New 16 layer 400GB Blu-ray Discs Backwards Compatible?

Posted by Mehar Gill on December 3, 2008 
Filed Under: Authoring, Blu-ray, Format War, Hardware, Replication, Software

At a IT event in Taipei, in a rather vague statement, Pioneer confirmed the 16 layer 400GB Blu-ray disc will be backwards compatible with existing players.

The technology of the super multi-layer read-only disc is based on Blu-ray Disc (BD) with a breakthrough in material of reflective layers, according to Pioneer High Fidelity Taiwan. The specifications of the pick-up head (PUH) of the disc is the same as those for the PUH of blank BD discs, and therefore the Pioneer discs can be read on BD players, the company said.

Before you go running to the hills claiming the superiority of the format/players, note the statement still doesn’t confirm all 16 layers will be readable on current gen players. For all we know this could be confirming the first two layers can be read on current players. Will we ever get a clear statement?

We doubt load times and price point will be on the consumers side, don’t bother asking for the single disc Star Trek anthology anytime soon!


[Via EngadgetHD]

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10 Responses to “New 16 layer 400GB Blu-ray Discs Backwards Compatible?”

  1. tom vinelli on December 3rd, 2008 3:54 pm

    i find it interesting that despite what we read.
    blu-ray growing slow,sales slow,all the negitive stuff on blu-ray written,
    the ce’s go on improveing bd players and coming up with a 16layer bd!
    now they are ether stupid,or bd is doing better then everyone thinks.

    why in the world would they keep going forword with bd and lose money.
    no company in there right mind would do that.

    we saw that with hd dvd,no support,despite cheap[price] players=tosh pulling out and stop making players

    i don’t see that with bd all they have to do is get 20% of the market and then there no stopping it.i know easier said then done

  2. Mi on December 3rd, 2008 6:04 pm

    That’s not necessarily a valid argument; Toshiba kept pissing away money for another six or eight months when they knew hd DVD was done. But yes, new development reveals that the electronics companies, who are making a living off of Blu-ray, are confident in its growth.

    The story is that only a relative few people are saying that BD is doing poorly. Even fewer that actually believe it. The rest are likely trying to stall development, ala microsoft and apple, in order to better position their own products or services, or are just haters for whatever reasons…

  3. Ryan on December 3rd, 2008 9:37 pm

    It’s not that BD is doing poorly, there are just still issues with it. Eventually all will get worked out. BD is here to stay, at least in the videogame department, but very likely in the home theater area as well, BD is the best we’ve got right now. Until something else pops up, there really isn’t an effective argument for it to fail.

    The article could just be saying it will be readable on the current architecture, but I didn’t see a mention of the specific model players on the market now… Don’t assume.

  4. webdev511 on December 3rd, 2008 11:24 pm

    So you’re saying that Toshiba knew HD DVD was done in June of 2007?

    BD isn’t doing poorly, but it also isn’t performing anywhere near where the hype machine predicted it would be once HD DVD bit the dust.

    Toshiba looks like they got it right. Between MS, Apple and the economy blu-ray adoption may be just slow enough to make optical storage nothing more than the bridge format that Toshiba was positioning HD DVD to be. Flash is the future. Once the flash manufacturers get fast transfer 32GB flash down below $10, the first flash HD devices and movies will start to trickle out. 64GB won’t be too far behind and at that point Blu will become the lower capacity, lower bit rate distribution media.

    Streaming will replace DVD rentals, HD Flash will replace Blu-Ray rental & purchase.

  5. xfrgtr on December 4th, 2008 5:09 am

    webdev511,you sound like a former hddvd fanboy,bluray is here to stay,and for a very long time

  6. Mehar Gill on December 4th, 2008 6:12 am

    @xfrgtr – He’s right, this new 400GB disc if it will ever be used for consumer use will initiate the “pricing formatwar”, who ever is able to make their format cheaper the fastest wins.

    @Mi -

    Could be they were improving it for the upcoming format war? (CBHD vs Blu Ray) :p

    In all serriousness though, I doubt Toshiba knew it was over, especially after the Paramount thing. And if the reports are true that Toshiba was about to get Warner and Fox exclusive…….

  7. tom vinelli on December 4th, 2008 6:56 am

    maybe,but by nature humans like to collect things,maybe something you put on a mantle to look at.
    movie collectors are no diffent.we like putting a disc in a player,putting our movie collection where everyone can see it..
    people like that have to die off first before downloading etc. takes over everything.
    and studios and ces know it.
    man has collected things since they walked up right.
    i can see it 10 years from now!”hey bill,you want to come over and see my great collection of flash drives!”….somehow that just don’t sound right..

  8. tom vinelli on December 4th, 2008 7:00 am

    @Mehar Gill
    i argee with you,my guess it will be used more for data storage then anything else.
    i doubt the studios will put 4or 5 movies on one disc.
    i think the point is not matter what you do you can’t get away from phyical media

  9. Ryan on December 4th, 2008 5:15 pm

    Wasn’t the original premise that you could have multiple movies on one disc? I remember the LOTR trilogy being talked about as a single disc feature set …

    Toshiba didn’t know anything was over until it was over, the last month before the Warner announcement, everyone was gung ho about their respective format pulling ahead. Once they found out, it took them a little bit to publicly admit what we all knew, that HD had taken a turn for the worst, and after the next batch of releases they announced it over.


    Once an HD DVD fanboy, always an HD DVD fanboy. There is no ‘former’ about it. We’re still human beings, and we still love our red cases …

  10. tom vinelli on December 6th, 2008 10:42 am

    @Ryan -
    well that fine,but meanwhile more and more titles are coming out on blu-ray
    that wil lnever ever see hd dvd

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