HTSA Hosts 3D Retail Demo in NYC
The HTSA buying group hosted a 3D retail demonstration at New York City’s Stereo Exchange Dec. 18 – coincidentally, on the very date of the worldwide theatrical opening of the $500 million 3D blockbuster Avatar.
HTSA members who have already held 3D demos include Florida’s Absolute Sound and Northern California’s Paradyme Sound & Vision. The group is also planning to sponsor a 3D demo in the L.A. area in the near future.
“The idea is to show people that there are many levels to participation in both the 3D experience and in home control,” said David Berman, HTSA director of training. Vendors on hand included Mitsubishi, Digital Projection and new Stereo Exchange vendor Control4, whose technologies now have a dedicated room at the store. “At the 2009 CEDIA Expo, the number of 3D exhibits were triple what they were at CES 2009. We saw that the writing’s on the wall for 3D, and HTSA and its membership have to be involved, because this is the next tech revolution,” he said in explaining the group’s pro-active stance on the technology. “By 2010, you’ll see a significant increase in the number of 3D-enabled TVs, and at least 100 titles by year end, and probably 60, minimum, of the top high-performance gaming systems will be 3D-enabled.”
In one of Stereo Exchange’s theaters, Digital Projection’s Michael Bridwell, marketing communications manager, ran the $84,000 TITAN Reference 1080p Dual Projector through its 3D paces, calling the picture performance “the ultimate 3D home theater experience.”
Mitsubishi, for its part, used this venue to demonstrate 3D in two of the areas of the store. In one section, a series of 3D movie trailers played on its rear-projection DLP 82-inch 3D-ready TV, which director of product development David Naranjo said is the largest commercial 3D-ready display available today, and is available for less than $5,000. In another area, a 65-inch Mitsubishi 3D-ready TV was set up with a self-demo merchandising kiosk that Naranjo said is already deployed in about 150 stores including PC Richard & Son, Fry’s, Ultimate Electronics, Ken Crane’s, Sixth Avenue Electronics and Electronics Expo, and in some Best Buy Magnolia Home Theater outlets. The kiosk setup include four pairs of NVIDIA gaming-optimized 3D glasses tethered to the display by long cords. A red button, when pressed, switches content on the screen to 2D and a green button changes the content to 3D. The company also offers 60- and 73-inch 3D-ready DLP TVs and the 3D-ready 65-inch LaserVue TV.