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TVs Get Small At Infocomm

Las Vegas – Compact projectors from tiny hand-held Pico models to low-cost light weight models for institutional and corporate applications marked the dozens of new commercial and professional display offerings being showcased here at this week’s Infocomm.

Among the manufacturers presenting new professional display products were the following:

Epson showed two new series of 3LCD projectors targeting entry-level retail distribution to business and corporate environments. The PowerLite S6, featuring 2,200 lumens of brightness, 78c, with 2,200 lumens of brightness and the W6, with 2,000 lumens of brightness are positioned as entry-level models that can be used at home and work. Suggested retail pricing on the line ranges from $549 to $799.

The PowerLite 1720, 1725, 1730W, and 1735W models target corporate and business uses and feature 3,000 lumens of brightness and weigh less than four pounds. The 1720 and 1725 models offer XGA resolution and carry suggested retails of $1,299 and $1,499, respectively; and the 1730W and 1735W models offer WXGA resolution and carry suggested retails of $1,699 and $1,899, respectively.

Both lines employ Epson’s new Quick Wireless Connection USB Key for easy plug-and-play connectivity and streaming video.

Mitsubishi showed three models including the XD500U-ST projector, which is targeted at educators and presenters with limited space. The unit offers XGA-resolution (1024-by-768 pixels) and a short-throw range capable of displaying a 60-inch diagonal image placed 33-inches from the screen.

The company is also showing a wireless XGA model – XD530U – for on-the-go presenters. The unit offers 3000 lumens of brightness for use in rooms with high ambient lighting.

Mitsubishi also offered a 1080p (1920-by-1080 pixels) 3LCD home theater model – the HC5500, which carries a $2,495 suggested retail price. The projector features a new LCD panel cooling duct enabling a low-noise 19dBa noise level.

Panasonic Projector Systems unveiled a pair of 12,000 lumen three-chip DLP projectors targeting large venue placements.

The PT-DZ12000U WUXGA (1920-by-1200 pixels) and PT-D12000U SXGA (1400-by-1050 pixels) are positioned for rental and staging solutions such as, commercial digital cinema, higher education, and corporate and digital advertising customers. Both will be available in August at suggested retail prices of $69,000 and $59,000, respectively.

Both models feature built-in edge blending and a geometric adjustment feature that enables dynamic warping capability. This is used primarily for the rental and staging market to overlap multiple images in creating a single larger image for use with oversized screens.

The projectors also include a new Detail Clarity Processor that analyzes frequency characteristics of each frame and applies necessary sharpness to create natural looking images, Panasonic said.

A System Daylight View function uses an image processing circuit to compensate for the loss of color saturation that occurs when light reflects onto the screen from bright surroundings.

Each model comes equipped with a Auto Cleaning Robot function to an automatically clean the projector’s filter system, enabling about 2,000 hours of use without filter maintenance, the company said.

A liquid-cooling system directly cools the DLP chips and allows both models to be used in temperatures up to 113 degrees Fahrenheit.

Optoma introduced what it called “the first Pico projector based on the DLP Pico chipset.” The unit is small enough to fit in the palm of the hand and is positioned as a companion to ultra-portable media devices such as iPods, PDA’s, smartphones and digital cameras.

The Pico projector, which is on display at Texas Instruments’ Infocomm booth, uses light emitting diode (LED) technology to enhance color and contrast performance. It will ship first to the European and Asian markets and is slated for arrival in the U.S. in 2009, the company said.

Optoma also said it was selected by CDW for its Sapphire Partner Program to increase customer access to industry players that offer emerging technology trends, while helping CDW stay on top of product life cycles.

Sanyo, meanwhile, showed its previously reported 4LCD projector and a second-generation LCD Waterproof Monitor, model CE52SR1 (shipping in October at a $13,995 suggested retail). The 52-inch HD panel offers 1920-by-1080p resolution, is viewable in the sum and uses marine-grade construction for outdoor installations in almost any location, Sanyo said.

The weather-proof monitor is lightweight and runs cooler than similarly sized plasma monitors. It features a 1,500:1 contrast ratio and a 1,500 cd/m2 brightness level for optimal viewing in sunlit areas.

The CE52SR1 also offers the ability to combine up to 25 units (maximum 5-by-5 configuration) from a single input signal, for public display applications.

It includes a DVI-D input capable of accepting blur-free, high-speed 6.5 ms response time images using a wide range of real time video signals.

Toshiba showed four projectors including the TDP-XP1U filter-free DLP mobile model that produces 2,200 ANSI lumens of brightness, 1024-by-768 XGA native resolution and a 2,000:1 contrast ratio.

Also shown was the TDP-XP2U mobile projector, which uses DLP BrilliantColor technology. The unit produces 2,500 ANSI lumens of brightness, XGA 1024-by-768 resolution and a 2,000:1 contrast ratio. Weighing 4.8 pounds, the projector is targeted at professionals needing to take a display device on the road.

A third model, TDP-T420U ($2,679 suggested retail) is billed as a multimedia DLP projector weighing 9.5 pounds and offering 1024-by-768 resolution, 4,000 ANSI lumens of brightness and a 2,000:1 contrast ratio. The projector is said to be bright enough for use in rooms with high ambient light levels.

A filter-free design keeps damaging dust particles from collecting on imaging elements, Toshiba said.

Model TDP-TW420U ($2,919 suggested retail) is a wireless DLP projector with multi-screen functionality, allowing users to network up to four projectors from a single computer to create larger images for a variety of venue sizes. The unit is also filter-free and features 4,000 ANSI lumens of brightness, a native XGA 1024-by-768 resolution, and 2,000:1 contrast ratio.

Weighing less than 10-pounds, the projector also features Windows Vista networking capabilities and integrated wireless functionality. The TDP-TW420U can be networked and controlled remotely via a wired LAN connection, which is password protected for increased security.