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Streaming Media
May 13, 2003

Table of Contents

MediaFORM Adds the Director EC Series
Primera Doubles the Disc Capacity for its Bravo Disc Publisher
V Inc. Introduces Bravo D1 DVD Player with MPEG-4 Playback
TDK Now Shippiing DA-9000 CD-RW Jukebox Recorder with 20GB Hard Drive
Toshiba to Offer New DVD/DVR Digital Home Media Server with TiVo Service
Microsoft Will Support All Major Writable DVD Formats in Future Versions Of Windows
Sonic Announces Support for Next-Generation DVD Video Recording Formats in AuthorScript and MyDVD
ATI Ships RADEON 9800 PRO 256 MB Graphics Card

MediaFORM Adds the Director EC Series

MediaFORM brings its fully automated "Disc-on-Demand" technology to your network with the introduction of the Director EC Series, which builds on the existing Director platform, but in a more flexible, cost-effective publishing solution.  The Director EC serves as an enterprise wide network-enabled CD-R / DVD-R publishing system that is capable of not only CD / DVD duplication, but also creating one-off discs, providing exclusive network administrator controls, and featuring direct-to-disc in-line printing for easy identification of CD contents.

MediaFORM's EasiAPI toolkit allows the Director EC to be integrated into users' existing custom applications to burn CDs / DVDs on demand.  Since MediaFORM's EasiAPI is not DLL-based, non-Windows applications, such as those written for Linux/UNIX and Macintosh, can also control the Director EC.

The Director EC centralizes CD-R duplication with Windows and Java Client software and enables users across a local or wide area network to create or duplicate discs from their desktop.  The unlimited job queue allows for multiple users to access the Director EC at one time.

The Director EC's ability to burn one-off CD / DVDs makes it capable of producing up to four unique discs simultaneously as each drive runs fully independent of the others.  Also unique to the Director EC is the ability to set user privilege levels, allowing an administrator to limit the quantity of discs or jobs a user may submit; log any job; or assign priority levels which determine the users' place in the queue.  Unattended operation is assured with input capacity of up to 600 discs and an unlimited queue.

"We feel this system is a breakthrough in duplication technology.  The many features that a network-based system provides, such as remote access and unlimited queuing, make duplication an essential element in any enterprise based business," stated Jonathan Bradlee, President of MediaFORM.

Other important advanced features of the Director EC include Asynchronous Duplication, which allows operation with no user intervention, and "Pick and Place" automated disc loading, which fully protects the discs.  The Director EC Series is equipped with MediaFORM's exclusive CD-R SmartDRIVE technology to provide enhanced professional audio capabilities and protection of intellectual property.


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Primera Doubles the Disc Capacity for its Bravo Disc Publisher

Primera Technology, Inc., a leading developer and manufacturer of CD/DVD disc duplication and printing equipment, is now shipping its Kiosk Mode Kit for the Bravo Disc Publisher. The Kiosk Mode Kit allows users to copy and print up to 50 discs per job with the Bravo Disc Publisher.  With the Kiosk Mode Kit, blank discs can be placed in both the input and output bin.  Bravo then burns and prints each disc and drops it out the center output chute into a metal output bin.   The occasional disc that may be rejected due to a media verification error is printed with the word "Reject."

The Kiosk Mode Kit is priced at US$49.95.  It includes a software upgrade, integrated metal support bracket and output bin.  For users who wish to use Kiosk Mode but without the optional output bin, free kiosk mode software is available through Primera's Technical Support Department at


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V Inc. Introduces Bravo D1 DVD Player with MPEG-4 Playback

Combined with the brand's Vizio P4 46" plasma EDTV or other digital displays, the Bravo D1 provides DVD and MPEG-4 AVI playback via DVI output in high resolution 480p, 1080i and 720p formats.

V Inc.'s Bravo D1 is the first home DVD player to ship with DVI output and MPEG-4 playback. DVI (Digital Video Interface) output offers a digital video signal from DVD to display without any analog conversion. The benefit of this direct digital connection is a picture free from the video noise and artifacts that are the result of D/A conversion. For digital fixed pixel projectors and TVs such as plasma, LCD, DLP, DILA and LCoS, this direct digital signal path allows the Bravo D1 to select a "1:1 Pixel Mapping" DVI output resolution that can exactly match that of the display's native resolution. SOUND & VISION magazine's technical editor, David Ranada, called the resultant DVD/DVI picture quality when displayed on a fixed pixel display "Reference-quality."

The Bravo D1 features also include DVD-R/+R, CD, CD-R/RW, MPEG-4 simple and advanced simple profile level 5, DivX 4.x, 5.x, MPEG-2 and MPEG-1 compressed video formats while audio decoding includes Dolby Digital and MPEG-1 Layers 1, 2 and 3 (MP3). Also supported is Kodak's Picture CD (JPEG) format for viewing digital photo content, which provides a substantially enhanced image when utilizing the high definition output. The player supports Dolby Digital and DTS 5.1 channel audio pass-through on optical and S/PDIF coaxial digital outputs. The player features NTSC composite, S-Video and Component Video output for interlaced or progressive video signals. MSRP is $199.


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TDK Now Shippiing DA-9000 CD-RW Jukebox Recorder with 20GB Hard Drive

Beneath the DA-9000's exterior lies a 20GB internal hard drive that can store more than 4,000 MP3 tracks, the equivalent of 300 audio CDs, providing ready access to a large music library. Using the USB connection, music can be transferred to the DA-9000 from any PC, and tracks can be ripped directly to the unit's hard drive or recorded on the fly with its audio inputs. The unit also can play and record audio CD, MP3, CD-R and CD-RW discs. The DA-9000 uses its internal Gracenote database to access song information, and offers a full complement of digital and analog audio inputs. MSRP is $399.


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Toshiba to Offer New DVD/DVR Digital Home Media Server with TiVo Service

Toshiba's SD-H400 combination DVD/DVR product, set to ship in August, delivers on the promise of the licensing agreement made between Toshiba, a primary developer and leader in DVD technology, and TiVo Inc, the creator of television services for digital video recording. This model will be the first combination of progressive scan DVD and TiVo technology available at retail. The SD-H400 will include a bundled set of DVR features from TiVo called the TiVo Basic service. This basic functionality will be included with the product and will be capable of upgrading to the full TiVo service and the TiVo Home Media Option.

As a DVD player, the Toshiba SD-H400 offers superlative DVD-video performance. Equipped with a 10bit/54mHz Video D/A converter, the SD-H400 offers maximum color purity, detail and resolution. When connected to a television via the ColorStream Pro Component Video Outputs, consumers can enjoy Toshiba's Digital Cinema Progressive technology when viewing either DVD or TiVo DVR playback. The SD-H400 can also playback DVD-R and RW, Video CD, CD, CD-R and RW as well as MP3s.

The SD-H400 is an 80GB TiVo Series2 DVR that includes the TiVo Basic service. Consumers can now enjoy limited TiVo DVR features right out of the box with no subscription fees. TiVo Basic service offers the ability to control live TV including pause, fast forward, rewind and slow motion playback of live television; 3 days of electronic program guide; and manual recording capability by time and channel. As the first device to offer the new TiVo Basic service, the SD-H400 gives consumers the option of entry-level TiVo service.

In addition to its full-featured DVD and upgradeable TiVo DVR capabilities, the Toshiba SD-H400 is capable of incorporating the new TiVo Home Media Option premium feature package. In this configuration, consumers can take full advantage of the Toshiba SD-H400's Digital Media Server capabilities. Available from TiVo as an upgrade via phone or broadband connection, the Home Media Option adds Home Networking capability to the home entertainment experience. Via the SD-H400's USB port, consumers can connect to their wired or wireless home network and PC. The Home Media Option adds the following features to the SD-H400:

o Digital Music, streaming of MP3 files from a PC for Mac for playback through the TV or home entertainment system

o  Digital Photos, viewing of digital photos through the TV

o  Remote Scheduling, which allows consumers to schedule recordings to their TiVo DVR from anywhere they can access the Internet.

In addition, the Home Media Option also allows connection to another TiVo Series2 DVR within the home enabling shared programs between the two units.

The Toshiba SD-H400 including the bundled TiVo Basic Service will be available in August for $549.00 MSRP.


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Microsoft Will Support All Major Writable DVD Formats in Future Versions Of Windows

Microsoft Corp. announced at the 12th annual Windows Hardware Engineering Conference (WinHEC) that it will provide built-in operating system support for all major writable DVD formats in future versions of the Windows desktop operating system.  This support will include DVD-RAM, DVD-RW/-R and DVD+RW/+R formats.  Comprehensive support for writable DVD formats adds to support Microsoft already announced for the DVD+MRW (Mt. Rainier) format as well as support available for the DVD-RAM format in Microsoft Windows XP.  

The support will enable users with a compatible drive to work with any of their existing writable DVDs used as a data storage medium.  Users will not need to download any additional drivers to ensure compatibility with their DVDs.

Microsoft has included built-in support for DVD devices in Windows operating systems since Windows 98, with driver support under the Windows Driver Model.  All Windows versions up to and including Windows XP and Windows Server(TM) 2003 support DVD-Video playback together with third-party MPEG-2 decoders and DVD-RAM as an optical media storage device.  Microsoft announced plans to support DVD+MRW in future versions of Windows at WinHEC 2002.


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Sonic Announces Support for Next-Generation DVD Video Recording Formats in AuthorScript and MyDVD

Sonic Solutions, a leader in DVD creation applications, announced at the Windows Hardware Engineering Conference (WinHEC 2003) enhancements to its AuthorScript DVD/CD engine and MyDVD application to support the DVD+R/RW Video Recording and DVD-RAM/-R/-RW VR formats, both of which are used by consumer set-top DVD recorders to make real-time recordings of personal videos and TV broadcasts.

Announced in concert with Microsoft's endorsement of all current DVD physical recording formats in the forthcoming version of Windows, Sonic's expanded support of the DVD+R/RW and DVD-RAM/-R/-RW real-time DVD recording formats ensures that consumers will have flexibility in choosing DVD recording devices for their living room and PC.

The new DVD video recording capabilities that Sonic is implementing deliver a unique approach to real-time recording, editing, and optimization that enables users to move video content easily between set-top DVD recorders and their personal computers. The enhancements to MyDVD are built upon the DVD+R/RW and DVD-RAM/-R/-RW format capabilities that Sonic is developing for AuthorScript(R), the DVD and CD formatting and burning engine that underlies Sonic's applications.

The DVD+R/RW Video Recording and DVD-RAM/-R/-RW VR enhancements are built around key technologies developed as part of Sonic's AuthorScript. These include:

o Video optimization -- Video is automatically optimized when recorded, edited, or appended to recordable and rewritable DVD discs.

o  Direct-to-DVD recording and editing — Video can be directly recorded on the PC in DVD+R/+RW Video Recording format, delivering round-trip inter-operability. In addition, MyDVD users can update and edit their DVD+R/+RW Video Recording and DVD-RAM/-R/-RW VR discs on their PC, taking advantage of the authoring and editing environment in MyDVD, while maintaining compatibility with set-top recorders.

o Finish-to-DVD — While the DVD+R/+RW Video Recording format offers high compatibility with existing DVD-Video players in the market, this exclusive MyDVD feature allows anyone to add professional-looking motion menus, transitions between clips, and photo slideshows to DVD+R/RW and DVD-R/RW recordings and finalize their discs in the DVD-Video format.


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ATI Ships RADEON 9800 PRO 256 MB Graphics Card

ATI Technologies is now shipping its RADEON 9800 PRO visual processing unit (VPU) with 256MB of fast DDR-2 (double data rate-2) memory. The RADEON 9800 PRO 256MB is available in limited quantities to OEM, retail and online customers.

Built on the RADEON 9800 PRO architecture, the chip features eight full precision pipelines that provide the brute force and agility needed to render real-time, Hollywood-caliber graphics. The additional memory provided in this new board significantly increases performance at the highest resolution and quality settings. The RADEON 9800 PRO 256MB allows users to experience cinematic rendering on their PCs.

The RADEON 9800 PRO's 256-bit memory interface provides the bandwidth for real-time 3D graphics and ensures that high-resolution textures and characters are rendered precisely. The RADEON 9800 PRO 256MB graphics card is available for $499 USD.


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