New Sony Projectors

A new projector or two every year is a CEDIA tradition from Sony, and they did not disappoint us this year. The new VPL-VW85 video projector offers significantly enhanced brightness compared to the VPL-VW70 (known as the VPL-VW80 in some markets), and deep blacks courtesy of a combination of SXRD chips with superior contrast and Sony's well-established Advanced (dynamic) Iris. It also has a variety of user-selectable gamma settings, custom gamma adjustment via an external computer program, a Motion Enhancer feature operating at a 96Hz frame rate with the option of either full brightness or darkened interpolated frames, and an aspect ratio for use with an add-on anamorphic zoom lens. $8000, in October. A review of the VPL-VW85 is currently scheduled for the November 2009 issue of Home Theater. There's also a new, lower priced Sony SXRD projector, the VPL-HW15, with a claimed peak contrast ratio of 60,000:1 and 1000 ANSI lumens output at a suggested price of $3000. Also in October.