Matsushita Electric Industrial Co. said Wednesday it will launch the world’s first Blu-ray DVD recorders in Japan on Nov. 15, rising to do battle with High-Definition DVD, a rival format.

Both are vying to become the standard for next-generation DVDs, touting higher-quality graphics that stand out especially on larger TVs.

The DMR-BW 200 will retail for about 300,000 yen and the DMR-BR 100 for roughly 240,000 yen, the company said.

“We’re proud of our products and we hope to end the battle soon, with the Blu-ray becoming the standard,” said Shigenobu Hirahara, associate director of corporate marketing for the Panasonic brand.

“In the five years ahead, things will change rapidly as more people will see such high-quality contents as ‘hi-vision’ broadcasting with large-screen flat panel TVs,” Hirahara said during the preview.

The machines record high-definition images to their internal hard-disk drives and can dub them to Blu-ray discs without compromising quality, Hirahara said. Both machines also play the next-generation discs, although they are incompatible with HD-DVD machines.

The Blu-ray format is also backed by Sony Corp., Samsung Electronics Co. and other firms, while HD-DVD is championed by a consortium including Toshiba Corp., NEC Corp., Sanyo Electric Co.

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