Thomas J. Norton

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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jul 17, 2005 0 comments

Viewing a good movie in a darkened room is an immersive experience. The image and sound command your full attention. Nevertheless, large numbers of potential buyers avoid projectors because they don't want to watch television and video in a completely darkened room. Many are infrequent moviegoers whose reference viewing environment is a domestic space, not a darkened theater. (There's an audio equivalent to this. I know audiophiles&mdash;<I>audiophiles</I>&mdash;who prefer watching movies with mono sound because they've been watching movies on their television so long that they consider surround&mdash;or even 2-channel stereo&mdash;to be a distraction!)

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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jan 06, 2014 0 comments
Sony realizes that without 4K content, a 4k Ultra HD set isn't fully complete. There is, of course, the movie server the company has offered recently and continues to offer, with 120 movies now available for download onto it. There's also the promise, not yet in place, for downloading or streamimg 4K material from a range of Internet movie sites.

But perhaps the most interesting potential source may come from you, via Sony's new FDR-AX100 4K Handycam Camcorder. With 14-megapixel resolution, a Zeiss lens, Optical SteadyShot Image Stabilization, and more, for $2000 you can record and play back your own timeless videos, either exasperating or thrilling friends and family alike with your inner Steven Spielberg.

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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Sep 26, 2013 0 comments
The VPL-VW600ES SXRD projector is Sony’s latest 4k home theater projector. It offers a full 4096 x 2160 resolution, a claimed peak brightness of 1700 ANSI lumens, and a stated 200,000:1 contrast ratio (with Sony’s dynamic Advanced Iris 3). Its HDMI 2.0 inputs will accept 4K sources at up to 60 frames per second.
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Thomas J. Norton Posted: Mar 16, 2005 0 comments

Spring is traditionally the season when major consumer electronics manufacturers hold their annual line shows, showing new products that will be introduced during the year. With a late winter snowstorm raging in the northeast, Sony held their 2005 get-together in warm, sunny Las Vegas, Nevada, on March 8.

Thomas J. Norton Posted: Sep 28, 2012 4 comments

2D Performance
3D Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
Price: $2,600 At A Glance: Deep, uniform blacks • Superb out-of-the-box color and crisp detail • Head-tilt 3D crosstalk

The most popular, current approach to designing an LCD HDTV with LED lighting is to position the LEDs around the periphery of the screen and rely on diffusors to spread the light out uniformly. Sometimes (but not always) the brightness of the LEDs is also altered dynamically to help the LCD pixels create deep blacks, where needed.

Thomas J. Norton Posted: Jun 07, 2013 0 comments

2D Performance
3D Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
Price: $3,300 At A Glance: Rich black level and good shadow detail • New color technology • Bright, punchy 3D

The new KDL-55W900A is Sony’s newest, top-of-the-line, non-XBR set. All of the XBRs, going forward, will be Ultra HD (4K) sets, but the KDL-55W900A, as all of the KDL designs, is firmly in the standard HD, 1920 x 1080 camp. It’s an edge-lit design with local dimming, but its marquee feature has nothing to do with contrast and black levels. Color is the plot here, and Triluminos, a term Sony has used in the past (see sidebar), promises a wider color gamut.

Thomas J. Norton Posted: Mar 07, 2014 0 comments

2D Performance
3D Performance
Features
Ergonomics
Value
PRICE $3,300

AT A GLANCE
Plus
Excellent color and resolution
Good blacks and shadow detail
Satisfyingly bright 3D
Minus
Typical LCD off-axis limitations
Minor 3D flicker and ghosting

THE VERDICT
It may lack the headline-grabbing, 4K bling-zing of Sony’s XBR Ultra HD designs, but this 65-inch KDL series HDTV sits at the top of the company’s bread-and-butter line and offers more than enough features and performance to satisfy a wide range of buyers.

With all the ink spilled these days about the trendy but expensive Ultra HDTVs, a plain vanilla HDTV, with its resolution of 1920 x 1080, may seem a little ho-hum. But Ultra HD (4K, or more correctly, 3840 x 2160) is still consumer 4K content-starved with its specs not yet fully complete, and the jury is still out as to whether or not it will offer significant benefits in typical home screen sizes. Its price of admission also remains high. As a result, top-of-the-line, non-Ultra HDTVs, such as Sony’s new KDL-65W850A, remain serious players in the high-end video market.

Thomas J. Norton Posted: Apr 29, 2007 0 comments

Several years ago a major television manufacturer attempted to market an 80-inch rear projection TV. I first saw it, if I recall correctly, at our annual Home Entertainment show, then still known as the <I>Stereophile</I> show. Yes, this is a shameless plug&mdash; <A HREF="http://www.homeentertainment-expo.com/">HE 2007</A> is coming up in New York City on May 11-13!

Thomas J. Norton Posted: Mar 29, 2001 0 comments

The slow march toward that new digital broadcast standard has brought us a small but rapidly swelling flow of new DTV widescreen televisions&mdash;far better sets than anything the average consumer has ever seen before. These TVs are still very much high-end products, but despite their cost, sales are increasing at a steady rate.

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Thomas J. Norton Posted: May 30, 2004 0 comments

When Sony announced the development of a new home video projector last spring, the buzz began. Would it be the fabled Grating Light Valve technology, which the company is known to be working on? Would it be LCD, DLP, or LCoS? Would it be something completely new?

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