New Entry Level VPL-E Series for Education and Business Applications
Sony is expanding its family of entry-level LCD front projectors with four new models, including its first compact widescreen version. Each is designed for commercial applications, and specifically suited for use in classrooms and conference rooms.
The new projectors represent the latest generation of Sony’s VPL-E series. They range from the VPL-EX50 model with 2500 lumens to the VPL-EW5 widescreen, VPL-EX5 and VPL-ES5 models all with 2000 lumens each.
“This lineup is entry level in name only,” said John Kaloukian, director of Sony Electronic’ professional display group. “They deliver all the features needed for quality presentations and commercial use — brightness, quiet operation, a variety of interfaces — and combine them with ease of use and affordability. They’re really entry-level projectors with advanced projector capabilities.”
The VPL-EX50 and VPL-EX5 models offer native XGA 1024 by 768 resolution, while the VPL-ES5 unit features SVGA 800 by 600 resolution. For widescreen projection, the VPL-EW5 model has WXGA 1280 by 800 resolution. The design of each model’s body shape broadens towards the front, and each automatically projects images upwards on the screen, requiring minimal tilt adjustment.
Each projector comes equipped with a short focal-length lens that allows large-screen projection from a very short distance, ideal for smaller meeting rooms or classrooms. For example, an 80-inch (viewable area, measured diagonally) image can be projected from a distance of approximately 7.5 feet by the VPL-EX50, VPL-EX5 and VPL-ES5 models, and 8.2 feet by the VPL-EW5 projector.
The new projectors use a combination of two imaging technologies. First, 3LCD technology is designed to make projected images brighter and more natural. The technology provides high light transmission, excellent color reproduction and smooth gradients in dark areas. It even helps to prevent color break-up.
Complementing this in the VPL-EX50, VPL-EX5 and VPL-EW5 models is Sony’s BrightEra technology, which is based on an inorganic alignment layer that produces a stronger bonding of molecules. This makes the panel more resistant to damage from UV rays and increases light resistance. As a result, brightness and panel reliability are increased.
The projectors allow presentations to begin quickly and end just as fast. The time from power-up to display of the first image is only about four seconds. When finished, presenters can use Sony’s “Off-and-Go” feature to simply turn the projector off and unplug the AC power cord, without waiting for the fan to turn off.
In addition to simplicity, business environments often require increased security. The new models have a control panel key lock and a password authentication system to help limit unauthorized use, and a built-in security bar and Kensington lock to help prevent theft.
A variety of interfaces include monitor output, audio output and RS-232C control (on the VPL-EW5, EX50 and EX5 only). The series also accepts standard- and high-definition video input signals, including composite, S-Video (Y/C), and analog RGB/component via the HD D-sub 15-pin interface.
The VPL-EW5 model also has a High-Definition Multimedia Interface (HDMI) for digital video projection. It can accept computer signals from VGA up to SXGA+ (1400 x 1050).
Additional features of the new VPL-E series models include: a Remote Commander unit, digital zoom (up to 4x), image freeze, six picture modes, dynamic detail enhancer for video signals, Smart APA (Auto Pixel Alignment), vertical keystone adjustment, multi-language OSD, picture muting, direct power on/off, a front exhaust system, low power consumption (3W standby power), and a ceiling-mount option.
Expected availability and suggested list prices for the new projectors are as follows: