Panasonic is launching a compact new 5,200 lumen 4K laser projector, the PT-FRQ50, in January 2022 for museums, corporate meeting rooms, classrooms and esports. Built with a 2x zoom lens to display large image sizes in confined areas, it has a wide image shift to accommodate spaces where the projector position can’t be centred relative to the screen.
Laser projection gives projectors a very long lifespan in terms of steady consistent brightness and relatively constant, stable colour rendition over time. Their brightness level decreases at a much slower rate than lamp-based systems. Power consumption is low, and laser diode failure happens very seldom. When it does, the remaining diodes continue to generate the image on-screen.
For corporate presentations, classrooms and museum exhibitions, the PT-FRQ50 outputs smooth, detailed UHD/4K (3840 x 2160) images and supports 240Hz/1080p frame rates with an input-to-output latency of under 8ms. The low latency widens its scope to handle the high resolution and frame rate requirements of video simulations and esports.
To address different projection applications and 4K installation environments, the projector has two HDMI inputs that support regular CEC (consumer) commands from compatible devices. It includes a DIGITAL LINK connection for 4K video and control-signal transmission over long distances with a separate LAN terminal for control.
The 2.0x zoom lens, with flexible throw distances, is able to display large image sizes inside smaller spaces. Combined with a wide vertical/horizontal lens shift – vertical: +71 percent, -49 percent; horizontal: +34 percent, -27 percent – it gives operators more leeway to adjust projector location and image position.
The PT-FRQ50 is built on Panasonic’s 1-Chip DLP SOLID SHINE Laser projection system, and includes Panasonic’s Quad Pixel Drive, a pixel-quadrupling technique that produces extremely detailed 4K images that retain natural sharpness and clarity.
Quad Pixel achieves better-than-4K resolution using a high-speed 2560 x 1600-pixel chip that shifts each pixel vertically and horizontally, in effect yielding 4 times the original number of pixels. The added detail is enough, for example, to make small text legible on images used in presentations and lectures. High-speed 240Hz processing and a narrow DMD aperture ratio creates greater realism, resolving fine details and textures in smooth, grid-less images.
Rich Colour Enhancer produces accurate colours and can be adjusted to prioritise either image brightness, or deeper colour saturation, depending on the content and the projection conditions.
Maintaining the PT-FRQ50
Built for reliability, the projector typically achieves up to 20,000-hours maintenance-free operation, which is partly due to its airtight optical system. When dust gets inside a projector’s optical engine, temperature rises, the light source degrades and picture quality declines. Air filters can be used to exclude dust but require regular maintenance. Because the SOLID SHINE Laser projectors don’t need filters, this kind of maintenance is not necessary. Also, the PT-FRQ50’s monitoring and control software can include optional Early Warning functions to prevent downtime.
Geometric adjustment is performed using a set of specialised tools. Free Grid works via remote control alone, without a PC, to correct image distortion caused by uneven surfaces or irregular objects on flat or curved screens. Users lay a grid over the projected image and reshape distorted areas by adjusting the position of node or V/H line control-points.
Geometry Manager Pro is free software that automatically calibrates multiple screens simultaneously via camera. You can control and calibrate projectors from a laptop via Ethernet with tools for colour-matching, brightness control, colour uniformity, black-level and input-signal adjustment. The Remote Preview Lite software allows operators to check their input-video on a PC, without projecting the images.
The PT-FRQ50 will be available from January 2022. Pricing starts from AUD9,699 RRP. business.panasonic.com