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General HD DVD news and discussion PART 3

Old 02-01-08, 08:40 PM
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This is the new HD DVD discussion thread. The niche status argument was moved into its own discussion.
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Old 02-01-08, 10:03 PM
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The XA2 (refurbished) has been randomly available for $239 or so on Overstock for the past few days.
uBid.com has also had the XA2 (refurbished) for $263 shipped as well randomly. I picked one up from them...hopefully I get it soon.
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Old 02-02-08, 03:32 AM
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That's a pretty good deal! You've been on the prowl for one for a while, haven't you?
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Old 02-02-08, 12:46 PM
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Originally Posted by RoboDad
That's a pretty good deal! You've been on the prowl for one for a while, haven't you?
Oh yeah. Hopefully this arrives soon.
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Old 02-02-08, 03:45 PM
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I wonder if anyone has done a direct comparison between the A35 and XA2? I know the XA2 has the REON processor, but the A35 seems like a pretty nice player as well. I love my A2. It has performed flawlessly for me up to this point. The A35 and XA2 are the only other players I'm really interested in. The A35 price continues to creep down. Soon it will be pretty hard for me to resist one.

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Old 02-02-08, 03:48 PM
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The XA2, to me, has always been the best HD DVD player available...ever. The build quality is much nicer then the A35 one as well. Can't wait till mine arrives next week.
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Old 02-02-08, 05:11 PM
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Originally Posted by GizmoDVD
The XA2 (refurbished) has been randomly available for $239 or so on Overstock for the past few days.
uBid.com has also had the XA2 (refurbished) for $263 shipped as well randomly. I picked one up from them...hopefully I get it soon.
I got my open box XA2 at Best Buy for $250, missing the remote though, but I'm using my A1 remote without any problems.
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Old 02-02-08, 08:40 PM
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Got an A3 back in October (unfortunately pre-sales), and was thinking if the XA2 was worth it in any way. I do NOT have a 1080p24 TV, but I would like the bitstreamed TrueHD and DTS-HD. Is it worth it? I also still need to get a receiver too, so take it at face value.
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Old 02-02-08, 11:41 PM
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Originally Posted by GizmoDVD
The XA2, to me, has always been the best HD DVD player available...ever. The build quality is much nicer then the A35 one as well. Can't wait till mine arrives next week.
The only bad thing I can say about my XA2 is that I really really really hate its remote control. That's about it.
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Old 02-02-08, 11:56 PM
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Originally Posted by Patman
The only bad thing I can say about my XA2 is that I really really really hate its remote control. That's about it.
I really really really love the XA1 remote. The metal and finish just make it look so....retro?
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Old 02-05-08, 09:53 AM
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My refurbed XA2 arrived yesterday from the aforementioned deal (great deal, especially after a coupon code and some *maybe* Fatwallet fatcash). The fan was very noisy the first time it powered up but that was probably just because it was VERY cold.

Since then it is a tiny bit louder than the A2, but still pretty quiet. About on par with my 20GB PS3. It came with FW 2.5.

I ran a few tests. My favorite DVD torture test these days is Leapfrog Letter Factory (don't laugh at me!). This title combs like crazy the entire time on most DVD players - even on the A2 - there is rarely a solid picture. Perfect on the XA2. I also tested "The Hidden Fortress" interview with George Lucas, which flips from video mode to film mode for movie clips...combing gone. Also tested an anime title - Le Chevalier D'Eon ep 1- that tended to combed a lot during scene changes - combing gone. I'm very satisfied. A VERY worthwhile investment for all of our quirkier SD-DVDs. A big thumbs up to the Reon and the XA2. I dunno yet how much better than the Faroudja 2310 in my projector it is but I don't have to flip between 480i and 720p mode any more.

I also hacked it for PAL playback and region-free per the instructions that have been floating around avsforum lately. Need a remote code hack for RCE discs but works great otherwise!
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Old 02-05-08, 11:09 AM
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I heard about the region hacks...seems like a pain to do...but might be worth it.
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Old 02-05-08, 11:41 AM
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I might try it tonight, but can't find the 1.6 firmware, any ideas? Is there an archive of all the Toshiba firmwares?
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Old 02-05-08, 12:14 PM
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AVS forum thread on the PAL / Region-free hacking as I had some requests for it:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=988167

Read carefully before proceeding. Some folks are saying it leaves their player stuck booting in PAL resolution to setup menus and such. It sounds like the people with problems have displays that perhaps don't support 50hz at 720p/1080i/etc. You might want to wait a bit until the kinks are ironed out.

I think they are mistaken, though. I had no video during the PAL firmware steps but it was restored just like normal when I applied 2.7 US.



--------------------
As far as finding firmwares... I first updated to 2.8 via the player download so I could follow the instructions precisely.

I got the Europe 2.5.0.1 via torrents, the necessary 1.3 XA2 firmware here: http://www.spannerworks.net/reference/10_11a.asp and hackem them both with xrad's instructions.

and
I got the official 2.7 from an avsforum thread that had direct links to the firmware on the Tosh website...I dug that up with google somehow.

Last edited by GreenMonkey; 02-05-08 at 12:36 PM.
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Old 02-06-08, 11:35 AM
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Microsoft has dropped the price of the 360 AO to $129.99. King Kong is still included. Effective today. Amazon had this has a Gold Box today for $79.99, sold out in what seems like 30 minutes.

http://www.majornelson.com/archive/2....aspx#comments
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Old 02-06-08, 11:39 AM
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The AO at 129.99 is a joke. MSRP on that should be at least 99.99. Who in their right mind would get an AO over an A3?
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Old 02-06-08, 11:41 AM
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Originally Posted by tonymontana313
The AO at 129.99 is a joke. MSRP on that should be at least 99.99. Who in their right mind would get an AO over an A3?
$99.99 would be a much better value.

Some people may not have extra components on the back of their TV, or like the ease of the 360 AO vs. the A3. Loading time. I prefer the lighted 360 remote over the A3 one. However, I personally would never own the 360 AO ever again, but I'm sure there are plenty (especially since this can be hooked up to a PC).
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Old 02-06-08, 12:00 PM
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Originally Posted by tonymontana313
The AO at 129.99 is a joke. MSRP on that should be at least 99.99. Who in their right mind would get an AO over an A3?
Total agreement.
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Old 02-06-08, 12:25 PM
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Originally Posted by tonymontana313
The AO at 129.99 is a joke. MSRP on that should be at least 99.99. Who in their right mind would get an AO over an A3?
I disagree only because I'd use the add-on with my HTPC, where I cannot do the same with the A3.
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Old 02-06-08, 12:48 PM
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The add-on price drop happened about 2 months late. They should have dropped the price in November, just like Toshiba should've done.
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Old 02-06-08, 08:59 PM
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I have the add on. It plays HD-DVDs so I'm not complaining. My LCD isn't 1080P so I don't see the problem.
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Old 03-24-09, 03:51 PM
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Re: General HD DVD news and discussion PART 3

Old thread, but I need some player help.

On my A1, I was watching Training Day last night. For some reason, the volume is much better when DD+ is selected. When I switched to TrueHD audio, the volume drops significantly. I have to turn the volume up at least 10 db just to hear everything. Something is not quite right here.
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Old 03-24-09, 04:27 PM
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Re: General HD DVD news and discussion PART 3

Originally Posted by Mr. Cinema View Post
Old thread, but I need some player help.

On my A1, I was watching Training Day last night. For some reason, the volume is much better when DD+ is selected. When I switched to TrueHD audio, the volume drops significantly. I have to turn the volume up at least 10 db just to hear everything. Something is not quite right here.
Don't know for sure if "Training Day" was one of them, but I definitely remember there were several early TrueHD titles ("Phantom of the Opera" being one) which had the -10db problem. It's a pain, but it should just be a matter of boosting the volume to compensate.
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Old 03-24-09, 04:33 PM
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Re: General HD DVD news and discussion PART 3

Are you talking about the subwoofer issue?

I'm not referring to that. I mean in general, the volume on the TrueHD audio is extremely low. I can barely hear anything. The DD+ is much fuller and at a much higher volume level. It's a night and day difference. The TrueHD should be the one that sounds like that, but it's not. I'm wondering if something in my Toshiba settings is screwed up.

This is the first time I've watched a HD DVD with lossless while using the A1 and my HDMI 1.3 Sony receiver, so I'm wondering if something in the A1 setup is wrong.

Last edited by Mr. Cinema; 03-24-09 at 04:43 PM.
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Old 03-24-09, 04:51 PM
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Re: General HD DVD news and discussion PART 3

Originally Posted by Mr. Cinema View Post
Are you talking about the subwoofer issue?

I'm not referring to that. I mean in general, the volume on the TrueHD audio is extremely low. I can barely hear anything. The DD+ is much fuller and at a much higher volume level. It's a night and day difference. The TrueHD should be the one that sounds like that, but it's not. I'm wondering if something in my Toshiba settings is screwed up.

This is the first time I've watched a HD DVD with lossless while using the A1 and my HDMI 1.3 Sony receiver, so I'm wondering if something in the A1 setup is wrong.
No, the subwoofer issue was something else entirely, and was/is an issue with the player itself, not the media. The -10db issue was software related. Again, I'm not 100% that it affected "Training Day", but I know it was an issue with "Phantom of the Opera". I'm pretty sure it's mentioned in the reviews both here and at HighDefDigest.
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