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HD DVD adopts Thomson's Film Grain technology

Thomson has developed a new technology to reproduce the original grain structure in high-definition video presentations.

In cooperation with SMPTE, DVD Forum selected Film Grain technology for mandatory inclusion in HD DVD products. The technology enables film grain that is extracted before content is compressed to be recreated during playback.

All HD DVD players will be manufactured with integrated Film Grain technology, notably RCA's HDV5000, Toshiba's HD-A1 and HD-XA1, and Microsoft's Xbox 360 HD DVD player.

Thomson's Film Grain technology can be embedded in broadcast and home theater playout devices. Broadcasters maximize bandwidth; packaged media content creators gain disk space; and viewers see movies that match the filmmaker's intent, promoters of the technology say. It is can be deployed with H.264 compression and can be adapted to support other compression solutions.

Thomson said Film Grain technology also has significant artistic applications beyond the delivery process. It can be used in post production to add the look and feel of conventional film to digitally captured or rendered imagery.

Broadcom's BCM7411D and Horizon Semiconductor's Hz100 and Hz300 are integrated circuits that will incorporate Film Grain technology. Sigma Designs will soon offer an IC solution. Sonic Solutions is integrating Film Grain technology in its HD DVD production tools. NVIDIA is building hardware for its advanced line of Quadro Graphic Processing Units, and InterVideo and CyberLink are integrating the technology into their personal computer HD DVD players.

The Film Grain technology specification is available on the SMPTE Web site at