Sony Turns the CD Blu
As is being reported, Sony has announced a "new" CD format. Enabled by advances instituted when they created Blu-ray, the new Blu-spec CD is designed to reduce jitter and therefore increase fidelity of the music reproduction. Sony claims that the new Blu-spec CD offers quality similar to the master.
But the question is how will it sound when the majority of the consumers compress it into 128 bit MP3s and shove it on their iPod with 4000 of their favorite songs?
Sony is creating the new Blu-spec CDs out of polymer polycarbonate materials and utilizing an optimized Blue Laser Beam cutting technology that improves the
quality of the laser beam. Currently, the new format is only set to be available in Japan with a launch date of December 24. The new discs are slightly more expensive than the usual offerings (by about 40%) though it is unknown when/if the discs will ever hit US shores and at what price point.
Sixty titles consisting of Classical, Jazz, and "other genres" (most likely appealing to those that care about fidelity) will be available at launch. Sony plans on releasing upcoming music titles on the new format plus releasing some older offerings. You can rest assured that they will also push other companies to adopt the format for their audio
The big surprise of this announcement is not that Sony has released a new format for a medium that seems to have already hit it's peak and maybe is past it, but that the new Blu-spec CD will work in existing CD players. Sony has long been known to require additional purchases or to release proprietary formats. This ability to integrate with existing CD players may be the only thing that will give Blu-spec CD a chance at life. Still, with SACD, DVD-A, HDCD, and more already on the market (and not exactly raking in the big bucks), is Blu-spec CD anything more than just another way to get the public to associate "Blu" with "Quality?"
I'm sure Sony's plan is to enable additional content when you pop it in a BD player.
More talk here:
Yes I know they are backwards compatible with CD but I thought they were hybrids. Otherwise, what't the point? Sony states many times the SACD was a better invention than CD.
The article doesn't say anything about requiring an additional player at all to fully utilize the disc. The difference seems to be in the manufacturing, not a different player technology. SACD does not fall into that category since you actually need a different player to really use its potential.
So the Blu-spec CD titles are being released with no talk of Blu-spec players?
They play in normal CD players. I think the idea behind this is to get people thinking "Blu" without having to buy new equipment.