It looked like the streaming set-top box Vudu was struggling for a while there. But now the company has added scads of HD movies. Bragging that there are 1100 HD choices now available, the Vudu service is really starting to become worthwhile. We've been testing the $300 box for the past few months, and can vouch for its impressive resurgence.
Last month, Vudu started offering its 1080p/24 HDX movies, which to our eyes look every bit as good as Blu-ray (although they take 4 hours to download on a fast connection). There are about 150 titles now available in this high-rez format. The company's regular 1100+ 1080i HD movies start streaming right away and look almost as good. We also love the near-perfect RF remote, fitting the hand better than any we've ever used. (Update: the company now says all 1100 of those movies will be in that gorgeous HDX format. Whoa!)
Now Best Buy is offering a $200 voucher for Vudu movies when you purchase the $300 box, sweetening a deal that's not the greatest value at $6 for most newer HD and HDX movies. Keep an eye on Vudu — while we're wondering if its catalog really is bigger than Blu-ray, still, it's hard to beat that sharp HDX quality and the way you can just download those flicks without wasting any energy. Worth a look.