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InfoComm Video Trend Spotting

Jul 3, 2007 11:51 AM, By Jeff Sauer

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In the erstwhile days of the great Projection Shoot-Out, InfoComm was always a show about projection—the latest models; increasing brightness and decreasing weight. That's changed a bit in recent years as miniaturization has slowed and lamplight has been pushed to extremes, but it didn't stop InfoComm 2007 from offering several interesting projection announcements that set the stage for continued growth.

One of the biggest stories from this year's InfoComm wasn't about products per se, but rather technology that will beget future products. Both JVC and Texas Instruments introduced new small form-factor chipsets that will enable much smaller projectors in their respective classes.

First, JVC showed a prototype of the new 4K2K D-ILA (LCoS-based) chip that boasts a native resolution of 4096x2400. Yet at 1.27in. (diagonal), JVC's 4K2K is roughly 20 percent smaller than Sony's 1.55in. 4K SRXD chip (also an LCoS technology), and therefore less expensive to produce. The smaller size and lower cost should enable JVC, and potentially OEM customers, to make high-resolution "4K" projection available to a much wider variety of vertical markets, such as simulation, medical, virtual reality, oil exploration, product design, and more. Increased competition from multiple 4K projectors in the marketplace could also dramatically boost digital cinema installations.

Texas Instruments (TI), on the other hand, argues that digital cinema is doing just fine with 1080p resolution and 3-chip DLP imaging, and TI's newest solution, the new DLP 0.7in. XGA 3 chip, should expand the reach of 3-chip DLP into new markets. Thanks to the color accuracy on a 3-imager solution and the high lumens and high contrast typical of DLP, 3-chip DLP projectors now dominate much of the larger venue and digital cinema markets. The new smaller, more affordable chip form factor will enable manufactures to build smaller, medium-sized installation projectors using 3-chip technology. Sharp Electronics showed the first implementation of that 0.7in. XGA 3 chip at InfoComm. It was only a prototype, but the XG-P610X is expected to produce 6000 lumens and a contrast ratio of 2000:1 in a medium installation-sized chassis….

For a more detailed rundown of Jeff Sauer's observations about InfoComm 2007's video trends and developments, see his Picture This column in the upcoming July issue of Sound & Video Contractor.

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