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Dual Disc delivers

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Sony BMG's new Dual Disc is proving to be a major success. Some of the biggest recent chart success, including hot new artist Omario's new album and the latest offering by Bruce Springsteen, have been used to promote the format. The Dual Disc aims at tearing down the borders between music CDs and the DVD, two of the biggest commercial breakthroughs of the last decades. Basically, what the Dual Disc does, is to glue a CD and a DVD together, so you don't need to switch from one format to another but can just flip the disc and use the other side to continue from listening to some songs to enjoying a documentary on the artist. If reports are not exagerated, some consumers have even stepped back to their retailer and asked for their simple music CD to be exchanged for a Dual Disc after they found out about it. For now, all available albums seem to be Pop- and Rock-Productions but we will try to find out, whether some Classical CDs will be available as well. Sony is offering this product via its DADC facility, so if you're a record company, check out their homepage for further information.

Unfortunately, not all is well with regards to this story. The reason for this is that legendary German rock producer Dieter Dierks had already developed the idea and the necessary technology at the end of the 90s. His "DVD-Plus".System has already been used for many millions of albums, including one by German rock star number one, Herbert Grönemeyer. According to insiders, DVD Plus is superior to the Dual Disc, as goes to the error rate in production. As Dierks' patent is still pending for some countries and he didn't apply for one in the States, the introduction of the Dual Disc will take more time in different countries. At present, Sony seems unwilling to use Dierks invention in Europe, so it looks like we're heading for a new "War of the Formats".

Homepage: Sony DADC - Dual Disc
Source: Rolling Stone, May 2005: "Der Krieg der Formate", pages 14&15

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