Toshiba showcase HD DVD player and recorder in India

MUMBAI: Toshiba India Private Limited announced that it showcases the world's first commercially available HD DVD player & recorder in 17th International Engineering & Technology Fair held in Pragati Maidan, New Delhi, India from 13th to 16th February. The HD DVD player, HD-XE1 for European market, and RD-A1, HD DVD recorder with hard disc for Japanese market, deliver high definition images and crystal clear sound, bringing home entertainment to a new level.

Toshiba's RD-A1 is the first video recorder to support recording and playback of content in the HD DVD format1 approved by the DVD Forum, the international association that defines and promotes DVD and HD DVD standards. This is digital hard disk video recorder integrating a recordable HD DVD in combination with a 1-terabyte (TB) 2 hard disk, which is able to record and store up to 130 hours 3 of high-definition (HD) broadcasts on its high capacity hard disk and record up to 230 minutes 3 of HD content to a single HD DVD disc. HD-XE1 and RD-A1 support playback of pre-recorded HD DVD, offering consumers stunning digital high-definition picture quality far surpassing that of standard DVD 4. Sound is also enhanced. Along with L-PCM 5.1ch audio, they support the clarity and realism of three next generation surround-sound formats, Dolby Digital Plus, Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD(Core only), and sound sources can be output to audio systems via the player's HDMI output or multi-channel analog output. Support for up-conversion of standard DVD to a resolution of 1080i or 720p through HDCP capable HDMI output allows consumers to enjoy current DVD libraries with output resolution scaled to their HDTV or HD displays.

HD-XE1 and RD-A1 also goes beyond the capabilities of standard DVD with extensive support for advanced navigation and interactive features offering new and exciting ways to interact with content. They support "pop-up menu" displays movie chapters with thumbnails while the movie plays, and allows users to navigate menu features without pausing playback. Picture in Picture (PIP) with motion video functions include the ability to play supplementary video over the main program, allowing viewers to watch bonus content, such as a superimposed director's commentary or a documentary about the making of the movie, while the movie plays*3.

Outline of HD-XE1


Toshiba commercialized the world's first DVD players in the Japanese market in November 1996, and brought its first products to the US market in March 1997. DVD has since become one of the most successful consumer products in history. Today, the global market for DVD players and recorders is huge. Worldwide cumulative sales were in the region of 370 million units*1 by the end of December 2005, and in Japan the penetration ratio of DVD players and recorders reached 49%*2 of household by the end of March 2005. The versatility of DVD has won it wide application, including PCs, automotive systems, video camcorders and games, and further market growth is expected.

Today, the CE and IT industries are poised to advance to new levels of achievement, and consumers are ready to go with them. HDTV broadcasting is moving into the mainstream and expanding its service area, and analog broadcasting is slated to be phased out in many parts of the world-in Japan by 2011. These trends are fueling fast growing demand for higher picture quality and larger data capacities.

Against this background, Toshiba has been launching HD DVD products, including players, a recorder and notebook PCs with HD HVD-ROM drives, to market to promote the early and fast penetration of the next generation DVD format, and to stimulate the penetration of content software based on HD DVD.

Key Features of the New HD DVD Player

1) Playback of high definition content and support for advanced content features Alongside playback of high-definition quality HD DVD content, the HD-XE1 supports enhanced functionality and diverse features. While those features depend on content, the player's "pop-up menu" displays menu or movie chapters while the movie plays, enabling to search desired functions or jump to a desired scene through chapter guide. The player also supports PIP with motion video functions. For example, director's and actor's commentary can be motion video super-imposed concurrently when the movie continues to play, allowing them to literally point to the material they are discussing.

2) Next generation surround-sound formats HD DVD supports next generation surround-sound formats, such as, Dolby? Digital Plus, Dolby? TrueHD and DTS-HD, and also supports L-PCM 5.1ch. Analog 5.1ch output integrated into the HD-XE1 allows consumers to enjoy surround sound simply by connecting the player to an AV amplifier with analog input.

3) Digital high definition picture output with up-converter and HDMI output Through the HDMI interface, high-definition pictures stored in a disc can be displayed digitally in HD, on digital TVs and displays that incorporate HDCP capable HDMI input. Such TVs include Toshiba's new TV REGZA Z1000 series. Through the HDMI interface, standard definition DVDs can be up-converted to an output resolution of 720p or 1080p, to complement the performance of a HDTV.

4) Compatible to playback various discs including current DVD software In addition to prerecorded DVD software, HD-XE1 supports playback of DVD-R, DVD-RW discs. It is also compatible with music CDs and playback of CDs in WMA or MP3 file format.(WMA and MP3 is only compatible in RD-A1)

1 - Source: JEITA (Japan Electronics and Information Technology Industries Association)

2 1TB is 1,000GB (Gigabyte), calculated on the basis of 1GB=1 billion bytes.

3 Recording of digital terrestrial broadcasts at approx.17Mbps in TS mode.

4 - Source: Data of penetration ratio of key consumer durables by Cabinet Office of Government of Japan (as of the end of March 2005)

5 The introduction schedule of these products to India market has not been fixed yet.

Important Notes:

Design specifications and dimensions are subject to change. Please confirm specific features and exact dimensions by reference to the product itself. Because HD DVD is a new format that makes use of new technologies, certain disc, digital connection and other performance or compatibility issues are possible. Some DVDs and CDs may not be compatible.

Some twin format discs and combination discs may not be compatible. HD DVD with high definition content required for HD output. Compatible with HD DVD-ROM disc prerecorded in HD DVD-Video format. Viewing high definition content and upconverting DVD content may require HDTV or HD display equipped with D3/D4 input, HDCP capable HDMI input, or component video input. Content can be displayed on other TVs or displays, but not in high definition.

Also, some content may not playback or playback in lower resolution on D3/D4 and component video output. A/V receiver with 5.1 analog or HDMI PCM audio capable input required for playback of advanced audio formats. Dolby? Digital Plus and Dolby True HD support for up to 5.1 channels. DTS-HD support for up to 5.1 channels of DTS core only. Updates to player firmware may be required for some interactive features, depending on content, which may also require an always-on broadband internet connection. Some features may require additional bandwidth. Some features subject to delayed availability.

About HD DVD Format

HD DVD is standardized by the DVD Forum, the international association of some 240 companies. Specifications of HD DVD-ROM physical, file and application formats were approved by the Forum in August 2005. In addition to a versatility that enables support for diverse applications, including players, recorders, PCs and automotive devices, HD DVD's main features are:

1) The same disc structure as DVD, two 0.6mm-thick polycarbonate discs bonded back-to-back. This structure makes it easy for HD DVD to achieve backward compatibility with DVD hardware devices, and also assures a simple manufacturing process for discs and hardware devices, resulting in reasonable manufacturing costs.

2) Robust playability, with no need for a disc cartridge to protect against surface blemishes and fingerprints.

3) The ability to meet capacity demands. The DVD Forum has approved HD DVD-ROM discs with a data capacity of 15GB with a single-layer disc and 30GB with a dual-layer disc (1GB = 1 billion bytes). High data capacities are achieved by adopting a shorter wavelength blue-violet laser and advanced data processing technologies, assuring the ability to store large capacity data sources, including high-definition images.

4) Adoption of advanced navigation and content features to enhance the entertainment of consumers.

5) [Adoption of AACS (Advanced Access Content System) to secure robust content protection.

6) Using twin format disc technology (single-sided dual-layer; DVD 4.7GB and HD DVD 15GB), a single disc can store both HD DVD and DVD versions of a film, allowing consumers to immediately enjoy the standard definition movie on today's DVD players and to playback the same movie in HD on an HD DVD player at a later date. A combination disc (double-sided dual-layer; DVD 8.5GB and HD DVD 30GB) is now under development.

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