Samsung HL-S4676S SlimDLP: 46″ Slim DLP

Samsung’s HL-S4676S SlimDLP, like the name suggests, has a slimmer profile than regular DLP units. According to an article in Engadget, the HL-S4676S 46″ DLP is 11.5″ thick. They compare it to a 56″ unit, which isn’t an apples-to-apples comparison: 14.5″ vs. 11.5″. So, I searched for another 46″ DLP unit and came up with Toshiba’s 46HM84 (1280 x 720, $795 – $2,477 at Shopzilla.com). Toshiba’s 46″ DLP had a depth of 15.3″. Compared to Samsung’s slimmed down HL-S4676S, the Toshiba is down right obese, thicker than Samsung’s 56″. I went and searched for another competitor and came up with another Samsung model: HLR4667W, a 46″ DLP unit with 1280 x 720 resolution. The skinny on this model: a depth of 19″!!! Although this has not been a thorough investigation (far from), the HL-S4676S SlimDLP does seem to be pretty skinny.

A quick search for “Samsung HL-S4676S” at Shopzilla.com came up with prices ranging from $1,099 to $1,999 at 9 stores. For me, with tax and shipping combined, $1,299.99 was the lowest price. For a 46″ DLP, that’s a pretty good price! Here are some specifications:

Chip spec: 1280 x 720 DLP
Color: 5 segment color wheel at 14,400 RPM
Speakers: 10W x 2
Ports: HDMI, PC, S-Video, Component Video, USB

Source: Samsung

NEC LCD2690WUXi: 25.5″ Wide LCD Monitor

The 25.5″ size is an odd-ball size, but it is more accurate than the 26″ size that is floating around. The 26″ that you see out there is actually a 25.5″. NEC Display’s LCD2690WUXi, contrary to its naming scheme, is a 25.5″ wide LCD monitor and will be introduced into the wild in January 2007 in Japan. The price is a hefy JPY 239,400 (about US$2060). The response time is on the slow side at 16ms; the resolution is the same as a 23″ or a 24″ at 1920 x 1200. Brightness is rated at 400 cd/m2 and viewing angles are 178/178. The contrast ratio is a respectable 800:1.

The best part of this display is that the color gamut has been increased to 91% NTSC. I am not sure what type of backlight it is using but it is most likely a wide color gamut CCFL (WCG CCFL) instead of LED. LED-based backlights get closer to 100% NTSC while WCG CCFLs get to the low-90’s. There are two DVI ports and a VGA port.

Source: DailyTECH

Chi Mei Plans Price Drop of 22″ to $300

Now this is crazy. According to the Chinese-language Apple Daily, Chi Mei is planning to cut the price of its own-branded 22″ LCD monitor in Taiwan from NT$11,900 to NT$9,990. In US dollars, that’s about $300! Chi Mei is also planning to lower prices of its 20″ and 19″ wide LCD monitors.

With a $300 price tag for a 22″ LCD monitor, there really is no other option but to get one! Compared to a $149 17″, $199 19″, $219 19″ wide, or $249 20″ wide, the $300 22″ is unbeatable. The only thing keeping me back is the Chi Mei brand and whether it will be available State side.

Source: FPDisplay

Innolux: 22″ Wide Mass Production

Innolux Display, a Taiwan-based manufacturer of LCDs, is planning to mass produce 22″ wide LCD monitor panels later this month. Innolux is currently developing a 26″ wide LCD monitor panel and plans to mass produce it in early 2007.

Remember one of the first 22″ LCD monitors? I believe it was Apple that came out with a 22″, but the resolution was much less than what we have now at 1680 x 1050. I’m not sure why the resurgence of 22″, but it must have something to do with how G6 and G7 LCD fabs are optimized. I personally do not like the 22″ size and resolution as it does not give me any additional pixel real estate than a 20″ but costs more. Same deal with 26″: I’d stick with yesterday’s 23″ at the same resolution of 1920 x 1200.

Source: FPDisplay

Samsung SM225BW: 22″ Wide LCD Monitor

Samsung’s SM225BW is a 22″ wide LCD monitor that looks somewhat stoic. Many other companies have 22″ offerings and, in my opinion, look much better. The SM225BW’s specifications don’t look bad at all:

Display size: 22″
Brightness: 280 cd/m2
Response time: 5ms GTG
Contrast ratio: 700:1
Viewing angle: 160/160
Resolution: 1680 x 1050

The viewing angle at 160/160 is a bit on the low side, but it seems most 22″ LCDs have lower viewing angles. I would like to see roughly 176/176 no matter what the size. The 5ms GTS response time should be good enough for the casual 3D gamer. The brightness specification of 280 cd/m2 is plenty bright, but I would need to put the standard at 300 cd/m2; the SM225BW falls a bit short. I have mentioned this in my previous post, but I believe the 20″ wide size and resolution is the sweet spot. At 19″ wide you get less resolution (1440 x 900) but at 22″ you get the same resolution as the 20″ wide but probably will cost more.

The design as mentioned at the top is a bit stoic. There is nothing wrong with simple, but the SM225BW’s design is bordering on boring. The height adjustment is of the thick-neck-type where you pull up/push down. Though this mechanism works there are better ways (search for Asus and Acer’s 20″+ offerings). The base looks a bit smallish for the large 22″ display; it wouldn’t be surprising to see the monitor wobble when pushing the OSD buttons. There are DVI, composite and VGA inputs.

Source: Samsung

Acer AL2015W: 20.1″ Wide LCD Monitor

The AL2015W from Acer is the second largest model in the company’s Gamer Line; the largest is the AL2251W. The 20.1″ wide AL2015W has the following specifications:

Display size: 20.1″
Resolution: 1680 x 1050
Response time: 8ms GTG
Contrast ratio: 800:1
Brightness: 300 cd/m2
Viewing angle: 176/176

The AL2015W also has two speakers rated at 1.5W, which sounds a bit weak even for built-in speakers. The weird thing about Acer’s line of monitors is that it has a Performance Line and a Gamers Line. I’m not sure about you, but gamers need all the performance that a monitor can give! From the pictures at Acer, there seems to be a DVI, VGA and RCA video inputs.

The height adjustment mechanism seems to be quite sturdy, at least from the looks of it. There is also an interesting connection box on the rear that will likely make connecting cables to the AL2015W much easier. The 20.1″ wide LCD monitor is my sweet spot. The smaller 19″ wide LCDs have a lower resolution (1440 x 900) but the larger 22″ wide models don’t give you any more pixels. You’ll need to get to 23″ for a nice 1920 x 1200 display but it will also cost you a bit more.

Source: Acer

ASUS PW201: 20″ Wide LCD Monitor

The PW201 20″ wide LCD monitor from ASUS won the IF Design Award China 2006. The LCD has a anti-reflective glare film that gives that glare look without the reflections–something that I would like to see in all glare-type screens. The specifications are as follows:

Display size: 20.1″
Resolution: 1680 x 1080
Brightness is 350 cd/m2
Contrast ratio: 800:1
Viewing angle: 176/176
Response time: 8ms GTG (grey to grey)

For inputs, there are several: DVI-D, VGA, composite, S-Video, and component. Similar to Dell’s Ultrasharp offerings, the PW201 has a USB 2.0 hub with three downstream ports. Unlike any monitor from Dell, this comes with a 1.3 megapixel webcam on the top portion of the monitor. There are also speakers built-in: one on each side rated at 3W. For some ooomph you’ll most likely need extra speakers with a sub, but for daily things like watching YouTube or listening to music on OpenPandora, the speakers can work and will allow for a much simpler setting.

The height adjustment feature on the PW201 is very well done. I prefer this z-type rather than the ones that are standard on Dell’s Ultrasharp models where you either push down or pull up a fairly large neck. From the looks of the LCD specifications, I would hazard to guess that it’s a VA-type that gives very high contrast ratios right in the middle but falls off rather quickly as you move off axis. Most of the time this will not be a problem as you will be the only person using the monitor. With dropping contrast ratios, you experience color shifts. When you have friends over, they might see a slightly different color than you do. Also color fidelity at any angle is an issue for larger monitors. If you are someone who needs color fidelity, do not assume that you’ll get it just because of the size. You will most likely need at least a Super PVA (some Samsung models) LCD or Super IPS (LG, NEC, some HP, some Dell) LCD. ASV from Sharp and MVA-types from Taiwanese manufacturers will get the job done, but not nearly as well.

Source: ASUS

Teco Group Builds LCD TV Production Plant in China

Taiwan’s Teco Group inaugurated its LCD TV production plant in the Xiamen Torch High-tech Industrial Development Zone (XM Torch) located in the Fujian Province in mainland China. The invest of US$150 million toward the LCD TV plant will result in 2-3 million LCD TV units per year and will become Teco’s global strategic manufacturing center. The plant will produce both Teco-branded and ODM models for Viewsonic. Teco’s plant will also ship semi-knock-down (SKD) parts to a plant in the Czech Republic run by Taiwan’s First International Computer (FIC) for final assembly.

In no time will China become the largest market for flat panel TVs such as LCD TVs and plasma TVs. As overall per-capita income levels rise in China, demand for flat panel TVs will surely grow and will soon eclipse the US and western Europe as the largest potential TV market. But at the moment, only the cheapest LCD TVs are sold in large numbers in China due to comparatively (to their income) high prices.

Source: Taiwan Headlines

Wintek to Setup Shop in India

Taiwan-based Wintek will invest in a LCD module plant in India. Wintek manufactures small/medium LCD panels. The LCD module plant will specialize in modulizing mobile phone LCDs and will be located in the Nokia Telecom Special Economic Zone. Wintek’s new module plant will be India’s first and will supply major mobile phone brands. Currently, Wintek’s largest customer is Motorola but that will change and shift to Nokia in the future according to the company.

Nokia plans to invest US$150 million into the Special Economic Zone to establish mobile phone and related telecommunication equipment and facilities. Wintek is currently the world’s largest mobile phone panel supplier with the purchase of a G3 TFT LCD fab from struggling HannStar Display for about US$186 in September 2006.

Source: TMCnet

TPO Displays 4.3″ Wide LCD

The 4.3″ wide TFT LCD has a resolution of 800 x 480 and is made by TPO Displays. FYI, TPO was created by merging Toppoly and Philips’ small/medium LCD operation. TPO is expecting 30K-60K unit shipments of its 4.3″ LCD in 2007. In my opinion, the 4.3″ has a resolution that will enable viewing of DVD-quality movies in a unit about the size of the PlayStation Portable (PSP). Currently the PSP has a resolution of only 480 x 272. Hmm. A PSP spec bump to 800 x 480 with a slide up screen and QWERTY keyboard? That would be nice. Yes, kill off the mylo.

Source: EETimes