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January 8, 2004
"Hi-MD" Format Established:
The Music Recording MD Format Has Evolved into a Versatile Recording Media for the Broadband Era
"Hi-MD" Realizes a Maximum Recording Time of up to 45 Hours of Music, and Raises the Potential for Versatile Storage
January 8, 2003, Tokyo, Japan - Sony Corporation today announced the development of "Hi-MD," marking an evolution of the music recording MD format into a versatile recording media that also delivers PC data such as images and text file recording capabilities, while maintaining playback compatibility with the current MD products and ensuring copyright security.
Since the introduction of the first "digital audio" MD products that enabled random access and easy editing, Sony has provided users with a variety of MD compatible products for various applications such as home audio products, portable devices and in-car systems.
The MD format is licensed by approximately 80 hardware/media manufacturing companies. Cumulative shipments of MD media and compatible products are expected to reach approximately 1.1 billion and 80 million respectively as of the end of fiscal year 2003. (Data by Sony)
With the introduction of "Hi-MD," Sony is poised to meet the demands of a growing broadband era with a versatile media capable of recording a variety of content, such as music and images, while maintaining high quality sound and resolution.
"Hi-MD" Format Main Features
1) High Capacity by Hi-Density Recording Technology
Through modification of modulation and error correction methods, and greater signal processing efficiency, high-density and high-capacity recording has been achieved. By formatting existing MDs into "Hi-MD" format, disc density can be approximately doubled (up to 300MB approximately in the case of an 80-minute MD). Furthermore the 1GB "Hi-MD" disc is the first of its type to incorporate Domain Wall Displacement Detection (DWDD) technology, leading to a maximum recording time of up to 45 hours for music data.
Domain Wall Displacement Detection (DWDD) technology:
The size of readable recording marks on an optical or a magneto-optical disc depends on the spot size of a laser. Until now, it has been necessary to reduce the spot size of a laser beam in order to read out small recording marks for increasing the disc's recording density. DWDD applies a kind of Magnetic Super Resolution (MSR) technology that utilizes the temperature variation created by an irradiating laser on a disc surface in order to temporarily expand recording marks smaller than a laser beam spot and read out the stored information.
2) High Quality Sound Recording and Playback
"Hi-MD" incorporates ATRAC3plus high compression and sound quality audio compression technology, realizing extended length, near CD quality sound. By also adopting a non-compressible, linear PCM recording, "Hi-MD" compatible products enable users to enjoy the recording and playback of high-quality sound, equal to the quality of commercial audio CDs.
3) High Compatibility with PC
"Hi-MD" uses the FAT file system, making it possible to use "Hi-MD" formatted MDs and 1GB "Hi-MD" discs as versatile media for recording PC data files, such as images and text. Furthermore, as portable, rewritable PC media, "Hi-MD" complies with USB format's Mass Storage Class, ensuring that simply by connecting a "Hi-MD" product to a PC it is immediately recognized as an external storage device.
4) Copyright Protection Technology
To prevent an illegal copying of digital content, "Hi-MD" incorporates OpenMG and MagicGate technology, already adopted in Memory Stick and Net MD for content management to ensure that music content stored on a "Hi-MD" disc will be encrypted. "Hi-MD" also conforms to the Serial Copy Management System (SCMS).
* "Hi-MD" "OpenMG" "MagicGate", and "ATRAC3plus" are registered trademarks or trademarks of Sony Corporation.