The Key Features to Look for When Purchasing DVDs

Like if this guide is helpful
The Key Features to Look for When Purchasing DVDs

When consumers are purchasing DVDs, there are a lot of options to select from. Whether it is a special edition box set of a television show, or a disc of a buyer’s favourite movie loaded with lots of bonus features, DVDs may vary in price, formats, and additional extras a buyer may be interested in.

True movie connoisseurs and hard core film buffs may even want to get more than one copy of their favourite films since DVDs may be released with different packaging or features, as well as older movies that get re-released after several years with added extras that may convince a buyer that already owns the movie to purchase another copy. A series of films or seasons of a television show may be purchased together at an affordable price in a large box set, or movie sequels may be bought that way too. Special packaging and bonus features are just a couple of the features that engages movie lovers, among many others.

What to Consider Before Purchasing DVDs

Before a buyer purchases DVDs with special features, the buyer should know exactly what format is needed, such as standard DVD, Blu-Ray, or digital copies of movies. Additionally, setting a budget can help, because some fancier editions of movies may be more costly than more basic versions. DVDs that offer more items such as special packaging or souvenirs of the film are going to cost more, especially if they came out a few years ago and are now collectible or hard to find items.

Types of Key Features for DVD Buyers to Look For

When it comes to buying DVDs, there are a multitude of various editions, formats, and features to choose from. For buyers that only want one copy of a movie, they may purchase one special edition that has all of the features necessary, or may only purchase a version that has the basic essentials. It is really up to the buyer’s individual interest when it comes to which DVDs to purchase.

Bonus Features/Two Disc Editions

Bonus features are one of the best components of a DVD filled with extras. Bonus features can range anywhere from outtakes and bloopers, to deleted scenes, to commentary and interviews with the actors and director. There may even be a behind the scenes segment.

Some DVDs that have a lot of special features may include a second disc. The second disc may have a different version of the movie, or even more features such as games, trailers, music videos, and featurettes depicting the making of the movie, costume and makeup design, or special effects information.

Special Packaging/Collectible Items

Special packaging is another cool key feature to look for when buying DVDs. Sometimes when a movie is released there is a second version that comes in special packaging that may only be for a limited time only, such as when the movie "Grease" was re-released with a small leather jacket covering the DVD, or copies of "A Nightmare Before Christmas" that are plastic and shaped like Jack Skellington’s head.

Neat, unique packaging is a treat for movie fans, and some packaging may even include special items, such as figures, stuffed toys, or other memorabilia such as a small prop from the film itself, collectible movie trading cards, or a poster. These special items are generally put out upon the DVD release of a new movie, or to commemorate a re-release of a film.

Blu-Ray Editions/Combination Packs

With the popularity of the Blu-Ray format, there used to be separate DVDs for standard DVD format and for Blu-Ray playability, but now it is becoming more standard for combination packs to be released, which come with a traditional DVD as well as a Blu-Ray edition of a film. Blu-Ray editions can only be played on Blu-Ray players, but DVDs can be played on any standard DVD player as well as computers and some game systems, such as the Wii.

For consumers that have the option to play both type of movie, the combination Blu-Ray/DVD packs are a good buy because for the price that is paid, the buyer receives two copies of the same movie, just in two different types of formats.

Digital Copies

Some DVDs come with another cool feature these days: a digital copy of the film. A digital copy is a copy of the movie that can be downloaded onto a computer, and streamed through other electronic, portable devices such as a Kindle or other electronic reading device, iPad, iPhone, or iPod. It allows the buyer some added flexibility when it comes to viewing the movie. This also makes it easier to view the movie on the go.

Some DVD sets come with a digital copy at no added cost, and this is becoming more of a norm for consumers that buy DVDs. A special edition set that comes with a standard DVD edition, Blu-Ray copy, as well as a digital copy of a movie makes for a perfect combination set that has everything the movie lover could desire. This is a great feature to look for when buying a DVD, especially for a buyer that enjoys watching movies on his or her portable devices.

Extended Versions

A bonus feature that true fans of a movie can appreciate is the extended or alternate version of a film. Sometimes there are two different endings of a film shot, for instance, and the alternate edition may provide both of those endings. Sometimes the movie is cut differently for release in the theatres, so the DVD could provide viewers with the uncut version of the film in its entirety, including bonus content or deleted scenes, or possibly even an unrated version of a movie that received a more strict rating for theatre viewing.

Box Sets

Box sets can come bearing seasons of a television show, movies of the same genre that are related somehow, sequels of a movie series, or an entire series in one set, such as the "Harry Potter Wizard’s Collection," which houses all seven movies of the series complete with bonus footage and special features for the Potter fan.

Box sets are a great buy because the consumer is getting more bang for his buck; more movies for less than the amount of purchasing them individually. A trilogy of films purchased together in one box set, or a box of one director’s work, also makes a great gift for another movie lover. Typically, DVD box sets contain a range of features that the buyer does not receive on other editions of the film, and this could provide more of a reason to buy the movies in a boxed edition. Also, the packaging is usually lovely or more interesting than standard DVD packaging.

How to Purchase DVDs With Great Features on eBay

For consumers looking for DVDs with special features on eBay, you really need to know what movie you are looking for. If you know what film or even what genre you are shopping in, it can make searching a lot easier. Do a general search for a movie, such as "Pulp Fiction". All of the different editions for the film comes up, or you should search more specific terms such as "Pulp Fiction" special edition to see what comes up. Check to make sure the DVD is in the format you need it to be, whether it is DVD standard format or Blu-Ray format.

Buy DVDs from merchants that are Top-Rated Sellers, and if the DVD is used, find out what condition it is in before your purchase to ensure it is not scratched or otherwise flawed. Buy more than one movie from the same seller and see if they can be bundled and shipped together to save shipping costs, and make sure the seller you buy DVDs from has a lot of high ratings and good feedback from other buyers. Movies with special features, digital copies, bonus discs, and extended editions can be a lot of fun for a movie lover, and make great presents for other movie buffs that you know.


Buying DVDs is a lot of fun, and collecting different editions of a well loved film can be an exciting hobby for a big movie fan. When movies are released, they often come with fun features and extras that a fan loves, such as added discs, music from the movie, or featurettes that are a lot of fun to watch, such as behind the scenes extras and interviews with the cast and crew. Buying DVDS on eBay can be an affordable way for a movie fan to collect all of the special editions, as well as get back editions or collectibles that he or she may have missed out on at the time of the release.

Digital copies make it a lot of fun to take movies on the go, and watch them on an iPod, Kindle, or other supported device, and allows the buyer to get even more out of their favourite films. Finding out about the making of a film, seeing deleted scenes and collecting fun memorabilia and collectibles is a perfect hobby for people of all ages that enjoy movies.

Have something to share? Create your own guide... Write a guide
Explore more guides