Event Coverage

Sharp's Quattron LED TV Launch - Yellow Joins The RGB Trio

By Andy Sim - 2 Jul 2010

Sharp's Quattron LED TV Launch - Yellow Joins The RGB Trio

Sharp Says Hello To The Yellow Fellow

Back in the 19th century, Thomas Young once suggested that our color vision can be explained by the Trichromatic Theory. In simple words, three "RGB" photoreceptor cells in our retinas determine how our eyes and brain perceive colors. Fast forward to the 21st century, and here we have LCD makers who believe that adding another primary color would expand the color gamut, and perhaps the yellow pallet. Now, we aren't experts in the field of optics or human genetics, still, it would be wonderful if our eyes are able to decipher every color on the spectrum. Those were our thoughts as we witnessed Sharp's Quattron launch today. 

Thomas Young might never have dreamed of a television, much less envision one which uses four primary colors instead of three. Hang on a bit, as we bring you more pictures from Sharp's new addition to their AQUOS LED family.

Having made its rounds in the States, Europe and Japan, local consumers now have a chance to feast their eyes on the AQUOS Quattron LE820M LED TVs. The slim AQUOS series is a rather intriguing thing, not because of their LED backlights, but what goes on inside the Japanese-made X-Gen LCD panel. Understandably, a fourth primary color, yellow, has been added to the unit's sub-pixels instead of the usual RGB or red, green and blue model. Call it Quad Pixel if you will. Of course, Sharp claims this color additive helps improve the Quattron's aptitude in reproducing faithful colors, and rather dramatically at that. And no, we refuse to make any silly Coldplay references at this point.  

The LE820M series will be the first Quattron sets to hit our local shores. The X-Gen LCD panel is powered by Edge-lit LED backlights, and Sharp has thrown in a yellow sub-pixel to the standard RGB formula used in conventional LCD panels.

Sharp's ultimate goal is simple - to reproduce every single color possible on their AQUOS TVs. Looking at Sharp's diagram, the Quattron panels was designed to cover a wider color spectrum requiring yellow components compared to conventional LCD TVs.

So, what's the big deal about a fourth primary color you might ask? According to Sharp, the 4-color system is supposed to boost yellow production levels and color gradations. Specific hues such as Gold, Yellow and Light Blue should appear more vibrant as a result. Expect skin tones, sunflowers, sky and more to be reproduced faithfully with Sharp's Quattron technology.

According to the Japanese firm, the Quattron promises higher contrast levels by reducing backlight leakage, thanks to Sharp's UV2A photo-alignment technology. Additional perks of the LE820M series include Eco functions, DivX playback support and enhanced 100/120Hz frame interpolation dubbed as "Fine Motion Advanced". As of today's launch, Sharp has introduced three sizes for the AQUOS display thus far and they are currently available in 40, 46 and 52 inch variations. The AQUOS Quattron LE820M series is fitted with a conventional analogue tuner, although Sharp might bring in a LE820X variant with a digital tuner in the near future.

There's more to the new AQUOS than Sharp's Quattron technology. The LE820M series also offer attractive features such as DLNA capabilities, 24p support, a 100/120Hz panel and DivX HD playback. Want one?

It's hardly discernible, but we did catch traces of a yellow sub-pixel whilst attempting to magnify the LCD panel. Can you see it? Maybe you can give it a try when you spot the LE820M at the store. Remember to bring a magnifying glass.

As mentioned, there are three sizes you get to choose from. Although Sharp is reluctant to disclose the LE802M's prices, they did hint that the new Quattrons would cost 30 percent more than conventional LED-backlit models. While that's no small premium, let your eyes be the judge if the fourth color makes a positive impression on you.

On a tangential note, we recall catching George Takei's (aka Mr Sulu from Star Trek) candid appearance in a Sharp ad when the Quattrons first hit America. If you've missed the rather amusing commercial, well, here it is again. Everybody say wow.


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