Warner Brothers music is attempting to create a disc capable of storing standard compact-disc formats, as well as emerging DVD formats, according to a patent researchers filed.

The filling describes a multi-layer disk with a layer for the standard CD format consumers are accustomed to, as well as layers holding the up-coming HD-DVD and Blu-Ray formats.

A data disc consists of several layers, including at least one layer conforming to a first format, and a second layer conforming to a second format, the patent stated. The formats can include CD, DVD, HD and BD formats and the layers may be physical, logic or application layers.

Sony's Blu-Ray and Toshiba's HD-DVD formats are vying to capture the next generation of compact media, promising high capacity discs capable of storing high-definition content. The two technologies, however, are incompatible with each other.

Both Blu-ray and HD DVD use blue lasers to read data from the media, however, the data layer of the Blu-ray discs is 0.1mm from surface while HD-DVD data resides 0.6mm deep. Warner researchers hope to overcome this by using special mirrors to allow the lenses to focus on each as necessary.

However, despite the technological advances, the company may run into licensing problems.

Backers of BluRay and HD-DVD are so competitive that they may not allow licensing for a universal player, experts contend.

Having the technology is one thing, Ted Schalder said, principal analyst at Forrester Research, but being able to sell it with licenses is a completely different thing,