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Sony Readies Thinnest 40-Inch LCD HDTV

The TV includes LED backlighting to produce higher contrast, boosts standard images to high-definition 1080p quality, and uses technology that shows all the colors the eye can see.
Sony plans to release in Japan this fall the thinnest 40-inch LCD high-definition TV to date.

The KDL-40ZX is only 0.39 of an inch thick, making it about half the size of the thinnest LCD HDTV from Hitachi, which is 0.74 of an inch thick. Pioneer has said it plans to release a plasma TV that's 0.35 of an inch thick, but no release date has been set.

Sony's KDL-40ZX1 is scheduled for release in Japan Nov. 10. Price wasn't released, but gadget enthusiast site Engadget reported that the TV would cost $4,474.

The new TV includes a number of Sony technologies for picture quality. While the TV has an LCD screen, it also incorporates LED backlighting to produce higher contrast, which results in a sharper picture. The screen has a contrast ratio of 3,000 to 1.

LEDs, or light-emitting diodes, emit more vibrant color than an LCD-only screen. LCD, or liquid crystal display, uses color pixels found on computer screens.

For video, the Sony set incorporates the company's 120-Hz MotionFlow technology that doubles the 60-frames-per-second rate of broadcast and cable TV to eliminate most of the blurring in action sequences, particularly in sports.

In addition, the product has Sony's Bravia Engine 2 image processing technology that boosts standard images, whether from a cable connection or DVD player, to high-definition 1080p quality. The set also supports the X.V. Color standard, which allows a TV to show all the colors the eye can see, which some experts estimate as high as 10 million. X.V. Color, however, is supported only in camcorders today, but Blu-ray movies are expected to be coded for it in the future.

The KDL-40ZX1 has ports based on the latest HDMI standard for playing video from set-top boxes, DVD players, computers, and other devices. The set also has a USB port for showing pictures from a thumb drive or digital camera.