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Blu-ray News

JVC Develops Blu-ray/DVD Combo Disc Technology

Posted December 24, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin

Victor Company of Japan, Ltd. (JVC) today announced that it has developed the world's first Blu-ray/DVD combo disc technology, which opens the way for the emergence of video releases containing content in both Blu-ray and DVD formats on a single disc. The new combo disc, which has a total storage capacity of 33.5GB (25GB BD-ROM, 8.5GB DVD), uses a triple layer structure made possible by the development of a proprietary high-performance reflective film that reflects the blue laser used for Blu-ray, but is transparent to the red laser used for DVDs.

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Bandai Visual Joins the Blu-ray Disc Association

Posted December 21, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin
Bandai Visual

The Blu-ray Disc Association (BDA) today announced that Bandai Visual, a leading Japanese animation (Anime) content developer, has joined the consortium. In Japan, Bandai Visual is a pioneer of animation software and widely held by viewers as a high-quality content creator. Currently, the animation movie industry is working to create a new library of high-definition content, for which the Blu-ray Disc format will provide the ideal solution.

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Disney and Buena Vista to Support Blu-ray Disc Format

Posted December 8, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin
Walt Disney Pictures

The Walt Disney Company and Buena Vista Home Entertainment (BVHE) today announced their support for the Blu-ray Disc format, and said they will make a wide range of new releases and catalog titles available next year when Blu-ray hardware launches in the North America and Japan. Disney also announced that it will become a member of the Board of Directors of the Blu- ray Disc Association (BDA).

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Blu-ray Disc

Singulus Technologies, the world's leading maker of optical disc replication equipment, announced today that it will manufacture production equipment for pre-recorded Blu-ray Discs (BD-ROM). "We are very excited to be working on the Blu-ray Disc, especially at the birth of the new format." said Roland Lacher, CEO and President of Singulus Technologies.

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Sony and Nichia Co-Develop Components for Smaller Blu-ray Devices

Posted November 16, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin
Blu-ray Disc

Sony and Nichia have successfully co-developed a wholly integrated dual wavelength laser coupler compatible with BD/DVD, which they plan to supply to other companies. In conventional BD/DVD laser optical disc systems, the laser diode and optical receiver parts corresponding to each wavelength were independent of each other.

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HP to Introduce Blu-ray Disc Drives in PCs Next Year

Posted November 15, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin
Hewlett Packard

HP today announced that they will start selling PCs equipped with Blu-ray Disc drives in late 2005, starting in its desktop PCs, media center PCs, personal workstations, and digital entertainment centers. "Our decision to back Blu-ray was largely because of its capacity advantage (over HD-DVD), as well as the interactive features being built into the specification." said Maureen Weber, general manager of optical storage at HP. Pushing products based on Blu-ray to market is a priority for HP.

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Sharp Introduces Blu-ray Disc Recorder with Hard Drive/DVD

Posted November 11, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin

Sharp today announced that they will introduce a new Blu-ray Disc recorder on the Japanese market in December. The new BD-HD100, which features a built-in hard drive (160GB), can record and play back high-definition video (HDTV) without any loss in quality. It comes equipped with the world's first twin BD/DVD tray that enables digital dubbing between the hard drive, DVDs, and Blu-ray Discs, including the ability to dub five DVDs (4.7GB) onto a single Blu-ray Disc (25GB).

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TDK Develops New Hard-Coating Technology for Blu-ray Discs

Posted October 30, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin
Blu-ray Disc

TDK has successfully developed a new hard-coating technology that makes Blu-ray Discs even more resistant to scratches and fingerprints than existing DVDs, without requiring a cartridge to protect the discs. Two separate layers of fine silica particles prevent scratches, and fluorine-containing resins in each layer repel ink marks. The Blu-ray Disc Association (BDA) is pleased with the development because no consumer optical disc that uses a cartridge has ever been a commercial success. The new hard-coating is expected to provide a boost to the upcoming Blu-ray Disc format, which members of the BDA plan to launch next year as a successor to DVDs.

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Ceatec 2004 Report and New Photos

Posted October 19, 2004 12:00 AM by Webmaster

Ceatec 2004, which is one of Asia's largest consumer electronics and IT shows, was recently held and drew more than 180,000 visitors this year. Companies that were showing Blu-ray related products include JVC, Panasonic, Pioneer, Mitsubishi, Mitsumi, Sharp, Sony, and TDK. The Blu-ray Disc Association (BDA) also had a booth where they were offering general information about the BDA and the Blu-ray Disc format. The group is currently in the process of evaluating advanced audio codecs and finalizing the logical/application format for BD-ROM discs, which they expect to be finished by the end of the year. For more information and lots of photos, please check out our Ceatec 2004 report.

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JVC Develops Small Lens for Use in Portable Blu-ray Devices

Posted October 13, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin
Blu-ray Disc

JVC, also known as Victor Company of Japan, announced today that it has developed the world's first single lens with a numeric aperture of 0.95. The ultra-small lens has a focal length of 0.75mm, and is 1.2mm in thickness and 2.1mm in diameter, about 25% smaller in lens surface area than the smallest Blu-ray Disc system lens (NA of 0.85) the company has already developed. In principle, the new lens can boost the capacity of a 12cm-diameter single-layer disc to more than 40GB of data. The small lens will enable the development of smaller BD/DVD/CD compatible optical pickups, as well as portable Blu-ray players and other mobile devices.

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JVC Becomes a Member of Blu-ray Disc Association

Posted October 11, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin
Blu-ray Disc Association

Victor Company of Japan, Ltd. (JVC), a worldwide consumer and professional electronics company, has joined the Blu-ray Disc Association, further strengthening the already overwhelming support for the Blu-ray Disc high- definition optical-disc format among the world's leading consumer electronics and PC companies. JVC becomes one of the first companies to join the newly formed Blu-ray Disc Association, which was created to broaden the opportunities for other companies to help develop, promote and establish Blu-ray Disc as an industry standard for high-definition optical storage.

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Blu-ray Disc Association Launches With More Than 70 Companies

Posted October 5, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin
Blu-ray Disc Association

Today, more than 70 companies from the consumer electronics (CE), information technology (IT), media and software industries held the first official meeting of the Blu-ray Disc Association (BDA), which supports the continued development and promotion of the Blu-ray Disc format. Earlier this year, membership was opened to organizations interested in promoting the Blu-ray Disc format. "We believe the BDA's growth from 13 to 73 companies over the last three months reflects the depth of industry acceptance and support for the Blu-ray Disc as the next generation optical disc format," said Maureen Weber, General Manager of HP's Optical Storage Solutions Business.

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20th Century Fox Joins Blu-ray Disc Founders

Posted October 4, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin
Blu-ray Movies

Twentieth Century Fox has accepted the invitation of the Blu-ray Disc Founders (BDF) becoming the latest member of the group. While the Studio has not committed to publish on the format, it believes that as a Founder it can influence the outcome of key issues including successful content protection as well as production costs and logistics, among other issues. Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment President, Mike Dunn, added, "We look forward to the eventual completion of specifications that will result in a high-definition format with an attractive cost structure similar to current DVD production, within a secure environment with value-added features and interactivity well beyond that offered by today's DVD format".

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Sony today announced that they will begin sales of key components such as optical heads and optical related semiconductor devices for BD players/recorders in December. "Sony has a long history of innovating new technologies that become the industry standard, and with today's announcement, we are confident in the continuation of that tradition", said Dr. Osamu Kumagai of Sony's Device Solutions Company at Microsystems Network Company.

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Advanced Video Codecs Added to BD-ROM Specification

Posted September 1, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin
Blu-ray Disc Founders

The Blu-ray Disc Association (BDA) today announced which advanced video codecs will be included in the BD-ROM specification. They had previously stated that they would include at least one advanced video codec, possibly more than one. The advanced video codecs that will be mandatory are MPEG-4 AVC High Profile and Microsoft's VC-1 video codec (the proposed SMPTE standard based on WMV9). "We've been committed to adding advanced codecs to enrich the Blu-ray Disc format," said Blu-ray Disc spokesperson Maureen Weber, general manager of HP's Optical Storage Solutions Business. "We want to offer content providers a variety of compression codecs to suit their various needs."

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Blu-ray Disc Founders Approve BD-ROM Physical Specification

Posted August 11, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin
Blu-ray Disc Association

The Blu-ray Disc Founders (BDF) have approved Version 1.0 of the BD-ROM physical-format specification and made it available to disc manufacturers and other interested parties. The BDF approved the BD-ROM physical specification within the general timeframe originally outlined in the BD-ROM development roadmap. The completion of the physical specification is an important step because it provides disc manufacturers with the information they need to prepare their BD-ROM disc production lines.

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PlayStation 3 to Feature Blu-ray Disc Technology

Posted August 4, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin
PlayStation 3

Sony has finally confirmed that they will use Blu-ray Disc technology in their next-generation PlayStation 3 (PS3) video game console. What is more surprising is that they also have plans to equip an upcoming version of their PlayStation 2 (PSX) video game console with a Blu-ray Disc player, so that consumers can enjoy both video games and high-definition movies. Sony hopes that the move will help jump-start the market for the new storage format. The announcement came at a press conference held by the Blu-ray Disc Founders (BDF), who also announced that they are in the process of finalizing the read-only version of the Blu-ray Disc format (BD-ROM) which they expect to be finished by September 30, 2004.

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Philips Develops All-in-one Optical Pick-up Unit

Posted July 15, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin

Philips announced that they have developed an optical pick-up unit (OPU) that will be able to read and write CD-R/-RW, DVD+R/+RW and the next- generation optical disc format Blu-ray Disc (BD). With its new OPU81, Philips has created the first important building block of the all-in-one recorder that can record and playback all popular consumer optical formats. By integrating the infrared, red and blue wavelength lasers and single detector into one single OPU concept, Philips has succeeded in developing a flexible triple- writer OPU design in a compact form factor.

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Sony to Test-Produce Blu-ray Discs in the U.S.

Posted July 14, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin
Blu-ray Disc

Sony plans to set up test production lines for Blu-ray Discs in the United States this autumn, company officials said Wednesday. The move is aimed at promoting the use of the next-generation discs by U.S. film studios by modifying the production process and product specifications. The trial production facility will be set up in Sony's digital versatile disc plant in Indiana. It will make a single-layer Blu-ray Disc with a storage capacity of 25GB and a 50GB dual-layer type.

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Panasonic Starts Blu-ray Disc Product Verification Service

Posted May 28, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin

Panasonic today announced that its Format Verification Laboratory has started offering a verification service for Blu-ray Disc blank rewritable media and Blu-ray Disc rewritable recorders. Anticipating a wave of entries of Blu-ray Disc-based products in the coming months, Panasonic has established a laboratory in Osaka to facilitate companies adopting the format and entering the market. For manufacturers, the verification service will ensure consistency with the format, expediting commercialization of Blu-ray Disc-based products.

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Blu-ray Disc Association Announced

Posted May 18, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin
Blu-ray Disc Founders

In response to growing industry support for the Blu-ray Disc standard, the 13 members of the Blu-ray Disc Founders (BDF) today announced plans to create the Blu-ray Disc Association (BDA). The Blu-ray Disc Founders will be re-incorporated into the BDA and is currently developing the membership application processes and operating procedures. The BDA will be open to companies wishing to participate in the future development of Blu-ray Disc and to help develop, promote and establish the Blu-ray Disc format as an industry standard for high-definition optical storage. Applications will be available in late summer and the first official meeting of the new BDA is planned for this fall.

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Blu-ray Disc

Sony has successfully developed a single three-wavelength optical head, capable of recording and playing next-generation Blu-ray Discs, as well as conventional DVDs and CDs without requiring an extra optical head for backwards compatibility. The technology requires less parts, is cheaper to produce and provides full backwards compatibility with current DVD/CD formats. Sony will target commercializing the newly developed optical head within 2 years, and will positively promote to further technology development. By doing so, in addition to further reducing the number of parts used for achieving smaller size of optical heads, enhancement of productivity and reliability will be achieved.

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Toppan and Sony Successfully Develop 25GB Paper Disc

Posted April 15, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin
Blu-ray Disc

Toppan Printing and Sony today announced the successful development of a 25GB paper disc based on Blu-ray Disc technology. More details will be announced at the Optical Data Storage 2004 conference to be held from April 18th to April 21st at Monterey, California. Using the disc-structure of Blu-ray Disc technology, the new paper disc has a total weight that is 51% paper. "Using printing technology on paper allows a high level of artistic label printing on the optical disc.

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Blu-ray Disc Production Costs Comparable to DVD

Posted March 29, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin
Blu-ray Disc Founders

According to the Blu-ray Disc Founders (BDF), Blu-ray Disc will offer by far the highest capacity of any optical disc storage format ever developed for consumers, and yet the production costs of manufacturing Blu-ray Discs is expected to be comparable to current DVDs when manufactured at mass volumes. "Capacity and cost savings were the major reasons HP and other industry leaders chose to support Blu-ray Disc," said Maureen Weber, general manager of HP's Optical Storage Solutions. "The PC business revolves around volume and cost; and, the fact that the most logical cost choice also offers far better quality - as well as a smooth transition plan that is both forward- and backward-looking - is icing on the cake."

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Sony to Offer 50GB Blu-ray Disc Recorders

Posted March 26, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin

Sony has committed itself to shipping second-generation consumer-oriented Blu-ray video recorders by the end of the year, the company said today. The new systems will support single-side, dual-layer rewriteable discs with a total capacity of 50GB. The second-generation machines will also support the so- called BD-ROM format, the Blu-ray equivalent of today's pre-recorded DVDs, Sony said. As yet, the BD-ROM specification remains incomplete, but Sony hopes to have it ready in April.

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TDK Joins Blu-ray Disc Founders

Posted March 18, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin
Blu-ray Disc Association

The Blu-ray Disc Founders (BDF) today announced the addition of TDK, a leading manufacturer of optical discs, as its newest member. "We are pleased to support the Blu-ray Disc format, since it is the format we believe in.", said Mr. Masatoshi Shikanai, Corporate Officer of TDK. "Our new hard-coat technology is perfect for producing robust, bare Blu-ray discs in a cost- efficient way.

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Matsushita to Offer 50GB Blu-ray Disc Recorders in July

Posted March 9, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin
Blu-ray Disc

Matsushita Electric (Panasonic) today announced that they will release a Blu-ray Disc recorder on the Japanese market in July and thereby become the second manufacturer to offer Blu-ray Disc recorders. The Matsushita Blu-ray Disc recorder uses a two-layer disc structure, which means that a single disc can hold up to 50GB of data, or 4.5 hours of HD video. U.S. consumers still have to wait a while longer for Blu-ray products, but LG Electronics has previously stated that they intend to introduce a Blu-ray Disc recorder with a 200GB hard drive in the U.S. in the third quarter of 2004.

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HP and Dell Join Blu-ray Disc Founders

Posted January 30, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin
Blu-ray Disc Association

HP and Dell, have joined the Blu-ray Disc Founders (BDF), adding support from the world's two largest PC manufacturers to the already broad support from the consumer electronics industry for the Blu-ray Disc format. Dell and HP announced their support for the Blu-ray Disc format at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas earlier this month and have now formally joined the organization responsible for developing and promoting the revolutionary new format for high-capacity optical discs.

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Blu-ray Gains Support from HP and Dell

Posted January 8, 2004 12:00 AM by Marwin
Blu-ray Disc Association

The Blu-ray Disc Founders (BDF) welcome the support from Hewlett-Packard Company and Dell Inc., the two largest PC manufacturers, underlining the true convergence between consumer electronics and IT industry, enabled by Blu-ray Disc. The support from HP and Dell is an important step in providing the industry and consumers with one format that covers both PC as well as consumer electronics applications. In addition, the Blu-ray Disc Founders are in the process of finalizing the complete format specifications portfolio.

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