Mobile DVD-A

At the recently concluded SAE-CEA Digital Car Conference in Detroit, representatives of the recording industry joined Panasonic for a DVD-Audio love-fest hailing the format as the "in-car music delivery system of the future." Panasonic's automotive electronics division used the conference and exhibition to introduce and demonstrate its first mobile DVD-Audio systems for OEM distribution. The company also hosted seminars exploring how it imagines DVD-Audio will specifically apply to and benefit the automobile industry.

Panasonic's Doug Pergament notes, "Vehicle manufacturers have powerful influence on consumer acceptance of new trends for in-vehicle entertainment. OEMs are looking for suppliers with consumer electronics and market expertise to enhance a vehicle's brand image. This was a natural alignment for Panasonic Automotive Electronics to introduce DVD-Audio at the SAE Digital Car Conference."

The company had engineer and producer Elliot Scheiner on hand to offer his comments. "The car is an important factor in the future of DVD-Audio. That's where many people will most likely hear DVD-Audio for the first time. More people listen to music in their cars than at home. And most recording formats gained momentum because of the car, for example, 8-track, cassettes, and CDs. The future of mobile DVD-Audio is through OEM equipment that is factory-installed. That way, people already have it in their new cars."

Scheiner went on to say, "I've been making music for over 30 years, and this is the first format that replicates the sound we get in the studio. Every artist I've worked with agrees that this is the way music is meant to be heard. A properly designed DVD-Audio system for the car will introduce people to a listening experience they've never had before. It's like going from black-and-white television to color."

Warner/Rhino Records' Robin Hurley took the opportunity to suggest that his company's group of labels is "totally committed" to DVD-Audio. "We agree that it's a perfect format for the automobile. DVD-Audio is the way people will listen to music in the near future. Warner Music Group has released over 50 DVD-Audio titles so far, and plans to more than double that over the next 12 months."