A blu-ray disc player is a “optical disc” information storage device, similar to Compact Discs and DVDs, except with better performance and more storage capacity. The CD is considered a first-generation optical disc, the DVD is a second-generation optical disc and a blu-ray disc is considered a third-generation optical disc.
A blue-ray disc is called optical discs because information is stored on the tiny ridges of a disc and is accessed with a blue laser beam. “Blu-ray” specifically refers to the blue laser “ray” that is aimed at the blue-ray disc from the blu-ray player. The blue-ray player has a laser diode.
Why is Blu-Ray Better Than A DVD?
So you might be asking yourself, “What is a blu-ray disc player and why is blue-ray better than a DVD?” Blu-ray discs store more information than DVDs or CDs, because the information is stored closer to the edge of the optical disc. Blu-ray lasers use a shorter wavelength than the standard red or infrared lasers used for DVDs. A shorter wavelength means a more intense beam, and therefore it can be pinpointed more, which allows more surface space to store more information.
The more data stored on a bluray disc allows for longer movies and more special features per disc. More importantly, having more data means better performance for the disc and the player playing the disc. So blu-ray players allow better picture quality and better sound quality. To get the full effect of a high definition television, you need the better performance specs of a blue-ray player. The picture is going to be higher definition. Bringing up the topic of “high definition” brings us to the next question you’re probably asking.
Blue-Ray vs High Definition (HD)
When comparing blue-ray vs high definition (HD) there’s not much evidence that blu-ray is better. Blu-ray disc players had a better marketing and distribution strategy than their high-def competitors. So when the two high-definition optical storage discs went up against one another, blu-ray had a few marketing advantages over its high-definition rival.