After more than a generation of home theater being a thing, two companies — IMAX and DTS — have combined to create the first single certification for both home theater video and audio gear called IMAX Enhanced.
5 innovative new TV technologies you need to know about
We’re enjoying an embarrassment of riches when it comes to TV technology right now. Whether it’s the panel you’re looking at (OLED, LED and QLED all offer fantastic-looking pictures) or the content you want to watch (4K streaming and Ultra HD Blu-rays mean consumers now have a choice of where to get their high-quality content), we’ve never had it so good.
Denon & Marantz Reveal First IMAX Enhanced Audio Components
IMAX Enhanced capabilities will be available for all three components as part of a free firmware update in early 2019. The IMAX Enhanced certification & licensing program is designed to offer premium 4K HDR and immersive audio performance across home theater gear and content.
IMAX Targets The Living Room With New Video And Hardware ‘Standard’ [UPDATED]
Anyone who’s visited an IMAX cinema knows what a difference the format can make to the movie experience. Its huge format picture and cutting edge sound immerses you in the world of what you’re watching far more than a typical cinema set up. So AV fans will be excited to hear that IMAX is now turning its focus on the home cinema experience too.
‘IMAX Enhanced’ promises the highest quality 4K in your living room
Today, IMAX announced a new program called IMAX Enhanced, which was launched in partnership with DTS. It’s a certification and licensing program that will allow users to play the highest quality 4K images and most powerful audio in the comfort of their own home.
The program is launching with partners such as Sony Electronics, Sony Pictures, Paramount Pictures and Sound United on board. In order to be accepted into IMAX Enhanced, manufacturers must design home theater equipment “to meet a carefully prescribed set of the highest audio and video performance standards, set by a certification committee of IMAX and DTS engineers and Hollywood’s leading technical specialists,” according to the release.
These enhanced devices will also have an “IMAX Mode” built in. This will optimize whatever you’re watching to the standards that the filmmaker originally intended, all from the comfort of your home. IMAX and DTS are working with studios and content partners to digitally remaster popular movies and other content for IMAX Mode.
“While the IMAX theatrical experience continues to be the gold standard in blockbuster movie-going, today we are launching an exciting new program that applies components of IMAX’s and DTS’ technology and expertise to deliver consumers a level of quality never before experienced at home,” said IMAX CEO Richard L. Gelfond in a release. The program will launch beginning this fall.
Sony goes big on IMAX Enhanced with new projectors and certified flagship TVs
There are tons of huge announcements coming out of the CEDIA 2018 expo, but one of the most exciting is the IMAX Enhanced program, a collaboration between IMAX and DTS that certifies all sorts of A/V gear to promise that they deliver the best audio and visual experience possible. Denon and Marantz announced earlier this week that they would ship IMAX Enhanced A/V receivers, and now Sony is embracing the program as well with announced support in recent TVs as well as the debut of three new IMAX Enhanced projectors.
The true star of the new projectors is the VPL-VW995ES, which uses the All Range Crisp Focus (ARC-F) lens, an 18-piece glass lens that makes for the crispest picture possible. This model also includes a Digital Focus Optimizer that Sony says provides heightened image quality and focus without distortion. This is one of Sony’s most powerful projectors to date, pumping out up to 2,200 lumens of brightness.
While the aforementioned model may be the top of the line, the VPL-VW695ES will be of more interest to your standard home enthusiast as it is dramatically more affordable, yet still pricey and very high quality. This model boasts 1,800 lumens of brightness and a 350,000:1 contrast ratio. It also comes with features like Picture Position Memory, allowing the user to quickly adjust the image to fit their screen, including 16:9 and Cinemascope.
Finally, the VPL-VW295ES is Sony’s most affordable 4K projector, and does still deliver high dynamic range (HDR), as all of these new projectors do. This model features 1,500 lumens of brightness and comes with many of the features found on the more expensive models. Both this model and the VPL-VW695ES are compact, making them easy to install and use.
Sony also announced IMAX Enhanced certification for many of its recent flagship TVs. The Master Series, which was priced last week, is among these, with the A9F OLED and Z9F both certified. The older A8F Bravia and A1E Bravia, as well as the X900F, are certified as well.
None of these newly announced projectors come cheap. The VPL-VW295ES, the most affordable of the above models, retails for $5,000, while the step-up VPL-VW695ES will sell for $10,000. The top-of-the-line VPL-VW995ES sells for $35,000, meaning it will only be of interest to those who take their home theater experience very seriously.