XA2 vs. A35 (need a backup before stock run out) - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 17 Old 03-05-2008, 02:20 PM - Thread Starter
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Hi guys!

I understand that the XA2 will be superior to the A35 due to the Reon chip for SD upconversion, but does the Reon do anything with HD DVD????

I still have my HD-A1 and would like to get one new before stocks run dry.

So, for HD DVD playback - which unit will be best? Does the XA2 output and decode the same audio as the A35???
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post #2 of 17 Old 03-05-2008, 05:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Webmonkey View Post

Hi guys!

I understand that the XA2 will be superior to the A35 due to the Reon chip for SD upconversion, but does the Reon do anything with HD DVD????

I still have my HD-A1 and would like to get one new before stocks run dry.

So, for HD DVD playback - which unit will be best? Does the XA2 output and decode the same audio as the A35???

Get an XA2. You will be very happy!
And yes the XA2 will put out the same bitstream audio as the A35.
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post #3 of 17 Old 03-05-2008, 05:54 PM
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for audio, they are essentially the same.

for sd, many have reported the xa2 is better because of the Reon chip which allows for picture adjustments (i don't own an xa2 so I don't know but do believe what I read about this on the internet ).

for hd-dvd, many have reported the A35 to have a sharper picture than the xa2 with the xa2's pciture being somewhat soft. I have an A35 and am very pleased with it.

both are great players. the xa2 is/was toshiba's flagship hd-dvd player. however, for the cost you can get an A35 for brand new vs. an xa2, and given the fact you will most likely be using it for only hd-dvd, i'd probably go for the A35. if you were really really really really concerned about SD, then i'd lean toward the xa2 even though i think the A35 does a pretty damn good job at that as well.
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post #4 of 17 Old 03-05-2008, 08:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Webmonkey View Post

Hi guys!

I understand that the XA2 will be superior to the A35 due to the Reon chip for SD upconversion, but does the Reon do anything with HD DVD????

I still have my HD-A1 and would like to get one new before stocks run dry.

So, for HD DVD playback - which unit will be best? Does the XA2 output and decode the same audio as the A35???

There seems to be some debate on if the XA2 does a TRUE 24p output....

Read the March issue of Widescreen Review which has a review of the A35 and explains why it is better than the XA2 for HD-DVD at 1080/24p, and why it is the best player on the market for 24p playback. According to the article, the XA2 does not do true 24p but has to go through an additional 1080i step before getting the 24p while the A35 supposedly does it correctly. This would explain why some have seen a sharper pic with the A35 which I can attest to as my A35 seems to put out a slightly sharper and slightly more fluid pic compared to my XA2 at 1080/24p.

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post #5 of 17 Old 03-05-2008, 09:55 PM
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It's a shame that these players don't have an auto output where if the sources is 1080p, it outputs 1080p, and if the source is 480i, it outputs 480i. With my newly acquired A35, if I play special features on an HD DVD disc that aren't in HD, it's pretty much unwatchable. Terrible and distracting combing going on. With the 805 (XA2 equivalent), there is no problems watching the special features on discs. Why couldn't Tosh allow for whatever the source is, to be outputted. Send 480i for the special features and let my TV handle it.
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post #6 of 17 Old 03-06-2008, 04:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Webmonkey View Post

...but does the Reon do anything with HD DVD????

The Reon reportedly does process the XA2's HD DVD output, and apparently does it very well. High-Def Digest has a review article for the XA2 here that discusses 1080p (source disc)=>1080i (Broadcom chip)=>1080p (Reon) processing in the XA2. See the "1080p: Miracle Feature or Hype?" paragraph.

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post #7 of 17 Old 03-06-2008, 05:33 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Weyland Yutani View Post

The Reon reportedly does process the XA2's HD DVD output, and apparently does it very well. High-Def Digest has a review article for the XA2 here that discusses 1080p (source disc)=>1080i (Broadcom chip)=>1080p (Reon) processing in the XA2. See the "1080p: Miracle Feature or Hype?" paragraph.

ah, I just read something similar on hometheaterhifi.com - they state that the NEC decoder on the XA2 only outputs 1080i - what about the decoder in the A35???


I am very happyt with the 1080i/60Hz output on my HD-A1, but the day I get a digital, I might want 1080p/24.

(I am using a Barco Graphics 808 CRT projector)

Thanks for the replies guys!
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post #8 of 17 Old 03-06-2008, 07:19 AM
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I used to have the XA2 and A35; the A35 was slightly sharper at 1080p/24. I remember posting comments about this and a lot of people didn't want to believe it, but it was true.

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post #9 of 17 Old 03-06-2008, 08:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidHir View Post

I used to have the XA2 and A35; the A35 was slightly sharper at 1080p/24. I remember posting comments about this and a lot of people didn't want to believe it, but it was true.

I am seeing the same thing with my new A35. I bet there is truth to the WSR report that the XA2 has to go through an additional 1080i step for 24p output which would explain this.

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post #10 of 17 Old 03-06-2008, 08:45 AM
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What would be better for 1080i 60?
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post #11 of 17 Old 03-06-2008, 09:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toe View Post

I am seeing the same thing with my new A35. I bet there is truth to the WSR report that the XA2 has to go through an additional 1080i step for 24p output which would explain this.

My understanding with the XA2 firmware and 1080p24 that version 2.7 is the best and firmware version 2.8 is best for 1080i or 1080p60. Hopefully Toshiba will release another firmware fix for all modes 1080i, 1080p60 and 1080p24 to give the "best" PQ.

But reading about the A35 it seems to be better at 1080p24 but not so good compared to the XA2 at 1080i, 1080p60 mode or up-converting DVD.

Correct me if I'm wrong.

...Angelo

2x HD-XA2 firmware 3.0
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post #12 of 17 Old 03-07-2008, 12:22 PM
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Get whatever you have easier access to and a better price on. I have both and they are both great players. Better get one though, before stock runs out.

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post #13 of 17 Old 03-08-2008, 09:53 AM
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Originally Posted by aod View Post

Get whatever you have easier access to and a better price on. I have both and they are both great players. Better get one though, before stock runs out.

I just picked up an A35 open box at Best Buy this morning. $ 50.00 with broken remote (cracked case- maybe someone dropped it?) At this price I'll just hang on to it for a spare should one of my XA2s die in a couple of years. Questions for all you A35 experts, What is the best firmware to use on this model? I have a 1080p/24 57" LCD by Samsung. Thanks in advance.
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post #14 of 17 Old 03-09-2008, 09:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blackssr View Post

I just picked up an A35 open box at Best Buy this morning. $ 50.00 with broken remote (cracked case- maybe someone dropped it?) At this price I'll just hang on to it for a spare should one of my XA2s die in a couple of years.

FYI the A2 and A35 have the same exact remote (I have both) and probably your XA2 remote will work fine with it, if you haven't already tested it.
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post #15 of 17 Old 03-09-2008, 09:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blackssr View Post

I just picked up an A35 open box at Best Buy this morning. $ 50.00 with broken remote (cracked case- maybe someone dropped it?) At this price I'll just hang on to it for a spare should one of my XA2s die in a couple of years. Questions for all you A35 experts, What is the best firmware to use on this model? I have a 1080p/24 57" LCD by Samsung. Thanks in advance.


Use FW 1.3 for the A35 for 1080/24p playback. Dont use 2.0 as there are 1080/24p issues with 2.0 FW.

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post #16 of 17 Old 03-10-2008, 07:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BioSehnsucht View Post

FYI the A2 and A35 have the same exact remote (I have both) and probably your XA2 remote will work fine with it, if you haven't already tested it.

Thanks, I use a color Pronto Pro 7500. You are correct; the XA2 remote works like a champ.
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post #17 of 17 Old 03-10-2008, 07:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toe View Post

Use FW 1.3 for the A35 for 1080/24p playback. Dont use 2.0 as there are 1080/24p issues with 2.0 FW.

Thanks for quick response. Updated to 1.3. HD PQ = to XA2, SD DVD PQ not as good but for $ 50.00 it will do!
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