The Digital Video Disk Forum in Tokyo, Japan announced this week that it has finalized specifications for a write-once disk offering compatibility with DVD-Video and ROM formats. The newly-announced DVD-R offers a 3.95Gb single-sided storage capacity and a simplified read-write optical system. As well as providing enhanced support for the development of DVD titles, the disk will work as a key authoring tool for the professional market. According to the Forum, it will allow developers to produce and verify DVD software titles and assure their compatibility with the DVD-ROM and DVD-Video standards. The forum consists of 10 electronic companies from around the world including Hitachi Ltd, Toshiba Corp and Philips NV. Since a basic agreement on the format was reached in April, more than 20 hardware and storage media manufacturers have been working to confirm the format’s compatibility with existing DVD formats. The working group has also said it will start discussions on the format for a next-generation 4.7Gb DVD-R. This larger capacity disk is expected to offer greater versatility. The DVD Forum will support wider use by studying a DVD-R copyright protection system. Main features of the format version 1.0 are a recordable optical disk with a single-sided capacity of 3.95Gb, six times the capacity of a CD-R, and a double-sided capacity of 7.9Gb; a simple configuration of optical systems so that the mechanism doesn’t need a magnetic recording head; and as DVD-R has the same physical specifications and format as a read-only DVD, it can be played back on DVD-Video players and DVD-ROM drives on the market.
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