Toshiba has launched 10 new REGZA LCD's, highlighted by 4 high-end models, the 37- and 42-inch ZV500's and the 46- and 52-inch ZH500's. All 4 models feature 10-bit, 1080p resolution panels, 120Hz technology, x.v. Color, DeepColor, a wide 178 degree viewing angle, and both ATSC and NTSC tuners. The ZH500 models also have a 300GB internal hard disc drive, one 13W and two 10W speakers, 4 HDMI inputs, 2 USB and 3 ethernet ports, and an S-video output. The ZH500 models also both have an SD card slot, while the ZV500 models have all of the above minus the internal HDD and extra 13W speaker.The 4 high-end REGZA's are also internet-connected and Bluetooth compatible. The larger ZH500 models will be available in early May with the 46ZH500 priced at 500, 000 Yen and the 52ZH500 at 600,000 Yen. Toshiba has also released couple of lower-end REGZA lines with "basic"features-the 32-, 37-, and 42-inch RH500 line and the 32-, 37-, and 42-inch CV500 lines. All displays feature 1080p resolution with the exception of the smaller 32-inch models, and the RH500 models all feature a 300GB ESATA HDD. They also feature 120 Hz technology, both analog and digital tuners, but only the 42-inch RH500 boasts DeepColor and x.v. Color. All models also have a variety of inputs and outputs similar to the higher-end models. The CV500 series has very similar features minus the internal HDD. The 32- and 37-inch RH500's will hit the market in early June for 250, 000 and 300, 000 Yen respectively, while the 42-inch display will come in early July for 400, 000. The CV500 series has a staggered release schedule with 32-inch model hitting Japanese shelves later this month for 160, 000 Yen, the 37-inch CV500 will see a mid-may release date priced at 230, 000 Yen, while the largest 42-inch model is expected to appear in early July for 250, 000 Yen.
Dolby and Sim2 debuted a prototype 46-inch "high-dynamic-range (HDR)-enabled LCD flat-screen display" yesterday, giving us a look into the future at the next-generation of HDTV's. Using Dolby's LED local dimming technology and Sim2's backlight unit, the prototype LCD "matches real-world visual perception" and features 1838 LEDs, 1080p resolution, infinite contrast ratio, a brightness of greater than 4000 cd/m2 and 16 bits of luminescence through more than 95% of the panel.
The prototype also uses a Xilinx Virtex field programmable gate arrays (FPGAs) chipset that allows Dolby's HDR algorithms to mesh properly with Sim2's display.
Loewe's Connect 37 DR+ is a beautifully designed 37-inch LCD TV that features some seriously high-end features. With 1080p resolution and 24fps HD media playback, expect a near-perfect picture, while a built-in 160 GB hard drive eliminates the need for a set-top box altogether. You'll have plenty of integrated space to record all of your favorite TV shows. A Connect 37 model is also available minus the hard drive.
Both models feature Wi-Fi and Ethernet options for streaming video from your PC using Windows Media Player. Unfortunately, no other streaming options are available. The Connect 37 DR+ also has a Scart socket for component video, 2 HDMI slots, and RCA digital audio inputs and outputs for connecting to a home theater system. It can even display photos and play music via two USB ports.
A couple of added options available to you are purchasing the Loewe Connect without the media streamer and adding DVB-S for receiving HD satellite signals. Available in black, white, and silver the Loewe Connect 37 DR+ is priced at 2150 Pounds or US$4300. Remove the internal hard drive and you'll pay 100 Pounds less, add-on will cost you extra.
Sony will be selling a 32-inch LCD set in Wal-mart stores for $699 this spring, with a possible price decrease to $648 if a rumored Wal-mart discount is included. This is the first time Sony will sell a 32-inch set for less than $700 and is part of the electronic giant's strategy to bump mid-range Japanese brands such as Vizio and Olevia down a notch. With a slow US economy, the Bank of America is predicting that this is the first step in an all-out price war that will see LCD TV prices drop drastically. But not so fast.
All of the typical 32-inch models already sold in Wal-mart are already sold below the $699 price tag of the 720p Sony, plus LCD panel supply is going to be tight in 2008 with demand most likely exceeding supply. This doesn't bode well for lower prices. It does move Wal-mart one step closer to being a dangerous competitor to the likes of Best Buy and Circuit City, especially as the digital TV transition draws closer and people flock to upgrade to a digital set. This could mean a price war down the line, but we don't see it happening in 2008.
Most of us familiar with the internet have heard of mashups which basically just combine two services, applications or concepts to produce something new and different. Humax has taken the term mashup to a whole new realm, producing a concept LCD TV designed by UK industrial designer Tej Chauhan. The set combines a retro exterior design reminiscent of the typical curvy design from the 1950's, but boast the hardware common to the most technologically advance HDTV's on the market. Will it hit shelves anytime soon? We doubt, but by making the rounds of the world's most popular design show, the Humax retro LCD TV will make for some cool eye candy.
Pantel has two new outdoor LCD TV's available that are rain, sleet, and sun resistant, perfect for some summer high-def R&R in your backyard. Coming in 32- and 42-inch sizes, the Pantel 320 and 420 feature 1336x768 resolution, a 1600:1 contrast ratio, an RF wireless receiver that allows wireless transmission of high-def audio and video up to 150 feet and a waterproof remote control. Pantel is apparently looking at the possibility of adding some larger models to the line-up, but expect them to be pricey, as the 32-inch Pantel 320 will cost you $3, 950 and the 42-inch Pantel 420 will set you back $4, 450.
Panasonic has officially unveiled its new plasma VIERA lineup for the North American market, bringing 16 new models to shelves in the coming months. VIERA, which stands for "Visual Era" and "exceptional picture, connectivity, customer service, and satisfaction" is Panasonic's latest North American plasma brand. A rundown of the new models is after the jump...
Our UK readers may be interested in 3 new Sharp Aquos HD-ready models launching in the UK in the next few months. The Sharp Aquos D44E Series features the 37-inch LC-37D44E, the 32-inch LC-32D44E, and the 26-inch LC-26D44E all with the option of a new silver-grey color design.
Key features include 720p resolution and 10000:1 contrast ratio on all models, and a luminance of 470-500 candelas per square meter ensuring brilliant colors. Optimal image control automatically adapts screen brightness to the lighting level in the room. Automatic sound control allows you to preset sound levels depending on the content you are viewing, and is pumped through 2 10W loundspeakers via a built-in digital amplifier.
Other key features include:
* 176 degree viewing angle
* 6ms response time
* Enhanced programme overview with image-split and image-in-text functions
* Freeze-frame function to keep a favourite scene on screen
* Built-in DVB-T and analogue tuner for all-round TV reception
* 2 SCART sockets and the HDMI inputs with HDCP support
* YUV, AV/S Video IN, VGA IN and Audio OUT sockets
The 26- and 32-inch models will be available later this month for 499 and 599 Pounds respectively in either black or silver-grey. The 37-inch model will be available in July in black only, with pricing still to be confirmed.
Sony is going to be using technology used in the manufacturing of Blu-ray discs to produce an anti-glare film for LCD screens. They will be commercializing the new technology as early as 2010 in LCD TV displays, cell phones, and laptop computers.
Moth Eye uses the technology to produce a film with a series of minute bumps resulting in a redirection of light rays, reducing glare to 0.1% of visible light, about 1/30 that of LCD displays today. This improves display efficiency by a minimum of 10% allowing for enhanced color even in bright environments where LCD TV's tend to underperform.