Ultra HD televisions have been a resounding theme this year at CES, and Sony was among the electronics giants pushing to promote the higher resolution in its premium models. The company last year introduced the gigantic 84-inch XBR84X900 with an Ultra HD panel, however the Bravia lineup has been expanded to include 65- and 55-inch options that edge slightly closer to the mass market.
Toshiba, Samsung and LG are all promoting their own Ultra HD TVs at CES this year. Each of the companies has worked hard to differentiate their products, and each claims to be leading the industry toward Ultra HD. Sony's new X900A models appear to be the only Ultra HD TVs with ferro-fluid speakers, which are prominently visible on each side of the display panel. In an age of super-thin bezels and minimalist aesthetics, some buyers may find the visible concavities to be a disruption.
We did not mind the speaker placement, however, and were intrigued to learn that the speakers utilize magnetic ferrofluid technology. The company first used ferrofluid speakers in several iOS docks introduced early in 2012, claiming the technology reduces distortion and enables a thinner profile. It is difficult to make any speaker judgements on the Las Vegas Convention Center show floor, leaving us waiting to hear the system in an enclosed space that approximates a living room.
The 55-inch XBR-55X900A and 65-inch XBR-65900A are expected to ship sometime this spring. An unanswered question still clouds the Ultra HD and OLED TVs unveilings, as Sony and its competitors have remained mum on the price tags for technology that has been out of reach for most consumers over the past few years.