As things hopefully approach normalcy this coming fall, Panasonic has announced the release of a variety of projectors, lenses, and software aimed at live event and education venues that are in the process of re-opening. With all the products, Panasonic aims at creating an immersive atmosphere for increased enjoyment and engagement.
The PT-RDQ10 series of projectors contains the 10,000 lumen RDQ10, 9,000 lumen RDQ90, and 8,000 lumen RDQ80 (all measured using the ISO/IEC 21118:2020 lumen standard). They use a single 0.66-inch 2716x1528 resolution DMD DLP chip to produce a 4K (3840x2160) image with the new Smooth Pixel Drive technology. This 1-axis wobbling technology shifts pixels diagonally by 0.5 pixels. Paired with Panasonic's new Rich Color Harmonizer technology that expands the ratio of red light, the two technologies aim to better display color (with more accurate white balance and skin tones) while smoothing jaggies for a clearer picture.
Thanks to the laser light engine and a liquid cooling system that the RDQ10 series inherited from Panasonic's 3-Chip DLP solutions, the PT-RDQ10 series will last up to 20,000 hours in Normal/Quiet mode or 24,000 hours in ECO mode before reaching half brightness. The supplied lens has a throw ratio range of 1.60-2.58:1 with powered zoom and focus and the projectors can be installed in a free 360-degree orientation for maximum flexibility. Additional optional lenses range from 0.277-0.296:1 up to 2.55-3.82:1.
Connections include two HDMI 2.0 with HDCP 2.3, multi-projector sync BNC in/out, RS-232C in/out for external control, a 3.5mm stereo mini-jack for a wired remote control, RJ-45 network connection, and USB. An NX-compatible expansion slot allows for a variety of interface boards that can add 12G-SDI in/outs, more HDMI, DVI-D, or DisplayPort. The PT-RDQ10 series will be available in October.
The new ET-D3QW200 is a short throw lens compatible with the PT-RQ50K 3-chip DLP 50,000 lumen projector. Panasonic developed it in collaboration with Illuminarium—a 360-degree center in Atlanta, Georgia that this summer is exhibiting the immersive WILD: The World's First Virtual Safari. The lens has a short 0.55-0.65:1 throw ratio and 1.18x zoom. It supports native 4K (4096x2160) and a screen size up to 1,500 inches. When used with the RQ50K handle attached, the vertical lens shift is -8 to +50 degrees (-50 to +50 degrees with the handle removed). If the lens were used to display a 350-inch image at 172 inches from the screen, a 5.57-foot viewer would be able to get 5.9 feet from the image without causing a shadow to be cast. The new lens is available now.
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To aid in monitoring and maintaining a large collection of projectors Panasonic has created their Early Warning and Control Software (EWS). It allows local or remote monitoring of a whole fleet of projectors to maintain consistent color, brightness, and blending. Illuminarium is using the software to ensure productions run smoothly and are prepared to launch as they expand to different venues across the US with planned openings in Las Vegas this coming winter and Miami the following fall.
The past year taught educators and educational institutions a lot about necessities for learning as we move forward from virtual and hybrid models. By partnering with Dr. Sonny Magana in the Project Moonshot initiative and using his T3 Framework for Innovation methodology, Panasonic can now provide AV tools. They help to actively engage students and improve their learning experience, be it virtual, hybrid, or in-person.
The new PT-MZ880 series of 3LCD projectors, a Best of Show Winner at ProjectorCentral's Projecton Expo 2021, has a laser light source that can last up to 20,000 hours in Normal/Quiet or 24,000 hours in ECO until they reach 50% brightness. With a native WUXGA (1920x1200) resolution, the projectors provide a bright and clear image in a relatively small 7.47 x 22.09 x 17.22 inch (HWD) package—an excellent combination for classrooms and lecture halls. The three projectors—the PT-MZ880, PT-MZ780, and PT-MZ680—provide 8,000, 7,000, and 6,000 ISO/IEC 21118:2020 lumens of brightness, respectively. With the supplied lens, the PT-MZ880 series of projectors have a 1.61-2.76:1 throw ratio and powered zoom and focus.
The projector series is capable of receiving 4K signals via DIGITAL LINK (HDBaseT compliant). They have three HDMI with HDCP 2.3 and CEC support, a 15-pin D-sub HD in/out, RS-232C multisync in/out, a 3.5mm stereo mini-jack for wired remote control or D-sub 9-pin in for external remote control, 3.5mm audio in/out, an RJ-45 for the aforementioned DIGITAL LINK, an RJ-45 for Ethernet, and a USB connector that can provide power. The PT-MZ880 are available now.
In September, Panasonic is a releasing the ET-ELU20—an ultra-short throw lens that is designed to work with the PT-MZ880 series of projectors and weighs 8.8 pounds. It's a zero-offset lens that has a throw ratio of 0.330-0.353:1 and a 1.07x zoom that can project an image from 100 to 400 inches diagonal. At only 4.69 feet from the screen, it can project a 200-inch 16:10 aspect ratio picture. Arriving one month earlier in August is the ET-EMU100, with the same throw ratio, zoom, and screen size capabilities as the ET-ELU20. It's made for the PT-MZ16KL series and weighs 15.9 pounds.
For more detailed specifications and connections, check out our Panasonic PT-MZ880BU projector page.