Toshiba today introduced its first products incorporating Blu-ray drives in Japan, including two HDTVs with integrated Blu-ray drives, three models of Blu-ray recorders and one Blu-ray player. The TVs include the 26-inch 26R1BDP and 32-inch 32R1BDP; each has a side-mounted, slot-loading Blu-ray drive that lets them play HD movies at the sets’ native 720p resolutions.
While the new TVs have no built-in hard drives, they do support recording onto an external hard drive over their integrated USB connections. The TVs also have support for BD-Live for Internet-based special features. Standard definition video gets a boost through Toshiba’s usual emphasis on upscaling to near HD levels.
The VARDIA HDD recorders, the D-B305K, D-B1005K, and D-BW1005K, record HDTV to Blu-ray and their hard disks. The entry D-B305K has a 320GB hard drive, while the middle gets a larger 1TB drive and the top model gets both a 1TB drive and a VHS tape deck to record to the aging analog standard.
The three recorders have HDMI-CEC support, or what Toshiba calls REGZA-LINK, allowing one remote to control both them and a compatible HDTV.
All products are scheduled to ship in Japan in mid-February, though prices have not been revealed. North American releases aren’t as likely for the recorders as few Japanese companies export those devices; it’s just as unclear as to whether the Blu-ray equipped TVs will reach other countries.