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Toshiba Debuts REGZA TVs

Toshiba used its dealer show here to take the wraps off its first LCD TVs to wear the new REGZA sub-brand denoting high-picture performance.

Twelve models will bear the REGZA trademark, which is short for Real Experience Guaranteed by Amazing Architecture. Toshiba is promoting the sub-brand, which is similar to approaches used with Sharp’s AQUOS and Sony’s BRAVIA sub-brands, in a global advertising and promotional effort. In the United States the campaign will feature national print ads, literature, point-of-purchase materials and Internet advertising.

The REGZA term is used on all flat-panel LCD models incorporating the company’s proprietary “PixelPure Hi-Bit” 12-bit digital video-processing system and “CineSpeed” fast response time system, which at 8ms or less on many models is said to be 33 percent faster than previous models.

Toshiba’s 2006/07 TV line includes 20 LCD TVs, including the new REGZA models, 13 direct-view CRT TVs, two high-definition plasma TVs and nine DLP rear-projection TVs — including some of the company’s first models to employ Texas Instruments’ new 1,920 by 1,080p Digital Micromirror Device (DMD) chip.

The REGZA series will include screen sizes ranging from 26W inches to 47W inches, and will be positioned under various distribution series including the open TheaterWide and protected step-up Cinema Series, said Scott Ramirez, Toshiba television marketing VP.

The company will offer REGZA models in five levels, including REGZA, REGZA LCDVD, REGZA XHD, Cinema Series REGZA LCD and Cinema Series REGZA XHD. Top-of the-line REGZA units bear the “XHD” designation to indicate 1,920 by 1,080p resolution capability.

All REGZA models offer 176-degree viewing angles, ATSC/QAM digital tuning, jack packs with PC and HDMI inputs, and black and sliver cabinet designs.

REGZA XHD models feature 1,080p full HD resolution and a CableCARD slot, TV Guide On Screen program guide, dual HDMI inputs, “HD Window” picture-out-of-picture function and Toshiba’s “Native Mode 1,080p,” which turns off scaling or over-scanning processes.

Cinema Series REGZA models feature special high-gloss black finish cosmetics with SoundStrip speaker technology for reduced cabinet size, and a ColorMaster color management system which provides hue, saturation and brightness control of six individual colors. A new six-item home theater remote control is also included.

REGZA HD LCD TVs include the 26W-inch 26HL66 ($1,199.99 suggested retail, available now), the 32w-inch 32HL66 ($1,599.99, available now) and the 37W-inch 37HL66 ($2,199.99, shipping in August).

REGZA LCDVD models include the 26W-inch 26HLV66 ($1,299.99, shipping in June); the 32W-inch 32HLV66 ($1,699.99, shipping in June); and the 37W-inch 37HLV66 ($2,299.99, shipping in July).

A REGZA XHD (1,080p) model, 42HL196, will feature a 42W-inch screen size ($2,999.99, shipping in July).

Cinema Series REGZA models will include the 37LX96 ($2,599.99, shipping in July); the REGZA XHD (1,080p) 42LX196 ($3,299.99, shipping in July); and 47W-inch 47LX196 ($4,499.99, shipping in August).

Other LCD TV highlights in the new line include a specially crafted kitchen unit, called “RealSteel,” that features a 20W-inch high-definition screen and stainless-steel cabinet designed to match stainless-steel kitchen appliances.

New 16:9 20W-inch HD LCD TV units include the RealSteel 20HLK86 ($799.99, shipping in July) and the white 20HL86 ($699.99, July).

Toshiba will also offer a custom series of high-definition LCD TV monitors that omit tuners in the 26W-inch 26HLC56 ($1,099.99, August); the 32W-inch 32HLC56 ($1,399.99, July); and the 37W-inch 37HLC56 ($1,999.99, July).