Cinema 21:9 - The true cinema experience has arrived at home

Phil Hinton

Editor
Staff member
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Philips has today announced the launch of their £4,500 21:9 (2.39:1) LCD HDTV. Attached is the full press release. We have requested a review sample.

Philips Press Release said:
London, England – For the first time ever you can now enjoy the full cinematic viewing experience at home thanks to Philips’ ground-breaking new TV, Cinema 21:9.

Home viewers can watch films exactly as they are at the cinema, in the same 21:9 aspect ratio, on the set’s Full HD 56” screen.

The Cinema 21:9 TV will be launched on 18th June 2009 with an introductory offer that includes a ‘smart levelling’ bracket for hassle-free wall mounting and easy adjustment plus a free 5 year warranty for an all in estimated street selling price of £4500. An optional swivel stand will also be available with an estimates street selling price of £179.

Traditional widescreen TVs have an aspect ratio of 16:9, so with most movies the TV has to ‘letterbox’ the image to display the whole picture, which results in black bars at the top and bottom, taking up to 25% of the screen. However, when those movies are played on the Cinema 21:9 TV the black bars will be removed and the images will fit the display perfectly due to the panel’s 2.39:1 aspect ratio which exactly matches the standard used by most modern films.

The advantage of viewing material in the 21:9 ratio is that it uses more of the eyes’ peripheral vision and as such creates the immersive viewing experience as found in the cinema. When this experience is combined with Philips’ award-winning Ambilight system the end result is the best home cinema experience from any TV.


However, having this ultra-widescreen ratio doesn’t mean that the Cinema 21:9 cannot display the more standard 16:9 content from sources such as broadcast TV stations, games and DVDs. Using advanced ‘intelligent’ processing, the set can scale the image to fill the entire screen without any noticeable image distortion – so you can enjoy the ultimate viewing experience no matter what you are watching.

The screen’s Full HD 2560x1080p resolution results in an incredible 8.3 million pixels - managed by Philips 2009 Perfect Pixel HD engine and capable of processing 500 million pixels per second – which ensures that the images displayed are the sharpest, clearest and most natural pictures possible. And with 17bit colour processing, the screen is capable of recreating 2250 trillion colours for the most accurate colour matching yet, resulting in extremely vivid colours while keeping skin tones incredibly natural. The panel’s advanced dimming system also works together with Philips’ 2009 Perfect Contrast system to result in a contrast ratio of 80,000:1, and providing incredible black level response.

To enjoy the action of the cinema fully, the TV features an incredibly fast response time of just 1ms (BEW equivalent) thanks to the 200Hz Clear LCD technology and the set’s scanning backlight. This means pictures will always be razor sharp no matter how fast the action is. Judder is also completely removed as the TV features Philips’ 2009 Perfect Natural Motion system, where interpolated frames are created and inserted between the actual frames to create smooth motion without any blurring or loss in detail.

Adding to the incredibly special nature of this screen is the Ambilight Spectra 3 system which shines light from the rear of the TV to illuminate the wall behind - in a tone and intensity which matches the onscreen content. Ambilight Spectra 3 features array of LED lights along the top and both sides of the TV with the top light split into five segments, while each side is split into four segments – each of which can show a different hue and intensity of colour, giving a more accurate match of the onscreen action and a more immersive experience.

The TV also features Philips’ new NetTV system, allowing access to tailored sites as well as the entire internet an as the TV features inbuilt Wi-Fi, you can access the best of the internet without having cables running through the house. The TV can also access and play many types of digital content through its inbuilt USB socket as well as the wired and wireless network connections. The TV is also DNLA certified giving easy access to your digital world, whether it’s music (ACC, MP3, AC3, LPCM, WMA), photos (JPEG, GIF, PNG) or movies (MPEG1, MPEG2 and MPEG4)

In addition to Wi-Fi and cabled network connections the Cinema 21:9 also boasts five HDMI ports – four on the back and one on the side – so connection to all of the high definition devices is simple.

Sound is aptly dealt with by the TV’s 15W discrete sound system, which gives room-filling sound. With two integrated sub-woofers at the rear of the TV providing the bass and stylish visible forward-firing speakers on the front providing the speech and high notes, the sound is dramatic while always being clear and crisp.
 

Badger0-0

Distinguished Member
D'you know something?

Even though it's technically correct, I simply don't like it.

You have to think about what would do with other aspects too. Can you imagine a 4:3 picture on it? :eek:
But I guess that's not what it's for :D

Very nice specs though and it'll be interesting to see how it sells :smashin:
 
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Pecker

Distinguished Member
It's difficult to know where to begin. :rotfl:

First up, well done to them for giving it a go.

But then we get the problems.

What is the pixel lay-out of the screen - it says 2560x1080, so I presume the 16:9 centre is 1920×1080. So with 2.35:1 material we'll get scaling, not to mention 2:1, etc.

What will 4:3 look like on this with the absolutely huge black bars at the sides?

1.66:1 DVDs letterboxed on 4:3 DVDs, what will they look like? I shudder to think! Presumably like 4:3 films, only with small black bars at the top and bottom, unless there's a myriad of zoom modes.

It's all well and good saying "The advantage of viewing material in the 21:9 ratio is that it uses more of the eyes’ peripheral vision and as such creates the immersive viewing experience as found in the cinema", but is that right?

The screen is 56", so unless you sit very close indeed (say closer than 2m) I don't think that this'll be the case.

I'm open to the idea, and it'll be interesting to see what your review shows up Phil, but this is a set that perhaps raises more questions than it answers.

Thinking about it, the biggest worry of all will be how 4:3 material will look, swimming in the centre.

Final thought. You know when you go to someone's house and they have 4:3 stuff on their 16:9 TV in 'stretch' mode. Can you imagine what that'd look like here?

D'you know something?

Even though it's technically correct, I simply don't like it.

Not necessarily technically correct - read my blog. :smashin:

If you watch a 'scope film on a 4:3 set it's technically correct - it's the correct aspect ratio that counts far more than the display in this context.

Steve W
 
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Badger0-0

Distinguished Member
Not necessarily technically correct - read my blog.

If you watch a 'scope film on a 4:3 set it's technically correct - it's the correct aspect ratio that counts far more than the display in this context.

Ah, I see.

I stand technically corrected then :D

Cheers :smashin:
 

eiren

Distinguished Member
Sounds very interesting as a concept, but it's a shame it's a Philips LCD that will be showcasing it.
 

Phill1978

Active Member
this looks awesome,

on a side note i recently got to see in the flesh a 3d philips screen that required no glasses, it was very promising.

can the screen accept much higher resolution than 1080p or is it just inteligent processing ?

i would love to run anamorphic content from a PC like crysis at 8m pixel (or the max any GFX can can supply) !!!!
 
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Resolution is too high, HD Movies, i.e Bluray's Movies which are 2.40:1 so have resolution of 1920*800, will be scaled up all the way to 2560*1080, like watching dvd's being upscaled on your HDTV, wonder if you will be able to notice the loss in image quality

Why not release a Native 1920*800 Panel?
 

johnieutah

Active Member
I've seen this demoed in the local Saturn (electronics store here in Germany). It certainly looked impressive playing Wall E, but you've got to wonder what's the point when a lot of material is 1.85:1 these days (or even 4:3!). In fact, I presume everything has to be scaled one way or the other since 2.35:1 films are still stored in a 16:9 frame on blu-ray are they not? Then there's the issue with subtitles...:confused:

On a side note, I'm sure it's 3500euros here...

Matt.
 

Shaun666

Well-known Member
Surely for the money you'd be better off buying the biggest 16:9 tv you could get or a projector.

Seems a ludicrously expensive way of getting rid of black bars which I would have thought don't bother most movie buffs anyway.
 
D

Deleted member 92943

Guest
I like it, Hopefully when i upgrade my TV in about 18 months time, the prices of these will be MUCH lower and fully 3D capable as it's what i'll be looking to buy.

Loose the benefit of the imax scenes on Dark Knight Blu-Ray though :(
 

scumball

Distinguished Member
Isn't 21:9 more 2.33:1 than 2.39:1 with square pixel? The resolution makes it more 2.37:1 - they must have some slightly off square pixels on that...
 

Pecker

Distinguished Member
Surely for the money you'd be better off buying the biggest 16:9 tv you could get or a projector.

Seems a ludicrously expensive way of getting rid of black bars which I would have thought don't bother most movie buffs anyway.

And if you don't like the black bars...I think you could get a reasonable projector and a not-half-bad variable-masking screen for that price.

Indeed, why haven't they included some form of variable masking with this?

Steve W
 
The problem is it cant be 1920x800 because it wouldn't then be able to claim full HD, which for the money would be madness.
I dont see the point of this TV, if you want a large anamorphic image get a 60inch 16:9, its about the same size then, and is better with 16:9 and 4:3 and no scaling!
 

Pecker

Distinguished Member
In other threads we've discussed 2:1 and 2.1:1 screens. Surely these woulld be a good idea for someone to try.

When 16:9 was introduced we were told that it was the ideal compromise between 2.25:1 at one extreme, 1.33:1 at the other, with 1.85:1 fitting pretty near 16:9 in the middle.

We now have most TV at 16:9, and films currently appear to be edging towards a majority in 2.35:1 (though this may of course change).

A 2.1:1 screen would have a 'scope film nearly fill it with very small bars at the top & bottom (and it could be cropped very slightly for those who wanted it), 1.85:1 films would bearly fill it with very small black bars at the sides (and again it could be cropped very slightly for those who wanted it), and even 4:3 wouldn't look too 'bad' - not too much 'worse' than on a current 16:9 set.

Steve W
 

thechippy

Active Member
Come on guys, I know that most of you know more about TV's than I'll ever know but surely this is the new step towards the future.
When 16:9 first come out I bought one as I like new technology. It stretched pretty much all of the TV shows I watched but I didn't care because the material was soon to come, which I'm sure will happen with 21:9.
As I said before please excuse my ignorance but answer me this. If movies are filmed in 2.39:1 then surely blu-ray only needs recoding to be able to produce a true 2.39:1 picture on this TV? It is only coded to a 16:9 screen at the moment as there is no alternative. The film producers will exploit this new screen and showcase their films to this ratio, why wouldn't they?

On another point brought up by someone, I like to visit my local AV shop and check out their new products on regular basis. I spend thousands every year buying new tech, some good, some definitely not. But I have to say I noticed a new pretty unassuming Phillips LCD TV, not sure what model but it has a thin brushed steel bezel. It was next to a Pioneer Kuro both showing Blu Ray material. Now I know I am going to get lynched when I say this but my eye was drawn to the Phillips. It had NO judder at all on fast and slow moving pictures and the colours were so bright, when standing close I slightly squinted when a yellow car came on the screen. The blacks were very good indeed and considering it was next to a Kuro, again it was performing above and beyond what I would have expected. The picture actually shocked me how good it was and so I am looking forward to the launch night which I have been invited to in seeing just how it deals with the other ratios in question, which I myself am feeling slightly reserved about.

I have already decided that I want one as, to be honest, I just cant help myself when a new gadget appears on the market, so I will keep you informed as well as I can when I get it on the 18th. I am an avid Pioneer fan so I am a sceptic when it comes to all other brands, so please don't think I am a Phillips salesman, I am just a sucker for new tech and I am sure a new KRP 600 will be bought if this 21:9 turns out to be a lemon. (Please don't give me a harsh verbal kicking, be gentle :lease: )
 

Badger0-0

Distinguished Member
and the colours were so bright

Or most likely totally overblown.

That's not a dig, it's just something I've noticed about many people who prefer LCDs.

My point is colours are not supposed to be bright. The whole aim is to be realistic.
Hence the previous comment about this telly being a Philips LCD.

As for isn't it the future, well I don't know enough about it, but it strikes me that most stuff is 1.85:1 and I don't see that changing for a good while seeing as 16:9 tellies are being foisted on us.
 
Normally when i calibrate a screen i have to turn down the colour, sometimes quite a bit. Initially its a bit of a shock to the system, but it does look better. The way to tell is to calibrate on a spare profile, then when you go back to the standard one you see how awful it looked.
 
...its an LCD screen so how can it be 'the true cinema experience'?

Pointless idea - as has been said before - just buy a bigger screen and live with the bars...
 

Badger0-0

Distinguished Member
Does a plasma still offer a better picture than an LCD TV then?

I suspect Baldy was referring to a projector picture, but yes LCDs still have a way to go, imo.

No doubt he'll confirm his views :smashin:
 
I suspect Baldy was referring to a projector picture, but yes LCDs still have a way to go, imo.

No doubt he'll confirm his views :smashin:

What do you watch in the 'cinema' ---- a projector and we have loads of those that do a brilliant job - we dont need another LCD screen that is pretending to be a home cinema display.

As many people know one of my pet hates is...LCD screens! Everyday when working on peoples TVs it amazes me to see what sort of a picture people live with...
 

Badger0-0

Distinguished Member
What do you watch in the 'cinema' ---- a projector and we have loads of those that do a brilliant job - we dont need another LCD screen that is pretending to be a home cinema display.

As many people know one of my pet hates is...LCD screens! Everyday when working on peoples TVs it amazes me to see what sort of a picture people live with...

Hey, I totally agree with you Baldy, but you could say the same about Plasma too, to some extent, in that I've seen people run those at stupid levels too :thumbsdow

Unfortunately, PJs don't always suit the books, in my opinion :(
 

namuk

Distinguished Member
Will be interesting to see review on this as Nvidia have had a 2560 x 1080 screen out for a while, but not a 21.9 version out, they may of sold rights not sure ..

but that was a fast screen indeed:) if supported hardware is connected....

But even then it is hard to review a screen that av gear can not support to full extent ..
 

thechippy

Active Member
What do you watch in the 'cinema' ---- a projector and we have loads of those that do a brilliant job - we dont need another LCD screen that is pretending to be a home cinema display.

As many people know one of my pet hates is...LCD screens! Everyday when working on peoples TVs it amazes me to see what sort of a picture people live with...

At the moment I am looking to buy a new TV and as I mentioned before, I am a sucker for new technology so am lusting towards this at the moment. But, I am also looking at the KRP 600. What would be your choice or is there any other alternatives?

Thanks (from someone who needs to learn)
 

Razor

Distinguished Member
21:9 screens should of come out instead of 16:9 but the powers that be said it was too letterboxed. I would love to own a 21:9 display and get rid of the black bars. :)
 

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