20 GB Red Laser DVD Unveiled

Don't give up on Red Laser disc technology yet. A Brooklyn-based technology company has announced a new version of the technology that allows storage of up to 20 GB of data, more than twice as much as what the technology can currently hold and giving Blu-ray and HD-DVD a run for their money.

Based on Red Laser DVD industrial technology, the pre-recorded VMD (Versatile MultiLayer Disc) has four layers on one side, with a 20GB capacity. By fall 2005, the manufacturer--New Media Enterprises--expects to launch 15GB, 20GB, 25GB and 30GB discs and drives.

VMDs have built-in copyright protection and are designed for viewing HD content. Prerecorded HD VMDs have a 40Mbps bit rate and are able to play HD movies and other video content. Users do not need to buy a new playing device; the VMD player is backward compatible with DVDs and CDs.

Future plans include pre-production 30GB VMDs with 60Mbps bit rates by spring 2005 and by 2006 NME anticipates that they will be producing 50GB VMDs on Red Laser for HDTV and Digital Cinema.

NME is also developing Blue Laser VMD systems that can hold 1TB of digital cinema and VOD content.