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Matt's Guide To Building A Great DVD Collection


This week as my spool I thought I’d talk about how to make a good DVD collection. It must sound like one of those folk from the Lifestyle Channel.


If you’re still buying VHS tapes then get with the times. You’ll soon be struggling to find a video player to watch them on. VHS tapes degrade in quality over time but DVD’s always hold up. So if you’re looking to put together a nice collection of movies at home to impress, then DVD’s are a must.


So where now from here? Well here’s the tips I have to offer…


1. Look For A Bargain

When some DVDs come out, the cost upwards of $35. Yet if you wait a few months, you can get them for half that price. You also have to know which shops to go to. In Brisbane, I always favour JB’s Hi-Fi over anywhere else. Their range in second to none and the prices can’t be beat. So if you can get the films you want much cheaper, that collection is going to be put together much quicker!


2. Never Buy In Bulk

I always find that you don’t appreciate DVDs when you buy a lot of them at once. You don’t get a chance to watch them all properly and there’s not a sense of appreciation with each purchase. So as rule, I’ll never usually buy more than 2 at any time over say a month period. By spreading them out too you get can get more satisfaction from purchasing them!


3. Beware Of Impulse

New releases can always sucker you in. You see thousands of copies of the shelf, supported by a mega-blitz of advertising and think it’s a must have. I always find that unless you adore the film and know your opinion won’t change, don’t rush in. Wait a few weeks and see if you’ve still got the urge to buy it. In most cases you’ll find you won’t but if you do, there’ll still be plenty of copies left, trust me.


4. Never Buy An Unseen Movie

A bad mistake to fall victim too. Sometimes you hear all the hype and think something’s good only to find it’s not. There’s nothing worse that wasting all that money to have a DVD that’ll now sit on your shelf gathering dust. So I always recommend to try before you buy. If you’re thinking of buying it, rent it from your video store first to make sure. The extra few bucks will be worth it.


5. Look For Special Features

Sometimes I’ll be sitting on the fence about whether to buy a DVD or not. What always decides the matter for me are the special features. Always look at the back cover before buying to see what you’re getting. A DVD with nothing on it but the film and a trailer sometimes isn’t worth having. There are some DVDs today which have multiple discs filled with amazing behind-the-scenes documentaries, lots of interesting commentary and other cool stuff. These DVDs can provide twice as much entertainment as other so make sure to always check.


6. Think Of Longevity

It’s a fact that some films do not age well. They’re a big smash hit at first but then with each subsequent viewing, they become less and less interesting. When buying a DVD, ask yourself the question whether you could see yourself watching the film more than once. If not, put it back on shelf as it’s not worth it. I always like recommending arthouse films as a result of this rule. Classic cult films like Pulp Fiction, The Usual Suspects, The Shawshank Redemption, The Big Lebowski and Clerks are great to have in the collection when friends drop buy expectedly looking for something to watch.


7. Aim For A Balanced Mix

A good DVD collection should have a wide assortment of styles and genres. Don’t just buy all action or all comedy or all drama. We’re usually in a different mood everyday if looking for something to watch to pass the boredom, it’s nice to have a wide range to select from.


8. Use Ebay To Broaden Your Market

If you’ve got a multi-region DVD player (one that can play DVDs from all over the world as opposed to just Australia), then Ebay is your window to the world. At www.ebay.com, you can bid on DVDs which have been released in other countries well before you’ll find them here in Australia. There are also some DVDs which are never released in Australia and one of my own personal favourites, The Ice Storm, comes to mind. So if you can’t find something here in Oz, use Ebay to search the world.