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Picture This: Display Trends at NAB 2008

May 1, 2008 12:00 PM, By Jeff Sauer

3D and digital technologies had a strong presence at the show.

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Among other new products, Sony introduced the rugged 52in. 1029x1080 GXD L52H1 LCD at NAB Show 2008.</

Among other new products, Sony introduced the rugged 52in. 1029x1080 GXD L52H1 LCD at NAB Show 2008.

Is this the year of 3D in the professional display world? Probably not, but several manufacturers were showing 3D-capable consumer displays at CES in January, and this year's NAB Show had the biggest smattering of 3D to date.

Admittedly, 3D really did not appear at NAB in the form of display products, but it's clear the industry is looking forward to what comes after HD. That begins with several content-creation companies — such as Autodesk, Maxon, Vizrt, and Quantel — all showing advances in 3D animation and creation as well as the NAB Content Theater highlighting 3D content all week in screenings. However, Cine-tal was also highlighting the processing power of its new Davio portable HD and DI processing system, which includes 3D stereo processing. Cine-tal also announced that it was working with Dolby to develop image-processing technology for Dolby 3D Digital Cinema.

But not surprisingly, given the focus of NAB, most of the display news comes from products designed for image-quality evaluation in studios and control rooms — mostly in the form of production- and mastering-quality LCD panels.


Following its major Trimaster breakthrough last year, Sony added a new 42in. Trimaster to last year's 23in. BVM-L230 series of professional LCDs. The BVM-L420 shares much the same feature set as the L230 — with a native 1920×1080 resolution, LED backlights, and 10-bit image processing for telecine and color grading. While Sony offered no formal pricing information, the L420 is expected to be priced proportionally higher than the $25,000 23in. L230, in the $35,000-to-$40,000 range, when it ships later this year.

Sony also has a new rugged 52in., 1029×1080 native LCD, the GXD-L52H1 ($6,800), designed for either indoor or outdoor public signage with a field-replaceable, tamper-resistant, glass-and-aluminum chassis.

And Sony offered a possible glimpse of the future with two other demonstrations. With the over-the-top interest in the higher-than-HD resolution Red Digital Cinema Red One camera, Sony showed a technology demonstration of a possible QFHD 3840×2160 LCD Trimaster. It was really four L230s working together behind a piece of glass, but it looked quite stunning with native 4K content.

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