Manufacturer: Toshiba Part number: HDA-30
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as of 04/17/2014
CNET editors' review
price range: $299.00
- Reviewed by: Matthew Moskovciak
- Edited by: John Falcone
- Reviewed on: 10/11/2007
- Released on: 09/15/2007
The good: Excellent image quality in 1080i and 1080p/24 mode; Ethernet jack for firmware updates; Dolby TrueHD decoding.
The bad: Image quality in 1080p mode disappointing; no analog multichannel outputs; not much of an upgrade over cheaper HD-A3.
The bottom line: The Toshiba HD-A30 is a solid third-generation HD DVD player, but for most people it's not worth the extra dough.
Don't waste your money on this.
by stoke0703 on January 14, 2008
Pros: Has a nice picture while it works.
Cons: Did not work right out of the box on HD movies.
Summary: We bought the A30 instead of the A3 because it was supposed to be the better player. The picture that shows up on my 1080p screen is very nice but ...
Summary: We bought the A30 instead of the A3 because it was supposed to be the better player. The picture that shows up on my 1080p screen is very nice but it didnt work on HD movies without a firmware update. Now you have to get the firmware off of the Toshiba website but when we tried this we kept getting error messages. Then we called Toshiba and they told me that they were going to send me the firmware in the mail in 7-10 days. What it comes down to is that when we bought this player 3 weeks ago I sent off for the firmware and have yet to receive it. It is ridiculous in my opinion that you have to update something before you can use it for what it was intended for, PLAYING HD MOVIES. If it wasn't for my wife this thing would be smashed in the street right now. This will be the only Toshiba product that will ever grace my home. As I type this we still have not gotten the firmware and cant use our player without having to start and stop it several times on HD movies.
Must have for larger HD TVs
by ultimateduck on January 14, 2008
Pros: Great picture
Cons: Slower "boot up" than a regular DVD
Summary: My time isnt so valuable that Im going to ***** about a 30 second delay as the unit boots up. It is a bit slower than a standard DVD but its ...
Summary: My time isnt so valuable that Im going to ***** about a 30 second delay as the unit boots up. It is a bit slower than a standard DVD but its not so bad that Im going to give it a poor review. Some say they had to wait two minutes.
If you have a larger TV (I have a 60" 1080p sony), you have to get this. I watched the non-HD-DVD Lord of the Rings (as well as a ton of other movies) on my old DVD (progressive scan) and couldnt get past the "pixal" look on their faces when they did closeups. The HD-DVD up conversion is near perfect. HD-DVDs are amazing and seamless during high action scenes. Its definately better than HD movies on Cable, by far.
I havent had the techincal issues some others have had here. I hit open/eject and about 20 seconds later I have a disk in... about 20 seconds after that Im watching a movie. Some standard DVDs did not upconvert well (Oceans 13 and Bourn Identity come to mind) with a kind of shadow effect, but every other movie we have (about 60) looked great.
If you have a large set and love to watch movies, give it a try. If your set is 50" or smaller it may not be worth it.
Excellent 1080p resolution
by bruiserboy on January 4, 2008
Pros: Great picture quality, great sound quality, brings my Bravia (XBR2) to life!
Cons: Have to restart discs from the beginning if you press the stop button.
Summary: I upgraded to this player from my xbox hd add on and I have been nothing but impressed. It takes a minute or so to load up a disc from ...
Summary: I upgraded to this player from my xbox hd add on and I have been nothing but impressed. It takes a minute or so to load up a disc from pressing the on button, but it's not bad. I got 10 free movies with this player and I got it for less than half of the original price,so I can't complain about the cost upgrade from the HDA3 player. Now, these guys are saying that there is no difference in resolution from 1080i to 1080p, but I have to disagree. I have compared a number of films (The Order of the Phoenix, Bourne Identity, Knocked Up) between the two and 1080p looks better than 1080i. The edges look sharper and the noise level is reduced. Great player!!!
Excellent picture at a low price
by chuckkel on December 25, 2007
Pros: Upconverts std DVD to near HD quality
Cons: Slow startup.
Summary: Purchased HD Player 12/23/07 after purchasing Panasonic 56" 1080P TV. Price reduced to $250 plus 7 free HD-DVD movies (at $25 per HD-DVD movie or $175 worth of ...
Summary: Purchased HD Player 12/23/07 after purchasing Panasonic 56" 1080P TV. Price reduced to $250 plus 7 free HD-DVD movies (at $25 per HD-DVD movie or $175 worth of movies, the player only costs $75, much better than the $450 Blu-Ray). On new TV, excellent picture with even old std DVDs.
by gccc44 on December 20, 2007
Pros: Makes regular dvds look better.
Cons: dated styling
Summary: I'm not audiophile, but I just hooked up my new Pioneer Elite monitor along with a Pioneer 92 a/v reciever and a Toshiba A 30 HD DVD player. ...
Summary: I'm not audiophile, but I just hooked up my new Pioneer Elite monitor along with a Pioneer 92 a/v reciever and a Toshiba A 30 HD DVD player. I played a HD DVD of "Knocked Up" and it looked pretty good and then I played a regular dvd of "It's a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World". (the funniest movie ever made), and it really seemed to make the regular dvd look a whole lot better. In fact, I was so pleased with the upconverting that I wonder if I'll even bother replacing my regular dvds with HD versions. I also played a regular dvd of "the incredibles" and it looked pretty darn good. Again, maybe not as good as HD DVD, but I was happy. However, I am not as picky as most of you on this site. I played the regular dvds at 1080p/24 frames and I could see jagged edges and funky stuff happening in certain areas of the picture, but when I switched it to 1080i maximum output, all that jagged stuff went away and it looked very good.
Hey, it may not take much, but I'm happy with the purchase. The also had two free HD DVDs in the box.
All the connections were with HDMI cables.
One other thing that may help is to know that I don't actually like the super clarity of HD DVDs..... the picture is actually sharper than the human eye can see, so it makes the movie look a bit 'unrealistic'. I turned down the sharpness on the Pioneer monitor to take a little edge off the super sharpness. Call me nutty, but I like a bit more "softness" to the picture. To me, that looks more natural.
I'm pretty pleased with everything, although I haven't really gotten in there and played around more than the basics.
I love this machine
by Jaws17 on December 17, 2007
Pros: Beautiful Picture in 1080P 24FPS
Cons: Still a liilte pricey, unless on sale. Not all studios produce movies on HD-DVD
Summary: I just bought a new 1080P LCD TV and was loking for a HD player to make it shine.
This was it.
Great picture, quick load times and much cheaper ...
Summary: I just bought a new 1080P LCD TV and was loking for a HD player to make it shine.
This was it.
Great picture, quick load times and much cheaper than a PS3 or decent Blu ray.
Simple remote, easy use, good looks.
If only the Sony and Disney titles were available on HD-DVD
Biggest POS I've Ever Bought
by geofred on December 11, 2007
Pros: None - it doesn't work
Cons: Everything - It doesn't work; firmware updates are difficult
Summary: Save your money, or spend it on a Blu-Ray player. I have yet to view a DVD on this worthless piece of junk. All I ever get is an error ...
Summary: Save your money, or spend it on a Blu-Ray player. I have yet to view a DVD on this worthless piece of junk. All I ever get is an error message which says "This disc is not DVD format. Cannot play this disc". I wasted an evening downloading the latest firmware update and burning it to DVD. When I put the DVD in the player to update the firmware, I got the same message. This thing is being returned tomorrow. I should have known that with Microsoft involved in the development and promotion of HD DVD that it would be worthless.
Good HD, if it keeps working
by rickallen81 on December 10, 2007
Pros: awesome HD picture, fine details
Cons: slow loading, subpar upconversion, errors, black bars
Summary: I was excited to get my hands on the newest format and display it on my new 1080p plasma. Once I plugged it in and started to watch, I was ...
Summary: I was excited to get my hands on the newest format and display it on my new 1080p plasma. Once I plugged it in and started to watch, I was put off by the annoyingly slow time it took to even open the tray. That requires a complete boot-up of the system and delays watching pleasure. Once the disc was in, it took another half minute to boot up. Once picture was displayed, I was impressed with the fine details and colors displayed by HD-DVD. Transformers, with its fast motion and superb action, looked amazingly crisp and realistic. Other movies impressed me with their clarity, which livened up previously matted scenes. While all this was certainly an upgrade, I wasn't yet convinced it was worth the 400 dollars I spent.
Regular DVD's further talked me out of keeping the player. Upconversion was dismal. I have been spoiled by the superb upconverting abilities of the OPPO DV-980H. It makes the Toshiba's upconverting look cheap. Even without the comparison, the Toshiba had trouble smoothing out gradations and edges. Blacks came out more gray and darkened rooms looked as if they were full of mosquitoes. This was far from what I had seen on my Oppo, and much less than what I wanted out of a 400 dollar machine.
My mind got made up for me, however, when playing three separate discs. I watched a fresh-from-the-box disc of Hot Fuzz. Twice during the movie, the player hit errors and the audio sped up while the video became choppy. Stopping then going to the next scene fixed it, but that shouldn't happen. Top Gun hit errors 6 times. Video would start to slow and the player would freeze altogether, leaving an error code displayed on the screen. This error also happened with 300 which was a brand new DVD, too.
Another nit-pick I have is that none of the DVD's I bought or rented filled the entire screen. All of them had black bars. I appreciate true widescreen, but I also appreciate using all 1080 lines of resolution. This, along with the errors, just broke the camel's back, if you will.
In the end, my Oppo simply does a better job of playing the DVD's I already have. They look almost as good as HD, it was cheap, and never messes up. It even looks better. For 400 dollars, the Toshiba could at least make an effort to look better than a Wal-mart DVD player. 1080p is the future, but until it gets much more refined and much less expensive, it doesn't make a compelling case for purchase. That, and there is still a chance that either HD-DVD or Blu-Ray could drop out of competition. Until then, save your money. Or, save your receipt.
Good Picture and Sound, feels like something is missing!
by sndper on December 4, 2007
Pros: Easy to use, great picture, 1080p/24 support
Cons: Slow load time
Summary: Good, solid all around unit, however I would have expected more out of the Toshiba unit. If I had known before I got it that the differences between the a30 ...
Summary: Good, solid all around unit, however I would have expected more out of the Toshiba unit. If I had known before I got it that the differences between the a30 and the a3 were as few as there are, I would have saved the money and purchased the a3.
Much better than an Xbox360 for HD-DVD playback
by wickedbob on November 30, 2007
Pros: 1080p Full HD picture and PCM audio over HDMI
Cons: Slow to power on
Summary: Excellent value HD-DVD player for someone who wants Full HD video and audio. Movies appear sharper on this player than in my previous Xbox HD-DVD player and the uncompressed audio ...
Summary: Excellent value HD-DVD player for someone who wants Full HD video and audio. Movies appear sharper on this player than in my previous Xbox HD-DVD player and the uncompressed audio just sounds so much better too.
Updating firmware via the internet was pretty straightforward and some of the internet-enabled content on HD-DVD discs is cool. Wouldn't hesitate to recommend this player to any budget-conscious HD buyer. Dive in people!
- Manufacturer: Toshiba
- Part number: HDA-30
- Description: For the highest level of picture quality with today's best performing high definition TVs, the HD-A30 adds 1080p output. That is twice the resolution of a 720p signal. The HD-A30 is equipped With CE-Link HDMI -CEC connectivity. This convenient feature offers the capability to communicate with and control another HDMI-CEC compatible device in a completely new way. 1080p/24 frames per second (24p) support offers a smoother, more film-like, viewing experience. Traditionally, movie films are captured at 24 Frames per second. The HD-A30 HD DVD player maintains this frame rate, allowing consumers to enjoy movies in their native frame rate.
- Component type HD DVD player
- Form factor Tabletop
- Dimensions (WxDxH) 16.9 in x 12.9 in x 2.3 in
- Weight 7.3 lbs
- Enclosure color Black
- Media Type CD-R,
- Media Format NTSC
- Built-in Audio Decoders DTS-HD decoder,
Dolby Digital Plus,
- Changer Capacity 1
- Upscaling Yes ( Up to 1080p )
- Additional features On-screen display
- Sound Output Mode Surround Sound
- Digital Audio Format Dolby Digital output,
DTS digital output
- Connector type 1 x Network ( RJ-45 ),
1 x Component video output ( RCA phono x 3 ) - Rear,
1 x Composite video output ( RCA phono ) - Rear,
1 x HDMI ( 19 pin HDMI Type A ) - Rear,
1 x Digital audio output (optical) ( TOSLINK ) - Rear,
1 x Audio line-out ( RCA phono x 2 ) - Rear
- Type Universal remote control - Infrared
Dimensions & Weight (Shipping)
- Width 19.7 in
- Depth 16.1 in
- Height 5.6 in