CBHD, née CH-DVD -- the Chinese version of the now-deceased HD DVD format -- is in production, gearing up for a fourth quarter launch. DigiTimes cites reports from enorth.com.cn that Shanghai United Optical Disc has laid out the first production line, although Taiwanese disc makers (already burned by HD DVD) aren't as confident it can take on Blu-ray, even with considerably lower royalty fees and hardware costs for disc replicators. Coming alongside news that Chinese-built Blu-ray players based on increasingly affordable hardware is on the way, plus a decided lack of studio support, it's not hard to see how this one will turn out (again.) Not to underrate China's national pride, but unless it can gain an unexpected foothold among DVD pirates, CBHD will probably be on the high definition scrap heap alongside HD DVD, EVD and the rest before long.

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China's Blu-ray competitor CBHD brings HD DVD back from the dead