Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Definition of a Disc

With the increased output of so much digital media – terminology and technical lingo has grown by leaps and bounds.

How do you figure out exactly which disc you need for what? How do you make sense of it all?

Let’s get back to the basics… check out these definitions to some of the common terms and acronyms seen today for the most common types of media storage.


Compact Disc. Optical storage device, capable of storing around 600-700MB of data. Great for storing data files, music, and photos.


(Digital Video Disc or Digital Versatile Disc). An optical disc format which provides sufficient storage space and access speeds to playback entire movies. Great for storing LOTS of data files, music and photos also!


A high-definition DVD format supported by a group of manufacturers led by the popular company... Toshiba. (Mainly for movies)

HD (not a type of storage medium, but a common abbreviation these days!)

High Definition. Usually used to describe any device capable of generating or displaying a signal with a resolution of at least 720 vertical lines. Another accepted definition is any signal containing at least one million pixels of video data in a single frame (vertical resolution x horizontal resolution).


A high-definition DVD format supported by a group of manufacturers led by Sony. Typically holds 25-50 GB of information.

Flash Drive

A device used to store data that can withstand more abuse than a hard drive, ranging in capacities from 32MB to 16GB. Also commonly referred to as a Thumb Drive, Key Drive, or Jump Drive.

Memory Stick

Digital data storage technology with up to 10 times the storage capacity of an (old school!) 3.5 diskette. Sony claims rights to this term and is promoting the Memory Stick as the new way to share and transfer pictures, sound, and other data between different compact electronic devices like digital cameras and camcorders.

All definitions courtesy of the following online resources:

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