Inside Panasonic Visual Products

Asking the developers of the
1-Chip DLP™ Projector

Revealing the secret behind the RCQ10 — our most adaptable projector, with immersive, color rich images

The focus to create a more vivid “RED”

It all started from customers wanting to faithfully reproduce cultural assets with vibrant and natural colors- this meant they required a projector that would be able to reproduce original content, while maintaining current size and durability.

—— Today, we are interviewing two of the leading engineers engaged in the development of the PT-RCQ10 1-Chip DLP Projector.

Up until now, we recommended our 3-Chip DLP to customers seeking excellent color reproduction. However, in terms of price and size, it sometimes didn't match the customer’s needs. So, we decided to create a 1-Chip DLP with improved color reproductions- something we had never been able to do in the past.

When it comes to color reproduction, we were especially particular about the “red.”

—— Is red a difficult color to express?

Well, Red is an active color that elevates the viewer's mood, and has a stronger stimulus than any other color, so all video creators are very particular about the color red. If you look at luxury sports cars or corporate logos, you can see that red is used very often. How well a projected looks, often depends on how well the reds can be expressed.

By developing a larger wheel than before for the red color segment, we were able to improve the red brightness on the PT-RCQ10. Further combining it with Panasonic’s original image processing technology, we were able to create a better color balance — This is what we call the “rich color harmonizer” which allows the RCQ10 to faithfully reproduce original content.

Playing another key role in faithfully reproducing original content is of course the resolution. However, attaining both high color reproduction and great image quality in terms of resolution can be a tradeoff.

—— Please look forward to our next session to find out what kind of approach they took to attain both color and image quality performance!

*Rich Color Harmonizer:

Creating smooth images, that goes beyond the pixel resolution

Smooth Pixel Drive* is a technology that increases the resolution of an image. With the 1-axis pixel shift technology, images are overlapped onto each other and displayed to improve the resolution. Even when inputting 2K images, they can be up-converted to display high-resolution images.

With the conventional 1-axis pixel shift technology, images were typically doubled in speed, and to synchronize with the image, the 1-Chip DLP wheel was also driven at 2x-speed. However, when driving the wheel at 2x-speed, it generated color noise and significantly reduced the performance.

So, we developed a technology that synchronizes the wheel at triple the speed, with double-speed images to achieve a 1-axis pixel shift technology that generates less color noise.

However, as we mentioned in our last volume, attaining both color reproduction and higher resolution can be a tradeoff. But stopping the technological evolution there would mean betraying the expectations of the customers.

By combining the DMD panel drive sequence with a newly developed Boundary Smoother that expresses gradation smoothly, we succeeded in attaining both high color reproducibility with the smooth pixel drive and image quality performance with our rich color harmonizer.

We hope this ability to create detailed images with vivid colors will be useful in cases such as museums- where it is essential to recreate detail and color.

*Smooth Pixel Drive:

Fitting everything inside the original 1-Chip Cabinet for easy integration

Since this was our first model with 1-axis pixel shift technology, we started completely from scratch, so we had a very difficult time developing it.
We also had to design it while taking into account its size- it needed to fit into a conventional 1-Chip DLP cabinet- anything bigger, would make it harder on our customers. Optical performance and temperature were also an issue along with the noise that it generated. We repeatedly went through trial and error to improve the overall performance.

The PT-RCQ10 also supports 4K input.

Not to mention we created an open slot for Slot NX Compatibility, which allows customers to integrate into a flexible system with rich interfaces, such as DisplayPort™, 12G-SDI, HDMI, DVI-D and 12G-SDI optical with our optional interface boards.

Basic terminals are standard-equipped. The system is easily extended usingoption boards.

Being able to attach an option board gives it the same advantages as large venue- models, but its size looks to be about the same as other smaller installation models, which shows some amazing ingenuity.

In short, the PT-RCQ10 is the first 1-Chip DLP Projector to fully support 4K playback with a picture quality that exceeds the panel resolution, powerful colors, and optional interfaces.

—— There were certainly a wide variety of techniques employed, weren’t there. This included the two points of color and picture quality, and many developments in memory. Thank you very much for today’s interview!