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Christmas Gift Guide

Sony's 4K Ultra Short Throw Projector: Your wall as TV screen

Projector as credenza

4K laser projector

Matt Damon's stubble, rendered in stunning 4K resolution

Part of Sony's Life Space UX collection

Under the sea

One night in Paris

From mirror to...

Touch-screen display

Table projection

Start manipulating, Tom Cruise-style

Not coming soon

Also not coming soon

One of Sony's big reveals at CES 2014 was the 4K Ultra Short Throw Projector, which turns your wall into a 147-inch TV screen.

We were wowed by the demo, but we didn't get a lot of details about pricing or availability -- until now.

This week, Sony showed it off at IFA, a huge consumer tech show in Berlin, Germany.

There we found some good news and some bad news. The good: it will be available this month. The bad: It's an ultraluxury product that will cost upwards of $50,000 and is only available to people in the New York area.

Still, it's an intriguing concept with some crazy potential uses.

Caption by / Photo by John P. Falcone/CNET

Rather than projecting from the back of the room to the front, the Short Throw Projector projects on the wall it's nearest to.

Caption by / Photo by John P. Falcone/CNET

The projector uses SXRD laser technology (yes, frickin' laser beams) to render a 4K image on the wall.

Caption by / Photo by John P. Falcone/CNET

Turn the lights out, and you've got a real movie theater experience. And unlike with a standard projector, you don't need to worry about ceiling mounts, or a ceiling fan, getting in the way of the beam.

Caption by / Photo by John P. Falcone/CNET

The Short Throw Projector was presented at CES as part of Sony's Life Space UX concept. Here, the projector is working in concert with a ceiling-mounted projector and a wall screen (on the right) to present a single "sunset" motif.

Caption by / Photo by John P. Falcone/CNET

Another motif for Life Space UX: an underwater theme.

Caption by / Photo by John P. Falcone/CNET

Yet another theme: a Paris street scene.

Caption by / Photo by John P. Falcone/CNET

About that side panel we mentioned earlier, it doubles as a decorative mirror when not in use. But activate the touch screen, and ...

Caption by / Photo by John P. Falcone/CNET

...Once activated, it's yet another touch screen.

Caption by / Photo by John P. Falcone/CNET

On the other side of the Life Space UX room was the ceiling-mounted table projector. Here, the downward-firing projector is built into the light fixture, and displays objects on the table.

Caption by / Photo by John P. Falcone/CNET

It's yet another take on the idea of a "Minority Report" interface; you can manipulate the projected objects on the table via touch.

Caption by / Photo by John P. Falcone/CNET

While Life Space UX was among the more impressive tech in the room, it's not expected to reach consumers anytime soon.

Caption by / Photo by John P. Falcone/CNET

So that's the deal with Sony's 4K Ultra Short Throw Projector and the Life Space UX. But if you don't have 50 grand to spare on such things, don't despair.

At IFA 2014, Sony debuted a smaller, more portable, and presumably less expensive model of the same concept. The Portable Short Throw Projector is also on the horizon. This one was part of a smart-home demo, and we don't have an expected launch date or price yet. But whenever it does come around, it will show a 23-inch image, and it's waterproof, so you can use it in the bath.

Caption by / Photo by Colin McDonald/CNET
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