Toshiba, Memory-Tech Expand to 3-Layer TWIN Disc

Toshiba and Memory-Tech, two firms that have worked on DVD joint ventures in the past, have notched up their TWIN format disc format with their latest innovation: a three-layer, one-sided disc compatible with both standard DVD and next-gen HD DVD players. (The companies' earlier product was a two-layer configuration.)

The newer discs can hold two layers of HD DVD and one layer of DVD, or vice versa--thereby enabling movie studios and other content providers the ability to market two format versions of each title in the same package, for playback on a standard DVD player or new HD DVD unit.

Both HD DVD and Blu-ray players can play standard discs, but HD-quality playback is only possible with HD monitors.

Memory-Tech, based in Tokyo, said the three-layer disc can support up to 30 GB of HD DVD and 4.7 GB of standard DVD. HD DVD lead advocate Toshiba reportedly plans to submit specs for the three-layer configuration to the DVD Forum for official approval, and hopes to ship the new discs starting in early 2007.