Friday, October 27, 2006

PS3 To Debut HDMI 1.3.

Announced back in June, the HDMI 1.3 format apparently more than doubles HDMI's bandwidth and adds support for a broader color space, new digital audio formats, automatic audio/video synching capability, and an optional smaller connector for use with portable devices such as digital still cameras and camcorders. So why should gamers care? The first HDMI 1.3 machine on the market will be PlayStation 3 in November.

In December we'll see an HD-DVD player from Toshiba and a 1080p projector from Epson that uses the new technology. But HDMI backers expect the format to expand throughout 2007.

"Reports from manufacturers indicate that most Blu-ray Disc and HD-DVD players, and a substantial proportion of conventional DVD players, will include HDMI 1.3 capabilities in 2007," said Leslie Chard, president of HDMI Licensing. "During the first half of 2007 we expect to see HDTVs with HDMI 1.3 functionality, allowing them to display Deep Color content. We also expect the introduction during 2007 of HDMI 1.3 technology for PCs, audio-visual receivers and a range of other source and display devices".

The HDMI group is touting "Deep Color" technology of the new format, claiming it increases the number of colors onscreen from millions to billions, increases contrast ratio, and smoothes out gradations between colors.

HDMI 1.3 also supports Dolby TrueHD, which is a 100% lossless audio format. Its compression capabilities take up less resources than other audio formats to allow for more video and audio punch and more special features on a disc without compromising audio quality.

As great as all of this sounds, it's probably going to tough for the average consumer to tell the difference with Sony's HDMI upgrade. But at least they're staying true to their credo of forward looking technology in the PS3.


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