DisplayHDR Spec Helps Clarify HDR Performance Levels

December 11th, 2017 · 2160p, 4K Flat Panel, 4K Front Projection, 4K LED LCD, Calibration, gaming monitors, HDMI, HDR, LCD Flat Panel, LED LCD Flat Panels, News, Test Equipment, UHD 4K OLED, UHDTV

VESA Certified DisplayHDR brand logo representing the entry  level of HDR system performance for PC displays.

The Video Electronics Standards Association (VESA) revealed Monday what it is calling the industry’s “first fully open standard specifying high dynamic range (HDR) quality, including luminance, color gamut, bit depth and rise time, through the release of a test specification.”

The new VESA High-Performance Monitor and Display Compliance Test Specification (DisplayHDR) is initially positioned at laptop and desktop PC displays and monitors that use liquid crystal display (LCD) panels.

The first release of the specification, which is called DisplayHDR version 1.0, establishes three distinct levels of HDR system performance to facilitate adoption of HDR in the PC market.

HDR provides better contrast and color accuracy as well as more vibrant colors compared to Standard Dynamic Range (SDR) displays, and is gaining interest for a wide range of applications, including movie viewing, gaming, and creation of photo and video content.

Read more about the VESA DisplayHDR test specification after the jump:

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Google Kicks Off `Home Max’ Speaker Launch

December 11th, 2017 · AI Voice Powered Digital Assistants, Audio, Home Automation, intelligent assistant, News, voice command, voice control, Wireless Audio

 

Google launched Monday its new Home Max speaker with Google Assistant technology, designed to provide a bigger sound experience and intelligent “smart sound” acoustic adjustments.

The Google Home Max speaker is available now primarily online through Best Buy, Walmart and the Google Store at a $399 retail price. It is slated to roll out to other retail locations, including Verizon stores, shortly.

Not surprisingly, rival Amazon had not listed the speaker Monday. Amazon has not carried any of Google’s Home Assistant products as it pushes adoption of its own family of Alexa-powered speakers and devices equipped with far field mic input.

Read more about the retail launch of the Google Home Max speaker after the jump:

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Amazon Pre-Holiday Deals Continue On Select OLED, LED TVs

December 8th, 2017 · 2160p, 4K Flat Panel, 4K LED LCD, Amazon, Connected TVs, Full Array LED Backlit with Local Dimming, Full HD 1080p, HDMI, HDR, LCD Flat Panel, LED LCD Flat Panels, LG Electronics, News, OLED, OLED, UHD 4K OLED

LG’s OLED55C7P is available now for $1,696.99

Time is rapidly running out to get a pre-Holiday deal on a new 2017 4K Ultra HDTV in time for a special gift to someone else, or to yourself.

Most of the major manufacturers have products available that are still flashing promotional discounts.

Among those offers are several of LG’s 2017 4K OLED TV models, providing some of the best black levels in the market.

Sony’s TVs are also being advertised with savings as high as 30 percent off the regular selling price.

We’ve selected a few favorites available on Amazon right after the jump. Click the links to get the latest deals on these great models:
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Inkjet-Printed OLED TV Manufacturing Comes One Step Closer

December 7th, 2017 · 2160p, 4K Flat Panel, LG Electronics, News, OLED, OLED, UHD 4K OLED, UHDTV

 

The first organic light-emitting diode (OLED) display panels produced using an inkjet process for sale commercially were introduced this week by Japan-based JOLED with initial shipments reportedly headed to Sony for use in medical monitors.

According to reports out of Japan, the delivery marks the first commercial release of inkjet produced OLED displays, and is an indication that television-sized OLED panels made with the process eventually will be coming to increase volume and reduce TV-sized OLED panel prices, potentially by as much as 30-40 percent.

JOLED is a company that was established in 2014 through a merger of the OLED development operations of Panasonic and Sony. However, high debt loads and slumping profitability forced both companies to sell off portions of their holdings in the operation to Japan Display, which recently declined to take on a planned majority position in the company.

As a result, JOLED is looking for $900 million in funding to advance its inkjet OLED mass production efforts, according to reports out of Japan.

Read more on JOLED’s first inkjet 4K OLED panel shipment after the jump:

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New TI DLP Chipsets To Bring Wider Range Of 4K Projectors

December 6th, 2017 · 2160p, 4K Front Projection, DLP, Front Projection, front projectors, laser projectors, News, portable projectors, short-throw projectors, UHDTV

 

Texas Instruments (TI) revealed Tuesday that it has developed a series of new DLP chips based on its previously introduced DLP660TE digital micromirror device to deliver 4K Ultra HD to new applications, including pico-class (mini) projectors.

The company said it has produced two new 4K DLP chipsets — the DLP470TP and the DLP470TE — that are smaller than the popular DLP660TE chipset currently used in 4K DLP home theater projectors under several brands. The new chipsets can be adapted to a variety of applications including home theater, commercial/education and mobile uses.

Increasing the 4K DLP chipset family is expected to give projector manufacturers the ability to offer a wider range of products at different sizes, brightness levels and price points.

Read more about TI’s new 4K DLP micromirror device chipsets after the jump:

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Canon Adds Trio Of High-Performance FHD Camcorders

December 5th, 2017 · Digital Camera/Camcorder, Digital Cameras, Full HD 1080p, HDMI

The Canon XA15 Compact Full-HD Camcorder

Canon launched Tuesday three new compact and lightweight Full HD  camcorders built for action — the Canon XA15, XA11 and VIXIA HF G21, each of which is targeting a broad range of consumer and professional uses in the field.

The Canon XA15 ($1,899 suggested retail), XA11 ($1,399) and VIXIA HF G21 ($999) Full HD camcorders are all scheduled to be available at the end of December 2017.

All three models are said to include “first-class optics,” and a 20x 26.8mm-576mm optical zoom lens designed to let videopgraphers capture a variety of scenes high quality. Canon combines in each model a powerful HD CMOS sensor and the company’s DIGIC DV4 image processing platform, capable of rendering high quality low-light shots in 1080/60p at 35 Mbps.

Read more about Canon’s new ultra-compact camcorders after the jump:

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Review: Samsung UN65MU9000 4K UHD LED-LCD TV Is Respectable Mid-Range Option

December 4th, 2017 · 2160p, 4K Flat Panel, 4K LED LCD, Calibration, Connected TVs, electronic program guides, HDMI, HDR, HDR10+, LCD Flat Panel, LED LCD Flat Panels, UHDTV, voice command, voice control

 

For those who can’t swing the money for one of Samsung’s 2017 QLED 4K Ultra HDTVs, the company provides some mid-range 4K/HDR TVs that offer a respectable comprise.

One strong example is the Samsung UN65MU9000 we have reviewed here.

The MU9000 series is the first step down from the vaunted QLED (quantum dot) 4K television tier, and despite the QD omission, it does a nice job of presenting colors and deep black levels for an edge-lit LED-LCD TV. In fact, in some areas, it outperformed the black level isolation in darkroom conditions of the top-of-the line Q9F series we reviewed at the start of the year.

What We Liked

Deep uniform black levels with minimal light bleed-through from neighboring zones in dark rooms.

Wide color gamut exceeds the DCI-P3 color space premium 4K TV recommendations

Above average shadow detail

Very low lag times for 4K/HDR and FHD/1080p games, great with XBOX One X

Clear images with good depth qualities.

Reduced screen glare.

Strong upconversion of HD content, and acceptable processing of standard def (DVD) content.

Advanced smart TV interface from Tizen platform, controls other components, provides easy setup and access to a library of the most popular and advanced streaming apps.

Up-scale design produces one of the best-looking televisions in this price class.

What Could Be Better

HDR peak brightness doesn’t reach 1,000 nits; and ramps down very quickly. 

HDR specular highlights are visible but weaker than QLED models.

Some faint color banding issues, despite 10-bit panel.

Suffers some from typical LCD off-angle color and contrast degradation.

Sound is average and should be supplemented with a soundbar or surround sound speaker package.

No support for Dolby Vision.

The 65-inch Samsung UN65MU9000 ($1,797.99 as this was posted) and its 75- and 55-inch sister models are flat-screen edge-lit 4K Ultra HD LED-LCD TVs. We found the 65-inch test model to have a reasonable price for the screen size and one of the better overall pictures in the upper mid-range of 4K Ultra HD/HDR TVs. But it is up against some strong competition from Sony in the price class.

Read more of our review of the Samsung UN65MU9000 after the jump:

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P&F USA Launches Philips-Branded Roku TV Line For North America

November 30th, 2017 · Connected TVs, electronic program guides, Full HD 1080p, LCD Flat Panel, LED LCD Flat Panels, Live OTT services, News, OTT services, search and recommendation, Skinny TV services, Streaming Services, Surround Sound, voice control

For those looking for a more traditional and affordable Full HD 1080p TV with a simple yet robust smart TV system built-in, P&F USA, which licenses the Philips brand for AV products in North America, just introduced a line of Full HD LED-LCD TVs based on the popular Roku 8 TV operating system that delivers a user-friendly menu and huge library of streaming entertainment apps.

The new generation Roku TVs are positioned as video displays that can help consumers who are looking to cut the cord to cable and satellite TV services, or to supplement those services with a huge library of easy-to-navigate streaming entertainment apps.

The company launched Thursday the Philips Roku TV 4000 series of Full HD 1080p LED-LCD TVs encompassing three screen sizes – 40- ($349), 43- ($379, availability date to be announced) and 50-inches ($429, available starting in January). The first model — the 40-inch class 40PFL4662/F7 is available now in Sam’s Clubs stores and will be offered online shortly at Samsclub.com, P&F USA stated.

Roku TVs are marketed primarily in North America under a number of partner brands including TCL, Hisense, Insignia, Hitachi, Element and others, and have been gaining significant market share based on their typically affordable prices, easy-to-navigate and use menu of the more than 5,000 streaming apps, including all of the most popular services, and generally good picture quality.

Shoppers may know Funai, the parent company of P&F USA, as the long-time Japan-based manufacturer of affordable high-value AV electronics products sold over the years under the: Funai, Symphonic, Magnavox and more recently, Sanyo brands, some of which are licensed and others owned by the company.

In recent years, Funai has had exclusive marketing and distribution rights to the Philips brand for TVs, TV audio equipment and Blu-ray Disc players in North America. Philips TVs sold in other international markets are made and marketed by China-based TPV, which primarily uses the Android TV platform for smart TVs.

Read more about the new Philips Roku TVs for North America after the jump:

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