Pioneer’s KURO plasma display panel (PDP) TVs have extreme performance and has set the standard for black levels. Pioneer has stated that it will introduce KURO front projectors and LCD TVs.
The second generation KURO PDP TVs feature a near absolute black by reducing the idle luminance. Compared to the 2007 KURO models, the second generation has black levels that are five times darker according to Pioneer. The second generation KURO PDP TVs are available in 50″ and 60″ sizes. The KURO PDP TVs are also very thin at just 9.4 cm or 3.7″.
- PDP-LX5090: 50″, 1920 x 1080, SD Terrestrial Digital Tuner, June 2008
- PDP-LX6090: 60″, 1920 x 1080, SD Terrestrial Digital Tuner, June 2008
- PDP-LX5090H: 50″, 1920 x 1080, SD/HD Terrestrial and Satellite Digital Tuner, Region Dependent
- PDP-LX6090H: 60″, 1920 x 1080, SD/HD Terrestrial and Satellite Digital Tuner, Region Dependent
The PDP-LX5090H and PDP-LX6090H models incorporate a digital terrestrial and satellite tuner that is compliant to the EICTA HDTV 1080p Minimum Requirement, in addition to being DLNA compliant.
There are currently two lines of KURO available in the US: Pioneer KURO and Elite KURO. The Pioneer KURO line is composed of three sizes: 42″, 50″ and 60″. And the Elite KURO line also has those exact same sizes.
Pioneer KURO (US)
- PDP-4280HD: 42″, 720p, $1999
- PDP-5080HD: 50″, 720p, $2500
- PDP-5010FD: 50″, 1080p, $5000
- PDP-6010FD: 60″, 1080p, $6500
Elite KURO (US)
- PRO-950HD: 42″, 720p, $2700
- PRO-1150HD: 50″, 720p, $3500
- PRO-110FD: 50″, 1080p, $6000
- PRO-150FD: 60″, 1080p, $7500
The KURO LCD TVs will slotted right below the KURO PDP TV sizes. Black levels will not be as good as the PDP TVs due to how LCD technology works, but will include high-performance features such as 100Hz/120Hz double frame-rates. The aluminum-look finished KURO LCD TVs will come in three sizes: 46″, 37″, 32″.
- KRL-32V: 32″, 1920 x 1080, 100Hz, August 2008
- KRL-37V: 37″, 1920 x 1080, 100Hz, August 2008
- KRL-46V: 46″, 1920 x 1080, 100Hz, TBD
In addition to FPD TVs, Pioneer will be entering into the front projector market with its KURO projector. The KURO projector is configured for screen sizes starting from 60″ and is based on JVC’s liquid crystal on silicon (LCoS) technology called D-ILA and boasts a pixel format of 1920 x 1080. The KURO projector will use three 0.7″ D-ILA LCoS 1080p chips.
- KRF-9000FD: 60″-200″, 1920 x 1080, 50Hz, April 2008
Pioneer was 100% PDP TV for a long time and has lead in many technology developments. The TV market has quickly shifted away from PDP TVs and now is on the verge of completely taking over the entire TV market in the next few years. With G10 LCD fabs just around the corner that are able to churn out 60″-class LCD TV panels efficiently, it is no wonder we see a pure-play Pioneer introducing LCD TVs and a projector. Pioneer has a strong presence in CEDIA due to its strong front screen performance. The KURO line of PDP TVs are at the top of the game. The CEDIA market is also well served by front projectors that go beyond the largest FPD TVs and Pioneer is smartly coming out with a front projector. I do hope the KURO branded LCD TVs and projectors do not diminish the brand and the efforts the company has put into the KURO PDP TVs.
One last comment and this has nothing to do with the TVs but with the advertisement. If Pioneer really knows its customers, it should know that the majority of decision makers regarding TVs is women. With the new advertisements featuring an image where a mouth is embedded into an eye, the women will generally not be responding, “Wow, that’s wonderful!” I find it a bit gross myself. I would toss the advertisement as soon as possible as I believe it has a negative impact on sales.
[tags]1080p, 1920 x 1080, 32″, 37″, 46″, 50″, 60″, 720p, D-ILA, Front Projector, KURO, LCD TV, LCoS, Liquid Crystal on Silicon, PDP TV, Pioneer[/tags]