Could 'lifesize' plasma TVs just a millimetre thick be the way ahead?

This is the 3m x 2m display from Shinoda Plasma, the company founded a few years back by one of the leading lights of Fujitsu's abandoned flatscreen programme. It's being promoted as the first screen on the market able to show lifesize human beings, and is aimed at the entertainment and information markets.

And while it's not the largest plasma screen on the market – at 145in it's just short of the 150in-diagonal set shown by Panasonic last Autumn – it has advantages of its own. For example, it's only 10% of the weight of conventional screens, and uses half as much power as similar-sized screens.

It's also scalable, being composed of modules a metre square, which will make even larger screens possible.

Oh, and did I mention that it's just 1mm thick, and can be wrapped around curved surfaces? That's all made possible by the use of Plasma Tube Array technology.

Developed by the company led by Tsutae Shinoda, still known as 'Mr Plasma' within Fujitsu, the technology uses thin glass-lined tubes to create the picture elements.

The 145in screen has a power consumption as low as 800W, and weighs around 7.2kg. That's about 213kg less than Panasonic's 103in set.

Andrew has written about audio and video products for the past 20+ years, and been a consumer journalist for more than 30 years, starting his career on camera magazines. Andrew has contributed to titles including What Hi-Fi?, GramophoneJazzwise and Hi-Fi CriticHi-Fi News & Record Review and Hi-Fi Choice. I’ve also written for a number of non-specialist and overseas magazines.