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AVCHD Format Discussion
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Old July 30th, 2006, 10:49 AM   #1
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AVCHD can not play on today's DVD players?

I read something that AVCHD can not play on today's DVD players, is this true? Or when the video editing software tools start supporting AVCHD most likely in their next release should it be possible to edit the video and then write the video so that it can be played on todays DVD players (i.e. non Blue Ray or HD-DVD)?
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Old July 30th, 2006, 10:53 AM   #2
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Hi Albert, welcome aboard (H)DV Info Net.

Basically the only format you can store on a DVD is MPEG-2 (that is not 100%
accurate, but it is good enough for this dicsussion).

So no, today's DVD players cannot play back AVCHD.

However, a lot of DVD players these days can also play DiVX encoded video
for example. So it may be feasible for a manufacturer to add support for AVCHD
files when they are burned as regular data files. I would not hold my breath
on that one though :)

Almost any footage you can playback / edit on your computer can be converted
into this MPEG-2 format for DVD delivery. So if software comes (or is available)
with this camera's to edit the AVCHD footage then, yes, it can be converted
into a DVD format.

Of course you go from HD to SD in that case.
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Old July 30th, 2006, 11:02 AM   #3
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Thanks Rob. I guess I find it confusing that I can play HD DVD's on a standard DVD player so why wouldn't updated software supporting AVCHD be able to write out a DVD that would support HD as well? Why would it only be able to be written out as SD? MPEG-2 does not support HD? What format are professional stamped DVD movies in? Sorry for my ignorance.

Are we saying then that the only way to play a HD video with some of these new cameras coming out then will be to plug the video camera into the HD TV or purchase a Blue-Ray/HD-DVD DVD player?

Thanks again, appreciate your expertise.
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Old July 30th, 2006, 11:08 AM   #4
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How can you play HD DVD's on a current DVD player? As far as I know, you can't.

I do have heard that certain HD DVD titles have two sides. One of which is
the HD DVD side and the other is plain regular DVD. Obviously any DVD player
can play that side.

All current DVD players are SD (some have the ability to up convert to HD, but
that's another story).

In theory one may be able to upgrade a firwmare to make it read AVCHD, but
then again, they can sell you a completely new player. Which route do you
think the manufacturers are going to take?

All regular DVD's are indeed SD and all professional pressed discs are in MPEG-2.

MPEG-2 can indeed do HD, but the DVD spec does not allow for this. In other
words, players will not (or at least should not) play back a HD MPEG-2 stream
because it is not DVD (spec) compliant.

Since H.264 is in the HD DVD & Blu-Ray specs it probably will be fairly trivial
in the future to get AVCHD onto such discs (speculation from me).

To the best of my knowledge there are 3 ways to show your footage in HD
on a HDTV. The first is to indeed hook up your camcorder as long as it can
talk HD with the HDTV (no idea if that's possible, I don't own a HD camera).

The second would be to record a DVHS tape. The last would be to get your
footage aired in HD on a HD channel :)

That should sum it all up for you....
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Old July 30th, 2006, 02:08 PM   #5
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Not all of the current DVD players are strictly SD. The IOData Linkplayer2 and the JVC device made from the same parts are both capable of playing WMV-HD and M2T files out the component video ports.

It does not use either of the two new technologies, but it does the job quite nicely.
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Old July 30th, 2006, 03:16 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Lohman
How can you play HD DVD's on a current DVD player? As far as I know, you can't.

I do have heard that certain HD DVD titles have two sides. One of which is
the HD DVD side and the other is plain regular DVD. Obviously any DVD player
can play that side.
I don't know whether the technology has been practically implemented, but a three layer disc was demonstrated where each side could play on a standard DVD player (in SD, obviously) or in a blue laser machine in HD.

AFAIK, it relied upon the HD layer being above the two conventional DVD layers. Being transparent to red light it was ignored in conventional DVD machines, whereas it could be read by the blue laser in an HD DVD machine.
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Old July 30th, 2006, 09:01 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Lohman
How can you play HD DVD's on a current DVD player? As far as I know, you can't.
I do know what you mean Rob - by current DVD players, you're meaning 99% of the DVD players people use & own.

But besides the Linkplayer2 that someone else mentioned...
there's Toshiba's new HD-A1 player can play HD-DVD's, ordinary DVD´s, CD Audio, VCD, DVD-RAM, DVD-R/W, CD-R/W. - pretty much anything and people seem pretty stunned by its performance on commercially available HD-DVD's generally.

So it's a current DVD player, it's here, it's now:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/cont...=413991&is=REG
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Old July 31st, 2006, 06:44 AM   #8
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I do not consider the HD-A1 a DVD player. That is a HD DVD player with
backwards compatibility. Otherwise you could say that a DVD player is a
VideoCD player instead of a DVD player ;)
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Old July 31st, 2006, 11:17 AM   #9
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You can make a HD-DVD disk on a DVD disk that can have both the file structures for DVD and HD-DVD.

The reason a DVD player cannot play a true HD-DVD is because the player does not have a blue laser. Only a blue laser can read the pits on a HD-DVD disk. No firmware can upgrade the type of laser in the player. In order for a DVD player to play a HD-DVD disk it would have to have red and blue laser inside which would basically make it a HD-DVD player then.

The double sided HD-DVD's have a HD-DVD on one side and a DVD that uses a red laser on the other side.

What we might see is a DVD player that will play HD content on a red laser DVD disk like the IO player but not an actual HD-DVD disk.

There is also the issue of authoring specs. HD-DVD authoring is a lot different than DVD authoring. There is no way a normal DVD player would even know what to do with a HD-DVD authoring structure.

The IO player can only read HD content on red laser DVD's that is striaght video and audio. No chapters and no menu structure.

I have been playing around with HD-DVD authoring and it is a form of XML programming. It is a lot more complex than DVD authoring.
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Old August 1st, 2006, 04:58 PM   #10
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Thomas,

I have created an HD DVD using Ulead DVD MovieFactory 5, then burning onto standard dvd-r. I then took the disk to neighborhood BB, and played it on their Toshiba HD-A1. Apparently the HD-A1 will play a properly formated HD DVD - even on red laser disc.

The disc contained one folder "HVDVD_TS", which contained three file types, with IFO, BUP, and EVO extensions. "HV000I01.BUP", "HV000I01.IFO", and "HV000T01.EVO" are three examples. The EVO files are large, and obviously contain video and audio. There was one "HV000M02.EVO" file, which I would guess to be menu information.

Apparently HD DVD will accept either MP2 or MP4 files. The Ulead pgm would only create mp2 files, so program length would be limited on red laser discs.

My (early) version of MF5 could author both HD DVD and BR discs, but some of those capabilities have apparently been stripped from later versions of the pgm.
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