Laserdisks harken back to the days of VHS and Betamax. The Laser Disks were far superior in terms of quality and picture resolution, even more so than beta, however the actual laser disks, which were about the size of a 33rpm record, did not have a large data capacity. As a result people had to quite literally take them out of the player and flip sides in the middle of a film, or for longer films, insert anywhere from one to four seperate disks, flipping the sides of each disk when the time came.
I think because of the of the cost of the players and the disks and the constant flipping and switching disks in order to view one movie, the medium became unpopular despite it's quality and mostly fell by the wayside. However, with the advent of the DVD, the medium as made the most modest of resurgences, in that people who are now accustomed to watching digital quality films find that some films which have never been released on DVD were in fact released on LaserDisk at one time. As a result some die hards will return to LaserDisk to watch certain films, even though by todays' standards, the quality is sub-par.
Anyone remember the RCA "videodisc" system that used an actual stylus to play the film? The discs were sealed in a plastic case the size of an LP...really weird system. I'll have to see if I can find anything about it online.
It was short-lived (for obvious reasons, probably), very early 80's I'm guessing. Used to see ads in Video magazine.
Yeah, there's a whole new generation of people who never used or listened to a vynil record; my sister in law is a teacher, and the kids didn't know what an LP was... they now associate it to old gramophon style technology :p
Only art medium that has preserved vynil is the DJs and their thin acetates.
Probably the only thing that keeps vynil-pressing studios alive nowadays.
I saw a couple of laserdiscs a few times, at a friend's house. They were bulky, but they were amazing technology! I could look at those giant mirrored discs for minutes, so shiny... and beautiful... all the colors of the rainbow... drool...