Tuesday, January 7, 2014

The longest five-second wait

I love my Australian BluRay player.


Because it's a region-free BluRay player, meaning it will play DVDs or BluRays from anywhere in the world. Actually, I think only the DVDs are guaranteed to play, but I have yet to discover a BluRay I bought in the U.S. that would not work on it. I love this because it means people can still send me DVDs and BluRays from the U.S. as gifts, even though I can no longer return the favor.

But I also hate my Australian BluRay player.


Because it needs a minute to think.

It actually only needs about five seconds, but that feels like a minute when I'm waiting for the five seconds to pass.

Let me explain.

One of the most common activities related to a DVD or BluRay player, without which you simply cannot use it, is inserting and ejecting discs. My player has to do a quick systems check every time it gets a request to complete this commonplace action. Or so it would seem, since it can take up to five seconds to respond.

Opening the tray usually works on the first push of the button, or at least on a second immediate push after the first push. Closing the tray, though, can take up to five seconds, no matter how often you push the button during those five seconds.

I don't know why this is, it just is.

You'd think I would just learn, and count to five in my head before trying to close the tray again. But I can't. I want immediate closure. I don't want to stand there like an idiot saying "one one thousand, two one thousand" in my head. I just want the damn door to close when I ask it to.

I also apparently have boundless optimism that this time it will perform correctly. It never does.

If I had an explanation for this lethargy it might be simpler. Instead, it just seems like my player is doing the electronic equivalent of bending over with its hands on its knees, panting. "Just give me a sec," it says, holding up a finger.

A similar thing happens when you are unpausing the movie. It goes into a screen saver mode after about 10 seconds, which seems a bit extreme, but that's okay. There may be a setting I can adjust on that. So the first time you click the play button to start things up again, all it does is dismiss the screen saver mode.

I don't know what's happening during the second time you press play, but it always takes a third press to get the movie started again.

Oh well. I guess it's a small price to pay to be able to watch the 150 or so DVDs I brought with me from the U.S.

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