HP's first HD DVD drive in the guise of the hd100 has gone on sale in the UK. The new external drive which connects to your PC via USB2.0 can read HD DVD-ROM, DVD±R/±RW and ±R double-layer discs, as well as CD±R/±RW and CD-ROM discs.

HP is the latest company to announce its support for Toshiba's next generation format. The hd100 can playback these HD DVD movie discs at an HD resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels.

However before you go running out to get one you'll need to make sure your PC can support it. According to HP you'll need a pretty impressive machine to run any HD content including at least a single-core 3.2GHz Pentium or an AMD 64 X2 2.2GHz in an addition to a nVidia GeForce 7600GT or ATI X1600 graphics card with the Nvidia HD drivers.

Of course you'll also need an external output that supports HDMI or HDCP-compliant DVI-D connection to get it to your TV or if you're happy to watch in on your monitor one that supports the 1920 x 1080 resolution.

If your system does fit the bill, there are over 100 HD DVD movie titles have been released by the top eight Hollywood movie studios so far.