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Projectiondesign’s Avielo Expands Customizable Projector Lineup

One year into the launch of its Avielo home-theater projector brand, Projectiondesign is refocusing its distribution partners, has expanded its product lineup to include models priced from $7,000 to $70,000 and has added some of the first models to include LED-lighting technology.

The company recently demonstrated some of its latest offerings at the recent 2009 CEDIA Expo, and underscored its quality-first marketing direction that will deliberately limit its dealer network to a select few trained professionals who can sell, service and support the high-margined product line.

“It was a challenging year to launch the brand, but we’ve made excellent progress,” said Scott Varner, Avielo by Projectiondesign regional sales director, adding that the business Avielo has enjoyed has come both from stepping up customers from more basic projector brands and by taking business away from established premium home-theater projector competitors.

Varner said the company’s core advantage is that Projectiondesign “is the primary manufacturer — we design, engineer, manufacture, do the software, support. We do everything ourselves. We also are the only manufacturer that designs products in the configurable nature that we do, where we can take one light engine and apply a variety of lamps, apertures, resolutions, lenses and have a wide variety of solutions from the same light engine.”

Gary Plavin, president projectiondesign LLC (Americas), said the company builds approximately 450 variations of a projector based on four core light engine types to address different applications in the home-theater setting.

Therefore, the company’s distribution strategy has been focused on supplying “the least number of dealers in a given area to provide value-added, high-quality support,” Plavin said. He estimated that Avielo currently serves “just under 100 dealers.”

Qualified dealers must go through a thorough training program to ensure that the end-user receives the level of performance the company designs its products to achieve, Plavin explained.

The company’s strategy is to offer customized products built to order based on dealer specifications using just-in-time manufacturing practices.

Plavin pointed out that Projectiondesign is the manufacturer of video projectors for a wide range of commercial and professional audiences and applications. Prior to last year, it carried a range of home theater products marketed under the Action-brand, but in switching to Avielo by Projectiondesign the company expanded its staff and product assortment to better address the demands of the high-end home theater market.

The company’s flagship product is the Helios ($69,995 suggested retail, with lenses ranging from $4,600 to $7,600) 3-chip 1080p DLP projector that features two 330-watt UHP lamps that can be operated in single- or dual-lamp modes according to light output requirements of the room.

The projector is sold with one of five lens options installed, and all include a motorized iris.

The Helios features an internal optical filter that can expand the set’s color gamut to beyond that of the HDTV standard, and the unit’s self-calibration design simplifies the setup process.

For color clarity, Philips’ VIDI technology is used in the projector to modulate the pulse rate of the lamps to match the timing of the micro mirrors in the DLP chip. Video processing is handled by a Pixelworks 9800 chip.

At the CEDIA Expo the company demonstrated its first projector based on an LED light engine. Called the Kroma ($35,000 suggested retail), the single-chip 1080p DLP projector uses Avielo’s ReaLED technology, which is said to offer an operating life of 100,000 hours while using less power than traditional UHP-based projectors. Brightness is rated at 600 lumens.

Inputs include HDMI, DVI, component video and RGB. Control ports include RS-232 and IR. Seven different lens options will be available.

Other products in the line include the Prisma and Realscope 720p models; the Quantum, Spectra and Radiance 1080p models; and the Optix single-chip 1080p dual-lamp model.