The HD format war may be over, but don't tell Corel. The company's WinDVD 9 software plays both Blu-ray and the now-defunct HD DVD format--perfect for those few Windows PCs with HD combo drives, such as the HP Pavilion Slimline S3330f. The software supports the full range of features for both formats, including their next-gen audio soundtracks (Dolby TrueHD and DTS HD), Blu-ray Profile 1.1 (picture-in-picture commentaries), and--while it lasts--Web-enabled "In Movie Experience" features on HD DVDs.
WinDVD 9 is available Tuesday in three versions. The entry-level version ($50) handles standard DVD movies, along with QuickTime and DivX files. WinDVD 9 Plus ($80) adds better surround audio support and Corel's "All2HD" upscaling, which aims to sharpen detail on low-resolution video. It also includes the ability to play back AVCHD files--ideal for anybody with an HD camcorder. The $100 version of the software is the one you want for playing Blu-ray or HD DVD movies. Owners of WinDVD 6, 7, or 8 can upgrade to that flagship version of the software for just $60.