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BDXL promises 128GB Blu-ray discs

BDXL promises 128GB Blu-ray discs

The new BDXL format increases the data that can fit onto a single Blu-ray disc to 128GB - but will require new hardware.

The organisation behind the Blu-ray standard has announced an extension to the spec, which promises discs holding a massive 128GB in the none-too-distant future.

The new specification, BDXL, increases the capacity from the current 50GB to either 100GB for re-writable Blu-ray media or 128GB for write-once discs.

Aimed at providing industrial-strength data storage for archiving and backup purposes, it'll be a while before the increased capacity hits the consumer level - and there's some bad news on the horizon when it does, as use of the BDXL discs will require entirely new hardware.

While the Blu-ray Disc Association has promised that hardware designed for BDXL use will be backwards-compatible with existing Blu-ray media, there's no forwards compatibility - in other words, if you've already invested in a Blu-ray writer for your data storage needs you're going to need to buy entirely new equipment if you want the enhanced data storage capacities offered by BDXL.

BDXL has been announced alongside a second format, IH-BD - a hybrid format which provides both a 25GB read-only layer and a second 25GB re-writable layer on a single disc. The concept for IH-BD is that the user will be able to view - but not modify - pre-recorded data on the disc while simultaneously adding their own supplementary data onto the second layer.

Although neither of the new specifications is aimed at the entertainment industry directly, the ability to include even more content is likely to drive adoption at some point in the future - and the idea of a disc which can have data written to it, potentially locking a film to a single playback device and killing the second-hand market, is something which Hollywood is going to find extremely tempting.

So far the Blu-ray Disc Association hasn't provided any details on planned implementations of either specification.

Are you looking forward to the day when a 100GB re-writable disc is something the average consumer can afford, or have cheap external hard drives all but taken over the backup and data archiving market? Are you worried at what horrors future DRM implementations could achieve with a game or film disc that can be modified? Share your thoughts over in the forums.

24 Comments

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l3v1ck 5th April 2010, 08:36 Quote
I wouldn't trust optical discs for long term backup regardless of their capacity. They're too easily damaged.
Omnituens 5th April 2010, 09:03 Quote
To be fair, Blu-ray disks are far more durable than normal DVDs.
Mraedis 5th April 2010, 09:06 Quote
What's the read/write speed of these things?
do_it_anyway 5th April 2010, 10:48 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Omnituens
To be fair, Blu-ray disks are far more durable than normal DVDs.

Are they? I thought they were LESS durable due to the information being so close to the surface of the disc
Blademrk 5th April 2010, 11:31 Quote
Quote:
the idea of a disc which can have data written to it, potentially locking a film to a single playback device and killing the second-hand market, is something which Hollywood is going to find extremely tempting.

That sounds ominous, I don't like the idea of a film being locked to a single playback device - don't know about you, but I've got a dvd player in more than one room (and will probably upgrade to BR at some point once they become cheap enough) and if that kicks off it's going to make all but one of them redundant.
rollo 5th April 2010, 11:38 Quote
i think it will have a retricted usage limitation built into the disk so if you use it on say 3 blue ray players in the house that would be fine

but once you say hit 5 it wont work anymore ( who has 5 blueray players lol)
Blademrk 5th April 2010, 12:31 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by rollo
i think it will have a retricted usage limitation built into the disk so if you use it on say 3 blue ray players in the house that would be fine

but once you say hit 5 it wont work anymore ( who has 5 blueray players lol)

10/15 years ago I would have said the same thing about DVD players, however just totalling up the number of them I've gone through over the last 10-15 years it's close to 20 different players:

Ranging from the DVD drives in PC's (over several builds I've had 4 DVD drives);
a portable player;
I've upgraded from a standard DVD player in the living room to a DVD/Video combi player (which has died) to a DVD/HDD Recorder (which has also died) to a HDMI DVD/HDD recorder and added a BR player as well;
In my bedroom, I've got a DVD player with surround sound as well as another recorder that's without the consoles (xbox, PS2, 360 and I'm on my 2nd round of each of those too (with the first one either dying or being nicked by my brother when he moved out));
There's a DVD player in the other 2 bedrooms too (and one of those has just been replaced after it stopped playing DVD's).

I've bought a hell of a lot of DVD's in that time and I would be p****d if I could only use them with the first 5 players I got.
eddtox 5th April 2010, 12:37 Quote
Nobody ever said DRM was good for the consumer. I, for one, haven't got a Blu-Ray player and I'm not really planning to get one. All the initial fuss about it left a sour taste in my mouth, and I prefer hard-drives and digital media anyway.
Veles 5th April 2010, 13:26 Quote
Completely agree with BladeMRK here, my family has gone through several DVD players by now.

It also cuts out being able to bring one over to your mates house and the rental market.

But this is really only a second hand sales solution to me, something that's not a huge problem for movies in the same way it is for console games. Like music, if people buy a movie they tend to keep it.
Nature 5th April 2010, 14:01 Quote
Cheese noodles!
NethLyn 5th April 2010, 14:08 Quote
Ok hard discs are now 2TB and rising so no problem with 130Gb at a time of temporary backup. However they'd better get on with dumping off the old drives and moving to the new ones ASAP, then the cost will stay around £80-100.

Limiting the number of players rather than the number of region changes with a computer drive is a dumb idea. Sony's pulling its Double Density CD-RW nonsense with Blu Ray, sadly because they won the format war they just might succeed in forcing it on the consumer.
talladega 5th April 2010, 16:38 Quote
its just like dual layer dvd burners. same thing except way bigger improvement in storage.




in my family we are still using our first dvd player that we bought. you guys need to be more careful.
Blademrk 5th April 2010, 18:22 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by talladega
you guys need to be more careful.


:) of the 4 that broke:

Sanyo DVD/Video Combi-player - It's surprising how flimsy a DVD tray is - the tray would get stuck (part of the worm gear track inside had snapped somehow).

The Thompson player we had (which we bought back in '99) just stopped reading some discs late last year, others it would read without a problem.

The Panasonic HDD/DVD Recorder would get stuck in a start up loop. It would try to read a disk, the display would die and it would re-start and go through this loop until you got lucky and it would finish reading the disc and display the DVD menu (apparently a known issue on this model). This could take upwards of half an hour (or 5 minutes if your lucky).

X-Box 360 launch unit - RROD x2 (2nd time out of warranty, so just replaced it - will try to fix this myself at some point) Microsoft also replaced the DVD drive when they replaced the motherboard on the 1st RROD (again dodgy worm gear track, wouldn't open when 360 was vertical, worked fine when horizontal).

The other units just got upgraded over time.
Star*Dagger 5th April 2010, 21:04 Quote
Watch a show or film on normal dvd and then on a 51 inch blu-ray set up with decent speakers the difference is night and day.

I would like to see someone make a monitor that is the equivalent of 3 27" monitors in eyefinity, one screen rather than three. Or at least get above the 30 inch size for monitors.
Sloth 5th April 2010, 21:11 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by talladega
its just like dual layer dvd burners. same thing except way bigger improvement in storage.




in my family we are still using our first dvd player that we bought. you guys need to be more careful.
My parents just bought their first DVD player two years ago. They don't have to be careful when their products are hopelessly outdated in a couple of years :(

That said, the PS2 has worked perfectly for several years now. PS3 just continues that legacy of capable media playing consoles.
TSR2 5th April 2010, 21:15 Quote
How long will it take to write 100GB of data? Although on the plus side, with 500GB of storage ~£40, as long as these discs are <£5 ea, they'll be cost effective, and just loading one into the drive for a full system backup is much more attractive than sticking around with a big pile of DVD's (how long ago were people saying this about CD's as opposed to floppies?)
eternum 5th April 2010, 21:19 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by talladega
you guys need to be more careful.

And you need to be less of a prat.

Use leads to wear and wear leads to failure. Your single data point doesn't invalidate the laws of physics or the fact that most electronics are made in such a way as to be readily available and cheap - even the best brands have a failure rate.
wafflesomd 5th April 2010, 22:34 Quote
How about portable 128gig media that you can't ruin by simply scratching it?
talladega 6th April 2010, 02:20 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by eternum
And you need to be less of a prat.

Use leads to wear and wear leads to failure. Your single data point doesn't invalidate the laws of physics or the fact that most electronics are made in such a way as to be readily available and cheap - even the best brands have a failure rate.
Ouch....looks like you've been butthurt. Don't worry I've called the Wahmbulance for you.

http://i57.photobucket.com/albums/g238/Brian_D_photos/Misc%20Pictures/Favorites/9d975dfa.jpg
Xir 6th April 2010, 09:26 Quote
The 50GB empty disk is >10euros...the 25GB at about 5 € but a writer is still 170euros.

If they want to replace DVD's in the long run, the prices for hardware has to come down first.
Quote:
its just like dual layer dvd burners. same thing except way bigger improvement in storage.
Correct, and who uses dual layer writable DVD's? Due to their price, next to noone...
leexgx 6th April 2010, 16:57 Quote
stop flameing

no one as a lot of the time they do not work in the past with every ones drive had issues with dual layer disks and had limited Writeing speeds, (some PC games and all Xbox 360 games are dual layer)

BR disks are bit diferant as most moives are dual layer, so burnt DL BR disks should work in most if not all players, do remeber that DVD-RW drives used to cost £200 them selfs when for some time, most would likely only use single layer disks any way
SchizoFrog 6th April 2010, 22:10 Quote
Even if you spend around £160 on the very latest Blu-Ray Burners that write at x12 (Which is only possible at the outer area of the disc with it slowing down as you get nearer the center of the disc, much like you do with HDDs) You get a maximum write speed of what? Around 50MBps (400Mbps). So at maximum speed, across the disc (which isn't possible) it would take in excess of 35mins to burn 100GB of data. But in the real world this must be more like an excess of 2hrs.

Give me a portable external HDD any day.
The_Beast 6th April 2010, 22:18 Quote
Very cool but like a lot of people have said I'd rather have an external hard drive
Lazarus Dark 9th April 2010, 03:28 Quote
Now 4k resolution movies in a lossless video codec, please.
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