I have a high-definition television, which is great for watching HD television, but not so great for watching my DVD collection. DVD's play at a much smaller resolution than the 1080 resolution of my new TV, so what used to appear to be crisp and clear on my old TV is now slightly fuzzy. It doesn't prevent me from watching movies, but it definitely screams out that 'something must be done'.
Up until this week, I assume that the 'something' would be in the form of purchasing a blu-ray disc player and converting some or all of my precious to that format (whenever they become available). I had read that the blu-ray player upconverts existing DVDs to near-HD, so at the very least, it would be a step up. Unfortunately, blu-ray players run well over $300, even for the cheapest. The 'something' could easily wait until I had committed to that solution.
However, thanks to a peer-pressure induced session of weeknight bar socialization, I happened to mention my plight to a friend. This friend looked at me as if I was crazy and said, "You can get a DVD converter for like 80 bucks." Eighty? WTF? Was it true? Sure enough, the next day I saw a couple of prospects over at Amazon.com (I am a self-admitted Amazon junkie), but ended up purchasing the Sony, along with HDMI cable for an extra $5 (cables not included!).Anxiousness was lessened by the free two-day delivery of my product (shameless Amazon plug!), but I was still nervous when I plugged in the new one. I decided to test the effectiveness on a film I watched most recently, Jumper (mini-review: good, not great, could be better, sequel will be fun). It only took me a few seconds to realize my purchase was not a waste of money. But the real test would be saved for... Empire.
Needless to say, I was positively giddy watching select scenes, in what felt like a new showing. Bespin whites popped, the carbon-freezing chamber's darkness was clear (Vader's belt and chestplate were visible!) and the star fields never looked deeper or more crystal. The only downside now is that I feel like I should re-watch all my favorites IMMEDIATELY.
So, an enthusiastic recommendation for anyone who has an HD TV to get the upgrader; you will thank me. YOU WILL THANK ME.