Sony announced three new 4K projectors this week during CEDIA 2018 and while 4K is in itself a selling point, what is far more notable is these are “IMAX Enhanced” projectors. Which arguably means they are literally some of the best quality audio and picture projectors to date.
The reason for this is the IMAX Enhanced program in general. This was just announced this week at the same expo as a certification and licensing program for studios and manufacturers. The program is spearheaded by IMAX on the vision side along with DTS on the audio side and the general premise is any products that get the IMAX Enhanced stamp of approval, can be considered of a certain heightened quality. Sony was already confirmed as an early program partner by IMAX and all three of these projectors come with the IMAX Enhanced badge attached. Effectively, marking the arrival of some of the first IMAX Enhanced certified products so far. For reference, other IMAX Enhanced certified hardware is expected to come through in due course from Denon and Marantz.
Of the three new projectors, the Sony VPL-VW995ES is the most premium featuring an All Range Crisp Focus (ARC-F) 18-piece all-glass lens that is designed to provide high precision clarity throughout an image, a "Digital Focus Optimizer" for image quality correction, as well as a physical iris and a modulated laser. As for the price, the VPL-VW995ES is set to cost $34,999.99 and is due to arrive to market in November, 2018. In contrast, the VPL-VW695ES is more of a mid-range option which is set to cost $9,999.99 when it becomes available in October, and among other things, allows users to very quickly adjust the format to match any screen, as well as a high dynamic contrast of 350,000:1. Lastly, the VPL-VW295ES marks the entry-level option which looks to build upon popular features from last year’s models, including up to 1,500 lumens of brightness, as well as the use of Motionflow to reduce motion blur. In terms of the price, the VPL-VW295ES is the most affordable option coming in at $4,999.99, and is also set to arrive in October in the US and Canada.