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SACD Gets Universal Boost

Santa Monica, Calif. – Universal Music Group, the world’s largest music company, has lent its clout to the SACD format, announcing plans to release two-channel and multichannel discs at an unspecified time. The titles will include catalog titels and best-selling new releases, the company said.

The company has not issued an announcement about its plans for DVD-Audio, which is supported by Warner Music and several independent labels. SACD is supported by Sony Music, Virgin Music, and independents.

Previously, it was understood that the major music companies, except for Sony, were wither  not happy or familiar with all of SACD’s copy-protection capabilities.

One thing SACD lacked was the ability to watermark copies made from an SACD player’ analog outputs, not just through its digital outputs. The watermark could contain copying instructions to prevent or control copies made through authorized SACD recorders. That capability is part of the copy protection framework worked out several years ago among the major music companies and presented to the DVD Forum’s Copyright Protection Technical Working Group.