The Bravo D2
is a more-expensive update of the Bravo D1. The 480p/1080i/720p/custom scaling MPEG-4 DVD/media player adds control of brightness and contrast on DVI, enhanced DVD-ROM drive, and improved analog video output, as well as a new remote. Available in a titanium finish, the Bravo D2 will ship in February with an MSRP of $249.
Meanwhile the Bravo D3
, which will be available sometime in the April/June time frame for $349, is being touted by V as the first "DVD player with enhanced REALmagic HD deinterlacing and integrated Windows Media Player 9 HD decoding with HighMAT formatted playback." Powered by Sigma Designs' EM8620L on-chip processor, it's also the first player capable of playing MPEG-2, MPEG-4, and WMV9 in high definition. Audio decoding includes WMA9, WMA Pro, WMA lossless, Dolby Digital, MP3, MPEG-1/2 (layers 1, 2, and 3), and MPEG-4 AAC. In other words, if you're looking for a DVD player that will play just about any format thrown at it--and that has a DVI connection--this is one you should have your eye on. Visions of Visio and Velite
| | V's 50-inch P50HD plasma | |
V will also be unleashing an over-the-air HDTV receiver for $349, plus a wide variety of displays, including plasmas, small LCDs, and even a rear-projection DLP set. The standout in its Vizio line is the upcoming 50-inch HD plasma (P50HD
), which ships in April, has a native resolution of 1,366x768, and will retail for a semiaffordable $4,999.
The Velite line, geared toward the specialty retailer and custom installer markets, will initially include two plasma TVs, three LCD TVs, and the aforementioned DLP rear-projection HDTV. Powered by Texas Instruments' Mustang HD2 DMD, the 56-inch Velite 5600R will hit stores in March with a titanium silver finish and a price tag of $4,499. Comparably sized DLP sets from competing manufacturers such as Gateway will cost about the same. But all in all, this looks to be a good 2004 for V.