Sony KDS-R70XBR2 RPTV: Short Take

  • Price: $7800
  • Technology: Three-chip SXRD
  • Resolution: 1920x1080 native
  • Size: 70"
  • Inputs: N/A
  • Feature Highlights: Three HDMI inputs including a front panel input, CableCARD HD tuner, Cinema Black Pro dynamic iris, WEGA Engine video processing, detachable side speakers

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This set is part of Sony's second generation lineup of XBR-class SXRD displays. Although it's not cheap at $7800, this is a far cry from the $13K required to take home the original 70" SXRD RPTV, the Qualia 006. And this set has a newer, smaller SXRD chip (for better fill factor), and a dynamic iris. The flagship XBR series' separate themselves from the A2000 series with the addition of a front panel HDMI input, detachable speakers, and a CableCARD HD tuner. This set also includes 1080p input capability. And since SXRD is a three-chip technology, there's no color wheel, just smooth, continuous color with no rainbows.

This set was on display at HE 2006, and even under show conditions it looked, big, bright and righteous. A pre-production Sony BDP-S1 Blu-ray Disc player was the source, with a continuous loop of clips from Sony Pictures movies. While other details aren't known, we were allegedly seeing 1080p from the player to the display. Although this is certainly a short exposure under less than ideal conditions, the images I saw definitely reminded me of the Qualia 006, which I was fortunate to have reviewed over a year ago. I looked at this set at HE 2006 with a discerning colleague and fellow ISF calibrator and video reviewer. We're both used to seeing good sets look piss poor at trade shows, and we were both surprised at how much there was to ogle at and how little there was to criticize. Available this fall.

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