Should I Buy a Blue Ray Player?

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wow, what an argument.

I might not even get a 32" i might get bigger. Depends on how nice my dad wants to be. We'll see. As for the PS3, chances are I'll get that because I wanted to get the console anyways.

If I were you, get a 40'' 1080p, if you go lowere you'll only be wanting more.

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Just been reading engadgetHD, seems that the XDE stuff really isn't worth it.

Toshiba stubbornly launches the un-Blu-ray, XD-E500 DVD player

Oh Toshiba, has it really come to this? After a humiliating loss to Blu-ray, Tosh just unveiled its new $150 XD-E500 DVD player. It's no run o' the mill DVD player mind you, this unit touts Toshiba's new eXtended Detail Enhancement (XDE) technology -- that super-duper resolution upconverting tech meant to fill the void between ubiquitous upconverting players and Blu-ray. Unfortunately, the player demonstrated offered just "subtle but noticeable sharpening of the image" when compared side-by-side (in a controlled demonstration) with an unnamed $70 upscaler -- to its credit, Tosh did not try to compare its new player with an HD-capable Blu-ray machine. Still, more than twice the price for "subtle" hardly sounds like a compelling purchase to us.

Update: Official press release is now out which, oddly enough, helped us upconvert our 480i/p cynicism to full-blown 1080p/24fps skepticism.

NEW YORK - After losing out in the battle to define the high-definition successor of the DVD, Toshiba Corp. has turned its attention to the next best thing: the DVD.


On Monday, the Japanese electronics company is releasing a new DVD player that it says does more than previous models to improve the look of DVDs on high-definition TVs.

The XD-E500 will sell for a suggested price of $149.99, twice as much as regular "upconverting" players, which also improve the look of a DVD, but it is less than half the price of a Blu-ray player.

The Blu-ray disc, championed by Sony Corp., early this year beat out Toshiba's HD DVD to become the dominant format for high-definition discs. Toshiba has stopped making HD DVD players.

In a demonstration to reporters last week, Toshiba played the same disc in an XDE player and a standard, $70 upscaling model on side-by-side LCD HDTVs. The new player produced a subtle but noticeable sharpening of the image.

Toshiba didn't demonstrate the XDE against a Blu-ray or HD DVD player, and Louis Masses, director of product planning for the audio and video group at Toshiba America Consumer Products, was careful to stress that it's not meant to compete with or replace Blu-ray.

"If you want Blu-ray, go get Blu-ray. This product is meant to improve playback of DVDs," Masses said.

Masses said the XDE technology, for eXtended Detail Enhancement, will be used in other players, and the brand will be promoted extensively in advertising, including on NBC's Olympics site.

Blu-ray players have six times the image detail of a DVD, and upscaling players, even those using XDE technology, can't overcome that. But they can sharpen edges to overcome the blurriness of a DVD when displayed on a large screen.

Three years after their launch, Blu-ray players are popular with home-theater aficionados but have not caught on in the mainstream, except through Sony's PlayStation 3 game console, which can play Blu-ray discs.

In emphasizing DVDs, Toshiba is playing up to a difficulty for Blu-ray marketers: Most U.S. consumers are happy with DVDs, according to a recent study by ABI Research, and don't believe Blu-ray provides as big of a quality jump as DVDs did over VHS tapes.

Toshiba Press Release

Toshiba 'Breathes New Life' Into DVD with XDE Technology

XDE offers enhanced picture performance from standard DVDs

WAYNE, N.J., Aug. 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Toshiba America Consumer Products,

L.L.C. ("Toshiba") today announces its new video enhancement technology for

DVD with the introduction of the XD-E500. XDE, or "eXtended Detail

Enhancement," is more than just DVD upconversion. XDE takes DVD picture

quality to a whole new level. In addition to providing upconversion from

480i/p up to 1080p, XDE offers user selectable picture enhancement modes

that allow for greater detail, more vivid colors and stronger contrast that

bring standard DVD quality closer to the HD experience. XDE technology lets

consumers enjoy their existing DVD libraries in a whole new way.

"Consumers have embraced the DVD format like no other technology and

invested in large libraries of their favorite movies. As the market moves

towards high definition, XDE lets them experience their existing DVD

library and the tens of thousands of DVD titles in a whole new way," said

Louis Masses, Director of Product Planning. "XDE offers consumers a simple

solution to add on to their HDTV purchase. XDE works with existing DVDs to

deliver a near HD experience with enhanced detail and richer colors.

Toshiba is delivering to consumers what they want -- a high quality

experience at an affordable price."

XDE Flexibility

In addition to upconversion from 480i/p to 1080p, XDE technology offers

consumers the ability to customize their viewing experience to their liking

with its picture mode settings. With these three selectable settings --

Sharp, Color and Contrast -- users can get the most out of their DVD

movie-viewing experience on their terms.

-- Sharp Mode offers improved detail enhancement that is one step

closer to high definition. Edges are sharper and details in movies are more

visible. Unlike traditional sharpness control, XDE technology analyzes the

entire picture and adds edge enhancement precisely where it's needed.

-- Color Mode makes the colors of nature stand out with improved

richness. Blues and greens are more vivid and lifelike. Color Mode combines

the improvement in color with the detail enhancement of Sharp Mode and is

ideal for outdoor scenes.

-- Contrast Mode is designed to make darker scenes or foregrounds more

clearly visible without the typical "washing out" that can occur with

traditional contrast adjustment. Recommended for dark scenes where detail

may be difficult to notice, Contrast Mode is also combined with Sharp Mode

to provide a clearer viewing experience.

In an effort to reach a broad spectrum of consumers from around the

world, Toshiba's new XDE technology and the exciting experience it

delivers, will be featured in an extensive print and online advertising

campaign. This includes placement on, a site that signifies

strength, performance, diversity and unity among many. A new Web site,, will be launched to help educate consumers on

the benefits of XDE technology and how it works so they can experience the

best of what this new technology has to offer and enjoy their DVD movies in

near HD quality.

XDE will be launched today onboard the XD-E500 1080p/24fps Upconverting

DVD player. Featuring XDE technology, the XD-E500 also incorporates key

features found on today's upconverting standard DVD players such as

HDMI-CEC, DivX certification, JPEG capability,

MP3 and WMA playback and much more in a slim, high-gloss cosmetic

design to complement today's HDTV.

The XD-E500 is shipping this month with an MSRP of $149.99 and can be

found at authorized retailers nationwide. For more information on XDE

please visit or

About Toshiba America Consumer Products, L.L.C.

Toshiba America Consumer Products, L.L.C. is owned by Toshiba America,

Inc., a subsidiary of Toshiba Corporation, a world leader in high

technology products with subsidiaries worldwide. Toshiba is a pioneer in

DVD and DVD Recorder technology and a leading manufacturer of a full line

of home entertainment products, including flat panel TV, combination

products and portable devices. Toshiba America Consumer Products, L.L.C. is

headquartered in Wayne, New Jersey. For additional information please visit

Important Notes

This product does not play HD DVD or Blu-Ray discs. It upconverts

standard definition (480p) DVD content to HD (720p, 1080i or 1080p) to

match the resolution of your HD display. Although near the picture quality,

it does not produce or output native HD video content.

To display upconverted 720p, 1080i or 1080p video content, a 720p,

1080i or 1080p capable HDTV or HD Monitor (as applicable) with an HDCP

capable HDMI or DVI input is required.

The effect of enhancements may vary depending upon disc content quality

and display device capability/functionality/settings. Depending on the

quality of the DVD disc, some video noise may be visible.

Some DVD-R/DVD-RW discs may be incompatible due to laser pick up and

disc design. Some recordable media or recording formats may not be


Compatibility with other HDMI-CEC products will vary by manufacturer.

Some products may not be compatible at all or may only allow for limited


Viewing 24 frames per second requires content created in 480p / 24

frames/sec and an HD display capable of accepting a 1080p/24Hz signal.

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Toshiba are working hard to make everybody forget about HD-DVD. Offering a "better" upscaling DVD player using the CELL processor to filter/sharpen/color enhance picture of DVD for your HDTV. Still, $149 for a DVD player is allot of money when you can get a 1080p upscaling model for $70. It's half the cost of a Blu-Ray player....

I wonder if it offer a better quality DVD playback than the PS3... Since the PS3 does upscale DVD to 1080p and also use the CELL processor, it "could" be easy for Sony to offer the same "feature" found on the XDE player...

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PS3 Pros:

Plays Bluray

Plays PS3 games (PS2 as well, depending on the model)

Plays videos, pictures, and music

Reads memory cards (again, depending on the model)

Built-in WiFi (Stream HD content from PC in separate room is VERY useful to me)

Customizable layout

PS3 cons:

Lack of included "remote"

Size (not a big issue, but certainly worthy of mention)

..... (more I can't think of at the moment)

Standalone player pros:

Plays Bluray

Plays videos, pictures, and music (via disc I would imagine)

Smaller (good for smaller entertainment units?)

IF you just want those features, then by all means buy a standalone unit.

However, if you do or could possibly want the extra features, why not save up and buy it then?

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Toshiba are working hard to make everybody forget about HD-DVD. Offering a "better" upscaling DVD player using the CELL processor to filter/sharpen/color enhance picture of DVD for your HDTV. Still, $149 for a DVD player is allot of money when you can get a 1080p upscaling model for $70. It's half the cost of a Blu-Ray player....

I wonder if it offer a better quality DVD playback than the PS3... Since the PS3 does upscale DVD to 1080p and also use the CELL processor, it "could" be easy for Sony to offer the same "feature" found on the XDE player...

From the initial announcements of upscaling being added to the PS3, I was under the impression the software used will be refined over time.

I still think a PS3 is a better investment than a standalone.

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Brian M.

After no less that 4 reports from 4 completely seperate members, I'm going to close this thread.

It has, once more, turned into a HDDVD vs BluRay etc flamewar, which is not what the op intended. If the op wishes to create a new thread regarding this topic, please feel free to do so, however, the arguing ends here.

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