Monday, January 23, 2012

12 Best Blu Ray Media Stores Review

The 12 Best Blu Ray Media Stores

Best Blu Ray Media Online Stores Part 15: Ranking the 12 Best Stores

How we ranked Blu Ray media stores

After screening a large number of contenders, we reviewed in depth the 12 best stores we identified in the Blu Ray blank media industry. We used the data we collected, previously defined here,  to rank these stores with the following weights: 0.5 to the total inventory, 1 to inventory percentage for our sample list of 89 Blu Ray media,  1 for the percentage of selected archival grade media in stock, 0.5 for sorting and binning, 0.5 for site speed, 2.5 for general pricing, 0.5 for archival grade media pricing, 0.5 for best price matching, 0.25 for the ability to write user reviews, 0.75 for the number of user reviews,  1 for the corrected ResellerRatings rating, and 1 for the corrected Google Shopping rating. This gives us an aggregate of 2.5 for inventory, 1 for site usability, 3.5 for price, 1 for user reviews, and 2 for customer service, for a total of 10. We did some sensitivity analysis on these coefficients as well, and found that our resulting ranking was not very sensitive to small changes in coefficients.          

The rankings

Analyzing the rankings 

The 12 best stores can be neatly arrayed in three tiers. The top tier includes traditional favorites Amazon and NewEgg, along with the very surprising MediaMegaMall, which scores extraordinarily well despite having no user reviews and a short CS track record, because of great inventory and prices. Amazon scores well because it has no weaknesses, although it does not do extraordinarily well anywhere, except in reviews. NewEgg has a great combination of low prices and great CS, but poor inventory, particularly in the archival grade media we selected. MediaMegaMall, the great surprise of our rankings, has excellent inventory and overall prices, but, by some curse of fate, provides poor pricing to the basket of archival grade media we selected.

The next tier, some 15 rating points below, gathers Meritline, TapeOnline,  Beach Audio, and SuperMediaStore, and constitutes, like the first, a comedy of contrasts. Meritline, a traditional online electronic media store, scores decently in service and well in reviews, with mediocre inventory and fair to average pricing.  TapeOnline, another well known digital media site, has outstanding customer service and very good prices, but a remarkably small inventory, and carries almost none of the archival grade media we consider best. Beach Audio, by being average in all arenas, but neither truly poor nor truly good at any criterion, avoids the last tier. SuperMediaStore excells everywhere except in pricing, where it does so badly that we cannot recommend it at this time.

Finally, the trailing tier gathers Rima, RunTechMedia,, BHP Photo Video and Provantage. Rima has excellent customer service, fairly good prices, no user reviews and a narrow inventory. RunTechMedia has a very short track record, very good inventory, and poor to fair prices. has fair customer service, good inventory, and a broad spectrum of prices, but carries a good number of our selected media with excellent prices. B&H Photo has excellent support, but a narrow inventory and poor pricing. Provantage has marketing and support issues, a somewhat small inventory and on average high prices, but does provide some of our selected archival grade media at excellent prices.

Unfortunately, as much as we would want to be able to settle on a single store, at this time we cannot get all we want in one store: none of our contenders gives us a broad inventory, most of our archival grade media, good site usability, good prices, lots of user reviews, and a great customer service record. While we feel strongly that the three highest ranked stores are good enough to be primary long term suppliers for blank Blu Ray media, we also feel that  each has some specific, significant drawback. MediaMegaMall prices our favorite media a bit too high, although its average prices are very good across its whole inventory. NewEgg, with great prices and outstanding service, does not carry most of our favorite media. Amazon does not have good usability for an easy selection of the right media, and often carries higher prices as well.

The right shopping process 

In our opinion, it is best, at this time, to primarily shop for Blu Ray media on MediaMegaMall, NewEgg, Amazon and TapeOnline, but to price check for specific media on Beach Audio, Rima, and Provantage (or use Google Shopping to find best pricing). If MediaMegaMall, NewEgg, Amazon (non-marketplace), TapeOnline, or Rima have good pricing on the media, the ordering decision is clear. If Amazon marketplace, Beach Audio, or Provantage have best pricing, if customer service is not a critical part of the purchase decision, ordering from any of these stores would be appropriate. if, on the other hand, customer service for the purchase is critical, (for instance if delivery time is critical) , then you will have to decide if good pricing is worth some service risk.

  • #1 recommended Blu Ray media store: MediaMegamall. Outstanding inventory, very good prices overall but high prices on our favorite archival grade media, good service, no user reviews. Price check on other stores before ordering.
  • #2 recommended Blu Ray Media store: NewEgg. Outstanding customer service, excellent prices, great user reviews, narrow inventory missing high quality archival grade media. You may need to go to another store if NewEgg does not stock your favorite media.
  • #3 recommended Blu Ray media store: Amazon. Outstanding inventory, great user reviews, prices are only fair, poor site ergonomics make media selection difficult. Avoid marketplace purchase if customer service is important.
  • #4 recommended Blu Ray media store: TapeOnline. Outstanding service, excellent prices, very narrow inventory, no user reviews. You may need to go to another store if TapeOnline does not stock your favorite media.
  • Price checks only: Beach Audio, Rima,, Provantage

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