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Smaller firms jump on full-system wagon

Title: Smaller firms jump on full-system wagon
Date: Monday, 13 September 2004
Publisher: Plastics News
Author: Roger Renstrom
Main source:

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In the media business, small- and medium-size processors are changing with the times.

Requirements of these smaller firms differ from those of major optical-media players such as Technicolor, Cinram, Ritek, Sonopress and Sony. Suppliers see a trend for the smaller firms to invest in faster systems for disc replication and, in some cases, a transition away from tape duplication.

Some have selected Toyo, Netstal or Sumitomo machines for the molding aspect of an advanced optical-media manufacturing line.

Production system supplier M2 Engineering AB also has followed the trend. Recognizing that smaller firms might not have significant research muscle, M2 has pitched its capability to provide complete systems for digital-versatile-disc and compact-disc makers, said Stefan Stockhaus, president and chief executive officer of Stockholm, Sweden-based M2.

For installed optical-media lines within North America, M2 ranks behind Singulus Technologies AG of Kahl am Main, Germany.

Toyo Machinery & Metal Co. Ltd. officials have noticed the trend.

"We are starting to see more small replicators getting into the business, said Paul Hebert, a Portland, Maine-based sales representative with Toyo. "Maybe they were duplicators. They are switching over.

Toyo finds more companies transitioning directly to DVD-5 or -9 equipment rather than starting with CD lines. "In the earlier days, people might adopt a CD machine just for CD or CD-ROM, Hebert said. "Now, they are adopting directly to DVD-9.


Golden Era Productions brought DVD-5 replication in-house and recently set up a second line for optical media manufacturing, said Bert Trussell, technical supervisor. Golden Era, the audio-visual division of the Hollywood, Calif.-based Church of Scientology International, operates a film studio and produces television commercials, short films and lecture presentations in various media formats, often with versions in 15 languages.

Within its M2 SQ1 and SQ1-D systems, Golden Era molds with a 60-ton Netstal Discjet for audio CDs on the first line and a 60-ton Netstal Discjet II hybrid for both CDs and the new DVD-5 work on the other.

The organization began producing audiocassettes in the early 1980s and audio CDs in the early 1990s and, for now, continues to outsource replication of DVD-9s.