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Meridian Tests Player Functionality With DualDisc Print E-mail
Monday, 03 January 2005
Meridian has carried out tests on DualDisc functionality with their players, and has found that DualDisc is compatible with the majority of their players. DualDisc has a DVD layer on one side, and a CD-compatible layer on the other. On the DVD side, the majority of discs carry DVD-Audio content, which uses Meridian Lossless Packing (MLP), and also carries a DVD-Video zone with the music in either stereo PCM and/or lossy-compressed stereo/surround formats. The DVD side of a DualDisc is 100% consistent with the DVD specification and will play in all Meridian’s past and present DVD-Video and DVD-Audio players. The other side of the DualDisc contains a layer that is intended to be compatible with the majority of CD players. This layer is thinner than a normal CD (typically 0.9mm rather than 1.1mm). This is primarily to keep the overall disc thickness below 1.5mm to minimize potential issues with slot-loading and caddy-based multi-disc players. DualDisc market tests reported that a small percentage of CD players, and especially DVD players, were unable to play the CD-compatible side reliably.

Because the CD side is not compliant with Red Book physical parameters, Meridian does not guarantee that the CD-compatible side will play without audible errors in all players. However, attempting to do so will not cause harm or damage to Merdian players.

Below are Meridian’s results and recommendations:

Meridian DVD Players: Meridian DVD players (586, 596, 598, 800, G98, G91) play the DVD side without problems. Meridian advises consumers to use this side of the disc in their Meridian DVD players because their players do not always play the CD-compatible side since the player optics are not designed for such thin CD layers.

Meridian CD-only players: In Meridian tests, the CD-compatible side functioned fine in the following CD-only players: MCD, Pro-MCD; all 200 Series players; all 600 Series players; 500, 506, 507, 508 and G07.

Meridian ROM-based CD players: Meridian has found that the 588 and G08 use a ROM drive whose optics are optimal for Red Book CD but are not optimised for CD-compatible layers as thin as those used on DualDisc. For consumers who wish to play DualDisc on these players, Meridian offers a modification that allows these players to play DualDisc with no change in the quality for regular CD. The player would be sent to an authorized service center, so Meridian asks that consumers do not undertake this option unless they plan to collect these discs. The modification program will start in early 2005 - contact [email protected] for details.

DVD-Plus: For the 2-sided DVD-based disc format called DVD-Plus or OneDisc, which is thicker than DualDisc (typically 1.55mm), Meridian has reported that in the cases they have tested, both CD-compatible and DVD-compatible layers appear to function in all their players, and cause no harm.

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