Sony takes to CES 2016 with new 4K HDR Ultra HDTVs, multi-room audio, more

XBR-X930D Series 4K HDR LCD TV (PRNewsFoto/Sony Electronics)

Sony held its CES 2016 press conference yesterday, taking the opportunity to announce a slew of new products. Sony President Michael Fasulo introduced new 4K BRAVIA Ultra HDTVs, fresh multi-room speakers and a sweet hi-res turntable. Details were also released on a new streaming service from Sony Pictures that will bring “new and classic titles” from its library of films directly to the just-announced televisions. More below.

First up, Sony discussed its plans for 4K Ultra HDTVS in 2016 with high-dynamic range (HDR) compatibility. The new X930D BRAVIA 4K LCD UHDTVs include Sony’s Slim Backlight Drive technology that the manufacturer claims will take “picture quality to new heights.” Sony is leaning on Android TV to power its 55- and 65-inch sets and manage the built-in smart functionality. Sony also announced a new X850D line that arrives without the Slim Backlight Drive but still can handle HDR sources.

Along those lines, Sony Pictures has taken the wraps off the new ULTRA streaming app that will launch later this year in the United States. The service will provide consumers with the ability to purchase and stream 4K HDR movies or TV shows from its back catalog. More details are set to come on this new venture in the coming months.

CES 2016 also saw the announcement of a few home audio speakers from Sony. It will be expanding its multi-room line-up with two new options that focus on improving your home theater. The SRS-ZR7 and SRS-ZR5 each feature HDMI inputs and can be configured in wireless stereo mode or as a part of a larger TV setup. Both speakers can be controlled via Sony’s SongPal app and offer support for Google Cast and Spotify Connect.

Sony also announced a soundbar and wireless subwoofer that can be paired with a multi-room setup as well. With a built-in 4K-compatible HDMI connection, this soundbar is worth a look for home theater enthusiasts. All of Sony’s new speakers are slated for release this spring.

Finally, Sony is taking note of vinyl’s resurgence over the last couple of years by announcing a new turntable that is capable of digitizing your collection with a high-resolution output. The new PS-HX500 connects to your computer or other recording device via USB and offers an output with direct stream digital quality. While converting vinyl records to digital formats isn’t a new phenomenon, doing so with this level of resolution hasn’t always been available to consumers. Pricing and release details are yet to come.

Be sure to keep it locked to the entire 9to5 family of sites as we cover latest Apple, Google, electric vehicle and consumer technology news out of CES 2016.

More from CES 2016:


Sony Unveils its Latest Products at CES 2016

Tokyo, Japan – Sony Corporation will unveil its new lineup of products slated for release in 2016, at the 2016 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) held from Wednesday, January 6 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
At the Sony press conference held on Tuesday, January 5 (local time), Sony Corporation President and CEO Kazuo Hirai stated, “From the choices we’re making to be differentiated and unique, to the curiosity that drives our passion to face challenges, to our commitment as enablers of creativity, it is clear that the philosophical and strategic pillars are in place to continue to build a stronger, better, more profitable Sony. Providing kando continues to be the core focus and goal of our business.”
Sony Electronics (SEL) President and COO Michael Fasulo then took the stage to introduce some of Sony’s upcoming products to be released within the year, across a wide range of categories. Sony’s 4K BRAVIA® TVs heavily emphasize picture quality and look, and they bring next-generation level visual experiences right into your living room. Sony’s ever expanding range of audio products offers you different ways to enjoy music to fit your unique tastes, from High-Resolution Audio (“Hi-Res”) to extra bass. Its line of digital imaging products enables you to capture easy-to-miss moments in the great outdoors and preserve memories of life’s most important events in stunning true-to-life detail. And finally, products in the Life Space UX series blend right into physical living spaces and redefine how entertainment is experienced. Sony will be bringing forth new products in each of these categories throughout the course of the year.

Sony will pursue ever more realistic and immersive visuals, by merging its superb 4K picture clarity technologies together with HDR (High Dynamic Range), which has recently garnered significant attention as a new technology. HDR dramatically expands the range of visual expression possible, by realizing higher brightness, higher contrast and more vibrant colors. Starting this year, Sony will brand its BRAVIA TVs that are capable of taking full advantage of 4K HDR content with a new “4K HDR” logo, in order to clearly convey to consumers that – with these TVs – they are assured of next-generation, emotionally compelling visual experiences.

The new X93D series of BRAVIA 4K LCD TVs is equipped with Sony’s brand new Slim Backlight Drive™ technology that takes picture quality to new heights by delivering the best quality from 4K HDR content. With a unique backlight system structure, the X93D series realizes grid array backlighting, which was previously only achievable with full-array direct LED backlights. Slim Backlight Drive, combined with Sony’s X-tended Dynamic Range™ PRO contrast-enhancing technology and wide color gamut TRILUMINOS™ Display technology, delivers brighter highlights, deeper blacks and more brilliant colors. This trifecta of technologies unlocks the full potential of 4K HDR content, all the while realizing an even slimmer TV design. When hung against a wall, X93D series BRAVIAs virtually disappear into it, leaving behind nothing but the picture itself. This series also delivers a new intuitive viewing experience, with Sony’s seamless user interface and voice search functionality putting a whole world of content a mere click or query away.
At its booth, Sony will also be showing off one of its next-generation technologies, Backlight Master Drive. This technology boosts brightness and contrast even further in order to truly tap the full combined potential of 4K HDR. The Backlight Master Drive demonstration will feature a 85″ prototype that achieves precision backlight boosting with ultra high density direct LED backlights. Paired with X-tended Dynamic Range PRO, Backlight Master Drive attains an unprecedented dynamic range, dramatically improving visual depth and realism. It recreates incredibly deep blacks and dazzling lights with an ultra peak brightness of 4,000 nits, generating images so convincing that they appear to be real, right before your very eyes.
Additionally, at its press conference, Sony unveiled ULTRA, a new app from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment to be launched this year in the US. With ULTRA, you can purchase and stream 4K HDR movies and TV shows – the best new and classic titles from the 4K digital library of Sony Pictures – directly on your Sony BRAVIA TV.
Three new products will be added to the h.ear™ series, which not only delivers incredible clarity High-Resolution Audio (“Hi-Res”), but also makes a memorable fashion statement with eye-catching color schemes. “h.ear go” is a portable wireless speaker that is easy to take from place to place. Meanwhile, “h.ear on Wireless NC” and “h.ear in Wireless” are wireless headphones that complement the wired headsets previously released. With these additions to the series, h.ear is now more portable than ever – from in the home to on-the-go – yet with the same Hi-Res quality and standout colors that free you to choose your own style.
In addition to its Hi-Res offerings, Sony is also adding to its popular lineup of EXTRA BASS (XB) products that deliver powerful, resonating sound, with the MDR-XB650BT headphones, SRS-XB3 and SRS-XB2 wireless speakers, and GTK-XB7 high power audio system. These new EXTRA BASS offerings will practically transport you to a club or music festival, allowing you to enjoy soul-shaking bass anywhere.

Some of Sony’s new audio products will also feature new Wireless Surround functionality, allowing you to easily achieve an immersive home theater set-up by wirelessly linking *1 Sony sound bars and wireless speakers*2.

Both the h.ear and EXTRA BASS series were designed to recreate the sense of “being there in the moment” as faithfully as possible, from the subtleties of the artist’s breathing to the powerful sound of a live stage performance. Sony will continue to expand these lineups further, in order to meet the needs of music lovers around the world, who have increasingly diverse listening styles and musical tastes.


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