PlayStation 2, PlayStation and PS One owners were greeted earlier today with a warning about the new Dual Disc format and potential compatibility problems it may create with that product from Sony Computer Entertainment America (SCEA), the makers of these products. High Fidelity Review readers will recall that DualDisc is a new format invented by Warner Music that features DVD Video and/or DVD Audio content on one side and CD Audio content on the other side. Due to the DualDisc’s design, it has been refused permission by Philips to use the Compact Disc logo.
The newest alert from SCEA follows similar dealer and consumer advisories issued in recent days by Sony Electronics and Pioneer Electronics about potential incompatibilities between the new Dual Disc format and their optical disc players. It remains to be seen whether additional “alerts” will be forthcoming from other consumer electronics players.
The PlayStation 2 Dual Disc Advisory
Today’s news from Sony Computer Entertainment America (SCEA) consisted of a “consumer alert” issued by the company. The alert has now been posted on the SECA web site along with a set of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about the issue. The alert reads as follows:
“DualDisc is a new two-sided disc product introduced by some segments of the music industry, which mates DVD recorded material on one side with digital audio material on the other side. DualDisc is similar in size to a DVD and CD.
The DVD side of the DualDisc offers DVD video and DVD audio content that may include many of the features currently found in DVD discs including:
The audio side of the DualDisc does not meet the technical specifications to be called an Audio Compact Disc, set forth in the Redbook Audio Compact Disc specifications.
Because the DualDisc does not adhere to the industry Redbook specifications, the audio side of a DualDisc may not play correctly in PlayStation, PS one or PlayStation 2 consoles (including the redesigned SCPH-70000 series consoles). In addition, playing a DualDisc in an SCPH-30000 series, SCPH-35000 series, SCPH-39000 series, or SCPH-50000 series PlayStation 2 console while in the vertical position may possibly damage the disc, the console, or both.”
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Turning to the FAQs posted on the Sony Computer Entertainment America (SCEA) web site, the company makes the following statements about Dual Disc and their products:
We’ll continue to keep an eye on the emerging DualDisc format. As far as we know, the advisories issued to date has not had an impact on the plans of Warner Music, Silverline and Universal Music to release DualDisc product this month.
There is no word yet from some of the other companies whose products have experienced problems with Dual Disc playback according to consumers. It will be interesting in the days ahead to see if such statements from these firms are forthcoming.