Welcome to “The HD DVD Insiders,” Microsoft’s new HD DVD blog. This is our forum for our passionate employees to talk about the format, our VC-1 codec, and what we’re doing to provide consumers with the world’s best HD content.
Microsoft is involved with HD DVD in many ways, all of which we’ll discuss here. The two big areas we contribute technology for are VC-1, the codec used in many HD titles, and HDiTM, Microsoft’s implementation of the advanced interactivity specification for HD DVD.
- The VC-1 codec is being used to compress the video in the vast majority of HD DVD titles. VC-1 is the SMPTE [421M ]standard based on Microsoft’s Windows Media Video 9 technology. We work with the studios and authoring houses to enable the visually transparent compression quality to the master that’s become a hallmark of HD DVD titles.
- HDiTM is Microsoft’s implementation of the HD DVD advanced interactivity layer. HDiTM provides the interactive menus, picture-in-picture commentaries, in movie experience and other features that make HD DVD not just better video and audio than DVD, but a more compelling and immersive experience.
- Microsoft announced the Xbox 360 HD DVD Player will be available this holiday. As we get closer to launch, we’ll discuss the product, its development, and the consumer experience here.
One of our secret weapons is that many of the people working on HD DVD were passionate home theater enthusiasts long before HD DVD was born. So we spend our days focused on providing the spectacular home theater experience that we also want for ourselves in the evening.
We hope this blog will help us pull the veil back a little, and give you some insight into the people and stories behind the making of a world class format and exciting content.