Best Buy Unveils HD DVD (And I Don’t Care)

Dave Zatz —  April 15, 2006

The first HD DVD player is now for sale at my local Best Buy (Washington, DC), though they have no DVDs to go along with it. In fact, they didn’t even have a sample HD disc in the demo unit. The Toshiba HD-A1 is pretty bulky, even larger than the initial batch of first gen DVD players, but the remote is sexy. At $499 with a questionable improvement in picture quality, potentially restrictive HDMI requirements, and unhacked copy protection I’ll be on the sidelines for at least a year. By the time I get onboard, perhaps dual HD DVD/Blu-ray players will exist or maybe one format will have been decided upon… Yeah, right!

9 responses to Best Buy Unveils HD DVD (And I Don’t Care)

  1. I will be more excited about the Blu-Ray release, but I don’t see how anyone who loves movies and HD couldn’t be excited about this.

  2. Mini-Disc vs CD all over again!

  3. “Questionable” improvement in picture quality? I have to disagree with you there…

  4. From a per pixel standpoint of source material, there’s no question a HiDef DVD player exceeds 480p and upconverted content. However, when set size and viewing distance are factored in not everyone will see a significant improvement in PQ.

  5. I probably won’t be buying into HD/Blu until there’s an affordable DVD-ROM drive that can play one or both of them that I can stick into my computer.

  6. Well if you have a 30″ widescreen TV, I’m sure the best SD might almost seem as good as the worst HD from a distance. But I have a 57″ HDTV and the difference is night and day. Even my wife complains when a show isn’t available in HD.

  7. PS3 for Blu-Ray and the HD-DVD add-on for the xbox 360 means I can am covered for both formats for under 800 dollars.

  8. Ben, whose opinion I respect, over at HD Beat has posted a hand’s on review of the HD-A1. Based on his analysis, I’ll be holding on to my upconverting DVD player until both the price and size of the new players drop 50%.