Update 16 November 2008: We have now completed a full review of the Sony KDL-40W4500.
Sony has issued a press release today which introduces the forthcoming W4500 and X4500 series of Bravia LCD HDTVs, all of which will feature their proprietary Motionflow 100Hz motion-compensated frame interpolation (MCFI) technology in one form or another. Here we outline the differences between the new and the existing models.
The Sony KDL40W4500 is the next step up from their current multi-award-winning KDL40W4000 LCD television. The Sony W4500 range will offer the following extras over the W4000:
- Motionflow 100Hz technology
- Image Blur Reduction technology (probably frame interpolation with some algorithmic tweaks)
- Higher dynamic contrast ratio of 50,000:1 vs 33,000:1… hopefully this will translate into an even deeper black level than the already superb W4000
- DNLA media streaming capabilities, allowing you to view photos and listen to music from compatible networked devices
- Classier design: the linking bits from which the bottom speaker bar hangs seem to blend with the bezel more seamlessly
The Sony W4500 series will also be available in 46″ (KDL46W4500) and 52″ (KDL52W4500) screen sizes.
Note: In March 2008, the Sony Bravia W4500 series has been replaced by the W5500 series, for example the 40-inch KDL40W5500.
A direct replacement for the outgoing X3500, the X4500 series will become the flagship range of Sony Bravia LCD TVs. The smallest one in the range, the Sony KDL40X4500, is actually inferiorly-specced compared to its larger siblings, but still offers the following advantages over the X3500:
- Hopefully better video processing (Bravia Engine 2 Pro vs Bravia Engine Pro)
- One extra HDMI port (four vs three)
- DLNA media streaming
Here is where things really get interesting. The Sony KDL46X4500 and KDL55X4500 will be driven by RGB LED backlight, which – just like the Samsung F96 we reviewed last year – can dim down the light leakage from darker portions of the picture. This theoretically can allow the Sony KDL46X4500 and KDL55X4500 to achieve 0 cd/m2 true blacks… it’s no wonder that the dynamic contrast ratio for these LCD HDTVs has been quoted at an astounding 1,000,000:1.
The Sony KDL46X4500 and KDL55X4500 will also feature Motionflow PRO 100Hz technology (likely improved MCFI algorithm) and “backlight blinking” which is probably similar to Sharp’s [Action Mode] and Philips’ [Clear LCD] scanning backlight systems meant to reduce motion blur.
KDL46X4500 vs KDL40X4500 vs KDL40W4500
Here’s a table listing the key differences between these new models:
|Feature||X4500 (46″ & 52″)||40X4500||W4500|
|Screen Size (inch)||46, 55||40||40, 46, 52|
|Bravia Engine||BE 2 PRO||BE 2 PRO||BE 2|
|RGB LED Backlight||Yes||No||No|
|Dynamic Contrast Ratio||1,000,000:1||50,000:1||50,000:1|
|Assist Woofer||Yes (only 46″)||Yes||No|
Exact pricing details remain unknown, although they should start appearing on the UK market from September onwards.