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DualDisc - Read the fine print!

Written by Lasse Penttinen @ 16 May 2005 11:37 User comments (4)

DualDisc - Read the fine print! The new DualDisc format, a two sided disc with a CD and DVD side, carries an interesting disclaimer. According to the source the fine print says that the "DualDisc does not conform to CD specifications and may not play on all DVD and CD players". A few customers have been reporting problems, but currently it is not yet sure how common the compatibility problems are. The disclaimer however raises some concerns. Even more worrying are the disclaimers from the manufacturers of the CD and DVD players.
Most warn that DualDiscs may not play on their equipment, particularly slot-in devices where you insert a disc and the machine grabs and pulls it in. Some warn that the DualDiscs could get stuck or scratched. JVC and Onkyo flatly tell their customers not to use DualDisc products until further testing can be done.
... ''We've seen almost no problems at all. It's an infinitesimally small number of complaints compared to the million discs we've sold," said Thomas Hesse, president of global digital business for Sony BMG Music Entertainment, which makes and distributes DualDiscs.

As for all the warnings about playback problems, including those from his own corporate parent, Sony, Hesse said: ''It's a red herring in my mind."

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4 user comments

116.5.2005 12:27

This is just a massive CYA operation by the manufacturers. Yes the CD layer of DualDiscs technically does not meet the CD spec, because the CD spec is over 20 years old and does not contemplate dual layer discs (or two thin discs bonded together which is what a DualDisc actually is), but the disclaimers are probably the work of their lawyers. We have been covering this in detail over at HFR:

216.5.2005 15:07

I agree with ukexpat for the most part, but I purchased a DualDisc product, inserted it into my in-dash player and got scratches on the DVD side (top) of the disc. Obviously this is due to the additional thickness of the disc. It played fine, but I'm sure that repeated use will eventually degrade the performance of the DVD.

317.5.2005 3:23

I've said it before and I'll say it again: In what way is this better for consumers than a double disk (CD + DVD)? I can think of a couple of times I've bought CDs that had DVDs in as a second disk, the case wasn't any bigger and guess what? The CD plays fine in all cd players and the DVD plays fine in all DVD players. With the sheer volume of both kinds of disks in production, I can't believe that it's significantly cheaper to put a DualDisc product on a shelf than case containing one CD and one Dvd.

417.5.2005 16:48

It's probably more expensive...

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