Yes it's true--Mitsubishi still has a number of rear projection sets on retail shelves. This year Mitsub's offerings have been overshadowed by its LaserVue laser TV line becoming available, but the company's 65-inch WD-65835 Diamond RPTV recently came under review at Home Theater Mag and did pretty well. While it did have a few issues with video processing and resolution clarity at maximum HD output, it nullifies these problems with superb color, excellent contrast and crisp blacks--especially for an RPTV. That said, if you're looking for something a little bigger heading into the New Year, the WD-65835 Diamond looks to be a solid buy. It's currently in high demand at Amazon where it's priced at $2, 399--probably the cheapest you'll find it anywhere.
Sharp has launched the PG-F255W wide-XGA DLP projector. Built for enterprise applications, the PG-F255W has DLP BrilliantColor technology, can project 720p from HD sources, and 1280 x 720 16:10 resolution from PC's. It's fairly bright at 2500 lumens and has a 2200:1 contrast ratio so it's likely that the PG-F255W displays a fairly crisp picture, further enhanced by an extended color palette from previous models.
The 6.4 pound DLP projector also sports an ultra-quiet fan, an on-screen guide to aid in setup, closed captioning, and an included wireless remote with a built-in screen pointer. Available sometime this month, Sharp's PG-F255W will be priced south of $1000. Check out the full release after the cut.
While you won't be able to mount a DLP HDTV on your wall, $600 in cost savings may be a worthy sacrifice. According to HD Guru, his sources claim that Sunday, November 23, Samsung will be slashing the retail prices of its 2008 rear-projection sets up to $600! Sites such as Amazon already undercut retail prices by around $500, so if you're willing to forgo an LCD or plasma set of the same size you'll likely walk away with $1000 in your pocket.
NEC will be launching a couple of new DLP data projectors November 12. The NP62J pushes out 3000 lumens of brightness and 220 Watts, the NP52J 2600 lumens and 200 Watts, and both have a contrast ratio of 1600:1. Both models share most features including the exterior design, 1024 x 768 resolution, an efficient cooling fan and pump, BrilliantColor technology, 1.2x manual or autofocus zoom lens, and a maximum noise output of 37 decibels. The defining feature of the new projector is Bluetooth connectivity enabling mobile phones to stream JPEG / PNG / BMP / GIF pictures to the screen. The same can also be done with an included USB cable.
The Japanese translation of the product release isn't so clear about connection options. It appears that both units have composite and s-video inputs, while the NP62J also has an analog RGB output, but we're not completely sure of that. Each unit also appears to have a 0.3 Watt mono speaker output.
The NP62J will be priced at 333, 900 yen (US$3510) while the NP52J will cost a slightly less 281, 400 yen (US$2957). As you can see from the currencies, these two NEC newbies will see an initial launch in Japan.
The new Carl Zeiss powerdomeVELVET planetarium projector puts all projectors to shame. Designed for use in planetarium's (duh!) and other setups that require full dome projection the powerdomeVELVET utilizes Texas Instruments' DLP technology to produce an internal 30-bit color depth and a sick 2, 500, 000:1 contrast ratio. Of course, absolute blacks are needed in a planetarium to render recreations of distant stars visible. We don't even want to know how much this new Carl Zeiss masterpiece will cost, but expect expensive when it hits the shelves of Best Buy in early 2009.
SIM2's high-end but high-priced projectors are among the best on the market and the new DOMINO D60 DLP front projector is no exception. Oh, but wait, it is. Because at $4995, SIM2 has finally introduced a projector into the sub-$5000 category reaching a whole new group of potential customers with their amazing projection technology.
The D60 features a Texas Instruments DarkChip3 0.95-inch DMD chipset with BrilliantColor and Dynamic Black technologies, enabling a wide range of colors, greater than 10000:1 contrast and full 1080p imagery projection. Depending on what you're projecting, the D60 has three preset modes-Cinema, Dynamic, and Standard-and three customizable memories that can be calibrated for three more specific projection environments. Available in a Black Shadow matte finish, the SIM2 D60 sports dual HDMI inputs, component, RGB-HD, vertical lens shift, variable Iris, and a 50-200 inch picture size. Apparently the DOMINO D60 is now shipping, although a quick look at their website yields no info regarding this projector.
The folks over at CrunchGear managed to get their hands on the newest prototype of Texas Instruments' DLP pico projector, crammed into a stripped down Blackberry Curve. Despite the fact the Curve was gutted, the newest rendition of the DLP Pico is the smallest yet, less than half the size of previous prototypes.
Projector's can display images on curved surfaces? Run on water? No way. But wait, yes they can. Just ask Panasonic whose PT-D12000 and PT-DZ12000 get a big checkmark on both counts. Both projectors can display images on curved surfaces thanks to dedicated LSI. Unlike other models that display on curved surfaces, the new Panasonic models require no extra external components. Believe it or not the PT-DZ12000 is cooled by water too. Not entirely surprising given some of the projectors' heat-generating specs. Both projectors run on three DLP chips, and feature four 300 W built-in lamps resulting in a combined 12, 000 lumen brightness rating. Amazingly the PT-DZ12000 features 1920 x 1200 resolution and can project a massive 600-inch image from a minimum distance of only 12.4 meters. Both projectors are looking at an August release, both carrying a rather large $69, 000 price tag.
Rear-projection TV's may not be too hot for living room use these days, but when it comes to DLP cubes, they're all the rage. Check out the Planar Clarity Margay II DLP Cube, display at InfoComm 2008. It features 8 50-inch DLP rear projection displays, 2 across and 4 down, each 1920 x 1080 pixels, displaying a total pixel count of 3840 x 4320. All of the screens work in tandem with one another and the displays are close enough together so the edges don't irritate the eyes. Look for these DLP cubes to feature prominently in commercial displays.
The only hope the movie theater has of existing in any fashion in the future is to go 3D in our opinion, and Dolby Laboratories is making that a whole lot easier with their Dolby 3D Digital Cinema technology. The technology enables cinema operators to use standard white screens to playback both 2D and 3D films when using DLP projectors, nixing the need for separate and expensive silver screens. Now they've announced a new Dolby 3D playback compatibility program that'll simplify and standardize the technical requirements for digital cinema manufacturers. Dolby 3D technology uses dual channel, real-time color correction technology, and to be Dolby compatible servers/projectors will be tested for their accuracy in this area. XDC's CineStore Solo G3 server line has been the first to receive approval from Dolby.