Plasma Display and Front Projector Sales Hit Record Highs Q3 2005

Filed Under: Front Projectors, Home Theater News, Plasma and LCD Displays

Both plasma and front projection HDTV sales have hit record highs for the third quarter of 2005. The hd movement is picking up even more steam. I knew the rest of the world would start to come around.

Plasma display panels – 1.9 million units shipped in Q3:

Traditional seasonal strength — along with plasma TV street pricing below sweet spot levels — has boosted plasma panel shipments to a record 1.9M units in Q3’05, reports DisplaySearch. That’s an increase of 37 percent over the previous quarter, and a 118 percent increase year on year.


Front Projectors – 1.1 million units shipped in Q3:

Pacific Media Associates (PMA), the global leader in value-added demand-side market information on large-screen displays, announced that combined professional and consumer front projector sell-in shipments during Q3 ’05 reached 1,069,000, representing 20% year/year growth and besting the previous quarterly high set in Q4 ’04.


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Halo and Halo 2 Much Improved on Xbox 360

Filed Under: HD Gaming

Both Halo and Halo 2 get special treatment on the next gen xbox 360. They will both be widescreen, 720p, with full Anti-Aliasing (less jaggies).

Here is a quic comparison:

halo and halo 2 original vs xbox 360

This is awesome! The first Halo wasn’t even widescreen, and that sucked. Now we get both versions pumped up to HD quality – good job Bungie!

[Via HD Beat]

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Home Theater Bling

Filed Under: Misc - Other

home theater photos I came across the finished product photos on the home theater project with the most Bling! I have ever seen. Incredible.

Even the ceiling reminds me of Vegas casinos and shopping malls.

If I only had the time…

Steve’s Home Theater – Completed Project Photos

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Why Is the Film Industry Floundering?

Filed Under: Misc - Other

I found an interesting article over on Film Gecko today, titled “Why Is the Film Industry Floundering?”

Erin cites Cost, Atmostphere, Movie Release Timing and Competition. I found it an interesting read, but would add a couple of points:

1) Convenience. I get to push play when I want, pause to go umm, stretch my legs when I want, and rewind to make sure I caught what that actor just said. I get to chill on my big comfy couch and stretch out. I can wait until my wife-unit comes home, and we may get to watch an odd dvd when we get that unexpected available 2 hours.

Shoot, I don’t even have to go get rentals. I let Netflix mail me DVDs and I watch them at my leisure.

2) The social aspect. I often view movies with friends. If we go to the theater, we go, enter theater to watch, and then leave. We have maybe a few minutes of social time before the flick starts. If I host the movie, we can cookout, hang out together before and after, maybe even watch another film. Friends are a good thing – righteous HTdudes build those relationships.

I’ve been harping on this for a while. Increasing prices, crappy ad-ridden theaters vs. a great experience in my home? A no brainer.

Film Gecko Post

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Sony KDS-R60XBR1 SXRD Review

Filed Under: Home Theater Reviews, Rear Projection

Hot on the heels of yesterday’s Sony 50″ SXRD Review, today we have a review on the 60 inch model, the KDS-R60XBR1. These sets should basically be the same except for size.

“As you can tell, I was most impressed with the KDS-R60XBR1. It is quite simply one of the best RPTVs we’ve ever reviewed, regardless of what it’s called.

Build Quality: 93
We took it out of the box holding the speakers (a big no-no), and it didn’t fall apart

Value: 95
• It sure is 1080p
• Lowest-priced 1080p set we’ve seen so far

Features: 92
• Why is there no way to check lamp life?
• Lots of adjustability and inputs

Performance: 96
• A remarkable contrast ratio
• A black level better than most front projectors

Ergonomics: 90
• Remote control is too sparse
• Menus are almost too detailed

Overall Rating: 94
Its performance speaks for itself. It’s a digital RPTV with nearly videophile performance, something most people never thought possible. Kudos to Sony. ”

I still don’t like the speakers/outside frame, but that’s just a personal nag. Don’t let me bring you down. 😉

Home Theater Review

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42” Olevia LCD HDTV – LT42HVI

Filed Under: Home Theater News, Plasma and LCD Displays

syntax olevia LT42HVI LCD
Syntax showcasing its latest Olieva LCD TVs at the Electronic House Expo Show, gets the LT42HVI 42 inch model in the finals for Multi-Room Audio/Video Awards. I’m not exactly sure how prestigious this is, but it sure sounds impressive eh?

Syntax’s Olevia LCD TVs are designed to deliver a total quality digital entertainment experience and are manufactured with the same high quality panels, video processing chipsets and other key components that are used in Tier One branded products. Olevia LCD TVs yield a two-fold value proposition for consumers — superior performance and affordable prices with an industry-leading “on-site” warranty.

(Read – we just as good as Sony!)


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New DVD Releases This Week

Filed Under: Media - Movies - Games

A couple of new, popular and decently rated DVDs are released this week:

charlie and the chocolate factory widescreen DVD Charlie and The Chocolate Factory (widescreen, of course)

This one is rated 7.5/10 at the Internet Movie DataBase


The Devil's Rejects DVD Widescreen The Devil’s Rejects

Which conjures up a 7.0/10 at the IMDB

Rent them from Netflix – free 10 day trial.
Movies right to your mailbox, the ultimate for lazy bum home theater dudes.

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Sony KDS-R50XBR1 SXRD Review

Filed Under: Home Theater Reviews, Rear Projection

I have found yet another review of this popular unit. This thing has caused quite the buzz lately. In this review, Sound and Vision Magazine take an in-depth look at this beaut.

This 50 inch rear projection set has a list price of $4000 but I’ve seen it as low as $3000. (Check the deals tab at left.)

•Excellent HDTV picture detail.
•Rich, natural color.
•Excellent black rendition and shadow detail.
•Wide selection of effective picture adjustments.
•Custom picture memory for each input.

•No antenna signal-strength meter.
•No support for 1080p-format HDTV signals.

•1,920 x 1,080-resolution SXRD display
•Built-in HDTV tuner
•Digital cable-ready
•Variable Auto Iris contrast enhancement
•Inputs CableCARD slot; 2 HDMI (one with analog audio for DVI sources); 3 i.Link (FireWire); 2 component-video and 3 A/V with composite/S-video, all with analog stereo audio; 2 RF cable/antenna; VGA with minijack analog stereo audio; Memory Stick Pro slot
•Outputs optical digital and analog stereo audio

BOTTOM LINE I have so many good things to say about Sony’s KDS-R50XBR1 HDTV that it’s tough to sum it all up. First, there’s the gorgeous picture, which combines natural color and deep, CRT-like blacks with fine resolution. Then there’s the extensive feature set and picture tweaks, which go well beyond many other televisions. Finally, there’s the price tag. Four grand might seem high compared with similar-size rear-projection HDTVs, but very few of these offer 1080p display.

Perhaps the only real downside here is the Sony’s inability to show true 1080p HDTV signals. It’s not alone here among 1080p displays, and it’s a minor issue — there are no easily obtainable 1080p sources right now. That could change with the pending Blu-Ray and HD-DVD high-definition disc formats. But with so many other things going for it, I’ll lay bets that Sony’s newest SXRD offerings are going to shake things up in HDTV-land. ”

Read the Full Review at Sound And Vision Magazine


Harmony 880 Universal Remote Review

Filed Under: Home Theater Reviews

This remote is probably one of the most popular and most sought-after for home theater crazies like me. This review draws a lot of comparisons and contrats to harmony’s older model, the 688.

In summary, I really enjoyed my time with the Harmony 880. It addresses all of the shortcomings I noted in my review of the model 688 without losing any of the benefits of that remote. The only trouble I had in this review was trying to find something not to like. Its lack of RF (radio frequency) capability is probably its only significant drawback, but you can get that (for double the price) in its otherwise strikingly similar big brother the Harmony 890 Pro. But RF capability is only necessary if you want to control your devices from another room, or from the other side of an opaque cabinet. If your home theater devices are in one room, you have a lot of them, and it’s getting harder and harder to explain to your wife and kids how to use them, then get yourself to a Harmony dealer to check out the 880.

The only thing I don’t like about these remotes, is you have to use a computer and internet connection to configure it. I know that shouldn’t be a problem, but I don’t like any component of my system tethered to something that is sometimes unreliable. Once you config the remote, this isn’t a problem, but old farts like me prefer independence anyway.
Full Review

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Dell W4200 Plasma Review

Filed Under: Home Theater Reviews, Plasma and LCD Displays

HtGuys take a quick look at this Plasma display from Dell. Though Dell calls this unit “HD”, it is not. Clearly. The resolution of 1024 x 768 does not meet the minimum requirement of HD quality. And I’m almost tired of pointing that out, it is all too common for manufacturers to make this claim. Pah!!

Anyway, here are the findings:

What we liked:
Clear Detailed Picture
Accurate Color Representation
Wide Viewing Angle
More Connections than you will ever need
Great Shipping/Setup Experience

What we Disliked:

Slight Buzzing Sound coming from the TV (this issue has been acknowledged and addressed by Dell .. )
Out of box settings provide poor picture
Some Blacks not true (Only Ara saw this)


Overall we were very impressed with the Dell 4200 Plasma TV. The picture was sharp and clear (once we calibrated the TV). Colors were bright and vivid. There are more inputs than you will ever need and the TV includes a built in HD tuner.

HT Guys Review

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