Feeds
80%
Toshiba HD-XE1 HD DVD player

Toshiba HD-XE1 HD DVD player

Tosh brings in 1080p on a budget

Business security measures using SSL

So what's the player actually like to use? Well, once you get it going, very good. Like the HD-E1, it's rather slow to start up, taking 40 seconds from switch-on until it'll accept a disc, and a further 30 seconds until it will do anything with it. It's almost like it has to be wound up before it can do anything. It can also feel a bit sluggish in response to key presses at times, so sometimes you end up pressing the same button a couple of times before it appears to register what you want to do.

Toshiba HD-XE1 HD DVD player

Pop in an HD DVD disc, however, and all these issues seem less important. The crisp, sharp images and huge level of detail make you wonder how you managed with plain old DVD.

During the races in The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift it feels as if you're almost inside the car with them during action - which is just as well really as it's a distraction from the paper-thin plot. Smoke filled scenes, such as the police raid on the BTN centre in V for Vendetta, look crisp and defined rather than fogged and blurry. The difference between 720p and 1080p isn't as marked as that between normal DVD and 720p, but it does add an extra layer of realism.

Pop in a regular DVD and the HD-EX1 will upscale it from its standard-definition resolution to HD with decent quality results. An HD DVD will easily surpass the quality of an upscaled DVD, but if you're still waiting for your favourite title to be released in HD then it will certainly allow you to chuck out or pass on your old DVD player.

Verdict

With an retail proce of around £650, the HD-XE1 is still reasonably priced when you consider its features. Given that you'll need a fairly high-end telly to make the most of it, it's competitively priced and, PlayStation 3 aside, still cheaper than the nearest-specced Blu-ray rivals. Hunt around and you should be able to get it from around £150 less.

New hybrid storage solutions

80%
Toshiba HD-XE1 HD DVD player

Toshiba HD-XE1 HD DVD player

Supporting 1080p, HDMI 1.3 and a decent price, this won't disappoint - if you've got kit to pair it with...
Price: £650 inc VAT RRP

More from The Register

next story
Half a BILLION in the making: Bungie's Destiny reviewed
It feels very familiar - but it's still good
Apple's big bang: iPhone 6, ANOTHER iPhone 6 Plus and WATCH OUT
Let's >sigh< see what Cupertino has been up to for the past year
Huawei ditches new Windows Phone mobe plans, blames poor sales
Giganto mobe firm slams door shut on Microsoft. OH DEAR
A SCORCHIO fatboy SSD: Samsung SSD850 PRO 3D V-NAND
4Gb/s speeds on a consumer drive, anyone?
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Get your Indian Landfill Android One handsets - they're only SIXTY QUID
Cheap and deafening mobes for the subcontinental masses
Apple's SNEAKY plan: COPY ANDROID. Hello iPhone 6, Watch
Sizes, prices and all – but not for the wrist-o-puter
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.