1982, the Red Book is the basic standard for all CDs today. It is also available as ISO/IEC 60908 standard. The Red Book describes the physical properties and the digital audio encoding. It specifies 44.1 kHz sample rate, quantization of 16-bit PCM (Pulse Code Modulation). The standard includes also: disc specification, physical parameters, optical stylus and parameters, deviations and block error rate, modulation system and error correction.
1984, the Yellow Book is the standard that defines the format of CD-ROMs. It is the first extension of the Red Book. At its lowest level, Yellow Book specification for CD-ROM is nearly identical to the Red Book standard.
The Yellow Book defines also two data structures: Mode 1 and Mode 2. The mode byte in the header field of a sector describes the type of data contained in the data field.
1990, standard for recordable CDs. The Orange Book defines recordable discs with multisession capability that could be recorded by the customer.
1990 Part I: CD-MO (Magneto-Optical), 1998 part II: CD-R (Compact Disc Recordable), 1998 part III: CD-RW (Compact Disc Rewritable)