Help Center - Movie Formats

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Not all discs will play in all players. It is important to note the format of a movie you order, to be sure you are ordering a format that your player supports.


Standard DVDs are currently the most widely used format. DVDs will play on DVD players, HD DVD players, and Blu-ray players. This is the format of most movies in our database, and the format with which the majority of members are familiar. DVD is not a high-definition format. DVD discs are worth one credit each on our site.


Blu-rays are the leading high-definition format. Blu-rays will only play in Blu-ray players (this includes some gaming systems, such as the Playstation 3). Blu-ray discs offer the highest data capacity of the disc formats, with the most advanced features. Blu-ray discs are more expensive to manufacture than both DVDs and HD DVDs, so they have a higher retail value. Each disc in a Blu-ray set is worth two credits on our site.


HD DVD is a discontinued high-definition format. HD DVD players are no longer manufactured. While HD DVDs have a higher data capacity than DVDs, they are far behind Blu-rays in not only capacity, but also advanced features and studio backing--which caused Blu-ray to win the high def DVD format  "war" . HD DVDs will only play on HD DVD players. HD DVD players will play on XBOX 360 game systems, but only if an optional drive is installed. HD DVDs are worth one credit on our site.


UMD stands for Universal Mini Disc. The miniature discs were developed for use with a PSP (Playstation Portable), a handheld video game system. UMD discs have less storage capacity than the above 3 mentioned formats. UMDs can only be played on PSPs, unless a PSP drive is installed on another device. UMDs are worth one credit on our site, unless they are part of a disc set, in which the content on the DVD or Blu-ray disc is replicated on the UMD. In this case, the UMD is not worth a credit.


VHS tapes are a discontinued home video format not available for swapping through our official system. VHS tapes can only be played on a VCR. VHS tapes have the lowest capacity, resolution, and audio quality of the formats listed. While VHS tapes cannot be swapped through our official system, members are welcome to swap VHS tapes in the VHS/Laserdisc Bazaar. As stated in the "Rules for Swapping in the VHS Bazaar" thread, VHS tapes can be swapped for no more than one credit per tape. 

Blu-ray, HD DVD, and UMD database listings will have the respective format listed in the title, as well as on the format line on the movie's details page.

If you order a format that your player will not support, you should mark the item 'Received' normally (provided that the item matches the listing on your screen exactly), then re-post the item on your DVD Tower. When you have successfully mailed the item to the next requestor, you will receive the appropriate credit.

If you receive a DVD that is not in the format you ordered (double check the listing on your account to confirm this), you should choose 'Yes, but a Problem' when confirming that the DVD has been received. Then, select 'Wrong DVD' from the options. Remember to describe the problem on the following survey page. *Do not mark the item as 'Wrong DVD' if the DVD matches the listing.* Feel free to contact us from the Feedback page if you are unsure of how to mark your transaction.


Related Links

There is a problem with a DVD I received!
A requestor says there is a problem with a DVD I sent!
Can I play Blu-ray discs or HD-DVD discs in a DVD player?