Blu-ray provides the most enjoyable movie watching experience in the home, with storage capabilities that exceed even Dual-layer DVDs by over 500%. Hearing completely uncompressed sound over a Blu-ray movie really brings a smile to may face with surround sound, and 1080p is still an awesome resolution for my entertainment needs. But with 4K televisions becoming a thing now, sooner or later discs are going to have to hold more data, and the drives that read them are going to need to be ready too. Today, Sony put all those concerns to bed, as it announced a brand new Blu-ray disc that will hold a LOT more data. 1 Terabyte of data, to my amazement. The bad news? It’s just for professional use, not commercial sale to the public.
DVDs and Blu-Rays Today:
To put this into perspective, standard DVDs can hold approximately 4.7GB of data. A dual-layer DVD (one which the player reads forwards, and then between the layers as it comes backwards – another layer within the layer) can hold 8.5GB. Blu-ray discs, on the other hand, start at 25GB of data, and most major Hollywood movies use dual-layer Blu-ray discs for up to 50GB of storage on a single disc. If you were ever wondering why the XBOX version of you game came with multiple discs while the Playstation counterpart to that game needed only one disc… that’s why. Blu-ray. It’s a Sony product, and they’re making it even better now…. just not for us.
Sony’s new “Archival Disc”
Sony describes the Archival Disc as a “new standard for professional-use, next-generation optical discs, with the objective of expanding the market for long-term digital data storage.” Just to translate that – It means this disc (named “Archival Disc”) is currently meant for professional use, and will aid the film industry in their current storage problem for backing up their work with archived physical storage.
But what if it was for commercial use?
How easy would it be to have this technology in our living rooms for films and video games? Well, 1 Terabyte (abbreviated 1TB) is the technical equivalent to 1,024GB (gigabytes). In other words, the next generation of Blu-Ray disc is 20 times larger than a current dual-layer Blu-ray today. Imagine what filmmakers and game designers can achieve now with that much storage! Of course, disc drives will need to be manufactured that can handle such a disc. Because if these filmmakers and game designers are producing higher-quality content with far more data on the disc, the drive that spins it will need to be able to read more data in the same amount of time. Potentially 20 times more. That type of device would cost a lot to engineer and design, and would certainly be out of reach for the modern consumer, at least for now.
You can find out a bit more about this new technology from GameSpot.
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