Mitsubishi's Diamond 3D prototype was being shown on an 107-inch wide, 2.1 gain Draper screen. Without the 3D glasses in place, the image was very bright. With them on, it was unacceptably dim. More work is still underway on this design (including the 3D glasses; Panasonic glasses were used in the demo). Photo courtesy of Scot Wilkinson of www.ultimateavmag.com.
NuVision was demonstrating its P2, LED-illuminated, 2D single-chip DLP projector on an 87" wide, Stewart Studiotek 130 screen. Using 0.95-inch DLP chip, or DMD, it was more than satisfyingly bright and punchy, though I did note what appeared to be a slightly too vivid color balance and (perhaps) minor gamma issues. $17,000. The anamorphic lens shown in the photo is an extra cost option, and was not used in the demo.
With a flourish that says Scandinavia, Runco has introduced Copenhagen Design, a new Danish-flavored style to be incorporated into a number of its new products. But as always, the important story for us was the tech, not the look, and Runco has obviously been busy in the lab this year.
Epson has become well known as a major producer of high quality, relatively affordable LCD projectors. Now, using its expertise as a premier imaging chip producer, it has produced an offshoot of LCOS, which differs in that it grows the active elements onto quartz rather than silicon. The result is a reflective LCD, or in Epson's words, RHTPS, for Reflective High Temperature Polysilicate.
Digital Projection offers so many models it's hard to keep them straight. They range in price from around $5000 to the sky's the limit, and include 3D designs, LED-lit models, and much more. The only common thread is that they are all DLPs, both single-chip and 3-chip. Most important, however, is the high quality we've consistently seen from them on the screen, both at shows such as this one and in our own in-house evaluations.
Yes, it's only 2-channel, but the new Classe CP-800 preamp may be a taste of the future for such devices. Scheduled to ship in January 2010 for under $6000, it incorporates digital inputs, including coaxial, optical, and USB (asynchronous with proprietary clocking, a significant feature for us audio propeller heads), with on-board D/A conversion. Full support for Apple's transportable iProducts is also included. There are analog inputs as well, which can be set up for direct analog pass-through analog sourcesor even as a pass through for the front channels of a full surround system. The outputs can even be programmed to drive one or more subwoofers, together with bass management and parametric EQ. The subs can be set up to operate on some inputs but not others. Both remote control and a graphical user interface with a touchscreen are part of the package.
The Sharp 3D projector mentioned in our report on Wednesday's press conference was on demonstration on the show floor. Within the limits of the available animated material, in this case Despicable Me, it looked amazingly good. At a projected price of around $5000, give or take, it's one of the least expensive 3D projectors we've seen so far. And with a 250W UHP lamp, it was also plenty bright, at least in 3D terms, on an 87" wide, Stewart Studiotek 130 screen.