Hitachi CES Highlights

Hitachi is still firmly behind plasma technology, and its new 42in 1080p screen looks like a winner.

Hitachi was one of two manufacturers to show off a 42in 1080p plasma screen – the other was Panasonic. You may be wondering what is so special about a 42in 1080p screen, but in reality this is a very impressive achievement due to the nature of plasma.

Up until recently the only way to have a Full HD 1,920 x 1,080 plasma screen was to make it huge, due to the size of the plasma chambers. A few months back we saw 50in 1080p plasmas appear, which involved significantly reducing the plasma chambers – no mean feat in itself. So managing to reduce the size of the plasma chambers again to create a 42in screen is very impressive indeed.

Hitachi’s new range of 1080p plasmas are finished in the now ubiquitous piano black, with a slim bezel and a discrete speaker bar mounted below the screen. The 42in prototype on the Hitachi stand definitely looked good, but Hitachi couldn’t confirm launch date or pricing. One thing that the product manager was happy to tell me was that 42in is likely to be the smallest 1080p plasma size, with LCD handling the market below this size.

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