High Density MD to be in Sony Playstation 64?

Electronic Gaming Monthly 2/98 (Ziff-Davis Publishing Group)

``The format of the Playstation 64 has not been finalized as of yet, although the field has been narrowed down to two well-qualified finalists. The first candidate in question is the Mini Disc HD. As one would surmise from the name, this new format is basically a high-density version of the current generation Mini Disc. Unlike the current generation Mini Disc (which boasts around 120 megabytes of rewritable storage space), the new MD HD is said to feature over 600 Megabytes of infinitely rewritable storage space. This new high-density version of the Mini Disc is a format Sony has been working on for the last few years and is targeted to be the successor to the Mini Disc. The Playstation 64 would be a prime candidate to use this format since Nintendo is also introducing a rewritable format of their own with the DD64. If used, the MD HD format would give the PS 64 the storage capacity of a CD and the rewritable features of the DD64. The second candidate is a more recent possibility: DVD-RW. Over the past year, Sony and Philips have been working on a rewritable DVD format. In contrast to Toshiba's DVD-RW format, the Sony/Philips DVD-RW is designed to be cheaper and more efficient than Toshiba's rewritable DVD, which would result in lower licensing costs to developers. Sony is hoping the DVD-RW format will be inexpensive enough to use by the time Playstation 64 is ready to roll. At this point, the main stumbling block would be (wait for it) cost. Although the final format hasn't been chosen yet, the Mini Disc HD seems to be the more logical path.''

PS64 Details

Electronic Gaming Monthly 4/98 (Ziff-Davis Publishing Group)
(Foster City, Ca) According to our sources, Sony is seriously considering using the high-density version of their Mini-Disc format for the next PlayStation. When the Q first broke the news, the format was thought to be in the running with a rewritable version of DVD, but it now seems that the Mini-Disc HD drive is not as cost-prohibitive as a rewritable DVD drive. Both Sharp and Sony will launch an audio-only version of the Mini-Disc later this year in Japan, with a U.S. rollout later this fall. The format, (which by the way, is incompatible with the original Mini-Disc) which Sony calls the "Quadruple Density MD," is very important to Sony. Not only does QD-MD feature 650 Megabytes of infinitely rewritable storage, Sony forsees this format replacing Floppy and Zip drives while costing less than a Jaz drive. How does the PlayStation successor fit into this Mini-Disc picture? Well, Sony regards the PlayStation (and its successor) as just one cog in their global corporate machine, albeit a vital one. The next PS will physically link several technologies Sony is actively involved with (Mini-Disc, video games, online gaming) into one neat, consumer-friendly box you car buy at your local Toys 'R' Us. So what (other than play video games) does Sony want us to do on their next super console? For that answer, you'll to wait for an upcoming episode of Quartermann.

[I seriously doubt the veracity of the statement that Sony and Sharp will introduce a QDMD audio format shortly. It would be a blunder to introduce an incompatible MD Audio format at this point in MD's life cycle. -Eric Woudenberg]

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