Support for widescreen movies on standard or widescreen TVs (4:3 and 16:9 aspect ratios).

Over 2 hours of high-quality digital video (a double-sided, dual-layer disc can hold about 8 hours of high-quality video, or 30 hours of VHS quality video).

Up to 8 tracks of digital audio (for multiple languages, commentaries, etc.), each with as many as 8 channels.

Up to 32 subtitle/karaoke tracks.

Up to 9 camera angles (different viewpoints can be selected during playback).

On-screen menus and simple interactive features (for games, quizzes, etc.)

Multilingual identifying text for title name, album name, song name, cast, crew, etc.

Instant rewind and fast forward (no "be kind, rewind" stickers and threats on rental discs).

Instant search to title, chapter, music track, and timecode.

Durable (no wear from playing, only from physical damage).

Not susceptible to magnetic fields. Resistant to heat.

Compact size (easy to handle, store, and ship; players can be portable; replication is cheaper than tapes or laserdiscs).


Automatic seamless branching of video (for multiple story lines or ratings on one disc).

Note: Most discs do not contain all features (multiple audio/subtitle tracks, seamless branching, parental control, etc.), as each feature must be specially authored. Some discs may not allow searching or skipping.

Most players support a standard set of features:

Language choice (for automatic selection of video scenes, audio tracks, subtitle tracks, and menus).

Special effects playback: freeze, step, slow, fast, and scan.

Parental lock (for denying playback of discs or scenes with objectionable material).

Programmability (playback of selected sections in a desired sequence).

Random play and repeat play.

Digital audio output (PCM stereo and Dolby Digital).

Recognition and output of DTS Digital Surround audio tracks.

Playback of audio CDs.

Must be supported by additional content on the disc.


Some players include additional features:

Playback of Video CDs or Super Video CDs.

Playback of MP3 CDs.

Playback of MP3 DVDs.

Playback of video files in other formats such as DivX and MPEG-4.

Playback of Picture CDs and Photo CDs.

Playback of laserdiscs and CDVs.

Component video output (YUV or RGB) for higher quality picture.

Progressive-scan component output (YUV or RGB) for highest quality analog picture.

Digital video output (SDI, 1394, or DVI/HDMI) for perfect digital picture.

Six-channel analog output from internal audio decoder (Dolby Digital, DTS, or MLP).

Reverse single frame stepping.

Reverse play (normal speed.

RF output (for TVs with no direct video input).

Multilingual on-screen display.

Multiple disc capacity.

Digital zoom (2x or 4x enlargement of a section of the picture). This is a player feature, not a DVD disc feature.