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Dixons to stop selling VCRs

Written by James Delahunty (Google+) @ 22 Nov 2004 2:04 User comments (7)

Dixons to stop selling VCRs After 26 years of sales, Dixons will stop selling VCRs before Christmas. Sales of DVD Players at Dixons are currently beating sales of VCRs by 40 to 1. Dixons will focus more now on the sales of devices such as DVD recorders and devices it calls the "next generation of home entertainment systems". If you look back even just a couple of years, almost every home had a VCR, it was the ruling technology in home video entertainment but now sales of VCRs are at a crawl as DVD player sales are growing like wild fire. "We're saying goodbye today to one of the most important products in the history of consumer technology," said John Mewett, marketing director at Dixons, "The video recorder has been with us for a generation - and many of us have grown up with the joys - and occasional frustrations - of tape-based recording. We are now entering the digital age and the new DVD technology available represents a step change in picture quality and convenience."
The first VCR ever sold by Dixons was the JVC HR-3300EK, a piano key operated top-loader with a red LED digital clock/timer. After that VCRs were among the biggest sales world wide for years but now the demand has turned to higher quality digital options. The question that most would like to hear an answer to now is how long will DVD rule the market? High Definition TVs and DVD players may be the next thing to see in everybody’s home, but what comes after that?

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7 user comments

122.11.2004 7:54

the death of analog continues...

222.11.2004 10:38

farewell VHS, you will be missed.

322.11.2004 11:13

I have hated VHS ever since DVD came out. Since I'm not exactly an adult, that means I've hated VHS for a long time... =P It's a really interesting question... I can see Blu-Ray becoming the next generation market king, but what I'm really interested is how Blu-Ray will be used. Will films have "Specially Special Effects"? Will games have "Amazingly Amazing Graphics and Extra-Long Long gameplay?" Or will people just use it for backupping?

423.11.2004 7:21

Toiletman: HDTV... Upto 1920x1080 resolution, compared to the current NTSC-DVD resolution of 720x480 or PAL-DVD resolution of 720x576. That's almost seven times higher resolution than the current generation has, so to achieve even the same bitrate per pixel what current DVDs have, the bitrate would have to be increased to 7 times higher. Assuming that 5Mbps is the norm now, it means 35Mbps bitrate. And considering that single layer Blu-Ray holds appx 25 gigs and commercial DVDs hold appx. 8.5 gigs, you can see that considering the maximum resolution and bitrate used for that one in both formats, that the "bitrate per pixel" is actually forced to drop significantly. Obviously it is not that simple, as MPEG encoding doesn't work like basic BMP image, but still illustrates that Blu-Ray, etc aren't exactly a huge leap forward in terms of how many minutes of video they can store, but rather maintains current status quo or even drops it slightly in terms of minutes, but improves the (maximum available) resolution dramatically. Bit like "WOW, what we are going to do with DVD, as it can hold five full-length VCD movies, are people going to store just all of their VCDs on few DVD discs?!". No, that didn't happen. People just switched to a better picture quality, not (significantly) higher quantity per disc.

523.11.2004 10:04

Wow, that's fascinating... 1920 x 1080 resolution. At the moment I'm watching movies on a 720x480 and the picture quality is absolutely fine with me, and when I say fine, I mean no "jaggies" or "fuzzy" images. I need to get myself a HDTV =D P.S. Do you think there would be any point of going higher than 1920 res? Hell, I think 1920 is practically perfect real life quality, so what would be the point of going higher if no one could tell the difference?

Everyone is entitled to their own true opinion. Either respect that or don't.

623.11.2004 14:26

Toiletman: Apparently the resolution they use for digital cinema trials, meaning that the whole process is done digitally, straight from the shooting of the movie, is called 4k, which is 4096 x 2160 pixels. So, still a lot of room for improvement -- and some sources say that the analog film camera's film resolution is nearer to 8k; 8192x4320 pixels. Now, thats a high resolution. Once we reach that, what next? Obvious answer: remove MPEG encoding (which is lossy anyways) and use RGB24 instead. Now, take your calculator and come up with a bitrate for 8k video in uncompressed RGB24 format: 8192 * 4320 * 24 (bits per pixel) * 30 (frames per second in the US) / 1024 (to get bits to kilobits) / 1024 (to get kilos to megas) / 1024 (to get megas to gigas) == 23.73Gbps which equals to 2.97 gigabytes per second... Now, next time you hear somebody questioning the idea behind the orange-violet ultra-beam laser discs coming up in 2009 holding 75 terabytes, you know that there are uses for it..

724.11.2004 11:33

This is why I love math =)

Everyone is entitled to their own true opinion. Either respect that or don't.

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