Radical Action

No, we cannot just get alongI was dazzled to see Toshiba’s A2 HD-DVD player slashed to just $349 at Future Shop this weekend — and that includes those three free discs! — though I still couldn’t bring myself to buy one: It doesn’t output 1080p, and it takes a full 40 seconds to boot up and open its disc tray, which I still find incredibly frustrating.

It probably won’t hurt to hold out a little longer. Toshiba’s only going to get more and more inventive on its price cuts and rebates … and I have a feeling the holiday season will bring some heavy discount action on the A20, which does offer 1080p and is apparently a little faster on the draw than its buddies.

Of course, that’s assuming the HD-DVD camp doesn’t crawl into a hole and die over the summer, having been dealt a potentially lethal blow by Blockbuster’s decision to exclusively rent Blu-ray titles in its stores. The chain will continue to offer HD-DVD discs for sale online, but the announcement that Blu-ray will be the high-def format of choice in its brick-and-mortar locations is pretty dramatic.

If you do want that A2, the price is valid until Thursday. Me, I think I’ll wait until they offer a Simon Pegg bundle — A20, discs of “Shaun of the Dead” and “Hot Fuzz” … and, um, a bonus cricket bat.

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