Neato HD Thing of the Week: New Sharp exhibit displays the power of HD in fish form

April 28, 2011 by  
Filed under Industry News

We always appreciate really cool applications of the HD medium, and this is such an example: the 5D Miracle Tour launching Friday in Japan. Read more about it from our friends at Engadget:

….this “5D” cube opening on Friday. Constructed from 156 Sharp 60-inch HD displays, the 5D Miracle Tour can only be found at Huis Ten Bosch, a “residential-style resort built after a medieval 17th-century Dutch town” located in Sasebo City, Japan. The unique attraction accommodates 32 guests at a time, and consists of one main front screen, surrounded by additional panels on the top, bottom, left and right. Lasting eight minutes, the tour presents the story of a mermaid named Sirena, though content will occasionally change — given the transient nature of mermaids, of course.

Very cool indeed….brought to you by your friends at Screen Sleuth. We’re only hoping an exhibit like this would come to US shores at one point.

New News: Sharp pushing out 3 new Blu-Ray players

March 13, 2011 by  
Filed under Product News

Sharp hasn’t been standing pat lately, as they’re jumping into the new release fray with 3 new Blu-Ray players soon to be released, with tons of the very newest features, including the much valued 3D. Read on with this section of the features from Engadget HD:

Each one is Blu-ray 3D ready with currently standard features like DLNA, Netflix, VUDU, Pandora and YouTube access built in, but are priced a step above the average deck these days. The lower end BD-HP25U lacks the included WiFi and IP control of the higher end models (dongle optional) while the BD-HP35U (pictured above) lacks only the RS-232 control port of its BD-HP75U counterpart. The BD-HP25U ($249) and BD-HP35U ($299) are shipping now while the BD-HP75U ($329) is due to arrive March 14.

Price and feature sets are fairly competitive with Sony, LG and other companies, though maybe slightly higher in terms of MSRP, so make sure you shop around if you end up considering these.

Pioneer Again: Disguised as a Sharp?

January 28, 2011 by  
Filed under Industry News, Pioneer, Sharp, TV Brands

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It seems coming back from the dead is pretty popular these days, and Pioneer is doing a reappearance once again – but as Sharp rebadged HDTV units, if reports are to be believed. We were quite sad when Pioneer closed their Kuro brand, but good news could be coming. More here:

It was a dark day when Pioneer announced its mighty Kuro HDTVs would be no more, but the Pioneer Elite brand still has significant cachet and will return in 2011 on new high end TVs. The bad news? They will be LCDs, not plasmas, manufactured by its partner Sharp, a not entirely surprising move since this was actually the original plan for the Kuro brand back in 2008. Apparently both see potential as Sharp will gain access to higher-end AV salesrooms and integrators for its products, while Pioneer will have TVs to match its continuing Pioneer Elite Blu-ray player and receiver lines. Despite an impressive local dimming demo at CES we’re still not sure Sharp can create enough new pixels to replace what we once had, but we should find out for sure when the new models arrive the end of the year.

We’re unsure if Sharp can make a TV like Pioneer could, but seeing is believing. We’ll report if the Sharp models are up to snuff.

Long Time Missing: HDTV Deals for a Tuesday

December 28, 2010 by  
Filed under Deals, Hannspree, Sharp, TV Brands, ViewSonic

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It’s been ages since we did our deals segment, so we’ll give you an extra dose of savings on HDTV goodness. Here we go:

B&H Photo Video – It’s a fact: smaller HDTV sizes are as cheap as they’ve ever been, and the Viewsonic VT2430 24” 1080p Widescreen LCD for $229.00 with free shipping is proof of that fact. Nice deal on a pretty nice unit.

Dell Home – Dell has good deals at times, such as this Sharp AQUOS LC-55LE620UT 55” LED LCD HDTV for $1799.99 – $600 instant discount from our link = $1199.99 with free shipping too. Tough to beat that, from what we’ve seen.

Walmart – Now it isn’t a top name, but the deal is exceptional: a Hannspree ST42DMSB 42″ 1080p 120Hz LCD for $449 – with free shipping? Crazy talk.

Thanks for joining us on this jumbo sized edition of deals, and have an HD day.

Super Slim HD: Ultra-Thin 3D Blu-Ray player to be released by Sharp

October 24, 2010 by  
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Speaking of the word Sharp, the design of this thing is mega-sharp: a super-thin Blu-Ray player with tons of great features, as described here:

Remember that slimmer-than-slim Blu-ray 3D / BDXL player that Sharp demonstrated at CEATEC? Looks like the world now has a ship date and price, though you aren’t likely to be keen on either. The unit itself — which measures but 35mm thick and looks eerily familiar to the slimmed-down PlayStation 2 — will tout a Blu-ray recorder while supporting BD 3D and BDXL playback, and there’s even compatibility with OTA broadcasts for those looking to toast television to blank Blu-ray media. Naturally, a contraption this awesome is going to be reserved for the Japanese market, with reports suggesting that it’ll ship anywhere between mid-December to early January. The real kicker, however, is the price — at ¥85,000 ($1,047 based on today’s exchange rate), we’re surmising that only a handful of individuals can afford to give this thing the time of day.

We imagine this will have a pretty limited market given its feature set and price combination.

Sharp Tech: New trio of HDD-armed Blu-Ray players make their appearance

September 25, 2010 by  
Filed under Industry News, Product News

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It seems the newest trend among media players is to extend beyond simply playing back media, but storing and presenting it a new way, which is Sharp’s intention with this new trio of players debuting across the globe soon (later in the US than on Asian shores). Read on:

You won’t find this trio hitting US shores anytime soon, but those situated in Japan have a new gaggle of Sharp BD decks to ogle. The BD-HDW65 and BD-HDW63 both include a pair of TV tuners, BDXL support and compatibility with Blu-ray 3D titles, with the only difference being the hard drive — there’s a 500 gigger in the former and a 320GB drive in the latter. The BD-HDS65 goes with a single digital tuner, a single analog tuner and a 500GB hard drive, which might prove useful for storing copious amounts of drama from Sky TV. You’ll also find WiFi integrated throughout, not to mention an Ethernet jack, HDMI output, component jacks and DLNA support.

Whispers are that the first two should ship next month, with the last unit going on sale in Japan mid-November; pricing is as expected, not cheap. We’re hearing ranges from ¥90,000 ($1,066) to ¥120,000 ($1,422), which moves this one into the elite category price wise.

3D Goes 4D: Sharp releases Quattron HDTVs to the US

September 23, 2010 by  
Filed under Product News, Sharp, TV Brands

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It appears Sharp is still busily engineering in their labs, and marketing directly to the states for the first time in awhile: they’re announcing the soon-to-be-released line of Quattron 3D HDTV models to the US. See more about their engineering feats here:

Sharp made US 3D fans very happy today by announcing the immediate availability of its new 52 and 60-inch AQUOS Quattron 3D TVs at CEDIA. The LED backlight side-mount scanning LE925 series starts at $4199 with the bigger brother going for $5299, feature two pairs of 3D glasses bundled in, a dynamic contrast ratio of 8,000,000:1 and IP control plus RS-232 for home automation fans. The Ethernet port or optional WiFi adapter can also be used to stream Netflix, VUDU or a variety of other over the top video services. What’s interesting is that Sharp is claiming its 4th color (yellow) Quattron technology offers a brighter image which can overcome the dimming, that 3D glasses are known for. Also, a first is that the 3D glasses can convert the 3D signal to 2D for that one 3D hatter in your party (not to be confused with the TV’s ability to convert 2D material to 3D).

We love the fancy new tech, hopefully it does well enough to be emulated in some form by other companies.

More IFA News: Sharp releases a gaggle of new LCD TVs

September 4, 2010 by  
Filed under Industry News, Product News, Sharp, TV Brands

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What is a gaggle exactly? A lot, we guess…anyway, IFA brought more nice new announcements as Sharp stepped forward with a slew of new Quattron HDTVs to be coming to an electronics store near you in the near future. We always love covering new stuff, so here’s the scoop via Engadget:

Just in case those George Takei commercials didn’t clue you in that Sharp was serious about Quattron, the company has announced four new TV lines at IFA sporting yellow as a fourth subpixel color. At the top of the list, the Quattron 3D-enabled LE925 line will be available in 60-inch or 46-inch sizes and feature Sharp’s proprietary high-speed FRED LCD signal processing technology along with side-mounted scanning LED backlighting — which like the LV Series — is touted to produce 1.8x better brightness than competing sets and reduce 3D crosstalk. Aquos Net+ connectivity is thrown in too, along with 2D-to-3D conversion, a digital triple tuner and 8GB of built-in flash memory for timeshift recording. Playing second fiddle to this overachiever are the 2D-only LE924E, LE824E and LE814E series, which will also feature Aquos Net+.

As with most products at this show, exact prices and release timeframes aren’t available. But this line promises some of the best specs on any recent HDTV releases.

Titans Clash: 3D version of Blu-Ray included in Japan with Sharp HDTVs

July 2, 2010 by  
Filed under Industry News, Product News, Sharp, TV Brands

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Critically speaking, Clash of the Titans didn’t do that great, including its blah 3D conversion, seemingly done last minute to cash in on the 3D craze in theaters at the time. But Sharp apparently thinks the 3D HD Blu-Ray version is worth including with their HDTVs in Japan. Witness this Engadget blurb:

Sharp is promoting the movie alongside the 3D editions of its Quattron LCD HDTVs and, assuming our understanding of machine translated Japanese is correct, will be tossing in a copy gratis with purchases. At least in Japan, the 2D version of the blu-ray will be released august 25, with the 3D & 2D combo pack arriving October 6.

We think bundling Blu-ray with purchases is a good idea, we just aren’t sure bundling this particular one is a good idea. But at least Sharp is getting on the ball with some cool promotional ideas, which we always like seeing.

Thursday’s HDTV Deals

June 3, 2010 by  
Filed under Deals, LG, Sharp, TV Brands

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Here is our list of fine HDTV deals for this equally fine Thursday:

Walmart has a killer deal on the LG 47LD450 47″ 1080p 60Hz LCD HDTV for $788 with free shipping too. Use the ‘Add to cart’ to see the price. For any LG, especially this size, this is a can’t miss deal. It just shows how far prices can still fall on bigger units.

TigerDirect.com – A very nice deal on a highly-regarded Sharp AQUOS LC-32LE700UN 32” 1080p 120Hz LED HDTV for $599.99 = $594.99 – with free shipping as well? Amazing indeed. This one has got raves for its picture quality.

How can you resist either of those? Both are some of the better deals we’ve ever seen on the web.

Going 3D Crazy: Sharp dives into HDTV 3D market

June 2, 2010 by  
Filed under Industry News, Product News, Sharp, TV Brands

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It appears Sharp is convinced that 3D HDTV is here to stay, because they’re set to launch of whole bunch of HDTV 3D displays in the near future. See this report courtesy of Engadget:

Next month, the fourth-largest LCD TV maker will launch a slate of new 3D TVs in Japan, just as planned. Based on the same Sharp Quattron quad-pixel technology that made George Takei’s jaw drop, the new LV-series of AQUOS panels will come in 40-, 46-, 52- and 60-inch sizes when they debut July 30th, and feature 1080p resolution, UV²A panels and a high-speed signaling technology named FRED that Sharp says increases brightness and reduces crosstalk.

Pricing has been a bit of a mystery so far, but rumors have these starting around the $3,000 US mark or so, topping at around $6K for the 60″ model. These same rumors indicate that they will cross over into other waters (US, Europe) quite soon as well, possibly by the end of the year.

Sharp Thought: DivX playback a big new feature of Quattron line of HDTVs

April 6, 2010 by  
Filed under Product News, Sharp, TV Brands

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lg-aquos-ces-rm-engApparently there was still a HDTV or two with no DivX stamp, but that should be mostly worked out now after a new deal with Sharp reached recently. The newer line of HDTVs by Sharp should be something to look out for. Good thing to put this factory to use.

The new AQUOS LE820 LCD line — incorporating the (according to published previews) amazing Quattron quad-pixel tech –can play 1080p DivX HD files from a connected USB drive, a very cool feat indeed.

Now bear in mind, this might not be quite the embedded content technology seen at CES, but DivX has proven itself a fighter in the technology arena, so don’t be shocked if it creeps into the plans of even more LCD companies in the next few years.

Sunday’s Easter HDTV Specials

April 4, 2010 by  
Filed under Deals, Samsung, Sharp, TV Brands

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S222-4202-main03-amIt’s Easter, time for bunny rabbits, marshmallow peeps and great HDTV deals. Check them out:

TigerDirect.com has a great deal on a well-regarded Plasma HDTV: the Samsung PN42C450 42” 720p Plasma HDTV for $539.99 with free shipping too. That’ll even tempt the Easter Bunny to turn in his basket and kick back for some HD joy.

Staples.com has a very nice combo unit: the Sharp LC-26DV27UT 26” LCD HDTV With DVD Player built-in for $349.99, and with free shipping as well. Brighten up anyone’s Easter with this gift!

Thanks for joining us, and may many brightly colored eggs be headed your way.

Wednesday’s HDTV Deals

March 31, 2010 by  
Filed under Deals, Panasonic, Sharp, TV Brands

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392174Yet more amazing deals we scour the internet to bring to you, so feel free to stare, gawk and generally be amazed:

Sears.com has a very nice Panasonic TC-P50C2 50” Viera 720p Plasma for $719.99 with free shipping too, and that’s a heck of a deal for a company whose specialty seems to be of the Plasma persuasion. Check it out.

PcRUSH.com has an LED wonder, the Sharp AQUOS LC-40LE700UN 40” 1080p LED HDTV for $814.96 with free shipping as well, and that’s one of the lower prices for this we’ve seen around. Great reviews, great price, no strings.

Thanks for joining us, and see you all later!

Saturday HDTV Deals ‘R Us

March 27, 2010 by  
Filed under Deals, LG, Sharp, TV Brands

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A2911752Once again, we bring you some of the best HDTV deals on the web:

Dell has a monstrous glory in the Sharp AQUOS LC65E77UM 65″ 120Hz HDTV (LCD) for $2,599 with free shipping as well. Great stats, huge size, and AQUOS brands tend to get very high ratings on image quality too. Great deal! Make sure to click to “see the sale price”.

PCConnection.com has a deal that makes me a little ill. Not because its bad, but because its pretty much the TV I bought a year and a half ago for twice this price (mine is 1080p though): The LG 42LH200C 42” 720p Widescreen LCD TV for $599.95 + small shipping charge = $621.90 out the door Shipped, which is amazing, simply put.

Thanks for joining us this fine weekend, and may you have an HD-quality day.

Saturday’s HDTV Deals

March 20, 2010 by  
Filed under Deals, Sharp, TV Brands

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0082405600240_215X215More amazing deals on this fine Saturday for your consideration:

Sears.com has the well-reviewed and well-regarded Sharp LC52LE700UN AQUOS 52” LED 1080p LCD HDTV for $1299.98 and includes free shipping too. Great deal (the best we’ve seen for this exact model, in fact).

Walmart.com has an amazing offer on their own Element ELDHW421 42” 1080p LCD HDTV for $499.00 with free in-store pickup as well. Astounding how low prices have gone, even if this isn’t a Sony or LG exactly.

Legal News: Dell sues 5 companies over LCD price-fixing

March 16, 2010 by  
Filed under Industry News

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dell-logoLooks like Dell is jumping into the legal ring, and many in the industry are celebrating the PC giant’s guts, even if they’re predicting it will be a long battle with few real victors. We’ve covered court related joy before here at SS, but this one may be huge.

The company has filed a lawsuit in a San Francisco court today against four LCD makers – Sharp, Hitachi, Toshiba, and Seiko Epson – and Taiwan-based HannStar as well. The crime they’re accusing the companies of, you may ask? The much-chronicled, much-discussed and reviled LCD price fixing scandal.

At least two of the companies mentioned (Sharp and Hitachi) have already come out and admitted involvement and paid fines in other cases, so it doesn’t appear they have a big defense really. We’ll keep an eye on this as it develops.

War Over: Samsung and Sharp end LCD patent battle

February 8, 2010 by  
Filed under Industry News

8-7-07-sharp_samsungAfter three years of legal wranglings, court hearings, injunctions, etc, Sharp and Samsung have settled their LCD patent battle – finally, to the relief of both companies, we’re certain. Yes, their lawyers might not be as relieved, we know.

Although the terms of the agreement will be kept secret and under wraps, a Sharp spokesman stated that conditions that “will be in favor of Sharp” — the company that started the fuse burning in 2007. It seems Samsung has suffered a string of small legal defeats in various markets of late, so were left with little choice but to settle really.

The patent covered LCD filings in the US, Europe and Japan, among other hot spots. It’ll be interesting to see how this settled case affects both companies and their strategies going forward.

Big News at CES (Literally): Sharp announces a new 60″ LCD HDTV model

January 10, 2010 by  
Filed under Product News, Sharp, TV Brands

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Sharp-AQUOS-LC-60E88UN-1Sharp has gotten into the HDTV game at the latest CES by showing off their latest and greatest upcoming unit, the ‘LC-60E88UN’. It’s gigantic, energy-sipping, and has lots of advances for smooth action pics.

You start off with a huge 60″ screen, and if that isn’t enough, it includes Sharp’s X-Gen panel technology with 240Hz Fine Motion circuitry for a smooth picture with action-oriented entertainment content like movies and sports.

And your electric bill will appreciate the advances too; the unit will be ENERGY STAR 4.0 standard compatible and feature a range of ports built-in, including 4 HDMI and a component connection. It’ll be released in February, and price hasn’t been released yet. Expect around $3-4K or so, in our estimation.

HD Pie: Sony grabs a piece of new Sharp LCD manufacturing plant

December 30, 2009 by  
Filed under Industry News, Sharp, Sony, TV Brands

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sakaiimage015As planned and reported among insider HDTV blogs and mags, Sony has grabbed up a small piece of Sharp‘s new 10g LCD plant built a year or so ago, which should allow Sony to grow its manufacturing muscle for LCD panels quite a bit in the next few years.

For now its small piece only equates to about 7%, but will jump to 34% by April 2011 or so, and other companies are expected to bid for space in the highly-regarded plant over the coming year or so, so expect a good number of HDTV units to originate from the Sakai City facility.

Companies rumored to bid on a piece of the pie: Samsung and Panasonic, as well as possibly LG. Times are good for HDTV companies (and consumers), indeed.

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