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DVD Forum progresses 51GB HD DVD disc specs

At Berlin's DVD Forum Europe 2007 conference, the DVD Forum pointed out that it is the preliminary version 1.9 of Toshiba’s 51GB triple-layer HD DVD (read only) disc that the organisation has just agreed, not the final version as press reports suggested. The 51GB HD DVD standard was first announced at the Consumer Electronics Show in January.

HD DVD discs hold 15GB per layer, so in order to exceed the capacity of the dual-layer Blu-ray Disc, an extra 2GB per layer was squeezed in, for a total of 51GB. Toshiba states that continued improvement in disc mastering technology has achieved further minimization in the recording pit, allowing for the boost in capacity to 17GB in single layer and a full 51GB on a single-sided triple-layer disc.

The 51GB triple-layer HD DVD standard will enhance the competitiveness of HD DVD against Blu-ray Disc, since the largest storage capacity of a single-sided double-layer BD disc is 50GB.

A source quoted by DigiTimes suggests that, even if the final version of the triple-layer HD DVD standard comes out soon, it would take one to three quarters before the start of production of corresponding disc drives/players and the production costs during the initial stages may be higher than that of BD drives/players.

However, it would appear that online downloading of software updates owners of HD DVD players are encouraged to sign up to could ready current units for triple-layer disc playback.

Story filed 17.09.07

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