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OWC Announces High-Performance Mercury Pro Desktop Optical Drive

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Other World Computing announced today the availability of the new OWC Mercury Pro, a sleek aluminum-housed USB 3.1 Gen 1 optical drive for plug and play support of CD, DVD, M-DISC and/or Blu-ray disc reading and writing with Macs and PCs.

owc mercury pro optical drive

The new OWC Mercury Pro conveniently brings optical media back to your workflow with high-speed USB 3.1 Gen 1 connectivity for playback of optical media, data transfer and archiving with bandwidth to spare. With a sleek, durable aluminum chassis, the Mercury Pro delivers looks to match its performance while running cooler, quieter and better than ever.

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ASUS Announces DRW-24D5MT Power-Saving 24x DVD Writer

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ASUS Japan sent out a press release earlier today, announcing its new 24x DVD writer, the DRW-24D5MT. Along with support for Millenniata's M-DISC format, the drive is capable of 24x DVD±R, 8x DVD±R DL, 5x DVD-RAM, 8x DVD+RW and 6x DVD-RW writing speeds and a maximum DVD read speed of 16x. The DRW-24D5MT also feature's ASUS's E-Green technology, which puts the drive into an energy-saving mode when it is not in use. According to the company, this reduces power consumption by more than 50%.

asus drw-24d5mt

The DRW-24D5MT ships with burning and backup software from CyberLink and Nero and is expected to cost about 2,500 Yen ($20US) when it hits stores later this month.

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Sony Pictures Home Entertainment Unveils First 4K Ultra HD Discs

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sony 4k ultrahd hancockSony Pictures Home Entertainment (SPHE) today announced the studio's first releases in the next-generation 4K Ultra HD™ Disc format, which will arrive in early 2016.

"By some estimates, consumers will own over 100 million Ultra HD television sets by 2019. Sony Pictures' 4K Ultra HD Discs will deliver consumers the ultimate home theater experience, with stunning picture and sound quality," said SPHE president, Man Jit Singh.

Singh continued, "Ten years ago this month, Sony Pictures Home Entertainment authored the world's first feature film on Blu-ray Disc™, and we continue to bring consumers the most innovative, immersive home entertainment experiences available."

SPHE's first 4K Ultra HD releases will include The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Salt, Hancock, Chappie, Pineapple Express, and The Smurfs 2, followed by a growing roster of titles including new release film and television content.

SPHE's 4K Ultra HD Discs feature four times the resolution of HD and include high dynamic range (HDR), which produces brilliant highlights, vibrant colors and greater contrast on compatible displays. Many titles will also support next-generation immersive audio formats.

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CyberLink Joins Ultra HD Blu-ray Development Group

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CyberLink Corp., today announced that they have joined a global focus group consisting of professional authoring facilities, technology companies and service providers working on the development of the Ultra HD Blu-ray (UHD-BD) format.

The UHDG focus group, established by professional Blu-ray Disc authoring system developer Scenarist, seeks to ensure the successful launch of UHD-BD through a collaboration that allows members to gain expertise in the new format, create test titles and provide feedback during the development phase.

CyberLink is providing UHDG members with PC-based player software for testing 4K H.265 and High Dynamic Range (HDR) video titles as well as digital bridge production export functionality. The collaboration will help ensure the compatibility of Ultra HD Blu-ray titles across CE and PC-based playback environments.

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Blu-ray Disc Association to Commence Licensing Of Ultra HD Blu-ray

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The Blu-ray Disc Association (BDA) will commence licensing the Ultra HD Blu-ray format starting August 24, 2015. The format represents the work of global leaders from the consumer electronics, IT and content creation industries and will enable consistent and reliable delivery of Ultra HD content to the rapidly growing number of Ultra HD households, expected to grow from 11.7 million Ultra HD TVs in 2014 to 95.6 million in 2019.

blu-ray ultra hd logo

Ultra HD Blu-ray is a critical component of the expanding Ultra HD ecosystem that redefines in-home entertainment through advances in resolution, contrast, color and audio, providing a sensory experience that replicates the richness of life’s sight and sounds and more accurately reflects the content creator’s intent.

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Sony to Acquire Optical Archive Inc.

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sony logoSony Corporation of America (SCA) today announced that it has acquired Optical Archive Inc. (OAI), a company that specializes in optical storage systems for the data center market.  The acquisition is made by SCA on behalf of Sony Corporation.

With Sony, OAI will leverage its experience and capabilities in data center hardware design, supply chain operations and systems integration with Sony's expertise in optical disc and manufacturing technology to develop new optical disc library systems that will meet the technological demands from the growing cold archive market.

The term "cold archive" refers to a class of data that must be retained over a long period of time but isn't accessed frequently, such as cloud-based photo storage and data retained for legal or regulatory reasons. Cold archive is the largest and fastest growing portion of the data center storage market.

"This acquisition marks the beginning of our commitment to this growing market," said Terushi Shimizu, Senior Vice President and Deputy President, Device Solutions Business Group, Sony Corporation.  "Optical disc libraries will provide many advantages to customers who are currently using tape or hard drive technology to store cold data, such as lower costs, extremely durable media life, and higher data throughput rates. We plan to leverage and expand our existing optical disc production lines in order to accommodate the growing demand for this media."

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Blu-ray Disc Association Completes Ultra HD Blu-ray Specification

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The Blu-ray Disc Association (BDA) today announced completion of the Ultra HD Blu-ray specification and released the new logo that will delineate Ultra HD Blu-ray products. The Ultra HD Blu-ray specification, which represents the work of global leaders from the consumer electronics, IT and content creation industries, will enable delivery of Ultra HD content via Ultra HD Blu-ray Disc to the rapidly growing number of UHD TV households.

blu-ray ultra hd logo

“For years, Blu-ray Disc has set the standard for high definition picture and audio quality in the home. Ultra HD Blu-ray will do the same for UHD home entertainment," said Victor Matsuda, chair, BDA Promotions Committee. “The technical capabilities of Blu-ray Disc, in particular its significant storage capacity and high data transfer rates, will enable the delivery of an unparalleled, consistent and repeatable UHD experience."

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Pioneer Announces BDR-XS06JL Portable Slot-Loading Blu-ray Disc Writer

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Pioneer Japan sent out a press today, announcing its new portable, slot-loading Blu-ray Disc writer, the BDR-XS06JL. Designed for use with both Macs and Windows PCs, this USB 3.0 equipped drive is capable of 6x BD-R, 6x BD-R DL, 6x BD-R LTH, 2x BD-RE and 2x BD-RE DL writing speeds and a maximum BD-ROM read speed of 6x. The BDR-XS06JL also writes to triple- (100GB) and quad-layer (128GB) BD-R media at 4x and triple-layer (100GB) BD-RE media at 2x.

pioneer bdr-xs06jl

The BDR-XS06JL includes features like Pioneer's PureRead2+ technology, noise reducing firmware and an "intelligent eco mode" that automatically cuts unnecessary power. The drive is also compatible with the company's APS-WF01J wireless dock, which lets it be used with iOS devices like the iPhone and iPad. The BDR-XS06JL is expected to hit stores later this month for about 14,000 Yen ($118US).

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Nero Announces Volume Licensing And SecurDisc 3.0 Technology For SMBs And Enterprises

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With reports of cyber warfare, new NSA scandals or massive data thefts (i.e. Sony) increasing by the day, businesses worldwide seem helpless and ask the most critical question in 2015: How can we protect our most critical business information and data archives when even the most secure cloud services or server farms can’t?

Germany-based Nero AG faced this challenge and advises corporations to store their most sensitive data on optical media, preventing any online access and therefore drastically reducing the risk of exposure. As a leader in creation of physical media with Nero’s world-famous application Nero Burning ROM and its built-in SecurDisc 3.0 technology, Nero has the right solution for companies seeking to physically protect their data. And with the new Volume Licensing model available for core Nero products, businesses have an easier-than-ever way to roll out this data protection technique corporate-wide.

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Roxio Introduces Secure Burn Enterprise

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roxio secure burn enterpriseRoxio introduces Roxio Secure Burn Enterprise, a complete data burning solution that enables corporate, institutional and government customers to monitor, control and protect confidential information saved to storage discs and devices. Powerful administrative tools help IT departments establish and enforce security protocols across the organization. FIPS 140-2 compliance allows organizations to meet government requirements for securing data. Drag and drop tools make it easy for employees to burn to CD, DVD, Blu-ray Discs as well as memory cards and USB drives.

"With confidential information being saved on discs and USB drives every day, something as simple as losing an unsecured DVD can turn into a disaster no business can afford. Organizations need an easy-to-use way to protect themselves from the legal risk, lost business and high cost of a data breach," said Michel Yavercovski, Director of Product Management at Roxio. "Inexpensive and simple to implement, Secure Burn Enterprise protects your data and reputation."

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