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Three HD Layers Today, Ten Layers Tomorrow 117

Posted by CowboyNeal
from the screw-everything-we're-going-eleven-layers dept.
Marcus Yam writes "While Toshiba has publicly announced its achievement of developing a triple-layer HD DVD-ROM (read only) disc with a capacity of 51 gigabytes, Ritek is disclosing behind closed doors at CES its own achievements in multi-layer HD optical media. Ritek claims to not only have been able to produce a three-layer and four-layer HD optical discs, but to have successfully designed HD media with a full 10 layers. The company says that its multi-layer process can be applied to both HD DVD and Blu-ray formats."
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Three HD Layers Today, Ten Layers Tomorrow

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  • Ritek is disclosing behind closed doors at CES its own achievements in multi-layer HD optical media.

    not any more!
  • 170 gigs per disk? Make it writeable/cheap and I'm on that train/boat/whatever.
    • by rolfwind (528248)
      Me too. But DVD-Rs were also supposed to be multi-layer and yet the only ones available are the single layer, so why will the HD-DVD market be different in that only commercial presses will be the only ones to make use of multiple layers for more storage?

      Indeed, my at home archival solution of 4.3 GB DVD-Rs is becoming painful just for my data. If I figure $25 dollars for a case of 50 DVD-Rs, I can archive about (4.3*200) 860GB for $100 which isn't including time spent burning and the hassle labeling/brin
      • by MustardMan (52102)
        What rock have you been hiding under? I have a dual layer dvd+/-r burner in my powermac. It came equipped with this drive well over a year ago when I bought it. And Apple was late to the game with dual layer burners. Dual layer media is still a bit expensive for my taste, so I usually use single layer discs - but it's certainly EASILY available. Go to any staples or best buy and you'll see tons of these things.
        • I have a dual layer dvd+/-r burner in my powermac. It came equipped with this drive well over a year ago when I bought it.

          You might want to double-check that drive of yours - chances are it only supports dual-layer DVD+R, not DVD-R like the OP was talking about. Dual-layer DVD-R discs are a much newer spec than DL DVD+R.
          • by MustardMan (52102)
            Dual layer dvd-r was introduced in 2005. It's not all that recent. That said, I can't check my powermac at the moment because I'm 800 miles away, and I don't recall the exact model of drive that shipped with the machine.
          • by CastrTroy (595695)
            That and the main problem is that you can buy dual layer disks, +/-/whatever, who cares, but they are 5 times the price of a single layer disc, so it's not that economical. It's a little more convenient, but most of the time 4.7 GB is enough space for your data.
            • It's a little more convenient, but most of the time 4.7 GB is enough space for your data.

              I have more than 160GB on my hdds. If I go through all of my files and delete those I think I may not need anymore I may be able to reduce my backup needs to 100GB, so I'd still need 20 single layer dvds to backup everything. And when I finally get a dslr camera my storage needs will be a lot higher. Now I realize not many people have these storage requirements, but there are some who do.

              Falcon

              • But for those storage needs a DL DVD isn't enough either, you need a lot of them either way. And given that the price per gigabyte is more than twice for DL DVD, it's an easy decision.

                BTW, I guess many of those files will not change any more, so if you archive them once (or maybe twice, to be sure), you can skip them in future backups (except if your media fails - with two backups, you then can just make a fresh copy of the non-failed media).
                • But for those storage needs a DL DVD isn't enough either, you need a lot of them either way. And given that the price per gigabyte is more than twice for DL DVD, it's an easy decision.

                  True, dl dvds will only cut the number of disks needed in half but it still reduces the number a lot.

                  BTW, I guess many of those files will not change any more, so if you archive them once (or maybe twice, to be sure), you can skip them in future backups (except if your media fails - with two backups, you then can just mak

              • by shabble (90296)

                It's a little more convenient, but most of the time 4.7 GB is enough space for your data.

                I have more than 160GB on my hdds. If I go through all of my files and delete those I think I may not need anymore I may be able to reduce my backup needs to 100GB, so I'd still need 20 single layer dvds to backup everything. And when I finally get a dslr camera my storage needs will be a lot higher. Now I realize not many people have these storage requirements, but there are some who do.

                Slightly related to this: Ho [guardian.co.uk]

                • If you want to know who'll win the high-def DVD war, it's the one which offers a writable version first. Geeks will leap on it for their hefty backups. It'll sell. And the market will take over. Meanwhile, I'll start saving up for that terabyte drive.

                  they already have burners [bestbuy.com] for sale, so i guess it's over?

                • Slightly related to this: How the terabyte drive could end the DVD wars [guardian.co.uk]

                  Two external drives, one stored offsite, like this would be a big help.

                  Falcon
      • Me too. But DVD-Rs were also supposed to be multi-layer and yet the only ones available are the single layer, so why will the HD-DVD market be different in that only commercial presses will be the only ones to make use of multiple layers for more storage?

        You can get double or dual layer dvd drives now. Unfortunately I've only been able to find any for Windows and Macs but none for Linux, which I have been looking for.

        Indeed, my at home archival solution of 4.3 GB DVD-Rs is becoming painful just for my

        • by dosquatch (924618)

          Also if you have a comprehensive backup plan [...]

          But for home users, anything that resembles a backup at all is typically a vast improvement over the nothing that tends to be done. Cloning your PC to a large external drive once a month and storing it in a fireproof lockbox is plenty secure enough for Joe Average.

        • You can get double or dual layer dvd drives now. Unfortunately I've only been able to find any for Windows and Macs but none for Linux, which I have been looking for.

          Linux drives are a software issue, not a hardware issue. See this doc [chalmers.se]. I have a standard dual layer drive on my linux box and it works fine reading dual layer disks or writing single layer disks, I just can't write dual layer disks.

          • Linux drives are a software issue, not a hardware issue. See this doc [chalmers.se]. I have a standard dual layer drive on my linux box and it works fine reading dual layer disks or writing single layer disks, I just can't write dual layer disks.

            I imagine it's the same with Lightscribe which allows you to print on the disk using the dvd drive.

            Falcon
            • Lightscribe has support from LightScribe themselves, no less. They even have an SDK you can download for Linux. Hell, I'm thinking about buying a LS drive just to support a company that's supporting Linux. See here [lightscribe.com].
              • Lightscribe has support from LightScribe themselves, no less. They even have an SDK you can download for Linux. Hell, I'm thinking about buying a LS drive just to support a company that's supporting Linux. See here [lightscribe.com].

                Thats for the link, now I know where to look to get Lightscribe working when I finally find a dl dvd drive.

                Falcon
    • 170 gigs per disk? Make it writeable/cheap and I'm on that train/boat/whatever.

      Make them rewritable and cost not much more than wr disks are now and I'll board. Ooh and have a driver for Linux.

      Falcon
  • Ritek? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by eric76 (679787) on Thursday January 11, 2007 @08:36PM (#17567116)
    10 layer DVDs from Ritek?

    When I've seen lists of various qualities of CDs, Ritek was usually near the bottom.

    I wonder how they rank on DVDs. I've used Ritek DVD+RW and never had more problems with them than other DVD+RW media.
    • Re:Ritek? (Score:4, Informative)

      by excelblue (739986) on Thursday January 11, 2007 @10:28PM (#17568170) Homepage
      Many of the lists are just quite picky. If you take a look, most of the good ones are extremely hard to obtain. Of all the ones you could easily find, Ritek is probably one of the best of them (with the exception of Taiyo Yuden).

      Their CDs come in about the quality of their DVD+RW's - that is, although they're not made to the quality of the best CDs, they rarely fail. Out of a spindle of 100 Ritek's, I get an average of about 2-3 coasters. Compare that with the average of 10-20 coasters per 100 of CMC's, or even more with the Moser Baer ones.

      So, they're not that bad of a company. When comparing media that you could generally find anywhere, they're quite close to the top.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by greylion3 (555507)
        When choosing which media to buy, you have to take your DVD-burner into account.
        I did that, and ended up buying Memorex 8x DVD-R with mediacode CMC MAG AE1, for my Hivision DRW3S121 (which is really a LiteOn 1213S with a slightly different firmware).

        I bought 200 of them, I have burned 110 or so by now, and I've had ZERO coasters. Of course, they were all burned with dvd+rw-tools in Linux(Debian), which might be why I have such good "mileage" with DVD-burning.

        This website; http://www.videohelp.com/dvdmedia [videohelp.com] w
    • by rbanffy (584143)
      They must be write-only disks
  • by timmarhy (659436) on Thursday January 11, 2007 @08:40PM (#17567152)
    another tech company crying to investment. take careful notice of the wording "designed" meaning they haven't made one yet.
  • by kjots (64798) * on Thursday January 11, 2007 @08:41PM (#17567170)

    While Toshiba has publicly announced its achievement of developing a triple-layer HD DVD-ROM (read only) disc...

    Wow, a read-only ROM. Who'da thunk it?

    </deadpan-mode>

  • Wow! (Score:1, Offtopic)

    by creimer (824291)
    That's a lot of monkey spanking porn to put on ten layers. Is there enough? :P
  • by thedarknite (1031380) on Thursday January 11, 2007 @08:46PM (#17567232) Homepage
    FTA
    "Ritek claims to not only have been able to produce a three-layer and four-layer HD optical discs, but to have successfully designed HD media with a full 10 layers."

    "While those numbers do sound impressive, Ritek officials point out that the real barrier to this advancement is the lack of reader and writer laser diode technology to support the additional eight layers above the current standard."

    I feel that the phrase I've highlighted kind of diminish their announcement. The summary implied to me that they were already able to prototype these new discs
    • Bah, it's easy to make a ten layer optical disk if you don't have to worry about the reader. Why all you need is ten regular disks, a ten ton press, some heat, and a can of soda (for refreshment purposes while you wait).
  • by meta-monkey (321000) on Thursday January 11, 2007 @08:50PM (#17567280) Journal
    Combined with this story [slashdot.org], I declare today, Thursday, January 11th 2007 to be the greatest news day in /. history.
  • by Constantine XVI (880691) <[moc.liamg] [ta] [todhsals+ythgie.hsart]> on Thursday January 11, 2007 @08:51PM (#17567288)
    What on earth happened to thinking like "640k ought to be enough for anybody"? Sometimes I think that rapid advances like this hurt programmers. If we have 100 GB discs, what encouragement do we have to make movies in 2160p that fit in 15 GB?

    Making the box bigger makes it harder to think outside the box. Being unable to think outside the box kills creativity.
    • by geekoid (135745)
      If the box keeps getting bigger, eventually the walls don't matter.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Jerf (17166)
      Excuse me, did you just complain about movie bloat?

      If this is some sort of troll, you need to make it less plausible. This is Slashdot.

      If this is serious, you need to be slapped around a bit.

      Either way, I got a belly laugh out of it, so thanks.
    • by westlake (615356)
      If we have 100 GB discs, what encouragement do we have to make movies in 2160p that fit in 15 GB? Making the box bigger makes it harder to think outside the box. Being unable to think outside the box kills creativity

      Don't underestimate the "bandwidth" of FedEx. Cheaper delivery to the home than fiber.

      The audience doesn't go shopping for the programmer's bleeding-edge tech. The audience goes shopping for a movie.

    • by EvilIdler (21087)
      > what encouragement do we have to make movies in 2160p that fit in 15 GB?

      The maximum amount of data we can transfer per second from those units.
      I've read everywhere that current HD DVD drives are slower than DVDs, and you're
      limited by USB/Firewire speeds anyway for some upcoming computer-connectable players.
    • by dosquatch (924618)

      Making the box bigger makes it harder to think outside the box. Being unable to think outside the box kills creativity.

      [vox Yoda]Lack of creativity leads to prophecies of doom, and such prophecies are tools of the Dark Side.[/vox]

      Come off it, you're seriously suggesting that better tools stifle creativity? Increases in storage space are a Good Thing. The ideal (as anybody who works regularly with digital photos or video will tell you) is uncompressed. No loss, no artifacts, much easier to work with... the only drawback is large files. Huge files. MASSIVE files. Compression doesn't exist because it is a good idea for its

  • I think Cowboy Neal was paying homage to my favorite Onion article [theonion.com] ever, with the dept title "screw-everything-we're-going-eleven-layers dept". Read it, the article is great.
    • by Cappy Red (576737)
      Possible. (Great article by the way. :)

      I think that taking anything from ten and making it go to eleven has to be a Spinal Tap reference. Why? Because it's one higher, isn't it?
  • 10 Layers? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by nick_davison (217681) on Thursday January 11, 2007 @08:56PM (#17567316)
    And all I want are two... One blu-ray, one HD-DVD, both on the same disk. Then this whole stupid war can finish already.
    • Re:10 Layers? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by timeOday (582209) on Thursday January 11, 2007 @09:09PM (#17567462)
      They can dump both HD-DVD *and* Blu-Ray, for all I care, and movies in general. Just give me a reliable, high-capacity, cheap removable storage for my own data. Coupling the storage media with the content just turns it into a food fight between huge companies, and makes it ten times harder to move from one format to a superior one.
      • Coupling the storage media with the content just turns it into a food fight between huge companies, and makes it ten times harder to move from one format to a superior one.

        Catch-22. If the content is not tied to a media (or is it the other way around), then that media will not likely be popular enough to become affordable. There are lots of optical formats that simply flopped, the only ones that have become affordable are CD and DVD.
        • by timeOday (582209)
          Catch-22. If the content is not tied to a media (or is it the other way around), then that media will not likely be popular enough to become affordable.
          Hard drives seem to do just fine.
    • by ganjadude (952775)
      Its on the way in the form of total HD http://www.pcworld.com/article/id,128494-pg,1/arti cle.html [pcworld.com]
    • by frieko (855745)
      Ah yes, that's what I want. I want the freedom to pay two different sets of patent royalties every time I buy a movie. That'll show those greedy corporations...
  • Ritek Quality (Score:5, Informative)

    by BillGatesLoveChild (1046184) on Thursday January 11, 2007 @08:57PM (#17567330) Journal
    Someone asked about Ritek's media quality. There is a huge variance in quality of recordable media. Usually you don't find out until you lose an archive :-o. Ritek aren't the worst, but they're not the best either. Check this link:

    http://www.digitalfaq.com/media/dvdmedia.htm [digitalfaq.com]

    51 Gbs is better, but still far short of my 320Gb HDDs for backup (and I've got 1Tb of disks). A losing battle. Maybe Blockbuster will just give up and fill the ailes with Seagates to rent by the evening?

    • "Never underestimate the bandwidth of a station wagon full of tapes hurtling down the highway." -- Tanenbaum, Andrew S. (1996). Computer Networks. New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, 83. ISBN 0-13-349945-6.

      Damn, I just did the calculation today, and I can fit 124.55 TB of DVDs in the back of my Jeep without removing the seat. The 750GB and 1TB 3.5" hard drives make that number go up. Now I have to re-do the calculation using 4-layer and 10-layer HD DVD media? When will this madness end?

      Unfortunately, hard d

    • I think HDD's will be best for you for some time to come.

      However, if someone can put an entire season of 24 onto one hi-def disc someday, I'll be most impressed.
      • Could be fun to watch how Anime distributors in the US respond (Hi, A.D.)

        They string out a 13 or 26 part series into as many DVDs as possible. The first DVD in the series fits 5 x 30 min episodes. But towards the end they can only fit 2 x 30 minute episodes. Ripoff is the only word I can use. I stopped my Neon Genesis Platinum set halfway through. I was going to pay $180 for the thing anyway. When they stretched it out to over $200, well, enough is enough.

        If they could fit an entire series on a single d

        • by Tony Hoyle (11698)
          The original star trek: the next generation series was 2 episodes per DVD - OTOH that was the early days of DVD production.

          The Simpsons originally did the same (3 episodes per DVD).

          You can guarantee that the TV companies will continue this tradition with HD.

  • by Anonymous Coward
    This is only the beginning. Imagine, if you will, beowulf layers of hi-def porn...
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Nigel Tuffnel today announced that all his HD DVD ROMS go to 11.
  • Which, considering the current state of U.S. patent law, might be every bit as accurate...

  • by Flwyd (607088)
    Who will be the first to implement a DVD with enough layers to implement the OSI network model?
  • by Wesley Felter (138342) <wesley@felter.org> on Thursday January 11, 2007 @09:52PM (#17567820) Homepage
    The HD-DVD spec was finalized a while ago. HD-DVD players can only read two layers, therefore no movie can ever have more than two layers. All this talk about more layers is just PR wanking.
    • HD-DVD players can only read two layers, therefore no movie can ever have more than two layers.

      No movie disc conforming to the HD-DVD spec can have required data on more than two layers. But there's always the possibility that the HD-DVD spec could be abandoned altogether for a newer specification that allows an arbitrary number of layers per disc.

      There could even be "HD-DVD Plus" discs that have HD-DVD standard content on layers 0 and 1, and then premium content on layers 2 and up that can only be accesse
      • by Thraxen (455388)
        I hope not. It's bad enough that we have a BR vs HD-DVD war, if they start adding layers and making early adopter equipment partially obsolete the market will suffer further.
  • These companies are just trying to show off to one another. They don't have the capacity to mass-produce them, I bet, either. Once available, due to the fact that light just doesn't get so small so easily, they will probably cost a few thousand dollars per disk. Readers are another story. Nobody needs them, they're completely implausible, so I just say: SHUT THE HELL UP, WE DON'T CARE WHAT A FEW WACKO SCIENTISTS AT YOUR COMPANIES CAN SAY! If they foucused on quality, rather than bragging, far more re
  • A machine that makes $25.00 coasters, instead of $0.25.
  • by AusG4 (651867) on Thursday January 11, 2007 @10:19PM (#17568066) Homepage Journal
    There really is no three layer HD-DVD media. It's not part of the standard. They don't expect it to be a part of the standard until the end of 2008 at the earliest. Even still, Toshiba would likely need to decide between making current players obsolete, or reserving three layer HD-DVD for 'desktop' purposes, like backup and data storage.

    This technology isn't likely going to ship with any Hollywood movies on it anytime soon.
    • by iainl (136759)
      The tech isn't going to ship with any Hollywood movies on it anytime soon because the amount of space used by the main movie on a dual-layer HD-DVD is currently going down (due to improvements in the encoder) faster than its going up due to decisions to tackle longer movies. We've already passed the point where The Return Of The King: Extended Edition leaves enough space for a fair smattering of extras; what more do you want?
      • by AusG4 (651867)
        Not true. First, there is no Lord of the Rings for HD-DVD. It hasn't even been announced. Furthermore, movies like Reds, which are longer in run time, come on two HD-DVD's - one for movie, one for extras. As does Mission Imposssible III and it's a standard 120 minutes - they just wanted a great encoding of the movie and they did so by dumping all extras.

        What you've said is not correct at all.

        Blu-ray disc, at dual layer, is in a better position for this. 30GB for a movie (a single double layer HD-DVD worth)
        • by iainl (136759)
          M:i:III certainly is on two discs because the extras that aren't at 1080p are in MPEG-2. Isn't the Blu-Ray on two 25Gb discs, too? Certainly, as I remember it one of the two formats had to go to two discs, and so they put the other one a two-disc set just because Paramount realise that the average consumer thinks "Two Disc Set" means better value, even when everything would squeeze onto one disc if you tried; you see this all the time with DVD.

          I'm correct about the video bitrate for Potter; it really is tha
  • It's one thing to have a prototype 10 layer disk, another to be able to read it, and another to write to it, another to be able to mass produce it and another *actually* mass produce it, and the required readers/writers.

    We had 10 layer DVD-s too years ago, but not surprisingly, non of them made it out "in the wild".
  • by professorfalcon (713985) on Friday January 12, 2007 @01:36AM (#17569678)
    Maybe they should go with the pizza pricing model: a base price for one layer, and $1.99 for each additional layer. Discount if you get a salad with it.
  • I'm reminded of the 1975 Saturday Night Live parody commercial about a three-bladed razor, "The Remco triple-track. Because You'll Believe Anything!".
    • I'm reminded of the 1975 Saturday Night Live parody commercial about a three-bladed razor

      Tech advances always give marketing a chance to get into these sort of competitions. The fact that at least three razor manufacturers not market triple blade razors for real makes it even funnier to watch this parody today.

      Interestingly enough a four blade and then a FIVE blade razor came out in 2005, so SNL decided to pay homage to the old parody 30 years later with a commercial about an EIGHT blade razor...it would "
      • by dosquatch (924618)

        Interestingly enough a four blade and then a FIVE blade razor came out in 2005, so SNL decided to pay homage to the old parody 30 years later with a commercial about an EIGHT blade razor...it would "strip you to the bone in one pass"!

        Bah, only 8? [google.com]

  • by lateid (1044716)
    i have a ffeling this could be used to render hologram-like stuff :D
  • You want to store 200 gigs on a single, open-to-the-elements, unprotected piece of plastic? What happens when it's scratched, I wonder...

    At the prices they're selling at today, I'd rather use a portable HDD. They had better come up with some nuclear blast resistant protection for these discs.
    • by Palal (836081)
      I agree. It's bad with hard drives now, but if we also have it with discs, I just don't see how we could reliably store data without having to have it in multiple places. I guess it also depends on the importance of whatever piece of data we're talking about, but still the average user will not make x copies of data just to store it and in the end s/he will be faced with a data recovery problem at some point. If they're making discs that are that big, can they at least make data recovery easier? One simpl
    • by clickclickdrone (964164) on Friday January 12, 2007 @05:53AM (#17571226)
      >What happens when it's scratched, I wonder
      You lose 8 movies, 3200 MP3s and 6800 photos. On the plus side, you still have another 314 movies, 789,543 MP3s and 142,323 photos.
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by liftphreaker (972707)
        That brings me to another point - write speeds. I can imagine how pleasant it would be for the early adopters, with 1x or 2x write speeds :) Start the burn, go on your annual vacation, and it's done when you're back. Muwahahaha.
  • This was planned for release at the end of 2000 by a company by the name of C-3d. It was called 'FMD':

    "The first generation of disc productions from Constellation 3D will be a family of 120 mm multi-layer FM-discs with capacity up to 140 GBytes and with read speed up to 1 GBytes/s."
    http://www.digit-life.com/articles/3ddisk/ [digit-life.com]
    • Yep. I was going to post the same thing, although C3D actually had a working prototype supposedly.
  • http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=215866&cid=17 5 31984 [slashdot.org]

    What the fuck are they doing?!
    The drives are OUT, the discs are OUT - they are in the hands of the public.

    STOP dicking around with the spec gentlemen, it's over! - put the new features in "Super HD - DVD" and "Super Blu Ray" in 10 years time, don't piss around with already released "standards" - or should we simply not take your "standards" seriously?

    HD-DVD and BluRay - looks to be pretty much a beta product to me.....

    Sigh.
  • Pfft. They're only up to 10?

    Tell me when they take it to 11.

  • So one day, eventually, maybe, we'll see HD-DVDs as big as a current Blu-Ray disc?

    And HD-DVD is doing so well why? I don't care about movies - I want a Blu-Ray burner!
  • Just you wait! The industry will tremble when I release the new GB-DVD format in a couple of months. It'll hold TWELVE layers of information, be made of pure light, and will ward off Zombie attack*



    *Claims of undead repellant not approved or endorsed by the FDA and are not scientificly proven.

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