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Laser projectors take center stage at ShowEast

Oct 21, 2013

-By Carolyn Giardina


Addressing complaints that theatre screens, especially when showing a 3D movie, are too dark, the digital cinema industry has been exploring laser-illuminated projection technology. And some of these new developments will be highlighted at theatre owners confab ShowEast, which starts Monday at the Westin Diplomat & Spa in Hollywood, Fla.

Proponents say laser light can also offer lower operating costs, reduced power consumption compared to the xenon lamps currently in use and increase systems' lifespan. However, others believe the cost of this technology could be a barrier to entry along with regulatory issues because the FDA monitors the use of lasers.

To address these issues, projector maker NEC plans to demonstrate a new laser-light source projector aggressively priced at $38,000 and targeted to exhibitors with small screens up to 36 ft. Scheduled to become available in March, the new NC1100L 2K projector is being developed to offer brightness of 14-ft-L (using a 1.8 gain screen) with 10,000 lumens of light—a low enough number that the projector won't require FDA approval.

Jim Reisteter, general manager of digital cinema at NEC Display Solutions, believes this can be an attractive option with its “aggressive” price and a projected “20,000 hours of expected light source usage.” In particular, he is looking toward Latin America, where many screens still need to covert to digital, as well as the U.S. as key markets for the technology.

For larger screens, NEC is working through a partnership with Laser Light Engines to develop an option for large screens (70 ft. or higher), that will involve retrofitting any NEC Series 2 projector. At this point, that option would need FDA approval; the technology will be demonstrated in Los Angeles during the week of Nov. 11.

On Wednesday at ShowEast, Christie and Dolby are teaming up for a demonstration featuring Christie’s prototype 4K laser projector, fronted by a RealD XL Cinema System and accompanied by Christie Vive Audio speakers and amplifiers configured for Dolby Atmos.

Last summer Christie announced that it received a US FDA approval of a variance allowing the sale of these laser projectors for use in a cinema. The first is scheduled to be installed in Seattle's Cinerama Theatre in early 2014.
Barco has already developed a prototype laser projector, but the company believes the economics don’t work at this stage.

Similarly Sony is developing a laser projector, though its execs have stated that the company believes the market is still several years away.
—The Hollywood Reporter


Laser projectors take center stage at ShowEast

Oct 21, 2013

-By Carolyn Giardina


Addressing complaints that theatre screens, especially when showing a 3D movie, are too dark, the digital cinema industry has been exploring laser-illuminated projection technology. And some of these new developments will be highlighted at theatre owners confab ShowEast, which starts Monday at the Westin Diplomat & Spa in Hollywood, Fla.

Proponents say laser light can also offer lower operating costs, reduced power consumption compared to the xenon lamps currently in use and increase systems' lifespan. However, others believe the cost of this technology could be a barrier to entry along with regulatory issues because the FDA monitors the use of lasers.

To address these issues, projector maker NEC plans to demonstrate a new laser-light source projector aggressively priced at $38,000 and targeted to exhibitors with small screens up to 36 ft. Scheduled to become available in March, the new NC1100L 2K projector is being developed to offer brightness of 14-ft-L (using a 1.8 gain screen) with 10,000 lumens of light—a low enough number that the projector won't require FDA approval.

Jim Reisteter, general manager of digital cinema at NEC Display Solutions, believes this can be an attractive option with its “aggressive” price and a projected “20,000 hours of expected light source usage.” In particular, he is looking toward Latin America, where many screens still need to covert to digital, as well as the U.S. as key markets for the technology.

For larger screens, NEC is working through a partnership with Laser Light Engines to develop an option for large screens (70 ft. or higher), that will involve retrofitting any NEC Series 2 projector. At this point, that option would need FDA approval; the technology will be demonstrated in Los Angeles during the week of Nov. 11.

On Wednesday at ShowEast, Christie and Dolby are teaming up for a demonstration featuring Christie’s prototype 4K laser projector, fronted by a RealD XL Cinema System and accompanied by Christie Vive Audio speakers and amplifiers configured for Dolby Atmos.

Last summer Christie announced that it received a US FDA approval of a variance allowing the sale of these laser projectors for use in a cinema. The first is scheduled to be installed in Seattle's Cinerama Theatre in early 2014.
Barco has already developed a prototype laser projector, but the company believes the economics don’t work at this stage.

Similarly Sony is developing a laser projector, though its execs have stated that the company believes the market is still several years away.
—The Hollywood Reporter

More Technology and New Products

Giant Screen Conference to feature laser projection demo

A special technical session of the Giant Screen Cinema Association conference will feature the first large-scale projection demo using a 90,000-lumens Christie 6P laser projection system More »

ICTA names USL Manufacturer of the Year

USL, Inc. received the prestigious Teddy Award as the Manufacturer of the Year More »

ICTA holds Summer Business Retreat in Washington

The International Cinema Technology Association held its annual Summer Business Retreat in Washington, D.C. More »

Southern Theatres' Movie Tavern 8 installs Christie Vive Audio and Solaria projectors

Southern Theatres completed its second “all Christie” entertainment complex at the new Movie Tavern 8 in Covington, Louisiana More »

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