IFA 2007: Two HD-DVD players from Toshiba for Under € 400

Toshiba’s HD-EP30 HD-DVD-Player

Toshiba is trying to give customers an incentive to buy a HD-video player despite the ongoing conflict between the competing HD-video formats Blu-ray and HD-DVD. However, unlike Samsung’s approach, Toshiba is not trying to win customers over with dual-format functionality but with a low price. The company’s third generation of HD-DVD players is expected to arrive in Europe in October in the shape of the HD-EP30 and HD-EP35. Among the highlights of these new models are a maximum resolution of 1080p and playback with 24 non-interlaced images a second (24p playback).

Since movies are traditionally filmed at 24 frames per second, the conversion to 50 or 60 Hertz during playback often causes stuttering or uneven playback. Thanks to the support 24p playback, Toshiba hopes to make stuttering playback a thing of the past.

Both players will include a REGZA link, a control signal that is transmitted via HDMI. This link is meant to enable users to control several devices with a single remote control. The HD-EP35 supports analog 5.1-channel audio signals as well as digital signals (up to 7.1 channels) at higher bitrates via HDMI. The HD-EP30 supports the audio formats Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby True HD and DTS HD. The two players are also downward compatible with DVD players, allowing playback of DVD material at its native resolution.

According to Toshiba, the HD-EP30 will cost somewhere between € 349 and € 399, while the HD-EP35 will carry a price tag in the range of € 449 and € 499. For reference: Samsung’s dual format player BD-UP5000 for Blu-ray and HD-DVD will set you back around €1,000.

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