Panasonic Communications Co Ltd started shipping samples of the Blu-ray Disc (BD) drive measuring 9.5mm in thickness, which the company claims is the thinnest in the world.
The BD drive is intended for use in notebook computers.
The company's existing product, released in May 2006, has a thickness of 12.7mm. By reducing the profiles of the spherical aberration compensation mechanism and the lens actuator, as well as the sizes of other optical parts, the company reduced the thickness of the new product to approximately 3/4 of that of the existing product. The dimensions of the new disc drive are 9.5 x 128 x 127mm.
The new drive features double-speed reading and writing for single-layer BD-R/BD-RE discs and single-speed writing and double-speed reading for dual-layer discs. According to the company, the product is also capable of reading and writing on organic pigment-type BD-R discs to be released in the future.
In addition, it supports reading and writing on CD and DVD media, namely DVD-RAM, DVD-R, DVD-RW, DVD+R, DVD+RW, CD-R and CD-RW.
The company is showcasing the latest product at 2008 International CES, which runs from Jan 7, 2008, in Las Vegas.