updated 12:15 pm EST, Sat January 10, 2009
Sharp G3 Blu-ray at CES 09
Sharp at CES launched aggressively into its third wave of AQUOS Blu-ray readers with two stand-alone players and a pair of home theaters that also carry the new storage. The BD-HP22U (not yet pictured) is the company's first Blu-ray Profile 2.0 player and uses an Ethernet connection to use Internet-specific special features on newer movies; it also bundles a 2GB USB drive to cache Internet features. Both this and the Profile 1.1-only BD-HP16U also have a slimmer design than past models, full 7.1-channel Dolby TrueHD and HD DTS Master Audio sound, and lower power consumption that drops to 19W.
Price is also a concern for the players; the BD-HP16U ships in March for $280, while the BD-HP22U arrives in May for $300.
For all-in-one buyers, the synthetic finish BD-MPC30 and wood finish BD-MPC40 home theaters both take a Profile 2.0 Blu-ray player and add to it an internal amp as well as a 720W, 5.1-channel surround sound system. Either version ships in spring and will cost the same $800.