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Panasonic Newsroom TOPPress ReleasePanasonic and Sony Jointly Developed New HD Digital Video Camera Recorder Format for Recording on Disc

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Headquarters News

May 11, 2006

Panasonic (Matsushita Electric)
Sony Corporation

Panasonic and Sony Jointly Developed New HD Digital Video Camera Recorder Format for Recording on Disc
-- Basic Specifications Announced Today --

Tokyo, Japan, May 11, 2006 - Panasonic, the brand name for which Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd. is known, and Sony Corporation today announced specifications for "AVCHD," a brand new high definition (HD) digital video camera recorder format the two companies jointly established. The AVCHD format allows for recording and playback high-resolution, digital HD images using 8cm DVD media.

The two companies have started preparations for licensing to extensively promote the format throughout the industry.

- Logo Mark of "AVCHD" format -

In Japan, BS digital HD broadcasting and digital terrestrial broadcasting are expanding widely. Coupled with the emerging growth of HD broadcasting across the world, penetration of HD-capable TV sets is gaining unprecedented momentum. This sets the stage for enjoying HD images more easily at home. Panasonic and Sony will extensively promote this format throughout the industry as the new HD digital video camera recorder format best suited for the HD era.

The "AVCHD" is an HD digital video camera format for recording 1080i*1 and 720p*2 signals onto 8cm DVD media by using highly efficient codec technologies. The format employs MPEG-4 AVC/H.264 codec for video compression, and Dolby Digital (AC-3) or Linear PCM for audio codec. This makes it possible to develop HD video camera recorders which achieve compact size as well as high-quality video and audio.

The MPEG-4/H.264 codec is a promising technology which is over two times more efficient than MPEG-2 or MPEG-4 codec technologies. By adopting this technology, an "AVCHD" video camera recorder can record high quality HD video images onto 8cm DVD media.

*1 :1080i   one of HD specifications that has 1080 efficient scanning lines by interlace method
*2 :720p   one of HD specifications that has 720 efficient scanning lines by progressive method

[Outlines of "AVCHD" Format]
  Recording Media
8cm DVD
  Wave Length of LASER
VIDEO   Video Signal   1080/60i
  480/60i   576/50i
  Number of Pixels
  (Horizontal × Vertical)
  1920 × 1080
  1440 × 1080
  1280 × 720   720 × 480   720 × 576
  Aspect Ratio   16:9   16:9   4:3, 16:9   4:3, 16:9
  Compression Method
MPEG-4 AVC/H.264
  Sampling Frequency
  for Luminance Signal
  74.25MHz   13.5MHz   13.5MHz
  Sampling Format
  Quantization Bit Rate
8bits (Luminance / Chrominance)
AUDIO   Compression Method Dolby Digital (AC-3) Linear PCM
  Bit Rate
  after Compression
64 - 640 kbps 1.5Mbps (2 channels)
  Audio Mode 1 - 5.1 channel 1 - 7.1 channel
MPEG-2 Transport Stream
  System Bit Rate
up to 18Mbps

About Panasonic
Best known by its Panasonic brand name, Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd. is a worldwide leader in the development and manufacture of electronic products for a wide range of consumer, business, and industrial needs. Based in Osaka, Japan, the company recorded consolidated net sales of US$76.02 billion for the year ended March 31, 2006. The company's shares are listed on the Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya, New York (NYSE:MC), Euronext Amsterdam and Frankfurt stock exchanges. For more information on the company and the Panasonic brand, visit the company's website at

About Sony Corporation
Sony Corporation is a leading manufacturer of audio, video, game, communications, key device and information technology products for the consumer and professional markets. With its music, pictures, computer entertainment and on-line businesses, Sony is uniquely positioned to be the leading personal broadband entertainment company in the world. Sony recorded consolidated annual sales of approximately $64 billion for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2006. Sony Global Web Site:

Press Contact


Matsushita Electric
Panasonic News Bureau

Akira Kadota Tel : +81-3-3578-1237
Tel :+81-3-3542-6205

Panasonic Corporation of North America

Jim Reilly Tel :+1-201-392-6067

Panasonic Europe Ltd.

Brendon Gore Tel : +44-(0)208-899-2217
  Asia & Oceania    
  Panasonic Asia Pacific Pte. Ltd. Josh Matsukawa Tel :+65-6390-8470
    Alicia Ho Tel :+65- 6390-3513
Sony Corporation
  Corporate Communications   Tel : +81-3-5448-2200

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