before the HD-DVD camp jumps onto me and starts some forum Kung-Fu, I didn't post anything about which format I thought was better... Please! Let's not destroy this thread with that crazy activity too!

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 31 Jan 2008 @ 9:41

"Great minds discuss ideas... Average minds discuss events... Small minds discuss people"

PS3 compatible video creation thread... mkv2vob, tsMuxeR etc.: http://forums.afterdawn.com/thread_view.cfm/621809
The complete HD (Blu-ray/HD-DVD) back-up thread.: http://forums.afterdawn.com/thread_view.cfm/639346

731.1.2008 10:21

Originally posted by juankerr:
Read how one of these pros is reacting to this announcement:
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=986687


That's a sad story. This guy invests $20,000+ on a Scenarist platform and now he has to fold his business because he can't get any clients to release on HD DVD.

Maybe he should take advantage of Sonic's offer to migrate to BluRay support or just do SD DVD's. BTW did you see the price for that BluPrint platform? $50K plus $10K a year for mandatory support.

831.1.2008 11:43

You're right but to invest so heavily into something that has obvious risk is a business decision that he at one point had the opportunity to make. He chose his path and things didn't turn out so bright.

As with any investment, be it real estate, shares, or a business venture... There are risks. Usually the bigger the risk, the bigger the rate of return if things do turn out right. In this case, it wasn't the right choice and things didn't turn out right.


"Great minds discuss ideas... Average minds discuss events... Small minds discuss people"

PS3 compatible video creation thread... mkv2vob, tsMuxeR etc.: http://forums.afterdawn.com/thread_view.cfm/621809
The complete HD (Blu-ray/HD-DVD) back-up thread.: http://forums.afterdawn.com/thread_view.cfm/639346

931.1.2008 11:45

Looks like everybody is dropping HD-DVD.

1031.1.2008 11:46

Originally posted by juankerr:
I have a few discs from Surround Magic:
http://surroundmagic.com/


juankerr: Surround Records/Surround Magic has announced format neutrality and will begin to release on BluRay:

http://www.highdefdigest.com/news/show/I...mat_Format/1411

1131.1.2008 11:59

He did mention that Toshiba offered authoring software, but he didn't state the cost. I guess if Toshiba really wants to help out, they can make their software available for cheap or free.

As for this article, I think it's just another sign of where things are headed. Personally, I don't own either HD format and I don't plan on purchasing either one in the near future. It appears that a wait and see approach is the best advice, unless you absolutely must have HD.

121.2.2008 22:56
UkWizard
Inactive

So what if they go bd exclusive. Bd is on the verge of being cracked & so is drm bs.Hd-dvd will come bouncing back. What toshiba need is a big price reduction for hd-dvd movies in the stores then bd will melt just like mini disc.

138.2.2008 18:13
meitshell
Inactive

I do apologize for the poor spelling and punctuation on the AVS thread. I need to be more careful with that :)

I took a risk and lost. Thats fine but I'd like to point out that this format "war" has hurt many small business owners like myself. I initially decided to author HD DVD because of it's low cost. I also felt independent content was what really mattered (to me anyway) and knew BD was a format which would be out of reach for many. I never expected things to move this fast.

I just started visiting some of these forums recently and as an author and compressionist, I don't understand how one might LOVE one format over another in terms of its technical merits. It's VERY odd to read threads arguing why AVC is better than VC-1.

As for the Sonic deal, that was the real nail in the coffin...IMO.

148.2.2008 19:33

Originally posted by meitshell:
I do apologize for the poor spelling and punctuation on the AVS thread. I need to be more careful with that :)

I took a risk and lost. Thats fine but I'd like to point out that this format "war" has hurt many small business owners like myself. I initially decided to author HD DVD because of it's low cost. I also felt independent content was what really mattered (to me anyway) and knew BD was a format which would be out of reach for many. I never expected things to move this fast.

I just started visiting some of these forums recently and as an author and compressionist, I don't understand how one might LOVE one format over another in terms of its technical merits. It's VERY odd to read threads arguing why AVC is better than VC-1.

As for the Sonic deal, that was the real nail in the coffin...IMO.
Yes, as I said I was probably being cynical. I am a bit of a perfectionist. I am truly sorry if I offended you.

On the AVS forum, you mentioned that you finished your first HD-DVD surf flick and we should check it out, but you didn't post any title or link. Could you do that? I would love to see what you do. :-D

I do feel that your situation hasn't been a profitable one and that is hard luck. I am quite business minded and I understand the risk you took in your HD-DVD investment. I hope you can bounce back and find a way to utilize Blu-ray as your business medium.

In regards to your AVC vs. VC-1 comment. From what I can see is that they both offer about the same quality. I prefer AVC as there are more applications available to work with it. As with anything from Microsoft, VC-1 is controlled by them. Where as AVC is not. As you know there is even an open source version of the AVC codec (x264).

I hope you can find a way to get your business back on track. Here's a little quote to lift your spirit...

"To be successful, you only need to get up one more time than you fall down"
This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 08 Feb 2008 @ 22:23

"Great minds discuss ideas... Average minds discuss events... Small minds discuss people"

PS3 compatible video creation thread... mkv2vob, tsMuxeR etc.: http://forums.afterdawn.com/thread_view.cfm/621809
The complete HD (Blu-ray/HD-DVD) back-up thread.: http://forums.afterdawn.com/thread_view.cfm/639346

158.2.2008 20:48
meitshell
Inactive

Thanks for that!

It's done but the client is still searching for a distribution deal. If you PM me I can give you the name. It was shot 720p but it still looks great.

This message has been edited since its posting. Latest edit was made on 08 Feb 2008 @ 20:52

1621.2.2008 16:04

Ok soo now that we know blu-ray has won or wining the battle then companies are now going to invest their time and money into the technology and then we will have a flood of different blu-ray hardware and software competing well bring on the onslaught.

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