Last updated

Media typeHigh-density optical disc
Encoding VC-1, H.264, and MPEG-2
Capacity15  GB (single layer)
30 GB (dual layer)
Read mechanism405 nm laser:
1× @ 36 Mbit/s & 2× @ 72 Mbit/s
Write mechanism405 nm laser:
1× @ 36 Mbit/s & 2× @ 72 Mbit/s
Developed by DVD Forum
UsageData storage, 1080p high-definition video
Extended from DVD-Video
Extended to Blu-ray Disc

HD DVD (short for High Definition Digital Versatile Disc) [1] is a discontinued high-density optical disc format for storing data and playback of high-definition video. [2] Supported principally by Toshiba, HD DVD was envisioned to be the successor to the standard DVD format.

Optical disc flat, usually circular disc which encodes binary data

In computing and optical disc recording technologies, an optical disc (OD) is a flat, usually circular disc which encodes binary data (bits) in the form of pits and lands on a special material on one of its flat surfaces. The encoding material sits atop a thicker substrate which makes up the bulk of the disc and forms a dust defocusing layer. The encoding pattern follows a continuous, spiral path covering the entire disc surface and extending from the innermost track to the outermost track. The data is stored on the disc with a laser or stamping machine, and can be accessed when the data path is illuminated with a laser diode in an optical disc drive which spins the disc at speeds of about 200 to 4,000 RPM or more, depending on the drive type, disc format, and the distance of the read head from the center of the disc. Most optical discs exhibit a characteristic iridescence as a result of the diffraction grating formed by its grooves. This side of the disc contains the actual data and is typically coated with a transparent material, usually lacquer. The reverse side of an optical disc usually has a printed label, sometimes made of paper but often printed or stamped onto the disc itself. Unlike the 3½-inch floppy disk, most optical discs do not have an integrated protective casing and are therefore susceptible to data transfer problems due to scratches, fingerprints, and other environmental problems.

High-definition video is video of higher resolution and quality than standard-definition. While there is no standardized meaning for high-definition, generally any video image with considerably more than 480 vertical lines or 576 vertical lines (Europe) is considered high-definition. 480 scan lines is generally the minimum even though the majority of systems greatly exceed that. Images of standard resolution captured at rates faster than normal, by a high-speed camera may be considered high-definition in some contexts. Some television series shot on high-definition video are made to look as if they have been shot on film, a technique which is often known as filmizing.

Toshiba Japanese multinational electronics, electrical equipment and information technology corporation

Toshiba Corporation is a Japanese multinational conglomerate headquartered in Tokyo, Japan. Its diversified products and services include information technology and communications equipment and systems, electronic components and materials, power systems, industrial and social infrastructure systems, consumer electronics, household appliances, medical equipment, office equipment, as well as lighting and logistics.


On 19 February 2008, after a protracted format war with rival Blu-ray, Toshiba abandoned the format, [3] announcing it would no longer manufacture HD DVD players and drives. [2] The HD DVD Promotion Group was dissolved on March 28, 2008. [4]

Blu-ray optical disc storage medium

Blu-ray or Blu-ray Disc (BD) is a digital optical disc data storage format. It was designed to supersede the DVD format, and is capable of storing several hours of video in high-definition and ultra high-definition resolution (2160p). The main application of Blu-ray is as a medium for video material such as feature films and for the physical distribution of video games for the PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. The name "Blu-ray" refers to the blue laser used to read the disc, which allows information to be stored at a greater density than is possible with the longer-wavelength red laser used for DVDs.

The HD DVD physical disc specifications (but not the codecs) were used as the basis for the China Blue High-definition Disc (CBHD) formerly called CH-DVD.

A codec is a device or computer program for encoding or decoding a digital data stream or signal. Codec is a portmanteau of coder-decoder.

China Blue High-Definition is a high definition optical disc format announced in September 2007 by the Optical Memory National Engineering Research Center (OMNERC) of Tsinghua University in China.

Because all variants except 3× DVD and HD REC employed a blue laser with a shorter wavelength, HD DVD stored about 3.2 times as much data per layer as its predecessor (maximum capacity: 15 GB per layer compared to 4.7 GB per layer).

Blue laser

A blue laser is a laser that emits electromagnetic radiation with a wavelength between 360 and 480 nanometres, which the human eye sees as blue or violet.


In the late 1990s, commercial HDTV sets started to enter a larger market, but there was no inexpensive way to record or play back HD content. JVC's D-VHS and Sony's HDCAM formats could store that amount of data, but were neither popular nor well-known. [5] It was well known that using lasers with shorter wavelengths would yield optical storage with higher density. Shuji Nakamura invented practical blue laser diodes, but a lengthy patent lawsuit delayed commercial introduction. [6]

High-definition television (HDTV) is a television system providing an image resolution that is of substantially higher resolution than that of standard-definition television. This can be either analog or digital. HDTV is the current standard video format used in most broadcasts: terrestrial broadcast television, cable television, satellite television, Blu-rays, and streaming video.

JVC Japanese international electronics corporation

Victor Company of Japan, Ltd., TYO: 6792, usually referred to as JVC or The Japan Victor Company, is a Japanese international professional and consumer electronics corporation based in Yokohama. Founded in 1927, the company is best known for introducing Japan's first televisions and for developing the Video Home System (VHS) video recorder.

D-VHS digital video recording format

D-VHS is a digital video recording format developed by JVC, in collaboration with Hitachi, Matsushita, and Philips. The "D" in D-VHS originally stood for "Data", but JVC renamed the format as "Digital VHS". Released in 1998, It uses the same physical cassette format and recording mechanism as S-VHS, and is capable of recording and displaying both standard-definition and high-definition content. The content data format is in MPEG transport stream, the same data format used for most digital television applications. The format was introduced in 1998.

Origins and competition from Blu-ray Disc

Sony started two projects applying the new diodes: UDO (Ultra Density Optical) and DVR Blue together with Philips, a format of rewritable discs which would eventually become Blu-ray Disc (more specifically, BD-RE) and later on with Pioneer a format of read only discs (BD-ROM). [7] The two formats share several technologies (such as the AV codecs and the laser diode). In February 2002, the project was officially announced as Blu-ray Disc, [8] and the Blu-ray Disc Association was founded by the nine initial members.

Ultra Density Optical (UDO) is an optical disc format designed for high-density storage of high-definition video and data.

The Blu-ray Disc Association (BDA) is the industry consortium that develops and licenses Blu-ray Disc technology and is responsible for establishing format standards and promoting business opportunities for Blu-ray Disc. The BDA is divided into three levels of membership: the Board of Directors, Contributors, and General Members.

The DVD Forum (chaired by Sony) was deeply split over whether to go with the more expensive blue lasers or not. Although today's Blu-ray Discs appear virtually identical to a standard DVD, when the Blu-ray Discs were initially developed they required a protective caddy to avoid mis-handling by the consumer (early CD-Rs also featured a protective caddy for the same purpose.) The Blu-ray Disc prototype's caddy was both expensive and physically different from DVD, posing several problems. [9] In March 2002, the forum voted to approve a proposal endorsed by Warner Bros. and other motion picture studios that involved compressing HD content onto dual-layer DVD-9 discs. [10] [11] In spite of this decision, the DVD Forum's Steering Committee announced in April that it was pursuing its own blue-laser high-definition solution. In August, Toshiba and NEC announced their competing standard Advanced Optical Disc. [12] It was adopted by the DVD forum and renamed to HD DVD the next year. [13]

The HD DVD Promotion Group was a group of manufacturers and media studios formed to exchange thoughts and ideas to help promote the format worldwide. [14] Its members comprised Toshiba as the Chair Company and Secretary, Memory-Tech Corporation and NEC as Vice-Chair companies, and Sanyo Electric as Auditors; there were 61 general members and 72 associate members in total. [15] The HD DVD promotion group was officially dissolved on March 28, 2008, following Toshiba's announcement on February 19, 2008 that it would no longer develop or manufacture HD DVD players and drives.

Attempts to avoid a format war

Much like the VHS vs. Betamax videotape format war during the late 1970s and early 1980s, HD DVD was competing with a rival format—in this case, Blu-ray Disc. In 2008, major content manufacturers and key retailers began withdrawing their support for the format.

In an attempt to avoid a costly format war, the Blu-ray Disc Association and DVD Forum attempted to negotiate a compromise in early 2005. One of the issues was that Blu-ray Disc companies wanted to use a Java-based platform for interactivity (BD-J based on Sun Microsystems' Java TV standards), while HD DVD companies wanted to use Microsoft's "iHD" (which became HDi). [16] Another problem was the physical formats of the discs themselves. [17] The negotiations proceeded slowly and ultimately stalled. [18]

On August 22, 2005, the Blu-ray Disc Association and DVD Forum announced that the negotiations to unify their standards had failed. [19] Rumors surfaced that talks had stalled; publicly, the same reasons of physical format incompatibility were cited. [17] [20] By the end of September that year, Microsoft and Intel jointly announced their support for HD DVD. [21]

Hewlett-Packard (HP) attempted to broker a compromise between the Blu-ray Disc Association and Microsoft by demanding that Blu-ray Disc use Microsoft's HDi instead of BD-J and threatening to support HD DVD instead. [22] The Blu-ray Disc Association did not agree to HP's demands. [23]


In November 2006, Microsoft released an HD DVD player for their Xbox 360 game console for $199. It came packaged with King Kong and could only play movies. Microsoft-Xbox-360-HD-DVD-Drive-Front.jpg
In November 2006, Microsoft released an HD DVD player for their Xbox 360 game console for $199. It came packaged with King Kong and could only play movies.

On March 31, 2006, Toshiba released their first consumer-based HD DVD player in Japan at ¥110,000 (US$934). [24] HD DVD was released in the United States on April 18, 2006, [25] with players priced at $499 and $799.

The first HD DVD titles were released on April 18, 2006. They were The Last Samurai , Million Dollar Baby , and The Phantom of the Opera by Warner Home Video and Serenity by Universal Studios. [26] The first independent HD film released on HD DVD was One Six Right . [27] [28]

Sales developments

In December 2006 Toshiba reported that roughly 120,000 Toshiba branded HD DVD players had been sold in the United States, along with 150,000 HD DVD add-on units for the Xbox 360. [29]

On April 17, 2007, one year after the first HD DVD titles were released, [25] the HD DVD group reported that they had sold 100,000 dedicated HD DVD units in the United States. [30]

In the middle of 2007, the first HD DVD Recorders were released in Japan. [31]

In November 2007, the Toshiba HD-A2 was the first high definition player to be sold at a sale price of less than US$100; this was done through several major retailers to make room for the new HD-A3 models. These closeout sales lasted less than a day each due to both limited quantities and high demand at that price point. In the same month, the HD DVD promotion group announced that 750,000 HD DVD players had been sold, which included stand-alone players and the Xbox 360 add-on. [32]

In January 2008 Toshiba announced that close to one million dedicated HD DVD players had been sold. [33]

As of June 24, 2008, 475 HD DVD titles had been released in the US. [34] As of April 29, 2008, 236 HD DVD titles had been released in Japan. [35] Approximately 232 were released in the UK.[ citation needed ]


On January 4, 2008, citing consumer confusion and indifference as a reason for lackluster high-definition software sales, Warner Bros. publicly announced it would stop supporting HD DVD by June 2008, and the company would release HD titles only on Blu-ray Disc. [36] This was followed by news of Netflix phasing out support for the format, and Best Buy's decision to recommend Blu-ray Disc over HD DVD in its retail locations and to remove HD DVD players as part of its ongoing "HDTV advantage" promotion. Finally, retailer Wal-Mart announced that it would be supporting only Blu-ray Disc by June 2008. On February 19, 2008, Toshiba announced plans to discontinue development, marketing and manufacturing of HD DVD players while still providing product support and after-sale service to consumers of the format (including firmware updates). The company cited "recent major changes in the market". [37] Shipments of HD DVD machines to retailers were reduced and eventually stopped by the end of March 2008. [38] Toshiba later revealed that they lost about $986 million on the format's failure. [39]

End of releases

The final HD DVD releases in the United States from a major studio were Paramount's Into the Wild , Warner's P.S. I Love You and Twister , on May 27, 2008. In June, the final HD DVD to be released was Freedom: 6 from Bandai Visual. Bandai Visual acknowledged the demise of HD DVD, but stated that it wanted to complete the release of the seven-part Freedom Project , of which six parts were released. [40] The seventh part, due for August 2008, never saw a release. Disco Pigs was announced but postponed, with no new date ever announced for release. [41] Pan's Labyrinth is also notable for being New Line Cinema's only film to ever be released on HD DVD, as they quickly shifted to Blu-ray.

Death Proof was released on HD DVD format by Senator Films in Germany on December 15, 2008. This special release was also a steelbook. [42]

On April 3, 2010, Engadget reported that Anthem Films would release the film Deadlands 2: Trapped on HD DVD in a limited run of 500 copies. This eventually happened in the form of HD DVD-Rs. [43] Deadlands: The Rising announced on September 5, 2010 was released on HD DVD in limited numbers. As with the previously released Deadlands 2: Trapped, the film was pressed on HD DVD-R disc. [44]

Warner Blu-ray Disc replacements in the U.S.

In mid-2009, Warner offered to replace any HD DVD Warner home video release with a Blu-ray Disc equivalent for $4.95, plus $6.95 shipping to the contiguous United States or $8.95 to Alaska, Hawaii or Puerto Rico. [45] The deal required the HD DVD's original sleeve art to be returned to Warner as a proof of purchase. The turn-around time for processing was approximately two weeks. Multi-disc sets were exchangeable at a discount, e.g., $14.95 for the 5-disc Blade Runner release, rather than $24.75. No exchanges were offered to customers outside the United States.

Technical specifications

The current specification books for HD DVD are listed at the DVD FLLC website. [46]

Disc structure

HD DVD-ROM, HD DVD-R and HD DVD-RW have a single-layer capacity of 15 GB, and a dual-layer capacity of 30 GB. HD DVD-RAM has a single-layer capacity of 20 GB. [47] Like the original DVD format, the data layer of an HD DVD is 0.6 mm below the surface to physically protect the data layer from damage. The numerical aperture of the optical pick-up head is 0.65, compared with 0.6 for DVD. All HD DVD players are backward compatible with DVD and CD. [48]

Physical sizeSingle layer capacityDual layer capacity
12 cm (4.7 in), single sided15 GB30 GB
12 cm (4.7 in), double sided30 GB60 GB
8 cm (3.1 in), single sided4.7 GB8.5 GB
8 cm (3.1 in), double sided9.4 GB18.8 GB

Recording speed

Drive speedData rateWrite time for HD DVD (minutes)
Mbit/s MB/s Single LayerDual Layer

File systems

As with previous optical disc formats, HD DVD supports several file systems, such as ISO 9660 and Universal Disk Format (UDF). All HD DVD titles use UDF version 2.5 as the file system. In this file system, multiplexed audio and video streams are stored in EVO container format. [49]


The HD DVD format supports encoding in up to 24-bit/192 kHz for two channels, or up to eight channels of up to 24-bit/96 kHz encoding. [50]

All HD DVD players are required to decode uncompressed linear PCM, Dolby Digital AC-3, Dolby Digital EX, DTS, Dolby Digital Plus E-AC-3 and Dolby TrueHD. [51] A secondary soundtrack, if present, can be stored in any of the aforementioned formats, or in one of the HD DVD optional codecs: DTS-HD High Resolution Audio and DTS-HD Master Audio. For the highest-fidelity audio experience, HD DVD offers content-producers the choice of LPCM, Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio.


HD DVD video can be encoded using VC-1, H.264/MPEG-4 AVC, or H.262/MPEG-2 Part 2.[ citation needed ] A wide variety of resolutions are supported, from low-resolution CIF, all SDTV resolutions supported by DVD-Video, and HDTV formats: 720p, 1080i, and 1080p. [50] All studio-released movie titles have featured video in a 1080-line format, with companion supplements in 480i or 480p. The vast majority of releases were encoded with VC-1, and most of the remaining titles encoded with H.264/MPEG-4 AVC.

Digital rights management

If a publisher wishes to restrict use of its HD DVD content, it may use the Advanced Access Content System (AACS) although this is not required for normal disc playback. AACS is a standard for content distribution and digital rights management. It is developed by AACS Licensing Administrator, LLC (AACS LA), a consortium that includes Disney, Intel, Microsoft, Panasonic, Warner Bros., IBM, Toshiba and Sony. One of the advantages over CSS, the content restriction system for DVDs, is that AACS allows content providers to revoke an individual player device model if its cryptographic keys have been compromised (meaning that it will not be able to decrypt subsequently released content). There is no Region Coding in the existing HD DVD specification, which means that titles from any country can be played in players in any other country.

Since appearing in devices in 2006, several successful attacks have been made on the format. The first known attack relied on the trusted client problem. In addition, decryption keys have been extracted from a weakly protected player (WinDVD). Notably, a Processing Key was found that could be used to decrypt all HD content that had been released at the time. [52] The processing key was widely published on the Internet after it was found and the AACS LA sent multiple DMCA takedown notices in the aim of censoring it. [53] This caused trouble on some sites that rely on user-submitted content, like Digg and Wikipedia, when administrators tried to remove any mentions of the key. [54] [55]

AACS has also been circumvented by SlySoft with their program AnyDVD HD, which allows users to watch HD DVD movies on non-HDCP-compliant PC hardware. Slysoft has stated that AnyDVD HD uses several different mechanisms to disable the encryption, and is not dependent on the use of a single compromised encryption key. [56] Other AACS circumvention programs have become available, like DVDFab HD Decrypter. [57]

Interactive content

HD DVDs use Advanced Content to allow interactive content to be authored for discs. Microsoft's implementation of Advanced Content is the HDi Interactive Format, and "HDi" is frequently used to refer to the Advanced Content system. Advanced Content is based on web technologies such as HTML, XML, CSS, SMIL, and ECMAScript (JavaScript), so authoring in Advanced Content should be a fairly easy transition for web developers. No existing DVD authoring experience is required. In comparison, Blu-ray Disc content is authored using either a scripting environment (BDMV) or a Java-based platform (BD-J). DVD video discs use pre-rendered MPEG segments, selectable subtitle pictures, and simple programmatic navigation which is considerably more limited.



Backward compatibility is available with all HD DVD players, allowing users to have a single player to play all types of HD DVD, DVD and CD. There is also a hybrid HD DVD format which contains both DVD and HD DVD versions of the same movie on a single disc, providing a smooth transition for the studios in terms of publishing movies, and allowing consumers with only DVD players to still use the discs. DVD replication companies can continue using their current production equipment with only minor alterations when changing over to the format of HD DVD replication. Due to the structure of the single-lens optical head, both red and blue laser diodes can be used in smaller, more compact HD DVD players.

General purpose computers

HD DVD drives can also be used with a desktop/laptop personal computer (PC) running Windows XP, Windows Vista, Mac OS X v10.5 "Leopard", and many varieties of Linux. Third-party player software for Windows and Linux have successfully played HD DVD titles using the add-on drive. [58]

Released at the end of November 2006, the Microsoft HD DVD drive for the Xbox 360 game-console gives the Xbox 360 the ability to play HD DVD movies. The drive was announced with an MSRP of US$199 and includes a USB 2.0 cable for connection to the console. The first drives also included Peter Jackson's King Kong or Christopher Nolan's Batman Begins on HD DVD. The final "regular" for the drive was US$129.99 as of February 25, 2008. On February 23, 2008 Microsoft discontinued the Xbox 360 HD DVD player. On February 26, 2008, Microsoft "officially" announced that the Xbox 360 HD DVD add on drive would reflect a heavily discounted price down to $49.99. [59]

Dual-compatibility drives

In 2007, LG and Samsung released standalone consumer players that could read both HD DVD and Blu-ray Discs. The machines were sold at premium prices, but failed to sell in large quantities. In May 2008, both companies announced they would stop manufacturing dual-compatibility drives. [60]

A few computer manufacturers (such as HP and Acer) sold computers with combination HD DVD/Blu-ray Disc drives. LG marketed a Blu-ray writer that also read HD DVD discs (but could not write to them). [61] [62]

HD DVD / Blu-ray Disc comparison

Comparison of various optical storage media Comparison CD DVD HDDVD BD.svg
Comparison of various optical storage media

HD DVD competed primarily with Blu-ray Disc. Both formats were designed as successors to DVD, capable of higher quality video and audio playback, and of greater capacity when used to store video, audio, and computer data. Blu-ray Disc and HD DVD share most of the same methods of encoding media onto discs with each other, resulting in equivalent levels of audio and visual quality, but differ in other aspects such as interactive capabilities, internet integration, usage control and enforcement, and in which features were mandatory for players. The storage size also varies: A dual-layer HD DVD holds a maximum of 30 GB of data, while a dual-layer Blu-ray Disc carries 50 GB.


Even after finalizing the HD DVD standard, engineers continued developing the technology. A 51 GB triple-layer spec was approved at the DVD Forums 40th Steering Committee Meeting (held on November 15, 2007). [63] No movies had been scheduled for this disc type, and Toshiba had declined to say whether the 51 GB disc was compatible with existing drives and players. Specification 2.0 Part 1 (Physical Specification) for triple layer HD DVD had been approved in November 2007. [64]

At the CES 2007, Ritek revealed their high definition optical disc process that extended both competing high definition formats to ten layers, increasing capacity to 150 GB for HD DVD and 250 GB for Blu-ray Disc. A major obstacle to implementing this technology in either format (150 GB HD DVD will not be developed due to HD DVD's discontinuation) is that reader-writer technology available may not be able to support the additional data layers. [65]

NEC, [66] Broadcom, [67] Horizon Semiconductors, and STMicroelectronics [67] have separately developed a single chip/laser that can read both the HD DVD and the Blu-ray Disc standard. Broadcom and STMicroelectronics will be selling their dual-format single chip/laser solution to any OEM willing to develop a product based on the chip.

Variants and media


HD DVD-R is the writable disc variant of HD DVD, available with a single-layer capacity of 15 GB or a dual-layer capacity of 30 GB. [68] Write speeds depend on drive speed, with a data rate of 36.55 Mbit/s (4.36 MB/s) and a recording time of 56 minutes for 1× media, and 73 Mbit/s (8.71 MB/s) and a recording time of 28 minutes for 2×.

The Toshiba SD-L902A for notebooks was one of the first available HD DVD writers, although it was not meant for retail. [69] [70] Burning HD DVD (including Dual Layer) with a 1× write speed, it could also burn DVDs and CDs. In a test of the SD-L902A by C't computer magazine with Verbatim discs, the written HD DVD-Rs suffered from high noise levels, [71] as a result, the written discs could not be recognized by the external HD DVD drive of the Xbox 360, though they could be read back by the SD-L902A. [72]

HD DVD-RW is the rewritable disc variant of HD DVD with equal storage capacity to an HD DVD-R. The primary advantage of HD DVD-RW over HD DVD-R is the ability to erase and rewrite to an HD DVD-RW disc, up to about 1,000 times before needing replacement, making them comparable with the CD-RW and DVD-RW standards. This is also of benefit if there are writing errors when recording data, as the disc is not ruined and can still store data by erasing the faulty data.

HD DVD-RAM was the proposed successor to DVD-RAM for random access on optical media using phase-change principals. It would hold 20 gigabytes per layer instead of 15 gigabytes for HD DVD-R, due to differences in recording methods used, yielding a higher density disc.

DVD / HD DVD hybrid discs

There are two types of hybrid formats which contain standard DVD-Video format video for playback in regular DVD players, and HD DVD video for playback in high definition on HD DVD players. The Combo disc is a dual sided disc with one side DVD and the other HD DVD, each of which can have up to two layers. The Twin disc is a single sided disc that can have up to three layers, with up to two layers dedicated to either DVD or HD DVD. [73] These hybrid discs make retail marketing and shelf space management easier. Another advantage is hardware cross-compatibility. The average consumer does not have to worry about whether or not they can play a hybrid DVD: any standard home DVD player can access the DVD-encoded content and any HD DVD player can access both the DVD- and HD DVD-encoded content.

HD DVD / Blu-ray Disc hybrid discs

Warner Bros. officially announced Total Hi Def (THD or Total HD) at CES 2007. THD hybrid discs were to support both HD DVD and Blu-ray Disc, with HD DVD on one side (up to two layers) and Blu-ray Disc on the other side (up to two layers). In November 2007, Warner Bros. cancelled THD's development. [74]

3× DVD

The HD DVD format also applies to current red laser DVDs; this type of disc is called "3× DVD", as it is capable of three times the bandwidth of regular DVD-Video.

3× DVDs are physically identical to normal DVDs. Although 3× DVDs provide the same high definition content, their playback time is less. For example, an 8.5 GB DVD can hold about 90 minutes of 1080p video encoded with VC-1 or AVC at an average bitrate of 12 Mbit/s, which corresponds with the average length of Hollywood feature-films. If quality is compromised slightly, and good compression techniques are used, most feature films could be encoded with 3× DVD. Due to its much greater resolution, HD-Video also has significantly more redundant information than DVD which newer compression standards can encode more efficiently.

It is technically possible for consumers to create HD DVD compatible discs using low cost DVD-R or DVD+R media. At least one such guide exists. [75] The 3× DVD is comparable to Blu-ray Disc BD5 and BD9 formats.


HD Rec is an extension of the HD DVD format for recording HD content on regular red laser DVD-Rs/DVD-RWs using H.264/MPEG-4 AVC compression. [76] It was approved by the DVD Forum on September 12, 2007 [77] It is comparable to Blu-ray Disc's AVCREC.


The China Blue High-definition Disc (CBHD), a high-definition optical disc format, was based upon the HD DVD format. Like the HD DVD, CBHD discs have a capacity of 15 GB single-layer and 30 GB dual-layer and can use existing DVD production lines. Unlike the HD DVD format, industry support for this format has grown steadily.[ citation needed ]

See also

Alternative disc technologies

Related Research Articles

DVD player device playing DVD discs

A DVD player is a device that plays DVD discs produced under both the DVD-Video and DVD-Audio technical standards, two different and incompatible standards. Some DVD players will also play audio CDs. DVD players are connected to a television to watch the DVD content, which could be a movie, a recorded TV show, or other content.

Versatile Multilayer Disc high-capacity red laser optical disc technology

Versatile Multilayer Disc is a high-capacity red laser optical disc technology designed by New Medium Enterprises, Inc.. VMD was intended to compete with the blue laser Blu-ray Disc format and had an initial capacity of up to 30GB per side.

Holographic Versatile Disc

The Holographic Versatile Disc (HVD) is an optical disc technology developed between April 2004 and mid-2008 that can store up to several terabytes of data on an optical disc 10 cm or 12 cm in diameter. The reduced radius reduces cost and materials used. It employs a technique known as collinear holography, whereby a green and red laser beam are collimated in a single beam. The green laser reads data encoded as laser interference fringes from a holographic layer near the top of the disc. A red laser is used as the reference beam to read servoinformation from a regular CD-style aluminium layer near the bottom. Servoinformation is used to monitor the position of the read head over the disc, similar to the head, track, and sector information on a conventional hard disk drive. On a CD or DVD this servoinformation is interspersed among the data. A dichroic mirror layer between the holographic data and the servo data reflects the green laser while letting the red laser pass through. This prevents interference from refraction of the green laser off the servo data pits and is an advance over past holographic storage media, which either experienced too much interference, or lacked the servo data entirely, making them incompatible with current CD and DVD drive technology.

WMV HD file format

Windows Media High Definition Video is the marketing name for high definition videos encoded using Microsoft Windows Media Video 9 codecs. These low-complexity codecs make it possible to watch high definition movies in 1280×720 (720p) or 1920×1080 (1080p) resolutions on many modern personal computers running Microsoft Windows XP or Windows Vista, although the hardware requirements are steep. Microsoft's Xbox 360 and Sony's PlayStation 3 video game consoles can also play WMV HD.

Professional Disc

Professional Disc (PFD) is a digital recording optical disc format introduced by Sony in 2003 primarily for XDCAM, its new tapeless camcorder system. It was one of the first optical formats to utilize a blue laser, which allowed for a higher density of data to be stored on optical media compared to infrared laser technology used in the CD and red laser technology used in the DVD format.

Forward Versatile Disc

Forward Versatile Disc (FVD) is an offshoot of DVD developed in Taiwan jointly by the Advanced Optical Storage Research Alliance (AOSRA) and the Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI) as a less expensive alternative for high-definition content. The disc is similar in structure to a DVD, in that pit length is the same and a red laser is used to read it, but the track width has been shortened slightly to allow the disc to have 5.4 GB of storage per layer as opposed to 4.7 GB for a standard DVD. The specification allows up to three layers for total of 15 GB in storage. WMV9 is used as the video codec allowing for 135 minutes of 720p video on a dual layer disc and 135 minutes of 1080i video on a three-layer disc. FVD uses AACS copy protection which is one of the schemes used in both HD DVD and Blu-ray Discs.

The first attempt at producing pre-recorded HDTV media was a scarce Japanese analog MUSE-encoded laser disc which is no longer produced.

Comparison of high definition optical disc formats Wikimedia list article

This article compares the technical specifications of multiple high definition formats, including HD DVD and Blu-ray Disc; two mutually incompatible, high definition optical disc formats that, beginning in 2006, attempted to improve upon and eventually replace the DVD standard. The two formats remained in a format war until February 19, 2008 when Toshiba, HD DVD's creator, announced plans to cease development, manufacturing and marketing of HD DVD players and recorders.

Total Hi Def Disc, also called Total HD or THD, was a planned optical disc format that included both of the rival high-definition optical disc formats, Blu-ray Disc and HD DVD. It was officially announced January 8, 2007 at the Warner Bros. press conference held at CES 2007. One side was to contain a single or dual-layer Blu-ray Disc, and the other was to contain a single or dual-layer HD DVD.

Advanced Access Content System

The Advanced Access Content System (AACS) is a standard for content distribution and digital rights management, intended to restrict access to and copying of the post-DVD generation of optical discs. The specification was publicly released in April 2005 and the standard has been adopted as the access restriction scheme for HD DVD and Blu-ray Disc (BD). It is developed by AACS Licensing Administrator, LLC, a consortium that includes Disney, Intel, Microsoft, Panasonic, Warner Bros., IBM, Toshiba and Sony. AACS has been operating under an "interim agreement" since the final specification has not yet been finalized.

DVD Optical disc

DVD is a digital optical disc storage format invented and developed in 1995. The medium can store any kind of digital data and is widely used for software and other computer files as well as video programs watched using DVD players. DVDs offer higher storage capacity than compact discs while having the same dimensions.

Security of Advanced Access Content System

The security of Advanced Access Content System (AACS) has been a subject of discussion amongst security researchers, high definition video enthusiasts, and consumers at large since its inception. A successor to Content Scramble System(CSS), the digital rights management mechanism used by commercial DVDs, AACS was intended to improve upon the design of CSS by addressing flaws which had led to the total circumvention of CSS in 1999. The AACS system relies on a subset difference tree combined with a certificate revocation mechanism to ensure the security of high definition video content in the event of a compromise.

Although research into optical data storage has been ongoing for many decades, the first popular system was the Compact Disc, introduced in 1982, adapted from audio (CD-DA) to data storage with the 1985 Yellow Book, and re-adapted as the first mass market optical storage medium with CD-R and CD-RW in 1988. Compact Disc is still the de facto standard for audio recordings, although its place for other multimedia recordings and optical data storage has largely been superseded by DVD.

Advanced Content provides interactivity in the HD DVD optical disc format.

High-definition optical disc format war

The high-definition optical disc format war was between the Blu-ray and HD DVD optical disc standards for storing high-definition video and audio; it took place between 2006 and 2008 and was won by Blu-ray Disc.

DVD-Video consumer video format used to store digital video on DVD discs

DVD-Video is a consumer video format used to store digital video on DVD discs. DVD-Video was the dominant consumer home video format in Asia, North America, Europe, and Australia in the 2000s until it was supplanted by the high-definition Blu-ray Disc. Discs using the DVD-Video specification require a DVD drive and an MPEG-2 decoder. Commercial DVD movies are encoded using a combination MPEG-2 compressed video and audio of varying formats. Typically, the data rate for DVD movies ranges from 3 Mbit/s to 9.5 Mbit/s, and the bit rate is usually adaptive. DVD-Video was first available in Japan on November 1, 1996.


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