Print 26 comment(s) - last by tophat.. on Sep 19 at 2:59 PM

Step aside hybrid players, here comes hybrid media

The high-definition optical media format war has been brewing for a while now and none of the two, Blu-ray or HD DVD, has come up ahead of the other in terms of adoption by the big name studios. NewScientistTech is reporting that a couple of engineers at Warner, Alan Bell and Lewis Ostrover have come up with the idea of a hybrid disc that will hold not only standard DVD and HD DVD content which we have seen before, but also Blu-ray content all on a single optical disc.

The way this is said to work by the two engineers is that the HD DVD format uses 0.6mm deep pits to store data while Blu-ray uses 0.1mm deep pits. If a Blu-ray layer is placed on top of an HD DVD layer, it can allow enough of the laser to shine through to read the underlying HD DVD layer but also be able to reflect enough light for a Blu-ray player to read the disc. The standard DVD layer can then be manufactured on the opposite side of the media to keep it separate because of the difference in lasers used.

Of course, the costs to manufacture such media would increase but even then it would be much more economical to produce a single triple-format disc than to press 3 types of media separately for the same content, according to NewScientistTech.

Additionally, many are announcing hybrid players to cover both HD DVD and Blu-ray while those early adopters of the idea such as LG are going back to sticking to a single format.

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RE: Winner
By abhaxus on 9/18/2006 3:31:17 PM , Rating: 3
HDBDDVD... is it so much to ask that the format easiest to say wins? I love HDDVD but I hate trying to talk to customers about it (i work for a regional specialty retailer) because it is harder to say than blu ray :)

RE: Winner
By tophat on 9/19/2006 2:59:53 PM , Rating: 2
I guess everyone missed my point. Put simply, the media that they're introducing is independent of the format and thus bypasses all the controversy surrounding BD vs HD (not to mention backwards compatible with existing DVD players.)

I would say that idea would have a good run for at least 2-3 years (if it ever hits the market). I speculate at a minumum of 2-3 years as that's the timeframe I'm giving it before either BD or HD decides to fold. In any case, the movie studios who haven't signed on for one format over another could easily provide both formats on the same disk. This flexibility would bode well for both the movie studios as well as the consumer.

"There's no chance that the iPhone is going to get any significant market share. No chance." -- Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer
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