Posts Tagged ‘4K’

While 4K may make little sense on a tiny television screen, on a projector? Yes, please. Hearing these pleas is JVC, which has dropped not one but three consumer projectors with a 4K-like picture. Prices start at $4,999.

The three consumer models are the DLA-X900R ($11,999), the DLA-X700R ($7,999), and the DLA-X500R ($4,999), which include a new D-ILA device, 4K inputs, e-shift upscaling for 1080p-and-lower sources, and a user-selectable Intelligent Lens Aperture.

The projectors, which according to JVC aren’t technically 4K, use a system called “e-shift” which splits all incoming signals and spits them out to two 1080p panels. The image is then combined using “pixel shift” to emulate a 4K image.

JVC claims the Intelligent Lens Aperture produces deeper blacks while maintaining white levels and is “superior to what’s delivered by competing projectors using a dynamic iris”. The projectors feature an automated lens shift with memory presets for easier setup.

Of most interest is the entry-level DLA-X500R, which is the cheapest (pseudo) 4K projector we’ve seen so far, and half the expected price of the Sony 500ES. It features a 60,000:1 native contrast ratio thanks to a new Clear Black feature that provides local area contrast enhancement.

Pushing contrast levels even further are the DLA-X900R and DLA-X700R capable of 150,000:1 and 120,000:1 ratios, respectively.
The DLA-X900R and the DLA-X700R feature active 3D compatibility with THX 3D certification. The DLA-X900R ships with a 3D transmitter and two pairs of glasses.The new JVC D-ILA home theater projectors will be available November, and meanwhile the excellent 1080p DLA-X35 will stay in the range through 2014.

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The Philips 9000 Series is Philips’ first foray into Ultra High Definition television, unveiled at technology show IFA 2013 in Berlin.

There are two UHD TVs in the 9000 range: a 65-inch model and 84-inch model, both displaying 3,840 x 2,160 pixels of eye-popping detail.

Both TVs are LED-backlit and have three-sided Ambilight, which projects light from three sides of the TV to complement the colours on the screen. The 65-inch model boasts a 15W speaker and two 6W speakers, while the 84-inch version pumps out sound from two 25W speakers and two 20W speakers.

4K is still very much in its infancy, so there’s very little actual 4K stuff to watch in eye-frazzling detail. So the 9000 TVs attempt to improve on the detail of high definition films and TV by upscaling Blu-ray, DVD or HD TV channels.

One way you can see the eye-popping detail of which the TV is capable is with photographs. Photographs taken by even today’s average compact cameras and camera phones pack in way more detail than HD video, so you can view photos of 8-megapixels or more in stunningly crisp detail.

Which means you’ve just paid five grand for a photo frame.

You can also connect to the Web and access apps and online services such as Netflix, YouTube and Skype alongside Philips’ usual smart TV features, as well as Miracast and SimplyShare to connect to your phone and tablet.

And the 4K TVs also do 3D, because nobody demanded it. Like most high-end TVs today, the Philips 4K models can convert regular two-dimensional films and TV to 3D.And the price? The new Philips models are more expensive than Sony and Samsung models already on the market: the 65-inch 65PFL9708 costs 4,999 euros, and the 84-inch 84PFL9708 will set you back 14,999 euros.

The Z1 handset with the QX100 lens attached weighs 349g (12.3oz)

Sony has confirmed plans to sell two stand-alone lenses that connect to smartphones by wi-fi, allowing them to take higher-quality photos.

The devices are compatible with Android and iOS handsets and mark the creation of a new product category.

The Japanese company announced the products alongside a new smartphone which features a 20.7 megapixel camera and a larger-than-normal image sensor.

The launches should help the firm challenge Nokia’s top-end handset.

The Finnish company – which is in the process of being taken over by Microsoft – unveiled the Lumia 1020 in July. Reviews have suggested that it has the best smartphone camera on the market, but were critical of its price,

Sony told the BBC it would target its Z1 handset at a wider audience than what it called the Lumia 1020’s “super-premium category”.

It confirmed details of the devices at the Ifa consumer tech show in Berlin – much of the information had already leaked via tech news sites.

One analyst suggested the lenses in particular would struggle to find buyers.

“The concept is interesting, but when you think about using it, will users want to carry them around?” asked Francisco Jeronimo, mobile devices research manager at tech consultancy IDC.

“The problem is that for those wanting top-quality photographs, the experience of having a DSLR [digital single lens reflex] offers a better experience than a phone with an add-on camera.

“Meanwhile having the lens attached to a phone makes it feel quite bulky compared to a compact camera or stand-alone handset.

“If the lenses were priced under £100, then I could see photography geeks buying it, or operators bundling it with the phone, but these lenses will be quite expensive.”

Sony itself acknowledged that it did not know how strong demand would be.

“Always we’re discussing: ‘How many pieces should we prepare,'” Yosuke Aoki, a digital imaging spokesman for the firm, told the BBC.

“We’re waiting for after the Ifa announcement to see what the feedback will be to the models.”

Making a statement

Sony is bundling movies and games with the Z1 to help it compete

The QX10 lens offers a 10x optical zoom and 18.2MP resolution which Sony says makes it ideal for taking shots of distant landmarks or close-ups of people. It will cost about £170,

The QX100 features a smaller 3.6x zoom but a bigger sensor with a resolution of 20.2MP. Its aperture goes as wide as f1.8 – allowing more light in – meaning it should be more adept at taking photos in low light or with a very shallow focus. It also offers manual focus as an option which is not possible on the other lens. It will cost about £380.

Once fitted with a battery and memory stick, the QX10 weighs 105g (3.7oz) and the QX100 179g (6.3oz).

Both devices:

  • include technology that compensates for shaky hands
  • activate a link-up to a phone or tablet if it has an NFC (near field communication) chip
  • can attach to different-sized handsets via an extendable clip, or – in the case of the Z1 – using a special case
  • can be operated while a short distance away from the smart device

Neither:

  • has a built-in screen.

Sony Mobile’s head of sales and marketing said they were intended to send a message to consumers, including those who would never buy them.

“It’s a statement as one piece of many things that are starting to come together under the umbrella of Sony,” said Dennis van Schie.

“The PlayStation 4 is coming out. In 4K [ultra-high resolution] TVs, we’re the leader – from the formats to the cameras to recording capabilities [that will appear] quite soon in mobile.

“Now we’re the first ones to dare to create a lens-type camera with a new kind of user interface. It contributes to what Sony is standing for.”

Sony posted a 3.5bn yen ($35m, £23m) profit in the April-to-June quarter, reversing a 24.6bn yen loss the previous year.

Stronger sales of smartphones helped achieve the turnaround.

However, IDC says the firm still only had a 4.1% share of global smartphone shipments over the three months, putting it behind Samsung, Apple, LG, Lenovo, Huawei and ZTE.

Additional value

Nokia has boasted that its Lumia 1020 with a 41MP sensor is the best smartphone camera on the market

Sony is hoping the new water-resistant Z1 handset will help it boost that figure.

It says the device features an exclusive sensor which is the same size as that found in its Cybershot cameras.

It also features new software including the ability to provide live video streams to Facebook, and Info-eye – an app that provides information about books, wine and landmarks among other objects the phone is pointed at.

The company is also taking advantage of its other assets to help the device stand out from the Android crowd. UK shoppers are promised five Sony movie downloads and a selection of free PlayStation mobile games.

“They’ve done quite a good job of differentiating the phone,” said Mr Jeronimo.

“That’s what operators want – to be able to provide additional value from what Sony offers.”That’s why they are looking at Sony as a better prospect for the future than other vendors like Blackberry and HTC.”