Toshiba didn't want to adopt Blu-ray any more than the UK wants to adopt the Euro. But while our impenetrable economic skin has so far shielded us from the threat of the standard European currency, Toshiba hasn't fared so well. In fact you could say that it's looking rather tender.

Sorry, that was uncalled for. Anyway, Toshiba's doing Blu-ray now and it's got its first standalone player -- the BDX2000 -- on show here at IFA. We just planted our gaze down upon it, poked it with a stick and can confirm it is, in fact, real. 

Features include support for BD-Live Profile 2.0's Ethernet-happy features, DTS-HD Master Audio Essential and Dolby TrueHD audio formats, 1080p/24p playback, and it'll upscale DVDs, play DivX video files, and there's a built-in card reader so you can play MP3 and WMA audio files. 

It's an alright-looking piece of hi-def kit as well, with a panel on the front that folds down to reveal an LCD display and the disc tray. For those of you with compatible Toshiba TVs, you can pair the two devices via Regza-Link.

But now, some opinion from our own home cinema expert, Ian 'I'm-going-on-a-honeymoon-during-IFA' Morris. A devoted supporter of Toshiba's HD DVD format until its dying day, it's his belief that Toshiba's entry into the Blu-ray world is ultimately futile. "We just don't need another generic Blu-ray player," he said in an article back in July that we just went to read again. "The one thing the world really could use is better non-disc-based entertainment."

With those insights in mind, the unveiling of the BDX2000 has certainly made him entertainingly cross, and we anticipate we'll see record numbers of frown lines on his face when he's sent one to review. Expect to read that before the player launches in the UK towards the end of the year.

Until then, check out another photo over the page, or learn more about Ian's opinion of Toshiba's move into Blu-ray here.

The BDX2000 with its flap, erm, flapped open.

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