Print 56 comment(s) - last by Zoomer.. on Oct 15 at 10:41 AM

Hybrid players due early next year

With no foreseeable happy ending to the HD-DVD/Blu-ray format war, NEC has done us all a favor today by shipping a chip that is compatible with both formats.

According to Reuters, "the chips go on sale for 10,000 yen ($84), roughly the same price as NEC Electronics' chips which read only Blu-ray or only HD DVD formats." Players incorporating the new chip will be available sometime early 2007, reports AkibaNews.

While we now have silicon to rule both formats, the optical pick-up lens capable of reading both HD-DVD and Blu-ray is still currently in development. Until such a hybrid pick-up becomes reality, dual-players must utilize two separate lenses, which no doubt drives up costs.

A NEC spokesperson commented that a hybrid chip and optical pick-up would likely make up more than half of the cost of a player.

Developments to bridge the gap between the two warring formats isn't exclusive to hardware. Warner recently filed a patent outlining plans of a hybrid-disc that will be compatible with both HD-DVD and Blu-ray by means of layering one format on top of the other.

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RE: oh please
By Helbore on 10/11/2006 11:01:26 AM , Rating: 2
Actually, HD-DVD was ratified by the DVD forum, so was supported by the majority of the industry. Originally, even Sony supported it, but pulled ouot in favor of a proprietry format, much like they did with DVD-Audio.

The driving reason is that Sony owned the CD format and lived off the immense income generated by the royalties and wants to maintain this control with all future formats. Just look at how many Sony-proprietry formats have existed (and had ridiculous price tags compared to the competition)

Oh and Blu-Ray is 25GB per layer. Most Blu-Ray discs to date have only been single layer. Click is the first dual-layer disc so far.

Personally, I was a supporter of Blu-Ray for a long time, a it did have better specs on paper. However, the final results, so far, have not been favourable for Sony and if I were to purchase now (which I won't) I would be choosing HD-DVD.

RE: oh please
By EclipsedAurora on 10/11/2006 2:10:13 PM , Rating: 2

It is the R&D power of Sony is so amazing
Sony owns far more patents then TOshiba at least.

And u've forgot Philips, the CD/DVD/BluRay co-inventor as well.

RE: oh please
By zombiexl on 10/11/2006 9:49:33 PM , Rating: 2
You forgot that Sony also has far more failed proprietary formats.

BR is great for storage but the price is insane.. I havent seen a BR player below $980, but I can pickup an HD-DVD player for under $500 and get better quality in the earlier movies released, I'm sure BR is catching u now.

In any case I wouldnt spend even $500 on either format this early in the game and since I already own 2 - 360's I dont have to.

Before you try to label me as anti-sony, most of my AV stuff is still Sony (not sure why though)...

"People Don't Respect Confidentiality in This Industry" -- Sony Computer Entertainment of America President and CEO Jack Tretton

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