Representatives from Hitachi America’s Digital Media Division were in New York City last week to provide an up-close look at some of the company’s newest projectors. A few of these may seem familiar—if you were at the InfoComm Expo in June, you may have seen the prototypes—but it’s worth taking another look, as they’re now shipping.
As a response to customer feedback, Hitachi created the CP-AW250N Ultimate Short Throw projector. Improving ease of installation and image quality while minimizing shadows on the screen with a shorter throw distance (22 inches at an 80-inch screen), the CP-AW250N also reduces the total cost of ownership. Another highlight is increased connectivity: the CP-AW250N features wired networking, and Hitachi’s Messenger function enables users to transmit text data to multiple projectors on the network. The projector is equipped with a new microphone input. It also includes new USB connectivity, giving users the ability to easily and quickly deliver contents from a PC via a USB cable. Keep an eye out for more interactive projectors for the classroom coming in the first quarter of 2011.
The focus on connectivity continues with the Full HD Series CP-WUX645 3LCD projector. The CP-WUX645 provides an HDMI input allowing for the transmission of uncompressed digital audio/video streams, as well as an RGB port, BNC, Component, S-video, and Composite connectivity. The Picture by Picture functionality allows users to simultaneously project images from two separate sources, side by side. The CP-WUX645 can display 1080p content and more, while offering a brightness of 4,200 ANSI lumens, and like the CP-AW250N it features Perfect Fit technology, which enables precise adjustment of the projected image by providing the ability to move the four corners individually.
One focus of Hitachi’s recent projectors has been on filter improvement. “We don’t believe getting away from filters in projectors is the right direction,” said John Glad, product manager, Hitachi America, Digital Media Division, Business Solutions Group. New hybrid filters have a layered design that makes the projectors more dust resistant and allow for approximately 5,000 hours between maintenance, depending on the environment.
For portable applications, the CPX8 3LCD video projector weighs less than five pounds and measures 12 inches wide by 8.7 inches deep by 3 inches high, making it easy to carry and use in different locations. The hot air exhaust has been moved to the front of the projector, directing heat away from the audience in a small space. Based on what’s been popular in the education market, a customizable “blank button” has been positioned on the top of the projector for instant control.
Hitachi’s CP-X4021N Collegiate Series projector is aimed at education, but will integrators explore its potential in the digital signage market?
Hitachi’s Collegiate Series video projectors include three 3LCD models (CP-WX4021N, CP-X5021N, and CP-X4021N) designed for higher education market. The 1.7x zoom allows for longer throw distances, providing more flexibility but the potential for more obstructions, which is why a lens shift functionality is included. Networking capabilities include remote control via a LAN network connection, and Hitachi’s PJMan Projector Management software gives instructors and administrators the ability to monitor and operate any network-connected projector from a remote location, and receive diagnostic information.
The Collegiate Series was on display at InfoComm, where Hitachi showed how the projectors can be stacked to highlight their 3D capabilities. Perhaps not ideal for most classrooms currently, these stackable projectors offer another possible market to integrators: digital signage. The projectors in the series deliver up to 5,000 ANSI lumens each with a 2000:1 contrast ratio, and provide networking capabilities. With the combined brightness and ease of use for the customer, it seems like a viable option for many digital signage projects.
Have you considered using projectors in a digital signage application? Let us know at the SCN LinkedIn discussion, and see what others think about the idea.