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New DVD could end format war

qrios · 2 · 2831

Offline qrios

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AMSTERDAM, Netherlands (Reuters) -- The format war around next generation DVDs may be over before it has begun, thanks to a breakthrough from a British media technology company.

Britain-based New Medium Enterprises (NME) said on Tuesday it had solved a technical production problem that makes it possible to produce a cheap multiple-layer DVD disk containing one film in different, competing formats.

"Current technologies to create multiple layer disks mostly don't work. We've created a technology for mass production of multiple layers that does not suffer from the well known problem of low yields," said NME Chief Technology Officer Eugene Levich.

A low yield means that many DVDs coming off the manufacturing lines are not working and have to be discarded.

The production costs of a multi-layer DVD using the new NME technology are estimated to be around 9 cents, compared with the 6 cents for a standard single-layer play-back DVD, according to Dutch company ODMS, one of the world's leading makers of production lines for optical disks.

This 50 percent cost increase compares favorably with the current generation of multi-layer recordable DVD disks which cost 3 to 5 times as much to produce than a single layer disk, due to low yields.

The technological breakthrough comes one week after three employees at movie studio Warner Bros. filed a patent for the application of multiple formats on a single DVD disc.

"There's no collision between Warner and us. They patent the application, we are patenting the technology. These are complementary patents. I'm glad it's happened. Warner opened our eyes, because it shows they really want to do this and create multi-format, multi-layer disks," Levich said.

Time Warner is the world's largest media company and owns Warner Bros. Former Warner Home Video President James Cardwell joined NME as a board member last month.
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Offline bluegray

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Movies on a DVD are stored at different depths depending on the technology. Blu-Ray discs store information only 0.1 millimeter from the surface while HD-DVD discs store it at 0.6 millimeters.
So where does NME store it, 0.35 mm? ;D

I can see why someone would choose a format with only 0.1mm of protection - more scratches means more sales ;)

Actually - it's more complicated than that:

And from

Hybrid Discs

Here we can find an advantage for Blu-ray, resulting from the new structure of the disc. Since the recording layer for Blu-ray data is only 0.1 mm away from the surface of the disc there is enough space below to integrate a complete 8.5 GB DVD DL disc. JVC has already managed to develop such a single-sided disc by using a for red laser transparent Blu-ray layer.

DVD9/HD-DVD is also possible, but not on a single-sided disc. Cinram, one of the HD-DVD backing companies has developed a hybrid disk with two sides. The first consists of a dual-layer DVD that can store up to 8.4GB of data, while the other side is a HD-DVD capable of storing up to 15GB. Memory-Tech and Toshiba has also developed single-sided hybrid discs that contain a 15GB HD-DVD layer and a 4.7GB DVD layer.
« Last Edit: September 28, 2006, 10:21:22 am by bluegray V »
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