V Inc.'s 46" Bargain PDP
Just a few months after Gateway broke the $3000 barrier for a 42" plasma display panel (PDP), V Inc. has introduced a widescreen 46" unit claimed capable of high-resolution performance – at a suggested retail of $3999. A 46" screen with a 16:9 aspect ratio is 20% larger than a 42".
The Fountain Valley, CA-based technology company is intent on making its presence felt in the home entertainment market; its Bravo D1 DVD player made its debut just a few months ago. Formerly known primarily for its computer displays, late last year V Inc. began offering affordable flat panel displays intended for home theater use. The company's latest introduction, the 46" Vizio P4, features DVI, RGB and component video inputs, a "legacy video" NTSC/PAL tuner, inboard stereo speakers, and fanless cooling for silent operation.
Capable of displaying 480p, 720p and 1080I, the Vizio P4 has a native resolution of 852 x 480 pixels, a specified contrast ratio of 800:1, and a 160-degree viewing angle. Users will appreciate the PDP's video processing, which offers 20x pan-zoom-freeze and an "optimal brightness mode" for proper adjustment when used for movies, TV, or computer graphics. Couch potatoes and sports fans will enjoy the picture-in-picture (PIP) feature, and movie fans will appreciate a "motion adaptive deinterlacing" feature that produces progressive scan images from standard definition content. A 3:2 pulldown circuit enables flicker-free playback of DVDs made from film originals. The P4 has four possible aspect ratios: 4:3 (legacy video), 16:9 (fullscreen), 4:3 to 16:9 ("stretch"), and "auto-detect anamorphic" (enhanced for widescreen TV).
The P4's inputs include computer RGB (VGA type 15-pin D-Sub), component video, S-video, composite video and standard RF. The DVI (Digital Video Interface) input allows direct digital connection to similarly equipped computers, HDTV set-top boxes and DVD players. DVI is said to "eliminate video scaling and noise artifacts introduced by unnecessary analog to digital conversion."
The Vizio P4 is only 3.2" deep, weighs 81.57 lbs. and comes with a one-year standard warranty on parts and labor.