format in 1982. The CDDA 2-channel stereo format has been extremely successful and
has been accepted as the replacement for the legacy vinyl album format. DVD-Audio
will now take digital audio to the next step with new features such as true multi-channel
high-resolution audio, visual menus, lyrics and high-resolution still pictures. DVD-Audio
brings the unprecedented sound quality and fullness of the live music experience into
the home. Together, DVD-Video and DVD-Audio technologies will become the center
of high-quality home entertainment.
manufacturers can introduce products that will play both DVD-Video and DVD-Audio
discs across the full price-point spectrum of consumer DVD products.
Key DVD-Audio specifications, contrasted with CDDA, are listed in Table 1.
Double-sided, single-layer: 9.4 GB
Double-sided, double layer: 17 GB
- More than 74 minutes of multi-
listening experience. CDDA quality sound is good, but the frequency response and
dynamic range of DVD-Audio takes sound quality to the next level, as discussed below.
of a sampled signal is ½ the sampling frequency. The CDDA sampling frequency of
44.1 kHz gives a frequency response of 22.05 kHz. Although this is above the hearing
limits of typical human detection, complaints of "flat" or "metallic" sound have circulated
around CDDA since its inception, in part due to lack of frequencies above 22.05 kHz.
DVD-Audio takes the sampling frequency up to 192 kHz, resulting in a frequency
response of 96 kHz. This increase in frequency content of music will bring out sounds
that are not possible with CDDA. See Figure 1.
a 16-bit sample resolution that can render a total of 65,536 equally spaced amplitudes
or 96dB of dynamic range. DVD-Audio, with up to 24-bit sample resolution, can render
a total of 16,777,216 equally spaced amplitudes or 144dB of dynamic range. This
drastically reduces distortion and allows the DVD-Audio player to accurately reproduce
sounds that are not possible with CDDA. See Figure 1.
shown in Figure 2. This stereo presentation gives the listener a feeling of spatial
placement of some parts of the music with the listening environment. The spatial
feeling is limited by audio that has been mixed to the 2-channel format.
gives the listener a feeling of being completely immersed by the music. Full 3-
dimensional sound creates a listening environment never before enabled for the home.
This high quality, multi-channel playback format creates new possibilities for artists and
music producers to expand their creativity.
DVD-Audio uses the same storage technology found in DVD-Video, which allows for
multiple disc configurations from 4.7GB to 17GB.
disc. MLP is a lossless compression method that allows DVD-Audio discs to also meet
the minimum of 74 minutes of high quality true 6-channel, 96kHz, 24-bit audio. MLP is
available for sample rates from 44.1kHz to 192kHz and up to 6 channels of up to 24-bit
2-channel audio. DVD-Audio increases the bitrate to 9.6Mbps. This is enough
bandwidth to reproduce 24-bit, 192kHz, 2-channel audio. If MLP is used, this is enough
bandwidth to reproduce 24-bit, 96kHz, 6-channel audio.
bitrate is variable so the disc playback capacity can be as long as 5140 minutes or more
than 85 hours when using a double-sided, double-layer disc with 44.1kHz, 16-bit, 2-
channel audio and MLP compression. If listening to 6-channel audio encoded with MLP
at 96kHz with 24-bit resolution, a single-sided, single-layer disc has the playback
capacity of between 74 and 135 minutes.
Protection for Pre-recorded Media (CPPM) encryption and Audio Watermarking.
DVD-Video features on the DVD-Audio format brings another layer of enjoyment to the
audio-visual experience. Now a listener can simultaneously enjoy high-quality audio
together with video clips or slides shows. Artists and producers are free to include
information such as linear notes (album title, song titles, lyrics, artist information, etc.)
and also Internet URLs. These multimedia features are all easily accessible via an
intuitive disc navigation menu.