Home-Theatre seem to be constantly evolving, there seems to be a revolution every other year and this year is no different. This years revolution is the 4K resolution revolution. At this weeks IFA show Sony has been demonstrating the brand new VW1000ES rear projector. Capable of displaying pictures using 4096 x 2048 pixel resolution this is the first consumer projector capable of the Hi-Vision standard. At an estimated $25,000 USD this won’t be the number one selling projector in the world but it will be a milestone in the evolution of the moving picture.
“Sony continues to push the boundaries of high resolution video from the lens to the living room,” said Mike Abary, senior vice president of Sony Electronics’ Home Division. “In similar fashion to our industry leading 4K Digital Cinema projectors, our new VPL-VW1000ES 4K home theatre projector has been created to not just meet but exceed the needs of the most discerning and demanding home entertainment enthusiasts. It will allow them to become totally involved in the viewing experience and much closer to the action on the biggest home theatre screens, with images that deliver considerably more detail and fewer artefacts.”
Sony’s new projector is a monster amongst projectors. Sony has developed a new LCD panel to produce the picture for projection, the brand new SXRD 4K panel with outstanding deep blacks and when combined with Sony’s Iris3 technology the projector can achieve an incredible 1,000,000:1 dynamic contrast. The 4096 x 2160 resolution provides an 8 mega-pixel display – 8,847,360 pixels -. Sony has also enhanced the projector brightness over previous generations, over twice the brightness according to Sony. Rated at 2,000 lumens the numbers do stack up as well, in fact it packs enough light punch to throw up to a 200 inch image. The projector includes a 4k upscaler that will apparently lift your Blu-ray collection to new heights. All of the standard board room and home theatre interfaces are included, control over IP, RS232 interfaces, transmitters, compatibility with the leading home automation systems and 3D of course.
Sony is attempting to established the new 4k standard as part of the Blu-ray consortium. This would be an excellent avenue for the limited 4k content Sony has created. There are already 60 films that have been shot in 4k digital using Sony’s own 4k cameras and recording equipment of course. With the right compression a 4k film could fit onto a dual layer Blu-ray disk -50GB -, Sony is attempting to establish the 4k standard with backwards compatibility in mind, if this can be achieved then even 1080P Hi-Def will benefit from the extra detail. The 4k Standard literally a true theatre at home as it uses the same resolution used by many theatres at the moment. In the next few years 4k resolution will establish itself as the new standard, if this can be done through the Blu-ray consortium then it should be a fairly painless evolution.
As technology rolls on the standards that going along with it must adapt and evolve to take advantge of the advancements. The new 4k standard will take a couple of years to be finalised and incorporated but it will be well worth the wait. Higher resolution increases picture detail, making sharper and clearer images. but it also has the side effect of giving a much larger desktop to work with when a computer is connected to the projector, 4 web pages open side by side, nice.
Sony has set the new benchmark for rear projectors, the VPL-VW1000ES has the brightness, contrast and resolution to rank ammoungst the best consumer projectors available. Sony is quoting an RRP of $30,000 USD but estimates are putting the final RRP at closer to $25,000 USD. The projector will ship in December becoming the first 4k display available to consumers.
More information at Sony Press Release
- 4096 x 2048, 8-megapixel
- 2,000 ANSI lumens
- 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio
- Projected screen size up to 200 inches
- 4K upscaler to boost existing 1080p content to 4k
- dual triggers, wireless and RS232 interfaces
- control over IP