NEWS: Toshiba rolls out new DVD player and recorder range

Only one exhibition room at Toshiba's product launch last week had tables in it, where visitors could sit and relax while speculating what should have occupied the space...

That was the room holding the company's video disc players and recorders, but notwithstanding what was no longer there, a strong range of hardware was on display, including the £55 SD-480E upscaling DVD player (above).

It's one of two upscaling players in the range: £10 more buys you the SD-580E, which has the same 1080p scaling, HDMI output with Regza Link control and DivX capability, but also adds a USB input for playback of media on memory keys and other portable devices.

The recorder range includes several hard-disk-equipped models, again with upscaling, Regza Link and built-in Freeview and analogue tuners. They also support Freeview Replay, which allows you to pause, rewind and record digital programmes, as well as offering trick features such as series link recording.

The £230 RD-88DT combines a DVD recorder with a 160GB hard drive, while the RD-98DT ups the disc capacity to 250GB for an extra £50. There's also a 'belt and braces; machine in the range: the £250 RD-XV48DT (above) has a DVD recorder, 160GB hard drive and a VHS deck.

The portable line-up includes two models claiming extended battery life. The £110 SD-P71 has a 7in screen and a three-hour nominal running time, though Toshiba says it's achieved over five hours in the lab, while the £160 SD-P91 has a 9in rotating screen, USB input and a nominal five hour battery life.

Completing the range is the SD-P120DT (left), which combines a DVD player, 11.8in screen and Freeview tuner.

It has HDMI and component inputs for gaming enthusiasts, and a four-in-one card reader handling SD, MMC, XD and MermoryStick media.

Toshiba expects this model to be popular with the caravanning and boating communities, too.

Andrew has written about audio and video products for the past 20+ years, and been a consumer journalist for more than 30 years, starting his career on camera magazines. Andrew has contributed to titles including What Hi-Fi?, GramophoneJazzwise and Hi-Fi CriticHi-Fi News & Record Review and Hi-Fi Choice. I’ve also written for a number of non-specialist and overseas magazines.