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Multi-format DVD writer arrives

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Hitachi-LG Data Storage (HLDS) has developed a multiple format drive that is able to write in both DVD-RAM and DVD-RW formats, as well as DVD-R and CD-RW.

HLDS is a joint venture between LG Electronics and
Hitachi. Its combo drive, expected to hit the market in January, should be a boon for consumers mired in confusion over a range of DVD formats that are not all fully compatible.

The notable format exception in this product is DVD+RW, although most DVD+RW drives can typically read DVD-RW or DVD-R formats, as can most set-top players.

HLDS has not yet announced pricing on the product (the GMA-4120B), although it claims the drive will be cheaper than existing DVD writing products. HP currently sells its DVD+RW/CD-RW combo drive for $599.

Simply put, users will be able to use a single drive to write in a variety of formats, allowing nearly any other drive or player on the market to read its discs, something not readily available to them right now.

HLDS develops optical disc drive products for both desktop PCs and notebooks. It supplies a variety of companies, including Compaq, IBM, Dell and, interestingly, HP. ®

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