Netflix has announced that they are upgrading several of their user interfaces. The upgrades will be for the PlayStation 3 game console and several select Smart HDTVs and Blu-ray players. The new interface has a new design that is “more consistent with the Netflix player on the web.” Users will now be able to select audio languages and subtitles. There will also be a new “Trickplay” feature that highlights small sample images when fast forwarding. This will give the user a better idea of what part of the movie to forward to. The new interface is already available for PS3 owners to download. The other products selected for the upgrade can expect to see the update available soon.
Samsung held a showcase event recently in London and at the show they unveiled their latest LED HDTV, the UE55F8500. This TV measures 55 inches and comes with full HD (1920 x 1080) resolution, 3D technology and a “Mega” contrast. The F8500 series is the company’s flagship series and represents some of this year’s best HDTVs. Some of the main features include LED backlighting with micro dimming ultimate, quad-core processor, 1000 Hz CMR frame interpolation, and more. It is even compatible with the Samsung Evolution Kit that was unveiled a few months ago. Samsung has not announced a retail price yet, but it is available to order.
LG is happy to announce today the launch of their new 2013 LED HDTVs. The company will have three new series ready, the LA7400, LA6900, and LA6200. These are the USA versions of the LA740V, LA690V, and LA620V TV series that are also being released in the UK. The projectors include the latest in HD (1920 x 1080) resolution, Smart TV technology, and 3D technology. In total there are 11 new projectors being released in the USA. They range in size from 42 inches to 60 inches, diagonally. The company plans to release their flagship OLED series and the top LED model later in May.
One of the new HDTVs to come from Sharp is the LC-60LE650U. This device features full HD (1920 x 1080) resolution, LED technology, and a 4000000:1 contrast ratio. Today, PC Magazine released their review of this device. The writers first note how inexpensive the TV is. But cheap TVs usually have a few problems to note. The writers were very happy with the TV’s brightness, but they thought the colors needed work. The low contrast ratio also hinders the image quality. The writers were happy though with the TV’s features. In the end, the writers stated, “Sharp’s Aquos LC-60LE650U is a reasonably priced 60-inch LED backlit HDTV offering a generous feature set and an overall sharp picture. Color accuracy and viewing angle performance could be better, though.”
The SamsungUE46F7000 HDTV is one of the many new TVs available this year. It comes with a 46 inch screen size and full HD (1920 x 1080) resolution. Today, the writers from Trusted Reviews released their experience with this particular device. They were very happy with the TV’s calibration options. It allowed them to hone the image to its optimal conditions with ease. The writers do note that calibration is a must if you want the best image quality from this TV. The 3D mode was equally nice. They were surprised to see absolutely zero cross talk too. They did notice some motion problems though, but they were minor. The Smart TV platform was both praised and criticized for its sophistication. While the system is very thorough it may be too complicated for some people to figure out. The final verdict the writers made was, “After a little calibration work the UE46F7000 ultimately turns in a very strong picture performance. We recommended saving up for Samsung’s superior F8000 series if you can, but if you really can’t stretch your budget that far, the Samsung UE46F7000 still lets you get your hands on a healthy chunk of Samsung’s current design, picture quality and smart TV prowess for a more palatable price.”
Merck is one of the many companies behind the development of OLED TVs. Recently, the company held an official inauguration ceremony for the grand opening of their Taiwanese technology development center. At the ceremony, the company announced that it is responsible for providing OLED materials for various big name companies. Among them are LG and their upcoming 55” OLED TV. Merck did not announce which components specifically are used though. They also announced that they are currently collaborating with another Taiwanese panel maker in order to develop an ink-jet printing method for OLED TV panels.
There is a new TV manufacturer joining the industry soon called LeTV. And today, the company held a press release to unveil their very first HDTV called “Super TV.” The TV was designed with the help of key companies like Innovation Works, Qualcomm, Foxconn, and Sharp. The TV will measure 60 inches and come with a 1080p HD (1920 x 1080) resolution, 120Hz processor, 3D technology, and a 1.7GHz quad-core Snapdragon S4 Prime processor. The company also plans to make smaller 39 inch model as well. The TVs are not expected to launch until the end of June. The 60 inch model will retail for about $1140.
NEC is a leading provider of commercial LCD display and projector solutions. Today, the company unveiled their latest MultiSync HD monitor, the E223W-BK. This screen measures 22 inches and comes with SXGA+ (1680 x 1050) resolution and a 1000:1 contrast ratio. The monitor has received the Energy Star 6.0 certification, which ensures an eco-friendly product. Other big features include a 250 cd/m2 brightness level, a carbon footprint meter, several preset modes, and more. “NEC Display’s strong commitment to the environment has been an industry hallmark for a number of years,” said Kevin Christopherson, Director of Product Marketing for Desktop Displays at NEC Display Solutions. “The MultiSync E223W uses an LED-backlit LCD to increase energy savings by up to 40 percent in comparison to conventional CCFL-backlit LCD monitors. This is especially beneficial to our business customers that are looking for ways to reduce their impact on the environment, as well as save costs.”
This week on HD Nation’s Tech Feed Show, the hosts begin by giving a brief overview of the new Microsoft 720 Xbox system that was unveiled. One of the big improvements the system is supposed to include is TV and Blu-ray capabilities. The big question the hosts have is will Sony be able to create a PlayStation console that can match the 720. In another segment, a viewer writes in asking what content do the hosts recommend to watch off their recently purchased Panasonic VT60 TV. It is without question that the VT60 series are some of the best when it comes to image quality. The only series that might surpass them is the upcoming ZT60 series, which are Panasonic’s flagship series this year. The hosts recommend watching full motion content in order to break in the display panel. Videos with a scrolling ticker or lots of static information bars are not recommended because it doesn’t exercise the full screen. The other big segment this week is a look at the DVDO’s Quick6 HDMI switcher and a cheaper model from Monoprice. The big difference between the two is retail prices, which are about $400 and $100, respectively. But the higher retail price for the Quick6 gives the device a lot of features that are not available in the cheaper model. Feature included are autoswitching, new sources, an audio return channel, and it supports 4K formats.
The cheapest UHD TV currently on the market is the SeikiSE50UY04. This 50 inch TV features the new UHD (3840 x 2160) resolution and a 5000:1 contrast ratio. Recently, the writers from HD Guru released their review of this screen. The biggest attraction to this TV is its price tag. Most UHD TVs are estimated in the $10000 range, but the SE50UY04 retails for only $1400. One of the reasons the TV is so cheap is that it is a stripped down model that doesn’t include 3D or Smart technology. This provides customers a no frills TV that focuses on low cost, high quality displays. The writers do note though that while the resolution is nice, the image quality is average at best. They also note that currently there isn’t any 4K content available, which questions the need for 4K TVs at the moment. The writers did notice an improvement in image quality over a standard HD (1920 x 1080) resolution TV. But in the end, the writers stated, “I applaud Seiki for making a big splash, and coming out with what will probably be the most talked about TV of 2013. I’m sure there will be many who will buy this TV just because it’s 4K, and it’s $1,400. So yes, the Seiki does 4K and that is cool. If that’s all you want, by all means get one.”