HD-XA1 Experience


Oct 27, 2006
Real Name
Daniel Gigante
I purchased my Toshiba HD-XA1 on-line through Vann's at the price of $549.88 w/free ground shipping. It seemed like a good deal. Vann's is an authorized dealer so I knew there wouldn't be any warranty issues. I own a very good multi-format, CD/DVD player , the Denon 2900. However since I got into a high definition Optoma EP-739 projector with DVI input, I was anxious to see my existing SD/DVD collection upscaled to 720p on my 60x84, 100" diag. 4:3 screen. I purchased a few HD/DVD's to see just how good HD-DVD was and I wasn't disappointed in the least. Apollo 13 was incredible. I was able to utilize the 6 channel analog output into my Sunfire Theater Grand II processor for the best 5.1 sound i've heard from my system.
However, the bad news came when I tried playing one of my many concert DVD's which are all recorded in 4:3 full screen format. I set the HD-XA1 to play on a 4:3 screen in the set-up menu. I have 4:3 selected on my Optoma EP-739 and it plays my video with black bars on the sides(pillar-boxed) as if I had a 16:9 screen. Not only does it have the bars on the sides , but the image is slightly stretched vertically. Not good. I hooked up the unit to my DSL line and downloaded the latest firmware available, v.2.0 and nothing changed. Next I called Toshiba tech support. These guys are very knowledgeable and courteous. They hadn't run into this before. I must be the only one out here that watches High Def on a 4:3 display. After 3 phone calls and tried every possible set-up configuration they concluded that nothing is defective, this is how the unit works and until they come up with a firmware to change it, I'm sort of screwed. Anyone want a HD-XA1? It's going on Ebay soon. I purchased this mostly for the feature of being able to upscale my existing DVD's and buying a few HD-DVD's also. I just ordered an Oppo OPDV971H DVD player to upscale my SD/DVD's at $199.00 + shipping from ProjectorPeople.com. I hope it lives up to all the hype and also that it doesn't "pillar-box" my 4:3 videos.

jeff peterson

Supporting Actor
Nov 29, 1998
Radar; it's my understanding that the XA1 hasn't been released yet. Are you sure of the model number?

Steve Tannehill

Senior HTF Member
Jul 6, 1997
Real Name
Steve Tannehill
The HD-A1 and HD-XA1 were both released in April. The A2 and XA2 are coming soon.

- Steve

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