Epson (Pro Cinema 6010), Marshall (ORCHID OR-70-3D), JVC (DLA-X90R) and Sony (SXRD) all announced 3D projectors and monitors within the past week. Each product improves on a different aspect of the 3D viewing experience, and JVC’s and Sony’s products especially provoke questions about the future of optical storage media.
Epson launched a line of 2D and 3D Full 1080p 3LCD projectors, which improve upon their best-selling designs. The Bright 3D Drive Technology and the 480 Hz refresh rate significantly improve the brightness of the projector, which is normally the Achilles’ heel of 3D projection. Also, the lower end model will cost $1,600, which is significantly more affordable than other models on the market.
Marshall unveiled its new Autostereoscopic 3D Production Monitor, the ORCHID OR-70-3D). Autostereoscopic technology allows viewers to watch 3D content without glasses, unlike standard stereoscopy. Marshall intends this 7-inch portable monitor for high quality video production; however, autostereoscopic 3D TVs should follow shortly.
Finally, Sony announced the future release of their consumer 4K 3D projector, the VPL-VW100ES SXRD and JVC displayed its DLA-X90R at CEDIA 2011. Unfortunately, while promoted as a consumer product, Sony’s new toy is rumored to cost around $30,000, but JVC’s will cost around $12,000.
Beyond the large price tag, having a consumer-level 3D 4K device on the market brings up a crucial problem: who has 4K video content to drool over, much less 3D 4K video content? To counteract this deficiency, the projector features the ability to upscale both HD and SD content to 4K, producing a significant improvement in video quality.
4K projectors, thus far, have mainly been used for viewing content on a computer in a business environment; however, consumers want beautiful 4K projectors to watch 4K video or also known as Ultra HD. What kind of storage media could handle Ultra HD?
The three main contenders for the next generation of optical media are Holographic Versatile Discs (HVD), Laser-Selection-Type Recordable Optical Disks (LS-R), and Protein-Coated Discs (PCD). Developers of all these next gen discs boast that they can hold over one terabyte of information; however, all these products are in the development stage without concrete timelines for release so it might be awhile before most of us can enjoy Ultra HD on our 4K TVs.