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Hi-MD: the new format and media from Sony

Sony developed a new format, Hi-MD, positioned as a universal format for music recording. According to the press release, it can also be used to store various data and is supported by existing MD solutions.




The key specs of new media are:

  • High capacity — you can alsmost double the capacity of your MDs by formatting them in the Hi-MD format. By the way, the company also unveiled 1GB Hi-MD media providing storage for up to 45 hours of music due to the DWDD (Domain Wall Displacement Detection)
  • High sound quality — Hi-MD utilizes ATRAC3plus compression technology
  • Universal media — Hi-MD features standard PÑ-compliant file systems
  • Copyright system — Hi-MD utilizes OpenMG and MagicGate technologies; Hi-MD sound files store encrypted source information

Key media specs:


More light on this is shed at the forum of MiniDisc Station with links to devices that would support the new media. In order:

Sony MZ-NH1 — portable Hi-MD recorder, $400:

  • Magnesium alloy body
  • Remote control with 3-line display
  • USB connector / cradle-charger
  • Records 1GB Hi-MD and 300MB MD
  • Recorded sound download to PC
  • Recognized as FAT USB storage
  • PCM/ATRAC3plus @ 132, 105, 66, 64, 48 Kbps
  • Connectors:
    • Line/Mic, optical input
    • USB interface
    • Headphones output

Sony MZ-NH600D downloader, $200:

  • Records 1GB Hi-MD and 300MB MD
  • Recorded sound download to PC
  • Recognized as FAT USB storage
  • PCM/ATRAC3plus @ 132, 105, 66, 64, 48 Kbps
  • Connectors:
    • Line/Mic, optical input
    • Headphones output

Sony MZ-NH900 recorder, $300:

  • Records 1GB Hi-MD and 300MB MD
  • Recorded sound download to PC
  • Recognized as FAT USB storage
  • PCM/ATRAC3plus @ 132, 105, 66, 64, 48 Kbps
  • Remote control with display
  • Charger
  • USB, headphones connectors

Sony MZ-NHF800 Hi-MD/AM/FM recorder, $250:

  • Records 1GB Hi-MD and 300MB MD
  • Recorded sound download to PC
  • Recognized as FAT USB storage
  • PCM/ATRAC3plus @ 132, 105, 66, 64, 48 Kbps
  • AM/FM/TV tuner
  • Connectors:
    • Line/Mic, optical input
    • USB interface
    • Headphones output

All devices are supplied with SonicStage 2.0 and SimpleBurner software

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