The Absolute Latest in HDTVs

  • What a Concept: Pioneer Project KURO
    This 50in concept high-definition flat screen has what Pioneer says is an infinite contrast ratio -- which means, if it's true, that the display shows only absolute blacks and emits no measurable light. In other words, you can say good-bye to the glow normally visible from your powered-on TV even when the screen is blank. When this set is displaying images, the picture is richer and the colours are more accurate, says Pioneer. Unfortunately, since it's only a concept now, there's no telling when it will darken your home entertainment centre.

  • Panasonic's New LCD Size: 37 inches
    In addition to this 37-incher, the LZ800 line includes a 32-inch model. These 1080p Viera LCD HDTVs also offer SD Card slots in their frames and a Game Mode setting. New to the Viera lineup is what Panasonic calls Viera Link, which lets viewers use one remote to control all HDMI-connected input devices (including Blu-ray players and home-theater components).

  • Sharp's D64 Series of LCD TVs
    Each new Sharp Aquos LCD TV sports ethernet ports for accessing Internet content such as weather, news, high-resolution artwork, and other Web content. The D64 series is available in 42in (US$2000), 46in (US$2400), 52in (US$3300), and 65in (US$9000) screen sizes. The sets feature a dynamic contrast ratio of 10,000:1, 1080p resolution, 176 degrees of viewing angle, three HDMI 1.3 inputs, and a PC input.

  • Sharp Gaming LCD TVs
    Sharp's 1080p Gaming LCD TVs are designed for use with PCs and game consoles. These 32in displays feature a smaller footprint, a swivel stand for flexible viewing of games, and a bottom-mounted speaker. The sets each have a resolution of 1080p, three HDMI 1.3 inputs, and a PC connection. Available in black, red, and white, these HDTVs run about $1600 and are on shelves now.

  • Toshiba's REGZA XV540 Series of LCDs
    Gamers and sports fans should like this LCD HDTV series. Each display has a 120Hz refresh rate, 1080p resolution, four HDMI 1.3 inputs, and Deep Colour for producing dark blacks. The company is releasing 42in, 46in, and 52in models; priced from US$1700 to US$2900.

  • LG's Superslim 60in Plasma TV
    LG's Full HD (1080p) PG60 plasma series delivers a high-quality home entertainment experience in 50- and 60in (shown here) screen sizes. The HDTVs have a 30,000:1 contrast ratio, a panel that the company says is rated for approximately 30 years, and four HDMI 1.3 inputs, as well as Deep Colour, USB 2.0, and A/V inputs.

  • Toshiba's REGZA RV530 Series
    These LCD sets seem designed for home-theater use. Each HDTV in the series has 1080p resolution, a 15,000:1 contrast ratio, and four HDMI inputs. The displays have a two-tone design with a glossy black bezel. They will range in size from 32 inches to 52 inches. Pricing ranges from US$1100 for the 32iner to US$2700 for the 52in set.

  • Panasonic Adds 46in Plasmas
    Panasonic introduced a brand-new size to its Viera line of HDTVs for 2008. The 46in TH-46PZ800 offers 1080p resolution and a built-in SD Card slot in its bezel for playing videos and viewing photos without the need for a connected device or player. Panasonic is also touting the new Viera line's 20,000:1 native contrast ratio and Game Mode, which the company says decreases frame-by-frame lag time. The 46-incher joins the 42in, 50in, and 58in sets in the THX Certified Display PZ800 line of plasmas.

  • Vizio's SV Series of LCD HDTVs
    This new LCD TV series from Vizio has a sleeker look than previous models have, mostly due to the slimmer bezel. The sets feature a 120-Hz refresh rate, 1080p resolution, and four HDMI 1.3 ports. The new SV series will be available in 42in and 47in versions for US$1500 and US$1900, respectively.

  • OLED
    Sony's newly announced XEL-1 OLED (Organic Light Emitting Diode) television is available for sale in Sony Style stores, effective immediately. The TV is the first OLED television to ship in North America. The impressively thin, 11in set has an angled, articulating arm that's attached to a base, and the unit's depth is just 3mm. Its OLED technology delivers deep blacks, a 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio, accurate colours and details, and a bright picture--all with no backlight and lower-than-typical power consumption.
    --Greg Adler and the PCW CES Team

  • Mitsubishi's Laser TV
    Mitsubishi did not announce any sets at CES. The company did, however, discuss its new laser TV technology, which it showed in a prototype. Because lasers are the purest light form that humans can see, Mitsubishi says, laser TV produces colours so incredibly vivid that the picture is above and beyond all current HDTV standards. No specifications for the TVs are out yet.

  • Samsung's DLP Sets: Big, Green, and Well Connected
    Though DLP TVs are not as skinny as LCDs or plasmas are, they have other virtues. Samsung's Series 6 (shown here) and Series 7 DLP models feature support for USB 2.0 as well as the HDMI 1.3-CEC (Consumer Electronics Control) spec, which allows compliant consumer electronics to communicate directly with one another. Series 6 sets will be available in sizes ranging from 50 to 72 inches. The Series 7 displays, with LED lighting, are available in 61- and 67in versions that Samsung touts as exceptionally environmentally conscious, consuming about half the power of a 60in plasma set.

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