Sony DADC today announced the production of its 10 millionth 50 Gigabyte Blu-ray Disc (BD50). Sony DADC manufactures BD50s in its three plants, located in Terre Haute, Indiana; Salzburg, Austria; and Shizuoka, Japan. The ten millionth BD50 was manufactured at Sony DADC's Terre Haute facility, and was "Spider-Man(TM) 3" from Columbia Pictures. Since the launch of this High Definition format, Sony DADC has produced more than 50 million Blu-ray Discs in its three plants, In addition, these three plants have a combined Blu-ray manufacturing capacity of 21 million discs per month.

"A year and a half ago, when the dual-layer 50 Gigabyte Blu-ray Disc was introduced it caused a stir amongst the content creation industry," said Bob Hurley, EVP, Sales and Marketing. "The exceptionally high storage capacity enables movie studios to present their titles in the very best High Definition visual and audio quality. Furthermore, these huge capacity discs provide opportunities to load added value content, such as bonus material, interviews with the actors and production team, plus rich BD-Java-based interactivity designed to provide a complete entertainment experience." Since Blu-ray Disc manufacturing began in Terre Haute in May '06, capacity and yield rates have consistently climbed. "BD25 yield rates and machine output performance have exceeded our expectations.

Single layer yields are consistently around 85% and daily machine output levels are approaching parity with our DVD assets," said Mike Mitchell, EVP Sony DADC. "With regard to BD50, yields have increased steadily, and are consistently between 75% and 79%. Cycle times for BD50 have likewise been improved dramatically. As demand for both BD25 and BD50 increases and the production lines are run more consistently, we fully anticipate further yield improvements."

To promote market development of Blu-ray Disc manufacturing, Sony DADC has worked with leading system integrators of disc replication equipment such as Singulus and Oerlikon in the areas of dual layer Blu-ray production technologies. As a result, both Singulus and Oerlikon have recently announced the shipping of their first BD50 production liners to their customers within the next few weeks.

Evan Jacobs at Movieweb
Evan Jacobs