Laser disk

The laser disk (LD), also laser vision disk or CD video mentioned, is a CD-similar storage medium for videos in the Heimgebrauch. Own recordings are also possible, are however very expensive and the quality are everything but well. Due to their high quality becomeLDs also used in the professional range. The scanning takes place contactlessly via a laser. Contrary to tapes, records, video tape recordings and other videodiscs - there are techniques therefore no wear. Today they are in the home range of the DVDs particularly in Europealmost displaces.
Das Laserdisc-Logo
The Laserdisc Logo

table of contents

history of the laser disk

the first laser disk system comes from MCA and 1971 was built, 1972 demonstrated and 1978 then to the market introduced. It called itself DiscoVision.

Became parallel by Philips, originally underthe name laser vision (LV), a system develops and publishes, which was offered in Germany as videodisc. The LV had a similar picture and sound recording. The format achieved a far spreading in the USA due to its high quality,floppte however in Europe. The LD was the first medium, which contained exclusive special editions with extras such as audio comments, Trailer and background reports. Often the film producers for the LD editions were asked or made new transfers. This basis established thoseIndustry, which today the DVD help to your success.
Eine Laserdisc (Doktor Schiwago)
A laser disk (doctor Schiwago)
Ein Laserdiscplayer mit einge- legter LD (Pioneer CLD-D925)
a Laserdiscplayer with einge legter LD (Pioneer CLD-D925)
a 12-cm laser disk concerning. CD video (CD size)

on the basis of the LV developed Philips the CD,by a smaller diameter, thinner media, the renouncement of picture information and the transition for digital coding of the clay/tone was characterised.

Pioneer developed the LV further to the LD. NTSC - LDs have both similar and digital clay-pure. Therefore can both LVs and LDs both with LV and with LD-players to be played.PAL - LDs contain either similar or digital tonus formation, however not both.


against the wide-spread opinion is the video picture on LDs inon two conditions reduced analog format. It is not thus present in a completely digitally represented format as with VCDs or DVDs. With the mast ring of the LD the similar video picture is modulated and at zero crossovers of the signal alternating as “recess”and “non--recess” pressed. In a LD-player a PLL follows - Synthesizer these recesses and regenerates in addition the original signal. Error recognition and - are not possible for correction.

Even if the theoretically possible image definition and dissolution are smaller than with DVDs (by restrictions of the PAL - and/or. NTSC - Color system) the picture is free from DVD typical artifacts, also in strongly moved scenes, which explains as excellently judged image quality.

LDs gives it in the 3 sizes to 30 cm (LP), 20 cm (EP) and 12 cm(with these the hardware is identical to CD). The two large formats can be reciprocally taped.

The recording takes place in the CLV or CAV format. CAV (Constant Angular Velocity) permits slow motion and fixed image in optimal quality, the play time is however up30 min (NTSC) or 36 min (PAL) limits. CLV (Constant linear Velocity/or also Extended Play called) permits 60 to min (NTSC) or 64 min (PAL). All these data refer to a side of the disk.

The 12-cm-Version becomes frequentlyas CD video designation and does not have to do anything with the DVD forerunner video CD. 6 min picture and clay/tone and further 20 min can be noted only to clay/tone. An additional only clay/tone portion can be shown by each CD - player. The regularVideospur is however completely incompatible to CD or DVD formats and cannot not be read by appropriate drive assemblies.

audio procedure on the laser disk

the format permits the use of DTS and Dolby to digital (also as AC-3 designates). The data ratefrom DTS thereby also a new help-guessed/advised DTS is of 768 kbit/s was introduced, in order to use less place on fillingguessed/advised DTS fixed (1536 kbit/s) during with the standardisation of the DVD. With Dolby digital is smaller the maximum bit rate thanon DVDs (384 kbit/s to 448 kbit/s). A Dolby digitally clay-purely is only on laser disks possible those the NTSC - correspond to television standard. For this the Dolby digital coded clay/tone similar into the RF-signal on the NTSC laser disks up-modulated. Around thatSignal will convert entrance at the amplifier into a standard digital signal needed for the decoding a AC3-RF. Were there these entrances only into the very expensive Top Class devices built gave it special AC3-RF-Demodulatoren to buy, this transformation settled. For this that becameAC3-RF-Ausgang of the Laserdiscplayers attached at the RF-entrance of the demodulator. The demodulator was attached again by Multichinch or a digital cable ( coaxial or Toslink) to the amplifier. Well-known manufacturers of these devices were Yamaha as well as Pioneer. Partly there was also externalDolbyDigital decoder (like e.g. the Yamaha DDP-1 or DDP-2) with inserted RF-signal-transducer. These devices with (for times at that time) by far better AC3 decoders also used if the decoder was qualitatively inferior or directly only Dolby Surround built in the amplifier was present.

Briefly there were attempts laser disks with Dolby to introduce also digitally clay/tone to Germany. For this NTSC laser disks with German clay/tone were pressed. There many Player of the time at that time both PAL and NTSC to spend could became this technically only possible. Interspersedthe format has itself however non in Germany straight once two laser disks with AC3 clay/tone appeared (True read & The Long Kiss Goodnight).

There were attempts in Germany also with the DTS - clay/tone procedures: The Pal+ laser disk Schlafes brotherwhite apart from a anamorphen picture signal also a DTS - clay pure up.

the cult around the laser disk

the laser disk became (as it still one manufactured) predominantly from High ending - Usern uses. This had different reasons: For Highend user was thosethe video home system cartridge superior image quality as well as the excellent clay/tone purchase reason. Film fans were pleased in addition about the excellent import - laser disks, offered them nevertheless many films, which were to be bought so in Germany very heavy or not at all. Thus it comes also thatmost laser disk fans a very high portion to English-language NTSC - laser disks in their collection have. Also Japanese laser disks (usually also firmly burned English sub-titles) were gladly imported. In addition, laser disks were always very expensive (partly to over 150 DM)and sat down due to its (and also because of the guideline of the inventor Pioneer, the hard core - Pornografie on the laser disk forbade creating around „a clean “medium) never really through. In Germany above all the companies carried Laserparadise and Astro for the spreading of the medium. Both companies pressed predominantly horror - and Splatter - films on the medium, like e.g. Dawn OF the DEAD or also dance the devil. Partially it in addition, genuine Blockbuster gave like thatwith Oscars over-accumulated up film the English patient.

Since the laser disk was never mass medium, there were it also predominantly only in the large metropolises such as Frankfurt, Munich, to buy Hamburg or Berlin in the specialized divisions of the electrical markets. Mainly the fewengaged dispatch dealers like e.g. „“The laser disks offered and provided Frankfurt to laser disks also supraregional thus for a larger spreading of the laser disk.

The laser disk differed from the video home system cartridge apart from the clay/tone and the image quality particularly in punkto auxiliary material: UpLaser disk gave it detailed bonus material such as Making ofs, to interviews, audio comments, been void scenes and often also small magazines or other Gimmicks. Fans speak of an affectionately arranged medium with charm. Because of the fact is it probably that itself stillcollect many old (and also new) fans around the laser disk crowds, the laser disk further or complete their collection. In such a manner complex arranged laser disks were mostly published as box in a special collecting tank version, which was however also exorbitantly expensive. Decisive is safealso the sympathy factor: The qualitatively high-quality and its time far superior laser disk finally of „approve of “DVD too „wrongly “displaced and so among fans still more to the sympathy carrier. When the last German laser disk was pressed 1999, were manyCompanies already transferred to the rising DVD. Not to forget it is also that the laser disk only for some time became accessible by the substantial price purge the normal consumer and itself so many to the interest at that time in the LDremind.

In the last years the company Pioneer brought some Player singular by their LD-/VCD-/CD-/DVD-compatibility to the laser disk on the market. Were the only Player, which could play DVDs and laser disks. The newest and last Model in Germany manufacturedbecame, was the Pioneer DVL-919E. The price was at that time with approximately 2800 DM.

quality compared with video home system and DVD

  • dissolution
    • video home system: limited by (quite small) a range with 320x240i pixel
    • DVD: limited by standardized pixel numbers, orientsat the TV-standard with 720x576p pixel
    • LD: limited by the used TV-format PAL or NTSC and its range, close Studioqualität with 640x480p pixel
  • picture fig.
    • video home system: increasingly by wear, drop Outs, Farbflirren with full blue or red tones
    • DVD: Artifacts
    • LD: Large surface flickering
  • clay/tone
    • video home system:Similar, mono (longitudinal trace) and/or. HiFi Stereo (on the diagonal trace)
    • DVD: Digitally, PCM or datareduces, 1 - 7 channels, several clay-pure
    • LD: Digitally, PCM, 2 - 4 channels, alternatively: Multi-channel clay/tone

the CD video EP is the smaller variant of the laser diskwith a diameter of well 20 centimeters (8 tariff) and altogether one hour of storage capacity.

In Japan starting from 1992 a rear vision LD (or also HD-LD/MUSE LD) was offered. This had a still more better in relation to image quality the normal LD, sethowever through and 1997 did not take themselves again by the market. The films are until like normal laser disks, particularly the Player were today still twice as expensive and are still extremely expensive.

Became those admits to a broad publicLaser disk by their employment in the play halls - plays Dragon's Lair and space Ace.

The last German laser disk was manufactured 1999, which is called titles “the return of the Zombies” and became in October 1999 published.

The world-wide last laser disk became 2001in Japan manufactured, the title is called “Tokyo Raiders” and became to 21. September 2001 publishes.

some larger films, those in Germany appeared on laser disk

see also: VCD, SVCD, DVD, videodisc, optical memory

Web on the left of

  • - unofficial Website the laser disk with comprehensive information toLaser disk.
  • - forum with outstanding knowledge archives to the individual publications
  • a listing nearly all LD-Player with technical data, Bedienungsanleitungungen and photographies -
  • data base with nearly 40,000 data records to different LD-publications, with profile he function, per
  • produced

  > German to English > (Machine translated into English)