Toshiba formally announced the expansion of its DLP rear-projection and flat-panel TV lines, while continuing to support dealers with CRT direct-view offerings in the year ahead, during its dealer show, here, last week.
Scott Ramirez, Toshiba’s consumer TV marketing VP, said the microdisplay rear-projection HDTV assortment will be expanded to 11 total models under both the openly distributed TheaterWide and restricted step-up Cinema Series lines. This year, the company is also adding its first DLP models capable of 1,080p resolution. The company previously made an aborted attempt at marketed 1,080p LCoS HDTV displays.
All DLP sets feature fully integrated ATSC tuners, Digital CableCARD slots, TV Guide On Screen interactive program guides and IEEE 1394 (DTVLink) ports for connection to an optional Symbio HD Recorder model 160HD4 ($399.99, now).
Toshiba also expanded its flat-panel offerings by introducing a total of 19 plasma, LCD and LCD/DVD combo models from both the TheaterWide and Cinema Series lines, but plans for a late 2005 launch of the long-promised SED flat-panel products were postponed until 2006.
All widescreen HD flat-panel models include HDMI/HDCP inputs, and CableClear DNR video noise reduction circuitry. All fully integrated HD flat-panel TVs include a CableCARD slots, TV Guide On Screen electronic program guides and Toshiba’s new Channel Browser system.
The TheaterWide line features 15 flat-panel additions. LCD TV highlights include fully integrated HD models in the 27W-inch 27HL95 ($1,799.99, July); the 32W-inch 32HL95 ($2,499.99, July); and the 37W-inch 37HL95 ($3,499.99, July).
Other high-definition TheaterWide flat-panel models include the 20HL85 ($899.99, June); the 23W-inch 23HL85 ($1,199.99, June); and 27HL85 ($1,499.99, June) models. All offer 720p resolution. The line also includes the 20DL75 ($699.99, May) 20-inch 4:3 enhanced-definition LCD TV.
LCD/DVD combo TheaterWide models include the new 27HLV95 fully integrated HD-LCD TV and the 23HLV85 (1,399.99, July); 20HLV85 ($999.99, June); and 17HLV85 ($799.99, June) HD monitor models. All have 720p resolution with HDMI. Also offered is the 4:3 14-inch 14DLV75 ($549.99, now) combo.
New TheaterWide plasma models include the 50HP95 ($4,999.99, August) and 42HP95 ($3,499.99, August). Both feature SoundStrip Speaker Systems, which features a more compact cabinet design and improved fidelity, CableCARD slot, TV Guide On Screen, and a PC input.
Toshiba is also offering its first 480p plasma display in the Custom Series 42DPC85 ($1,999.99, September) EDTV monitor. Included is a SoundStrip speaker system for improved fidelity and compact design.
Four large-screen Cinema Series flat-panel models include the 32W-inch LCD/DVD 32HLX95 (July, $2,999.99 suggested retail); the LCD/DVD 37W-inch 37HLX95 (August, $3,999.99); the 42W-inch plasma 42HPX95 (August, $3,999.99); and the 50W-inch plasma 50HPX95 (September, $5,499.99).
All Cinema Series models offer HD resolution and feature high-gloss black bezels. The line’s 42W- and 50W-inch plasma HDTV sets include the new SoundStrip Speaker System with improved fidelity and a more compact design. Both models feature PC input, and IEEE 1394 (DTVLink) for connection to an optional Symbio HD Recorder.
Also included in Cinema Series plasma models is a proprietary THINC (Toshiba Home Interactive Network Connection) interface, which allows the panel to connect to a PC to playback MP3 files and JPEG files using the set’s remote.
The Cinema Series LCD/DVD models feature 720p HD resolution, CableCARD slots, TV Guide On-Screen, dual HDMI inputs and a PC input.
In DLP, Toshiba will offer six TheaterWide models, including three 720p and three 1,080p versions, with screen sizes ranging from 46W inches to 72W inches.
The 720p models include the 46W-inch 46HM95 ($2,499.99, July); the 52W-inch 52HM95 ($2,799.99, June); and the 62W-inch 62HM95 ($3,299.95, August). The 1,080p models include the 56W-inch 56HM195 ($3.499.99, August); the 62W-inch 62HM195 ($3,799.99, August); and the 72W-inch 72HM195 ($4,999.99, September).
Cinema Series DLP models include two 720p models in the 52W-inch 52HMX95 ($3,099.99, July) and 62W-inch 62HMX95 ($3,599.99, July), and three 1,080p models in the 56W-inch 56MX195 ($3,799.99, September); 62W-inch 62MX195 ($4,099.99, September); and 72W-inch 72MX195 ($5,299.99, October).
The 720p sets will employ a new “TALEN” Light Engine. The 1,080p sets will use the new “TALEN X” light engine with “Xtreme BLAC,” black level enhancement technology.
Both light engines also include Toshiba’s proprietary “DEEP Picture” (Digitally Enhanced Engine Performance) technology to produce sharper more vibrant images.
Sets also include PixelPure AT video processing.
Among the new features in the DLP lines is a ChannelBrowser function that lets consumers use a “back” button — similar to a PC browser back button — to quickly return to previously viewed channels. All Cinema Series DLP models also add the THINC PC networking feature.
In widescreen CRT direct view, Toshiba will have flat-screen Cinema Series HD monitor models in the 30W-inch 30HFX85 ($999.99, September) and 34W-inch 34HFX85 ($1,299.99, September).
Also offered are step-up Cinema Series versions in the 30W-inch 30HFX95 ($1,199.99, September); the 30W-inch 30HTX95 ($1,299.99, September); and 34HFX95 ($1,299.99, September).
For additional coverage on Toshiba’s video product line introductions see www.TWICE.com and the next edition of TWICE.