What the Tech: Streaming vs. DVDs - which is the better movie experience?
If you’re a serious movie buff, you may have wondered how streaming compares to good old-fashioned DVDs.
LANSING, Mich. (WILX) - If you’ve watched a movie in the last few weeks, you probably streamed it over Netflix, Hulu or Amazon Prime. That may be fine for most people, but there’s something even better, and it may be something you haven’t used in quite a while.
Netflix and Amazon are great. Millions of people subscribe to them. If you’re a serious movie buff, you may have wondered how streaming compares to good old-fashioned DVDs.
Streaming is convenient but there’s a huge trade-off in quality. With a basic Netflix subscription, the movies you watch are not High Definition. To get full HD on Netflix a subscription is $15.50 a month, and it’s $20 a month for 4k and UHD. Even with the more expensive subscription, there’s a limited selection of 4k movies.
You’ll also need a 4K TV or streaming device and if it’s connected over WiFi, the internet speed may not be fast enough for full HD. Smaller TVs will be fine with standard HD, but you’ll notice a big difference if your television is 50 inches or larger.
BluRay DVDs on the other hand are all in full HD. BluRay DVD players are under $100. No internet is required. DVD players also offer up to 7.1 surround sound for an even better home theater experience. DVDs also have bonus features you won’t get on Netflix or Amazon streaming.
Where do you find DVDs these days? There are Red Box rental kiosks everywhere and Netflix still has a DVD rental program that delivers to your home. You’ll find a better selection of new movies on DVD too.
The next reason is psychological. How many times have you spent a lot of time just flipping through Netflix or Amazon for over an hour trying to find something to watch? Too many choices. Renting a DVD is like an investment. You feel compelled to watch it right away. If you’re a real movie and you’re only streaming, you’re missing the big picture.
At last count, Netflix has roughly 209 million paid memberships to its streaming service, but only 2 million or so customers to its DVD rental program.
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