has announced the immediate availability of three new professional plasma displays, the 50″ TH-50PHD6UY, 42″ TH-42PHD6UY and 37″TH-37PWD6UY, which join the recently announced 42″ TH-42PWD6UY as its sixth-generation plasma family. The three new flat screen displays deliver color reproduction with 1,536 gradation shades and 1,070 million colors.
The new 37″ TH-37PWD6UY offers a contrast ratio of 4000:1, and the TH-50PHD6UY and TH-42PHD6UY high definition units produce a 3000:1 contrast ratio.
Panasonic’s TH-6 displays feature picture-enhancing technologies including Super Real Gamma System, a Real Black Drive System, a Deep Black Filter, a MACH Enhancer and a Contrast Automatic Tracking System (C.A.T.S.); and improved usability with new functionality in the form of dual-picture modes, a 9-point digital zoom and multi-function slots for interchangeable IT networking and AV inputs.
To improve on Panasonic’s plasma image quality, TH-6 series offers picture-improving technologies including: a Super Real Gamma System to reproduce gradations in steps equivalent to 1,536 shades to deliver greater image depth and provide subtle nuances in dark scenes; a Real Black Drive System to reduce pre-charge emission when reproducing the color black to deliver deeper, richer blacks; and a Deep Black Filter in the panels’ front protective glass that suppresses light transmittance and dramatically reduces the amount of external light reflected (a 70% improvement in contrast ratio performance for HD models).
The MACH enhancer – an exclusive Panasonic contour-emphasis signal processing technology – improves an object’s contours to best reflect the manner the human eye perceives objects. The HD Mach Panels (TH-50PHD6UY/42PHD6UY) increase the area in which the phosphor can be applied, dramatically improving both the light-emitting efficiency and intensity, with a resultant 40% boost in brightness as well as contrast improvements.
The units’ C.A.T.S. automatically senses the ambient light conditions and adjusts brightness and gradation, ensuring the best possible image contrast while reducing power consumption and minimizing phosphor aging.
In addition to a fixed input interface, the TH-6 series comes equipped with multi-function slots where a variety of optional IT networking or AV input boards can be added or exchanged to customize the units to meet specific applications.
Unique to the 16:9 panels is dual picture capability-including picture-in-picture and picture-out-picture modes–where two different type AV signal sources can be combined and displayed independently. The displays offer two picture-in-picture modes; one that splits the screen in half and shows different pictures on each half, and the other traditional mode where a small picture is inserted in the image on the entire screen. Picture-out-picture positions one picture on three-quarters of the screen and a smaller image on the remainder. The panels’ remote control includes dedicated buttons to easily display these modes.
The TH-6 models also offer a 9-point digital zoom that allows a user to enlarge an image two to three times normal size from nine points on the screen, and then to display the zoomed image full screen for added impact. The progressive-scan display is engineered for multi-screen applications with a built-in image enlarge function that simplifies the operation of four (2 x 2 or nine (3 x 3) units; e.g., with nine 50-inch displays the user can configure a huge display equivalent to 150 inches simply by connecting ordinary cables.
TH-6 displays can be vertically or horizontally mounted and are ideal as updateable digital signage or for an endless array of multimedia applications (optional fan kit required for HD models). These ultra-thin displays offer a wide viewing angle of 160 degrees. The panels are equipped with a host of energy-saving functions including Display Power Management Signaling, Auto Power Off, Power Save Mode, Standby Power Save Mode, and C.A.T.S. The addition of “menu” and “enter” buttons to the front panel permits control of on-screen display functions without the remote control.
Panasonic’s TH-6 series plasmas are available at suggested list prices (SLP) of…
$8,495 for the TH-50PHD6UY 50″ HD
$5,995 for the TH-42PHD6UY 42″ HD
$3,495 for the TH-37PWD6UY 37″ SD.
Optional plug-in terminal boards include:
TY-42TM6A BNC component video, SLP $110
TY-42TM6B BNC composite video, SLP $145
TY-42TM6Z RCA component video, SLP $110
TY-42TM6V RCA composite video, $145
TY-42TM6D DVI/HDCP, SLP $200; TY-42TM6P PC input, $110
TY-42TM6G RGB active, SLP $165.
Other options include detachable stereo speakers; pedestal, wall and mobile stands; and wall- and ceiling-hanging brackets.
The currently-available TH-42PWD6Y 42″ SD unit has a suggested list price of $3,995.