CriticalDance Forum

DVDs replacing videotapes?
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Author:  Amy Reusch [ Wed Jul 14, 2004 6:57 pm ]
Post subject:  DVDs replacing videotapes?

Not sure if this is the proper forum, but...

Are DVDs replacing videotapes in publicity materials and in professional archival use? Or are there too many compatibility issues still?

It seems like DVD would be the ideal promo format, what with it's menu options and inexpensive shipping costs... but perhaps DVD players aren't widespread enough in the dance world yet? It seems like any artistic director with the money to commission choreography (or presenter to book a company) would have a DVD player at their disposal somewhere... although perhaps not every "young audiences" school venue would...

Or are DVDs great for promos but for working in the studio, videotapes are still dominant? Is anyone using DVD as rehearsal video?

Author:  salzberg [ Thu Jul 15, 2004 4:02 am ]
Post subject:  Re: DVDs replacing videotapes?

I haven't seen DVDs in the studio yet, but it would certainly make life easier.

Author:  Amy Reusch [ Thu Jul 15, 2004 8:00 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: DVDs replacing videotapes?

As I look into this, I discover some problems for the dance world...

If I understand what I'm reading...
It seems only "pressed" or "replicated" DVDs (like the typical hollywood movie) are always compatible with all the DVD players; whereas "duplicated" recordable disks (if you require quantities of 50 or less, you're probably dealing with duplicated rather than replicated disks)... at best seem to be compatible with roughly 85% of existing DVD players.

This is kind of a problem, don't you think?

Also, there seems to be an issue with black levels... where detail in dark areas tends to be lost (anyone ever seen a wide shot of dancers in black tights against a black curtain on a black marley....? that isn't brightly lit... ? With a little luck, perhaps this design concept has gone out of style, but I'm not putting any money on it) It's not that it's impossible to record this kind of detail onto DVD, but rather that different machines play back the levels differently.

I still think DVD is a great promo format, but it looks like the accompanying press material would have to make it clear that a VHS is available if the DVD doesn't play back properly? Sounds lame, doesn't it? Is anyone likely to wait for the videotape?

Author:  Azlan [ Thu Jul 15, 2004 10:54 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: DVDs replacing videotapes?

I'm seeing choreographers and artistic directors use DVDs to promote their works, and presenters popping them into their computers to view and fastforward.

However, videotapes seem to be common still, especially among dancers, as companies still shoot on analog videotape instead of using digital motion cameras.

On a related tangent, I do however see more and more photographers making the switch to digital cameras with stunning effect.

And, um, should we move this to the Backstage forum?

<small>[ 16 July 2004, 01:42 PM: Message edited by: Azlan ]</small>

Author:  Stuart Sweeney [ Fri Jul 16, 2004 12:17 am ]
Post subject:  Re: DVDs replacing videotapes?

I am also being handed DVDs rather than videos by PR people these days. The 2004 Dance umbrella festival may have a CD of clips in the Festival programme booklet.

This marketing/archival topic could fit in either of the two forums mentioned by Azlan. However, this one does tend to concentrate on finance, recruitment and building, whereas "Backstage" has more technical material. So, on balance, this topic would be better in "Backstage" in my view.

I'll move it and close this one. Look for the link at top left for the continuing topic.

<small>[ 16 July 2004, 02:17 AM: Message edited by: Stuart Sweeney ]</small>

Author:  salzberg [ Fri Jul 16, 2004 5:28 am ]
Post subject:  Re: DVDs replacing videotapes?

The compatibility issues will fade; remember that we faced the same problem when CD burners first came into vogue.

it looks like the accompanying press material would have to make it clear that a VHS is available if the DVD doesn't play back properly?
(Sigh) I'd settle for people saying, "Available on DVD and VHS," rather than, "DVD and video." DVD, of course, is a video format.

Author:  David [ Fri Jul 16, 2004 8:23 am ]
Post subject:  Re: DVDs replacing videotapes?

There is another major issue with using DVD for archiving rather than videotape.

The worst that's usually likely to happen to a video tape is that is gets caught in the machine or snaps. In either case most of it can be saved.

If a DVD gets damaged you are much more likely to have lost everything.

I guess there isn't an ideal solution other than keeping multiple copies in multiple formats.

Author:  Amy Reusch [ Mon Jul 19, 2004 8:08 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: DVDs replacing videotapes?

I hope the compatibility issue fades... my impression was that now that the manufacturers of the recording machines also own the companies that produce the software (Hollywood movies), they weren't interested in duplication being easy...

Azlan & Stuart, the DVDs you've seen, are they being produced by companies that could handle $1000 for replication costs as reasonable for their budget? It seems like more than most small companies would consider that beyond them... (or have the original recording & editing costs gone down so much that they can now shift that money over to distribution?) [Now we're back in finance issues]

<small>[ 20 July 2004, 09:15 PM: Message edited by: Eye4dance ]</small>

Author:  Amy Reusch [ Mon Oct 04, 2004 7:27 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: DVDs replacing videotapes?

Just an update to this...

At a wedding recently, I was chatting with the artistic director of a medium sized internationally touring AGMA company and asked if they were distributing on DVDs or videotape.... and was told that they didn't want to hear anything about videotape anymore... they did it all on DVD; making them inhouse. I asked about the compatibility problems I had heard about, whether they'd ever been told a DVD was having trouble playing back... and was told they had no trouble... only in certain European countries they had to be sure it was the right "zone"... I wondered if this meant the old PAL/Secam stuff, but was told it was something different. Unfortunately, the conversation was interrupted before I could get that explained. I won't name the company or director since I missed the chance to ask permission to do so.

Author:  jazzman25 [ Mon Oct 04, 2004 11:09 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: DVDs replacing videotapes?

We send out our demos on CD format for promotion of the dance company. In the last 3 years about 200 copies at 50 cents for CD and 55 cents mailing. Includes print ready photos and PDF brochures. The Videotape cannot provide this lo cost and flexible medium. DVD is more expensive to buy and duplicate and not all computers have DVD players yet. The CD is still the choice for promotion.

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