Blu-ray HD vs. DVD Players: Historical Price Comparison

I found this interesting chart on Gizmodo about how Blu-Ray players are basically following the same price trajectory as traditional DVD players:

I don’t have a Blu-ray player myself, but I’m sure glad I didn’t buy one at $300. Hopefully this means that the discs will become dirt-cheap just as quickly. I can wait. 🙂


  1. I NEVER buy new technologies like this until they have hit a commodity price level. I’ve found that the expensive, “early” players tend to have issues and are priced way too high. Frankly, I’m not all that excited about Blueray. I don’t think the quality improvement justifies the price. Once it gets down to a competitive price with DVD players, I’ll jump on board.

  2. It’s the cost requirement of also having a high-end tv that keeps me away even more than the cost of the player.

  3. Interesting. It has seemed like Blu-Ray has followed similar price path as DVDs did. I’d be interested to know when DVD players hit the $100 mark so I can estimate when Bluray will do so. I’ve been holding off on buying a Bluray since I knew the prices would come down and I don’t “need” one now.

  4. Grapes can be sour!

    Don’t justify NOT buying a BluRay player by saying that the quality difference isn’t much; instead acknowledge you don’t care much for the quality difference and move on…

    Whoever can’t notice the “quality” picture difference when using a BluRay disc on a 1080p HDTV is plain blind. The difference is phenomenal when compared to a DVD, and depending on how much of a videophile you are, it may or may not be worth shelling out $300 for a BluRay player. In my case, I have already started building my BluRay collection, so buying a BluRay player earlier this year was a good decision for since our past times involve watching movies in my home theate. I have been thoroughly enjoying the visual benefits of a BluRay disc and that was more important to me. So it justifies spending this money on what makes me happy rather than waiting until the prices drop.

    But again, as I said, it all depends on what your priorties are and where you stand in the financial spectrum.

  5. Blu-Ray tends to look strange to me. Like the movie was done using computer graphics at times. I can’t really explain it but it’s just very different. The picture quality is better but it has a strange look to it to me.

    That being said, I think my first blu-ray purchase will be in the form of a Sony PlayStation 3 😀

  6. bubba legume says:

    I finally got a Blue Ray player just before Christmas. I waited until they were about $150 before taking the leap. The movies are amazing but I agree with the post that says they can look weird. I only have two Blue Ray movies at the moment (hundreds of regular DVDs though), one is Wall-E (to watch with the kids) and the other is Bullit (a personal favorite.) Wall E is perfect. The image quality is amazing. Bullitt looks bizarre. It almost looks like it was filmed on video instead of film. Some scenes are very 2 dimentional because objects in the foreground are not as blurry as they should be so everything looks flat. It is disconcerting. I think for new films it is probably fine since they were designed for that resolution but older films might have this 2D problem.

    Another BlueRay problem in general is the time it takes for the movie to start playing. Some players take 2-3 minutes before they can show anything because they have so much data to read off the disc. I bought an LG which seems fairly fast but since it is the only player I have owned, I have nothing to compare it to. It also supports watching YouTube videos (if you have an ethernet cable to plug it into your network) and streaming from Netflix and one other provider I had never heard of. I haven;t tried the netflix function yet but did a little on You Tube. The streaming was very slow even though my DSL pipe is reasonably fast.

    Finaly comment is that I hate feeling like I am buying a short term format. DVD hardly lasted 10 years (was it 10 years?) Will another format come along in 5 years?

  7. Gloria, that wasn’t very nice.

  8. I saw an LG blu-ray player on yesterday for $100

  9. I think Gloria may be the one with the sour grapes 😉 It would be just as easy to say that the very small difference in quality is important to her.

    PS: on my 42″ flat screen Phillips HD LCD, the difference in quality between DVD and blu-ray is really not much to write home about IMHO. But on my friends home theater projection set-up with a 102″ screen, blu-ray is a must (But when you take into account the 5k he spent on the HD projector and the 10k he spent on the speaker system for his “low end setup”, you are looking at a serious investment to really take advantage of blu ray). I guarantee most people including myself could not discern the difference in sound quality between DVD and blu ray on my $400 home theater setup.

  10. Blu-ray players are now, in my opinion, affordable. Amazon sells the LG BD270 for $113, and Wal Mart sells the Magnavox NB500MG1F for $98. Better players can be found for just a little more.

    The real question is, have you spent a lot of money on your entertainment center already? Compared to the price of a big HDTV or a decent surround sound system, the price of a player is small. If you have those things, it seems foolish not to get Blu-ray. If you don’t you would hardly notice the difference between Blu-ray and DVD.

    Also, forget buying expensive discs. Pay $3 a month extra to Netflix to rent Blu-ray. At that rate, it would take about 6 months of renting to buy one lousy disc.

  11. I am married to a videophile and “semi early adopter.” Too frugal to be a super early adopter.

    We bought a Blue Ray last year for $250-ish. This year we bought the same one for his dad, for $125 (taxes + shipping included). I suppose we should have waited a few more months. Though probably he just “couldn’t wait!” We have a true low-end home projecter set up (with PS3 got Blu Ray). The Blu Ray player was purchased for our large screen TV.

    He’d tell you there is a huge, worthwhile difference. I’d be perfectly happy with VHS, personally. Though I suppose I have come around, with time, to DVD. PErsonal preference will vary! If video stuff is important to you – there are frugal ways to go about it all.

  12. I should add – $130 for a high quality Blu Ray player would probably add up to our cheapest home theater purchase to date. (If we had bought one this year). I agree with Ben.

  13. MakingItWorkNJ says:

    I didn’t care for VHS when that was the only technology around. Then Laser Discs came out, but really, who was going to spend THAT much. Then DVDs came out and I was terribly happy. Now we have Blue Ray. Mind you, as a videophile, I definitely see a difference, but not enough to justify the exorbitant price. (Forget the players, I’m talking about the discs!) No sour grapes here, but I just can’t justify the price, especially when you have inexpensive DVD players that can upconvert to full 1080p that almost looks like blueray (not to mention very inexpensive NEW DVD discs and even cheaper if you’re buying used or doing the old Netflix scheme, if you know what I mean [rent/burn/return/repeat]… 🙂 ).

    No, BlueRay has a whole lot more to go to drop in price. Tube Non-HD TVs still exists in households that can NEVER get Blue Ray’s potential out. Once we have HD TVs in a vast majority of homes, you will see Blue Ray at the same price point DVDs are now. Until then, DVDs are here to stay for the time being and will not be going the way of VHS (YET!). DVDs are still great quality and for the price, it’s very decent.

  14. Got to love technology! I’m a guy who will appreciate good special effects in a movie even if the storyline is crap. When I bought my PS3 a couple years ago, I bought it mainly for the Blu-ray capability. Watching a movie like Shrek on Blu-ray over standard dvd on a high-def tv is how it should be. But it all comes down to what’s important to you.

  15. MakingItWorkNJ says:

    @Cents, I don’t dispute that buying a PS3 is a great way to enjoy Blue Ray, as you not only get to watch Blue Ray movies, you get to play video games (even over the “Internets”, if that’s your thing). However my main thing is the price of the discs. Mind you, I just went over to, and found that certain blockbusters are ON SALE for 16.99, as opposed to the regular price of $35.99 or $39.99. If you are one that wants to buy movies, you want to do it at that price normally, not on sale.

    It’s going to happen though. DVDs were the same way until time went by. Blue Ray is pretty much on it’s way. Now, it’s not to say that I can’t afford a $40 movie…in fact I can afford several at one time. However, I have better things to spend my money on… 🙂

  16. Sir Toddly says:

    On the subject of responses to Gloria’s post: if you can’t see the vastly superior video quality of Bluray over DVD, you obviously aren’t discerning enough to offer any kind of relevant opinion on the subject. (Rick, get a new hobby)

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