Sony Projects a High Def Bargain

Sony took the lens caps off of two new front home theater projector bargains last week.

The new Bravia VPL-AW15 ($1,300) and VPL-AW10 ($1,000) projectors are 3LCD models with 1280 x 720 resolution. Each includes a 165-watt Ultra High Pressure lamp (said to produce 1,100 lumens), a short focal-length lens with 1.6 times zoom, and a cooling system with fan noise as low as 20 dB.

The less-expensive VPL-AW10 uses Sony's Advance Iris which Sony claims provides a contrast ratio of 6,000:1. For $300 more, the VPL-AW15 includes Sony's Advanced Iris 2 that is supposed to generate a contrast ratio of 12,000:1. The VPL-AW15 also has lens shift capability.

Both projectors sport an HDMI input for sources up to 1080/24p, which is then downscaled to 720/24p. Other connectivity includes RS-232C, component, composite, and S-video. The VPL-AW15 also has an HD-15 input for use with computers.

Sony says the new projectors will be available in June.

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