CES 2008: JVC Media Event

by: Dan -
GamingNexus was extended an invite to the JVC press event on Tuesday morning, which I was able to attend to see the 2008 JVC lineup. There were many things introduced including camcorders, but we were prominently looking at the Televisions and Audio products (headphones and shelf systems).

One of the main things JVC launched was a new series of super-slim LCD TVs, billed as the thinnest on the market with built-in HD tuners. The LT-42SL89 and LT-46SL89 measure less than 2.9 inches at their thickest point, have thin bezels, sport 1920x19080p resolution and will be VESA compliant, although JVC will offer matched mounting solutions. Having a chance to observe the sets up close, they are incredible thin and quite impressive in both their appearance and the quality of the image on the screen. The LT-42SL89 and LT-46SL89 will be available in Summer 2008, with pricing expected to be announced at the same time.

Probably the coolest product JVC introduced were the integrated LCD TVs with a TeleDock for iPods. The docks are built into the facade of the whole line of LCD televisions, which includes three with full 1080p. The iPod docked allows for on-screen info such as song title and artist, and a small screen mode (among 10 total aspect modes) to assist with the playback of low-resolution images. The iPod will charge while docked and it can also play audio while the TV is showing programming. The JVC P-Series that has the TeleDock will feature four models with sizes of 32” (720p - March 08), 42” (1080p – March 08), 47” (1080p – April 08) and 52” (1080p – Summer 08). In addition to the iPod dock, the P-Series features a side USB port, three HDMI inputs and two Component inputs.

In the audio and home theater department, JVC had several new shelf systems that were being introduced. The flagship is the TH-F3, which offers simple hookup with an elegant, compact package. The 4.1 system features an iPod dock, DVD player with upconvert and 1080p up-conversion, USB host and DiVX playback. The speaker design is unique, as the front speakers handle both the main (center) playback as well as the front surround playback. In addition, the unit sports a subwoofer with a 6.5” driver. The TH-F3 is slated for a May release with an MSRP of $500.

The remainder of the home theater solutions were the THG30, THL1, THG40, all various incarnations of the integrated home theater solution with built in DVD players and HDMI output with up conversion. I spent quite a bit of time playing Burnout Revenge using the THL1 (designed for gaming) as the surround system. For being a compact all-in-one home theater, it packed quite a punch. The sound was clear and loud and enhanced the game play quite well, especially in the takedown scenes. This is probably one of the better systems I have heard that are so compact.

The Procision lineup of LCD televisions featured full 1080p sets with the 120Hz refresh technology built in. They are available in a 42”, 47” and 52” screen sizes and will be available in late spring exclusively at JVC Procision dealers. I was very impressed with these sets, as some of the 120Hz technology that is currently available isn’t as good as it could be. These were as smooth as any I had seen to that point.

In their emerging technology area, JVC showcased a motion sensing television, as well as a 180Hz refresh TV and a LED backlit LCD. All of these had their own unique and incredible characteristics. The motion sensing set allowed hand gestures to operate basic options such as channel changing and power. The 180Hz Clear Motion Drive TV was simply phenomenal and provided me with one of those moments on the show floor where you let out a low whistle and say “Wow!” As for the backlit LED LCD (image below with the rose on-screen), this was another product that I couldn’t help but stare at. The black levels were incredible compared to basic LCD and the brightness of the picture was off the charts. I hope this technology makes it from the tech center to the retail floor in the next year, as it all will make any TV experience better.

Check out all the images from the JVC Showcase after the jump:
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