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Topic # 193831 25-Mar-2016 18:48
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Rumour has it there are still a few left on the planet.

 

MrsDarthKermit and I went by where Civic Video Palmy used to be. It was gone. She decided that she'd go join United Video as they still have a branch here.

 

I had a look at Civic Video's website. There are a few shall we say "interesting" statements on that site:

 

  • Civic Video has over 300 stores in Australia and New Zealand, and new stores are opening all the time.
  • The video entertainment industry is a strong and viable industry, representing the core of home entertainment in New Zealand.
  • Civic – NEW ZEALAND With over 50 stores nationwide

(Actually, their own store locator page only lists 21 stores now.)

 

  • Franchise Establishment Costs 
  • Establishment costs vary for each individual site. You will need approximately $250,000 - $300,000 to fully fit-out a new Civic store to corporate design guidelines.

(Would anyone seriously think about investing that kind of dosh into an industry that's fading away?)

 

This isn't a dig at Civic, just an observation of today's video rental market.





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  Reply # 1519972 26-Mar-2016 11:22
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Yes. Our last video store within a reasonable driving distance (a video-ezy) closed two weeks ago. I am now faced with a dilemma, 3 Blu-ray players and HT Receivers capable of full HD video and hi-def audio (DD True Audio, DTS-HD MA, Atmos, etc) and nothing to play on them. I am considering joining Fatso as an alternative, but there is no "let's watch a movie tonight" capability with that service.
Streaming is obviously the way of the future, which is fine if you have a fast enough connection. We are due to get fibre in 2019.




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gzt

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  Reply # 1519975 26-Mar-2016 11:32
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Civic Video has over 300 stores in Australia and New Zealand, and new stores are opening all the time.

Larger stores closing and then reopening as smaller stores? ; ).


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  Reply # 1519976 26-Mar-2016 11:32
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Dingbatt: Yes. Our last video store within a reasonable driving distance (a video-ezy) closed two weeks ago. I am now faced with a dilemma, 3 Blu-ray players and HT Receivers capable of full HD video and hi-def audio (DD True Audio, DTS-HD MA, Atmos, etc) and nothing to play on them. I am considering joining Fatso as an alternative, but there is no "let's watch a movie tonight" capability with that service.
Streaming is obviously the way of the future, which is fine if you have a fast enough connection. We are due to get fibre in 2019.


I find the view that streaming isn't possible in NZ surprising. With 14mb ADSL I have no problems with 1 Netflix and 1 or 2 YouTube streams going at the same time.
The vast majority of broadband people have over 10mb adsl which is sufficient. And for those under that speed the availability of wireless ISPs or RBI mobile broadband means that it's a reality now.
It's only for the extremely remote rural folks who can't get coverage and are stuck with Satellite who are not ok.

All the major ISPs have local CDN caches. So its really not a capacity issue.





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  Reply # 1519977 26-Mar-2016 11:38
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Several of my friends used to work for Blockbuster and Video Ezy. One of them worked for a fella that owned 3 Blockbuster franchises (this was 7-8 years ago), 5 years ago he was down to one which was re-branded to his own brand (and incredibly is still going). This one had moved locations 4 times in 5 years, a second (long closed) one moved 3 times within 2 years. He kept skipping out on his rent. My mate said at one point (when he was the manager) they were making more money from snack food than from rentals. Our local Video Ezy has been for sale for the last few years, it's only saving grace is that its next to a Domino's and they feed them a bit of business. We went there recently (for the first time in several years) and rented a 'recent release'. $6 for overnight, must be returned by 10am... incredible for a movie that's been available to rent for 5-6 months.

 

I do still occasionally pine for the good old days of Video Stores, that is until I step foot in one.


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  Reply # 1519984 26-Mar-2016 11:50
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We still have Video Ezy in Whakatane (and possibly Civic too, but I haven't been down that way in a while). VE runs a prize draw every week and it's common to see 50+ people in there on those nights... but it does seem fairly empty other nights.

 

I do wonder what proportion of rentals are for games; although there are streaming movie options, you can't really stream a game so I'm surprised that they don't promote the game rentals more.


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  Reply # 1519989 26-Mar-2016 12:17
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There's probably still a niche for them, and I thought the quality available from blu-ray compared to rentals would have given them more of a boost than it seems to. But it's a dying industry.

 

Personally, driving to get a disk, having to return it by an early time the next day and (from when I used to rent 7-8 years ago) having every third or fourth disk crap out half way through because of scratches etc was just too irritating.

 

Sky movies more or less killed my renting. Now I'm moving away from that to streaming.

 

If there was a good well-stocked outlet in somewhere I walked past frequently (say the Wellington Railway Station), and I had a few days to return the disk, then I might still use it occasionally - but even that wouldn't be much.


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  Reply # 1519996 26-Mar-2016 12:55
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After spending a fair bit of money on my home theatre, I prefer bluray disks for the picture and sound quality.
We have a United Video store still open in Porirua, that's close enough for us to rent from. But I am worried it will close. I tried Fatso for a while, but I found a few of their disks wouldn't work.
If streaming picture and audio quality improved to match bluray (or better) I would be into that.

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  Reply # 1520272 27-Mar-2016 09:22
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BarTender:
Dingbatt: Yes. Our last video store within a reasonable driving distance (a video-ezy) closed two weeks ago. I am now faced with a dilemma, 3 Blu-ray players and HT Receivers capable of full HD video and hi-def audio (DD True Audio, DTS-HD MA, Atmos, etc) and nothing to play on them. I am considering joining Fatso as an alternative, but there is no "let's watch a movie tonight" capability with that service.
Streaming is obviously the way of the future, which is fine if you have a fast enough connection. We are due to get fibre in 2019.


I find the view that streaming isn't possible in NZ surprising. With 14mb ADSL I have no problems with 1 Netflix and 1 or 2 YouTube streams going at the same time.
The vast majority of broadband people have over 10mb adsl which is sufficient. And for those under that speed the availability of wireless ISPs or RBI mobile broadband means that it's a reality now.
It's only for the extremely remote rural folks who can't get coverage and are stuck with Satellite who are not ok.

All the major ISPs have local CDN caches. So its really not a capacity issue.


Streaming at Blu-ray quality (video and audio)?

Download with an expiry would be my preference.




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  Reply # 1520292 27-Mar-2016 09:51
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Dingbatt: 

Streaming at Blu-ray quality (video and audio)?

Download with an expiry would be my preference.

 

Without looking into detailed bluray file format specs, a few back of the envelope calcs....

 

A typical 2-hr bluray movie could be 30gb. 

 

So, that is 15gb per hour. 

 

A full speed 100mbps connection can download around 40gb / hour.

 

Anything less than 50mbps is pushing it. 

 

Encoding in h265 and stripping unwanted audio could possibly lower bluray quality bandwidth requirements to a little less than 20mbps.  Pushing the upper limits of ADSL but with a bit of buffering maybe all good. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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  Reply # 1520309 27-Mar-2016 11:04
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Yes I think about this sometimes too.

 

I used to live two minutes walk from a collection of shops with a video rental store. It was nice to go for a walk after dinner, and 'because we're there' - pickup a $4 new release movie.

 

If I had a game console I'd probably rent games too.

 

Purchased a cheap Blu-ray player to enjoy higher quality but was quite astounded that the store still prioritized DVD's (because it was the bigger market) and Blu-rays were a fairly small sub-set of titles.

 

I don't have a high end home theater setup (not even mid range) and for my use I find that itunes rentals and netflix streaming is functionally as good as blue ray (perceived resolution) despite the gulf in bitrate.


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  Reply # 1520328 27-Mar-2016 12:11
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There's little doubt IMV that BluRay is way better picture quality, sound etc than streamed.

 

I've actually just suspended my Fatso membership (can't quit on line for some reason and couldn't be bothered to ring them) after realising I had had 4 discs since July last and had not watched one of them yet.

 

To be honest, just watching what is on Sky each night plus what I record from that provides more content than we can actually watch, given that we do not watch TV much more than a couple of hours a day.






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  Reply # 1520340 27-Mar-2016 13:08
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Our local was a blockbuster and I thought it would survive. Not the case it turns out. Owner was a really nice guy too.

 

Was excellent for kids as you could get 3 dvd's for $5 or something like 8 for $10 a week. Could grab an armful of DVD's for entertaining the little one and a couple of recent dvd or blu-ray titles. Guess we are as guilty of it closing as anyone else, most of our watching is done through Netflix and Google Play movies now.





Try Vultr using this link and get us both some credit:

 

http://www.vultr.com/?ref=7033587-3B




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  Reply # 1520408 27-Mar-2016 15:34
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United Video is the only Video Store left in Palmerston North now. There used to be a good indie store called Reel Time, but they closed 2 or 3 years back. The last two Civic Video stores must have both gone fairly recently, as they're both listed in the 2015 Manawatu phone book.

 

We used to have Blockbuster Video, but that entire chain has gone. I think we had a Video Ezy, that's gone also.


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  Reply # 1520487 27-Mar-2016 18:23
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surfisup1000:

Dingbatt: 

Streaming at Blu-ray quality (video and audio)?

Download with an expiry would be my preference.


Without looking into detailed bluray file format specs, a few back of the envelope calcs....


A typical 2-hr bluray movie could be 30gb. 


So, that is 15gb per hour. 


A full speed 100mbps connection can download around 40gb / hour.


Anything less than 50mbps is pushing it. 


Encoding in h265 and stripping unwanted audio could possibly lower bluray quality bandwidth requirements to a little less than 20mbps.  Pushing the upper limits of ADSL but with a bit of buffering maybe all good. 


 



Thank you for your calculations. Please provide details of locally accessible streaming service that can provide this level of quality, and where to get the equipment required to play it.




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