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Philips Cinema 21:9 Gold Series LED TV to appeal to a ‘wider’ audience


March 8, 2011

Philips new Cinema 21:9 Gold Series LED TV

Philips new Cinema 21:9 Gold Series LED TV

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Anyone who thought making the switch from their old 4:3 analogue TV to a 16:9 widescreen digital model would mean the end of unsightly black bars at the top and bottom of the picture will likely have discovered otherwise – particularly if they also picked up a Blu-ray player along with the new TV. With most movies filmed in the wider 2.35:1 or 2.40:1 and many of these now available on Blu-ray, cinephiles are once again faced with the choice of viewing the entire image with black bars, or zooming or stretching the image so it fills the entire screen. The new Cinema 21:9 Gold Series LED TV from Philips solves this dilemma with its 21:9 aspect ratio allowing widescreen movies to be displayed in all their glory.

Until recently, cinephiles looking to enjoy a true home cinema experience have been forced to shell out for a projector and screen. This changed in 2009 when Philips released the world's first cinema-proportioned LCD TV. Few other manufacturers have pursued the 21:9 aspect ratio but Philips is persevering and is looking to bring the widescreen cinema experience to a 'wider' audience by expanding its 21:9 range with the 50-inch Cinema 21:9 Gold Series LED TV that adds 3D – of the passive variety using polarized glasses – and wireless Internet connectivity to the ultra-widescreen mix.

The Full HD TV boasts a 100 Hz refresh rate, LED backlighting and real-time 2D to 3D conversion, which Philips is introducing across its 3D range this year. In addition to standard split-screen 2D gaming, there's also a 3D gaming mode that allows two players to each enjoy full-screen 2D gaming on the one screen at the same time using 3D glasses.

The Cinema 21:9 Gold Series TV's Internet connectivity allows users to stream content from a mobile device and access online apps that provide access to on-demand movie download services, social networking sites and let users control the TV using a smartphone or tablet.

Philips' Ambilight Spectra 2 that projects light onto the surface behind the TV on two sides is also onboard, and to take advantage of the TV's ultra-wide proportions, Philips has also introduced a Multiview feature that allows viewing of multiple content sources, such as the Internet and live broadcast TV, at the same time. There's also a USB port for hooking up an external drive to record live TV.

Philips is yet to announce a release date or pricing for the 50-inch Cinema 21:9 Gold Series LED TV, but you can bet this kind of eye candy won't be cheap.

About the Author
Darren Quick Darren's love of technology started in primary school with a Nintendo Game & Watch Donkey Kong (still functioning) and a Commodore VIC 20 computer (not still functioning). In high school he upgraded to a 286 PC, and he's been following Moore's law ever since. This love of technology continued through a number of university courses and crappy jobs until 2008, when his interests found a home at Gizmag. All articles by Darren Quick

I think it would be so much simpler if all DVD\'s were made in 16:9 format. I have always had excelent periferal vision, yet the the advantages of 2.4:1 format have been lost on me. There is only so much field one can focus on at any given time.


I have never understood why TV makers ever released a 16:9 ratio in the first place. As a cinema service person I\'ve known all along 2.35:1 was the ratio for Panavision / Cinemascope and couldn\'t quite grasp the odd ratio available. Many folks may not realize the original TV ratio more closely followed the cinema 1.33:1. Perhaps they were assuming they could sell us on the more common cinema ratio of 1.85:1 ?

Tom Wyse

norand, you say you have excellent peripheral vision, then you say there is only so much field one can focus on at any given time. So how do you get on, when you walk around outdoors? There certainly is a lot to focus on out there. Surely that is the whole point of widescreen television, to be more like the real world? One thought on the Philips widescreen TV: what about the black bars at each side of the picture, when you watch a 4:3 format film? I know. You could have little curtains at the side of the screen, like you used to have in the cinema. These would open and close to accommodate the different films that were shown.


I like this idea. Even if only movies are 21:9, the spare screen real-estate can be used for OSD controls, program information or other functionality such as PIP

The next tivo or other media player technology will make good use of the extra screen space as already shown in the pictures of this article.

I am curious about the resolution of this screen as it could make for a great computer monitor.

Paul van Dinther

I always wanted to watch two 4:3 movies at once... my quest is at an end!

Irving Martinez
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