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Dolby touts new TrueHD, Digital Plus formats

Dolby touts new TrueHD, Digital Plus formats

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It's still unclear whether Blu-ray or HD-DVD has the upper hand in the battle to dominate next-generation high-def media, but the folks at Dolby are making sure the venerable audio standard wins in either event. Look for the company's two newest audio formats--TrueHD and Dolby Digital Plus--to be incorporated into all Blu-eay and HD-DVD discs and players when they finally hit the market in 2006. According to Dolby's press release, TrueHD is a follow-up to the MLP Lossless technology that's already used in DVD-Audio discs, so it should enable bit-for-bit full-resolution audio that better matches studio masters. Details on TrueHD and Dolby Digital Plus are still somewhat sketchy--while Plus is said to support more than eight channels of discrete audio, for instance, Blu-ray and HD-DVD specs cap the number of audio streams at "just" 7.1 channels. Our take? Anyone buying an A/V receiver or a home-theater system that can handle the current top surround formats from Dolby and DTS won't be missing out on anything significant--at least for the next couple of years.