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It’s now one of the marquee consumer electronics events and this year, the CEDIA Expo once again delivered.
Unlike prior years in which other product categories like home theater audio or home automation stepped up to take center stage, this year it was all about video and more specifically 3D.
At the show 3D standard bearers Digital Projection, Inc. (DPI), Samsung and Panasonic were joined by Sony, Toshiba, LG, JVC, SIM2, Runco, Wolf Cinema and others as the format dominated the talk on the show floor with people recognizing the improvements that have been made to the technology.
Now, with high-performance consumer video manufacturers joining the 3D video fray, it’s time for Hollywood to reciprocate by supporting the millions of dollars invested by these companies by releasing 3D Blu-ray discs to ensure the format’s success.
Working with limited content resources these manufacturers did the best they could to show off the improvements they have made to the 3D format and at the show several product demonstrations looked fantastic.
Here are the five 3D product demonstrations that stood out during the show:
Runco D-73d 3D Projector
Using a combination of the two hottest technologies in the consumer video market, the company’s D-73d combines an LED light engine with 3D video playback to provide high-performance home theater enthusiasts with a cutting edge solution. During its demo, the company showed clips from Avatar, Monsters vs. Aliens and some nature scenes, and I found the image to be colorful, lush and very watchable. Adding to the attractiveness of the company’s 3D product is the vast array of eyewear it’s going to offer for its passive 3D system. I’ll add that the pair of glasses I wore for the demo was making my Ray Ban’s jealous because they were stylish and comfortable. They were also the most comfortable glasses on the floor and the most comfortable of any 3D glasses I've ever encountered.
SIM2 C3X LUMIS 3D system
The Italian company like Runco uses a two-projector, passive approach to 3D and like Runco, SIM2 produced what may have been the best 3D images on the show floor. Using a concert clip from a Black Eyed Peas show and a 2D clip from the movie Nine, SIM2 demonstrated how it could balance a quality 3D experience that was bright and punchy with a stellar 2D image that produced nicely saturated colors, a high level of brightness and nice grayscale detail all through the beauty of Fergie any her multi-tiered career.
Wolf Cinema 3D Bundle
The San Francisco-based company Wolf Cinema is a relative new comer to the world of high-performance consumer home video, but it’s quickly establishing its products as a player in the world of consumer electronics. At the CEDIA show the company debuted a passive 3D system that included a DepthQ polarizer and an option for an active-shutter 3D solution for those who prefer an active-shutter system. During its demo the company showed full 1080p for each eye and broadcast level 3D, which was a lower resolution HD 3D image. In addition, Wolf highlighted how its product could work with a Stewart Filmscreen silver screen to effectively display 2D content with a 3D system without a loss of quality.
Digital Projection, Inc. (DPI) Titan 3D
Exhibiting in its home town of Atlanta, DP showed a series of impressive projectors, which included the new HIGHLite Cine 260 HC and the M-Vision Cine 230. The star of the company’s booth to many people however is the Titan 3D. Running clips from G-Force I thought the images the Titan produced provided a nice sense of depth without being overly aggressive and I thought the overall image quality was detailed with good color accuracy.
Toshiba Cinema Series: 700 and 800
This may surprise some and from what I’ve been told Toshiba may have switched its content choice by the time I saw its demo, but I walked away impressed with Toshiba’s first 3D TVs. Using a combination of content, I thought Toshiba’s Cinema Series 700 and 800 televisions produced bright images that deftly walked the line of detailed vs. too aggressive and noisy. Toshiba says that it purposely let the market settle before launching its 3D products that bundle proprietary technologies like its 3D Resolution Plus and AutoView with the now, standard web apps like Yahoo TV, Youtube.com and Net Flix to provide users with a choice of stylish, state-of-the-art 3D TVs.
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