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Saturday, March 16, 2002
Calimetrics announces ML technology roadmap to take optical disc capacity to 60 GB per side


Calimetrics, Inc., the emerging leader in data storage semiconductor and high-density optical media technologies, announced its ML (MultiLevel recording) technology roadmap for the optical disc drive and media market, extending capacities from 2 GB up to 60 GB per disc side. Complementary to existing and future optical storage standards, ML technology improves capacity and performance up to three fold by encoding significantly more information in a mark or pit location.

The ML technology roadmap includes five products: ML CD, ML DVD-7 “Super Combo”, ML DVD-10, ML DVD Blue-25 and ML Blu-ray-60. All of the products can be implemented by adding a single ML chip (or ML core designed into a host controller/decoder IC) to an optical disc drive writing unique ML-enhanced disc media.

They are designed to be backward compatible, with future versions of the ML family supporting the read/write capabilities of legacy formats. Starting today, these high-performance products enable the optical disc industry to serve enterprise storage, high-quality video, portable applications and beyond.

“As more and more consumers use DVDs, the demand for more capacity only increases. ML technology is a cost-effective means for manufacturers to extend the capabilities and life of their existing products lines and create interesting new consumer electronics devices,” said John Freeman, President of Strategic Marketing Decisions.

“Manufacturers need to offer high capacity at consumer prices today. ML technology is the right alternative to meet the cost objectives of the market.”

ML CD

ML technology is available now for integration into CD-R/RW drives in enterprise and desktop data storage markets as well as professional and consumer audio and video applications. Announced today, the ML ENDEC IC from Sanyo Semiconductor Company (Sanyo part number LC898050) utilizes eight level ML recording and achieves 2.5 bits/data-cell, resulting in ML CD-R/RW drives and discs with 2 GB capacity.

ML DVD-7 “Super Combo”

The Sanyo ML ENDEC can also be designed into DVD recordable and rewritable drives with a 0.65 NA lens to achieve 7.1 GB of capacity and a 50 percent improvement in write and read speeds (data transfer rate). ML technology can enhance any DVD recording format with no change to DVD optics or mechanics, and is compatible with dye recording formats, such as DVD-R and DVD+R, as well as phase-change recording formats, such as DVD-RW, DVD+RW, and DVD-RAM. An ML “Super Combo” drive utilizing the ML ENDEC gives users four capacity and speed options: CD-R/W (700 MB) and DVD+/-R/RW (4.7 GB) for playback compatible recordings, plus ML-enhanced CD (2 GB) recorded at 48 times CD speed, and DVD (7.1 GB) discs recording 50 percent faster than the drive’s native speed.

ML DVD-10

Calimetrics has developed and tested ML technology on an industry-standard DVD test base demonstrating the potential for 10GB capacity per disc side. This system utilizes 12 levels with a density of 3.1 bits/data-cell and will be implemented in the next generation HD ML ENDEC chip currently under development, with availability expected later next year. The HD ML ENDEC can also be implemented as a core in a host controller/decoder IC.

ML DVD Blue-25

With the addition of a blue laser to the above ML DVD-10 drive, the same HD ML ENDEC chip described immediately above can extend disc capacity to ML DVD Blue at 25 GB per side. By using DVD-type optics and disc media thickness, this ML DVD Blue-25 system can attain 25 GB per side while maintaining backward compatibility with recordable and rewritable DVD formats. Unlike the recently announced “Blu-ray” format(below), the ML DVD Blue-25 drive can also write and read standard 4.7 GB DVD discs.

Furthermore, the ML DVD Blue-25 recording media can be manufactured on existing DVD media production lines, without the addition of a cartridge and an optical transmittance protection layer.

ML Blu-ray-60

The recently announced “Blu-ray Disc” format combines a higher-power lens with a 405nm blue-violet laser and a recording media optical protection layer to achieve 23 GB to 27 GB per disc side. By joining the HD ML ENDEC described above with this type of blue-laser format, ML technology can enable a drive to write and read 60 GB per side on a single-sided, single layer 12cm CD/DVD size disc.

“The beauty of ML technology is that it truly is platform independent and complementary to other optical media storage products. By leveraging existing optics and infrastructure as well as ML-specific firmware, it provides a very cost effective means to attain extremely large data storage capacities and transfer rates in the CD and DVD markets and beyond,” stated Ken Campbell, President and CEO of Calimetrics. “Our roadmap of proven ML technologies provides manufacturers with a compelling, backward compatible way to extend the longevity of existing CD products and to significantly increase the advantages of new technologies, like Blu-ray disc.”


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