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Tuesday, October 12, 2004
Sony Unveils DVD Burner That Combines Stand-Alone And Computer-Attached DVD-Video Recording

Sony is unlocking new levels of home video enjoyment with the world's first DVD burner capable of stand-alone, real-time DVD recording, as well as computer-attached burning.

Sony's new DVDirect? (pronounced DVD Direct) device can connect directly to a camcorder or VCR for transferring tape-based video footage to DVD for playback on most home DVD players and PC DVD-ROM drives.

Camcorder sales continue to soar, marking a significant opportunity for the DVDirect device to help camcorder owners transfer home movies onto DVD without the complexity of using a computer. This allows DVD recording to be extended to a broader group of consumers who might otherwise consider the task too daunting.

The DVDirect burner can also be attached to a PC, and comes with the necessary software for advanced DVD video authoring projects, as well as the creation of data, music, and video DVDs and CDs.

"Preserving precious moments onto DVD has never been easier than with the DVDirect burner," said Robert DeMoulin, marketing manager for branded storage products in Sony Electronics' IT Products Division. "Users can simply connect their camcorder to the recorder, hit the record button, and out comes a DVD disc that they can pop into their home DVD player. Meanwhile, computer-savvy users can attach the DVDirect device to a PC to perform all of the common tasks characteristic of computer-attached burners."

"Sony continues to be a pioneer in the DVD-recordable market by simplifying the DVD burning process," said Wolfgang Schlichting, research director for removable storage for IDC. "With DVD-recordable speeds reaching their limit, Sony has taken the next step in market innovation with DVDirect.

The DVDirect device can burn up to 12 hours of high-quality MPEG-2 video onto compatible double layer DVD+R DL discs or up to six hours onto standard single layer DVD+R or DVD+RW discs. The device can also automatically insert chapters onto DVDs through DVD+Video Recording (+VR), or "start and stop" recording, so users can jump to specific parts of a DVD during playback and edit video footage on the fly.

Less to Buy and Less to Set Up

Unlike computer-attached burners currently on the market that require a separate capture card and a computer to perform the same functions, Sony's DVDirect burner features built-in real-time video capturing and hardware MPEG-2 encoding to quickly deliver high-quality DVDs. Consumers who want to transfer their analog tapes to DVD can save money on extra hardware expenditures by choosing the all-in-one DVDirect device.

Computer-Attached Recording

When attached to a PC with a USB 2.0 connection, the DVDirect burner also supports dual-format, double-layer burning. With 16X maximum recording speeds for DVD+R, users can burn a full write-once disc in about six minutes. Double layer burning allows consumers to record up to four hours of MPEG-2 video (at 4.7 Mbps) and up to 8.5GB of data onto a single-sided, double layer disc. Additionally, Sony's DVDirect burner can support 4X DVD±RW, 48X CD-R and 24X CD-RW recording speeds, so users can select the speed and media that best suits their needs.

Users can benefit from many other features when they connect the DVDirect device to a computer, including the ability to jazz up their home movies with special effects or music, or to make copies of home movies using a master DVD.

DVD and CD Software Suite

Sony's DVDirect device comes bundled with an award-winning Nero? software suite from Ahead for computer-attached operation. The package features DVD video authoring software and DVD/CD burning software, as well as packet-writing software for users to easily record files and folders by dragging them to the icon of a DVD+RW/CD-RW disc. Additional elements include DVD-Video playing software, backup software, virtual disc drive software, management/jukebox software, disc label creation software and drive tool software. All tasks and applications are accessible via the unique Nero StartSmart launcher, which serves as the ultimate command-center, giving the user one-click access to all programs in the package.

Availability and Pricing

The DVDirect burner is expected to ship in November for an estimated selling price of around $300. Sony DVD/CD rewritable drives are sold through resellers and retailers nationwide, mail order catalogs, and select online shopping sites, including sonystyle.com.

For this product, Sony will provide "worry-free" installation, along with toll-free customer and technical service, Monday through Saturday, from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. CT. The company will also provide a one-year limited warranty from the original date of purchase. See product literature and actual warranty for details.

Specifications for Sony's New DVDirect Burner (Model VRD-VC10):

Stand-Alone Recording Mode

Supported Media for Stand-alone Operation: DVD+R, DVD+R DL (Double Layer), DVD+RW
DVD Recording Mode: DVD+VR
Supported Video Format: MPEG2
Automatic Chaptering: 5, 10 or 15 minutes
Synchronized Recording:
Auto-start/stop recording with most camcorders/VCRs

Recording Times:
HQ (single layer: 1 hour, double layer: 2 hours)
SP (single layer: 2 hours, double layer: 4 hours)
SLP (single layer: 6 hours, double layer: 12 hours)

Supported Sound Format: Dolby? Digital (AC3)

Composite video (yellow RCA jack) x 1
S-Video x 1
Analog audio 2ch (red and white RCA jacks)

Computer-Attached Recording Mode

Supported Media Types & Speeds:
DVD+R DL: 2.4X CLV (max.) writing
DVD+R: 16X CAV (max.) writing
DVD+RW: 4X CLV (max.) rewriting
DVD-R: 8X Z-CLV (max.) writing
DVD-RW: 4X CLV (max.) rewriting
DVD-ROM reading (single layer): 16X CAV (max.)
DVD-ROM reading (dual layer): 8X CAV (max.)
CD-R: 48X P-CAV (max.) writing
CD-RW: 24X Z-CLV (max.) rewriting
CD-ROM: 48X CAV (max) reading

Interface: Hi Speed USB 2.0

OS Support: Compatible with Microsoft Windows? 2000 / Windows XP

Burst Data Transfer Rate: High Speed USB 2.0: 480 Mbit/s max
Random Access Time: 140 ms (CD-ROM), 135 ms (DVD-ROM)
Buffer Memory: 8 MB
Buffer Under-run Error Protection Technology: Sony Power-Burn conformed
Compatible Disc Formats: DVD-ROM, DVD-Video, DVD+R DL, DVD+RW, DVD+R, DVD-RW, DVD-R, CD-ROM, CD-DA, Video CD, Photo CD (multi-session), CD TEXT, CD Extra, and others
Recording Methods (CD): Disc at Once, Track at Once, Session at Once, Packet Writing, (DVD): Random Access Write (DVD+RW/DVD-RW/CD-RW), Sequential Write (DVD+R/+RW, DVD-R/-RW/CD-R/RW)
Dimensions: 164 x 66 x 234 mm (H x W x L)

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