DVD may have finally vanquished video, but who’d have thought it was more vulnerable to dust and spills than the dodgy tape you bought down the market for a quid.

Every piece of technology has its end. Apple tolled the death knell for the floppy disk back in 1998 when it dropped the format from its iMac. With DVD-Audio and, more significantly, digital-music downloads the end of CD altogether can’t be far off.

 border=0 /><BR></div>
</p>
<p>
DVD claimed another victim this month – Dixons high-street electronics stores are to stop selling VHS video recorders. With DVD players available for less money than a West Wing box-set, pricey VCRs are good for just one thing: recording. 
</p>
<p>
DVD recorders can now be had for under £200, so the only people sad to see the last of the brick-like format will be the makers of those fake-leather cases that make your living room resemble Agatha Christie’s library. 
</p>
<p>
Online bargain hunter Kelkoo lists 97 VCRs, but 517 DVD recorders. Global sales of DVD players already outstrip VHS players by a factor of 40 to one. Blockbuster reports that over 80 per cent of its rentals are DVDs. Tape’s stopped ticking.
</p>
<p>
At the dawn of video, VHS won its fight with Sony’s superior and smaller Betamax format. Sony lost out because it refused to license its format, allowing the more widely available VHS to gain critcal mass. Betamax was also cursed with shorter recording times from the outset. Now, history repeats itself with Blu-ray (backed by Sony, JVC and Philips) and HD-DVD (NEC and Toshiba) duking it out for the DVD crown. 
</p>
<p>
Both sides agree that high-def DVD will offer outstanding picture quality through its use of blue laser technology rather than the red lasers currently used. High-def broadcasts require more storage capacity, and these formats can store more content. 
</p>
<p>
As DVD recorders, rather than just players, become common, the ability to store more content becomes ever more important. Just ask Betamax. One high-definition DVD can hold 24 movies compared with today’s one. With DVD recording becoming the norm, we’ll see the ravages of wear and tear via case insertion and removal. 
</p>
<p>
DVD rental life is only 12-15 cycles due to scratch accumulation rendering the disks unsatisfactory. Tell that to the family that’s used the same video cassette to record EastEnders and Match of the Day for three years flat out. 
</p>
<p>
<h2>Bit of a weed</h2>
</p>
<p>
This is an area where Blu-ray wins, with its 25GB recording layer working with TDK’s new polymer scratch-proof “Armor Plated” DVD coating. With higher-capacities, the consequences of scratches in the discs’ coatings become more severe in terms of data loss as the same size scratch spoils more and more data. 
</p>
<p>
TDK claims that Armor Plating provides 100 times greater scratch resistance than standard DVD media. The coating has a very hard surface that makes it more resistant to contamination by dirt, fluids and fingerprints, as well as impacts from hard and sharp objects. With the disc’s recording layer so protected, it will be much less likely to exhibit write/read errors, jitter and playback dropouts. The coating also repels dust because it is anti-static. 
</p>
<p>
While vulnerable out of its clunky box, video was strangely robust. DVD, which looks a lot tougher, is a bit of a weed when it comes to the rough and tumble of life in the lounge. 
</p>
<p>
The fight for the recording crown is gonna get dirty.
</p>
<p>
</div>
</section>
</section>
<footer>
<style>
</style>
<div class="shareLinks">
<p>Share this</p>
<div class="socialIcon facebook">
<div data-gd-plugin="facebook-public-share"></div>
</div>
<div class="socialIcon twitter">
<div data-gd-plugin="twitter-public-share" data-gd-tw-text="DVD