This story from Tomshardware reports that Toshiba's new HD DVD player uses an old energy-guzzling Pentium 4m CPU instead of a low power Pentium M chip. The Pentium 4m can waste an additional 60 watts of power while operating and that can add up to some serious electric bills considering people often forget to turn off their DVD player. High Definition video has very heavy computing requirements and requires a high performance Pentium 4 processor in the 2.4+ GHz range or a Pentium M in the 1.5+ GHz range.
Considering the cost of the new HD DVD player at $500 and $800, a newer low-power chip would probably raise Toshiba's cost per unit by $100. Eating the cost would be out of the question and raising the cost of the player may knock it out of that $500 range. The problem with using the cheaper Pentium 4m chip is that the Player would run hotter, louder (from the cooling fan), and probably cost an extra $10 a month in electricity if the unit stays on for prolonged periods of time. Keeping the initial cost of the new HD DVD player low is important, but at what price and ergonomics over time?