Sonic Solutions and Ravisent debut first HDTV on a DVD disc

Sonic Solutions announced today a technology partnership with Ravisent Technologies Inc. to bring High-Definition DVD to content developers and consumers for the first time. Called hDVD, the new format expands DVD beyond standard definition video to include any of the 18 ATSC video formats, including 1080i and 720p. Ravisent’s software-based High Definition
MPEG encoding and decoding technology will provide secure generation and display of the high-definition content with an internet-enabled user interface, while Sonic’s DVD Creator, DVD Fusion and DVDit! authoring applications will be extended to support the high-resolution video streams.

“hDVD represents a major breakthrough for studios looking to begin deploying High-Definition content today,” said Christopher Kryzan, senior vice president of Marketing and Engineering at Sonic Solutions. “Working with Ravisent we have extended the DVD format to include the exceptional video quality of 1080i or 720p MPEG-2 HDTV content in our extensive line of authoring tools.”

An extension to DVD, the most popular consumer format of all time, hDVD replaces standard-definition video with one or more of the High-Definition MPEG-2 video formats specified by the Advanced Television Standards Committee (ATSC). With up to four times the resolution of standard DVD-Video titles, hDVD titles show off original film or video content with unprecedented realism. To take advantage of the higher-resolution and higher bit-rate video material, Sonic Solutions will extend the DVD multiplexing and formatting engine used in Sonic DVD Creator, DVD Fusion and DVDit! to accept and author High-Definition MPEG-2 video content. Sonic plans to ship hDVD-ready authoring systems in July 2000.

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