Panasonic’s 3D Blu-ray authoring facility now open

Panasonic kicked off the week by announcing its first 3D Blu-ray authoring facility is now fully functional, allowing content owners to work with Panasonic in creating new 3D Blu-ray Discs as early as this spring.

Specifically, content owners will be able to use the Panasonic facility for image processing, authoring and disc certification, interactive programming, and additional interactive content for 3D Blu-ray movies.

“Given Panasonic Hollywood Laboratory’s vast experience with HD image processing, we are confident that we lead the industry with MPEG-4 MVC 3D image compression technology” said Jeannine Patton, Advanced Authoring Center VP, in a statement.  “This laboratory, located as we are in the world’s entertainment capital, is proud to offer the filmmaking community the industry’s first complete, end-to-end Blu-ray 3D encoding and authoring facility.”

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The Blu-ray Disc Association applauded the Panasonic announcement in December, with other Blu-ray manufacturers expected to launch similar authoring facilities in the near future.  Panasonic is one of the leading Blu-ray supporters, and the company is now heavily promoting the 3D Blu-ray format.

Panasonic showed off 3D Blu-ray players, 3DTVs, 3D camcorders, and additional products during CES.  If promoted properly, 3D Blu-ray could become a popular consumer technology by the end of the 2010.

As part of the group’s proposal, 3D Blu-ray must have 1080p resolution — with an image for each eye — and special glasses are required so images can be properly filtered into a 3D effect.

The new Advanced Authoring Center will help other companies figure out the initial stages of 3D Blu-ray development, offering a new level of collaboration among Panasonic and its partner companies.  Panasonic was working with the community to help propel 3D Blu-ray even before the Blu-ray Disc Association finalized its 3D specifications.