Ricoh develops laser that reads both HD DVD and Blu-ray

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  All that talk about Samsung considering a joint Blu-ray and HD DVD player might not be as far-fetched as you might think, after it was revealed that Ricoh has developed a laser than can work with both formats.

Using a 1mm thick diffraction plate with concentric grooves on each side, the new lasers can recognise what kind of disc you’ve inserted into a drive (whether it’s HD DVD, BD or CD/DVD) and adjust the beam to play it. It certainly makes a combined player a significant step nearer, thoguh the chances of a combined writer are further off because of the extra power necessary to make up for light lost to diffraction.

Ricoh is hoping to start supplying manufacturers with these by the end of this year – so unless anyone throws up any legal complications, a hybrid player could be on the cards for early 2007.

Ricoh website

Via Engadget

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Dave Walker