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Styling, Fixed-Pixel Designs Dominate CES TVs

Television manufacturers traveling to CES continue to push new display devices optimized for the increasing HDTV source material expected from broadcasters this year, while flat-screen picture tubes continue to proliferate in both digital and analog set designs.

But one of the biggest trends at CES 2002 will be adoption of DLP display engines for both front- and rear-projection digital-ready televisions. Texas Instruments, which invented the system, will showcase products from its many partners here this week, and announcements were expected of much more aggressively priced models.

The following is a glance at some of the many new television announcements expected at the show:

Daewoo will unveil a slate of digital television products it expects to ship to retail during the second quarter of 2002.

The DSC-34W70N 34W-inch 16:9 PureFlat HDTV direct-view monitor features a built-in Dolby Pro-Logic audio system, and two HD component video inputs, for $1,995.

Daewoo will present the 50W-inch DSP-5010GM plasma display panel with 720p-display capability at 1280x720p resolution. It ships in the second quarter at $12,995. The DSJ-6000LW 60W-inch LCD-based rear-projection monitor features 720p HDTV resolution at a 16:9 widescreen aspect ratio. It is slated for the second quarter at $6,995.

Fujitsu will unveil its largest screen plasma display monitors to date, in a pair of 61W-inch 16:9 PlasmaVision SlimScreen displays. These include the PDS-6002, which is aimed at the home theater market, and the companion PDS-6001 for commercial applications. Both incorporate Fujitsu’s proprietary AVM (Advanced Video Movement) digital processor, which reduces motion artifacts and flicker, improves vertical resolution and reproduces natural movement.

In addition the company said it would debut the PDS-4233 and PDS-4229 42W-inch PlasmaVision monitors for consumer and commercial use, respectively, both of which have been upgraded from previous versions to offer enhanced picture quality at an under-$10,000 retail price.

JVC will unveil its first digital CRT-based rear-projection sets, which will become part of the new I’ART Pro TV series. The line will debut with two models in the 48W-inch (AV-48WP30) and 56W-inch (AV-56WP30) 16:9 screen sizes. They are expected to see street retails of around $2,000 and $2,400, respectively, when they ship in early March. Both feature natural progressive line doubling, JVC’s Natural Cinema 3/2 pull-down video processing, BBE sound enhancement and dual NTSC-tuner PIP with split screen and one main with three picture-out-of-picture commands. Both will include DVI digital interfaces for use with future set-up boxes.

Marantz will show plasma display panels, including the PD4293D ($9,999), which is a 42W-inch 16:9 model with higher brightness and contrast (1500:1) levels than last year’s model. Included is a proprietary video scaling system called Advanced Mass Area Progressive Scan with 3:2 pull down. The company will unveil a pair of HDTV level rear-projection monitors. The PV6111W ($4,999 suggested retail) is a CRT-based 61W-inch 16:9 model incorporating an HD contrast enhancer, 30MHz color purity processor, a Digital Double Format Converter (DDFC) that transfers conventional broadcasts to the 480 progressive scan format and then further converts them to 1080i images.

An HDTV grade DLP-based rear projection monitor (model DL5500) will be shown. This model offers a 55W-inch 16:9 screen size and resolution of 1280 x 720 pixels. It will carry a $15,999 suggested retail price.

Philips will expand its DTV lineup in 2002 to nearly 30 models, with a wider selection of widescreen displays. Philips will highlight its proprietary Pixel Plus technology that is to be featured in two flagship 16:9 direct-view monitors in the Philips MatchLine series. The proprietary video resolution algorithm, which is said to transform standard definition images into video pictures resembling HDTV, will debut in the 30W-inch (30PW9818) and 34W-inch (34PW9818) screen sizes.

Pixel Plus adds both horizontal and vertical resolution to produce a pixel structure four times higher than standard video displays. The televisions include RealFlat picture tubes and have updated silver cabinet styling.

The DTV rear-projection line will offer slimmer titanium cabinet styling, with Microperf grills. Screen sizes will include 43-, 50- and 60-inches in the 4:3 aspect ratio, and 46W-, 55W- and 60W-inch in 16:9.

Philips will expand the plasma TV line with a 32W-inch screen size. All new plasma models incorporate a smaller, thinner chassis and optional add-on “e-box” that includes an audio system and jack pack with a DVI interface. Resolution on the 32W-inch model is listed at 1024×852, while new 42W-inch PDPs offer 1024×1024 HD resolution.

Sampo, which planned special showings in the Hilton, will unveil the SME-34WHDG 34W-inch 16:9 direct view HDTV monitor. It is capable of native 720p, 1080i and XGA HDTV resolution, and includes MotionDSC digital video processing. Also slated is the SME-32HD6 32-inch 4:3 progressive HDTV monitor.

In plasma displays, the company will offer the PME-42XG 42W-inch HDTV-level monitor, with 1024×1024 pixel resolution using the ALIS display method. It includes a MotionDSC digital video processor with adaptive motion de-interlacing and digital progressive line scaling. Connections include dual HD component video inputs, RS-232, DVI for PC applications and high quality RGB video inputs and outputs.

Samsung will introduce four plasma display panels from Samsung’s PDP factory. Screen sizes will range from 42W-inches to 63W-inches, and feature one 42W-inch standard definition model (SPL4225, $5,999) and two HDTV models in the 50W-inch HPL5025 ($12,999) and the 63W-inch HPL6315 (pricing to be announced). All have composite, component, S-video and RGB inputs, and will be available in the first quarter of 2002.

Twelve CRT-based rear-projection TVs are slated in screen sizes ranging from 42W-inches to 65W-inches. Nine have widescreen 16:9 aspect ratios. Within the line is a picture enhancement system called “RealFlect,” which adds 15 percent brighter and clearer images.

HDTV monitors in 4:3 screens include the 62-inch PCM-6215R ($2.699) and 54-inch PCM-5415R ($2,199).

Samsung’s 16:9, 1080i HDTV monitor lineup includes the 55W-inch HCM-5515W ($2,699) and 47W-inch HCM-4715W ($2,199) models, which feature RealFlect, Perfect Focus and a 30-watt audio system. A 42W-inch HDTV set, the HCM-4215W ($1,999) adds a screen aging upgrade.

Samsung’s step-up Tantus line features two 16:9, integrated 1080i sets with 45-watt sound systems, center channel, Dolby Pro-Logic audio, 2-Tuner PIP with side by side split screen, and a Samsung Digital ProChip scan converter. Both the 65W-inch HCM-658W ($4,499) and the 55W-inch HCM-558W ($3,999) will be available in the fourth quarter of 2002.

The DynaFlat flat-screen HDTV direct view monitor line will expand with six 4:3 models and three 30W-inch 16:9 widescreen models. The 27-inch 4:3 TXM2796HF ($899) and 32-inch 4:3 TXM3296HF ($1,299) both ship in May. Step-up models include the 27-inch 4:3 TXM2797HF ($999) and 32-inch TXM3297HF ($1,399), which add 3/2 pull-down progressive scan upconversion and 30-watt sound system with BBE technology. A 30W-inch 16:9 widescreen version, model XM3097WHF, is priced at $1,399.

Slated for June are the 27-inch 4:3 TXM2798HF ($1,099), the 32-inch 4:3 TXM3298HF ($1,599) and 30W-inch 16:9 TXM3098WHF ($1,599) HD-level DynaFlats, with enhanced audio systems. The sets will be available at $1,099 for the 27-inch model and $1,599 for both the 30-inch widescreen and 32-inch models.

The top of the line HD DynaFlat is the 30W-inch TSL3099WHF ($2,199, May) which adds a slimmer cabinet, HD component video inputs, dual NTSC tuners and advanced tension mask.

Sharp will unveil HDTV-level plasma display televisions in the 50W-inch (PZ50HV2U) and 43W-inch (PZ-43HV2U) 16:9 screen sizes. Models boast high brightness and contrast (830:1) performance. In addition, the models incorporate dual NTSC analog tuners, component video and PC input/outputs. Model PZ-50HV2U will be available this month at $14,999 suggested retail price. The PZ-43HV2U will ship in March at $12,999.

Thomson will showcase its RCA Scenium 61W-inch integrated rear-projection HDTV set, incorporating the Microsoft Windows CE operating system. It adds both the DVI-HDTV and IEEE-1394 digital interface connections for HD cable and satellite programming. The Windows CE operating system, combined with an Ethernet connection, provides for present and future digital home networking applications such as broadband web processing (including Internet browsers) and product software upgrades.

Zenith will show an expanded line of fully integrated HDTV sets, which is to include the 64W-inch, 56W-inch and 61W-inch screen sizes in CRT-based rear-projection models. In direct-view CRT the 34W-inch 16:9, and 36-inch and 32-inch 4:3 screen sizes will be featured. The HDTV sets are slated for a mid-year delivery at prices to be announced. The integrated direct view models are the first for Zenith, and all include flat-faced screens and industrial design cosmetics.

Zenith’s HDTV monitor lineup will add a 43W-inch CRT rear-projection set.

The company will showcase an expanded assortment of plasma display panels (PDPs), which goes from two to four models this year with the addition of the 42W-inch and 50W-inch screen sizes.