Sony Introduces a New Line-Array Speaker and Laser Projectors—What to Know

A boardroom of coworkers using the Sony 3LCD laser projector for a presentation.
(Image credit: Sony)

Sony introduced two new products at its 2022 AV Tech Expo in New York City.  The SLS-1A is a line-array speaker designed for use with large displays and the VPL-PHZ61 and VPL-PHZ51 are compact 3LCD laser projectors.

Here's what you need to know about each.

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The Sony VPL-PHZ61 and VPL-PHZ51 3LCD Laser Projectors

The white model of the new Sony 3LCD laser projector.

(Image credit: Sony)

The VPL-PHZ61 and VPL-PHZ51 combine advanced operational capabilities with high brightness and flexible installation, making them a reliable option for a wide range of corporate, education, museum, entertainment, and simulation applications.

The VPL-PHZ61 and VPL-PHZ51 are compact and easy to install on ceilings in meeting rooms and classrooms with a +55% vertical shift. Both sophisticatedly designed models boast impressive high brightness—the VPL-PHZ61 at 6,400 lumens (7,000 lumen center) and the VPL-PHZ51 at 5,300 lumens (5,800 lumen center)—that project crystal-clear images, even in a well-lit meeting room or lecture hall to enhance the collaboration and communication of users.

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With the incorporation of Sony’s Reality Creation real-time signal processing, mapping and analysis technology, the projectors produce crisp and clear pictures, for effective presentation and display. Both new models support 4K60P input for compatibility with 4K video sources. This is further amplified by Reality Creation’s ability to enhance the overall sharpness, resolution, and quality of the imagery, regardless of whether it’s pictures, graphs or text. Additionally, the projectors require no converter when being used with other 4K equipment to simultaneously project 4K content and support the “Deep Color” of HDMI and the HDCP2.3. The projectors’ Reality Text feature improves text-based presentation materials by providing clearer letters and lines with enhanced legibility.

The projectors also feature advanced Intelligent Settings, which offer optimization based on usage environment. The addition of customized Bright View functionality enables colors to accurately maintain their contrast and vivacity, even in brightly lit rooms. The new Ambiance feature automatically measures the room’s brightness using an ambient light sensor, and further calibrates the Bright View, color gain and Reality Creation settings accordingly. Additionally, the new models use a new filter material which requires no filter cleaning for meeting room and classroom use.

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“Many of our customers struggle to find display solutions that provide both exceptional high brightness and sophisticated features that can enhance their content and overall user experience,” said Rich Ventura, vice president of B2B, Sony Electronics. “We don’t want our customers to compromise on any of these asks, which is why we’ve built upon our existing legacy in developing feature-rich laser projectors, to provide compact and advanced projectors to the market. These projectors really are world-class in their technology, quality, and design.”

3 Things to Know about the SLS-1A Compact Speaker

The black model of the new Sony line-array speaker.

(Image credit: Sony)

Sony Electronics’ new high-performance line-array speaker, the SLS-1A, is purpose-built to create new sound field coverage when paired with large format displays. It is ideal for education, corporate, retail and faith applications. The speaker solves common pain points for large and medium spaces with large format display, for example unfavorable acoustics and architectural challenges, intelligibility, separation of visuals and sound, and the inability to create a listening experience prioritized for each participant.

“This powerful new line-array speaker offers superior, intelligible, localized audio,” said Ventura. “As a company with a rich history in sound, we’re looking forward to putting the audio back into AV with a solution that prioritizes sonic quality. We did our homework with the launch of the SLS-1A, deliberately developing and designing an immersive product that enhances listeners’ experiences and solves customers’ acoustic challenges related to uniform sound distribution, modularity and installation.”

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1. Wide Sweet Spot to Accommodate Large Displays

One key feature of this new modular bar-style speaker is its wide sweet spot, which creates a clear sound field in larger spaces. With its compact and modular design, the newly developed SLS-1A is equipped with Sony’s unique speaker technology, in addition to an onboard DSP (digital signal processor) and power amplification providing 80W total per module. Through this design, the SLS-1A not only suppresses the sound distortion, but also enables beam steering which controls the direction and angle of sound delivery with a high degree of accuracy. This combination of technologies and set-up options delivers a sound system that is effective not only for voice, but also for content playback, to create a uniform sound pressure and quality in large listening areas.

2. Flexible Installation with Compact Size

Packing eight channels of AMP/DSP into a rigid aluminum casing, the SLS-1A can be aligned vertically or horizontally, which boosts its flexibility and multiplies its potential installations in different environments and configurations. Its modular approach means that several speakers can be added to the system through a single Dante connection, while flexible fine beam control optimizes audio and allows the SLS-1A to meet the requirements of multiple installation spaces, including lecture halls and office lobbies. Additionally, the modular solution offers a simplified design that incorporates fewer components which can reduce installation times and costs.

3. Center Screen Sound Localization

This specially designed speaker features center screen sound localization technology using horizontally placed speaker arrays to create a “phantom” center channel effect, making it well suited to large displays where center channel localization is challenging due to speaker position.  It also creates a uniform sound experience no matter where a viewer is positioned. The SLS-1A is designed to be paired with multiple large format display types, including Crystal LED, BRAVIA 4K Professional Displays, as well as business projectors to create a connected AV ecosystem.

The AVNetwork staff are storytellers focused on the professional audiovisual and technology industry. Their mission is to keep readers up-to-date on the latest AV/IT industry and product news, emerging trends, and inspiring installations.