While the next HD DVD players bearing the Toshiba nameplate may be delayed in the US & Europe, they hadn't been officially announced in Japan yet. AV Watch has the details revealed there, where the lower-end model will be called the HD-XF2, to go along with the HD-XA2 as both will launch in December. The specs appear to be the same as the players due in other parts of the world, the HD-XA2 gets an HDMI 1.3 connection and 1080p output -- deinterlaced 1080i via a Silicon Optix chip in the player itself, no native 1080p/24 here folks -- while the HD-XF2 has an old-school HDMI 1.2a connector and loses the analog 5.1 audio outputs of its predecessor in exchange for an improved slim design. The HD-XA2 is set for 110,000 yen ($934 US) while the HD-XF2 will retail for a paltry 49,800 yen ($423 US). The company also acknowledged the US delays due to an unspecified problematic third party chip, but at this point we can still expect to see the new hardware on store shelves this year. Continue on for a picture of the HD-XA2 with its casing in place and unmentionables hidden away, or to AV Watch for even more pictures.

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