Audio Video News

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 |  Jul 16, 2000  |  0 comments

The market for DVD recorders is expected to explode in the near future, and major manufacturers are positioning themselves to benefit. In mid-July, Japanese electronics firms <A HREF="">Sharp Corporation</A> and <A HREF="">Pioneer Corporation</A> announced an alliance to cooperate on the development of new digital products, in particular DVD recorders.

Jon Iverson  |  Jul 16, 2000  |  0 comments

Musicians and record labels have long been able to back up their bragging with gold records hanging on their walls, but film directors and movie studios have had to rely on mere sales statistics when it came to a DVD's success. But last week, the Video Software Dealers Association (VSDA) announced the first eight titles to qualify under its new DVD Certification Program to recognize "outstanding sales performance" of DVD titles. The titles were announced during the Association's 19th Annual Convention in Las Vegas by VSDA president Bo Andersen.

 |  Jul 09, 2000  |  0 comments

As the <A HREF="">Consumer Electronics Association</A> sees it, the Digital Versatile Disc player is one of the most successful electronic products ever introduced. The format was introduced late in 1996, and began to gather momentum in 1998. Last year the players flew off dealers' shelves as prices approached the $200 level and the film industry began cranking out thousands of titles. DVD has been a huge hit in the US, which is in the midst of one of the longest economic upswings in history.

Jon Iverson  |  Jul 09, 2000  |  0 comments

Last week, semiconductor developer <A HREF="">Silicon Image</A> announced that it has completed the acquisition of <A HREF="">DVDO</A>. Silicon Image says that this acquisition positions the company to extend its Digital Visual Interface (DVI) technology leadership beyond the PC market and into emerging digital consumer-electronics applications such as digital TVs, DVD players, and set-top boxes for high-definition video.

Jon Iverson  |  Jul 09, 2000  |  0 comments

Several eagerly awaited special DVD releases are poised to hit the shelves in coming months. <I>American Beauty</I>, winner of five Academy Awards earlier this year, will debut on DVD on October 24. DreamWorks says that the film will be released in a special "Awards Edition," which will include a "storyboard" feature with commentary by director Sam Mendes and director of cinematography Conrad L. Hall, as well as a "Making of" featurette.

 |  Jul 09, 2000  |  0 comments

Plastic film may soon be coming to a home theater near you&mdash;not as a food wrap, but as a video screen. London-based <A HREF="">Cambridge Display Technology</A> (CDT), in association with its Japanese partner, Seiko Epson, has announced a new development that bonds light-emitting polymers (LEPs) to such film. Properly charged, the red, blue, and green pixels will emit bright light while using very little power. Unlike liquid-crystal displays, LEPs require no backlight and have a wide dispersion pattern.

Dan Yakir  |  Jul 09, 2000  |  0 comments

D<I>oris Day, John Raitt, Carol Haney, Eddie Foy, Jr., Barbara Nichols. Directed by George Abbott and Stanley Donen. Aspect ratios: 1.85:1 (widescreen), 1.33:1 (full-frame). Dolby Digital mono. 101 minutes. 1957. Warner Home Video 35085. NR. $19.95.</I>

Michael Metzger  |  Jul 02, 2000  |  0 comments

C<I>lark Gable, Claudette Colbert, Walter Connolly, Roscoe Karns, Jameson Thomas. Directed by Frank Capra. Aspect ratio: 1.33:1 (full-frame). Dolby Digital mono. 105 minutes. 1934. Columbia 03949. NR. $24.95.</I>

Jon Iverson  |  Jul 02, 2000  |  0 comments

Last week, <A HREF="">Pioneer North America</A> announced plans to open the newest addition to its North American operation: Pioneer Research Center USA (referred to as PRA), which the company describes as a new research-and-development unit. Pioneer says that PRA will open in San Jose, California on July 5 and will develop both digital television and digital network technologies to be incorporated into audio-video products sold primarily in the US market.

Barry Willis  |  Jul 02, 2000  |  0 comments

Two years ago it was widely predicted that, by summer 2000, high-definition television would be pretty well established. At mid-year of that target date, the industry is still bickering over technical specifications and terminology, receiver prices are still high, and there is only a token amount of HD programming available.

Barry Willis  |  Jul 02, 2000  |  0 comments

Walter Matthau, the gruff-voiced, droopy-faced master of deadpan comic acting, died early Saturday morning, July 1, after suffering a heart attack. He was pronounced dead at 1:42am, shortly after being taken to St. John's Health Center in Santa Monica, California. Matthau was 79.

Barry Willis  |  Jun 25, 2000  |  0 comments

Ever wonder how all those short films you never heard of get nominated for Academy Awards? They have to run for a weekend at theaters in Los Angeles or New York in order for <A HREF="">Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences</A> members to get a chance to view them. Those are the rules, the Academy stated on June 13, after deciding to exclude from Oscar consideration any film debuting on the Internet.

Thomas J. Norton  |  Jun 25, 2000  |  0 comments

V<I>oices of Jennifer Aniston, Eli Marienthal, Harry Connick, Jr., Vin Diesel, Christopher McDonald. Directed by Brad Bird. Aspect ratios: 2.35:1 (anamorphic), 1.33:1 (full-frame). Dolby Digital 5.1. 99 minutes. 1999. Warner Home Video 17644. PG. $24.95.</I>

 |  Jun 25, 2000  |  0 comments

Last week, <A HREF="">EchoStar Communications</A> announced that the DISH HD Model 6000, an integrated satellite television receiver with the ability to receive high-definition television (HDTV) signals, is now available at select DISH Network retail outlets. The 6000 is the company's newest high-definition satellite TV receiver and is priced at $499.

Jon Iverson  |  Jun 25, 2000  |  0 comments

It's a DTV jungle out there, with manufacturers, broadcasters, consumers, and other market forces fighting for their ecological niches. Always an aggressive participant in the struggle, the <A HREF="">Consumer Electronics Association</A> (CEA), in comments filed with the Federal Communications Commission last week, stated that "ensuring that today's viewers continue to enjoy free, over-the-air service should be the primary focus of the digital television (DTV) transition." While new services should be "permitted and encouraged," argued the CEA, they should be consistent with broadcasters' "continued delivery of free over-the-air programming in the digital era."