Apex Digital Expands Into Direct View, Projection TV

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Apex Digital, the Ontario, Calif.-based vendor of aggressively priced DVD players, announced it has expanded into a multi-step television line including rear projection HDTV models.

The company has begun to sell direct view sets manufactured by China's Changhong, said Gary Bennett, formerly of Hitachi, who is now Apex Digital's sales VP. He also announced that Apex has a partnership with ADO, a manufacturer of Liquid Crystal on Silicon (LCoS) light engines, to produce LCoS rear projection HDTV sets later in the year.

The direct-view television assortment will include standard, stereo, and flat-tube series televisions. Bennett indicated all would be sold at aggressive price points – the same tactic the company used to build a market leadership position in DVD video players in its first year.

A standard series television line includes four models in the 13-, 20-, 25- and 27-inch screen sizes.

The stereo series includes three models in the 20-, 25-inch and 27-inch screen sizes.

The promotional four-model GT Series line adds pure flat picture tubes in the 20-, 24-, 27- and 32-inch screen sizes.

The step-up GT series offers premium pure flat tubes in the 20-, 24-, 27- and 32-inch screen sizes.

Bennett said Apex would soon branch out into a line of rear-projection sets including a 50W-inch DTV model using a LCoS light engine from new partner ADO. The monitor will include three JVC .7-inch silicon chips, will measure 18-inches deep and will weigh 83 pounds.

Bennett said "Apex will be a major factor in the digital projection television business."

He said the company is also planning to offer two CRT-based rear-projection HDTV monitors in the 55W-inch and 65W-inch 16:9 screen sizes. Both will display the 1080I, 720p and 480p formats natively, and will feature 3:2 pull down processing on film-based signal sources.

Also slated is a fully integrated 27-inch 4:3 digital EDTV with a native 480p display which will sell for a $799 suggested retail.

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