Leading Consumer Electronics Manufacturers Unveil Latest HD DVD Players
HD DVD Continues to Lead the Way with More Titles from Leading Hollywood Studios
DENVER / Sept. 14, 2006--Today at the CEDIA EXPO 2006, the North American HD DVD Promotion Group showcased growing momentum behind the high definition format, announcing a lineup of hardware and content that deliver "The Look and Sound of Perfect(TM)". The group also launched the HD DVD Mobile Experience, a touring exhibition including an 18-wheeler outfitted with the latest HD DVD products and state-of-the-art video and sound equipment with stops planned in 10 major cities nationwide. With a strong showing of support from top consumer electronics, IT and entertainment partners, including Universal Studios Home Entertainment, Warner Home Video, Paramount Home Entertainment, HP, Intel, Microsoft and Toshiba, HD DVD continues to deliver on the promise of high definition experiences with more titles, superior picture and audio quality and unprecedented interactive features.
As part of the day's announcements, Toshiba launched its second generation HD DVD players for the U.S. market, the HD-A2 and HD-XA2. Both units offer an enhanced sleek cosmetic design with the HD-XA2 model designed to output 1080p (1920 x 1080) resolution, the highest HD signal currently available, via High Definition Multimedia Interface (HDMI(TM)) 1.3. HDMI(TM) version 1.3 is the most current, major enhancement of the HDMI(TM) specification, which more than doubles bandwidth speed and adds support for Deep Color technology. Toshiba's latest players are poised to continue momentum generated by the success of the HD-A1 and HD-XA1 models, which are estimated to be in approximately 25,000 U.S. homes already. The HD-A2 will begin shipping to U.S. retailers in October and the HD-XA2 in December with prices starting at $499 and $999 respectively. These new players compliment the existing roster of Toshiba and RCA/Thomsen HD DVD players on the market today.
Niveus Media Inc. also announced the release of its new HD DVD-enabled media center PCs. Supporting 1080p (1920 x 1080) resolution, these high-end media PCs feature up to four television tuners, 3TB of Storage, 4GB of Memory, ATI and Nvidia graphics, and 8-channel audio. The Rainier Edition, priced at $4,500, is the entry level model in the award-winning line of Niveus Summit Series Media Centers. Scheduled to ship at the end of September, these media centers will be among the first to offer HD DVD playback capability.
Universal Studios Home Entertainment added to the expanding roster of hit movies with the HD DVD release of the 2006 blockbuster "The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift," which will hit stores on September 26. "The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift" will deliver the most advanced interactive features for a movie to date by taking advantage of the flexible HDi(TM) authoring environment and mandatory features only HD DVD guarantees. Picture-in-picture director's commentary, GPS mapping of car scenes and even crash damage estimates provided by Progressive Direct are just some of the features consumers will be able to enjoy throughout the movie playback experience. In addition, "The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift" will be released as a combo disc that can be played in standard DVD players and in high definition.
"The reviews are in and HD DVD is hands down the leader in picture quality, audio experiences and interactive capabilities that have never been seen before," said Craig Kornblau, president of Universal Studios Home Entertainment. "Look at the blogs, look at the reviews by the early adopters and even look at the mainstream media - HD DVD has maintained its first-to-market advantage and delivered on the promises of providing the best high definition image and sound quality at the best value for consumers today. Take today's announcement of new players from Toshiba, new PC hardware from Niveus and new titles like 'The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift,' and add the hardware and movies that are coming this Fall and you can see why HD DVD is poised for a strong holiday."
The lineup of great titles available in HD DVD continues to grow with Warner Home Video's announcement of two highly anticipated titles. On October 10 Warner Home Video will release the 2005 blockbuster "Batman Begins," which includes brand new content in the In Movie Experience (IME), allowing consumers to enjoy this movie in a brand new way. On the same day, the popular animated holiday feature film "Polar Express," starring Tom Hanks, will make its debut in the HD DVD format.
The HD DVD Promotional Group also announced additional studio support, with Rhino Entertainment, a Warner Music Group company specializing in DVD, set to release three new titles: "The Eagles- Live In Melbourne;" "Cream- Live at the Royal Albert Hall;" and "James Taylor- A MusiCares Person of the Year Tribute," all on November 14, 2006. Image Entertainment, Inc. (Nasdaq:DISK
), a leading independent licensee, producer and distributor of home entertainment programming in North America, recently announced its initial slate of HD DVD music titles including: "Chicago/Earth, Wind &amp; Fire: Live at the Greek;" "Heart: Alive in Seattle;" and "Barry Manilow: Manilow Live!"
With more than 60 of the latest and best titles available from major studios, HD DVD already offers the most titles of any high definition format, with nearly 150 titles expected by the end of 2006 including "Mission: Impossible 3." Additionally, the backing of Universal Studios Home Entertainment, Warner Home Video, Paramount Pictures Home Entertainment, HBO, New Line Home Entertainment and The Weinstein Company ensures HD DVD can deliver your favorite feature films and television programs.
About HD DVD
The DVD Forum develops and defines DVD formats. Its more than 200 strong membership brings together leaders in movies and entertainment, computing, consumer electronics and software. In November 2003, the DVD Forum selected a single technology as the next-generation, post-DVD standard for high capacity, high definition optical discs - HD DVD. HD DVD is fast becoming the primary visual medium for the age of high-definition TV. The North American HD DVD Promotional Group, Inc. is an organization established to promote the HD DVD format and educate consumers in North America. For more information and a complete listing of HD DVD launch titles please visit http://www.thelookandsoundofperfect.com/