As we’ve all survived the end of the world, and please forgive the most tenuous link ever, I thought I’d talk about some of the media formats that didn’t survive. For every VHS there’s a Betamax, here’s the winners and losers.
Fought during the 70s, 8-track did have a lot of success. Launched in the late 60’s, it survived for quite a while. But poor sound quality, and it being quite cumbersome to use meant it just couldn’t compete with the cassette. Still has a lot of kitsch value though!
This is probably the one most of us remember, well certainly VHS vs. Betamax. What probably killed Video2000 was the fact that when it was launched, production issues with the players meant that tapes just didn’t play properly from one machine to another. Betamax, although technically superior, lost mainly because of the growing camcorder market. The non-standard video signals it used restricted what it could interconnect with, whereas VHS didn’t.
I’m sure most of us remember the Minidisc; the tough, small, hard-cased disc that could record as well as playback. DAT was the alternative format and gained a lot of traction professionally. For the consumer, recordable CD’s were starting to become available and there was increasing competition from MP3, with early players launched around the late 90’s. The minidisk just couldn’t compete and started disappearing.
Winner: DAT (and technically CD-R)
This was probably the biggest face-off in format history, with pretty much a 50:50 split on uptake. Xbox launched an external drive add-on for the 360, which was the cheapest way into HD-DVD. Mine’s still gathering dust along with the 3 HD-DVDs I bought at the time. Ultimately the decision as to which format won was down to two factors; Sony put a Blu-ray player in the PlayStation 3, and finally, Warner Brothers switched to support Blu-ray, effectively killing HD-DVD.
And finally, let's remember the other fallen formats. LaserDisc, ZIP Drives, Super Audio CD, Cassette, Vinyl (although some DJs might disagree), Punched Cards, ROM Cartridges etc. the list is endless...Tweet
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