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I'll save you the CONFUSION!
on August 7, 2014
I want to help clarify the difference between the 2 affordable Harry Potter Blu-Ray series, to you all. I've been back and forth on which to buy for the last several months. When searching on Amazon for this set, you'll notice that there are 2 sets, both with all 8 movies, both with the same number of reviews. These are INDEED different, regardless of how similar they are described. Here's why…
I'll start with the blu-ray that has 3 differently aged Harry's on the cover. You'll notice that it is bigger than the other collection being sold. What they don't tell you is that the discs are in 4 separate cases, 2 movies in each case. There are also 11 discs, not just 8. But to be clear on this, the 3 extra discs are just bonus content from the last 3 movies. All of the other movies have the bonus features on the same disc. There is a ton of extra content on each disc. You'll also notice, from a side view picture, the list of movies that are in the box. The first says, "The Philosopher's Stone", rather than "The Sorcerer's Stone". Don't worry, it's not a bootleg copy. It's the English (UK) version of the set. The U.S. version changed the name for marketing purposes and it doesn't affect anything about the set.
Now for the OTHER set being sold:
You'll notice about a $15 price difference in the two. This set, with the cover being of the castle, is smaller and more compact. This is because it has an insert that unfolds with all movies attached to each fold. It's neater, takes up less space, and in my opinion, looks more like the set it should be. However, this set contains only 8 discs (1 for each movie), with NO Bonus Content discs. I know about this set because It is the same that I borrowed from a friend.
So, there's not much of a difference here. I bought the bigger looking box because of the extra content and it was cheaper. The other box looks more like a classic collection but lacks content. Still, any Harry Potter Collection is worth buying. You'll always have an urge to watch it again and again (I watch the series twice a year). The Blu-Ray makes a huge difference in quality over DVD, so if you have a good TV and a Blu-Ray player, you have to go Blu-Ray.
Hope this helped!
**UPDATE May 2016**
The collection of the "3-faces of Harry" cover is currently being sold on Amazon for $62, while the Hogwarts Castle cover is being sold for $60. The "3 faces of Harry" collection has gone up in price, dramatically. I figured they'd both go up in price, seeing that J.K. Rowling's new books are coming to film starting late this year ( Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them). If you haven't seen the Trailer for the movie, check it out on iTunes or YouTube.
AND…RIP Alan Rickman, aka Severus Snape! You will be missed by all Fans.