Author Topic: Cost comparison: Discs vs. Streaming  (Read 527 times)

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Offline daniel1948

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Cost comparison: Discs vs. Streaming
« on: March 30, 2017, 07:24:54 PM »
I decided to do a cost comparison: I pay $21.73 per month ($260/year) for NetFlix three-at-a-time discs by mail. That gets me the BluRay when a movie is available on BluRay. I watch with a high-def projector onto a screen that's 5 1/2 feet wide, so maybe around 6 feet diagonal for a widescreen movie. In 2015 I rented 84 movies. (I'm not using 2016 because I was home more on account of my broken arm and cancelled trips, so watched more movies.) This comes out to around $3.10 per movie. I looked up the cost to rent the most recent 3 movies on my NetFlix queue from Amazon streaming. Dr. Strange is $6, Arrival is $5, and Moana is not even available to stream on Amazon. So-called High-Def streaming is lower resolution than DVD and significantly lower resolution than BluRay, which may not be noticeable watching on a tablet, but is very noticeable on a big screen.

So Amazon streaming charges about double for significantly lower resolution compared to renting discs from NetFlix. Of course, with streaming there's no waiting, and you can watch on your tablet or phone if you want to watch a movie on a tiny screen. I do have Amazon Prime, which offers thousands of movies that nobody would ever want to watch, and about six movies you'd actually want to see.

Conclusion: Streaming is a bad deal.

Note: I used to have NetFlix streaming, before it went all to hell and started re-buffering for about a minute after each 30 seconds of playing. There were a few old TV shows I enjoyed watching, but like Amazon, most of what was offered under the subscription was crap. As an added benefit, now that I no longer stream through the Blu-Ray player, it's disconnected from the internet, and Blu-Ray discs no longer insist on connecting to the movie company's web site, something that always annoyed the hell out of me.
Daniel
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Online Noisy Rhysling

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Re: Cost comparison: Discs vs. Streaming
« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2017, 07:50:45 PM »
I have DVDs I bought in the '90s, watching them about once a year. So the cost for that movie is down below $2/viewing. Some I watch more often, even cheaper. If I liked a movie in the theater I'll buy it. I'm not averse to buying used, after a careful inspection.

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Re: Cost comparison: Discs vs. Streaming
« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2017, 08:02:43 PM »
Conclusion: Streaming is a bad deal.


Streaming is not about price or quality, it's about convenience.
Amend and resubmit.

Offline Caffiene

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Re: Cost comparison: Discs vs. Streaming
« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2017, 08:57:49 PM »
So-called High-Def streaming is lower resolution than DVD and significantly lower resolution than BluRay

Thats not resolution. Thats bit rate and compression, which are determined by your internet connection.
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Online 2397

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Re: Cost comparison: Discs vs. Streaming
« Reply #4 on: March 30, 2017, 09:25:18 PM »
Streaming is not about price or quality, it's about convenience.

And about geoblocking.

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Re: Cost comparison: Discs vs. Streaming
« Reply #5 on: March 30, 2017, 09:32:09 PM »
If you don't mind waiting for first run movies. Try your library. I can get a lot of movies for free. They don't have everything but good enough for me and the Wife.
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Offline daniel1948

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Re: Cost comparison: Discs vs. Streaming
« Reply #6 on: March 30, 2017, 09:43:16 PM »
So-called High-Def streaming is lower resolution than DVD and significantly lower resolution than BluRay

Thats not resolution. Thats bit rate and compression, which are determined by your internet connection.

I have an extremely fast cable internet connection. The only way to get anything faster in my location would be to pay, probably many thousands of dollars, for fiber optic. And of course, if the bottleneck is the speed the streaming company servers are willing to provide, then my point remains: They are not offering an economical service.

I'm not saying that it would be impossible for streaming to rival DVD or BluRay. I'm saying that I cannot get such service today.
Daniel
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Offline Caffiene

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Re: Cost comparison: Discs vs. Streaming
« Reply #7 on: March 30, 2017, 10:32:09 PM »
I have an extremely fast cable internet connection. The only way to get anything faster in my location would be to pay, probably many thousands of dollars, for fiber optic. And of course, if the bottleneck is the speed the streaming company servers are willing to provide, then my point remains: They are not offering an economical service.

A minute of buffering for 30 seconds of stream suggests a connection speed problem other than just the normal server PoP interconnect rate.
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Offline Desert Fox

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Re: Cost comparison: Discs vs. Streaming
« Reply #8 on: March 31, 2017, 12:48:09 AM »
I have DVDs I bought in the '90s, watching them about once a year. So the cost for that movie is down below $2/viewing. Some I watch more often, even cheaper. If I liked a movie in the theater I'll buy it. I'm not averse to buying used, after a careful inspection.

The way you treat movies is similar to mine. Often I can get movies for a $2 or so at pawnshops. I am still in the process of trying to replace some old movies I have on tape.
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Online Andrew Clunn

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Re: Cost comparison: Discs vs. Streaming
« Reply #9 on: March 31, 2017, 06:27:01 AM »
If you don't mind waiting for first run movies. Try your library. I can get a lot of movies for free. They don't have everything but good enough for me and the Wife.

Have you ever tried a kid's movie from the library?  It makes you hate other parents.
I agree with Clunn, which makes me feel all weird inside.

Online Noisy Rhysling

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Re: Cost comparison: Discs vs. Streaming
« Reply #10 on: March 31, 2017, 07:02:10 AM »
I have DVDs I bought in the '90s, watching them about once a year. So the cost for that movie is down below $2/viewing. Some I watch more often, even cheaper. If I liked a movie in the theater I'll buy it. I'm not averse to buying used, after a careful inspection.

The way you treat movies is similar to mine. Often I can get movies for a $2 or so at pawnshops. I am still in the process of trying to replace some old movies I have on tape.
That's less than a venti Caramel Machiatto.  ;)

Online xenu

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Re: Cost comparison: Discs vs. Streaming
« Reply #11 on: March 31, 2017, 07:04:25 AM »
If you don't mind waiting for first run movies. Try your library. I can get a lot of movies for free. They don't have everything but good enough for me and the Wife.

Have you ever tried a kid's movie from the library?  It makes you hate other parents.

No but I can see how that would be a pain in the ass. Can you reserve movie where you are? That works for me. Where I live I can also put them on vacation hold so I don't lose my place. Then when I have time to watch the movie I take it off VC hold. Works most of the time.
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Online Noisy Rhysling

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Re: Cost comparison: Discs vs. Streaming
« Reply #12 on: March 31, 2017, 08:01:59 AM »
I remember this "Rainbow Brite" VHS that tragically, quite tragically, broke after a few thousand repetitions. You can't do that with streaming.

Offline daniel1948

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Re: Cost comparison: Discs vs. Streaming
« Reply #13 on: March 31, 2017, 10:43:02 AM »
I have an extremely fast cable internet connection. The only way to get anything faster in my location would be to pay, probably many thousands of dollars, for fiber optic. And of course, if the bottleneck is the speed the streaming company servers are willing to provide, then my point remains: They are not offering an economical service.

A minute of buffering for 30 seconds of stream suggests a connection speed problem other than just the normal server PoP interconnect rate.

When NetFlix was rebuffering long and repeatedly, Amazon Prime played with no issues. My connection to my ISP was excellent. Maybe my ISP was severely throttling NetFlix, or maybe NetFlix had taken on too many subscribers for its servers serving my area. The cause of the slowdown was irrelevant. What was relevant was that I could not watch NetFlix but I could watch Amazon Prime. So I canceled my NetFlix streaming after a full month of being unable to watch it.

I'm aware that things change, and maybe NetFlix would work for me now. But at $120 a year (HD) I doubt NetFlix actually has anything I'd particularly want to watch, considering that I already get plenty of movies in a medium that is considerably better than streaming. (I.e., BluRay discs.)

I spend more time reading books than watching any kind of video, even if you include the nature videos I watch when my cardio happens to be walking or jogging on the treadmill.
Daniel
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Offline moj

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Re: Cost comparison: Discs vs. Streaming
« Reply #14 on: March 31, 2017, 01:32:04 PM »
Steaming is a bad deal compared to what? Creating your own DVD library? I used to have one of those about after moving it a few times realized I hadn't watched 97% of the DVD's I owned since the last time I moved and gave them all away. For me the saving of space is more important than being able to watch something I've already seen anytime I want. With our cable service DVR and my netflix can watch most of what I want any time or if I have to order a DVD on netflix and wait a few days can do that too. That said I still do have a few DVD's I've gotten over the past few years but it's more about family giving me stuff for xmas and running out of ideas. There are very few DVD's I'd buy any more.
« Last Edit: March 31, 2017, 02:08:06 PM by moj »