New Pioneer TVs, Components Go High End

dell takes a slice at apple with super thin latitude z dellz closed

Pioneer Electronics has apparently decided to rebrand itself, eschewing the mass market consumer electronics business and instead aiming at elite entertainment fanatics with money to burn. And to that end, the company is introducing a new Blu-ray player, a new set of AV receivers, and new flat-panel TVs all designed to appeal to customers who are very serious about their home entertainment.

“The DNA of our company stems directly from our engineers’ passion to design and manufacture the highest performing audio video equipment possible,” said Ken Shioda, Pioneer’s general manager for display business, in a release. “We refuse to compromise on quality in order to reach a mass audience. Instead we will allow our best-in-class engineers to develop products that can truly connect with human emotion, and can be fully appreciated.”

First up, the Pioneeer Elite BDP-94HD Blu-ray disc player offers HDMI connectivity, Dolby TrueHD and Dolby Digital Plus audio, and IP networking with a revamped user interface which lets users easily download new digital media. The BDP-94HD supports PlaysForSure, Windows Media Connect, and the Digital Living Network Alliance (DLNA) standards, and also supports HDMI Consumer Electronics Control (CEC), letting the system integrate with other CEC products for use with a single remote control. The BDP-94HD also sports a home networking feature which lets users tap into slideshows hosted on PCs accessible via a home network. Expect the BDP-94HD to land at retailers this month with a suggested price around $1,000.

Next, Pioneer has introduced four new AV receivers to its Elite line, the VSX-90TXV, VSX-91TXH, VSX-92TXH, and VSX-94TXH. The top three models support HDMI 1.3a and pass 1080p 24Hz video, while the VSX-92TXH and VSX-94TXH bother support Neural-THX Surround decoding. All four feature Advanced MCACC room tuning technology, sport direct inputs for iPods and XM Satellite Radio’s Connect & Play antenna, and are compatible with Sirius satellite radio. At the high end, the VSX-94TXH supports streaming music over a home network or from portable USB devices. The VSX-90TXV and VSX-91TXH should be available in June for about $600 and $1,000, respectively, but for the VSX-92TXH and VSX-94TXH consumers will have to wait until August and fork over $1,300 and $1,600, respectively.

Finally, Pioneer is also introducing eight new flat panel plasma television models ranging from 42 to 60 inches, and integrate what Pioneeer characterizes as “game-changing” performance and quality. Pioneer says it selected plasma because it offers the best black level reproduction, and, since black is the basis for all other colors displayed, that leads to more accurate color reproduction in the rest of the display in combination with Pioneers newly developed cell structure, crystal emissive layer, and filtering technologies. Pioneer also claims to have pumped up the audio quality in these displays, drawing on its years of experience with stereo and home theater systems, making it the first display producer to put a real emphasis on audio quality in its video product line.

“In the art world, a plain white canvas represents a blank slate waiting for an artist to create. In the world of television, a black screen is a similarly blank canvas ready for content to be displayed,” said Russ Johnston, senior vp of marketing and product planning for Pioneer. “Pioneer engineers reached a monumental achievement by creating black levels that are 80 percent deeper than previously possible—defining the ultimate ‘blank canvas’ ready for high definition movies, television and sporting events.”

The displays will go on sale from June through September at prices ranging from about $2,700 for the 42-inch XGA PDP-4280HD model through $7,500 for a 60-inch, 1080p Elite PRO-150FD. Here’s a complete list of Pioneer’s upcoming flat-panel TV offerings:

Brand Model Screen Size (Diagonal) Resolution Availability MSRP
Pioneer PDP-4280HD 42 inch XGA June $2,700
Pioneer PDP-5080HD 50 inch XGA June $3,500
Pioneer PDP-5010FD 50 inch 1080p September $5,000
Pioneer PDP-6010FD 60 inch 1080p September $6,500
Elite PRO-950HD 42 inch XGA July $3,200
Elite PRO-1150HD 50 inch XGA July $4,500
Elite PRO-110FD 50 inch 1080p September $6,000
Elite PRO-150FD 60 inch 1080p September $7,500

For the time being, Pioneer’s announcements are long on promises and relatively light on specifications, although we expect the company will release more detailed information and specifications as the products become available.

Product Review

The new iPad Mini isn’t a beauty, but it performs like a beast

Apple’s new iPad Mini has beastly performance, fluid iOS 12 software, and good battery life. It also looks like it came straight out of 2015, because the design hasn’t been changed. Here's our review of Apple’s 7.9-inch tablet.

Xbox One X vs. PS4 Pro: Which console is more powerful?

Far from cooling down, the console wars are only getting more intense. We compare Microsoft's Xbox One X to Sony's PlayStation 4 Pro to help you decide which premium console is right for you.
Product Review

The Lenovo Legion Y740 brings RTX 2080 graphics power for under $2,500

Coming with the Intel Core i7-8750H processor, Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Max-Q graphics, 16GB of RAM, and a 256GB PCIe NVMe SSD, the Legion Y740 one big beast. But priced at under $2,500 how does Lenovo’s Legion stand up against the crowd?

How do Nintendo Switch, Xbox One X compare to each other? We find out

The Nintendo Switch is innovative enough to stand apart from traditional consoles, but could it become your primary gaming system? How does the Switch stack up against the Xbox One?
Home Theater

Here’s what’s new on HBO and what’s leaving in April 2019

Whether you're a cable lifer or a staunch cord cutter, there's never been a better time to get down with premium TV. April 2019 brings Game of Thrones season 8, BlacKkKlansman, and Crazy Rich Asians to HBO.
Home Theater

Tipping point? Streaming subscribers outnumbered cable in 2018 for first time

2018 was a very good year for the entertainment business as a whole, but it was especially good for streaming companies like Netflix and Amazon, says a new report by the Motion Picture Association of America.
Home Theater

TCL drops the price of its 75-inch 6-Series 4K Roku TV to $1,500

March is a great time for TV deals, and we've got a whopper: TCL has taken $300 off the price of its superb 75-inch 6-Series 4K HDR Roku TV, making it $1,500. That's the lowest price ever on this affordable TV.
Movies & TV

Comcast launches Xfinity Flex, a $5-a-month service aimed at cord cutters

For $5 a month, Xfinity Flex gives existing Xfinity internet subscribers a 4K- and HDR-ready set-top box that can stream video from YouTube, Netflix, Hulu, as well as free TV from apps like Cheddar and ESPN3.
Home Theater

Here’s how to watch Apple’s March 25 product reveal event live

It's almost here: Apple's much anticipated March 25 event, where it is widely expected to announce several streaming services, including on-demand and live TV with original programming. Here's how to watch it live.
Movies & TV

HBO’s Deadwood movie rustles up a trailer and a release date

This spring, HBO's long-awaited Deadwood movie will explore what happened 10 years after the events of HBO's award-winning drama, giving the series a finale 13 years after the show was canceled.
Movies & TV

Apple’s next big event is set for March 25: Here’s what you can expect

Apple's next big event takes place on March 25 in Cupertino, California. The company is expected to make several announcements related to its services, including Apple TV, so follow our guide to get ready for the big event.
Home Theater

Kanopy privacy breach reveals which movies members have been streaming

Free video streaming site, Kanopy, has been inadvertently publishing millions of lines of web log data for days, according to a new security report. A bad actor could guess a person's identity and see what they've been watching.
Home Theater

March Madness deal alert: Get a 43-inch LG 4K HDR TV for just $270

March is a great time to find a deal on a new TV, and this one is worth every penny: Walmart is selling LG's 43-inch 43UK6300PUE, a very capable 4K HDR Smart TV, for almost 50 percent off the regular price, at $270.
Home Theater

How to connect your Roku device to your hotel room’s TV

Staying at a hotel, but can't bear to be parted from your favorite streaming shows and movies? Take them with you with our complete guide to using your Roku on the road when staying at a hotel.