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Blu-ray, HD-DVD Manufacturers Announce DVD-Compatible High-Def Technologies

29 Dec, 2004 By: Erik Gruenwedel

Japanese electronics manufacturers have announced prototype DVD products compatible with both Blu-ray Disc and HD-DVD formats.

Memory-Tech Corp. and Toshiba Corp. unveiled a dual-layer ROM (read-only) disc that features both 4.7GB DVD capacity and 15GB HD-DVD capacity.

The disc would allow consumers to view DVD content on a standard DVD player and, after purchasing an HD-DVD player, view high-definition content from the same disc.

NEC said it had developed a DVD player capable of playing back HD-DVD, DVD and CD with a single optical head.

Toshiba and Memory-Tech, together with Sanyo Corp. and NEC, late last month launched the HD-DVD Promotion Group, designed to counter the Blu-ray Disc Association, whose 70-plus members include Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Hitachi, LG Electronics, Mitsubishi Electric Corp., Panasonic (Matsushita Electric), Pioneer Corp., Royal Philips Electronics, Samsung Electronics Co., Sharp Corp., Sony Corp., TDK Corp., JVC and Thomson.

JVC announced a Blu-ray/DVD disc with 33.5GB capacity, including 8.5GB DVD capacity and 25GB Blu-ray capacity.

A JVC spokesperson said retail price and availability were still to be determined. Initial estimates reportedly have the dual-disc format costing up to 30 percent more than current DVD discs.

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