Seeing red, and red, and red
And then there’s the reds. Mitsubishi was tight-lipped about
every single technical detail of the TV, but I’m pretty sure they are proudest
of the reds. Almost every scene they showed on the set was saturated in
crimson—be it the lava planet from Star Wars, the all-red sequence from Hero or
the rouge in Moulin. And that’s significant, because red has generally been the
hardest color for TVs to produce properly.
The biggest mystery is how Mitsubishi produced such
laser-sharp images without the speckly artifacts that are supposed to be
inherent to laser projection. Did they put some special foo in the screen to
kill the speckle? Are they doing something unique with the lenses. We’ll have
to wait to find out.
But in most respects, the TV is probably the same as any
other Mitsubishi rear-projection TV. Instead of using a projector bulb or LEDs,
it uses lasers to light the Texan Instruments DLP chip that reflects images out
to the screen.
I want my laser TV
Mitsubishi says you can buy the new set by the end of the
year. They aren’t revealing the cost, but a marketing guy told me their 50-inch
model would compete with 65-inch LCD TVs, which run around $6000. Will folks
pay more money for a fatter TV, just for the color? I think the video fanatics
will—and there are a lot of them. Me, I think I’ll buy a bright red car