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      Online Glossary of DVD/HD/AVCHD/Blu-ray Terms


   Online Glossary of DVD/HD/AVCHD/Blu-ray Terms

Blu-ray Disc (BD)

Blu-ray Disc (BD)

Blu-ray Disc (also known as Blu-ray or BD) is an optical disc storage medium designed by Sony to supersede the standard DVD format. Its main uses are high-definition video and data storage with 50GB per disc. The disc has the same physical dimensions as standard DVDs and CDs.

The name Blu-ray Disc derives from the blue laser used to read the disc. While a standard DVD uses a 650 nanometre red laser, Blu-ray uses a shorter wavelength, a 405 nm blue laser, and allows for almost six times more data storage than on a DVD.



BDMV is a video format of Blu-ray Disc Movie.



BD-5 is a single layered Blu-ray disc with 25 GB capacity. BD-50 is a double layered Blu-ray disc with 50 GB capacity.



The "AVCHD" is a brand new high definition (HD) digital video camera recorder format recording 1080i*1 and 720p*2 signals onto certain media by using highly efficient codec technologies. The "AVCHD" is jointly established by Panasonic, the brand name for which Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd. is known and Sony Corporation.




BD9 and BD5 are lower capacity variants of the Blu-ray Disc that contain Blu-ray Disc compatible video and audio streams contained on a conventional DVD (650 nm wavelength / red laser) optical disc. Such discs offer the use of the same advanced compression technologies available to Blu-ray Discs (including H.264/MPEG-4 AVC, VC-1 and MPEG-2) while using lower cost legacy media. BD9 uses a standard 8152MB DVD9 dual-layer disc while BD5 uses a standard 4482MB DVD5 single-layer disc.

BD9/BD5 discs can be authored using home computers for private showing using standard DVD±R recorders. AACS digital rights management is optional. The BD9/BD5 format was originally proposed by Warner Home Video, as a cost-effective alternative to regular Blu-ray Discs. It was adopted as part of the BD-ROM basic format, file system, and AV specifications. BD9/BD5 is similar to 3× DVD for HD DVDs.


Blu-ray Disc Read Only Memory (BD-ROM)

A Blu-ray disc format that contains pre-recorded data; usually film in High Definition format, for playback on Blu-ray Disc players. Other typical uses include music, software and games.



Blu-ray Disc Recordable (BD-R/BD-RE)

Blu-ray Disc recordable refers to two optical disc formats that can be recorded with an optical disc recorder. BD-R discs can be written to once, whereas BD-RE can be erased and re-recorded multiple times. The theoretical maximum speed for Blu-ray Discs is about 12×. Higher speeds of rotation (10,000+ rpm) cause too much wobble for the discs to be read properly, as with the 20× and 52× respective maximum speeds of standard DVDs and CDs.

Since September 2007, BD-RE was also available in the smaller 8 cm Mini Blu-ray Disc diameter size.

On September 18, 2007, Pioneer and Mitsubishi co-developed BD-R LTH ("Low to High" in groove recording), which features an organic dye recording layer that can be manufactured by modifying existing CD-R and DVD-R production equipment, significantly reducing manufacturing costs.

In February 2008, Taiyo Yuden, Mitsubishi and Maxell released the first BD-R LTH Discs, and in March 2008, Sony's PlayStation 3 gained official support for BD-R LTH Discs with the 2.20 firmware update.

Unlike the previous releases of 120 mm optical discs (i.e. CDs and standard DVDs), Blu-ray recorders hit the market almost simultaneously with Blu-ray's debut (at least in Japan).




D5 is a single layered DVD disc with 5 GB capacity. D9 is a double layered DVD disc with 9 GB capacity.



DVD+RW is the name of a standard for optical discs: one of several types of DVD, which hold up to about 4.7 GB per disc (interpreted as approximately 4.7 × 109 bytes; actually 2295104 sectors of 2048 bytes each which comes to 4700372992 bytes, 4590208 binary kilobytes, 4482.625 binary megabytes, or 4.377563476 binary gigabytes) and are used for storing films, music or other data.

DVD+RW supports random write access, which means that data can be added and removed without erasing the whole disc and starting over (up to about 1000 times). With suitable support from the operating system, DVD+RW media can thus be treated like a large floppy disk.

A DVD-RW disc is a rewritable optical disc with equal storage capacity to a DVD-R, typically 4.7 GB. The format was developed by Pioneer in November 1999 and has been approved by the DVD Forum. Unlike DVD-RAM, it is playable in about 75% of conventional DVD players. The smaller Mini DVD-RW holds 1.46 GB, with a diameter of 8 cm.

The primary advantage of DVD-RW over DVD-R is the ability to erase and rewrite to a DVD-RW disc. According to Pioneer, DVD-RW discs may be written to about 1,000 times before needing replacement, making them comparable with the CD-RW standard. DVD-RW discs are commonly used for volatile data, such as backups or collections of files. They are also increasingly used for home DVD video recorders. One benefit to using a rewritable disc is if there are writing errors when recording data, the disc is not ruined and can still store data by erasing the faulty data.



Blu-ray Disc
Laser wavelength
405 nm (blue-violet laser)
650 nm (red laser)
Numerical aperture 0.85 0.65
Storage capacity
(single side)
per layer/maximum

25/50 GB

15/30 GB

1.4/2.6 GB (8 cm DVD), 4.7/8.5 GB (12 cm DVD)

4.7/8.5 GB
Raw data transfer 53.95 Mbit/s 36.55 Mbit/s 18 Mbit/s 11.08 Mbit/s
Audio+Video+Subtitles 48.0 Mbit/s 30.24 Mbit/s   10.08 Mbit/s
Video 40.0 Mbit/s 29.4 Mbit/s   9.8 Mbit/s
Mandatory video codecs
H.264/MPEG-4 AVC / VC-1 / MPEG-2
H.264/MPEG-4 AVC MPEG-1 / MPEG-2
Video resolution (maximum)

720×480 (NTSC)

720×576 (PAL)

Frame rates at maximum resolution 24p, 50/60i 25/30p, 50/60i 24p, 50/60i 50/60i




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