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Press Release

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May 18, 2004

Sony Develops New 4K SXRD High-Resolution Liquid Crystal Display Panel
- Capable of Generating Four Times the Resolution of Full HD for Use in Upcoming Digital Cinema Projectors -


Tokyo, Japan - Sony Corporation today announced the development of the new 4K SXRD, or silicon x-tal (crystal) reflective display. The high-resolution display device achieves a high panel contrast of 4000:1, tailor-made for the rigors of commercial-grade digital cinema projectors. Its resolution of 8.85 megapixels (4096H X 2160V) is greater than Full HD, which has a 2 megapixel or 1920 x 1080 resolution.

   This announcement comes one-year after Sony's successful development of the Full HD display, which is currently featured for home use on the QUALIA 004-R1 high-resolution front projector. The new 4K SXRD device achieves four times the resolution of the original 2K SXRD display, which generates high-quality images with deep black hues and sharp clarity .
   Sony uses this device for each of the basic colors, "RGB (red, green, blue)" which constructs image to create pictures with 26,550,000 pixels.

photo:4K SXRD

   Sony will introduce this high resolution liquid crystal display device to the rapidly growing digital market, and will commercialize this for use in projectors for cinemas and other big screens in the fiscal year 2004.
   In addition to extending the use of 4K SXRD, Sony will actively develop 2K SXRD device for use in home rear projection TVs so that consumers can enjoy the same high-quality, big screen experience at home.

[Key Features]
1.1. High-quality pictures through resolution, brightness and contrast that are higher than the original Full HD.

[High resolution: 8.85 mega pixels (4K: 4096H X 2160V)]
Sony was able to achieve high-resolution by optimizing the driving circuit in each pixel. The total pixel area was reduced by 10 percent by reducing the size of each pixel from 9µm to 8.5µm, while maintaining the inter-pixel spacing of 0.35µm. As such, 8.85 mega pixels were integrated into the area of measuring 1.55 inches diagonally across. Furthermore, Sony has radically designed the Driving Circuit Technology and Sony's original write signal on technology, which enables the creation of smooth images by driving 8,850,000 pixels accurately onto a silicon circuit. These advances facilitated a high-grade, high-resolution picture quality previously unseen on fixed-pixel projection devices, with outstanding cinematic quality and image smoothness that can be enjoyed free from the grainy "mesh" effect noticeable on conventional projectors, even on over 300 inch size screen.

[Brightness: four times the original]
The brightness of projectors is directly proportional to the size of a panel when the luminance of the lamp is the same. The newly developed 1.55 inch panel (increased from 0.78 inch) directly aids in widening the illumination area by four times. Additionally, this succeeded in increasing the reflection rate from 65% to 72%.
As a result, Sony is able to provide projectors for cinema with enough brightness where high brightness level is required.

[High contrast: 4000 : 1]
By adopting vertically aligned liquid crystals material, thin liquid crystal cell gap and inorganic alignment layer to the liquid crystal cell, SXRD achieves its high contrast. Furthermore, by optimizing alignment layer fabrication process, it ensures the original alignment layer durability and still achieves the contrast of 4000 : 1.

2.Achieving high product quality and production efficiency
[New process of assembling entire wafers into panel and simultaneously improved quality and production efficiency for large size panel]

Sony assembles entire 8 inch wafers and glass substrate at once and splits it into pieces to produce as LCD panel afterwards. In addition, although Sony developed and adopted 1.55 inch panel which is relatively large size for projector device, thanks to the establishment of "Wafer-based LC Cell Assembly Process", Sony is still able to create narrow space which is less than 2µm, without using spacers and seal equally on panel image area. This process has significantly reduced dust ingress which simultaneously improves production efficiency. Sony is able to create high quality panels with equal brightness with no noise caused by dust or spacers, at the same time.

[SXRD]Main Specifications

Display DeviceSXRD
(Silicon X-tal Reflective Display)
Size1.55" across Diagonal
Resolution4096(H) X 2160(V) Pixels
Contrast (as device)Over 4000 : 1
Pixel Pitch8.5µm
Width (between pixels)0.35µm
Response Speed5msec (tr + tf)
Liquid Crystal ModeVertical Aligned Mode
Alignment LayerInorganic Thin Film
Backplane Process0.35µm MOS Process
Liquid Crystal Cell GapLess than 2µm