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CES: Sharp shows off 65-inch LC HDTV

And lots more besides

Sharp Electronics will release a liquid crystal high-definition TV (LC HDTV) wider than 50in some time this year, a company executive said yesterday at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas.

The company will show a 65in model of its Aquos LC HDTV when the convention floor opens today, but refuses to specify whether this is the model set for release.

While he wouldn't say if the 65in Aquos is the LC HDTV that will be out this year, the company is billing that set as the largest LC HDTV in the world – for now, at least. It will come with a CableCard slot so that US cable subscribers can get high-definition television without a set-top box. Although other details of the new Aquos were not provided in advance of the official opening of CES on Thursday, Sharp did say that it will be displayed at the show in two "stunning" finishes – titanium and "piano black".

Like other vendors at CES this week, the company is forecasting a sharp drop in the price of HDTVs this year, saying it expects its sales to nearly double those of last year in the hotly competitive market. More than 70 companies offer HDTVs in the US, where the Consumer Electronics Association forecasts sales of 9m HDTVs this year.

Besides the 65in Aquos LC-HDTV, Sharp announced and will be showing two new widescreen sizes of DLP (digital light processing) rear-projection HDTVs, a 56in version due out in March for $3,299.95 (£1,760) and a 65-inch version out in May for $3,799.95 (£2,030).

The company also announced:

  • Aquos GA5U series HDTV monitors in 26in and 32in models with fixed side speakers; a 37in Aquos LC HDTV with fixed side speakers and WXGA (wide extended graphics array) resolution of 1366x768, the company's proprietary Advanced Super View LCD Panel and a TFT (thin film transistor) coating to decrease glare

  • An Aquos D7U-D5U series LD HDTVs that will have 1366x768 resolution and come with a CableCard slot and an enhanced interactive program guide and video circuitry.

  • Aquos B9U-B8YU series TVs, which range in size from 13in to 20in and have high brightness so they can be near light sources and still have a clear picture.

  • Two new models in the Aquos S4U series. The series includes an optical picture control function that automatically adjusts the TV brightness depending on the room's ambient light.

  • An all-in-one audio home theatre system, the HT-X1, with a flat design for placement in a narrow space or to be mounted on a wall. The single-disc system will have multiple format playback, including DVD, DVD-video, CD, CD-R/RW and MP3.

  • A vertical format 1-bit home theatre system for use with flat-panel TVs.

  • A new bookshelf audio system offering 220W and a multicolour fluorescent display.

  • A progressive-scan combination DVD player-recorder and VCR that lets users record TV shows straight to DVD or transfer home videos from VCR to DVD.

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