Standing in front of Sony's new fast-motion LCD, it's hard not to marvel at the smooth picture. But it was head-to-head with sets with less oomph. Again, I'm left to wonder if I'd notice the difference in my family room.
Sony unveiled the 52-inch set for the North American market at CEDIA, a Denver show for high-end electronics. You know, the kind that are bought by professional installers to go into commercial displays, $40,000 home theaters, and even yachts. It's a fun show for gawking at the cutting edge and dreaming of when it comes down enough in price for the rest of us.
So it is with the 240Hz screen, which refreshes twice as fast as today's high-end 120Hz screen. If you don't know what your LCD is, it's almost surely a mere 60Hz refresher. Anyone buying one of the faster screens is paying more and was likely sold on the marketing hype around 120Hz. Plus, they probably saw a simultaneous comparison at the store or elsewhere.
As I stare at the array of five Sony screens, I'm seeing footage designed to show off the difference in refresh rates. They include scenes with fast movement and camera pans, which themselves show off a whole other technology called "anti-judder."
Is 240Hz better than 120Hz? Yes. Will it be worth the undisclosed premium? It's hard to say. Sony hasn't hinted at the cost of the new tech, which will appear in only the 52-inch KDL-52XBR7. The screen is due in December.
Like so much else at CEDIA, I'm sure it will be too expensive for me. I can wait. In fact, the three-year-old plasma HDTV in my family room still looks pretty good.