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This technical report concerns about the new, recently incoming technology, the foundation and development of which could result in the enormous turn in our life. Blue technology, blue light, blue lasers and light emitting diodes. The one of the pivotal reasons for to create this document is to spread the idea of a new technology.
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“Blu-ray Disc is a HD Format Entertainment Media (also known as Blu-ray or BD) is an optical disc storage medium designed to supersede the standard DVD format. Its main uses are for storing high-definition video, PlayStation 3 games, and other data, with up to 25 GB per single layered, and 50 GB per dual layered disc. The disc has the same physical dimensions as standard DVDs and CDs.
The name Blu-ray Disc derives from the blue-violet laser used to read the disc. While a standard DVD uses a 650 nanometre red laser, Blu-ray uses a shorter wavelength, a 405 nm blue-violet laser, and allows for almost six times more data storage than on a DVD.
Blu-ray Disc was developed by the Blu-ray Disc Association, a group representing makers of consumer electronics, computer hardware, and motion pictures. As of June 2009, more than 1000 Blu-ray disc titles are available in Australia, 2500 in Japan, 1500 in the United Kingdom, and 2500 in the United States and Canada.
Commercial HDTV sets began to appear in the consumer market around 1998, but there was no commonly accepted, inexpensive way to record or play HD content. In fact, there was no medium with the storage required to accommodate HD codecs, except for JVC’s Digital VHS and Sony’s HDCAM. Nevertheless, it was well-known that using lasers with shorter wavelengths would enable optical storage with higher density. Shuji Nakamura (on the photo) invented the practical blue laser diode; it was a sensation, although a lengthy patent lawsuit delayed commercial introduction.
Sony started two projects applying the new diodes: UDO (Ultra Density Optical), and DVR Blue (together with Pioneer), a format of rewritable discs that would eventually become Blu-ray Disc (more specifically, BD-RE).The core technologies of the formats are essentially similar.
The first DVR Blue prototypes were unveiled at the CEATEC exhibition in October 2000. On February 19, 2002, the project was officially announced as Blu-ray, and Blu-ray Disc Founders was founded by the nine initial members.
The first consumer device was in stores on April 10, 2003. This device was the Sony BDZ-S77, a BD-RE recorder that was made available only in Japan. The recommended price was US$3800; however, there was no standard for prerecorded video, and no movies were released for this player. The Blu-ray Disc standard was still years away, as a newer, more secure DRM (Digital rights management) system was needed before Hollywood studios would accept it-not wanting to repeat the failure of the Content Scramble System used on standard DVDs. On October 4, 2004, the Blu-ray Disc Founders was officially changed to the Blu-ray Disc Association (BDA), and 20th Century Fox joined the BDA’s Board of Directors
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Blu-ray Disc format finalized
The Blu-ray Disc physical specifications were completed in 2004. In January 2005, TDK announced that they had developed a hard coating polymer for Blu-ray Discs. The cartridges, no longer necessary, were scrapped. The BD-ROM specifications were finalized in early 2006. AACS LA, a consortium founded in 2004, had been developing the DRM platform that could be used to securely distribute movies to consumers. However, the final AACS standard was delayed, and then delayed again when an important member of the Blu-ray Disc group voiced concerns. At the request of the initial hardware manufacturers, including Toshiba, Pioneer, and Samsung, an interim standard was published that did not include some features, such as managed copy.
Launch and sales developments
The first BD-ROM players were shipped in mid-June 2006, though HD DVD players beat them in the race to the market by a few months.
The first Blu-ray Disc titles were released on June 20, 2006. The earliest releases used MPEG-2 video compression, the same method used on standard DVDs. The first releases using the newer VC-1 and AVC codecs were introduced in September 2006. The first movies using (50 GB) dual-layer discs were introduced in October 2006. The first audio-only release was made in March 2008.
The first mass-market Blu-ray Disc rewritable drive for the PC was the BWU-100A, released by Sony on July 18, 2006. It recorded both single- and dual-layer BD-R as well as BD-RE discs and had a suggested retail price of US $699.
Single layer capacity
Dual layer capacity
Standard disc size
12 cm, single-sided
25 GB / 23866 MiB / 25025314816 B
50 GB / 47732 MiB / 50050629632 B
Mini disc size
8 cm, single-sided
7.8 GB / 7430 MiB / 7791181824 B
15.6 GB / 148605 MiB / 15582363648 B
High-definition video may be stored on Blu-ray ROM discs with up to 1920Ã-1080 pixel resolution at up to 60 frames per second interlaced or 24 frames per second progressive
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MPEG-4 AVC / SMPTE VC-1 only
MPEG-4 AVC / SMPTE VC-1 only
Laser ray specifications
Blu-ray Disc uses a “blue” (technically violet) laser, operating at a wavelength of 405 nm, to read and write data. Conventional DVDs and CDs use red and near-infrared lasers, at 650 nm and 780 nm, respectively.
The blue-violet laser’s shorter wavelength makes it possible to store more information on a 12 cm CD/DVD-size disc. The minimum “spot size” on which a laser can be focused is limited by diffraction, and depends on the wavelength of the light and the numerical aperture of the lens used to focus it. By decreasing the wavelength, increasing the numerical aperture from 0.60 to 0.85, and making the cover layer thinner to avoid unwanted optical effects, the laser beam can be focused to a smaller spot. This allows more information to be stored in the same area. For Blu-ray Disc, the spot size is 580 nm. In addition to the optical improvements, Blu-ray Discs feature improvements in data encoding that further increase the capacity
hard-coating of the pickup surface was chosen instead. TDK was the first company to develop a working scratch-protection coating for Blu-ray Discs. It was named Durabis. In addition, both Sony and Panasonic’s replication methods include proprietary hard-coat technologies. Sony’s rewritable media are spin-coated, using a scratch-resistant and antistatic coating. Verbatim’s recordable and rewritable Blu-ray Discs use their own proprietary hard-coat technology, called ScratchGuard.
All Blu-Ray Disc media is required to use hard-coating. DVD media is not required to be scratch-resistant.
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Write time for Blu-ray Disc (minutes)
* On August 8, 2008, Japanese electronics company Buffalo announced that it will ship the first 8Ã- Blu-ray burners in Japan starting in September 2008. On September 22, 2008, Buffalo announced one internal and one external 8Ã- Blu-ray burner for the United States, to be released the same month. The following day, Sony announced the BWU-300S, an internal 8Ã- Blu-ray burner for the United States.
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The BD-ROM specification mandates certain codec compatibilities for both hardware decoders (players) and movie software (content). For video, all players are required to support MPEG-2 Part 2, H.264/MPEG-4 AVC, and SMPTE VC-1. MPEG-2 is the codec used on regular DVDs, which allows backwards compatibility. MPEG-4 AVC was developed by MPEG and VCEG. VC-1 is a codec that was mainly developed by Microsoft. BD-ROM titles with video must store video using one of the three mandatory codecs; multiple codecs on a single title are allowed.
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The choice of codecs affects the producer’s licensing/royalty costs as well as the title’s maximum run time, due to differences in compression efficiency. Discs encoded in MPEG-2 video typically limit content producers to around two hours of high-definition content on a single-layer (25 GB) BD-ROM. The more-advanced video codecs (VC-1 and MPEG-4 AVC) typically achieve a video run time twice that of MPEG-2, with comparable quality.
For users recording digital television programming, the recordable Blu-ray Disc standard’s initial data rate of 36 Mbit/s is more than adequate to record high-definition broadcasts from any source (IPTV, cable/satellite, or terrestrial). BD Video movies have a maximum data transfer rate of 54 Mbit/s, a maximum AV bitrate of 48 Mbit/s (for both audio and video data), and a maximum video bitrate of 40 Mbit/s. This compares to HD DVD movies, which have a maximum data transfer rate of 36 Mbit/s, a maximum AV bitrate of 30.24 Mbit/s, and a maximum video bitrate of 29.4 Mbit/s.
Audio, video and other streams are multiplexed and stored on Blu-ray Video discs in a container format based on the MPEG-2 Transport stream. It is also known as BDAV MPEG-2 transport stream and can use filename extension .m2ts. Blu-ray Disc Video use MPEG-2 transport streams, compared to DVD’s program streams. This allows multiple video programs to be stored in the same file so they can be played back simultaneously (e.g. with “Picture in picture” effect).
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Blu-ray Discs may be encoded with a region code (intended to restrict the area of the world in which they can be played), similar in principle to the DVD region codes, although the geographical regions used differ. Blu-ray Disc players sold in a certain region may only play discs encoded for that region. This is primarily used for market segmentation or price discrimination, but it also allows motion picture studios to control the various aspects of a release (including content and release date) according to the region. Discs may also be produced without region coding; these can be played on all devices. The countries of the major Blu-ray manufacturers (Japan, Malaysia, South Korea, etc.) are in the same region as the Americas. As of late 2008, almost 70% of all released discs were region-free.In the Blu-ray region coding system, the United States is placed in region A, while regions B and C are used for countries that can experience localization delays before U.S.
Digital rights management
DRM is a generic term that refers to access control technologies that can be used by hardware manufacturers, publishers, copyright holders and individuals to try to impose limitations on the usage of digital content and devices. The term is used to describe any technology which inhibits uses (legitimate or otherwise) of digital content that were not desired or foreseen by the content provider. The term generally doesn’t refer to other forms of copy protection which can be circumvented without modifying the file or device, such as serial numbers or keyfiles. It can also refer to restrictions associated with specific instances of digital works or devices. Digital rights management is being used by companies such as Sony, Apple Inc., Microsoft and the BBC.
The Advanced Access Content System (AACS) is a standard for content distribution and digital rights management. It was developed by AS Licensing Administrator, LLC (AACS LA), a consortium that includes Disney, Intel, Microsoft, Panasonic, Warner Bros., IBM, Toshiba, and Sony.
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BD-ROM Mark is a small amount of cryptographic data that is stored separately from normal Blu-ray Disc data. Bit-by-bit copies that do not replicate the BD-ROM Mark are impossible to decode. A specially licensed piece of hardware is required to insert the ROM-mark into the media during replication. Through licensing of the special hardware element, the BDA believes that it can eliminate the possibility of mass producing BD-ROMs without authorization
Though not compulsory, the Blu-ray Disc Association recommends that Blu-ray Disc drives be capable of reading standard DVDs and CDs, for backward compatibility. A few early Blu-ray Disc players released in 2006 could play standard DVDs, but not CDs
Although the Blu-ray Disc specification has been finalized, engineers continue to work on advancing the technology. Quad-layer (100 GB) discs have been demonstrated on a drive with modified optics (TDK version) and standard unaltered optics (“Hitachi used a standard drive.”). Hitachi stated that such a disc could be used to store 7 hours of 32 Mbit/s video (HDTV) or 3.5 hours of 64 Mbit/s video (Cinema 4K). In August 2006, TDK announced that they have created a working experimental Blu-ray Disc capable of holding 200 GB of data on a single side, using six 33 GB data layers.
Also, behind closed doors at CES 2007, Ritek revealed that they had successfully developed a High Definition optical disc process that extends the disc capacity to ten layers, which increases the capacity of the discs to 250 GB. However, they noted that the major obstacle is that current read/write technology does not support the additional layers.
JVC has developed a three-layer technology that allows putting both standard-definition DVD data and HD data on a BD/(standard) DVD combination. If successfully commercialized, this would enable the consumer to purchase a disc that can be played on current DVD players and
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can also reveal its HD version when played on a BD player. Japanese optical disc manufacturer Infinity announced the first “hybrid” Blu-ray Disc/(standard) DVD combo, to be
released February 18, 2009. “Code Blue” will feature four hybrid discs containing a single Blu-ray Disc layer (25GB) and two standard DVD layers (9 GB) on the same side of the disc.
In January 2007, Hitachi showcased a 100 GB Blu-ray Disc, consisting of four layers containing 25 GB each. Unlike TDK and Panasonic’s 100 GB discs, they claim this disc is readable on standard Blu-ray Disc drives that are currently in circulation, and it is believed that a firmware update is the only requirement to make it readable to current players and drives.
In December 2008, Pioneer Corporation unveiled a 400 GB Blu-ray Disc (containing 16 data layers, 25 GB each) that will be compatible with current players after a firmware update. Its planned launch is in the 2009-10 time frame for ROM and 2010-13 for rewritable discs. Ongoing development is under way to create a 1 TB Blu-ray Disc as soon as 2013.
Mini Blu-ray Disc
The Mini Blu-ray Disc (also, Mini-BD and Mini Blu-ray) is a compact 8 cm (~3in)-diameter variant of the Blu-ray Disc that can store approximately 7.5 GB of data. It is similar in concept to the MiniDVD and MiniCD. Recordable (BD-R) and rewritable (BD-RE) versions of Mini Blu-ray Disc have been developed specifically for compact camcorders and other compact recording devices.
Blu-ray Disc recordable
“Blu-ray Disc recordable” refers to two optical disc formats that can be recorded with an optical disc recorder. BD-R discs can be written to once, whereas BD-RE can be erased and re-recorded multiple times. The current practical maximum speed for Blu-ray Discs is about 12Ã-. Higher speeds of rotation (10,000+ rpm) cause too much wobble for the discs to be read properly, as with the 20Ã- and 52Ã- maximum speeds, respectively, of standard DVDs and CDs.
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BD9 and BD5
The BD9 format was proposed to the Blu-ray Disc Association by Warner Home Video as a cost-effective alternative to the 25/50GB BD-ROM discs. The format was supposed to use the same codecs and program structure as Blu-Ray Disc video, but recorded onto less expensive 9GB dual-layer DVD disc. This red-laser media could be manufactured on existing DVD production lines with lower costs of production than the 25/50GB Blu-ray media.
Usage of BD9 for releasing content on “pressed” discs have never caught on. After the end of the format war major producers ramped up the production of Blu-Ray discs and lowered their prices to the level of DVD discs. On contrary, the idea of using inexpensive DVD media became popular among individual users. A lower-capacity version of this format that uses single-layer 4.5GB DVD discs has been unofficially called BD5. Both formats are being used by individual users for recording high definition content onto recordable DVD media.
Despite that BD9 format has been adopted as part of the BD-ROM basic format, none of existing Blu-Ray player models supports it explicitly. As such, the discs recorded in BD9 and BD5 formats are not guaranteed to be played on standard Blu-Ray Disc players.
AVCHD has been originally developed as a high definition format for consumer tapeless camcorders. Derived from the Blu-ray Disc specification, AVCHD uses lower data rate, simpler interactivity and cheaper media. AVCHD specification allows recording AVC-encoded video onto DVD discs, as well as onto other types of random access media like SD/SDHC memory cards, “Memory Stick” cards and hard disk drives
AVCREC uses BDAV container to record high definition content on conventional DVD discs. Presently AVCREC is tightly integrated with Japanese ISDB broadcast standard and is not marketed outside of Japan. AVCREC is used primarily in set-top digital video recorders and in this regard is comparable to HD REC.
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The invention of the blue ray technology is without any doubt the mile step in our life. The information and application of the blue rat disk described above confirm that our life can be easier with the blue diodes and blue lasers.
The blue laser in CD or DVD players allows to store four times more data on the same CDs than in the ordinary players. Blu ray technology is being revolutionizing our lives recently.
A blank rewritable Blu-ray Disc (BD-RE).
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