Toshiba lost the high-def battle with the HD DVD format and it appears the firm has now turned its attention to 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.