As more and more consumers move to high-definition (HD) plasma and LCD televisions, their tolerance for low-resolution DVDs will significantly diminish. DVDs on the market currently hold only 4.7 gigabytes (GB) of data. The maximum resolution achieved on a DVD is 720-by-480. With a high-definition resolution of 1,920-by-1,080, DVDs just do not compare. Fortunately, two technologies, Blu-ray and DVD, promise to transform the DVD from low-resolution to a high-definition format. Both of these technologies utilize blue lasers instead of the traditional red lasers to achieve higher resolution. Although promising, both technologies have their advantages and disadvantages (Kaplan, 2004).
The technology Blu-ray and DVD use is based on using blue lasers instead of red ones. Blue lasers have a wavelength of 405 nanometers while red lasers have a wavelength of 650. The shorter wavelength of blue lasers allows the laser to focus on a smaller spot on the DVD enabling more storage. More storage is necessary because HD video can easily approach 200 megabytes (MB) per minute. DVDs are expected to hold about two hours of HD video
Blu-ray technology is very promising because it can hold up to ten times more than a regular DVD. Using dual layers, a Blu-ray Disc can hold as much as 50GB. Blu-ray’s plans for copy protection call for a standard more secure than CSS, which is the current copy protection for DVDs (Kaplan, 2004). Furthermore, there are already plans for computer variations of Blu-ray including BD-ROM, BD-RW, and BD-R. With its 50GB capacity, Blu-ray can help Hollywood studios dwarf the current features on DVDs, as well as help video game manufacturers make more elaborate games (Labriola, 2004).
Blu-ray is not without its disadvantages, however. Blu-ray has been criticized for jumping to a completely new technology in relation to traditional DVDs. Blu-ray uses a new structure of disc, creating the need for a... [continues]
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