updated 03:35 pm EDT, Thu August 28, 2008
Sony HW10 and IT1000
Sony's home theater introductions at Europe's IFA show have been rounded off through the launch of a BRAVIA projector and a matching BRAVIA Theatre Blu-ray home theater. The HW10 front projector is part of Sony's latest SXRD-based lineup and is designed for relatively high-end home theater setups with native 1080p, 24 frames per second output and a contrast ratio as good as modern HDTVs at 30,000:1. It further supports x.v.Color (Deep Color) video and is matched by a more recent BRAVIA image processing engine that allegedly maintains detail without the screen door or moire effects that often result from a sharper digital picture.
A far reach and quiet operation are also promised with a 1.6X zoom lens and a 22dB cooling system respectively; two HDMI 1.3 jacks allow it to accept more than one HD source without resorting to a switch. Sony has refrained from publishing a price but notes that the HW10 should sit significantly below the high-end VW200 in price, aiming instead at an "upper-mid" audience. Europe is known to be receiving the projector but should be followed by an American release.
The IT1100 theater in turn is pushed more for its design than its features alone, according to Sony: each of the five satellites were nicknamed "Pocky" by the company for being as relatively thin as the Japanese snack but combining with the subwoofer to produce 700W of total power. The design lets the floor-standing speakers avoid intruding on room space while the center channel is thin enough to hide under an HDTV.
The Blu-ray player itself is Blu-ray Profile 1.1 capable out of the box with Ethernet and a USB port that allow an upgrade to Profile 2.0's Internet features through a firmware patch; it also outputs x.v.Color over HDMI 1.3 and accepts music from iPods, Walkman players, and other devices through an optional Sony add-on.
Pricing and exact launch details are also unavailable for the HT1100, which is also first appearing in Europe but is likely to appear elsewhere.