CES 2011- Toshiba TVs
Toshiba is hedging their bets in the active vs passive debate. Most of the other display manufactures are coming down firmly on one side or the other. Toshiba announced, but did not show, Natural 3D, their entry into the passive 3D realm. The Cinema Series, though, is active 3D.
More interestingly, they had 56 and 65-inch auto-stereoscopic (glasses-free) 3D displays in the booth.
All the info after the jump.
The TL515 Series are passive 3D displays under the Natural 3D moniker. The line is aimed at “families and gamers,” and will be positioned as an entry-level 3D product. They’re LED lit LCDs, and have local dimming and 240 Hz Clear Scan. Sizes will be 32, 42, 47, 55, and 65-inches, and are shipping in March 2011.
The UL610 Cinema Series active 3D displays have Fine Local Dimming, and 480 Hz Clear Scan. Sizes will be 46, 55, and 65-inches, and most will be available in April.
Skipping the tiny LED displays, the least expensive serious LED LCDs are the SL412 Series. All feature 1080p and ClearFrame 120 Hz (on all but the 40-inch). Sizes are 40, 46, and 55-inches and will be available in March.
The SL417 Series has ClearFrame 120 Hz, built-in WiFi, and Toshiba’s NetTV Internet streaming interface. Sizes will be 42, 46, and 55-inches, all available next month.
At the lower end of the price scale are the CCFL-based LCDs. The E210 is a 60 Hz, 1080p model, the G310 is a 46-inch 55-incher.
No pricing for anything.
While other manufacturers showed tiny auto-stereoscopic displays, Toshiba had running 56 and 65-inch models. I have to say, I was really impressed with how well they worked. As long as you stood in the few spaces (marked on the floor), the 3D effect was decent. Move to either side, and the effect was replaced with a wonky image.
Resolution is 4k by 2k, or 4,096 by 2,160 pixels. The total number of viewing areas hasn’t been announced, though it has been confirmed that each viewing position will have over a million pixels (roughly half full-HD resolution). So… 4,096 x 2,160 = 8,847,360 / 1mil-ish = 8 viewing positions? More than most families, less than most parties? Ok.
Before everyone runs out, or more accurately, doesn’t run out, with glasses-free 3D, there are a few things to mention. There was noticeable horizontal lines on the 56, and vertical lines on the 65. Not a deal breaker, but certainly not the smooth image we’ve become used to. If 3D is your thing, active 3D is a vastly better looking image than this proto auto-stereoscopic. But the proto is watchable, but the picture quality is a step behind. The price you pay for a lack of glasses.
Also cool was an auto-stereoscopic laptop that tracked your eyes. Close one eye, and it goes 2D.
Toshiba claims that the auto-stereoscopic 3D TVs will be available by year’s end, though further questioning reveals they mean their fiscal year’s end, which would be March 2012. With the endless promises and eventual disappointment of SED (admittedly, not really Toshiba’s fault), we’ll believe this timeline if they have model numbers or pricing by CEDIA in September.
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