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December 13, 2005

Table of Contents

Sigma Designs to Work on Full-Featured Blu-ray Player with Pioneer
DVD Disc Sales Value Slows, But New Technologies Will Spur International Growth, Report Says
Advanced Media Adds New White Inkjet Printable RIDATA 4X Dual-Layer DVD-R Discs
Canopus Introduces EDIUS Broadcast for Video Professionals Who Need To Get Content to Air Quickly
Ricoh Corporation Launches EncryptEase CD-R Hybrid Security Disc
Epson Now Shipping PowerLite Home 20 Projector
DivX Releases New Digital Media Product Suite for Mac
Creative Reveals the Zen Vision:M
Alien Skin Software Announces Exposure

Sigma Designs to Work on Full-Featured Blu-ray Player with Pioneer

Sigma Designs has announced that it will work with Pioneer Corporation (NYSE:PIO) on the joint development of a full-featured Blu-ray DVD player using Sigma Designs' SMP8630 family of media processors.

Blu-ray is a competing standard in the market for next-generation, high-definition optical players, based on blue laser disc technology. Blu-ray allows consumers to view movies and other programs in high definition. In addition, Blu-ray Discs allow consumers to record HD programming from a cable, satellite or TV antenna. A Blu-ray Disc computer drive enables consumers to store up to 50 gigabytes at a time to back up data, photos, portable music files and home videos.

Pioneer plans to introduce the new Blu-ray DVD player in the first half of 2006.

www.sdesigns.com

www.pioneerelectronics.com

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DVD Disc Sales Value Slows, But New Technologies Will Spur International Growth, Report Says

Research and Markets (http://www.researchandmarkets.com/reports/c29289) has announced the addition of The Changing Face of Studio Video Sales: Grow New Markets, Push High Definition, Get Interactive to their offerings.

The major Hollywood studios are facing a changing landscape for the consumption of their home video products. Sony Corporation is "betting the farm" on High Definition TV and HDTV products, including the next-generation Blu-Ray disc format. Sony's strategy may be strong enough to drive them into a dominating position for the future of digital home entertainment, and the other major Hollywood studios may simply be along for the ride. Microsoft and Intel are also lobbying strongly to play a part, with their Connected Digital Home solutions. Microsoft and Intel have voiced strong support for HD-DVD. Nobody can be sure how it is all going to play out.

By 2009, the forecast model predicts a worldwide retail value of US$ 50 Billion, with a Compound Annual Growth Rate of 5.4% for annual sales value of Hollywood Video Content sold at retail. The DVD value will hold its own but much of the growth will be due to the following:

  • Portable Player products
  • Next-Generation optical discs
  • Movie & TV Downloads

It is expected that the three alternative delivery formats to gain momentum in 2006, and continue growing through 2009. The coming few years will be very interesting ones for the Hollywood studios.

The Changing Face of Studio Video Sales: Grow New Markets, Push High Definition, Get Interactive covers the market for movie studio video sales. It includes analysis of technology and market trends for the number of TV Households, by region, that have at least one wide-screen HDTV-capable video display. The report also forecasts annual retail sales of Hollywood video products by category and by region through 2009. Profiles of major players in the home video industry are also provided.

For more information visit http://www.researchandmarkets.com/reports/c29289.

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Advanced Media Adds New White Inkjet Printable RIDATA 4X Dual-Layer DVD-R Discs

Advanced Media, Inc., has added to its white inkjet printable media offerings with the RIDATA 4X Dual Layer DVD-R and will be featuring the fast, new printable discs at the upcoming CES January 5-8, 2006 in Las Vegas, NV. The company's booth is in LVCC South Hall #35320. "

The RIDATA dual-layer 4X DVD-R inkjet printable disc has a 8.5GB capacity and features a white printable surface. Consistent high-quality recording and compatibility with a wide range of DVD players and printing systems make it ideal for virtually any copying need where a cost-effective, customized label is needed. The speed offered by the 4X recording rate will quickly record favorite audio, video or data files to the amazing 8.5GB of storage capacity the dual-layer disc offers.

The dual-layer disc has enough storage space for up to four hours of DVD-quality video, 16 hours of VHS-quality video, or over 120 hours of MP3 audio. New technology breakthroughs allow material to be either read or recorded on one layer without affecting the other layer. When data is being recorded or read, it does so continuously from the first layer to the second without interruption. It records at speeds of 1-4X and uses a high quality, dependable organic-dye recording material. The new RIDATA dual-layer discs feature excellent compatibility with popular DVD-based video players, game consoles and DVD-ROM drives as well as DVD-R DL drives.

The RIDATA 4X DVD-R DL disc is competitively street priced and available at leading computer and office-supply locations across the country as well as through popular online retail sites. About Advanced Media (RITEK USA) Advanced Media, Inc. is a subsidiary of RITEK Corporation. Advanced Media is the sole North and South American marketer and distributor of the RIDATA brand of recordable CD and DVD media as well as other types of electronic storage media. The RIDATA brand currently includes: CD-R/RW, DVD-R/RW, DVD+R/RW, and DVD-RAM optical discs; flash memory cards, adapters, and reader/writers; USB EZ drives; and assorted media accessories.

www.ritekusa.com

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Canopus Introduces EDIUS Broadcast for Video Professionals Who Need To Get Content to Air Quickly

Canopus Corporation has brought together an extensive collection of its video production, encoding and codec technologies in one package with the introduction of EDIUS Broadcast. EDIUS Broadcast is designed to meet the high standards and fast-paced environments of broadcast and post production facilities, including support for new tapeless acquisition and storage systems.

Incorporating real-time editing capabilities in a streamlined interface designed to help production professionals get content to air quickly, EDIUS Broadcast features EDIUS Pro 3 real-time video editing software, EDIUS Speed Encoder for HDV for fast HDV video output, as well as support for industry-standard equipment and formats including the following:

  • Panasonic DVCPRO 50 and DVCPRO HD
  • Panasonic DVCPRO P2 - Panasonic VariCam
  • Sony XDCAM Professional Disc System
  • Microsoft Windows Media

For added efficiency, Canopus speeds up HDV output for EDIUS Broadcast users with the inclusion of EDIUS Speed Encoder for HDV. Taking advantage of the new powerful dual-core CPU systems, EDIUS Speed Encoder accelerates HD (MPEG transport stream) file encoding direct from the EDIUS Pro 3 timeline, producing HDV footage up to twice as fast as standard encoders.

EDIUS Broadcast is available now from Canopus and its authorized dealers and system integrators for a suggested retail price of $999. EDIUS Pro 3 users can upgrade to EDIUS Broadcast for a special upgrade price of $499.

www.canopus.com

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Ricoh Corporation Launches EncryptEase CD-R Hybrid Security Disc

Ricoh Corporation, a provider of digital office equipment, has introduced EncryptEase, a secure intelligent recordable compact disc that utilizes built-in software to create a unique hybrid CD-R technology. EncryptEase is the first model to launch in Ricoh's new RR branded product line, which combines CD-R and CD-ROM technology in order to produce advanced hybrid products for the consumer and business communities.

Ricoh's EncryptEase hybrid security CD-R features copy guards, password-protected access and scheduled expiration dates. Through the hybrid concept, the CD-R section automatically stores information, while the encoding/decoding, data compression, writing and copy-guard functions are pre-installed in the ROM section of the disc. Ensuring protection from unauthorized parties, information burned onto EncryptEase can only be decrypted and retrieved with the assigned password, ensuring safe storage, management and offline-distribution of contents.

Additionally, EncryptEase offers the same input and retrieval functions as a conventional CD-R, and as a value-add, it features a pre-recorded encryption application in the ROM. Designed with the end-user in mind, EncryptEase is a multi-session CD-R that allows data to be added in up to 20 different sessions, and for ease-of-use, the software launches immediately upon inserting the disc into a PC.

EncryptEase is now available for a suggested retail price of $6.99 at http://www.ricoh-usa.com and will be available at other channels soon.

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Epson Now Shipping PowerLite Home 20 Projector

Epson America Inc. has announced it is now shipping its new Epson PowerLite Cinema Home 20 projector to select dealers in the U.S. and Canada, with an estimated street price of $999 (U.S.). The product also is now available through Epson's Web site at www.epsonstore.com.

The Epson PowerLite Home 20 is a new 480p native resolution 3LCD projector that comes equipped with everything necessary for entry-level users and video enthusiasts to enjoy big screen movies, video games, televised events, PC use and more. Its sleek design not only makes it an ideal installation projector, but its small shape also allows it to be used as a portable, table-top solution that can be set up in other rooms around the home or even transported to other locations and special events. Other key features and benefits for end-users include the following:

  • 1,200 ANSI lumens of brightness and 1000:1 contrast ratio
  • Epson 3LCD(TM) technology for brilliant image quality with rich, accurate colors (uses eight bits per color to project more than 16.7 million colors)
  • Optical/offset lens shift to easily setup viewing space in any area without distortion
  • Short throw distance, allowing for projection of an 80-inch widescreen image from 6.6 feet away
  • Six preset color modes tailored for different lighting conditions
  • 3,000-hour lamp life
  • Input sources for component video, VGA (for PC use) and composite video

The PowerLite Home 20 also comes with an 80-inch, pull-up, floor-standing, 16:9 widescreen that is portable and easy to store within its compact carrying case.

www.epsonstore.com

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DivX Releases New Digital Media Product Suite for Mac

DivX 6 for Mac, a digital media software suite that lets Mac users easily create and play highly compressed, high-quality DivX video compatible with millions of consumer electronics devices, was released today and is available for download on www.divx.com.

DivX 6 for Mac includes the new DivX Converter for Mac, a one-step video creation application that represents the first official stand-alone DivX encoding program for the Mac platform. DivX Converter is a lightweight, drag-and-drop application that enables users to create high-quality DivX videos from a variety of sources in one easy step.

DivX videos created using the Converter can then be played back on tens of millions of DivX Certified consumer electronics devices from major manufacturers, including DVD players, portable media players, in-car devices and more.

The release also includes the DivX 6 codec for Mac, a Quicktime plug-in that lets Mac users easily playback and export to DivX video from any Quicktime-based application. With extremely fast performance and advanced encoding options that enable DVD-quality video at file sizes 7-10 times smaller than MPEG-2/DVD, the DivX codec for Mac offers the best combination of speed, quality and compression on the market. "

DivX 6 for Mac is compatible with Quicktime 6 and 7 and Mac OS X 10.3 or later. The full version of DivX 6 for Mac is available for download on DivX.com for $19.99 USD. There is also a free trial version available that includes a 15-day trial of the DivX Converter and a 6-month trial of DivX Codec for Mac with Pro features. The ability to play back DivX videos does not expire at any time.

To download DivX 6 for Mac, visit www.divx.com/divx/mac.

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Creative Reveals the Zen Vision:M

Creative Technology Ltd. has introduced the Zen Vision:M, Creative's premier 30GB video player, photo viewer and MP3 player. Designed with a 2.5-inch, high-resolution 262,144 color LCD screen, the Zen Vision:M displays rich, vibrant digital video, and photos, full-color menus and album art. The Zen Vision:M will be available in gorgeous high-gloss black, white, blue, green or pink this month for US$329.99 at http://www.us.creative.com.

The Zen Vision:M carries up to 15,000 songs, and supports music subscription services including Yahoo! Music Unlimited, Napster To Go and Rhapsody To Go. The Zen Vision:M also supports downloads from online music stores like Yahoo! Music, Napster, MSN Music and AOL Music Now. The rechargeable battery provides up to 15 hours of music playback. The Zen Vision:M delivers four hours of video playback and provides extensive video format support, including MPEG-2, MPEG-4 Simple Profile formats such as Xvid, WMV, and MJPEG for enjoyment of up to 120 hours of movies downloaded from the Internet. The Zen Vision:M also supports TiVoToGo for free viewing of TV shows recorded on a TiVo personal video recorder, digitized home movies transferred from the PC, and video blogs from companies such as RocketBoom.

With capacity for tens of thousands of photos, the Zen Vision:M displays stunning full-color image output on any size TV screen through an optional composite video-out connector. Users can watch slideshows set to music and select individual digital photos as display backgrounders.

The new Creative Zen Vision:M will be available this month at http://www.us.creative.com for US$329.99. It comes with an AC adapter, USB 2.0 cable, high-quality earphones, and a protective pouch. Optional accessories, including a docking station and an AV-out cable, will be available for purchase separately at http://www.us.creative.com.

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Alien Skin Software Announces Exposure

Alien Skin Software has announced Exposure, an all-new plug-in for Adobe Photoshop and other compatible host programs. Exposure brings the look and feel of film to digital photography.

Photographers can now digitally simulate current and discontinued film stocks, as well as recreate a signature look as a one-click effect. Moreover, saturation, light temperature, dynamic range, softness, sharpness, and the addition of realistic grain can be managed in one step.

Foremost a film simulator, Exposure is based on the detailed analysis of real world film stocks. A photographer can now quickly and easily evoke the vivid colors of Velvia, the rich blacks of Kodachrome, or the sensitivity of Ektachrome®. Exposure includes presets that emulate the warmth, softness, and realistic grain of dozens of real world film stocks, both color and black and white. Plus, any preset can be the starting point for a signature look, adjusted it to suit a particular subject, or applied to a batch of images using Photoshop Actions.

Exposure adds realistic grain separately to the shadows, mid-tones, and highlights of an image. Unlike other digital products, Exposure does not add harsh, unrealistic noise to an image. Instead, Exposure models the size, shape, and color of real world grain. Exposure can even mimic the pronounced grain of films such as Ilford 3200 Delta, as well as the discontinued Ektachrome EES and GAF 500. Collecting color, dynamic range, softness, and grain controls in one place,

Exposure simplifies workflow. Photographers can now master one easy-to-use tool. Streamlined color and saturation controls warm/cool with a single. Exposure makes gamma correction and contrast changes less intimidating by adding high level contrast, highlight and shadow controls to curves editing. Exposure includes several, additional features that address the needs of photographers. Exposure reproduces key studio and darkroom effects such as cross processing, push processing, and glamour portrait softening. 32-bit image support makes it possible to work with high dynamic range (HDR) images. Exposure encourages non-destructive editing, allowing users to render an adjusted image as a new layer in Photoshop.

Exposure's advanced preview system includes an optional, split preview in addition to a before/after button. Exposure pairs unlimited undo/redo with fast rendering and lets photographers zoom and pan using Photoshop style keyboard shortcuts. 

Exposure will be available early in 2006 for an estimated street price of $199. Registered users of other Alien Skin products will receive discount pricing when ordering direct from http://www.alienskin.com.

Exposure will also be available worldwide through stores, catalogs and resellers.

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