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Old 06-23-2011, 04:00 PM
Jason Dunn
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Default What's Your Digital Convenience Price Threshold?

<p><img src="" style="border: 1px solid #d2d2bb;" /></p><p>In the tug of war between atoms and bits, how much does it take to sway you one way or another? Digital download or buying DVDs - which way do you roll? I bought the first episode of "Breaking Bad" on iTunes a few weeks ago, watched it yesterday, and enjoyed it quite a bit. Since I don't currently have an active <a href="" target="_blank"></a> account (it's a DVD rental service) I'd be looking at buying Breaking Bad season one. How do the numbers work out? <MORE /></p><ul><li>iTunes SD: $14.99 CAD</li><li>iTunes HD: $20.99 CAD</li><li> DVD: $19.47</li><li> Blu-ray: $28.99</li></ul><p>So there's a small $4.48 price difference between the atoms and the bits in SD, and a more significant price difference of $9.52 for the HD versions. Do I go atoms or bits? The pros and cons from my point of view:</p><ul><li><strong>Atoms PROs:</strong> DVDs are easy to share with family and friends, and easy to rip (regular DVDs at least) for conversion onto any device I own</li><li><strong>Atoms CONs:</strong> DVDs take up space, and there's a small shipping charge</li><li><strong>Bits PROs:</strong> Immediate gratification - I can start watching it today</li><li><strong>Bits CONs:</strong> iTunes DRM means I can't share the TV show with friends, or even use it on all of my own devices. It's an Apple-only party for this content, which I <em>loathe</em>.</li></ul><p>I should note that there's also Amazon Video on Demand, but since I'm Canada I can't use that service. And doesn't stream Breaking Bad so that's not an option.</p><p>So where do you fall on the scale? Myself, I've decided I want to own the atoms rather than the bits, so I've added them to my Amazon wish list and will buy them at some point.</p>
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Old 06-23-2011, 04:59 PM
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Default buy and resell

I always lean towards buying the actual disks since I want to watch it as I choose and normally it ends up cheaper anyways.

I am not sure about Canadian prices but here you can get the dvd here for $18 and resell it back to amazon later for $7 currently. Since it is not a new show will likely hold most of this value. Or the blue ray you can buy for $20 and resell for $11.50. That way you get to watch it as you wish loan out or whatever and then return so you don't have long term storage once done. Amazon even pays shipping here so no cost in selling back.
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Old 06-23-2011, 05:33 PM
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Default For me, the comparison is a little different

I consider any DRM content to be next to worthless. Until the DRM issues get clearly settled cross-platform, I won't pay for something that will only run on my iPod, or Windows Phone for that matter.

So if it has to come with DRMs, then I vote for the atoms every time. Non-DRM that I can render in to Atoms for my own use, that's a tougher comparison.

Usually I like Atoms though. A non-techie Wife and small kids make DVDs the way to go for me. Your mileage/kilometerige may vary.

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Old 06-23-2011, 06:01 PM
Tim Williamson
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This was a really interesting comparison, for me it was a debate on atoms vs. bits for music.

A few years ago I was saying "I'll never buy a song through iTunes". Once Apple removed the DRM I started to warm up to the idea and have purchased a small number of albums/songs through iTunes. That took care of the DRM concern.

My other concern was what happens if my HD crashes, how will I get my music back? I always liked the piece of mind of having a hardcopy CD that I could re-rip in case I lose the bits, but now that I have a multi-destination backup plan (external HD and cloud service) I'm not really concerned about my HD crashing at all (except for the time it takes to restore). Additionally, with the announcement of Apple's iTunes Match, people who have no backup plan (bad bad bad) can have the piece of mind of having all their music backed up and recoverable from the cloud.

I haven't had to tackle the video beast yet, but recently I got the bug to watch Arrested Development again so I was shopping around. iTunes had all the seasons available for $29.99 each (how convenient, but pricey). I took a quick trip to Fry's Electronics and found all 3 seasons on sale for $9.99 each DVD. I scooped up the DVD's without a second though. With the DVD's I can now rip them to any device I own (or may ever own). So I'm also with Jason on leaning towards owning the atoms (at this point). All bets are off if Apple is ever able to convince the Studios to remove the DRM.
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Old 06-23-2011, 06:05 PM
Jorj Bauer
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I fall in line with y'all - my preference is atoms, since I find DRM repugnant and repulsive.

Even so, I'm increasingly aware of how many atoms I'm having shipped all around the country just to get them to me, and what the environmental impact of all that shipping is.

So, much as I hate DRM, I've decided that the state of the planet is more important to me than my actually owning the content and being able to do with it what I want, where I want, when I want. I choose to accept this as the price for offsetting the other conveniences which I also choose not to live without.

And obviously if there's a non-DRM'd alternative and a DRM'd one, I'll pick the one that's not.
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Old 06-23-2011, 06:16 PM
Brad Adrian
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What I also find interesting is how much you can learn about people from the movies they watch! Breaking Bad and Arrested Development just happen to be the two TV shows I've most recently decided to purchase, too!

My problem has been that some of the DVDs I've purchased lately don't rip with the software I've been using. If I could find reliable ripping software, I'd buy the DVD almost every time and store it as a backup.

Any suggestions for good ripping software?
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Old 06-23-2011, 07:30 PM
Chris Gohlke
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For music and movies I tend to go with the atoms for the flexibility since I can normally use it however I want then.

but for books I've prefered bits since I got a kindle since I can't rip a physical book. But I refuse to buy an ebook that is priced more than it's physical counterpart.
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Old 06-24-2011, 01:01 AM
Jason Dunn
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Originally Posted by Brad Adrian View Post
Any suggestions for good ripping software?
There are a variety of freeware options on the market, but frankly I think software like this is important enough to pay money for. I use a combination of Slysoft's AnyDVD and CloneDVD Mobile [Affiliate]. It's not cheap, but it works 99.9% of the time, and has a lot of great templates for the iPad, iPhone, and a variety of other devices. Looks like their software is 20% off right now as well.
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