There were oodles of new products at the Philips 2010 launch in Barcelona: the TVs were the main event, especially as the company has decided to make its new 8000 and flagship 9000 Series TVs ‘3D-ready’.
This means they are compatible with 3D, but consumers will need to buy a ‘3D Pack’ – wireless transmitter plus two pairs of glasses – separately.
There’s almost nothing in the way of pricing from Philips at the moment – largely because many of these products will not hit the UK until the second half of 2010 – but when pressed, a Philips spokesman said he expected the Europe-wide price of the optional 3D pack to be ‘between 200 and 300 Euros’.
The TVs, then. The Flagship 9000 Series (below) will come in 32in, 40 and 46in screen sizes, and will be accompanied by the 50+in Cinema 21:9 set, too.
The 9000 TVs will feature:
– Ambilight Spectra 3, the advanced, ‘wall-adaptive’ Ambilight technology that compensates for the colour of your walls to ensure exactly the right colour tones are generated.– Top-of-the-range Perfect Pixel HD Engine– ‘LED Pro’ direct LED backlighting, with local dimming, 2,250 trillion colours and a claimed contrast ratio of 10 million to one.– 400Hz ClearLCD motion processing, with 0.5 millisecond response time.– ‘Net TV’ with Wi-Fi for viewing online services on the set.– Full HD 3D Ready, with active shutter system offering full 1080p resolution to both eyes – DLNA PC network link to browse PC and Home network content– Wi-Fi MediaConnect to play all your PC media files on the TV
The 8000 Series (below) will also be ‘Full HD 3D Ready’, and will come in 37in, 40in, 46in and 52in sizes.
They will feature Ambilight Spectra 2, 200Hz Clear LCD technology, a stylish pure glass frame, both wi-fi and Ethernet connectivity, and the same Net TV and DLNA features as the 9000.
The 7000 (below) Series will be released, along with the 8000 Series, in May. It will feature the Pixel Precise HD Engine, HD Natural Motion, 100Hz Clear LCD technology and Ambilight Spectra 2.
There will be lots of AV products coming this year from Philips, too. First up is the new ‘Fidelio’ range of iPod docking systems, the flagship of which is this, the DS9000.
It uses a two-way speakers system; smooth-edged, low-diffraction cabinet; and 100W RMS output power. It even uses wood that only comes from sustainably managed forests.
The Fidelio range also includes the DS9010, DS8550, DS8500, DS7550, SBD7500, DS3000 and tiny DS1100 models.
Will the new range manage to scare the likes of B&W and Bose? We can’t wait to find out with full reviews in the pages of What Hi-Fi? Sound and Vision.
Then there are two audio systems – one for stereo, one for surround 5.1 – that boast innovative sound-producing technologies. First is a home cinema in a box system, the HTS9540, which uses what Philips is calling ‘360Sound’.
Basically, each satellite speaker consists of two tiny sats, one on top of the other, with the lower of the two being a side-firing di-pole speaker. The sats are amplified separately, so what you get in effect is 9.1 speakers, but in a 5.1 configuration: four tripoles (using two channels of amplification each) plus centre speaker and subwoofer.
Then there’s the intriguing-looking stereo micro system, the MCi900, utilising Philips’ SoundSphere speaker design.
As you can see, the tweeter is significantly separated from the housing of the mid/bass driver. Philips says this allows greater diffusion of the sound throughout the room, with a ‘less constraining sweet spot’. But interestingly, the company claims it still creates, nonetheless, a decent stereo image.
Lastly, there’s a new Blu-ray soundbar coming, the HTS9140 AmbiSound Bar.
It features ‘AmbiSound’ virtual surround technology; DTS-HD and Dolby True HD decoding; Blu-ray playback; Wireless net connectivity and DLNA.
So, there you have it: the lowdown on what developments we'll be seeing from Philips in 2010. Due to most of these products coming later in the year, Philips is being cagey about pricing and exact release dates, but we'll be sure to update you with exact info as soon as we can.