updated 10:15 am EDT, Thu September 4, 2008
Pioneer at CEDIA 2008
Pioneer's efforts at the CEDIA show were unveiled today and focused on updates to its Elite Blu-ray and plasma lines. The releases are led by an addition to its Elite Blu-ray players of the BDP-09FD, its new top-end reader. The device is claimed as a first in the category and adds a new 16-bit imaging engine that it says improves video decoding, particularly for upscaling; most high-end readers still use 14-bit hardware. It also stands as Pioneer's first Blu-ray Profile 2.0 player with the option of Internet features as well as upgrading the player's firmware online.
The player is similarly committed to audio with a separate power supply just for the audio as well as individual DACs for each component of the 7.1 audio channels; it natively handles Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio with supporting movies and speakers.
The 09FD further supports 24 frames per second titles natively and carries two HDMI 1.3a inputs. Pioneer is hesistant to announce a ship date but will sell its new flagship for $2,199.
Matching the custom-install focus of CEDIA, Pioneer also said that it has begun shipping its two latest Elite KURO plasma TVs built for these specialized home theaters. The 50-inch PRO-101FD and 60-inch PRO-141FD both produce deep blacks but also have a thinner profile designed to be embedded into or hung on a wall. Their color calibration is also advanced and lets owners or home theater installers learn the white balance specific to the exact set, allowing them to adjust colors relative to the exact set.
The plasmas sell for $5,500 and $7,000 at their respective sizes.