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Blu-ray Group Completes 3D Spec

The Blu-ray Disc Association has released what it calls its “Blu-ray 3D” specification—a technical parameter engineered by CE and computer makers, as well as by Hollywood studios and other content providers.

Release of the spec in the midst of widespread attention to 3D in theaters (especially the release of the heavily hyped “Avatar” this month) is expected to propel the further development of CE devices to display 3D movies and videos from Blu-ray Disc titles on HD (1080p) television sets in the home environment.

According to the BDA, the spec is display-agnostic: A wide array of Blu-ray 3D products will deliver three-dimensional images “to any compatible 3D display, regardless of whether that display uses LCD, plasma or other technology, and regardless of what 3D technology the display uses to deliver the image to the viewer's eyes.”

The new spec, which will be available soon, encodes 3D video using the Multiview Video Coding codec (an extension to the ITU-T H.264 Advanced Video Coding codec now supported by all Blu-ray players). MPEG4-MVC compresses left- and right-eye views with a typical 50 percent overhead (compared to 2D content). The spec also includes enhanced graphic features to enable 3D navigation.

The spec also will support 2D discs (Blu-ray 1080p, sans 3D) in future 3D players.