Blu-ray news round-up

Panasonic will be releasing a 4x Blu-ray burner, which will compete with a recently announced Sony 4x burner. It will burn single-layer 25GB and dual-layer 50GB BD-R at 4x, BD-RE at 2x, DVD±R at 16x, DVD±R DL at 8x, DVD-RW at 6x, CD-R at 40x, and CD-RW at 24x – comparable to the Sony. The Panasonic LF-PB271JD comes out in Japan on November 10th for Â¥55,000 (roughly $468), a good bit less than the Sony drive.

Meijer, a regional retailer with 180 stores in IL, IN, MI, OH, and KY, has decided to drop HD DVD from the website. They were seeing Blu-ray outsell HD DVD 4 to 1, and so decided to drop HD DVD and instead to expand their Blu-ray Disc offerings. They now offer 300 titles, nearly all of the Blu-ray titles released to date.

Speaking of BD titles, while Warner Bros. has officially supported both HD DVD and Blu-ray, are release most HD titles on both formats, there have been some high-profile titles released only on HD DVD – such as Terminator 3 and The Matrix Trilogy. These titles took advantage of HD DVD’s HDi interactive features and support for PIP-style bonus features and commentary. Now with Blu-ray players supporting Profile 1.1 hitting shelves soon (all new players released after October 31 must support 1.1), it looks like Warner is going to play catch-up. The first catch-up title has been announced – Terminator 3. T3 will be hitting Blu-ray on December 4th, with all of the high-def bonus features found on the HD DVD release (from September 2006) intact.

And finally, the Blu-ray Disc Association, the consortium which controls the BD specifications, has overhauled their website. They’ve added a lot of consumer oriented information to help educate consumers who come looking for answers to their BD questions. It is a lot more consumer-friendly than the old site, which was aimed more at industry.

About MegaZone

MegaZone is the Editor of Gizmo Lovers and the chief contributor. He's been online since 1989 and active in several generations of 'social media' - mailing lists, USENet groups, web forums, and since 2003, blogging.    MegaZone has a presence on several social platforms: Google+ / Facebook / Twitter / LinkedIn / LiveJournal / Web.    You can also follow Gizmo Lovers on other sites: Blog / Google+ / Facebook / Twitter.
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