As far as the format war goes, file this under "Inevitable."

In a story from Video Business, Venturer Electronics will be releasing a "Chinese-manufactured HD-DVD player" for the fourth quarter.

Called the SHD7000 the new unit "will be priced at $199, according to a company representative, which would make it the cheapest stand-alone HD-DVD player available today."

Thus far the cheapest HD-DVD unit has come from Toshiba at a cost of $299.

The spec breakdown for the SHD7000 is as follows: It "features 1080i video output, Ethernet connectivity and advanced audio technology Dolby TrueHD. In addition to HD DVD and CD playback, the model also upconverts standard-definition DVDs to near high-def quality through an HDMI connection. The player will be distributed nationally to retailers."

Cinemark Movie Club
Evan Jacobs