Zoran Announces Next-Generation DVD

Providing another boost to the nascent DVD-Audio market, Zoran Corporation, a provider of integrated circuits (ICs) and software for digital video and audio applications, announced last week the availability of a new DVD decoder IC chip, the Vaddis IV. Zoran says the chip is optimized for fourth-generation DVD players and will include integrated DVD-Audio decoding. According to the company, the new Vaddis IV decoder enables the design of flexible and advanced---yet affordable---new DVD players.

The DVD-Video market is expanding rapidly, as players become more affordable and DVD titles are released at an accelerating rate. DVD-Audio proponents argue that once DVD-Audio decoding is built into the majority of DVD players intended for both the home theater and high-end audio markets, the higher-resolution audio formats will have an easier time finding software buyers.

Along with standard DVD-Video and DVD-Audio decoding, the new chip will also decode the DTS, HDCD, and MP3 audio formats. Dr. Shmuel Farkash, vice president of video products at Zoran Corp., says that "Vaddis IV delivers the necessary integration and features to drive the DVD market into the next millennium."